Education and Workforce Development Cabinet
Historic Confederate pension applications now available online
FRANKFORT, Ky. - The Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives (KDLA) has announced that for the first time the complete collection of Confederate Pension Application files is now available in a digital format on the KDLA website. The applications are searchable by name, unit and county, and provide invaluable information to genealogists, local historians, and anyone interested in Civil War history.
The applications and other supporting documents are online in the e-Archives section of the KDLA website at http://kdla.ky.gov/records/e-archives/Pages/default.aspx.
The Confederate Pension Act was passed by the Kentucky General Assembly in March 1912 to provide aid to indigent and disabled Confederate veterans of the Civil War and their widows. Any Confederate veteran or widow of a veteran living in Kentucky in 1912 or after could apply for a pension, regardless of the state in which he resided or the unit in which he served during the war. Pensions for Union veterans were funded by the federal government.
“As we commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, the Confederate pension applications document once again the important role played by Kentucky in that conflict. The Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives houses these and many additional rich resources for Kentuckians and researchers detailing every era of Kentucky history,” said Wayne Onkst, state librarian and commissioner of KDLA.
In some cases, the application and supporting documents are the only surviving records of a soldier's service. Information generally includes the applicant's name, address, military service history, superior officer's name and statements of witnesses. Supporting documents may include affidavits, letters, marriage licenses, memoranda and other records.
These records were digitized with funding provided by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services’ Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA).