Civil War Service Database

About This Database

The Civil War Service Database was created from an 8 x 5 card file maintained by the Alabama Department of Archives and History from the early 1900s until 1982. As staff came across information related to Alabama individuals during the American Civil War, a card was created. Information on individuals exempted from military service, or who served in the militia or home guard, is included. Soldiers from other states that have some connection to Alabama are also included. If new information was discovered from another source, another card was created. Multiple cards for an individual often exist. Sources include muster rolls, governors' correspondence, veterans' censuses, manuscript collections, newspapers, and pension records. Names, places and events are often inconsistently spelled. This card file is in no way inclusive. Not every individual who served from Alabama is present in the card file. Every card contains empty fields. Because much of the documentation relating to the Army of Tennessee was lost, soldiers that served in that army tend to be poorly documented. The cards are arranged alphabetically by last name. Since all of this information is available online, the actual cards are closed.

The advantages of using the database over the card file are that it can be accessed through the internet at home and searched in a variety of ways. Because the card file is so large, and the input of this material relied largely on volunteer help, the process of data entry was extremely time consuming. It took nearly ten years to complete. Currently all entries under the letters A - Z are available (Over 238,000 individual entries). Additional information has and will be added to this database as it becomes available. Data entry was based on the Civil War Service Card File, as well as smaller card files and lists. Because of time constraints no attempt was made to validate the information, including spelling of names. All the information from the source, whether it was on a card or from a list, has been entered into the database.