Civil and Indian War History Commission
Active dates:1889 - 1905
Function: To provide for the preparation and publication of troop rosters and a historical narrative of the services of all organizations of troops (battalions, regiments, batteries, and companies) from the state that participated in the Sioux Uprising, and the Civil War (1861-1865).
The Civil and Indian War History Commission was established by the legislature in 1889 (Laws 1889 c278) to provide for the preparation and publication of troop rosters and a historical narrative of the services of all organizations of troops (battalions, regiments, batteries, and companies) from the state that participated in the Sioux Uprising, and the Civil War (1861-1865). Six commissioners were chosen by state military organizations and the commissioners in turn chose William Lochren, former captain of the First Minnesota Infantry Volunteers, as chair, and Christopher C. Andrews, former colonel of the Third Minnesota Infantry Volunteers, as secretary and editor of the history. The commissioners received no salaries, but the commission received a legislative appropriation to cover the costs of publication. Each military organization furnished the commission with a narrative history of its actions during the two wars, and lists of participating troops. The first edition of the book, entitled Minnesota in the Civil and Indian Wars, was published in 1890. In 1891, a second legislative act (Laws 1891 c151) authorized the publication of a second volume of Minnesota in the Civil and Indian Wars, containing official reports and correspondence, and including revisions and corrections of the first edition. The same six members served on the commission. Much of the second volume, published in 1899, was derived from the Rebellion Records of the U.S. War Department; military correspondence of the offices of the governor and the adjutant general; and annual reports of the Minnesota adjutant general.
The members of the commission met periodically to discuss matters relating to editorial policy, production, and distribution of the histories. Ten thousand copies of each volume were printed and distributed to all surviving soldiers who participated in the wars, or to a surviving widow or family member; and to state government officials, public colleges, libraries, state institutions, and the state historical society. The commission ceased meeting after the publication of the second volume, and both of the laws relating to the commission were repealed in 1905 (Reports of the Revision Commission; Statutes 1905 c111).
Commissioners: William Lochren, chair; Christopher Columbus Andrews, secretary and editor; Judson Wade Bishop; Charles Eugene Flandrau; Lucius Frederick Hubbard; John Benjamin Sanborn.
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