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Enlistment of Louis Hansen

Enlistment of Louis Hansen

Posted: 1339509718000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1339509771000
Surnames: Hansen
Hi, I am a little confused about the enlistment of my grandfather, Louis Hansen (aka Laust Fredrick Hansen). These are the facts that I have found documents for:

He immigrated to the US on August 20 of 1901.
His enlistment is June 30, 1901.
He was discharged April 30, 1903.
His headstone lists that he was in the Spanish American War as part of the 3rd Illinois Infantry, Company G.

I also know that the Spanish American War lasted from April-August 1898.

Here are the questions:

Why would he be credited with serving the Spanish American War if he didn't enlist until 2 years after it was done?

Was it common/possible that foriegn soldiers enlisted before immigrating?


Re: Enlistment of Louis Hansen

Posted: 1339684479000
Classification: Query
To answer your first question, technically Spanish American War service was considered any time between 21 Apr. 1898 and 4 July 1902. If he was stationed in the Moro Province of the Phillipines, the date is extended to 1903. So he does fall within the dates to be considered a Span-Am War veteran.
The 3rd Ilinois was a militia regiment, what to day would be the National Guard. He might have had a sponsor or family member already here enlist him in the unit. That would make him more likely to pass the immigration inspectors if he had no money upon arrival, but he had papers showing he had a job and sponsor waiting for him. Or the dates could be slightly off.

Re: Enlistment of Louis Hansen

Posted: 1339697383000
Classification: Query
Thanks! That is very helpful!

Re: Enlistment of Louis Hansen

Posted: 1344962613000
Classification: Query
It is also possible that your ancestor named Louis Hansen has been confused with some other. The Louis Hansen who served in the G 3 IL Infantry in the Spanish-American War is a pensioner. You can see his pension card on the Index to Civil War Pension Files at ancestry or familysearch. Spanish-American War pensioners were included on that index, even though it doesn't come right out and say so. SA War pensioners have a tiny handwritten "s" on the pension card after the word "invalid".

The soldier who served in the G 3 IL Inf applied for pension in March of 1922 while living in the state of Michigan. There are about 5 "Louis Hansen" on the microfilm of pensioners, and maybe more who served and were not pensioned. You might want to check all of them and make sure which one is yours before ordering a pension file. I didn't look at all the cards to see who was CW and who was SA. The pension file at NARA would certainly give you a positive ID on the soldier one way or the other.

Best wishes.
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