I take your case. subscription mentionned is www.geneabank.org but mainly focused before 1850. Useful for parish registers (build by volunteer's perusals, english verb to "skin" is hard) For 15€ (20 bucks) 250 useful results, "dirt cheap" if you allow the idiom!
For your period, start should search by www.geneanet.org 1 billion of names from trees and browsers free (my subscription allows search by first name) gives periods, cities etc. After 1800, each city (36000) has an alphabetical index (85% on line) but you must know it before. Regarding an "VIP" (a Colonel was in the 40:50's) other tools such as military archives (DOD in your country)
I have enough to find this Co and his family. I'll tell you more soon (ie 3 days) enjoy week end!