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Assistant Commissioner Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands Records, 1865-1868

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Assistant Commissioner Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands Records




Kentucky Historical Society. Special Collections & Archives. Frankfort, Kentucky 40601-1931

Conditions Governing Access note

Access at KHS only. Use microfilm, transcriptions or images when available.

Preferred Citation Note

[Identification of item], Assistant Commissioner Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands Records, 1865-1868, 94SC01,Library Special Collections and Archives, Kentucky Historical Society, Frankfort.


1 volume


The federal government established the bureau in 1865 as part of the War Department. Major General Oliver O. Howard was the original commissioner of the bureau. The bureau's main purpose was to continue the programs already created in the former Confederate states by the occupying federal army as well as conducting other duties assigned in the Reconstruction era. These duties included operating freedmen's camps; establishing hospitals, schools, and courts; protecting African-Americans from civil violation of their rights; and feeding and caring for both blacks and whites.

Scope and Content

This volume contains records of the United States Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands. The records document the bureau's activities in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Alabama from 1865 to 1868.

The bulk of the book includes monthly reports, general regulations, and guidelines; written requests for the death records of both blacks and whites, especially those mistreated, between October 18, 1865 to October 1, 1866 and July 1, 1867 to July 1, 1868 in Kentucky and Tennessee; an explanation of the rights of blacks in Tennessee; monthly reports of destitute refugees; and an order forbidding officers and agents to operate outside of their jurisdiction without proper authorization.

County: Simpson; Jefferson

User Restrictions

Permission for commercial use must be requested from the Kentucky Historical Society. Special Collections.

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