By 1860, Mary Bryan Reed was living in Ray County, Missouri, so my first step in researching David was to check out the great USGenWeb site for Ray County. I have found boundless information on this site. Under their database of surnames link I found three listings for David Reed. He was mentioned in two of the historical histories of the county: twice in the History of Ray County, MO, 1881, and once in Portrait and Biographical Record of Clay, Ray, Carroll, Chariton, and Linn counties, Missouri. In the History of Ray County, 1881, there is a paragraph under the heading of widows of Soldiers of the War of 1812 that mentions Mary Bryan Reed. It states that David Reed was a Soldier during the War of 1812 and that he enlisted in Berkeley County, Virginia in 1814 and discharged in 1815.
David Reed is the first ancestor I have found from the War of 1812. After finding this information I did a search for records of the War of 1812. Ancestry.com had a database of information, but because he has such a common name, I was not able to narrow any of the finds down to be my ancestor. I was led once again to the National Archives. They have several resources about the war at their Military Resources: War of 1812 link. I headed to their eServices site, which has become my favorite resource. I placed an order for David Reed's Federal Military Pension Application - Pre-Civil War Complete File (NATF 85A). The fee for the search and documents is $50, which is a bit steep, but it will not be charged if they can not find any documents on David Reed.
|A view of the bombardment of Fort McHenry, near Baltimore, by the British fleet, |
Repository: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.