Amanuensis Monday: Civil War Pension File of Irvin Ellison --Part one

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Back in mid-November, I started to write about my 3rd great grandmother's brother, Irvin Ellison. Unlike his father, he remained in Washington, NC after the Civil War until his death in 1927. I took a break from reviewing Irvin's Civil War Pension file in December due to the holidays. Now that things have quieted down around my house, the urge to pick it up again has returned. It's not a light matter going through it. As I go through page by page, I am struck by all the hardships he had to endure. 

Here's an excerpt from his file:

Declaration For Invalid Pension
Act of June, 27, 1890.

To be executed before a Court of Record or some Officer thereof having custody of its Seal, or a Notary Public, or a Justice of the Peace, whose Official Signature shall be be verified by his own Official Seal, if he has one, or by the proper Clerk, under Seal.

State of North Carolina, County of Beaufort, SS:

     On this 25 day of July, A.D. one thousand eight hundred and ninety_______personally appeared before me, a Clerk of the Court within and for the county and State aforesaid Irvin Ellerson aged 53 years, a resident of the town of Washington, county of Beaufort, State of N.C., who, being duly sworn according to law, declares that he is the identical Irvin Ellerson who was enrolled on the 5th day of June, 1863, in Co. "H." 36th Regt. U.S.C Infy. Vols. in the service of the United States in the War of the Rebellion, and served at least ninety days, and was honorably discharged at Brownsville, Tex., on the 4th day of June, 1866. That he is partially unable to earn a support by manual labor by reason of Frost bite in the feet and Chronic Rheumatism___________________________________
That said disabilities are not due to his vicious habits, and are to the best of his knowledge and belief permanent; that he has _______applied for pension under application No. _________; that he is a pensioner under Certificate No.______________________
That he makes this declaration for the purpose of being placed on the pension roll of the United States under the provisions of the Act of June 27, 1890. 

     He hereby appoints, with full power of substitution and revocation, Wm. M. Cherry of Washington, N.C. State of NC, his true and lawful attorney to prosecute his claim, and to receive therefore a fee of ten dollars; that his post office address is Washington county of Beaufort, State of N.C.

                                                         Irvin Ellerson
                                                                                     claimant's signature.
     Attest: 1 Riley Bryant
                 2 W H Howard
                            Two witnesses who can write sign here.

     Also, personally appeared Riley Bryant, residing at Washington, NC and W H Hanord, residing at Washington, N.C. , persons whom I certify to be respectable and entitled to credit, and who, being by me duly sworn, say that they were present and saw Irvin Ellerson, the claimant, sign his name to the foregoing declaration; that they have every reason to believe from the appearance of said claimant and their acquaintance with him for 26 years and 10 years, respectively, that he is the identical person he represents himself to be; and that they have no interest in the prosecution of his claim. 

                                                                                     Riley Bryant
                                                         W H Hanord
                                                                                       Signature of witnesses.        

          Sworn To and Subscribed before me this 25 day of July, A.D.
          1890, and I hereby certify that the contents of the above        
          declaration, &c., were fully made known and explained to   
          the applicant and witnesses before swearing, including the 
          words___________________erased and the words_______
          ___________added, and that I have no interest, direct or 
          indirect, in the prosecution of this claim. 

                                                                    S Wilkins
                                                                    Clerk Superior Court

The act of June 27, 1890, requires, in case of a soldier:
     (1)  An honorable discharge (but the certificate need not be filed unless called for).
     (2)  A minimum service of ninety days. 
     (3)  A permanent physical disability not due to vicious habits.  (It need not have originated in the service.)
     (4)  The rates under the act are graded from $6 to $12, proportioned to the degree of inability to earn a support, and are not affected by the rank held. 
     (5)  A pensioner under prior laws may apply under this one, or a pensioner under this one may apply under other law, but he cannot draw more than one pension for the same period.

More from Irvin Ellison's file tomorrow.


  1. That's great you were able to get the file. They went through incredible hardship, and to do that through the South at that time, and return home to NC, truely impressive. Looking forward to how the story turns out.


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