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Military Resources: Civil War

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NARA Resources

Prologue Articles
"All for a Sword: The Military Treason Trial of Sarah Hutchins"
Jonathan W. White's article about Sarah Hutchins's trial for treason.
"The Army Civil War Campaign Medal"
Civil War origins of the Medal of Honor are noted and NARA researchers are given guidance on finding records of the recipients.
"The Army Medal of Honor: The First Fifty-five Years"
An article by Mark C. Mollan.
"Black Men in Navy Blue during the Civil War"
A history of black participants in the Navy during the Civil War. The article by Joseph P. Reidy was published in the Fall 2001 edition of Prologue.
"Civil War and Later Navy Personnel Records at the National Archives, 1861-1924"
This article by Lee D. Bacon appeared Prologue in 1995.
"Civil War Cat-and-Mouse Game: Researching Blockade-Runners at the National Archives"
This article by NARA staffer Rebecca Livingston focuses on Civil War blockade runners.
"Civil War Draft Records: Exemptions and Enrollments"
This article by Michael T. Meier appeared in Prologue in 1994.
"Civil War Records: A War by Any Other Name"
This article sheds light on the development of the controversy about the name of the conflict in North America of 1861-1865.
"Civil War Records: An Introduction and Invitation"
This article by Michael P. Musick appeared in Prologue in Summer 1995.
"Cold Mountain's Inman: Fact Versus Fiction "
A comparison between a fictional story and the reality revealed in the records.
"Confederate Medical Personnel"
An article by DeAnne Blanton from Prologue, Spring 1994.
"Defunct Strategy and Divergent Goals: The Role of the United States Navy along the Eastern Seaboard during the Civil War"
This article on the U.S. Navy's role in the Civil War appeared in the Fall 2001 issue of Prologue.
"The Diplomats Who Sank a Fleet: The Confederacy's Undelivered European Fleet and the Union Consular Service"
This article on the fleet ordered from the British by the Confederacy appeared in the Fall 2001 issue of Prologue.
"Enhancing Your Family Tree with Civil War Maps"
Advice on using NARA's Civil War maps for genealogical research.
"Face to Face with History"
Article from 2009 about African American surgeons during the Civil War.
"Honorable Reports: Battles, Campaigns, and Skirmishes: Civil War Records and Research"
Michael P. Musick gives advice on conducting Civil War research.
"'I am still in the land of the living:' The Medical Case of Civil War Veteran Edson D. Bemis"
Rebecca K. Sharp and Nancy L. Wing's article about Civil War medical records.
"Income Tax Records of the Civil War Years"
This article by Cynthia G. Fox appeared in the Winter 1986 issue of Prologue.
"The Little Regiment: Civil War Units and Commands"
Michael P. Musick's article about Civil War regiments.
"Pieces of History: General Robert E. Lee's Parole and Citizenship"
The story of General Robert E. Lee's Amnesty Oath and the eventual restoration of his United States citizenship.
"'A Reasonable Degree of Promptitude': Civil War Pension Application Processing, 1861–1885"
An article by Claire Prechtel-Kluskens.
"Researching African-Americans in the U.S. Army, 1866-1890: Buffalo Soldiers and Black Infantrymen"
This article by Trevor K. Plante appeared in the Spring 2001 edition of Prologue.
"Researching Confederate Marines in the Civil War"
Tips for researching an often overlooked group of Civil War servicemen.
"The Shady Side of the Family Tree: Civil War Union Court-Martial Case Files"
This article on court-martial cases during the Civil War, written by Trevor K. Plante, appeared in Prologue in 1998.
"'Sweltering with Treason:' The Civil War Trials of William Matthew Merrick"
The story of William Matthew Merrick, a federal judge accused of disloyalty during the Civil War.
"'Their . . . Bedding is wet Their floors are damp:' 'Pre-Bureau' Records and Civil War African American Genealogy"
This article by Rebecca K. Sharp discusses Civil War records of African American genealogical interest.
"Out of War, a New Nation"
An article by James M. McPherson that discusses the impact of the Civil War.
"War in an Age of Wonders: Civil War Arms and Equipment"
A discussion about advances in military technology during the Civil War.
"Women Soldiers of the Civil War"
This article by DeAnne Blanton appeared Prologue in 1993. It appears on the website in three parts: Part I, Part 2, and Part 3.

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Other NARA Resources

Civil War and Reconstruction (1850-1877)
This NARA site features an online version of an American Originals exhibit.

Civil War Records
This NARA site is a guide to researching Union and Confederate soldiers.

Committees Relating to the Civil War and Reconstruction (1861-73)
This NARA web site on the Records of the United States House of Representatives is maintained by the Center for Legislative Archives.

Compiled Service Records for the Civil War
This guide to microfilm publications is featured on a NARA web site maintained by ALIC: Archives Library Information Center.

"Exploring the Life and History of the 'Buffalo Soldiers'"
This article, by NARA staff member Walter Hill, is about the black troops during the Civil War period.

The Fight for Equal Rights: Black Soldiers in the Civil War
Part of NARA's 'Teaching with Documents' series, this lesson correlates to the National History Standards.

Guides to Civil War Records in NARA: Preliminary Inventories in the National Archives Library
NARA web site maintained by ALIC: Archives Library Information Center.

Guides to National Archives Microfilm Publications of the Records of the Civil War Era
NARA web site maintained by ALIC: Archives Library Information Center.

"Headstones of Union Civil War Veterans"
This article by Claire Prechtel-Kluskens appeared in NARA's March 1998 The Record.

Letters, Telegrams,and Photographs Illustrating Factors that Affected the Civil War
This Teaching with Documents site features a lesson with documents illustrating the Civil War.

Mathew Brady Civil War Photographs
The National Archives has digitized over 6,000 images from the series Mathew Brady Photographs of Civil War-Era Personalities and Scenes. These images have been uploaded to NARA's Flickr page.

Missouri's Union Provost Marshal Papers, 1861-1866
The Provost Marshal Papers for the state of Missouri are part of Record Group 109, War Department Collection of Confederate Records in the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). This online database created by the Missouri State Archives is an index of the Missouri portion of the collection.

Preserving the Legacy of the United States Colored Troops
NARA volunteer Budge Weidman compiled this Teaching with Documents lesson plan.

Records of the Civil War Special Agencies of the Treasury Department
NARA guide to Record Group 366.

Records of the Provost Marshal General's Bureau (Civil War)
NARA guide to Record Group 110.

Reference Books on the Civil War
The books on this highly selective list are shelved in ALIC: Archives Library Information Center.

State Adjutant Generals' Reports for the Civil War in the National Archives Library
Civil War State Adjutant Generals' Reports held by ALIC: Archives Library Information Center.

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Other Resources

Band Music from the Civil War Era
From the Library of Congress Music Division, this site introduces visitors to the musical scores, recordings, photographs, and essays from both Union and Confederate Armies of the Civil War.

Black Dispatches: Black American Contributions to Union Intelligence During the Civil War
This article appeared in the Winter 1998-1999 edition of Studies in Intelligence, a publication of the CIA's Center for the Study of Intelligence.

Civil War at the Smithsonian
This Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery site gives illustrative insight into the Civil War.

Civil War Glass Negatives and Related Prints
From the Library of Congress, "This online collection provides access to about 7,000 different views and portraits made during the American Civil War (1861-1865) and its immediate aftermath. The images represent the original glass plate negatives made under the supervision of Mathew Brady and Alexander Gardner as well as the photographic prints in the Civil War photographs file in the Prints & Photographs Reading Room."

Civil War Maps
The Library of Congress Geography and Map Division, the Virginia Historical Society, and the Library of Virginia collaborated to create this online exhibit.

Civil War Service Database
This database is presented by the Alabama Department of Archives and History.

Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System (CWSS)
This National Park Service site features a database containing information about the men who served in the Union and Confederate armies during the Civil War. It also includes regimental histories, links to descriptions of significant battles, and selected lists of prisoner-of-war records and cemetery records.

Civil War Treasures from the New-York Historical Society
An online cooperative project of the Library of Congress and the New-York Historical Society. Pictorial items in the digitized Civil War collection include: photographs, posters, etchings, and the first and only issue of The Prison Times handwritten by Confederate prisoners.

“Interruptions and Embarrassments”: The Smithsonian during the Civil War
A revised version of a talk by Kathleen W. Dorman that describes the effects of the Civil War on the Smithsonian Institution.

Mary Henry: Eyewitnesses to the Civil War in the City of Washington
Diary of Mary Henry, child of Joseph Henry, the first secretary of the Smithsonian Institution.

Mathew Brady's Portraits
Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery site.

Medal of Honor Recipients: Civil War
U.S. Army Center Center of Military History site that provides the names of Medal of Honor recipients and the actions that are commemorated.

Records of Officers and Men of New Jersey in The Civil War, 1861-1865
This digital version of the classic works by William S. Stryker is presented by the New Jersey State Library.

Symbols of Battle: Civil War Flags in NPS Collections
National Park Service site on flags as symbols in battle.

U.S. Civil War Center
The Louisiana State University's Center is dedicated to promoting the study of the Civil War from the perspectives of all professions, occupations and academic disciplines; and locating, indexing, and making available all appropriate private and public data on the Internet regarding the Civil War.

U.S. Civil War History: Selected Primary and Secondary Sources
University of Pennsylvania site features an extensive bibliography including internet resources and websites.

U.S. Civil War Regimental Histories in the Library of Congress
This finding aid focuses on Civil War regimental histories located in the Library of Congress's general collections and is arranged by Union and Confederate state regiments.

Washington During the Civil War: The Diary of Horatio Nelson Taft
This Library of Congress webpage presents the diary of an examiner for the U.S. Patent Office who lived in Washington D.C. Of special interest is Taft's description of Lincoln's assassination, including the reports of Taft's son who was an attending physician at Ford's Theater the night Lincoln was shot.

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