US Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards

Official Seal of the Department of Veterans Affairs ( photo)
Official Seal of the Department of Veterans Affairs ( photo)

The Bureau of Pensions (later Veterans Administration) began using a card system in 1907 to keep a record of all pension payments made to former soldiers and sailors and their widows. This record collection in includes cards for all pension payments made between 1907 and 1933. The cards are in alphabetical order by surname except for American Indian names, which appear alphabetically at the beginning of the appropriate letter of the alphabet.

Information recorded on these cards includes:
Name of pensioner
Name of soldier (if a widow's card)
Certificate number
Service details
Law (under which pensioned)
Class of pension
Rate of pension
Commencement date of pension
Date of certificate
Fees paid
Pension transfers
Date of death
Date the Bureau was notified of death
Former roll number
A record of individual payments made (back of card)

Note: If the veteran or widow lived past 1933, his or her card won’t be in this file. The card for my great-great grandfather, Squire T. Owens (who died in 1920), is here; the card for my other great-great grandfather, Benjamin F. Ellis (who died in 1939), is not.

Persons with a valid SLPL library card and PIN can use from home; you may also use it at Central Library or any of our branch libraries.

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