Utah Military Records

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Union General Patrick E. Connor (1820-1891) established Fort Douglas in Utah

Online Resources[edit | edit source]

United States Military Online Genealogy Records provides more links for nationwide military record collections.

Military records identify thousands of individuals who served or who were eligible for service. Evidence that an individual actually served may be found in family traditions, census records, naturalization records, biographies, cemetery records, and records of veterans’ organizations. Your ancestors will be more interesting if you learn about their military service and the history of their units. Military records can also give birth dates, marriage dates, death dates, spouse's and children’s names, and localities of residence throughout the life of the family.

Many military records are found at the Family History Library, the National Archives, the National Archives—Denver Branch, and the Utah State Archives. The Family History Library also has military histories for the various military engagements. U.S. Military Records provide more information on federal military records and search strategies.

Forts[edit | edit source]

The forts were built as protection from the Indians, then as a place to house the troops sent to put down the rebellion of the Latter-day Saints. These forts and camps are listed in alphabetical order by place, disregarding the words "fort" or "camp".[1]

  • Fort at Battle Creek —  During the Walker Indian War in the 1850s, citizens of what is now Pleasant Grove, Utah Valley, built a fort with walls two or three feet thick and six feet tall that occupied an area the size of sixteen city blocks. The settlers in the area at the time built homes inside the fort.The town was previously called Battle Creek after a battle which took place there in 1849 between Latter-day Saint settlers and a small band of Ute Indians.
  • Fort Cameron — Located just east of Beaver City, it served as a military post from 1872 to 1883. It later became a school, the Beaver Branch of Brigham Young Academy. That school closed when the state legislature required each county to provide tuition-free schools. One of the original buildings now serves as a private residence and some evidence of other remains of the fort exists.Fort Cameron burial records, 1873-1880
  • Cedar Fort
  • Camp Crittenden — Camp Floyd was renamed Fort Crittenden in 1860 and abandoned in 1861.
  • Fort Deseret — Fort Deseret was built in 1865 during the Utah Black Hawk War to protect settlers in western Utah from the attacks of local Utes. Location is in present-day Millard County, Utah.
  • Fort Douglas — Located on the east bench of Salt Lake City, adjacent to the University of Utah. It was created in 1862 as Camp Douglas and was renamed Fort Douglas in 1878. It continued in use as a U.S. military post until 1991. It still is headquarters for several reserve units. Many of the buildings are preserved and a museum is open to the public. Textual records of this fort, 1869-1907, including registers, reports, and correspondence, are in the National Archives and are described in Records of United States Army, Continental Commands, 1821-1920, under the section entitled Records of Posts, 1820-1940 (Record Group 393.7).
  • Fort Duchesne — Established in 1886 to replace Fort Thornburg in the Unitah Basin. It continued as a U.S. military post until 1912 when it was transferred to the Bureau of Indian Affairs as the headquarters for the Uintah-Ouray Agency.
  • Camp Floyd — Established in 1858 when "Johnston's Army" came into the Salt Lake Valley and marched 40 miles south to Cedar Valley. The post was built by the soldiers assigned there, with the help of local settlers. It was renamed Fort Crittenden in 1860.
  • Hamilton Fort — A local fortification near Cedar City known initially as Fort Walker. It was never considered an official U.S. Army post.
  • Fort Robidoux (Uninta Basin) — Old Fort Kit Carson
  • Fort Thornburg — Established as a post for U.S. troops in 1881. It was located in the Ashley Valley in Eastern Utah until its closure in 1883. The troops stationed there assisted in building a road from Vernal to Fort Bridger.
  • Fort Utah — This original settlement at Provo, Utah, was established March 12, 1849. Incidents at the fort were part of the Provo War and the later Walker War. (See replica of Fort Utah above.)
  • Fort Walker — The original name of Hamilton Fort.
  • Union Fort — A small fortification was built in the Salt Lake Valley by local settlers in 1853-1854. Only a marker remains to identify the site.
  • Camp Murray, Utah

Mexican War (1846-1848)[edit | edit source]

The Mexican War was caused by the annexation of Texas by the United States in 1845. Most volunteer regiments were from southern states. Records of Mexican War veterans might exist in a state where the veteran later resided.

  • Mexican War Index to Pension Files, 1887–1926. (NARA T317). FHL films 0537000–13 Alphabetically arranged and includes the veteran’s name, rank, and unit; names of dependents; date of filing and application; certificate numbers; act filed under; and state from which application was made. Also available at:
  • Robarts, William Hugh. Mexican War Veterans: A Complete Roster of the Regular and Volunteer Troops in the War Between the United States and Mexico, from 1846-1848… Washington, D.C.: Brentano’s, 1887. FHL book 973 M2rwh Digital version available at Internet Archive.

Click on these links to learn more about the Mexican War and about Mexican War pension records.

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The usage of "Mormon" and "LDS" on this page is approved according to current policy.

Mormon Battalion

In July 1846 Mormon Battalion volunteers were officially organized at Council Bluffs, Iowa, to reinforce the United States Army in California during the Mexican War. The battalion consisted of five companies who enlisted for one year. Due to illness, about a third of the battalion did not complete the two-thousand-mile march but were sent to Pueblo, Colorado. The remaining members arrived in California in January 1847. They served in San Diego and Los Angeles. At the end of the one year, the army tried to reenlist all of its members, but only one company was organized in Los Angeles on 20 July 1847. This company only served for six months. After they were discharged, most battalion members went to Utah.

Compiled Military Service Files

  • United States. Record and Pension Office. Compiled Service Records of Volunteer Soldiers Who Served During the Mexican War in Mormon Organizations. National Archives Microfilm Publications, M0351. Washington, D.C.: National Archives, 1961. (Family History Library films 471465; 471517–18). These alphabetically compiled service records usually include the soldier’s name, rank, dates of enlistment and service, and the unit in which he served. It often contains abstracts of entries relating to the soldier as found in the original muster rolls and returns. Cross references were included for each soldier’s name that appear with more than one spelling.

Pensions and Bounty Land Application Files

  • United States. Bureau of Pensions. Selected Pension Application Files for Members of the Mormon [sic] Battalion, Mexican War, 1846–48. National Archives Microfilm Publications, T1196. Washington D.C.: National Archives and Record Service, 1934. (Family History Library films 480129–49.) These films contain an alphabetical list of applications from veterans, widows, and dependents. Not all soldiers are included, and some files are not in order. They may show name, unit, rank, enlistment and discharge dates, disability, details of service, witness affidavits, marriage and family information.

Bounty Land Application Files

For more records about the Mormon Battalion see:

  • Nelson, Glade I. "The Mormon Battalion: A Selected Bibliographic List." Genealogical Journal 26, no. 2 (1998): 59–79. (Family History Library book 973 D25gj.)

Additional sources on the Mormon Battalion with the be found in the Latter-day Saint Military Records Wiki Article.

Utah Militia (1849-1887)[edit | edit source]

The Constitution of the Provisional State of Deseret officially created the Utah Militia in 1849 to protect the settlers. The Constitution required all men between the ages of 18 and 45 to participate. Organizations for boys ages 14 to 17 and men ages 45 to 75 also existed. The federal government took control of the militia in 1887 with the passage of the Edmunds-Tucker Act.

Utah State Archives

Family History Library

  • United States. War Department. Utah Territorial Militia Muster Rolls, 1849 to 1870. Salt Lake City, Utah: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1966. (Family History Library films 485554–58.) These are arranged by military districts. Most districts are connected to each county.
  • Utah State Archives. Utah Territory Militia; Nauvoo Legion Correspondence Orders and Reports, 1–2126. Salt Lake City, Utah: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1966. (On six Family History Library films beginning with 497709.It is indexed by place names, subjects, and personal names.
  • Also digital images in the FamilySearch Historical Records collection Utah, Territorial Militia Records, 1849-1877) This manuscript includes correspondence, orders, and reports. The muster rolls, pay rolls, and officer lists have been indexed.
  • Gardner, Hamilton. Pioneer Military Leaders of Utah. Typescript, 1952. (University of Utah, Marriott Library, Ms 57.) This is a military history of Utah from 1847 to 1898, focusing on the activities of the Territorial Militia. A register is available.

Indian Wars (1849s-1890s)[edit | edit source]

Although Native American and pioneer relations were generally peaceful, there were a few conflicts, including:

United States troops from Fort Douglas were involved in the Goshiute War and the Battle of Bear River. In the other Indian wars, only the settlers and Native Americans were involved.



Beside the Utah records of correspondence for pensions, federal records exist for these men. For information about federal pension records see United States Military Records.

Historical accounts of the Indian war period are in:

  • Peterson, John Alton. Utah's Black Hawk War. Salt Lake City, Utah: University of Utah Press, 1998. (Family History Library book 979.2 H2pe.) This history includes a personal name index.
  • Gottfredson, Peter. History of Indian Depredations in Utah. Salt Lake City, Utah: Skelton, 1919. (Family History Library book 979.2 F3g; film 1421844 item 10.) Contains accounts from histories, diaries, newspapers, and interviews. It identifies many of the settlers who were killed during the Indian wars and is indexed in Family History Library book 979.2 H2g index.

National Archives

The Utah War (1857-1861)[edit | edit source]

The Utah War began when President James Buchanan appointed a governor to replace the Latter-day Saint leader Brigham Young. He ordered several thousand United States troops to the Utah Territory in 1857 to enforce the appointment and repel an alleged Mormon rebellion. The Army arrived in 1858 but the conflict was settled peacefully. The army built Camp Floyd southwest of Salt Lake City. Soldiers remained there until the outbreak of the Civil War in 1861.

Camp Floyd Cemetery

Printed Sources

Soldiers are found in the Utah Militia records mentioned previously. The United States Army records have information about troops involved in this "war." Registers of Enlistment in the U.S. Army, 1798–1914 includes the U.S. troops who came to Utah. Information about these records is found in the United States Military Records.

The Family History Library has several published accounts of the Utah War and Camp Floyd such as:

Related Collections

National Archives - War Department. Department of Utah, 1.1.1857-7.3.1861 - Records of U.S. Army Continental Commands, Record Group 393

National Archives - War Department. Camp Crittenden, Utah - Records of U.S. Army Continental Commands, Record Group 393

FamiySearch Collections


Camp Floyd State Park Museum

Civil War (1861 to 1865)[edit | edit source]

See Utah in the Civil War for information about Utah Civil War records, websites, etc. with links to articles about the Utah companies involved in the Civil War.

Fort Douglas

Troops Stationed at Fort Douglas The regimental pages often include lists of the companies with links to the counties where the companies started. Men in the companies often lived in the counties where the companies were raised. Knowing a county can help when researching more about the soldiers and their families.

The Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System allows name searching for soldiers. The result set gives the regiments for the soldiers. Then you can check the Wiki regiment pages to determine counties. Often knowing the counties that had men in a regiment will help you determine if a soldier was your ancestor.

Lott Smith Company, Utah Cavalry

Veteran Organizations

The Department of Utah Grand Army of the Republic was organized in 1883 and consisted of Union veterans living in Utah that joined the organization

Spanish-American War (1898)[edit | edit source]

The Spanish-American War was largely fought in Cuba and the Philippines. Spanish-American War records might exist in the state from which the soldier served or in a state where the veteran later resided.


The Utah State Archives in Salt Lake City, Utah has the Spanish-American War; Index to Utah Units Salt Lake City, which is muster-in rolls for 1898 to 1899. The Family History Library has:

Click on the link to learn more about the Spanish American War.

Philippine Insurrection (1899-1902)[edit | edit source]

Utah units fought in the Philippines and also served in Florida, San Francisco, and Hawaii.

Mexican Border Campaign (1916-1917)[edit | edit source]

In 1916 the United States had trouble along the United States-Mexico border. The Utah National Guard served with other state units on the Border from March 1916 to February 1917.

The Family History Library has some Utah State Archives' records on this campaign. These records include the Mexican Border Service muster rolls and the Index to Utah participants:

The pension index for soldiers from this campaign is found with the federal pension indexes. See U.S. Military Records for further information.

World War I (1917-1918)[edit | edit source]

World War I was a global war fought on multiple continents with several nations involved. Over four million men and women served from the United States. More than 24,000 men from Utah served in World War I.

The Family History Library and Utah State Archives have service records which list residences, date and place of birth, injuries, enlistment place, residence at time of enlistment, service and discharge dates. They are arranged alphabetically.

  • United States. War Department. World War I Service Records of Utahns. Salt Lake City, Utah: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1966. (Family History Library films 485733-50.)
  • United States. Marine Corps. World War I Service Records, Marines (from Utah). Salt Lake City, Utah: Utah State Archives and Record Service, 1973. (Family History Library film 1643885.)
  • United States. Adjutant General's Office. World War I Service Records, Army (Utah). Salt Lake City, Utah: Utah State Archives and Record Service, 1973. (Family History Library films 1643886–94.)

Utah State Archives Collections

A published roster of soldiers is found in:

  • United States. Selective Service System. Utah World War I Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918. National Archives Microfilm Publications, M1509. Washington, D.C.: National Archives, 1987–1988. (On 20 Family History Library films beginning with 1983881) Also available at:

See WWI Draft Records for more information.

World War II (1941-1945)[edit | edit source]

More than 65,000 Utah men and women served in the armed forces during this World War II. They are included in an alphabetical card index that lists date and place of birth, name and address of next of kin, marital status, name and address of spouse, and military history for each individual.

Draft Registrations

' Fourth Registration On April 27, 1942, the Selective Service conducted the fourth of six draft registrations related to WWII. The "World War II Selective Service Draft Cards: Fourth Registration, 1942" is often referred to as the “Old Man’s Registration” or the “Old Man’s Draft" because it included men with a date of birth from April 28, 1877 to February 16, 1897. Since there is overlap in the WWI and WWII Selective Service registration, men born in the years 1877 to 1900 may have registered twice and have both WWII and WWI draft records.

Also available at:

U.S.S. Utah

Relocation Records

Korean War (1950–1953)[edit | edit source]

The Korean War was a conflict between North Korea (and its communist allies) and South Korea (with support of the United Nations, primarily the United States). See the Korean War wiki article for information on records and their availability.

Vietnam War (1964–1972)[edit | edit source]

The Vietnam War was a conflict between North Vietnam (and its communist allies) and South Vietnam (with support of its anti-communist allies, including the United States). See the Vietnam War wiki article for information on records and their availability.

National Guard[edit | edit source]

Additional Military Records[edit | edit source]

For information about veteran burials in Utah, see the "Veteran Burial Records" portion of the Utah Cemeteries Wiki article.

The Utah State Archives has a large collection of military records. A current listing of their holdings is available at their Internet site. A published inventory of their military holdings in 1981 is:

  • Utah State Archives and Records Service. Inventory, Military Department, Record Group 027, Microfilms and Microfiche. Salt Lake City, Utah: Archives, 1981. (Family History Library book 979.2 M2.) This gives the accession number, title, period covered, subject, and geography covered by the records.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Michno, Gregory F., Encyclopedia of Indian Wars Western Battles and Skirmishes, 1850-1890. Mountain Press Publishing Co.: Missoula, Montana. c2003. At various libraries (World Cat); FHL book 970.1 M583e; ISBN 0-87842-468-7

Wiki articles describing these collections are found at: