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United States Revolutionary War, Virginia Pension Application Files Introduction and Coverage Table

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United States, Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications - FamilySearch Historical Records


National Archives Microfilm Publications[edit | edit source]

The following Introduction is copied from the National Archives and Records Administration(NARA) microfilm publication M910 images in the article United States, Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications - FamilySearch Historical Records. The related Pension File referred to in the appendix is on microfilm publication M804, and in the FamilySearch wiki article Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Applications. The NARA introduction for microfilm publication M804 can be found in the related pamphlet Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land-Warrant Application Files. In addition to finding the Introduction in the images on the FamilySearch Wiki the following information can be downloaded from the NARA Microfilm Catalog by entering M910 in the search field.

Introduction[edit | edit source]

On the 18 rolls of this microfilm publication are reproduced 279 pension application files based on military and naval service in the Revolutionary War. The files originated in the Office of the Third Auditor of the Treasury Department, and a large number of them pertain to half-pay pensions of Virginia soldiers and sailors. There is generally an envelope for each soldier or sailor that contains applications for pensions based on his service. A few records, or copies of records, are dated as early as 1778, but most of the documents in the files are dated between 1830 and 1875. They are part of Records of the Veterans Administration, Record Group 15.

For more than a century before the beginning of the Revolutionary War, British Colonies in North America provided pensions for disabled soldiers and sailors. During and after the Revolutionary War, three principal types of pensions were provided by the U.S. Government for servicemen and their dependents. “Disability” or “invalid pensions” were awarded to servicemen for physical disabilities incurred in the line of duty; “service pensions,” to veterans who served for specified periods of time; and “widows’ pensions,” to women whose husbands had been killed in the war or were veterans who had served for specified periods of time.

During the time the U.S. Congress was enacting laws granting increasingly generous pensions to Revolutionary War soldiers, the States were also passing legislation to encourage or reward military service. In May 1779 the General Assembly of Virginia authorized the payment of half pay for life to the State’s military and naval officers, including chaplains, physicians, surgeons, and surgeons’ mates, who served until the end of the war in State units within the State’s borders or in the Continental Army.

Following the cessation of hostilities, many Virginia officers presented half-pay claims, which were disallowed by the Virginia State Auditor. Certain of the officers brought suit in the Virginia courts, and after several years of litigation the State courts declared the claims to be valid. Virginia then south to have the U.S. Government assume the obligation, stating that the State was not financially able to satisfy the claims of the officers due to the cession to the United States of large tracts of land northwest of the Ohio River. Many of the officers presenting claims had served in this northwest territory during the Revolutionary War. Virginia Pointed out that the deed of cession of the territory on March 1, 1784, provided “that the necessary and reasonable expenses incurred by the State of Virginia in subduing any British posts, or in maintaining forts or garrisons within, and for the defence, or in acquiring any part of the territory so ceded or relinquished, shall be fully reimbursed by the United States.” In addition, Virginia claimed that certain other State troops had actually served in the Continental Army and that their claims should rightfully be paid by the National Government.

An act of July 5, 1832, directed the Secretary of the Treasury to reimburse the State of Virginia for half-pay pension payments made to the officers of the Virginia State Navy and certain designated units of the Virginia Line: Col. George Gibson’s Regiment; the Second State Regiment, commanded by Cols. William Brent and Charles Dabney; the regiments commanded boy Cols. George Rogers Clark and Joseph Crockett; Capt. John Roger’s troop of cavalry; the regiment of State artillery commanded by Col. Thomas Marshall; the State garrison regiment commanded by Col. George Muter; and the State cavalry commanded by Maj. John Nelson. The Secretary of the Treasury was further directed in the same act to assume any additional pension payments to officers of these units. The designated units served during the Revolutionary War in the Continental Army or on Virginia’s northwest frontier.

In 1835 the responsibility for administering claims under the act of July 5, 1832, was transferred to the War Department, which administered most of the other federal pension legislation benefiting Revolutionary War veterans. In 1849 general responsibility for pension legislation in the Federal Government was placed in the newly organized Department of the Interior, and in 1930 the Bureau of Pensions of the Interior Department and other offices concerned with veterans were consolidated to form the Veterans Administration. Approximately eighty thousand pension and bounty land warrant application files based on military, naval, and marine service in the Revolutionary War were subsequently accessioned by the National Archives as part of the records of the Veterans Administration.

The pension files reproduced in this publication differ from the main series of Revolutionary War pension files in that they originated in the Office of the Third Auditor of the Treasury Department. The files were originally a collection of documents from many sources concerning applications by the heirs of deceased pensioners for arrearages of pensions. Such claims were generally settled, in the mid-19th century, in the Third Auditor’s Office. Most of the claims relate to Virginia half-pay pensions, but some of them relate to claims under other Revolutionary War pension acts. A few of the files pertain to veterans of the Mexican, Indian, and Civil Wars. Many of records were borrowed by the Third Auditor from the Bureau of Pensions, and there is a great deal of correspondence in the files between the Commissioner of Pensions and the Third Auditor concerning the claims and the transfer of records.

The files were transferred from the Treasury Department to the Navy Department in the second decade of the 20th century. The Navy Department retained those files that related to officers of the Virginia State Navy and forwarded the remaining files to the Adjutant General’s Office of the War Department. The records were transferred to the National Archives in 1941 from the Navy and War departments in two transactions, sometimes referred to as Accessions 837 and 874. The National Archives allocated the pension files to Records of the veterans Administration, Record Group 15.

Most of the veterans with pension files in this publication also have pension files in the main series of Revolutionary War Pension and bounty land warrant applications. The files are often closely related. Documents appointing an administrator for the estate of a deceased veteran, for example, may appear in the veteran’s file in the main series, and correspondence relating to the same appointment may appear in the veteran’s file reproduced in this publication. The main series of Revolutionary War pension and bounty land warrant applications also contains Virginia half-pay claims for which there are no related files in this publication.

The pension files generally consist of an envelope for each soldier or sailor and contain originals and copies of military orders, payrolls, and muster rolls; applications for pensions and arrearages of pensions; sworn statements of individuals attesting to the veracity of the service of the pensioner and the heirship of the applicants; powers of attorney; letters of administration; wills; vouchers showing payment of claims; pension certificates; correspondence; and other records. Most of the soldiers’ files also contain a 3x8 card on which is a typed summary of the major genealogical information in the records. A typical file may contain approximately 50 documents.

The pension files are arranged in two series, one relating to soldiers and one relating to sailors, and thereunder alphabetically by surname of soldier or sailor. Both of the series contain files relating to Virginia half-pay claims, and the series of soldiers’ files also contains pension applications under other Revolutionary War and later acts. The pension files of soldiers, which are filmed first were assigned numbers by the Adjutant Generals Office ranging from 050000 to 050201. The numbers are a continuation of the numbers assigned to miscellaneous Revolutionary War records (The Manuscript File) in the War Department Collection of Revolutionary War Records. The envelopes of soldiers’ pension files are labeled with number assigned by the National Archives; the name of the veteran, sometimes with variant spellings of his name; references to any related pension files; the State for which the veteran served; and the designation “Half Pay” or “Not Half Pay.” The files designated “Half Pay” pertain to claims under the act of July 5, 18.2. Those designated “Not Half Pay” pertain to claims under other acts.

The envelopes of sailors’ pension files are generally labeled with the sailor’s name, rank, ship, references to related pension files, and the designation “Virginia State Navy, YS File.” “YS” is a file designation for the Virginia State Navy pensions from the Subject file of the Naval Records Collection of the Office of Naval Records and Library, Record group 45. A few pension files relating to marines are also included in this series.

Within the envelopes, the documents are unarranged except in cases where the file consists of more than 10 pages. In these instances the documents containing the more significant genealogical information have been placed first, preceded by a sheet entitled “Selected Records.” All remaining documents in such files are unarranged and are preceded by a sheet entitled “Non-selected Records.”

The appendix that follows this introduction lists the names of the veterans with pension files in this publication and the citations of related pension files in the main series of Revolutionary War pension and bounty land warrant application files. The appendix also indicates which of the veterans served in Virginia military and naval forces.

Indexes[edit | edit source]

The names of most of the soldiers and sailors of whom there are pension application files reproduced in this microfilm publication are listed in Max E. Hoyt’s Index to Revolutionary War Pension Applications. (Washington, D.C.: National Genealogical Society, 1966). Much of the information in the files and additional information from other sources concerning the Virginia military and naval forces has been published in Gaius Marcus Brumbaugh’s Revolutionary War Records, Volume 1, Virginia (Washington, 1936). Related Records

The main series of pension and bounty land warrant application files based on the service of Revolutionary War military, naval, and marine personnel has been reproduced as National Archives Microfilm Publication M804, Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land-Warrant Application files , and M805, Selected Records From Revolutionary War Pensions and Bounty-Land-Warrant Application Files.

Additional information concerning the military service of Revolutionary War soldiers and sailors is available in the War Department Collection of the Revolutionary War Records, Record Group 93. Most of the returns, muster rolls, and payrolls in the Collection have been published as M246, United States, Revolutionary War Rolls, 1775–1783. Abstracts made from these records and transcribed onto cards for each soldier or sailor are available as M881, Compiled Service Records of Soldiers Who Served in the American Army During the Revolutionary War, and M880, Compiled Service Records of American Naval Personnel and Members of the Departments of the Quartermaster General and the Commissary General of Military Stores Who Served During the Revolutionary War. A name index to both series of complied service records is available as M860, General Index to the Compiled Military Service Records of Revolutionary War Soldiers.

The following unbound records and record books from the War Department Collection of Revolutionary War Records have also been filmed: M859, Miscellaneous Numbered Records (The Manuscript File) in the War Department collection of Revolutionary War Records 1175–1790’s, M853 Numbered Record Books Concerning Military Operations and Service, Pay and Settlement of Accounts, and Supplies in the War Department Collection of Revolutionary War. A name index to these two series is available as M847, Special Index to Numbered Records in the War Department Collection of Revolutionary War Records, 1775–1783.

Naval Records relating to the Revolutionary War period can also be found in the Naval Records Collection of the Office of Naval Records and Library, Record Group 45. An important series from this record group is available on microfilm as M625, Area File of the Naval Records Collection, 1775–1910.

Additional records relating to the Virginia half-pay claims and the Third Auditor’s activities can be found in Records of the Veterans Administration, Record Group 15, and Records of the United States General Accounting Office, Record Group 217.

These introductory Remarks were written by Marie B. Allen

Pension File Appendix[edit | edit source]

Pension File (M910) Related Pension File (M804)
Name Soldier or Sailor Name Envelope Number
Adams, John John Adams W23415
Allen, John Soldier John Allen (n.n.)
Allerton, John John Allerton R151
Andrason, Ezekiel Ezekial Andrason W23456
Andrews, Robert Soldier Robert Andrews R12123
Applewhaite, John Sailor John Applewhaite R12129
Archer, John Sailor John Archer W5348
Armistead, Thomas Soldier Thomas Armistead R12157
Armistead, William Soldier William Armistead R12155
Bailey, John Soldier
Banks, James Sailor James Banks W5762
Barnes, James James Barnes S39968
Barron, James Sailor James Barron W12264
Barron, Richard Sailor Richard Barron R5
Barron, Samuel Sailor Samuel Barron R6
Bartlett, Philip Sailor Philip Bartlett R7
Bayly, Laban Sailor Laban Bayly R1
Baytop, John Soldier John Baytop R19357
Becker, Barent Barent Becker S12193
Beckwith, William William Beckwith S2071
Bennett, Thomas Thomas Bennett S12154
Bennett , William Sailor William Bennett R8
Berry, William William Berry S2371
Bishop, Benjamin Benjamin Bishop S32119
Blair, John
Blakley, Obed Obed Blakley S44629
Boas, Henry Henry Boas S16053
Bonewell, Thomas Sailor Thomas Bonnewell R10
Booth, William Sailor William Booth R11
Boush, Charles Sailor Charles S. Boush R12
Boush, Robert Soldier Robert Boush R19366
Boyd, James James Boyd S32127
Brashears, Richard Soldier Richard Brashears R12756
Bray, Elisha C.
Brenton, John John Brenton S16059
Bressie, Thomas Soldier Thomas Bressie R12763
Britain, John Sailor John Brittain R13
Brophy, Michael
Brooke, Walter Sailor Walter Brooke R14
Brown, John John Brown R1277
Brown, Robert Soldier Robert Brown R12652
Browning, Issac Soldier Isaac Browning R12796
Calvitt, Joseph Soldier Joseph Calvert R12980
Cannon, Jesse Sailor Jesse Cannon R19
Cannon, Luke Sailor Luke Cannon S46373
Cary, Samuel Soldier Samuel Cary R13013
Catlett, George Sailor George Catlett W2524
Chamberlain, George Sailor George Chamberlaine R23
Chandler, Thomas Sailor Thomas Chandler R24
Chapline, Abraham Soldier Abraham Chapline R13134
Cherry, William Soldier Willaim Cherry R13143
Clower, Daniel Daniel Clower S37865
Cole, Huldah (widow of Jacob) Jacob Cole W18930
Cordill, James James Cordill S30344
Cordill, Stephen Stephen Cordill R2315
Cornett, William William Cornett W6723
Courtney, James James Courtney S9265
Cowen, William William Cowen S2137
Cox, John Sailor John Cox S8223
Crawley, Samuel Soldier Samuel Crawley R13467
Creed, Colby Colby Creed S32194
Crew, John Sailor
Crockett, Anthony Soldier Anthony Crockett S10492
Crockett, Joseph Soldier Joseph Crockett S46377
Crump, Abner Soldier Abner Crump R13459
Dabney, Charles Soldier Charles Dabney R13624
Dalton, Valentine Thomas Soldier Valentine Thomas Dalton W3610
Daring, Henry Soldier Henry Daring R2898
Deaver, William William Deaver S12754
De Kay, Charles Sailor Charles De Kay R34
Diall, Daniel Daniel Diall S41506
Dick, Alexander Soldier Alexander Dick R13751
Dickason, Samual Samuel Dickason W285
Digges, Dudley, Sr. Soldier Dudley Digges, Sr. S8328
Diggs, Edward Soldier Edward Diggs R13760
Ditto, Francis Franz Dido W7017
Dobson, Robert Sailor Robert Dobson R36
Doty, Nathaniel Nathaniel Doty R3032
Dougherty, James Sailor James Dougherty R13659
Edinburgh, Sewell Soldier Sewell Edinburg R13947
Edmundson, Benjamin Soldier Benjamin Edmondson R13953
Elder, Ephraim Soldier Ephraim Elder W7471
Elliott, Bradford W.
Elliott, George Sailor George Elliott R38
Ellis, Abner S.
Evans, Andrew Andrew Evans S3341
Evans, Jesse Soldier Jesse Evans S15826
Evans, Joseph Soldier
Ewell, Charles Soldier Charles Ewell W9432
Ewell, Thomas Soldier Thomas Ewell R14052
Field, Benjamin Soldier Benjamin Field W3009
Field, Theophilus Sailor Theophilus Field R60
Fierer, Charles Soldier Charles Fierer R22811
Fleet, John Soldier John Fleet R14208
Foushee, William Soldier William Foushee R14223
Fox, Joseph Joseph Fox W7292
Galt, John Minson Soldier John Minson Galt R14353
Garberick, John
George, Jesse Sailor Jesse George R51
George, Robert Soldier Robert George R14396
Gibbs, Churchhill Soldier Churchhill Gibbs S46002
Gibbs, Harod Harod Gibbs W17947
Gibson, John Sailor John Gibson R52
Glenn, Bernard Soldier Bernard Glenn R14477
Godwin, Joseph Sailor Joseph Godwin R53
Goffaghan, Laban Sailor Laban Goffigan R54
Goosely, George Sailor George Goosely R55
Graves, William Soldier William Graves R14570
Graves, William Sailor William Graves (n.n.)
Gray, James Sailor
Green, Samuel Ball Samuel B. Green S14649
Grier, Charles Soldier Charles Grier R14616
Griffin, Corbin Sailor Corbin Griffin R56
Gunsaulis, James Soldier James Gunsaulis S16397
Hall, Robert Sailor Robert Hall R40
Hamestreet, Isaac Isaac Hamestreet W17058
Hamilton, Thomas Soldier Thomas Hamilton R14776
Hardyman, John Soldier John Hardyman R14719
Hardyman, John Sailor John Hardyman R14719
Harris, John Sailor John Harris R41
Harrison, Richard Soldier Richard Harrison R14762
Hay, Joseph Soldier Joseph Hay R14762
Hayes, Thomas Soldier Thomas Hayes W20375
Healy, Samuel Sailor Samuel Healey R42
Henry, Joseph Joseph Henry W10096
Herbert, Pascow Sailor Pasco Herbert R43
Hinton, Lewis Sailor Lewis Hinton S10831
Howland, Abraham Abraham Howland S28767
Humphlett, Thomas Sailor Thomas Humphlett R45
Humphrey, Merrit Merrit Humphrey W5303
Ingraham, Jonathan Jonathan Ingraham S30505
Jackson, Samuel Samual Jackson W945
James, Michael Sailor Michael James R47
Jennings, John Sailor John Jennings R48
Jennings, William Soldier William Jennings R15422
Johnston, Gideon Soldier Gideon Johnston S38089
Johnston, William Sailor William E. Johnson R49
Jones, Charles Sailor Charles Jones R50
Jones, David David Jones S17517
Jones, Elias Elias Jones W1040
Kautzman, John V. Sailor John Valentine Kautzman R59
Keller, Abraham Soldier Abraham Keller R15580
Kelly, Thady Solder Thady Kelly R15579
Kemp, James Soldier James Kemp R15581
Kennedy, James Soldier James Kennedy R15594
Knight
Land, Lewis Lewis Land W26200
Landrum, Thomas Sailor Thomas Landrum R61
Laughlin, James
Lipscomb, Yancy Soldier
Litchfield, Caleb Caleb Litchfield S13751
Livingston, Justice Sailor Justice Livingston R64
Ludington, Daniel Daniel Ludington W27444
Lyon, John Sailor John Lyon R66
Madden, William William Madden W9902
Malcom, James Sailor James Malcom R68
Mallory, John John Mallory W3436
Markham, James Sailor James Markham R72
Marshall, Humphrey Soldier Humphrey M arshall S31234
Marshall, James M. Soldier James M. Marshall S7173
Marshall, Jenifer Sailor Jenepher Marshall R70
Marshall, Joseph Sailor Joseph Marshall R69
Marshall, Thomas Soldier Thomas Marshall R16057
Marston, John Soldier John Marston R16031
Martin, William William Martin S9396
Massenburg, Alexander Sailor Alexander Massenburg R16060
Maxwell, James Sailor James Maxwell R73
Mays, Benjamin Benjamin Mays R7054
Mazarett, John Soldier John Mazarett R16059
McClurg, James Soldier
McClurg, Walter Sailor Walter McClurg R66117
McGavock, Hugh Soldier Hugh McGavock S16948
McNickle, John Sailor John McNickle R74
Minor, Thomas Soldier Thomas Minor W5374
Montgomery, James Soldier James Montgomery R16521
Moore, Asa Asa Moore W3030
Moore, John Sailor John Moore R78
Moore, Peter Soldier Peter Moore W25716
Muzzy, Robert Robert Muzzy S430573
Nash, William William Nash S4597
Neighbors, Nathan Nathan Nabors S35534
Nelson, John Soldier John Nelson W5414
Newton, John John Newton W9589
Nicholson, Henry W. Soldier Henry W. Nicholson R16768
Nicolson, Robert Soldier Robert Nicholson W5422
Orton, Darius Darius Orton S14055
Palmer, John John Palmer S8928
Parker, Richard Sailor Richard Parker R81
Parker, William H. Sailor William H. Parker R82
Partridge, Asa Asa Partridge W16053
Pasteur, John Sailor John Pasteur R83
Peyton, John Soldier John Peyton, BLWt 1641–300
Piper, John Soldier John Piper R17110
Polk, Joab Joab Polk S36236
Pope, Matthew Soldier Matthew Pope R17152
Quarles, Henry Soldier Henry Quarles R17253
Quarles, James Soldier James Quarles R17254
Quarles, Wharton Solder Wharton Quarles R17252
Quirk, Thomas Soldier Thomas Quirk W5958
Ravenscroft, Thomas Soldier Thomas Ravenscraft S1248
Rey, Andrea Soldier Andrea Rey R17309
Reynolds, John Sailor John Reynolds R85
Reynolds, William Soldier Willam Reynolds R17380
Ridgeway, Isaac Isaac Ridgeway S23874
Riely or Riley, John Soldier John Riely S31331
Roberts, John Soldier John Roberts R17483
Roberts, William William Roberts R17484
Robertson, Zachariah Zachariah Robertson S35632
Robinson, Charles Charles Robinson W9267
Robinson, John John Robinson W24798
Roe, William Sailor William Roe R87
Rogers, John Sailor John Rogers R88
Rogers, John Soldier John Rogers (n.n.)
Ross, Lemuel Lemuel Ross S33577
Rucker, Angus Soldier Angus Rucker S19068
Runnals, Jesse Jesse Runnals W4580
Rusk, James James Rusk S40369
Russell, Charles Soldier Charles Russell R17603
Russey, James James Russey W1697
Sacrey, James James Sacrey S35646
Sales Charles
Saunders, Joseph Sailor Joseph Saunders S17073
Saunders, William Sailor William Saunders R89
Schoolcraft, Lawrence Lawrence Schoolcraft S42260
Selden, Wilson Cary Soldier Wilson Cary Selden S4815
Severance, Samuel Samuel Severance W3118
Shaffer, John John Shaffer S3899
Shea, Patrick
Simpson, Hancock Sailor
Skinner, William Sailor William Skinner R92
Slaughter, James Soldier James Slaughter S31370
Slaughter, William Soldier William Slaughter R17891
Smith, Granville Soldier Granville Smith R17957
Southworth, William William Southworth S40479
Speake, Joseph Sailor Joseph Speake R95
Spencer, William Soldier William Spencer R18076
Steele, William Sailor William Steele R96
Stone, Rowland Rowland Stone S1257
Story, Daniel Daniel Story R10233
Straley, Andrew Andrew Straley S38406
Swope, John Sailor John Swope R98
Tabb, Augustin Soldier Augustin Tabb R18331
Taylor, Richard Sailor Richard Taylor S25873
Thomas, Mark Soldier Mark Thomas R18446
Thompson, Sherod Sherod Thompson S32012
Tinsley, Samuel Soldier Samuel Tinsley S6243
Travis, Edward Sailor Edward Travis R103
Triplett, George Soldier George Triplett W607
Tupman, John Sailor John Tupman R104
Turbyfill, John John Turbyfill S7770
Turnbull, Stephen Soldier Stephen Turbull R18602
Upshaw, Thomas Soldier Thomas Upshaw R18623
Valentine, Edward Soldier Edward Valentine R18626
Valentine, Josiah Soldier Josiah Valentine R18628
Vawter, William Soldier William Vawter R10921
Vowles, Charles Soldier Charles, Vowles R18701
Vowles, Henry Soldier Henry Vowles R18700
Walls, George Soldier George Walls R18785
Ward, Elnathan
Watlington, John Soldier John Watlington W4097
Welch, Nathaniel Soldier Nathaniel Welch R18894
Westcott, Wright Sailor Wright Westcott R106
Wheaton, Reuben Reuben Wheaton S24010
White, Thomas Soldier
White, William S. Sailor William S. White R107
Wilkerson, William William Wilkerson S32602
Wilkinson, Ichabod
Wilkinson, Reuben Reuben Wilkinson S44214
Williams, John Soldier John Williams W6511
Williams, John Soldier John Williams R19105
Williams, Lew Lew Williams W1344
Wilson, Thomas Soldier Thomas Wilson W9007
Wilson, Willis Sailor Willis Wilson R109
Withers, James Soldier James Withers W4399
Woneycott, Edward Sailor Edward Woneycutt R110
Woodson, Frederick Soldier Frederick Woodson R19214
Worthington, Edward Solder Edward Worthington R19205
Wray, Henry Henry Wray W6380
Yeates, John Soldier John Yeates S7988