Records of the AGO, 1780s-1917
(Record Group 94)
ca. 1775-1928, 1961-96 (bulk 1783-1920)
Table of Contents
- 94.1 ADMINISTRATIVE HISTORY
- 94.2 GENERAL RECORDS
ca. 1775-1928, 1961-1996 (bulk 1784-1920)
- 94.2.1 Correspondence
- 94.2.2 Orders, muster rolls, and returns
- 94.2.3 Records relating to regular army personnel
- 94.2.4 Records relating to volunteers and volunteer organizations
- 94.2.5 Records relating to wars
- 94.2.6 Records relating to the U.S. Military Academy
- 94.2.7 Other records
- 94.3 RECORDS OF THE APPOINTMENT, COMMISSION, AND PERSONAL (ACP)
BRANCH ca. 1775-1917 (bulk 1783-1917)
- 94.4 RECORDS OF THE ENLISTED BRANCH (EB)
1848-1912 (bulk 1848-89)
- 94.5 RECORDS OF THE RECRUITING DIVISION
- 94.6 RECORDS OF THE VOLUNTEER SERVICE (VS) DIVISION
- 94.7 RECORDS OF THE COLORED TROOPS DIVISION
- 94.8 RECORDS OF THE FUND BRANCH AND ITS PREDECESSORS
- 94.9 RECORDS OF THE BOUNTY AND CLAIMS DIVISION
- 94.9.1 General records
- 94.9.2 Records of slave claims commissions
- 94.10 RECORDS OF OTHER DIVISIONS
ca. 1775-1917 (bulk 1800-1916)
- 94.10.1 Records of the Deserters Division
- 94.10.2 Records of the Military Prison Record Division
- 94.10.3 Records of the Military Reservation Division
- 94.10.4 Records of the Old Records Division
- 94.10.5 Precedent files of various divisions
- 94.11 OTHER AGO RECORDS
- 94.12 RECORDS OF THE RECORD AND PENSION OFFICE (RPO) OF THE WAR
- 94.12.1 General records
- 94.12.2 Compiled military service records
- 94.12.3 Cards containing medical records and vital statistics
- 94.12.4 Records relating to medical personnel
- 94.12.5 Other medical records
- 94.13 RECORDS OF THE WAR RECORDS OFFICE (WRO) OF THE WAR
- 94.14 CARTOGRAPHIC RECORDS (GENERAL)
- 94.15 SOUND RECORDINGS (GENERAL)
- 94.16 STILL PICTURES (GENERAL)
Established: In the War Department under direction of the Chief of Staff, by General Order 46, War Department, March 4, 1907, pursuant to the Army Appropriation Act (34 Stat. 1158), March 2, 1907.
- Adjutant General of the Continental Army (1775-83)
- Adjutant and Inspector (1792-1813)
- Adjutant General's Department (1813-21)
- Adjutant General's Office (1821-1904)
- Military Secretary's Office (1904-7)
Functions: Provided administrative and support services to the War Department. Maintained personnel records. Recorded, authenticated, and communicated orders, instructions, and regulations. Issued commissions. Compiled and issued the Army Register and the Army List and Directory. Consolidated and maintained the returns of the army and militia. Managed the recruiting service. Maintained the noncurrent records of the War Department.
Abolished: By memorandum of the U.S. Army Chief of Staff, November 17, 1986, removing the Adjutant General from the Army Staff, and assigning title and lineage to the Director of Personnel Service Support, Military Personnel Center (MILPERCEN).
Successor Agencies: Army records management program policy direction assigned to the Assistant Chief of Staff for Information Management (ACSIM), effective September 30, 1985, by message of Brig. Gen. R.M. Bunker, Director of Management, DTG 132108Z, September 13, 1985; and to Information Management Support Agency (IMSA), ACSIM, with operational responsibility vested in the Army Records Management Operations Office (ARMOO), IMSA, effective February 20, 1986, by ACSIM memorandum DAIM-ZB, and supporting message of Col. Thomas F. Sikora, Policies and Strategies Directorate, ACSIM, DTG 201334Z, same date. Operational responsibility assigned to United States Army Information Systems Command (USAISC), retroactive to October 1, 1986, by Permanent Orders 127-1, Headquarters USAISC, November 14, 1986. Program policy direction assigned to Directorate of Information Systems for Command, Control, Communications, and Computers (DISC4) retroactive to April 1, 1987, by Headquarters Department of the Army Letter 10-87-4, April 22, 1987, implementing the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act (100 Stat. 992), October 1, 1986. The Institute of Heraldry assigned to MILPERCEN by memorandum of the Chief of Staff, November 17, 1986. Declassification and historical access assigned to the U.S. Army Center of Military History by memorandum of agreement between Brig. Gen. William A. Stofft, Chief of Military History, and Lt. Gen. Thurman D. Rodgers, DISC4, May 6, 1987.
Finding Aids: Lucille H. Pendell and Elizabeth Bethel, comps., Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Adjutant General's Office, PI 17 (1949).
Related Records: Record copies of publications of the Adjutant
General's Office in RG 287, Publications of the U.S. Government.
Records of the Office of the Secretary of War, RG 107.
Records of the Headquarters of the Army, RG 108.
War Department Collection of Confederate Records, RG 109.
Records of U.S. Army Continental Commands, 1821-1920, RG 393.
Records of the Adjutant General's Office, 1917- , RG 407.
History: Position of Adjutant General of the Continental Army established by a resolution of the Second Continental Congress, June 16, 1775, and abolished effective with the disbanding of the revolutionary army, November 5, 1783. Administrative functions in the War Department delegated to an officer known as the Adjutant and Inspector, by an act of March 5, 1792 (1 Stat. 241). Adjutant General's Department established by an act of March 3, 1813 (2 Stat. 819), under an officer, designated the Adjutant General, who also served as the Inspector General. An act of March 2, 1821 (3 Stat. 615), established a separate Adjutant General's Office to head the Adjutant General's Department. AGO combined with the Record and Pension Office of the War Department to form the Military Secretary's Office by General Order 76, War Department, April 28, 1904, under authority of the Army Appropriation Act (33 Stat. 262), April 23, 1904. AGO restored, 1907. SEE 94.1.
Textual Records: Correspondence and other records ("Post Revolutionary War Papers") documenting the service, pay, and supply of the regular and volunteer armies and the state militia troops, and the construction of military installations, 1784- 1815. Letters sent, 1800-89. Letters received, 1805-89, with registers, 1814-89, and indexes, 1812-89. Telegrams sent, 1864- 1904. Cablegrams sent, 1899-1912, and received, 1901-14. General correspondence ("Document File"), 1890-1917 (2,967 ft.), with record cards and an index. Records concerning the appointment and commissioning of Reserve Corps officers, 1917. Reports to the Secretary of War, 1825-70.
Microfilm Publications: M182, M565, M566, M567, M619, M666, M689, M698, M711, M725, M904, M927, M983.
Sound Recordings (1 item): "U.S. Army and Navy Calls, Cavalry and Artillery," a gramophone recording of bugle calls, 1896, from AGO general correspondence file 71928, March 12, 1898.
Textual Records: Manuscript and printed orders, 1792-1910 (315 ft.), including general, special, and field orders and circulars, with indexes, of the War Department; of armies, brigades, divisions, and corps; and of military divisions, departments, districts, and posts. Muster rolls of regular army organizations, 1784-1912 (1,278 ft.). Muster rolls of volunteer organizations, 1784-1901 (5,270 ft.), documenting service in war with the Northwest Indians (1790-95), Creek War (1813-14), other Indian wars (1811-58), Cherokee Removal (1835-38), War of 1812 (1812- 15), Mexican War (1846-48), Civil War (1861-65), Spanish-American War (1898), and Philippine Insurrection (1899-1901). Returns, 1790-1916 (1,575 ft.), of departments; territorial divisions, departments, and districts; military posts; and army commands in War of 1812, Mexican War, and Civil War. Station books, 1861- 1915, of troops, regular army officers and organizations, and volunteer officers. Strength reports of regular army and volunteer forces, 1890-1917.
Microfilm Publications: M29, M617, M654, M665, M690, M691, M727, M728, M744, M851, M852, M1094, T1085, T1114, T1115.
Textual Records: Registers of enlistments, 1798-1914. Enlistment papers, 1798-1912. Orders, discharges, medical and burial records, and other records concerning regular army personnel ("Personal Papers"), 1812-1912. Certificates of disability, 1812- 99. Records relating to deceased soldiers ("Final Statements"), 1862-99. Registers of discharges, 1872-83. Reports of physical examinations of candidates for admission to the U.S. Military Academy, 1861-1908. Recommendations for promotions, 1917. Record of retired men, 1915-20. Register of prisoners, 1879-1901.
Microfilm Publications: M233.
Textual Records: Descriptive books, Mexican War, 1846-48. Regimental records, including descriptive rolls, order and letter books, and morning reports, of volunteer organizations, Civil War, 1861-65. Regimental and company books of volunteer organizations, Spanish-American War, 1898, and Philippine Insurrection, 1899-1901; and of the Puerto Rican Regiment, 1899- 1901. Registers of deceased volunteer soldiers, 1861-64. Histories of volunteer organizations, 1861-63. Registers of discharges, 1861-66.
Textual Records: Records of the War of 1812 relating to location, parole, and exchange of prisoners, 1812-15. Records concerning the Mexican War, including letters sent and received by officers, 1845-48; orders, 1845-48; and records of customhouses at San Francisco, CA, and at Matamoros, Tampico, and Vera Cruz, Mexico, 1847-48. Records relating to the Civil War, including U.S. Army generals' service reports, 1864-87; records relating to prisoners at Dry Tortugas, FL, 1863-71, and to Indian prisoners, 1860-65; case files of investigations of alleged fraudulent and subversive activities during the Civil War ("Turner-Baker Records"), 1861- 66; pardon petitions and related records ("Amnesty Papers"), 1865-66; and the greater part of a collection ("Generals' Papers and Books") of official records and personal papers of various generals and other officers, 1813-1928. Correspondence and other records relating to the Spanish-American War and the Philippine Insurrection, 1898-1901.
Microfilm Publications: M254, M719, M797, M1003, M1094.
History: Established at West Point, NY, as a War Department organization, by an act of March 16, 1802 (2 Stat. 137). Under Chief of Engineers, 1802-66; Inspector General of the Army, Office of the Secretary of War (OSW), 1866-71; and Military Academy Office, OSW, 1871-77. With Post of West Point, administered as a separate military department under General-in- Chief of the Army, 1877-82. Under Secretary of War, 1882-1947; and Secretary of the Army, 1947-present.
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1812-94, 1898-1904. Letters received, with reports and related papers, 1819-1904. General and special orders, 1814-1915. Annual and semiannual rolls of cadets, 1812-1915 (with gaps). Merit rolls, 1818-66. Class reports and conduct rolls, 1820-25, 1831-94. Records relating to examinations, 1816-1900. Registers of cadets, 1803-94. Cadet warrants, 1895-1917. Cadet application papers, 1814-66, with index. Register of candidates for appointment, 1866-94. Records relating to unsuccessful applications, 1866-76. Records relating to the Board of Visitors, 1823-1904.
Microfilm Publications: M91, M688, M1002.
Related Records: Records of the U.S. Military Academy, RG 404. Record copies of publications of the U.S. Military Academy in RG 287, Publications of the U.S. Government.
Textual Records: Administrative precedent file ("Frech File," compiled 1892-1917), ca. 1775-1917, with subject indexes and lists of subject headings. Statements of AGO organization, 1882- 1903. Accounts current, 1863-99. Record of disbursements, 1851- 62. Registers of AGO civilian clerks, 1861-72, 1881-82. Records relating to the Government Hospital for the Insane, including records of admission, 1862-1917; and registers of soldiers declared to be insane, 1853-1919, with index. Provost Fund records, including letters sent, 1864-81, and received, 1864-83; records of fines received, 1865-80; vouchers, 1865-79; and bills, memorandums, orders, and circulars, 1872-83. National Land Defense Board reports, 1907-15, with index. Reference aids and other special information files, 1790-1918.
Microfilm Publications: T36.
Textual Records: Case files, 1961-96.
History: Established as the Commission Branch, January 1, 1863, to administer promotions, resignations, discharges, retirements, assignments, and details of regular army and volunteer officers, hospital stewards, ordnance sergeants, and post and regimental sutlers. Designated ACP Branch, January 1, 1871. Maintained personnel correspondence until July 1894, after which such records were filed in the AGO document file (SEE 94.2.1).
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1851-99. Letters sent relating to nominations, 1837-76. Letters received ("ACP Files"), 1863-94, with registers, 1863-89, and indexes, 1863-94. Applications for appointment, 1871-80, with registers and indexes. Resolutions confirming appointments and promotions ("Senate Rolls"), 1804-93. Commissions, 1812-1902. Registers of commissions, 1792-1812. Letters of appointment, 1829-95, and promotion, 1829-77. Manuscript and printed copies of the Army Register, 1800-97, and the Volunteer Army Register, 1861-65. Roster of officers, 1783- 1826. Miscellaneous personnel registers, 1814-1917. Personal reports of retired officers, 1864-1913. Precedent files (portions of "Brinkerhoff File" and of "Kohr File"), ca. 1775-1917.
Microfilm Publications: M1064, M1125.
History: Established December 1862. Assumed functions of the Recruiting Division, 1882 (SEE 94.5). Responsible for recruitment, discharge, transfer, granting of furloughs, and other activities relating to regular army and volunteer enlisted personnel. Functions concerning volunteers transferred to newly established Record and Pension Division of the War Department, 1889 (SEE 94.12); and those concerning regular army transferred to Principal Record Division of AGO, 1890.
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1863-89, with indexes. Letters received ("EB Files"), 1862-89, with registers and indexes. Records concerning enlisted men, compiled prior to EB establishment ("Addison Files"), including letters sent, 1851-52, 1860-62; and letters received, 1848-62. Index to officers' files in Volunteer Service Division (SEE 94.6) and EB Branch, 1888-89. Precedent files, 1861-1912.
History: Established July 1, 1862, to administer matters involving army recruitment. Abolished 1882, with functions assumed by Enlisted Branch (SEE 94.4).
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1825-82, with indexes, 1863-81. Letters received, 1862-82, with registers, 1862-1913 (with gaps), and indexes, 1862-82, 1885-94. Records relating to disabilities, 1864-92. Reports of state adjutants general, 1862-64. Miscellaneous registers concerning recruits, 1814-91. Records of recruiting depots, 1878-1909, including letters sent, order books, and morning reports.
History: Also known as VS Branch. Established October 1861, with responsibility for authorization, recruitment, service, and discharge of volunteer troops. Assumed functions of Colored Troops Division, 1888 (SEE 94.7). Abolished, with functions transferred to newly established Record and Pension Division of the War Department, July 16, 1889 (SEE 94.12).
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1861-89, with indexes. Letters received ("VS Files"), 1861-89, with registers and indexes. Index to officers' files in VS Division and Enlisted Branch (SEE 94.4), 1888-89. Precedent files, 1861-69.
History: Established by General Order 143, War Department, May 22, 1863. Administered matters pertaining to recruitment, organization, and service of the U.S. Colored Troops. Assumed functions of the Freedmen's Branch, June 1879. Abolished 1888, with functions transferred to Volunteer Service Division (SEE 94.6).
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1863-88, with indexes. Letters
received, 1863-94 (bulk 1863-88), with indexes and registers,
1863-88. Letters sent and received relating to recruiting, 1864-
68. Applications for officer appointments, 1863-65. Registers,
rosters, and officers' commissions, 1863-68. Registers of
officers' resignations, 1863-66; and of troops "slave or free on
or before April 19, 1861," 1869. Record of enlistments, 1869-87.
Record of division employees, 1871-89. Descriptive lists of
volunteers, 1864. "The Negro in the Military Service of the
United States," 1888, a compilation of records (1639-1886)
relating to military service of blacks.
Microfilm Publications: M858, M1659.
Related Records: Records of the Freedmen's Branch of AGO in RG 105, Records of the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands.
History: Drafted Bureau established 1863, with responsibility for administering funds and property associated with rendezvous for drafted forces and with civil and military prisoners. Redesignated General Courts Martial (GCM) Division, March 1, 1866. GCM Division redesignated Fund Branch, 1871. Fund Branch abolished 1883, with functions transferred to Miscellaneous Branch, whose records were integrated into AGO central records.
Textual Records: Records of the Drafted Bureau, consisting of letters sent and received, 1863-66, with registers and indexes; and consolidated reports of rendezvous for drafted forces, 1863- 65. Records of the General Courts Martial Division, consisting of letters sent, 1866-71, with indexes, 1866-70; and letters received, 1866-70, with registers and indexes. Records of the Fund Branch, consisting of letters sent and received, 1871-83, with registers and indexes.
History: Disbursing Division established 1862, with responsibility for settling accounts incident to the mustering and pay of volunteer troops, and to the payment of bounties. Redesignated Bounty and Claims Division by AGO order, November 11, 1864. Abolished 1889.
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1867-75. Telegrams received and copies of letters sent, 1862-78. Accounts, claims, and bounty books, 1862-66. Register of claims, U.S. Colored Troops, 1864-67.
Textual Records: Registers of claims of former slave owners in DE, KY, MD, MO, TN, and WV, who had remained loyal to the United States and whose slaves had been employed in U.S. service, 1862- 66. Proceedings of commissions in MD, TN, and WV, 1862-66. Vouchers, 1864-66. Register of MD slaves, n.d.
History: Established 1866. Abolished August 1869.
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1866-69, with indexes. Registers of letters received, 1866-69, with indexes. List of deserters, 1815-25.
History: Established April 1, 1875. Abolished December 31, 1899, with functions transferred to Principal Record Division.
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1875-90, with indexes, 1875-82. Letters received, 1875-89, with indexes and registers. Reports of inspections of the U.S. Military Prison, Fort Leavenworth, KS, 1886-93. Registers and lists of prisoners, 1865-93.
History: Established 1889. Abolished 1890.
Textual Records: Compilation, from various War Department files, of correspondence, orders, and other records concerning the establishment, construction, maintenance, and abandonment of military posts and reservations ("Reservation File"), 1800-1916. Volumes containing summary information on posts ("Outline Index of Military Forts and Stations"), n.d.
Microfilm Publications: M661.
Textual Records: Reference files, ca. 1775-1917, consisting of a general file; a file compiled by clerk E.J. Tarr; and a file compiled by clerk R.C. Edmundson.
Textual Records: Precedent files of the Correspondence Division, ca. 1775-1917, with subject indexes; the Correspondence and Examining Division ("Digest File"), 1861-1912; the Officers' Division (portion of "Kohr File"), ca. 1775-1917; and the Appointment, Commission and Personnel, Returns, and Mail and Record Section ("Brinkerhoff File"), ca. 1775-1917.
Textual Records: Records of the commission on claims of officers and men in Departments of the West and the Missouri ("Hawkins Taylor Commission," named after its chairman), consisting of indexes and registers of claims allowed, 1861-62. Testimony and final report of the commission, directed by Maj. Gen. William F. Smith and lawyer James T. Brady ("Smith-Brady Commission"), appointed by the President to investigate alleged corrupt practices of civil and military administrators in the South, 1864-65. Exhibits of, and testimony heard by, an army court of inquiry ("Howard Court of Inquiry") convened to investigate charges against Brig. Gen. Oliver Otis Howard, alleging mismanagement of the Disbursing Branch, Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, and irregularities among the Bureau's records, 1874. Papers, in War Department custody, of the United States Christian Commission, 1861-66, a private organization formed to foster ministry to U.S. soldiers.
Photographs (377 images): Cartes-de-visite of United States Christian Commission personnel, 1864-65 (CC). SEE ALSO 94.16.
History: Record and Pension Division established in the War Department by unnumbered orders, War Department, July 3 and 16, 1889, assuming functions of abolished Record and Pension Division of the Surgeon General's Office; functions of abolished Volunteer Service Branch of AGO (SEE 94.6); and those functions of the Enlisted Branch of AGO (SEE 94.4) relating to volunteer service. Headed by Capt. (later, Maj. Gen.) Fred C. Ainsworth, 1889-1904. Responsible for verifying pension applicants' military service. Redesignated RPO by an act of May 9, 1892 (27 Stat. 27). Acquired functions of abolished War Records Office (SEE 94.13), July 1, 1899. With AGO, RPO redesignated Military Secretary's Office (MSO) by an act of April 23, 1904 (33 Stat. 262). MSO redesignated AGO, 1907. SEE 94.1.
Textual Records: Correspondence relating to military service of volunteer soldiers ("R and P Files"), 1889-1904, with record cards and index. Service histories of units that served in the Volunteer Force of the U.S. Army during the Civil War ("Record of Events Cards"), 1861-65. Completed forms showing original records of military organizations from which information was compiled on cards ("carded") by RPO, n.d. File of decisions concerning the compilation of military and medical records, 1892-1909. Interoffice memorandums regarding the compilation of medical records, maintained by the Medical Division, 1904-11, and its 7th Street Branch, 1891-1909.
Microfilm Publications: M594, M686.
History: RPO examined muster rolls, monthly returns, descriptive books, and similar records in order to compile, on cards, a military service record for each soldier, from initial enrollment to termination of service. Cards relating to each soldier were filed in a jacket bearing his name. RPO used the compiled military service records to verify pension applicants' claims.
Textual Records: Compiled military service records, with indexes, of soldiers who served in volunteer organizations enlisted for service during the post-Revolutionary War period, 1784-1811 (21,420 files), and in the War of 1812, 1812-15 (597,660 files); the Indian Wars, 1817-58 (89,760 files); the Mexican War, 1846-48 (103,500 files); and the Civil War (U.S. Army only), 1861-65 (4,503,025 files). Compiled military service records, with indexes, of soldiers who served in volunteer organizations enlisted for service in the Spanish-American War, 1898 (266,651 files) and the Philippine Insurrection, 1899-1901 (47,386 files), including the U.S. Volunteer Infantry, 1899-1901 (5,600 files), and the Puerto Rican Regiment, U.S. Volunteers, 1899-1901 (1,500 files).
Microfilm Publications: Indexes to the records described above, and compiled military service records for selected wars and U.S. states, are available on microfilm. For a complete listing of such microfilm, consult Cynthia G. Fox and Constance Potter, comps., Military Service Records: A Select Catalog of National Archives Microfilm Publications (1985), and the current edition of the National Archives microfilm catalog, Microfilm Resources for Research.
Related Records: Compiled military service records of Revolutionary War soldiers in RG 93, War Department Collection of Revolutionary War Records; and of soldiers of the Confederate States Army in RG 109, War Department Collection of Confederate Records.
Textual Records: Carded medical records, showing name, rank, organization, complaint, name of admitting hospital, date of admittance, and other information on individuals in the following organizations: regular army, 1821-84, 1894-1912; Marine Corps, 1821-84; volunteer organizations, Mexican and Civil Wars, 1846- 65; gunboat and naval service, 1861-65; and Pioneer Corps, 1861- 65. Carded medical records of hospital stewards, noncommissioned staff officers, and musicians, 1821-84; contract and dental surgeons, 1898-1912; and civilians, 1894-1912. Carded birth records, 1884-1912; death records of civilians; 1884-1912; and marriage records of individuals married on army posts, 1884-1912.
Textual Records: Muster and pay rolls of the Hospital Corps, 1886-1912. Records relating to medical officers and physicians, ca. 1820-1917. Contracts, pay accounts, returns, correspondence, and other records, 1839-1914, concerning volunteer, regular army, militia, and contract physicians; and nurses, matrons, hospital stewards, medical cadets, and other medical personnel.
Textual Records: Records of field hospitals, 1821-1912 (1,250 ft). Miscellaneous records of the post hospital, Fort Wayne, MI, 1905-12 (in Chicago). Records (in Los Angeles) of the post hospital, San Diego Barracks, CA, consisting of records of deaths and interments, 1879-90; registers of patients, 1883-86; and personnel and equipment returns, 1890-98. Medical histories of posts, 1868-1913. Miscellaneous hospital records, 1886-1912. Records relating to cholera, smallpox, and yellow fever epidemics, 1841-93. Surgeons' reports on operations performed in military commands, 1861-65. Reports on surgical and medical cases, diseases, wounds, deaths, medical equipment, and inventions, ca. 1860-80. Reports on vaccinations, 1874-86. Hospital returns, 1814-15. Reports of sick and wounded, 1820-60, 1887-1912. Clinical records of patients, 1884-1912. Records relating to medical examinations of regular army recruits, 1864- 1912. Registers of patients, ca. 1860-1919. Registers of regular army deaths, 1860-89, and discharges, 1861-86; and volunteer deaths and discharges, including U.S. Colored Troops, 1861-65. Regimental casualty lists, 1861-65, with indexes. Chaplain reports, 1861-65. Official Civil War battle lists, 1861-65.
Microfilm Publications: M823.
History: By an act of June 23, 1874 (18 Stat. 222), Secretary of War given an appropriation of $15,000, and authorized to begin publication of the official records of both the U.S. and Confederate States Armies. Organization formed to implement the project was first known as Publications Office, War Records; later as WRO. WRO abolished, with functions transferred to Record and Pension Office of the War Department (SEE 94.12), effective July 1, 1899, by an act of February 24, 1899 (30 Stat. 871). Project resulted in publication, 1880-1901, of a 130-volume official record, with accompanying atlas.
Textual Records: Letters sent, 1875-94 (with gaps). Letters received, 1877-94. General correspondence, 1894-1903. Records relating to distribution of published volumes, 1893-95; and to employees, 1883-94. Records from the files of U.S. Army corps, departments, and divisions, that were retained by WRO, 1861-65, including narrative reports of military operations ("battle reports"). Preliminary prints, and record sets of the final published version, of The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, comp. Capt. Robert Scott et al. (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1880-1901).
Maps (1,265 items): Published copy (175 items) of Atlas to Accompany the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, 1861-65 (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1891-95). Manuscript and annotated maps used in compiling the atlas, 1861-95 (1,051 items). Printed maps, mainly of the western United States, belonging to Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan in 1861 ("McClellan Portfolio"), and originally compiled by the Office of Explorations and Surveys for Pacific Railroad surveys, showing topography, routes of marches, military posts, and Indian reservations, 1853-56 (39 items). SEE ALSO 94.14.
Photographic Prints and Lithographs (103 images): U.S. and Confederate States fortifications in GA, SC, TN, and VA, used in Atlas to Accompany the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, 1861-65 (AUC). SEE ALSO 94.16.
Microfilm Publications: M262.
Maps: Military operations in Africa, Alaska, China, Cuba, Korea, the Philippines, Puerto Rico, and the United States, published by the Military Information Division, AGO, 1897-1902 (75 items). Mexican Punitive Expedition, 1916 (92 items). U.S. posts, harbors, and frontier areas, 1812-55 (43 items). Miscellaneous enclosures to correspondence concerning military explorations, campaigns, and posts, 1808-1917 (107 items).
SEE Maps UNDER 94.13.
SEE UNDER 94.2.1.
Photographs (1,516 images): Cartes-de-visite of Civil War era individuals, 1862 (BC, 14 images). Glaciers and geological formations near the Copper, Tanana, and Koyukuk Rivers, AK, taken by Lt. William R. Abercrombie during Alaskan Expedition ("Miles Expedition"), 1885 (CR, 8 images). Spanish-American War in Cuba, and Philippine Insurrection, belonging to Col. Charles A. Dempsey, 1898-1900 (SAW, 23 images). Military activities, including aviation, at Texas City and Fort Crockett, TX, 1913 (TM, 100 images). News service photographs by William Fox, staff photographer for Underwood and Underwood, of U.S. military activities during Mexican Punitive Expedition, 1916 (UM, UMA, UMB, 1,342 images). Views of houses and scenery at West Point, KY, made during an inspection of an Army campsite by Maj. James Parker, U.S. Cavalry, 1902 (WE, 29 images).
Glass Negatives (11 images): Rifle firing positions, ca. 1900 (R).
Stereographs (2 images): Lookout Mountain, TN, 1861-66 (AUC).
Posters (49 images): Created by companies seeking military contracts and posters advertising Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, ca. 1904-17 BB, 8 images). Foreign military recruiting posters from World War I, ca. 1915 (FRP, 9 images). Used in military recruitment, ca. 1908-16 (WP, 32 images).
SEE Photographs UNDER 94.11. SEE Photographic Prints and Lithographs UNDER 94.13.
Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives of the United States. Compiled by Robert B. Matchette et al. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1995.
3 volumes, 2428 pages.
This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1995.