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Dear Mr. King,
Thank you for contacting the History Hub with your question..
The National Archives has access to the Compiled Military Service Record (CMSR) of all volunteer soldiers within each regiment that they served in. The CMSR will contain basic information about the soldier and their role, and it is advised that this is your best place to begin the research. An index to all CMSRs can be found by following this link to the National Park Service website, or the microfilm can be accessed at select National Archives locations.
You mentioned that your grandmother received a pension until the 1930s. The National Archives has the microfilm publication T288: General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934, which should have the pension files of your grandfather. According to the publication’s description, these pension files should have more information about the soldier than what is located in the CMSR. Follow this link to find out more about the pension files and where to locate them. It should also be mentioned that Ancestry.com has access to the index for a fee.
Once you know more about your grandfather and what unit he might have served in, you can access the microfilm publication M594: Compiled Records Showing Service of Military Units in Volunteer Union Organizations. This index can lead you to more information about the unit that your ancestor served in. An index to that publication can be found here.
If you have further questions about where to begin your research or what other collections may be relevant to you, the National Archives website has an excellent list of researcher resources to check out. That page is called “Civil War Records: Basic Research Sources” and can be found here. We wish you luck on your research journey, and if you have any other questions please feel free to contact us again. Thank you for reaching out to the History Hub.