Union Veterans' and Lineage Society Records

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The Grand Army of the Republic (GAR).[edit | edit source]

This was the major veterans’ organization after the war. It reached its largest membership in the 1890s with about 400,000 members. Below are published histories of the organization with biographical sketches of national and state officials:

By 1890, about 40 percent of Union veterans were members of the Grand Army of the Republic. The descriptive books of each GAR post usually indicate each member’s name, age, birthplace, residence, occupation, and enlistment and discharge information. Records of GAR posts and of other veterans’ organizations may be found in historical societies, state archives, and state libraries.

Related FamilySearch Historical Record Collections[edit | edit source]

The Family History Library has records for:

GAR unit records may be found at local, county or state levels in the FamilySearch Catalog. Explore how to do a place-name search of the FamilySearch Catalog.  In addition, some records may be found by doing a keyword search of theFamilySearch Catalog, using the the keyword "Grand Army of the Republic".

Illinois GAR unit records are held by the Lincoln Presidential Library, but they are not “complete.” In general, they are the quarterly reports sent to the headquarters by each post. They vary widely in what they contain. Some of the older posts have more extensive records. The earlier ones may include a charter, lists of members with age, occupation, and war service information. Possibly also place of birth. Some records include new members and the deaths of members. Most include a list of the current officers. In almost all cases, later records are much less informative than the earlier ones. Many posts have notices of closing. For a few posts we have some minutes or others papers. The date span of the collection is 1866-1939, but most of the post records do not begin until at least the mid-1870s. Search the online catalog of the Lincoln Presidential Library for GAR titles.

Other Civil War lineage societies can be found by using a Place-Name Search of the FamilySearch Catalog and then looking for military history or records (1861–1865) or societies.  Explore how to use the FamilySearch Catalog.

  • African American Veterans in the Grand Army of the Republic. By Tim Pinnick. National Genealogical Society Magazine. (NGS Magazine). July-Sept. 2009. Vol. 35 Number 3 page 28-32. FHL 973 D25ngs. World Cat

Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War, 1861–65[edit | edit source]

This organization was established in 1885. The address of their library and museum is:

Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War
503 South Walnut Street
Springfield, IL 62704
Telephone: 217-544-0616
Website: Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War

Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War[edit | edit source]

Established in 1881, the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War has no permanent headquarters. The society has a grave registration committee. Check the current edition of the "Encyclopedia of Associations" (Worldcat) for contact information.

This site includes a history of the organization, membership information, coming events, a Civil War ancestor registration project, grave registration project, state department (chapter) websites, and links to other related genealogical websites.

The society publishes the following:

Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States (MOLLUS)[edit | edit source]

This society was organized by officers of the Union Army in 1865. Their website has announcements, membership requirements, and national and state organization information.

1805 Pine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Telephone: 215-546-2425
Website: MOLLUS

A roster of the society members are located in:

State Societies[edit | edit source]

The following publications contain deaths of GAR members: