This month we’re excited to highlight our collection of Ohio Soldiers Graves Registration Cards. This archive consists of index cards for soldiers who fought in conflicts from the War of 1812 through the 1950s. The cards contain a wealth of information and provide a jumping-off point for further research.
The soldiers in this index were not necessarily from Ohio. The Soldier’s Home in Dayton, Ohio, was one of the first three Soldier’s Homes established by Abraham Lincoln after the Civil War. It provided care for soldiers disabled through loss of limb, wounds, or disease as a result of their service in the Union in the Civil War. Consequently, soldiers from outside of Ohio are found in this index if they were residents of the Home.
In the following three examples, we’ve selected three random Graves Registration Cards and using the clues found on the cards, researched more about the lives of those soldiers.
Edward Eades was from Bowling Green, Kentucky and enlisted in 1864 as a private in Company “C” of the 115th U.S. Colored Troops division. Knowing the division Eades served in allows us to research the movements of those troops. The 115th saw action in Petersburg, Richmond, and eventually sailed to Texas for duty in the District of the Rio Grande, before being mustered out.
By cross-referencing his Civil War Pension Index card we learn that Eades had obtained the rank of 1st Sergeant when he was discharged in 1866. Eades was living in the Soldier’s Home when he died at age 77-years-old from Nephritis (chronic kidney inflammation). The Graves Registration Card also lists his next of kin, nephew Edward Campbell from Greenville, Kentucky. This information opens the doors for further research into Kentucky archives.
A second example is that of Carl Babcock. He served in France in WWI with the 101st Regiment, 26th Division. His WWI Draft Registration Card lists his address in 1917; his marital status (single); and his physical characteristics. He was from Napoleon, Ohio, and a search of the archives at Newspapers.com reveal that he was serving as the Fire Chief when he died. The Graves Registration Card records the location of the cemetery he was buried in. We searched Findagrave.com to find his page. It lists his parents, spouse, and siblings.
A final example is that of Thomas V. Rabbitt. Rabbitt fought in the Spanish-American War. He was from Massachusetts and died in the Soldier’s Home in 1924 at 54-years-old of acute alcohol poisoning. We learn from his Grave Registration Card that he was from Milford, Massachusetts. A search on Ancestry reveals his birth record that includes the names of his parents; his marriage record and his 1900 census record that lists his occupation as a quarryman. Further research of records related to the 6th Massachusetts Infantry Company “C” revealed that about two weeks after enlisting, Rabbitt joined with his infantry where they fought during the bloodiest battle of the war in the charge up San Juan Hill in Cuba.
Do you have an ancestor included in the Ohio Soldiers Graves Registration Cards? Search their records on Fold3!