The South Carolina General Assembly first authorized pensions to Confederate
veterans on 23 December 1887...veterans who were citizens of the state, had
an income of less than $250 a year, and had a disability that left them
unable to earn a living were eligible. It also allowed widows of soldiers
or sailors who had died in service and earned less than $250 per year to
apply. A state board approved applications by verification by county
officials and doctors. Pensioners received five dollars a month the first
A bit of other trivia: in 1895, eligibility was expanded to include
veterans and widows over 60 who had incomes of less than $100 per year. In
1900, the income requirement was changed to $150 per year for disabled
veterans and $100 for veterans over age 60. In 1919, eligibility was
changed to include all veterans, and widows over the age of sixty who had
married veterans before 1890.
In 1923, pensions were approved for African Americans who had served at
least six months as cooks, servants, or attendants. In 1924, apparently
because there were too many applications, the act was amended to eliminate
laborers, teamsters, and non-South Carolinians.
The legislature dropped the age of eligibility for widows to 55 in 1920, to
50 in 1921, and to 45 in 1930. The state paid Confederate widow pensions
until the last widow died in 1990.