United States, Revolutionary War Pension Payment Ledgers (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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United States Revolutionary War Pension Payment Ledgers, 1818 - 1872 .
This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
United States
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Record Description
Record Type Pension Payment Ledgers
Record Group RG 217: Records of the Accounting Officers of the Department of the Treasury
Collection years 1818-1872
Microfilm Publication T718. Ledgers of Payments, 1818-1872, to U.S. Pensioners Under Acts of 1818 through 1858, from Records of the Office of the Third Auditor of the Treasury. 23 rolls.
Arrangement By pension act, pension agency and the first letter of the last name
National Archives Identifier 544
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
National Archives and Records Administration

What is in This Collection?

For a complete list of the NARA roll numbers contained in this collection, see the United States, Pension Payment Ledgers Coverage Table.

This collection contains images of pension payment ledgers created by the Treasury Department to record semiannual payments to veterans and widows of the Revolutionary War from 1818-1872. A few records for the War of 1812 are also included. A coverage table for localities and dates can be found under User Guidance. The collection is arranged by pension act, pension agency, and the first letter of the veteran's last name. The Event Date" is the date pension payment began.This collection is from Record Group 217, Records of the Accounting Officers of the Department of the Treasury, and is National Archive Microfilm publication T718.

To Browse This Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for United States, Revolutionary War Pension Payment Ledgers, 1818-1872.

Collection Content

Sample Images

What Can This Collection Tell Me?

The content of the records differ depending upon whether the record is for a pensioner, invalid, or widow. You may find any of the following:

  • Name of person receiving payment
  • Name of spouse if recipient is a widow
  • State and sometimes city
  • Rank
  • Amount of money allowed
  • Dates of payments
  • Death dates
  • Additional comments

How Do I Search This Collection?

To begin your search you will need to know:

  • The name of your ancestor
  • The state and county where your ancestor lived
  • The rank your ancestor held in the military
  • If a widow, you need to know her name, residence and spouse's name

Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page:
Fill in the requested information on the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor.

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:
To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒ Select the "Browse through images" link on the initial search page
⇒ Select the "NARA roll number, volume letter, and pension type" which takes you to the images

Look at each image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine if the image relates to them. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination. Keep in mind:

  • There may be more than one person in the records with the same name
  • You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name
  • Your ancestor may have used different names or variations of their name throughout their life

What Do I Do Next?

When you have located your ancestor’s Revolutionary War Pension Payment record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family. This information will often lead you to other records.

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?

  • Death dates may lead to church or burial records
  • Use the name and residence or locality to search for church records, land records, and census records
  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname. This is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have been seeking the pension
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct

I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now?

  • Look for variant spellings of the surnames and nicknames
  • Look for an index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records
  • Search the records of nearby counties

Citing This Collection

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.

Collection Citation

"United States, Revolutionary War Pension Payment Ledgers, 1818-1872" Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing NARA microfilm publication T718. National Archives and Records Services, Washington D.C.

Image Citation:
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.

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