World War II United States Military Records, 1941 to 1945
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In May 2011, the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) completed construction of its new facility in St. Louis, Mo.
Over 16.5 million men and women served in the armed forces during World War II, of whom 291,557 died in battle, 113,842 died from other causes, and 670,846 were wounded.
National WWII Memorial
The introduction to the memorial on the website says, "The memory of America's World War II generation is preserved within the physical memorial and through the World War II Registry of Remembrances, an individual listing of Americans who contributed to the war effort. Any U.S. citizen who helped win the war, whether a veteran or someone on the home front, is eligible for the Registry." The memorial was dedicated 29 May 2004. Visit their website National WWII Memorial for more information.
The WWII Registry combines four databases of the names of Americans who are:
- Buried in American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) overseas military cemeteries.
- Memorialized on ABMC Tablets of the Missing.
- Listed on official War and Navy Department Killed in Service rosters now held by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).
- Honored by public enrollment in the Registry of Remembrances.
WWII American Cemetery, Madingley, Cambridgeshire: 3 miles west of Cambridge and donated by the University of Cambridge. This is the only American WWII burial ground in England. There are 3,800 white crosses and an additional wall with 5,000 names to pay tribute to the American servicemen and women who died in this war. You can read more about this on the website.
State World War II Records
- United States Army Military History Institute
- World War II Links and Resources
- Veteran's History Project
- Dad's War: Finding and Telling Your Father's World War II Story
Use the information at this site to make sure a record of your own military service is preserved.
- Stories of the Survivors of the ship USS Henry Mallory
This ship was part of the one of the largest convoy battles of WWII.
- Maps of World War II arranges WWII maps by place and date.
- World War II Maps Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection.
- World War II Toolbox contains a list of repositories, online books, and records resources for all branches of the military.
- Were You Or Your Relatives Exposed To Mustard Gas? Search Database NPR has compiled the first public database of American veterans who were secretly exposed to mustard gas in military experiments conducted during World War II.
- Air Ferry Squadrons. Newly-built aircraft, replacement parts, supplies, and support personnel were delivered to the Atlantic and Pacific Theaters and around the United States by thousands of male and female civilian and military personnel between 1941 and 1945.
- World War II (and other conflicts) records of aviation crashes, etc.
National Veterans Gravesite Administration
- National Cemetery Administration. Department of Veterans Affairs Cemetery Listing.
- Nationwide Gravesite Locator. Search for burial locations of veterans and their family members in VA National Cemeteries, state veterans cemeteries, various other military and Department of Interior cemeteries, and for veterans buried in private cemeteries when the grave is marked with a government grave marker.
Things you can do
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Sources for Further Reading
- Ancell, R. Manning, with Christine Miller. The Biographical Dictionary of World War II Generals and Flag Officers: The U.S. Armed Forces. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1996. (FHL book 973 D36anc.)
- DeWhitt, Benjamin L. “World War II Ship’s Logs.” Prologue: Quarterly of the National Archives 24 (Winter 1992): 400–4. (FHL book 973 B2p.)
- Gray, Paul D. “The Human Record of Conflict: Individual Military Service and Medical Records.” Prologue: Quarterly of the National Archives 23 (Fall 1991): 307–13. (FHL book 973 B2p.)
- National Archives. World War II Prisoners of War Data File, 12/7/1941 - 11/19/1946. Records of World War II Prisoners of War, created 1942 - 1947, documenting the period 12/7/1941 - 11/19/1946.
- Heaps, Jennifer Davis. “World War II Prisoner-of-War Records." Prologue: Quarterly of the National Archives 23. (Fall 1991): 323–8. (FHL book 973 B2p.)
- Holik, Jennifer. "Stories from the Battlefield: A Beginning Guide to World War II Research." Woodridge, IL: Generations, 2014.
- Mix, Ann Bennett. Touchstones: A Guide to Records, Rights, and Resources for Families of American World War II Casualties.Bountiful, Utah: American Genealogical Lending Library, 1996. (FHL book 973 M27t.)
- Pearl Harbor Survivors Association. Pearl Harbor Survivors: 50th Anniversary. Paducah, Ky.: Turner Publishing, 1992. (FHL book 996.93 M2p.) This book contains biographical sketches of veterans and a list of association members.
- RootsWeb Review, 21 February 2007, Vol. 10, No. 8. By Doris Demet, Article entitled "Locating Information about Your Veteran"