2 Replies Latest reply on Feb 22, 2016 11:39 AM by Erik Skov

    where do I find union civil war pension applications?


      Where do I find the pension application for an English citizen who presumably was recruited in the UK as a Union spy and travelled to the US and enlisted in the 5th Texas Infantry regiment, Company B, of the Confederate Army in March of 1862 in Columbus, TX to presumably collect intelligence and later, on his first day of action, was "captured" near West Point, Virginia in May of 1862, debriefed at Fortress Monroe for 30 days,Then sent to join the other prisoners in Fort Delaware, re-inserted by being exchanged in August of 1862, immediately re-joined his company, was wounded in August of 1862, sent to Hospital 8 in Richmond in Dec of 1862, was discharged, for disability, from the confederate army in February of 1862, then served as Paymaster for Hospital 8 until its closure that spring. He returned to the UK at a time unknown and travelled periodically to an American consular office where he was paid a pension in gold coin.The US Counselor Office was likely in in Glasgow, Scotland or Carlisle, England? The applicant was named Francis Kelly Harris, he was born in Croydon, Surrey, England in 1830 or 1831 and died in Kirkcudbright, Scotland in 1895. We do not know where he was between May of 1860 when his wife became pregnant and April of 1861, when, in the UK census, his wife lists herself as widow and head of household. This was slightly before start of American Civil War. His wife subsequently re-married and had several more children. She is alive as late as the UK 1910 census. We also do not know where he was from the latest record, March of 1863, at Richmond, Virginia to the 1881 Scottish Census when he and a new wife lived in Kirkcudbright in southwestern Scotland.

        • Re: where do I find union civil war pension applications?

          Here is the listing for Harris in the Pension Index, found on Ancestry: http://search.ancestryinstitution.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?gss=angs-c&new=1&rank=1&msT=1&gsfn=Francis+Kelly&gsfn_x=0&gsln=Har…


          Do you know his wife's name or the county where they lived? Here is a listing of the Alabama, Texas and Virginia Confederate Pensions, 1884-1958: http://search.ancestryinstitution.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?db=texasconfederatepensions&so=2&pcat=MIL_PENSION&gss=angs-c&new=1…

            • Re: where do I find union civil war pension applications?

              Dear Mr. Walker,




              Thank you so much for responding to my posting on History Hub. I have been working on finding this information for a very long time and I believe it would open up some new historical info about the Civil War that has not previously been known.




              I did try to open the “Harris in the pension index” link that you furnished but after logging in, I got a message saying this was only available to institutions and not consumers.




              Regarding the state pension records you mentioned, I do not believe Francis Kelly Harris received a confederate pension. Be believe he was recruited in England by Union Agents to go to Texas and join the Confederate Army and gather certain information and THEN find a way to get to the Union forces to report. Therefore, we believe any pension would have been a Union Pension. At some point after his last known location in Richmond, he returned to the UK and lived in Kirkcudbright, Scotland. We believe his pension was paid through US Consulate offices in either Glasgow, Scotland or Carlisle, England.




              I really appreciate ANY assistance you may be able to give me. If the best way forward is to commission paid work by you or someone recommended by you, that, too, would be an option.








              On behalf of Linda L. Skov (by her husband Erik)




              PS I am attaching a timeline of Francis Kelly Harris with sources. I particularly find interesting the Identity of the Officer returning him from Fortress Monroe to Fort Delaware. Only a “very important person” would have been escorted by the Core Commander’s personal escort (adjutant).