Civil War Records of William S. Handley


Co. Regiment / Ship From To Residence/ Credit Occupation Notes
E (Davis Guards) 6th MVI
(3 months)
enl. April 16, 1861; must. April 22, 1861 must. out Aug. 2, 1861 Acton   age 22
E 26th MVI enl. Sept. 4, 1861; must. Oct. 23, 1861; prom. Corpl. Nov. 17, 1862; re-enlist. Jan. 1, 1864 must. out August 26, 1865, as Private. Acton farmer age 23
MASSCW, 1:382, 3:90

Service Record (select pages from the National Archives): x
Service Ledger (Town of Acton): pages  28-29, 54-55 (PDF)


Co. Regiment Date Filed Type App. No. Cert. No. State Beneficiary/Remarks
E 6th MVI
26th MVI
April 5, 1878 Invalid 252 120 899 742    
March 10, 1894 Widow 591 363 408 5001 Mass. Sarah E. Handley

Pension File (select pages from the National Archives):  33 pages  (PDF*)

Grand Army of the Republic

Recorded as member no. 8 in the membership roster of Isaac Davis Post No. 138 G.A.R., Acton, Massachusetts (Acton Memorial Library archives, 92.2.1). 

G.A.R. Personal War Sketch


Date February 20, 1894
Place Acton, Mass.
Age 54
Cause pneumonia (source: Acton death record)
Obituary Concord Enterprise, February 22, 1894
Burial Woodlawn Cemetery, Acton, Mass.
Survived by  

Additional Information

Son of Abraham B. Handley (d. 1852) and Susan (Winn) Handley. Brother of Abram Handley, Frank Handley, and George Handley.

1850 census: Acton, Middlesex, Massachusetts, Household 13, Family 14:
Abraham B. Handley (transcribed "Hanolly"), age 53, Farmer
Susan E., age 45
George, 21, Farmer
Ellen A., 17
William S., 13
Frank, 10
Abraham, 7
("1850 United States Federal Census,"

Wm. Handley, age 21, a farmer, is recorded as an inhabitant of Acton in the 1860 federal census, in household (dwelling no. 41) of Eben Davis ("1860 United States Federal Census,"

William Stearns Handley is recorded in the 1865 Massachusetts State Census for Acton, age 25, "Soldier", in residence (household no. 105) with Susan Elizabeth Handley, age 62, and Abram Handley, age 21 (Lainhart, 1855 and 1865 Massachusetts State Censuses for Acton: 52).

William S. Handley, age 29, a mechanic, married Sarah Elizabeth Richardson, age 26, in Acton, November 6, 1870 (Acton marriage record in pension file).

William S. Handley is recorded in the 1890 special veterans census as a resident of Acton  ("1890 Veterans Schedules,"

The name William S. Handley is recorded on the Acton Memorial Library Soldiers' Tablet, "The Men of Acton Who Fought For The Union."


See also:

Hosmer, The Town of Acton in the Civil War: 37.


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