Saturday, March 29, 2008

A Family Affair: One Michigan Family's Civil War Experience - Part One

One of the few family stories that were passed down was that one of my ancestors was a Civil War veteran. Within the first year or so of doing research, I was able to prove that this family tradition was true. In addition, I discovered that my ancestor's brother-in-laws, wife's uncle and possibly two Oswalt men (living in the same county) that might be his brothers. In short, my ancestor's involvement in the Civil War was just as much of a family affair as it was for almost every other family in the United States at the time of the Civil War. (I say almost because another one of my ancestor's family did not have anyone serve in the Civil War, although they may have contributed to the war effort in other ways. I am still doing research to determine what they may have done.)

One detail I am wondering, though, about my Civil War ancestor is what made him sign up for service when he did. My ancestor did not enlist in a volunteer Michigan infantry regiment until February of 1865. I'm not sure, but hopefully, I will be able to find an answer in future research. In later posts, I'll write more about my Civil War ancestor and other relatives' experiences during the Civil War.

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