Civil War Pension of George W. McElroy

File Contributed by Riley Goodin

The following is a synopsis of the papers making up the pension file of George W. McElroy, civil war veteran, who served in the 13th KY volunteer infantry as a corporal in Company B. George W. McElroy and his descendants lived in Montgomery and Wilson County areas of Kansas from
about 1871. When transcribing I did not correct spelling or grammar errors. 

George Washington McElroy was the son of Francis McElroy and Rachael Bailey and was born in Adair County, Kentucky. About 1867 George removed his family from Kentucky to Missouri and then on to Kansas.

Date Description of Document

1-16-1865 Examining Surgeon's Certificate. "Minnie ball struck
left arm middle third fractured ... amputation was
perfomed ...". Signed by E. J. Vaughan - Examining

1-19-1865 Set of two fill in the blank forms titled Officer's
Certificate to Disability of Soldier - Invalid 
Pension. One is signed by O. B. Patterson Late Capt 
Co B 13th KY Vol Infty the other by E. S. Cooper Asst 
Surgeon. Both documents were executed in Jefferson 
County, Kentucky. They both state George McElroy as
26 years of age, 5 ft 8 in fair complexion blue eyes
light hair. Both state he was disabled by a gun shot
wound at the Battlefield of Lost Mountain, Georgia
June 17th, 1864 "at the hands of the Rebel Enemy in 
his left wrist joint whiched caused amputation of said
arm". Document states he is totally disabled. 

1-19-1865 Fill in the blank form Witnesses' Affidavit - Invalid
Pension Claim. Document executed in Adair County, KY
and was signed by W. Perryman and William Blair (with
his x mark) and attested to the facts of the bullet

1-19-1865 Fill in the blank form Invalid Pension Application.
Reciept from Dr. E. J. Vaughan attached charging $1.50
for examination. Dr. Vaughan states on the form "that 
he is now totally unable to follow said occupationor 
any other that requires manual labor". The form 
states that he has lived in Louisville, Kentucky since 
leaving the service. This form was witnessed by Henry 
C. Gosser and ? Perryman, both resients of Adair 
County, Kentucky.

1-25-1865 Notice that George W. McElroy was admitted at a rate 
of $8 per month.

2-10-1865 Form letter from Department of Interior, Pension 
Office requesting info on George W. McElroy. Written
on bottom of form was "wounded in action June 17, 

2-18-1865 Adjutant General's Office "George W. McElroy was
enrolled on the 8th day of October 1861 at Camp Andy
Johnson in Co.B 13th Regiment of KY Volunteers to 
serve 3 years. Mustered in as a private on the 31rst 
day of December 1861 at Camp Hobson, KY ... September 
and October 1864 he is reported A corporal in Hospital 
Knoxville, Tenn he was wounded in the month of June 
1864. How wounded and date not given and nature of 
wound not given. He was mustered out with his company 
January 12th 1865 ..." This was all entered on a fill
in the blank form.

2-23-1865 Form establishing George McElroy's pension at $8.00 
per month.

2-25-1865 Certicate putting George McElroy's pension at $8 per 
month commencing January 12, 1865. Paid through the 
Louisville Agency. "Amputation of left arm".

11-5-1866 Fill in the blank form Application for Increase of 
Invalid Pension. It was executed by George McElroy 
in Adair County, Kentucky. He gives his address as 
"on a road leading from Columbia to Greensburgh, Ky 
about 9 miles from Columbia ...". The form was 
witnessed by ? Perryman and Silas M. Roy.

12-28-1866 Form increasing George McElroy's pension to $15.00 
per month.

1-3-1867 Certificate putting George McElroy's pension at $15
commencing June 6, 1866. Paid through the Louisville 

10-7-1869 Hand written court document executed in Buchanan 
County, Missouri asking that the location of pension 
payments be moved from Louisville, KY to Macon City, 
MO. It further states that his current pension is 
$15/month. Evidence of identity was provided by
Eugene Triplett and James Conover who claimed they
had been acquainted with George for over ten years.

6-28-1871 Application for artificial limb or commutation of the
same. On the form George opted for commutation and 
an award of $50 for doing so. The document was 
executed in Neodosha, Kansas.

3-25-1876 Fill in the blank form executed in Montgomery County
Kansas. Witnessed by Neil Mclead and J. W. Burk, 
both of Montomery County, Kansas.

8-19-1876 Hand written document from Wilson County, Kansas
stating McElroy's desire to move the location of
pension payment from Louisville, KY to Topeka, KS.
Document states his Post Office address as Neodesha,
Wilson County, Kansas. It sates that he has been a
resident of Kansas for five years.

12-13-1881 Fill in the blank application identical to document
executed on 1-11-1882. The contents including the 
filled in blanks were identical. This document was 
attested by P. H. Gallagher and J. A. Hatcher who 
both reside at Neodesha, Kansas. This document was
executed in Wilson County, KS.

1-11-1882 Fill in the blank application for Original Invalid
Pension. At the top is subscribed "New Disability".
Document states "in the month of March 1863 he 
contracted diarrhea rheumatism, and disease of 
kidneys from exposure and hardship incident to the 
service ... disease came chronic and was followed 
by dropsy". He was treated at a St. Louis, 
MO hospital. Document further states he has lived 
in Adair County, KY until 1869 and two years in MO
and KS the balance of the time. The document was 
attested by James Williams (son in law) and W. B. 
McElroy (brother). Both are residents of Neodesha.
This document was executed in Montgomery County, KS.

2-1-1882 Fill in the blank form Examining Surgeon's 
Certificate describes George McElroy as 5 ft 6 inches
144 pounds complexion dark age 44 respiration 18 
pulse 70. His condition is described as follows: 
"Gun shot wound of arm just below the elbow entailing 
loss of limb entitles applicant total 3rd grade 
symptoms of scratic rheumatism of right leg which is 
slightly atrophied increasing one inch less in 
circumference than limb of opposite side entitles 
applicant to one half of total. Pensioner well 
nourished abdomen elastic functions of assimilation 
normal. Not sufficient evidence of disease of kidneys 
to entitle to rating 2 find his disability, as 
described above, to be equal to, and entitling him to 
Total 3rd grade and one half 'Total'". Document was 
executed in Wilson County, Kansas by Dr. T. Blakeslee.

4-22-1882 Fill in the blank affadavit. Document is intended 
to correct 1-11-1882 document. It was filled out by
George McElroy. It states "I first contacted diahee 
(sic) and disease of kidneys six miles south of
Nashville, Tenn. March AD 1862. I contracted 
rheumatism at Munfordsville KY. This document was 
executed in Wilson County, KS.

5-1-1882 Fill in the blank form Affidavit For Commissioned 
Officer or Comrade. Document executed at Columbia, 
Adair County, Kentucky. Silas M. Roy signed the 
document attesting to the "rheumatism in the hips and 
legs" the illness for which George was applying for 
a pension increase. Silas states he was a private 
in Company B of same regiment as George. He also 
stated he knew it to be true "cause I was in camp 
with him".

5-5-1882 Fill in the blank form Affidavit For Commissioned 
Officer or Comrade. Document executed at Glenfork, 
Adair County, Kentucky. W. C. Cable signed the 
document (with his x mark) attesting to the "diarear
and Kidney disease" and "had a spel of sicness said
by the docters to be rheumatism in the hips and legs" 
Both the afflictions for which George was applying 
for a pension increase. Silas states he was a 
private in Company B of same regiment as George. He 
also stated he knew it to be true "being a camered in 
camp with him and hafe to nurse him".

3-3-1883 Notice that pension for George was raised to $24.00.

3-17-1883 Request from Pension Office to the Adjutant General
requesting a full report from the regimental and
company returns.

6-5-1883 War Department Adjutant General's Office letterhead.
The report states the followin concerning George
McElroy's service. "Febry 28th 62 first muster roll
on file he is reported absent sick - April 30th 62
same, to April 30th 64: present. June 30th absent 
wounded, place or date not stated; (Regt was in 
action at Resecca GA May 14th 64, at Ettamah river 
GA May 24 of 64 and Dallas GA June 27th of 64 ...
List of men wounded and sick sent to Altoona from 
field Hospitl 2 Div 23 A.C. shows him wounded wrist 
joint comp fract ulna no operation ... No evidence 
of any other disability. Books of organization are 
not on file.

8-11-1883 Hand written document executed in Adair County by
Nathan G. Butler, First Lt., Company B, 13th KY Vol.
Nathan stated "George was a member of said company" 
and "He states he was with the company on its march 
to Shiloh and that at Nashville or rather about six
miles south of Nashville the said McElroy was taken
sick ...". The document also states "he remembers 
his brothers William and Joshua Butler carried his 
gun for him part of the time on the march to Shiloh
and saw McElroy participate in the said battle of
Shiloh although sick at the time".

11-9-1883 Sworn statement executed in Hart County, Kentucky by 
Flavius J. Taylor, assistant surgeon of 13th Regt KY
Vols. Stated he knew George McElroy before the war
and stated he was a man of "ordinary good health and 
physical ability ... while with his command in the
line of duty on the route from Nashville Tennessee to 
Shiloh the said McElroy became disabled to go further
from the effects of diarrhea and general debility and 
sent to a hospital at Nashville ... he did not see 
said soldier again untill the summer of 62 when he 
rejoined his command at Battle in East Tennessee on 
the Tennessee River but he was still in feeble health 
and was detailed to give medicine as nurse in the 
hospital ... that during the winter of 1862 and 1863 
the said Regt was on post at Munfordsville, Kentucky 
and while there the said McElroy contracted 

10-15-1884 Fill in the blank form Examining Surgeon's Certificate
In The Case Of An Applicant For Increase Of Pension 
completed at Independence Montgomery County, Kansas.
Increase warrented on the ground that "his disability
is increasing". He is described as 5 feet 8 1/2 inches
and 145 pounds. His condition was described as follows
"loss of left arm ... abdomen round and firm ... slight
tenderness in colons ... stomach slight tenderness 
under spleen ... and it is our opinion that what he 
attributes to kidneys is lumbago ...". The form was 
signed by Dr. John L. Davis and two others.

12-1-1884 Hand written court document executed in Wilson County
Kansas providing testimony of Zilpha Ann McElroy. 
She stated George was kicked by horse on November 21,
1884 and died four days later. She gave the following
birth days and ages of her children "Mrs. Mollie H. 
McElroy age 23 at next birth day July 15/85 Wm G.
McElroy age 18 at next birth day February 6/85, Sallie
A. McElroy age 14 November 14/84, Maggie L. McElroy
age 10 July 1/85, Rosa A. McElroy age 7 July 17/85,
Montana D. McElroy age 4 May 15/85 herself age 47
march 6/85. Document was witnessed by J. O. Wilson
and James Williams (son-in-law) both residents of 
Neodesha, Kansas.

4-7-1885 Fill in the blank form for Accrued Pension. This
document was executed in Wilson County, Kansas and
contains the affadavits of A. J. Wilkinson and A. G.
Watson. They affirmed the following "they were near
neighbors and friends to them in Adair County, 
Kentucky knew they were married July 31, 1858 and 
have lived together as husband and wife ever since.

5-13-1885 Fill in the blank form Declaration for Original 
Pension of a Widow - Child or Children under Sixteen
years of age surviving. Document was executed in
Wilson County, Kansas. Simple application for 
widow's pension. Document was witnessed by James
Williams (Zilpha's son in-law) and Frank McElroy
(Zilpha's nephew by her deceased husband's brother 
William), both of Neodesha, Kansas.

10-5-1886 Typed court document executed in Wilson County, KS
concerning testimony of Dr. J. A. Hatcher who said he
had treated George from 1871 until his death. He 
stated that George suffered from lumbago and 
rheumatism he believed to be related to his servive
during the late rebellion. He stated he waited upon
George after he had been kicked by a horse which was
the immediate cause of death. He stated McElroy 
would have likely recovered had it not been for 
lumbago and rheumatism.

3-15-1887 Fill in the blank form from Department of the Interior
asking for an endorsement of Dr. J. A. Hatcher. The
back of form was endorsed in Neodesha, Kansas 
attesting to the good reputation of Dr. Hatcher by the 
Neodesha Postmaster whose signature I was unable to 

10-19-1888 Hand written court document executed in Wilson County
Kansas containing testimony of Zilpha A. Bush. She 
stating that she is the applicant for pension as a 
widow of George W. McElroy. Also that she remarried
but he was also deceased. She was seeking a pension
for the time between the death of George and her 
second marriage and for the children of her marriage
to George. She stated the following "while the said 
George W. McElroy died from the immediate cause of 
being kicked by a horse, yet at the same time it is 
true his health was very poor - his system out of
order - he was diseased so that the injury he received
from the kick of the horse might not have proved fatal
had he been in good health ... his left side was 
wasting away ...I might add also that he was sick the
day he was kicked, and had been vomiting ..." She 
gave her post office address as Montgomery County, KS.
She signed with her x mark. The document was 
witnessed by James Williams (son-in-law) and Benjamin
L.J. Jones (neighbor).

Another hand written court document executed in 
Wilson County, Kansas containing testimony of Benjamin
L. J. Jones. Basically he affirmed the testimony of
Zilpha given the same day. He stated he helped bury
George. This document was also contains testimony of
James Williams "he is the son-in-law of the said 
George W. McElroy ... and has no interest in the 
result of the widow and minor children getting 
pension." James states he is a resident of Neodesha,

11-26-1888 Hand written court document executed in Wilson County,
Kansas. The document contains the testimony of Dr. J. 
A. Hatcher. "I knew him (George McElroy) from 1861 to 
the time of his death. I was his family physician from 
1871 to the time of his death. He was a sound and able
bodied man when he enlisted in the army. He came out 
crippled and in a diseased condition. I know he was 
diseased - in a bad state of health - and was on the
physical decline at the time. His death was the 
immediate cause of the kick of a horse, but he might 
not have died from the injury had he been strong and in 
good health. He was kicked on the right side near the
liver. I know he was afflicted with kidney disease, 
chronic diarrhea and rheumatism and I treated him for 
those troubles more or less while I was his family 
physician and I believe those complaints may have 
contributed to his death or least lessened the chances
of his recovery".

2-4-1889 Widow's pension rejection notice. "Rejection death of
soldier not chargeable to his military service".

11-4-1891 A package signed by Daniel Cline, Probate Judge, in 
Montgomery County, Kansas. Pakage contains the court
document from the guardianship appointment of Benjamin
L. J. Jones. The orinal document is dated Nov 11, 
1895. The document states that William G. and Sarah A.
both minors over 14 had appointed Mr. Jones as their 
guardian. It also states that Zilpha A. Bush appeared
and "files her sworn petition showing to the Court that
the foregoing named minors (William G. and Sarah A.) 
and the following named minors to wit: Maggie Lee 
McElroy - Rosa Alice McElroy - and Montana McElroy are
of and in said County of Montgomery ... and have 
property in said County which needs care and she asks
the Court to appoint Benjamin L. J. Jones guardian of 
said minors". The court accepted his $1,000 bond and
appointed him guardian.

Fill in the blank form Declaration For Children Under
Sixteen Years Of Age for Rosie A. and Montana D. 
McElroy. In this document Benjamin L. J. Jones states
he is their legal guardian and appoints G. E. Gilmore
as his attorney. He gives his age as 51. Birthdays 
given for children as July 18, 1877 and May 14, 1881.
This document was executed in Montgomery County, 
Kansas and was witnessed by J. G. Hambleton and G. L.
Remington both of Independence, Kansas. They stated
they had known Mr. Jones for 8 and 18 years 

11-9-1891 Fill in the blank affadavit executed in Wilson County
Kansas by Maria Sumner who was the midwife at the 
births of Rosa and Montana. States birth dates as 
July 18, 1877 for Rosa and May 14, 1881 for Montana.

11-24-1891 Fill in the blank form Declaration For Widow's Pension
executed in Wilson County, Kansas. "Zilpha A. McElroy 
aged 52 years, a resident of the town of Sycamore, 
County of Montgomery ... her post-office address is La
Fountaine, Wilson County, Kansas ...". The form was 
attested to by Sallie A. Hurst and Charles Yoe. Sallie
resides at Lay, Kansas and Carles Yoe at Independence, 

12-12-1891 Rejection notice to Zilpha sent to La Fountaine, Wilson
County, Kansas.

1-14-1892 A package signed by Daniel Cline, Probate Judge, in 
Montgomery County, Kansas. Pakage contains affadavit 
of death for George W. McElroy. It was filed by 
Zilpha McElroy on 12-20-1884 and Thomas Harrison was
Probate Judge.

3-8-1892 Hand written court document containing testimony of J.
E. Taylor and E. L. Taylor, both of La Fountaine, 
Kansas - ages 47 and 42. "That they was personally
acquainted with George W. McElroy from 1860 to the 
time of his death and that to the best of their 
knowledge and belief said George W. McElroy was not
previously married when he married Zelpha A. McElroy
widow of George W. McElroy". The document was 
executed in Wilson County, Kansas.

3-9-1892 Copy of marriage license of Henry Bush and Zilpha 
McElroy from probate court of Montgomery County, 

3-10-1892 Fill in the blank affadavit executed in Wilson County
Kansas by Robert Orr attesting to the ages of Rosa A.
and Montana D. McElroy "surving him who were under 
16 years of age Nov 7, 1891". He stated he knew 
these facts since he lived as a neighbor for over 14

Fill in the blank affadavit executed in Montgomery 
County, Kansas and containing a statement from 
Benjamin L. J. Jones. He states about Zilpha "That 
the only means of support she has is secured by her 
working her indivual half interest in 120 acres of 
land and that the entire amount that she has been able 
to make off her interest in all the estate of George W. 
McElroy does not exceed $75.00 per year. That he knows 
these facts from living a near neighbor to the family 
for 21 years and assiting in the administration of the 
estate of George W. McElroy and from being the guardian 
of his children. That he knows $75.00 per year is not 
sufficient for her support and that this amount is only 
obtained by the personal labor of Zilpha A. McElroy.

3-11-1892 Fill in the blank affadavit executed in Wilson County
Kansas by Emma Callahan attesting to the ages of Rosa 
A. and Montana D. McElroy "surving him who were under 
16 years of age Nov 7, 1891". She stated she knew 
these facts since she lived as a near neighbor.

Hand written document entered into the record of the
court at Wilson County, Kansas. The document was 
attested by Dr. J. A. Hatcher. In this document he
states "That he has been acquainted with the claimant
Zilpha A. McElroy for 19 years past during which time 
he has visited her family in his capacity as physician 
frequently: that he knows that on or about the 25th 
day of November 1884 George W. McElroy, the husband of 
said Zilpha A. McElroy died; that on or about the 27th 
of October 1885 the claimant was remarried to one 
Henry Bush and that on or about the 15th day of May, 
1886 said Henry Bush died also and that the claimant 
has not since remarried; that he was her physician 
shortly after the birth of the two children named 
below and knows that they were born on or about the 
dates mentioned and that they are still living. Rosa
A. McElroy born in Montgomery County, Kansas July 18, 
1877 and Montana D. McElroy born in Montgomery County, 
Kansas May 14, 1881; that he has no record of these 
births but has a clear recollection of the events and 
is confident the above dates are substantially correct 

Hand written court document executed in Wilson County, 
Kansas. This document contains the statements of Emma
Callahan and Martha McLeod aged 30 and 37 years whose 
PO addresses were LaFountaine and Neodosha, Wilson 
County, Kansas. "That they are personnally acquainted 
with above named claimant from the year 1874 and the 
year 1875 respectively. That they knew her as the wife 
and afterwards as the widow of said George W. McElroy; 
that to the best of their recollection said George W. 
McElroy died on or about Nov 25, 1884; that his widow 
Zilpha McElroy now has two living children who were 
under 16 years of age on Nov 17, 1891, viz Rosa A. 
McElroy born on or about July 18, 1877 and Montana D. 
McElroy born on or about May 14, 1881; they futhermore 
testify that on or about Oct 27, 1885, Zelpha A. McElroy 
was remarried to Henry Bush and that said Henry Bush 
died on or about the 15th day of May 1886 that she had 
no children by said Bush and that the claimant has not 
since remarried; that the claimants present and only 
means of support is by her working her undivided 
one-half interest in 120 acres of land, one 80 of which 
is worth about $10 per acre and the other, an unimproved 
40 about $2.50 per acre and that her portion of the 
income from this property will not exceed $100 per annum; 
that they do not believe this amount sufficient for her 
support and that she has no other source of income."

3-24-1892 Letter from Department of Interior Pension Office
asking for clarification on spelling of Zilpha's name.
The response was "Zilpha A. McElroy". It was sent 
back from La Fountaine, Kansas.

4-20-1892 Fill in the blank form Original Pension of Minor 
Children showing admission.

Fill in the blank form Widow's Pension showing rejection
"claimant remarried prior to passage of Act June 27, 

4-29-1892 Notice granting $2 per month pension for Rosa A. and 
Montana D. commencing November 7, 1891 and ending May 13 
1897. (Montana D. turned 16 on May 14, 1897).

7-16-1895 (Note from author - I have no idea what was going on
here but the information concerning ages and 
birthdates was grossly in error. Fill in blank form
Guardian of Minor Children for Pension (word Guardian 
stricken). Ages given for Rosa and Maggie were 25 and
21 respectively with birth dates as November 14 1870 
and July ?, 1874. PO was given as Castello, Montgomery
County, Kansas. Both Sarah and Maggie appointed John
Wedderburn of Washington D.C. as their attorney. This
document was executed in Montgomery County, Kansas and 
was witnessed by J. W. Hardind and L. R. Spradling both
of Independence, Kansas.

9-16-1895 Typed court document executed in Wilson County, Kansas
containing testimony of Zilpha A. McElroy - she was not 
using her surname BUSH here. She stated the following 
"on or about December 1884 or January 1885 she 
application for a pension as the widow of George W. 
McElroy on the ground he had been kicked by a horse and 
died from the injuries, that at the time of making such 
statement she was not aware what was contained in her 
said application that the application was written out 
by another person and not in her presence and only read 
over to her so that she only had a faint idea that it 
contained such a statement and she was not aware that 
such a statement would affect her rights to a pension 
under the law, that at the time and ever since that time 
she well knew that her husband George W. McElroy did not 
die from the effects of injuries received from the kick 
of a horse; but she does know that he died from disease 
of kidneys and bowels and on the ground that he died 
from those diseases and those alone she claims her right 
to a widows pension. This document was witnesses by J. 
H. Kager and Thomas Callahan.

11-8-1901 Fill in the blank form for Declaration of a Widow for
Restoration of Pension. Testimony of Zilpha A. Bush
a resident of "Sycamore Township" in "Montgomery" 
County, Kansas. She states "That she never received
a pension as the widow of George W. McElroy but made
application for pension and was entitled to a pension
as his widow". She further states "That a pension was
not received because her marriage to Henry Bush". Her
PO address was given as LaFountain in the County of 
Wilson, Kansas. She signed with her x mark. This
document was executed in Montgomery County, Kansas and
E. P. Allen and G. E. Gilmore, both residents of 
Independence were witnesses.

1-31-1902 Fill in the blank form Widow's Pension. Date was the 
final signature on the rejection based on "the grounds
of no title under the act of March 3, 1901 for reason 
that the claimants name was never placed on the 
pension roll by reason of the soldier's death as a 
result of his military service required by the 
provisions of said act". Form states she married 
Henry Bush on October 17, 1885.

Another fill in the blank form Original Pension Of 
Minor Children: Rosa A. Montana D.. The PO was given 
as Castello, Montgomery County, Kansas. Rejected "on
the ground of no title for the reason that the 
soldier's death from result of a kick by a horse 
November 25, 1884 was not in any manner due to his 
military service.

4-7-1910 Typed letter from Commissioner to Hon. P. P. Campbell
House of Representatives. Gave history of all claims
and why rejected except for the minor children claim of
Rosa and Montana.

Hand written version of the above letter.

4-26-1913 Typed letter from Wm H. Thompson, Senator to Hon. L. 
Stillwell, Deputy Commissioner, Bureau of Pensions. 
Hon. Thompson asks to be informed of history 
surrounding Zilpha's claim. Letter states Mrs Bush 
lives a Sycamore, Kansas.

4-28-1913 Typed response letter from Deputy Commissioner L. 
Stillwell to Hon. Wm. H. Thompson, U.S. Senate. The
letter details the results of all claims previously 
filed and rejected or accepted. "There is now nothing 
pending in the claim, and this ladydoes not appear to 
have pensionable title under any existing law".

5-2-1913 Letter to Commissioner of Pensions from the Adjutant 
General's Office at the War Department. Letter states
the following "I have the honor to inform you that upon 
investigation it has been ascertained that the charges 
of desertion of November 23 and 24, 1864, recorded 
against this soldier by reason of failure to return to 
the hospital from which furloughed October 29, 1864 are 
erroneous, it appearing that he returned directly to his 
company, and was mustered out and honorably discharged 
with it January 12, 1865.

5-16-1913 Letter from Wm H. Thompson to Deputy Pension Commissioner
Honorable L. Stillwell. "My dear sir: Mr. George W. 
McElroy was a member of Company B, 13th Kentucky Infantry, 
and served in the Civil War. He has applied for relief by 
special act of Congress, and I desire to be informed as to 
his pensionable status, and the state of his military 
record, assuming that he has filed claim at some time in 
your Bureau".

5-17-1913 Letter from Deputy Commissioner to Hon. Wm. H. Thompson.
The letter acknowledges previous correspondence and 
states "In your letter you say: 'He has applied for 
relief by Special Act of Congress.' I do not understand 
that statement in view of the facts in this case." (The 
Deputy Commissioner then retypes a copy of previous 
response). "It appears from a statement in that letter, 
and that fact is apparent in the papers in this case, 
that this soldier died November 25, 1884. Such being 
the case I am unable to understand how he can now be 
applying for relief by a special act of Congress".

11-11-1913 Hand written letter, dictated by Zilpha, to the 
Commissioner of Pensions. Letter was originated from 
Neodesha, Kansas. "Sirs: I will try and drop you a few
lines. I saw in the National Tribune that you was 
passing a bill for the private war widows. I was 
married two years before the war. I was the wife of a 
privat soldier during the war. He went in to the war 
well and hearty and lost one of his arms he never seen a 
well day from that day till he died. It was impossibale 
for me to prove his death for I never could. I lived 
with him and took care of him untill death. He left me 
with five little children to take care of. My name was 
never on the Pension roll. I am so glad that you have 
provided such a way for me to get a pension. I have got 
to thank you for being so wise and noble men. I thank 
God for sending such noble men into the world. I hope 
how well you may do. Yours truly. Mrs. Z. A. Bush, 
Neodesha, Kansas.

12-2-1913 Hand written letter, dictated by Zilpha, to the 
Commissioner of Pensions. "Dear Sir: I received your 
letter was glad to hear from you. ... I could not prove 
his death he had been sick two to three dayes and one 
evening three or four day befor he died I found him 
between the wood yard and the house allmost dead I took 
it to be heart trouble. I don't know whether it was or 
not and he had no axion on his kidneys four or five 
dayes befor he died. He was speachless from the time I 
found him untill a few minutes before he died and the 
Doctors just as soon as they seen he could speak they 
ask him what hurt him and he said the horse hurt him, 
but they could not find a bruse on him eny place they 
were fifty or more people in the house when he said it 
and that is the reasion I can not prove his death. I 
was remarried a year after that. I did not marry a 
soldier this time and he died seven months after we 
were married. I am gettin old and not able to work and 
I have work hard all my life. I do hope to the Lord 
that you will give me some kind of a pension. My 
husband drawed twenty dollars a month. Mrs. Zilpha A. 
Bush, Neodesha, Kansas. Mr. Z. A. Bush can not see how 
to write and I have written this for her. Mrs. John 

2-7-1914 Typed letter from Commissioner to Zilpha. "In reply to 
your letters dated November 11th and December 2, 1913, 
you are advised that this Bureau allows pensions only as 
authorized by Acts of Congress ... Your above entitled 
claim for pension stands rejected of which you have been 

5-12-1914 Hand written letter, dictated by Zilpha, to the 
Commissioner of Pensions. "Dear Sir, I am the wife of 
Geo. W. McElroy. Was married before the war. He 
belonged to Co. B. 13th KY Volunteers. My husband drew 
$24.00 per month for loss of an arm as long as he lived. 
I remarried after Mr. McElroy Death and my second husband 
only lived 8 months after our marriage. I am getting 
very feeble and am not able to work any more. And would 
be very grateful if you would allow me a pension during 
my last days. Resp. yours, Mrs. Zilpha A. McElroy Bush".

7-20-1914 Hand written letter from Montana Anderson, Neodesha, 
Kansas to Commissioner of Pensions. "Dear Sir: Has 
there any pensions law past this year that will entitle
the former widow of Geo. W. McElroy of Co. B. 13th Ky 
Vol. Infty. Pleas write and let me know at once as she 
is getting old and is not able to work eny more. Pleas 
find stamp inclose for Reply, Your respectfully, Mont. 

8-21-1914 A typed letter from Acting Commissioner E. C. Tieman to 
Mr. (confusion about whether Mont. was Mr. or Mrs.) Mont
Anderson. "Sir: In response to your letter of July 20, 
1914 in which you ask whether there has been any law 
passed this year that will entitle the former widow of 
George W. McElroy who served in Company B 13th Kentucky 
Infantry to pension, you are advised that as you fail to 
state her name, the person in whose interest you write is 
uncertain. You are, however, advised that there has been 
no new legislation this year that would benefit former 
widows of soldiers. It is not necessary to furnish 
postage for replies from thsi Bureau. Your postage stamp 
is herewith returned".

6-24-1915 A hand written letter, dictated by Zilpha, and written by 
Mrs. J. Q. Anderson to Commissioner of Pensions. PO 
Neodesha, Kansas. "Dear Sir: I thought I would write you 
a few lines this morning in regards to the Widows pension. 
I heard that the widows pension law had passed allowing 
all war widows a pension. My husban and I were married 
two years before the civil war. My husban and I had never 
been married before nor there was no divorceed. We lived 
together for 25 years and had six children and when he died 
he left me with five little children. He has been dead 31 
years. I seen in the papers wher they did not half to 
prove the husban death. He drawed a pension of $24.00 a 
month. I raised the little children and cared for them 
tille they was married. Now I am getting very old and 
helpless and can not work no more. I am 76 years old. I 
had a small home but I had to sell it to get along with. 
You see I realy need a pension or I would not write to you 
about it. I would be thankful to get a small pension. My 
husban was in the eivil war. George W. McElroy ... he 
lost his Left hand in the war. Several years before he 
died he lost his health so that he could not work. Pleas 
send me some blanks maby I can fill them out satfactory or 
give me advice how to proceed. Do this and I will be ever 
so thankfully Respectfully yours, Mrs. Z. A. Bush".

7-20-1915 A typed written letter from the Commissioner of Pensions
to Zilpha A. Bush, c/o J. Q. Anderson, Neodesha, Kansas.
"Madam: In response to your letter of the 24th ultimo, 
you are advised that there has been no new legislation 
that benefits you in any way. As the above-named 
soldier's death, in 1884, from kick from a horse, was in 
no manner due to his army service, and you remarried in 
1885, there is no existing law under which this Bureau 
can grant you a pension or relief in any way even though 
you are infirm and needy. Your above-entitled claim for 
pension stands rejected, of which you have repeatedly 
been advised. Very respectfully, G. M. Saltzbarger, 

8-7-1915 Hand written letter dictated by Zilpha to Mrs. J. Q.
Anderson (Montana McElroy). Written from Neodesha, 
Kansas. "Mr. Woodrow Wilson, Washington D. C., Dear 
Sir: I thought I would write you a few lines this 
morning as a friend. You know a friend in need is a 
friend indead. I want to ask you a favor that you will 
make a special bill for me in Congress I will be 77 
years old next March and I am not able to work and no 
means to get along with only as I stay hear and their 
with one of my children. I was the wife of said 
soldier Geo. W. McElroy befor the war and up untill his 
death at his death he left me 5 little children to take 
care of I raised the children and took care of them up 
till they marryed. I was marryed the second time and 
he did not live but a few months. I want you to make a 
special Bill to draw back from the time he died so that 
I will have enough money to pay for the passage of the 
bill in congress and so I can pay you for your trouble. 
Pleas will you do this favor for me I tryed to get my 
pension under the Republican President but I couldnt 
for I was to much of Democrat there was nothing that 
would knock me out under the old law but I could not 
prove his death. Mr. Wilson pleas fix it to the very 
best advantage. I thought I would send this letter to 
you that it may help you out some I would write you a 
few line more but I thought this would help just as 
well. I would like for you to make a quick bill out of 
it and have it pas in the next congress. Very
Respectfully Mrs. Z. A. Bush. Neodesha, Kansas care of 
Mrs J. Q. Anderson".

9-7-1915 Typed letter addressed to Zilpha Bush c/o Mrs. J. Q. 
Adams (mistake) from G. M. Salzbarger, Commissioner.
"In reply to your letter of the 7th ultimo, addressed 
to the President and referred to this Bureau, you are 
advised that correspondence with a view to obtaining a 
pension by special act should be addressed to the 
representative in Congress from your district or to one 
of the United States senators from your state".

3-4-1916 Hand written letter, dictated by Zilpha, to Hon. P. P.
Campbell. "Dear Sir, I am in receipt of your letter 
Feb 28 and was glad to hear from you and to know that 
you are trying so hard to get my papers thrugh. In 
respond to your letter about my pension George W. 
McElroy is my soldier husband claim no326884 Co B rgt 
KY Inf. he was my lawful husband on who service pension 
is claimed. yours truly, Mrs. Z. A. Bush, Neodesha, 

3-8-1916 Form Committee on Pensions United States Senate. Asks
for papers to be transmitted to the committee for their
use. Zilpha's address given as Neodesha, Kansas.

3-17-1916 Typed Letter from G. M. Salzgaber to the Hon. P. P. 
Campbell, House of Representatives. "I have the honor 
to advise you that said claim was rejected February 4, 
1889 on the ground that the soldier's death was not 
chargeable to his military service. Her claim under the 
Act of June 27, 1890 was rejected May 13, 1892 on the 
ground that claimant remarried prior to the passage of 
said Act. Her claim under the Act of March 3, 1901 was 
rejected February 8, 1902 on the ground that claimant's 
name was never placed on the pension roll by reason of 
the soldier's death as a result of his military service, 
as required by the provisions of the Act of March 3, 
1901. This bureau can afford Mrs. Bush no relief under 
existing law".

9-25-1916 Hand written Letter, dictated by Zilpha, to Bureau of
Pensions. "Dear Sirs: I am glad that I have the 
pleasure of writing you a few lines about my pension. I 
saw in the paper that the pension billed had passed. I
would like for you to give me the instruction about it. 
I can't fill out no application till I get a blank to
fill out. I am 77 years of age. I am not able to work 
and am all most blind. I would like to get the increase. 
I was pension under the Private pension bill for Mrs. 
Zilpha Ann Bush that passed Sept ? 1916, the widow of 
Georg W. McElroy. Hoping to hear from you soon, Your 
Truly, Mrs Zilpha A. Bush, Neodesha, Kansas".

9-29-1916 This document was a certified copy of the Senate 
legislation that added Zilpha A. Bush to the pension 
roles at $12 per month.

10-14-1916 Pension certificate No. 815213 granting $20 per month
commencing 9-8-1916. The certiciate was later stamped
granting $50 per month from August 4, 1928.

1-19-1917 Typed letter from Honorable Charles Curtis, United 
States Senates from G. M. Satzgaber Commissioner. This
letter informed the senator that Zilpha had been placed
on the pension roles.

10-7-1926 Hand written letter, dictated by Zilpha, and written by
Mrs. J. Q. Anderson. PO Address, Colton, South Dakota.
"In sending out Blank for Widows Increase you sent me 
one and I had it filled out and sent it back to you and 
I have not heard anything about it since why did I not 
get the increase as I was married to my solder husband 
George W. McElroy three years before the war in 1858 am 
I not intitle to it. I hope that I am for I need it 
afell bad. I am 87 years old and am not able to work 
... I request consideration of my case with a view to 
the allowance of the $50 rate provided by the Act of 
July 3, 1926 ...".

?-?-1926 Fill in the blank form Widow's Pension. Stamped with 
approval of increase to $50 per month.

6-10-1938 Change of Address form for Zilpha. Change from South
Dakota to Ge. Del. Sioux Falls, South Dakota

12-31-1938 Letter from General Accounting Office concerning $50
check to Zilpha A. Bush - deceased being signed over 
to Mrs. John Anderson.

Copy of Envelope addressed to Treasury Department from
Mrs. John Anderson. Inside was a letter from Dr. Emil 
G. Erickson, M.D. cerifying the death of Zilpha on 
12-31-1938 at 7:50 A.M..

1-16-1939 Hand written letter by Montana Anderson to Mr. G. E. 
Allen, Chief Disbursing Officer, Division of 
Disbursement, Treasury Department. "Received your 
letter ... regarding death of my mother Zilpha A. Bush 
as I have been caring for her thru her last illness and 
that quite some expense was incurred I would appreciate 
it very much if you could allow me to receive the 
equivalent of the amount of her last pension check 
$50.00 which was returned from local post office Sioux 
Falls, S. Dak under date 12-31-38. date of death Dec 
31, 38 pension certificate no 815213 name Zilpha A. 

1-18-1939 Veterans Administration Finance Form 985 Memorandum For
File - Death Of Beneficiary suspending all payments.

1-23-1939 Typed letter from G. F. Allen to Director of Finance at 
Veterans Administration notifying him that his office 
"requested Mrs. Anderson to return all checks drawn on 
the Treasurer of the United States issued in favor of 
Mrs. Bush not negotiated before her death".

2-6-1939 Typed letter from Director of Finance, H. V. Stirling,
Instructing Mrs. Anderson that the proceeds of the 
$50.00 check are an asset of the estate. It further 
requests copies of the funeral bill, etc. Form 1055
was enclosed.

7-24-1939 Typed letter from Director of Finance to Mrs. John
Anderson, 737 South First Avenue, Sioux Falls, South 
Dakota. Letter concerns last check to Zilpha - 
returned because of death. Letter asks for Form 1055
to be executed for funds to be transferred to Mrs.

7-31-1939 Fill in the blank form executed in Sioux Falls, South
Dakota Application For Payment Of Amounts Due 
Deceased Or Incompetent Civilian Employees, Officers,
And Enlisted Men In The Military Service And Public 
Creditors Of The United States. States Mrs John 
Anderson paid funeral expenses of $362.74 and 
$121.44. Witnessed by Forrest E. Bradfield and Irven

8-12-1939 Letter from Director of Finance to Coon & Coon 
Attorneys requesting a true certificate of death.

8-19-1939 Zilpha's Death Certificate. Cause of death Chronic 
Myocarditis and Senility. Physician was Dr. Emil G. 
Erickson of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Date of death 
December 31, 1938. Date of burial January 3, 1939. 
Certicate filed January 9, 1939.

8-22-1939 Cover letter for package containing Zilpha's death 

9-2-1939 Typed letter from Director of Finance to Coon & Coon 
attorneys. Asks for itemized list of funeral expenses
and last illness since those are part of the estate.

9-14/18-1939 Waiver signed by Sarah A. Hurst (witnesses La Vera
Wood and Mrs. Wm Fawcett) and Maggie Simcox 
(witnesses O. Simcox and P. D. Simcox) waiving rights 
to $50.

9-29-1939 Letter from Director of Finance at Pension Office to
Coon & Coon lawyers for the estate of Zilpha A. Bush.
reference letter from Mrs. Sarah Hurst and Mrs. 
Maggie Simcox waving claims in favor of Mrs. John 
Anderson. Letter reqests detailed itemized 
statements of last illness and funeral expenses.

10-3-1939 Package from Coon & Coon Attorneys containing $2 
receipt for Dr. Erickson's services and statement as 
to the $1 Mrs. John Anderson spent on Ziplha Bush's
Prescription. Package includes a signed affadavit
from Mrs. John Anderson.

11-3-1939 Letter from Director of Finance concerning estate of
Zilpha A. Bush to Mrs John Anderson, 737 South First
Avenue, Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Letter from Director of Finance concerning estate of
Zilpha A. Bush addressed to Mrs Sarah H. Hurst, 812
Wisconsin Street, Neodesha, Kansas.

Letter from Director of Finance concerning estate of
Zilpha A. Bush to Mrs Maggie Simcox, Route 3, Sioux 
Falls, South Dakota.

Form for Notice of Disposition to be Made By Check.
This form mentions Miller Funeral Home, William 
Fawcett Funeral Home, Dr. Emil G. Erickson.