1 Reply Latest reply on May 11, 2020 10:12 AM by Jason Atkinson

    Seeking if ancestor fought at Gettysburg


      My Civil War ancestor fought for the Union in the 1st West Virginia Cavalry Co. K. I have his full pension record and his CSR. His regiment was at Gettysburg. How do I find out if he was actually there and indeed fought? His pension does not elaborate on most of his service. His CSR says he was present April 30, 1863 - August 30, 1863. Then later there is a note "July 1863- absent in dismounted, Camp at Cumberland MD". How can I find out how long he was in Cumberland? He was from Wheeling, WV so he didn't go home. Is it possible he fought on July 3rd with his regiment and later in July ended up in Cumberland, MD? How do I found out this information? Thank you.

        • Re: Seeking if ancestor fought at Gettysburg
          Jason Atkinson Ranger

          Dear Ms. Higdon,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


          We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the series Regimental and Company Books of Civil War Volunteer Union Organizations, 1861 - 1867 in the Records of the Adjutant General's Office, 1762 - 1917 (Record Group 94) that includes a descriptive book, morning reports, and order book of Company K, 1st West Virginia Cavalry, which may indicate where he and his company were during the battle of Gettysburg. For more information, please contact National Archives at Washington, DC - Textual Reference (RDT1) via email at Archives1reference@nara.gov.


          Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT1.  We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


          Also, there is a short regimental history in Theodore F. Lang, Loyal West Virginia from 1861 to 1865 (Baltimore, 1895) pages 159-176.


          Private Samuel Wheeler wrote some reminiscences of his time in the 1st West Virginia Cavalry.  They have been transcribed and published in Lynda Rees Heaton, ed., "War Experiences of Samuel Wheeler, Private in the First West Virginia Cavalry," West Virginia History n.s. 6/2 (Fall 2012): 45-69; 8/1 (Spring 2014): 65-88.


          There is an article about the 1st West Virginia Cavalry at Gettysburg: Steven Cunningham and Beth White, "'The Ground Trembled as They Came:' The 1st West Virginia Cavalry in the Gettysburg Campaign," in Mark Snell, ed., "Gettysburg: Regimental Leadership and Command" [special issue], Civil War Regiments: A Journal of the American Civil War 6/3 (1999).


          We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your research!