The Civil War Bluejackets Project

Damian Shiels, PhD will discuss the major new research project involving historians, computer scientists and volunteer Citizen Scientists aimed at telling the stories of ordinary United Sailors in the American Civil War. The Civil War Bluejackets Project launched in September 2022 with a call for citizen volunteers to help transcribe tens of thousands of Civil War “Muster Rolls”, documents that were carried on board U.S. ships and which capture the personal details of the c.118,000 men who fought on water for the Union between 1861 and 1865. Included among these men were thousands of Irish Americans- an estimated 20% of the Union Navy were Irish born. In addition to outlining the Irish contribution to the American Civil War U.S. Navy, the talk will discuss the role of volunteers, and how they are helping to shed new light on this intriguing group of men. Learn more on the Civil War Bluejackets Project website.