Sometimes you just have to do something that goes against what you would normally do.
I am what you might call frugal, or as some people put it, tight. I cut and use coupons, shop the sales, do not buy frivolous things that I really don't need. I try to watch my spending when it comes to genealogy even though we all know that this hobby can be quite expensive if you let it. My one big expenditure is my subscription to Ancestry.com which has proven to be worth the money and I attempt justify the cost to myself in all ways imaginable.
Up until now I have only looked at the online forms to purchase Social Security applications and military pension files, telling myself that I will not pay for those resources until all other sources have been squeezed and wrung out. But...like I said, up until now.
After years and years of hunting for the correct Miller family in West Virginia, the genealogical Miller drought came to an end. With one little birth record on the West Virginia archive website, the flood gates opened and I not only found my Millers, but the connected families of my ggg- and gggg-grandmothers who married into the Millers.
Eli Seth McGuire was the father of Elizabeth McGuire, my ggg-grandmother who married William Alexander Miller. I located him in a part of Virginia that is now West Virginia. He, his wife, Mary Knapp, and their son, John all went to Bourbon County, Kansas by the mid-1800's. In the 1885 Kansas census I discovered Eli was a Civil War veteran. I guess my excitement at finding all these people caught up with me and, completely out of character, I sent off for Eli's complete military pension file at the cost of a whopping $75.00!
Do I regret this moment of insanity? Other than a few early twinges, no! I just look forward to getting the file and seeing what I hope to be a treasure trove of information. I'm like a child in October. You know that Halloween ushers in the holidays and Christmas is on its way, but it is still so far away that it seems like it will never arrive. The National Archives and Records Administration say to allow 42 to 102 days for the file to be sent. In the online application, I included most of the information they need to hunt the file so I am hoping that it will not take the entire 102 days, but still, it will be a long wait. Maybe now, I will send off for those Social Security applications that I have been eyeing and I'm sure there are more veterans that filed for a pension. Will someone please come take my wallet before I lose complete control!