That's what I did today. I desperately needed to get my Civil War Pension files (what I've ordered and received) in order. These are all Union pension files. I do have one Confederate soldier who was killed in action and I plan to try and locate a file for him. But, the confederate files are hard to come by.
These are digital files in PDF format, so thankfully not a bunch of paper.
Since 2016 when I ordered my very first Civil War Pension file, to last month when I ordered my most recent - I have been captivated by them.
They can contain copious quantities of information or hardly anything at all. Most of the time, though, they are filled with information about that military ancestor, his family, his friends, his time in service, his health and so much more.
I've found Birth, Marriage and Death records/information and also letters. If you're really lucky there might be a photo of the soldier. I'm told that only about 5% contain photos. None of mine have, so far.
The smallest one I've received is 21 pages and the largest is 258
That's quite a disparity. Just for fun I totaled all the pages from all pension files I have, and they came to a whopping 2118 pages.
HOW PENSION FILES DO I CURRENTLY HAVE?
The big question - how many have I blogged about?
That's just under half of the files I’ve received. Thus, my desire to create a spreadsheet and enter every file I have, when I ordered them, when I received them, how many pages they contain and whether or not I have written a blog post ..... yet.
My goal is to review and write about them over the next couple of years. Don't worry, I've perused all of them. Now I just need to really dig in and write.
There are many ways to order these records. They are housed at the National Archives, mostly in Washington, D.C., but some are housed at other locations, like St. Louis.
Ordering directly from the Archives is not only expensive but can also take a very long time from order to receipt.
I've used 2 sources for my pension files.
Both services got me what I'd asked for in a timely manner.
I’d love to hear about your discoveries if you’ve ordered Civil War pension files.
If you’d like to see what a pension file looks like and read about the 10 pension files I’ve written about and the things I found inside them, click here – CIVIL WAR PENSION FILES
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