The following is a Plus Edition article that was written by and is copyright by Michael John Neill.
From a genealogy standpoint, the best pension file is one for a widow who can't remember where she got married. In this "Casefile Clues" column, we look at one such case which I found quite by accident.
The Revolutionary War Pension files are one of the really nice databases on Footnote.com. The microfilmed copies of these records were converted to digital format and placed on the Footnote.com subscription website. When these images were first uploaded, I almost did not search them. I thought I had already searched the pension files adequately for my families during that time period. I had used Virgil White's Genealogical Abstracts of Revolutionary War Pensions and had searched them for all the names of my Revolution era ancestors. But I went ahead and performed a search.
I was very surprised when I searched for Wickiser and located references to Abraham and Catherine Wickiser, ancestors of my wife. I was certain I had searched for Wickisers in White's Abstracts as I had entered their names on my research log for that book. Not only were the Wickisers mentioned in a pension file, but they both provided testimony for the claimant. Their statements in the pension file of Elam Blain were done to help his widow obtain a pension. It was a find. But I was frustrated with myself. The name of Wickiser was easy to read and listed in the pension file several times. How could have I overlooked it in White's Abstracts?
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