In honor of Independence Day, today's collection of free genealogy resources focuses on the Revolutionary War. Many of us can trace our roots to soldiers who fought from 1775 to 1783 to gain America's independence from England.
Colonial Ancestors has several resources that may be helpful for tracing Revolutionary War era ancestors. The first is a list of officers who took oaths of allegiance at Valley Forge in 1778. This list spans ten pages. Unfortunately, it is not searchable so you will have to browse each page until you are able to find your ancestor. However, it does give the rank of the individual and, in some cases, the regiment they were with.
There are seven pages that give a chronological record of the battles and engagements fought during the Revolution. As with the officers' lists, these aren't searchable, but you can read through to see if your ancestor's name is mentioned.
If you have ancestors from Pawlet, Vermont, which was previously part of the New Hampshire Colony, there are two resources of interest. The first talks about the area's Revolutionary War history. About halfway down the page is a list of veterans who settled in the area with their age and the year they died. Part of the names are hyperlinked to another website that has a brief biography of the individual, which may include genealogy information. The second resource contains extracts. Some names from the area are mentioned.
The final free genealogy resource offered by Colonial Ancestors is the Women of the Revolution page. This page talks about notable women of the era, including Deborah Samson, who disguised herself as a man and fought alongside the soldiers during the war.
The American Merchant Marine at War website has two resources you will want to check out. Just scroll about a third of the way down the page and you will see both in the left hand column. The first, Privateers and Mariners in the Revolutionary War, talks about the forces on water during the war. Several names are mentioned.
The second resource, American Prisoners of the Revolution, lists the British ships at Wallabout Bay used as hospitals or prisons. A little further down the page is a long list of the men imprisoned on the Old Jersey. Most of these names were found in papers of the British War Department, but there are some names that were added after descendants or others noted the individual was imprisoned there. The added names are noted by an asterisk (*).
Olive Tree Genealogy has several free genealogy resources for finding Revolutionary War ancestors. These include several muster rolls, a list of men from Pennsylvania who joined the British Army and information on several brigades. Also on the site, you can find links to other websites that have information on the war and its participants.