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Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards, 1907–1933

Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards, 1907–1933

Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards, 1907–1933 | Learn |

The Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards, 1907–1933, are online. You can read the details of the collection at the link above. Near the bottom is an index to the rolls with a link to each roll. Unfortunately you will have to go through the roll to see if the person you are seeking is there. If you chose pdf and wait for it to load [and you will wait] you can save the entire roll to your computer. I found that contributed to faster searching. I used Adobe Acrobat and viewed the pages two up.

The cards only cover 1907-1933. If your veteran and beneficiary died before 1907 you won’t find them here. If you do you will find the veterans service and maybe his disability, often his location and sometimes his cause of death along with the date. If the final payment to the widow it generally states that. Most I checked were handwritten but some were typed.

These veterans would have preferred that their disability not be listed on cards for all to view. It seems many of them suffered from chronic diarrhea.

Not every veteran is a male. Ellen Downing, a nurse, got a pension beginning June 12, 1896. When she died June 19, 1910, her final payment went to Daniel W. Downing of Pittsburgh. It doesn’t state his relationship to Ellen.

One George Downing alias Henry Harris [that’s what it says] began collecting his pension on August 7, 1894. On May 24, 1913, he was dropped from the pension rolls. He didn’t die. They learned he “did not render 90 days of service.” This really sounds like an interesting story. He wasn’t the only person with a totally unrelated name as an alias that I ran across.

A word of warning. Whoever alphabetized these cards was not perfect. Check before and after where you expect to find your ancestor.

Military Markers for ALL Veteran Graves

Military Markers for ALL Veteran Graves

Logan County has six known Revolutionary War veteran burials, more than two dozen War of 1812 veteran burials and a massive number of Civil War Veteran burials. There are even some Spanish American War veteran burials. Those are just the ones we are aware of. There could be more.

According to new laws of the Veterans Administration, ANY SOLDIER with proven military service can have a free military stone or marker EVEN IF THEY NOW HAVE A PRIVATE MARKER. In 2009 they anticipate having a marker that attaches to the private marker as an option. I couldn’t locate a picture and don’t know if that is on schedule.

This means Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Civil War, Spanish American War, etc. vets can have markers if the proper procedure is followed. There are special markers for some pre World War I wars like the Civil War. Confederate graves may also obtain markers.

Detailed information is available at

The form for the marker request is available online. It is not a snap but not terribly difficult either. Proof of service is required. “Service prior to World War I requires detailed documentation, e.g., muster rolls, extracts from State files, military or State organization where served, pension or land warrant, etc.”

They want copies of the actual documents which prove service. Often these documents will come from the National Archives.

It appears you do not have to actually be a descendant to request the marker.
This might be a project for the local genealogical and historical societies and/or the Eagle Scouts, to mark all the graves. In a rural county it is not likely to be expensive if you already have copies of the records — they may already be in local society files or available from a descendant.

Actual copies of Revolutionary War pension records are available at, a subscription service. They also have the Pennsylvania Archives free. Pennsylvania is a state which produced a lot of Revolutionary War vets. Some records are available through which may be free at your local library. There are other sources.

Many Revolutionary War veterans did not receive a pension but they may have used their benefits to buy land. I have not noticed a lot of that in Logan County but it is something to check. Those who bought land using their military benefit are noted in the record book in Springfield.

Both the State of Illinois and the National Archives have Civil War military records and initial land purchase records. The information the state has is online but it appears you will still need a copy of the federal record.

The person who is going to receive the marker, someone local to the area of the cemetery such as the genealogical or historical society, must sign the application. The cemetery must also sign off that they will allow the marker. Someone must pay to install the marker. Neither requirement is a big deal in rural areas like Logan County but could be major in metro areas.

I know in 2009 we are looking for Lincoln but I know where he is and his grave is already quite well marked. Pick a cemetery and mark the early veteran graves.