Essay on Veterans And Benefits Of The Civil War

806 Words Dec 9th, 2015 4 Pages
Veterans and Benefits
From the end of the Civil War into the 1880s, Congress debated soldiers’ pensions. After the civil war, the Union army veterans, allied with the Republican Party and jolted the government to provide the northern soldiers and their widows with pensions. The North had already spent two million to fight the Civil War, and the veteran’s pensions had cost them eight billion dollars, it was one of the largest welfare commitments the federal government had ever made. However Confederate veterans were excluded, even though some Southern States funded small pensions and built old-age homes for ex-soldiers.
In May of 1917, Congress passed the Selective Service to raise an army. So all men between the ages of twenty one and thirty had to register with the draft board (later it changed to eighteen and forty five). In June of 1917 more than nine and one half million men signed up for the “great lottery.” By the end of the war four point eight million had served in the armed forces. Two million of that number was in France some fled to Canada or Mexico to avoid going to war, many died and some formed a group in 1920 called the American Legion. They would lobby for the veterans benefits. In 1932 veterans came back, there was no work and then the depression. So 15 thousand unemployed veterans and their families marched to Washington as Congress debated a bill authorizing immediate payment of cash “ bonuses” that veterans were scheduled to receive. Walter Waters got…

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