Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Robert C. Kenzer

Second Advisor

Dr. John L. Gordon, Jr.

Third Advisor

Hugh A. West


The Civil War, more than any other conflict in American history, left a legacy of maimed and disabled veterans. In Virginia a social consciousness began to develop during the war which led to both private and public attempts to aid these men. Following the war this philanthropy was continued by the General Assembly with a series of acts intended to provide for the disabled veterans of the Commonwealth. Initially a small scale program to provide artificial limbs to amputees, this initiative quickly expanded to include disabled veterans of all types. It was from this aid program that a general state Confederate pension system developed in 1888. This study examines the early accomplishments of this aid program. In order to provide insight into the individuals assisted by the program, it focuses on the disabled veterans of Augusta and Chesterfield counties. This thesis relies heavily on the records of Virginia's Auditor of Public Accounts, the General Assembly's legislative record, and the manuscript census.

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