The federal census of 1890 was almost completely destroyed by fire. Of the portions that remained, the special schedule of Union veterans and widows is unique. It records the names of soldiers who fought for the Union during the Civil War or the names of their widows and sometimes even details their wounds. We tend to remember only the number of people who died in the war or in specific battles; we rarely think about those who were wounded and survived, and how their later lives must have been affected by their injuries. This schedule helps bring these forgotten individuals into focus. It is also a rich repository of information about the soldiers of the United States Colored Troops.
Who was to be included in this special schedule was not always made clear. A number of individuals show up with the abbreviation "Conf" apparently added later to indicate that the person had been a Confederate soldier.
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