The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration - Requesting Copies of Older Military Service Records
Information on how to request copies of older (pre-WWI) military service records from the series held at NARA in Washington, D.C. Those include the following. Volunteers: Military service performed by persons serving during an emergency and whose service was considered to be in the Federal interest, 1775 - 1902. Regular Army: Enlisted personnel, 1789 - October 31, 1912; Officers, 1789 - June 30, 1917. Navy: Enlisted personnel, 1798 - 1885; Officers, 1798 - 1902. Marine Corps: Enlisted personnel, 1798 - 1904; Some officers, 1798 - 1895. Coast Guard: Persons who served in predecessor agencies to the U.S. Coast Guard: the Revenue Cutter Service (Revenue Marine), the Life-Saving Service, and the Lighthouse Service, 1791 - 1919. Confederate States: Persons who rendered military service for the Confederate States government in its armed forces, 1861 - 1865. Veterans Records: Claims files for pensions based on Federal military service, 1775 - 1916 and bounty land warrant application files relating to claims based on wartime service, 1775 - 1855.