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War of 1812 Pension Digitization Project

The Pension Records from the War of 1812 are among the most requested documents at the National Archives. Unfortunately, these fragile documents are in urgent need of digitization. After five years of hard work, the community raised more than $3 million to support the digitization of these important materials.In support of this monumental task of digitizing 7.2 million pages, provided a dollar for dollar matching grant, so every dollar contributed will make four more pages accessible and free for everyone.

  • We did it! With your help, we raised more than $3 million to preserve these important records.


The National Archives reports that these War of 1812 pension files are among the heaviest requested materials. With that level of use, these valuable records, available in no other format, are in danger of grave deterioration.


As these valuable historical documents are digitized, they will be made available to all at no cost, and the original pension files can be retired to much less active use.


Completed images and associated indexing are posted incrementally and will be added in the coming months. Genealogists, historians, teachers, patriotic societies, and history buffs all have access to the images that have been digitized right now. Images will be offered for free at Fold3 indefinitely.

A Community Digitization Project

Sparked by the 200th anniversary of the start of the War of 1812, the genealogical
community has come together for this monumental task.


The Federation of Genealogical Societies has created an organization to recognize those individuals and societies who have given at least $250 to the Preserve the Pensions fund. This new organization, named the Society of Preservation Patriots, is dedicated to raising funds for preserving critical, historic records and genealogical data for future generations. Learn More


Spread the Word

Get brochures, press releases and more to spread the word about Preserve the Pensions.