Monday, January 9, 2012

Military Monday: The Spanish-American War Army

I've been doing writing on my favorite field - the Civil War - so I thought it was time to talk briefly about a different time period. The Spanish-American War is often forgotten by our 21st century culture. Spurred by the "attack" on the U.S.S. Maine, the war with Spain over Cuba lasted from 1898 and 1899. Americans joined the Army to fight, drawn by the desire to defend the country's honor. Connecticut men enlisted in local regiments, much as they had during the Civil War. Most served for just under a year.
Spanish-American veterans' records can be found in a variety of locations. Published regimental histories of the 1st Connecticut Volunteer History, two of which are available on, can offer insight into a soldier's day to day life. The National Archives hold pension files and compiled military service records of local veterans. Local historical societies may hold records of your ancestor's service - everything from bullets to letters. Finally, like Civil War veterans, Spanish-American War veterans had their own fraternal organization. It was eventually disbanded, and the Connecticut State Library now holds its records. Visit the finding aid at for more information.
This is just a quick beginning of a fascinating subject. I hope it inspires a few of you to do your own research!


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