Society of Civil War Families of Highland County (SCWFHC) is a new lineage society being introduced this spring by the Southern Ohio Genealogical Society. It is open to direct or collateral descendants of any person with Highland County ties who served in the Civil War — Union or Confederate.
Yes, Highland County had soldiers that joined the Confederacy. Your Highland County ancestor will also qualify if they joined such groups as “Squirrel Hunters” and “Spies” male or female. Families were sometimes split on their convictions, and northerners called “Butternuts” joined the south.
When you begin looking at your male and female lines, such as grandparents, great-grandparents or great-great-grandparents, most will find there are very few people living today that will not have had a relative serving in some capacity during the Civil War. Remember, you can also qualify with collateral relatives, such as an aunt’s or uncle’s service as long as your relative soldier lived or died in Highland County. A collateral relative is any blood relative who is not your “direct” ancestor, i.e. cousins, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, siblings.
More than 200 years ago, men who had helped take up arms against England during the revolutionary War received instead of money, land lying in southern Ohio between the Scioto and Miami rivers in what would become Highland County. Here in a beautiful but primitive wooded forest, they brought their families, cleared the land, built homes, churches and schools, conducted their business, raised their families, died and were buried near where they lived out their daily lives.
War is never desired. War is horrible to say the least. Only those who have been there can really appreciate that description. Only those who have spent up to 280 days and nights in continuous engagement know what that stress is like. Only those who went through the bitter cold of Valley Forge, the snows and arctic like cold of North Korea, or the disease of Andersonville prison camp can understand what living and fighting in such environments is like.
We should never memorialize war, but we should memorialize those who have given a portion of their lives and for those who have given life itself in the service of this county. For these ancestors the Southern Ohio Genealogical Society is introducing this new lineage society to honor those who came before us and fought for the north or the south, during the Great Rebellion.
The application process is simple. The first page will require documentation of the Civil War military unit/units to which your relative belonged, enlistment and discharge dates, and additional pages must who the line of descent/relationship to you. The pages are no different than those pages required for our other two lineage groups, 1st and 2nd Families of Highland County.
Applications and additional information may be down-loaded from our website — www.sogs.info — you may request one via an email attachment at firstname.lastname@example.org, or U.S. mail at P.O. Box 414, Hillsboro, Ohio 45133. The completed applications are due April 30 and must meet all listed criteria. Applicants must be paid members of SOGS.
If your application and supporting documentation is approved by the SCWFHC committee, you and your Civil War veteran will be recognized at the SOGS annual meeting, held in June each year with a certificate and badge. And we are now on Facebook so visit us at Southern Ohio Genealogical Society of Highland County Ohio.
Submitted by Dwight Crum, president, Southern Ohio Genealogical Society.