Why did my family not serve in the military?

Question: do you have any idea why or where I could look to find out why none of them were in the military at all during the Civil War, WWI or WWII?


Why was my ancestor not in the Civil War?

Many military records can be found online

As far as military service, having been born in 1818, {the ancestor} would have been 43 at the start of the Civil War in 1861.  He would have been classified as too old.  I’ve found individuals born in the late 1820s and 1830s in military records, but not anyone born as early as 1818 in the research I’ve done.  {Not impossible–but I’ve never seen it}.


What about the other wars?

As far as why no one else served in the military, it could be because they were too old, was physically unable, had a family to support, was against their religion, personal preference or simply had no interest.


You may want to check the WWI Draft Registration Cards to see if anyone is listed on the draft card.  These records cover men who were 18-45 years of age.  Meaning, any man born between 1872-1900 should have a World War I draft registration card, whether they served or not.

In October 1940, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law a peacetime draft, due to the rising world tensions.  All men age 18-65 were required to register for the draft.  Men registered between November 1940-October 1946, with over 10 million men registering.  {Sadly records for 8 southern states were destroyed before they were filmed}.  So men born between 1877-1928 should have registered for the draft.

Many that served in the Revolutionary War and Civil War were volunteers


Information may be on the draft cards why they did not serve.

Also, check census records to discover if there was a disability.

Some religions do not believe in war, so this is also worth investigating.

For what reasons have you found ancestors that did not serve in the military?

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