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Civil War Records Subject Guide

Records of the Adjutant General
Acc: C#0489
1794 – 2018
Extent: 166.00 cubic feet
Description: This series contains official communications, directives, and orders issued and received from federal, state, local, and military authorities; regimental rolls and returns; and reports of casualties. They also include records detailing the enlistment, equipping, outfitting, maintenance, and application of the military forces of Rhode Island as administered through the offices of the Quartermaster and Paymaster Generals, Provost Marshal, Boards of Enrollment, and other military agents and entities.  
Location: On-site (Available upon request). Except for the compiled and consolidated service records and signed original orders issued 1893 to 1974 which are kept off-site. Please allow two business days to process your request of off-site records.

Annual Report of the Adjutant General for the Year 1865
Acc: C#0489
1861 – 1865
Extent: 6.70 cubic feet
Collection: Annual Reports of the Adjutant General upon military affairs of Rhode Island Description: The Adjutant General's Report serves as the best source to identify all veterans who entered service from Rhode Island during the war. The compilation, originally published in 1866 and revised in 1893, serves as an alphabetical reference guide for each soldier. It also provides a short history of each of the regiments raised from Rhode Island.
On-site (Research Room)

Volunteer Enlistment Papers
Acc: C#0489
1862 – 1865
Extent: 8.50 cubic feet
Description: This series includes nearly 7,000 Civil War enlistment papers from the fall of 1862 when Boards of Enrollment were implemented for the raising and examination of recruits.  These original documents, filled out by enlistees at the time of enlistment, provide valuable data regarding place of birth, age, occupation, height, eye and hair color, complexion, prior military service, and, where applicable, guardian or parental consent. Literacy levels can also be inferred based on signatures and marks.
Location: On-site (Available upon request)

Regimental Muster and Descriptive Books
Acc: C#0489
Extent: 40 volumes; 10 boxes; microfilmed (5 reels)
Description: This series is arranged by company and taken from individual rolls and returns forwarded from units in the field, regimental descriptive books contain information on individual recruits including: rank, age, residence or nativity; when, where and by whom enlisted; term of service; marital status; occupation; and remarks on military service. 
On-site (Available upon request)

Adjutant General – Communications Received
Acc: C#0489
1790 - 1915
Extent:  66.00 cubic feet
Description: This series includes correspondence received by the Governor / Executive department and Adjutant, Quartermaster, and Paymaster Generals relating to military affairs during the war. Includes directives and orders, personnel reports, related inquiries, and other activities involving the recruitment, payment, equipping, and outfitting of Rhode Island units engaged in United States service.
Location: On-site (Available upon request)

Adjutant General – Orders Issued
Acc: C#0489
1856 – 1974
Extent: 40.00 cubic feet
Description: This series includes records of general and special orders / circulars issued by the Governor and the Adjutant General to Rhode Island militia units, independent chartered military commands, and regiments raised for war purposes.
Location: On-site (Available upon request). Except for individual signed orders 1893 to 1974 which are kept off-site. Please allow two business days to process your request of off-site records.

Records of the Quartermaster General
Acc: C#0489
1846 – 1867
Extent: 14.00 cubic feet
Description: This series describes the detail, acquisition, distribution, and maintenance of military stores, and the equipping of Rhode Island forces raised during the war. Records include correspondence, orders, accounts, invoices, and special requisitions relative to the purchase of equipment, arms, and other supplies expended or credited to the department.
Location: On-site (Available upon request)

Records of the Paymaster General
Acc: C#0489
1856 – 1879
Extent: 9.00 cubic feet;
Description: This series contains correspondence and general orders received; annual rolls submitted by commanding officers of State and chartered military organizations; and records of bounty monies paid or advanced to recruits, veteran volunteers or accredited men mustered into United States service. Additional records include enlistment receipts, amount received and signatures of each recruit, and regimental and company rolls of bounty installments paid to men in the field.
Location: On-site (Available upon request)

Records of the Provost Marshal General
Acc: C#0489
1862 – 1865
Extent:  12.00 cubic feet
Description: This series includes records relating to the system created to assist loyal states in the arrest, confinement, and return of deserters or stragglers to their respective regiments, and apprehending individuals enticing soldiers to desert. Included are documents detailing civil trials, fraud investigations, searches for embezzled or stolen government property, arrests made, the disbursement of rewards, and office expenses.  
Location: On-site (Available upon request)