Over the years I’ve written a lot about the wars in which American’s served. I trust that this thumb-nail sketch will give you an idea if your ancestor served when he can’t be found on census records or tax records – or anywhere! I am only including those wars in which Kentuckians were involved. Note that dates vary slightly from record to record and I do not as yet have the entire Kentucky break-down, thus totals are for the entire USA. Information taken from various sources.
War of 1812. (1812-1814) between the United States and Britain. It was caused by the British compromised rights of interests of neutral American shipping on the high seas, involved the seizing and impressments of its sailors and refusal to recognize American naturalization. War was declared June 18, 1812 by Congress. It ended with the signing of the Treaty of Ghent, Belgium, December 24, 1814. American troops involved: 286,730. US deaths: 2,260. US wounded: 4,505.
Mexican War (1846-1848). Between the US and Mexico. Cause: The annexation of Texas by the US Dec 29, 1845; dispute over its southern boundary and the refusal of Mexico to negotiate the sale of California and New Mexico. War declared May 13, 1846. War ended: Treat of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Feb 2, 1848. Total US soldier involved: 78,718. Total US deaths: 1,1733. US Non-Battle deaths: 11,550. Total US wounded: 4,151.
Civil War (1861-1865). Between the US government and the states adhering to it on one side and the 11 states that seceded from the Union – known as the Confederate states. Cause: Slavery along with “states’ rights.” War began with the Confederate bombardment and seizure of Fort Sumpter in Charleston Harbor April 12, 1861. War concluded at Appomattox Courthouse Virginia April 9 1865 with the surrender of Confederates by General Robert E Lee. Total US soldiers – Union: 2,213,363. Confederate: 1,050,000. Deaths – Union: 110,070. Confederate: 74,524. Non-battle deaths (illness, etc). Union: 249,458. Confederate: an estimated 124,000. Wounded – Union: 275,175. Confederate: estimated 137,000.
Spanish-American War (1898). Between the US and Spain. Cause: To liberate Cuba from Spanish rule, the sinking of the Battleship Maine in Havana Harbor on Feb 15, 1898, overt US support of the Cuban revolt. Provoked by US demands for a Spanish withdrawal from Cuba. War declared by Spain Apr 24, 1898. Congress declared war on Spain Apr 25, 1898. Concluded: The Treaty of Paris Dec 10, 1898. Total US soldiers: 306,760. Total US battle deaths: 385. Total US non-battle deaths: 2061. Total US wounded: 1,162.
World War I (1914-1918). Began as a European affair in 1914 but by 1917 included 32 nations and an over-all mobilization of 65 million men. Claimed over 8 million lives; fought primarily in France between Allied and German forces. Declaration date: July 28 1914; US entered Apr 16, 1917. Concluded by armistice signed Nov 11, 1918. Total US soldiers: 4,743,826. Total US battle deaths: 53,513. Total US non-battle deaths: 63,195. Total US wounded: 204,002.
World War II (1939-1945). Began as a local European conflict 1935 but escalated in 1939 and involved almost every nation of the world and fought on or over about 2/3rds of the surface of the globe. Fought between Allied forces on one side and Axis forces of Germany, Italy and Japan on the other primarily. Cause: Escalation caused by Germany’s invasion of Poland; America’s involvement due to the bombing of Pearl Harbor. War declared by Congress against Japan Dec 8 1941 and against Germany Dec 12, 1941. Concluded by the surrender of Japan on Sept 10, 1945. Total US soldiers: Over 16 million. Total US Battle deaths: 292,131. Total US non-battle deaths: 115,185. Total US wounded: 670,846.
Korean War (1950-1953). Between the combined forces from the US, South Korea and the United Nations vs North Korea and the Chinese Communist forces. Cause: North Korean thrust across the neutral 38th parallel. Declared: June 25, 1950. Concluded; Agreement at P’anmunjom July 27, 1953. Total US soldiers: 5,764,143. Communist losses: estimated 2 million dead and wounded. US battle deaths: 33,65. US non-battle deaths: unknown. Total US wounded: 103,284.
Vietnam War (1962-1973/1975). Between the combined forces of the US and South Vietnam and the Communist supported government of North Vietnam. Cause: Provocation by Communist North Vietnamese (Viet Cong) attacks on the government and officials of South Vietnam. Declared: No official declaration but US troops involved in Vietnam as early as 1962. Concluded: Mar 29, 1973 with the withdrawal of American forces; finalized on Apr 30, 1975 with the surrender of the government of South Vietnam to North Vietnam. Total US involvement (at the peak of the engagement): 543,000. Total US battle deaths: 47,369. Total US non-combat deaths: 10,799. Total US wounded: 303,704 with 153,303 hospitalized.
© Copyright 7 June 2007, Sandra K. Gorin