Organizing My Research Finds

I recently joined a group called The Organized Genealogist. Seeing what the other researchers are doing inspires me to organize my findings. I’m notorious for piles of papers and need to learn to “file, not pile.”

So… I’ve made file folders with categories like early life, 93rd Indiana, Andersonville, Civil War background information, Tyro, old age.  Since I’m also researching the 100 men that were in Company G with my great-great grandfather, I need a folder just for them. Also I need a folder for his descendants as I find details about the lives of his children and grandchildren.



Treasure Chest Thursday: My Great-Great-Grandfather’s Diary

A treasure that our family possesses is the well-worn pocket diary that belonged to our Civil War ancestor. He must have bought it right before being mustered out. At the top of the first page, he wrote August the 4 1865.

The first few pages list the men in Company G, 93rd Indiana Volunteer Infantry. Probably he wanted to note all their names so he would remember them. After three years together, I imagine they all felt very close. The first name in the list is Jerome Spilman, Capt.

The names fill the first twelve pages of the diary. He breaks it down into officers, enlisted men, those that died, those that were discharged, ones that were transferred and ones that deserted.

I sure wish the diary included details from all the years he was in the Union Army. Maybe he had an earlier one but it was lost while he was in Andersonville Prison. You can read more about Andersonville here.

The diary that Abraham Tower recorded the names of the men he served with in the Civil War

The diary that Abraham Tower recorded the names of the men he served with in the Civil War

Ask Your Family First

Through stories passed down through generations, you get leads to Civil War veterans that you might miss otherwise. Sometimes the stories get embroidered or a bit garbled over the years, but at least it gives you a starting place.

I found in my mother’s papers, the Civil War records for Elias Babcock. It says he was in Company E of the 107 Illinois Volunteer Regiment. He was mustered in as a private on September 5, 1862. Later he transferred to Battery K of an artillery unit. According to his muster roll it was the 1st Regiment Illinois Light Artillery.

It shows him in the hospital from June 30 through December 1864, first in Knoxville and later in Louisville, KY.

I need to look through my family tree and figure out how he fits in there and why she had his records. I’m guessing the Ezra B. Babcock, who gave his sworn account after Elias’ death, is the actual ancestor.

After the war, Elias and his wife Keziah moved to Wilson County, Kansas in 1865.