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We are now compiling a page with helpful hints for researchers. We have started with how to access military records.

Researching Military Records

Longwood's Journey


If you should have other valuable tips or places for researchers to look, please contact us.

Researching Military Records


 

Civil War

For UnionVeterans, check the 5 volume set of The Roster of Union Soldiers, by Broadfoot Publishing. This will tell you what unit the soldier served with. Many local libraries have this collection as part of their local history collections.

You can then mail to the National archives to get a pension and military file on the soldier.
http://www.archives.gov/research_room/genealogy/research_topics/military.html
You may wish to save time and use a private researcher. We have used the Civil War Records Consultants and have found them to be excellent.
http://www.civilwarrecords.net/
 

Check the official records of the Union and Confederate Armies. This is a searchable database.
http://library5.library.cornell.edu/moa/browse.monographs/waro.html

The Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies. A searchable database.
http://library5.library.cornell.edu/moa/browse.monographs/ofre.html

The National Park Service's Civil War Soldier's and Sailor's system
http://www.itd.nps.gov/cwss/

The New York State Archives at Albany has the Grand Army of the Republic files in their collection. In 1895, the then state historian sent out a request to the local chapters to ask the members to write a personal account of memories. They are organized by regiment and contain valuable information.
www.nysarchives.org/a/researchroom/rr_mi_GAR_guide.shtml#RegHistSurvey

Go to the Library of Congress web site and search to see if a Regimental History was written. Example: 57th New York Infantry - Type in the regiment, if a book title appears, go to the reference desk of your local library and request an inter-library loan. Your library will find a library that has the book, which it will loan to your library for certain amount of time
http://www.loc.gov/z3950/
Use Simple Search

National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections - Descriptions of approximately 72,300 collections located in 1406 different repositories with approximately 1,085,000 index references to topical subjects and personal, family, corporate, and geographic names. Here you can find where letters, diaries, and other valuable information can be located. Try a number of different searches such as family name, division, regiment.
http://lcweb.loc.gov/coll/nucmc/nucmccat.html

If no regimental history was written, then look for the 30+ volume set of The Supplement to the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, by Broadfoot Publishing. This volumes contain the order of events for Regiments and individual Companies. These entries follow the regiment and companies through the war.
http://www.broadfootpublishing.com/

 


 

World War 1

Although a fire at the National Archive facility in 1973 destroyed much of the individual information, you can still piece together information.

Soldier Card - The New York state Archives keeps record cards of men who served during world war 1. The information on these cards consists of birth date, units and companies served with, rank, engagements, dates served overseas.
http://www.nysarchives.org/a/researchroom/rr_military.shtml

2. With the above information you can send away to the National Archives to see if personal information was not destroyed in the 1973 fire.

3. You can get copies of the morning reports for the company of the man you are researching.
http://www.archives.gov/facilities/mo/st_louis/military_personnel_records/morning_reports_and_unit_rosters.html

MORNING REPORTS are created each morning, as the name implies.  They are an "exception based" system, only containing information on those individuals who are not "Present and Accounted for".  Among the reasons for being listed on a morning report are:
  • Promotion or demotion
  • Being killed, wounded or missing in action
  • Being assigned to a unit, or leaving a unit
  • Going to a hospital for treatment, or to another activity for training
  • You can also get the roster of a particular company.

 

4. Go to the Library of Congress web site and search to see if a Regimental History was written. Example: 77th Division, 305th Infantry - Type in 305th Infantry, if a book title appears, go to the reference desk of your local library and request an inter-library loan. Your library will find a library that has the book, which it will loan to your library for certain amount of time.
http://www.loc.gov/z3950/
Use Simple Search

 

National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections - Descriptions of approximately 72,300 collections located in 1406 different repositories with approximately 1,085,000 index references to topical subjects and personal, family, corporate, and geographic names. Here you can find where letters, diaries, and other valuable information can be located. Try a number of different searches such as family name, division, regiment.
http://lcweb.loc.gov/coll/nucmc/nucmccat.html

Researching a soldier killed overseas- These records were not destroyed as they were kept with the National Archives in MD.

National Archives and records Administration
8601 Adelphi Road
College Park MD
20740-6001
NWCTM

These records usually contain correspondence with families to determine if the family wanted the body brought back home for burial, or to be placed in the American cemeteries in France.. They sometimes have a description of how the soldier died. 

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