Membership in the Sons of Confederate Veterans is open to all male descendants of any veteran who served honorably in the Confederate armed forces. Membership can be obtained through either lineal or collateral family lines and kinship to a veteran must be documented genealogically. The minimum age for full membership is twelve, but there is no minimum for Cadet Membership.

Applicants should complete an application form, along with a detailed genealogy describing their relationship to the veteran, and proof of his service. This should include his name, unit, state of service, and information as to his honorable service [killed / wounded / captured / discharged].

Identifying your lineage back to a Confederate veteran typically starts with family records and the genealogy section at your local library. Reference books are available for several North Carolina counties that provide a compilation of family histories, which may provide a wealth of information. Libraries may also provide access to on-line tools such as Ancestry Library Edition and others. The fee based on-line service, Ancestry.com, provides convenient access to numerous types of records. Ancestors born between 1826 and 1843 will be the most likely to have served, while those slightly outside of this range could could have served as well.

Sources for soldier’s service records include:

      • Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System (CWSS)
        A database provided by the National Park Service. This can be used to perform broad searches based on names or other criteria, where the results will identify the unit they served with.
      • North Carolina Troops, 1861-1865: A Roster
        This multi-volume set is generally available at most public libraries in the state. Once you know which unit the soldier belonged to (e.g. 27th Regiment North Carolina Troops), an overview of their service can be found. Members of local camps often have these available as well.
      • Fold3
        This fee based on-line service provides copies of service records and potentially of other period documents.

Camp members can also assist potential members with research, while some camps have a designated Genealogist.

Joining through a local camp is the typical process. You can find camps in your area, and their meeting times/location, from the North Carolina Division web site. Visitors are always welcome to attend camp meetings, so feel free to visit various camps. Once you have selected a camp to join, submit your application form, supporting documentation and membership dues to the camp staff. Following a review of the documents and approval of the camp membership, the application will be forwarded to the division and national headquarters.

As a member, you will receive:

      • membership certificate
      • participation in local, state and national events
      • camp newsletter (most camps)
      • access to the North Carolina Division newsletter, The Carolina Confederate (published bimonthly)
      • subscription to the Confederate Veteran magazine (published bimonthly)
      • be eligible for the Sons of Confederate Veterans license plate

 

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