Saturday, February 5, 2011

Descendants Search for Ancestor David Carll

Apparently actress Vanessa Williams is not the only descendant of Civil War soldier David Carll who has been searching for information on him. The article “African American Civil War Museum Honors OB Civil War Vet David Carll” (Oyster Bay Enterprise Pilot, August 20, 2010, written by Dagmar Fors Karppi) indicates other descendants have been researching his life. On August 7, 2010, a presentation was made by Frank Carl (great-great grandson) of New York, NY and Gilbert McDonald (great-great-great grandson) of Odenton, MD., at the African American Civil War Museum in Washington, D.C. about their ancestor David Carll. This article ironically does not mention Vanessa Williams’ quest to find information on her ancestor. Neither were there any other references to other descendants researching David Carll mentioned in Vanessa Williams’ Who Do You Think You Are episode last night.

The article further indicates that while doing research at the National Archives, great-great-great grandson, Gilford McDonald, viewed his ancestor’s pension record and discovered the tin-type” photograph of his ancestor. The article does not indicate a date when this discovery occurred. This article is a must read and it gives some details about David Carll’s 12-year struggle in collecting his rightful pension and the reason the photo was sent as part of the pension file.


  1. Thank you so much for sharing this. It's nice to read the "rest of the story." Great find!

  2. Wonderful to have more of the details behind this story - thank you for posting this!

  3. I think this is the most valuable information in my entire life and I will keep it with me forever and ever!

    I also love information like this as a matter of fact, I am going to look up old information about my past history.


  4. For all who are interested, a book titled Footsteps of a Forgotten Soldiers The Life and Times of David Carll is now available. It tells the story of David Carll from before, during and after the Civil War. It is available on @ or