The uses and significance of Colorado military records in family history and genealogical research for ancestors that were veterans are obvious but Colorado military records can also be essential to researchers whose primary ancestors weren’t soldiers in any war. Because of the volume of genealogical facts contained in a number of Colorado military pension files they ought to never be disregarded during the research process.
National Guard muster rolls for 1861 to 1919 can be found at the Colorado State Archives. Service records for the Colorado National Guard from 1861 to 1945 are also located there. The “Index to Compiled Service Records of the Union Army for Colorado” can be found on microfilm at the offices of the Adjutant General. The FHL, Denver Public Library, and National Archives-Rocky Mountain Branch also has that index on file. The recorder’s office or county clerk’s office should have post-World War II soldier discharge papers on file. However, some counties are closing the discharge papers to researchers.
Colorado in the Civil War
- Research in the Civil War 1861-1865
- Civil War links from fold3.com with original data from the National Archives:
- Civil War links from ancestry.com:
- U.S., Confederate Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-1865 – This database contains an index to compiled service records (CSRs) for soldiers who served with units in the Confederate army. Most of the men whose names appear in this index served with units from 15 different states or territories; others were soldiers raised directly by the Confederate government, generals and staff officers, and other enlisted men not associated with a regiment. Compiled service records are files of cards that abstract original military records relating to an individual soldier. A typical CSR will include an envelope that lists a soldier’s name, rank, unit, and card numbers, followed by cards with details extracted from muster rolls, rosters, hospital rolls, Union prison records, payrolls, and other records, with a new card being created each time a soldier’s name appeared on a new document. The CSRs may also include original documents pertaining to the soldier. The CSRs do not constitute an exhaustive list of all men who served in the Confederate army.
- U.S., Union Soldiers Compiled Service Records, 1861-1865
- Colorado Civil War Books (amazon.com)
Colorado Modern Wars
- Colorado Veterans’ Grave Registrations
- Sherman Lee Pompey’s Confederate Soldiers Buried in Colorado (Independence, Calif.: Historical and Genealogical Publishing Co., 1965)
- John H. Nankivel’s History of the Military Organizations of the State of Colorado, 1860–1935 (Denver: W. H. Kistler Stationary Co., ca. 1935).
- Colorado Soldiers in WWI, 1917-18 (search.ancestry.com) This book lists the names of more than 43,000 Colorado men and women who served in the military during World War I. The names are listed alphabetically and separated into sections by county, with the post office listed for the place where the person lived. The database gives each person’s name, rank, and Armed Forces branch or organization.