Wednesday, July 7, 2010

NARA Publications and Other Items for Genealogy Research

1. There are several National Archives publications that researchers should examine before using some of the records described herein.  These are: Using Records in the National Archives for Genealogical Research (General Information Leaflet [GIL] No. 5, 1990); Military Service Records in the National Archives of the United States (GIL No. 7, 1985); Information About the National Archives for Prospective Researchers (GIL No. 30, 1990); and Genealogical Records in the National Archives (rev. 1985). Many of the microfilm publications are available in the Regional Archives System throughout the United States. To identify the facility nearest you, see the list in the back of Prologue or refer to The Regional Archives System of the National Archives (GIL No. 22, 1991). Titles of microfilm publications containing relevant War of 1812 - era indexes and records can be found in National Archives Microfilm Resources for Research: A Comprehensive Catalog (1990) and, more specifically, Genealogical and Biographical Research: A Select Catalog of National Archives Microfilm Publications (1983) and Military Service Records: A Select Catalog of National Archives Microfilm Publications (1985).

2. A good genealogical overview of the period is George K. Schweitzer, War of 1812 Genealogy (1988). Recent historical works relating to the war in general are John K. Mahon, The War of 1812 (1972); J.C.A. Stagg, Mr. Madison's War: Politics, Diplomacy, and Warfare in the Early Republic, 1783 - 1830 (1983); and Donald R. Hickey, The War of 1812: A Forgotten Conflict (1989). In addition, many states have published rosters of their troops called to duty during the War of 1812. Many of these volumes are out of print, but they can be consulted in the appropriate state archives. The National Archives has some of these publications, but the best source is probably the Local History and Genealogy Room of the Library of Congress.

3. See Laws of the United States Governing the Granting of Army and Navy Pensions (1923).

4. Copies of compiled military service records can be obtained through the mail by completing NATF Form 86. Copies of pensions and bounty land warrant application files can be obtained using NATF Form 85.  Each record must be requested on a separate form. Forms and information about other records can be obtained by contacting Old Military and Civil Records (NWCTB), National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC 20408.

5.  Related State Department records are on "War of 1812 Papers" in the Department of State, 1789 - 1815 (M588, 7 rolls).

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