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Frequently Asked Questions


General Questions About This Service

  1. How long will it take to receive a response to my request?
  2. What if I don't have an email address or credit card (required to use this service)?
  3. How do I become a member of the Wisconsin Historical Society?
  4. What if I want a refund?
  5. What if I have a question or comment about this service?

1. How long will it take to receive a response to my request?

Orders are usually mailed within two weeks of receipt.

2. What if I don't have an email address or credit card (required to use this service)?

A valid credit card and a current email address are required to use the Wisconsin Genealogical Research Service. If you do not have both of these, you may still request genealogical research separately via regular mail, through our Library Reference service. Visit  Requesting Research Assistance for more information.

If you are interested in obtaining your own email account, a variety of Internet Service Provider (ISP) companies offer free email, such as Yahoo Mail or Google's Gmail.

3. How do I become a member of the Wisconsin Historical Society?

To join the Wisconsin Historical Society, visit our membership page.

4. What if I want a refund?

No refunds can be given on orders submitted with errors. Responsibility for providing correct information lies solely with you. Before you begin, you are urged to read the Terms of Service. You provide the research information to us, through our online forms: the subject's name, dates, location, etc. The shipping address to which we reply appears exactly as you type it. Please review your order before submitting and proceeding with the online payment. We therefore are not responsible if, despite all the foregoing safeguards, you provide erroneous information.

We will redo a research request at no charge:

  • if our staff has somehow erred.
  • if a package shipped from us with the correct address has miscarried, we will promptly send another copy.

We will issue a refund:

  • if we cannot fill your order.
  • if you can provide documentation that your credit card was used fraudulently.

If you think you qualify to have your request redone or your fee refunded, please email the Wisconsin Genealogical Research Service at historydocs@wisconsinhistory.org and a staff member will reply promptly.

5. What if I have a question or comment about this service?

You may submit questions or comments to the Wisconsin Genealogical Research Service using our Feedback form. Please do not use this form to request genealogy or other research assistance. We will reply to questions only if an email address is included.


Civil War Service Records

  1. What will I receive?
  2. What is the cost for a Civil War service record research request?
  3. How do I find out which regiment(s) a soldier served in?
  4. My soldier served in more than one company and/or regiment. Can I submit one order for copies of all his records?
  5. My soldier lived in Wisconsin after the Civil War. Do you have his records?
  6. Can I request a refund?

1. What will I receive?

You will receive copies of the Wisconsin Civil War Regimental Muster and Descriptive Rolls (aka the "Red" and "Blue" books) for the soldier whose regiment and company you specify in your order. These volumes document a soldier's name, regiment, company, rank, and date of mustering (enrollment) into service. Many records also include a birthplace, age, residence, occupation, marital status, physical description, muster out date and service notes (wounded, died, deserted, etc.). Records for Wisconsin Cavalry, Infantry and Artillery units are more informative than those available for various U.S. and special regiments raised in Wisconsin (i.e. Milwaukee Cavalry). Generally, records exist for men who served in regiments organized within the state of Wisconsin.

Sample Red Book Pages
left side right side
Sample "Blue Book" entry
left side right side

You will also receive a copy request form generated from your online request. Information on this form will indicate the result of our research and any notes pertinent to your request. Your Order # and Customer # appear in the upper right corner of this form. Please note this information when contacting the service regarding the result of your copy request.

Note: The quality (i.e. readability) of a record copy may vary greatly. Our goal is to provide you with the best copy possible.

2. What is the cost for a Civil War service record research request?

Record type WHS Members WI resident, non-member Out-of-state, non-member
WI Civil War Service Records $18.00 $20.00 $20.00
Sales Tax calculated for Wisconsin-based orders only

All amounts are in U.S. Dollars and include domestic postage.

**To learn how to become a member, visit How to Become a Member of the Wisconsin Historical Society. Until your membership is activated and you enter a valid membership number into the online order form, your orders will be billed at the non-Society Member rate.**

3. How do I find out which regiment(s) a soldier served in?

Two Rosters (indexes) of soldiers are available. One is arranged alphabetically, and the other is arranged by regiment and company. These printed volumes have been scanned and placed on the Wisconsin Historical Society Web site along with instructions on how to search them. Click to Search the Indexes.

Note: We cannot fill requests for individuals who do not appear in these finding aids.

4. My soldier served in more than one company and/or regiment. Can I submit one order for copies of all his records?

No, at this time we are unable to process an order for more than one item at a time. Please fill out a separate order for each company/regiment combination.

5. My soldier lived in Wisconsin after the Civil War. Do you have his records?

We only hold records for men who served in regiments organized within the state of Wisconsin. Visit the online Rosters (indexes) to search for a particular soldier. Click to Search the Indexes.

6. Can I request a refund?

Your payment ensures that trained staff will always conduct the search for the record you specify. We rely on you to search the online Rosters (indexes) and then fill out the order form correctly. No refunds can be given for orders submitted with errors.

If we are unable to locate any service record for a soldier listed in the online Rosters (indexes) your card will be credited the copy fee. If you believe you qualify for a refund, please email us at historydocs@wisconsinhistory.org.

For more information, see General FAQ #4.

Who will you find?

Society members receive a 10-percent discount on:

  • Vital records and microfilm
  • Civil War service records
  • Plus more!

Become a member today!

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