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Alabama Dept. of Archives and History records available via Ancestry.com

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  • A.J. Wright
    ... *From:* Breedlove, Mike [Mike.Breedlove@archives.alabama.gov] *Sent:* Thursday, April 05, 2012 2:55 PM *To:* Amos J Wright *Subject:* Alabama Dept. of
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 6, 2012
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      From: Breedlove, Mike [Mike.Breedlove@...]
      Sent: Thursday, April 05, 2012 2:55 PM
      To: Amos J Wright
      Subject: Alabama Dept. of Archives and History records available via Ancestry.com

      Greetings everyone,


      Ancestry.com scanned a large number of records from Alabama that are now available on their site.

      These records came a number of institutions.

      Alabama records that are available may be found here - http://search.ancestry.com/Places/US/Alabama/Default.aspx

      Of course to view most of the actual records in each of these series you either need to be a member of Ancestry or physically go to an institution that gives free access, such as the Alabama Dept. of Archives and History in Montgomery.  


      The records that came from the Alabama Dept. of Archives and History (ADAH) include:


      ADAH State Government Records Scanned  and Available

      on Ancestry.com

      Number of Records



      Alabama State Censuses of 1820, 1850, 1855 and 1866 [FREELY AVAILABLE]- This database contains state censuses from Alabama for the years 1820, 1850, 1855, and 1866. Each of these censuses recorded the names of the head of households and the number of other household inhabitants according to gender and age categories. Some years also included race categories and distinguished between individuals who were free and slave. Unfortunately, records do not exist for every county that existed at the time. These are freely available to all.




      Alabama Death Record of State Convicts, 1843-1951 - Death records for Alabama state convicts who died while either a prisoner in custody or on parole are in this database. The records are ordered chronologically and in the 1908–1951 records chronologically and then alphabetically. The state prison system was first organized in 1839, prior to that all criminal punishment was conducted on a town level by either local citizens or a county official. The prison system was actually meant as a way to reform the local treatment of criminals. During the Civil War almost all convicts were pardoned and released; afterwards incarcerated prisoners were leased out to work at repairing railroads and during the late 1800s at coal mining, saw mills, and turpentine stills, which aided the state’s economy. The early 1900s saw laboring prisoners working in cotton mills and road construction; this was the beginning of portable “road camps.”




      Alabama Convict Records, 1886-1952 - Anyone researching ancestors who spent time in the Alabama state prison system between 1889 and 1954 should find this database invaluable. The collection includes two series of records created by government boards responsible for the oversight and care of prisoners during that period. One set was created as convicts were admitted into a state prison; the other monitored county convicts who were admitted into the state prison system. The collection includes both indexes and the records themselves. Entries can provide extensive details on the convict, sentencing, and time and conduct in prison. For example, you may find: name, alias, serial number, race, gender, age, county where convicted, sentence details, date when received, information on escapes or parole, discharges, date, cause, and place of death. Some entries may also provide details on occupation, physical condition, and health. Records can be searched by name, county, birth year, race, and gender.




      Alabama Civil War Muster Rolls, 1861-1865 - These rolls are for Confederate units formed in Alabama during the Civil War—though many operated outside of the state over the course of the war. The records include rolls for infantry, cavalry, artillery, reserves, navy, marines, and even out-of-state regiments. Muster rolls provide a “roll call” for a military unit at a specified place and time. Both officers and enlisted men are listed, and often wounds, sickness, leave status, or other reasons for men being away from the unit are included.




      Alabama Confederate Pensions and Service Records, 1862-1947 - This collection contains records that relate to Confederate veterans’ pensions in Alabama between 1865 and 1947. During the 35 years after the Civil War until 1900, only disabled soldiers were receiving a pension from the state of Alabama for their service. In 1899, the State Legislature authorized pensions for Confederate veterans who weren’t disabled and resided in Alabama or for their widows. The warrants for these payments were drawn up by the state auditor and include: Name, Number, Occupation, Where wounded, Date of wound, Whether a widow or veteran, Company, Regiment, and Branch of service. The other portion of these records contain applications for the relief of veterans or their widows, correspondence, affidavits, widow applications for reclassification, and other related materials. These records may contain: Name, Company, Regiment, List of property, and Name of spouse




      Alabama Surname Files, 1901-2005 - This database contains various records providing biographical information on individuals who lived in Alabama. Staff members at the Alabama Department of Archives and History (ADAH) started compiling these records on Alabamians in 1901. They include a variety of items and record types arranged by surname: newspaper clippings, obituaries, local and family histories, donated family research and records, extracts from censuses, research requests made to the archives, and other items. While ADAH staff began collecting and assembling these records in 1901, names of people included can predate this year.




      Alabama Census of Confederate Soldiers, 1907, 1921 - This is a collection of two censuses of Confederate Soldiers residing in Alabama in the early 1900s. Both were carried out more for pension purposes than for numbering purposes, but the census counted any Confederate veterans residing in Alabama, not just those who served for a regiment or company from Alabama.




      Alabama WWII Military Dead and Wounded, 1944-1946 - This database contains index cards created by the Alabama Department of Archives and History that list facts about wounded, captured, and deceased soldiers from Alabama. Information on the cards varies somewhat but typically includes name, rank, service, next of kin, condition (wounded, deceased, captured, etc.), source and date for the information, Details may also include cause and place of death. Most of the cards document events at the end of World War II, between 1944 and 1946.




      Alabama Soldiers in the Korean War, 1950-1952 - Staff members from the Alabama Department of Archives and History (ADAH) created these index cards to document the military service of Alabamians during the Korean War. According to the ADAH, staffers extracted details from “clippings, brochures, reference correspondence, photocopies and typescripts of original documents, and various printed materials in the ADAH collections.” Cards can include details such as name, branch of the military served in, rank, residence/address, event dates (wounded, missing in action, rotation returnee, etc.), sources, source dates, and names of family members/next of kin. Cards may also include some military personnel from the time period who were not necessarily deployed to Korea.




      TOTAL Number of Records available



      ADAH State Government Records Scanned but Not Available Yet on Ancestry.com Until Indexed



      Approximate Quantity




      Index cards of the Alabama state militia, 1820-1865


      11 cubic ft.




      Alabama state troops, 1873-1899


      3.5 cubic ft.




      ADAH Index cards, Alabama National Guard soldiers, 1891-1923


      82,000 3x5 cards





      Thanks, Mike

      Michael A. Breedlove

      Archivist Coordinator

      Alabama Dept. of Archives and History

      624 Washington Avenue

      Montgomery, AL 36130-0100


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