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Memorial Day History and World War II Research Links

Posted by Writing PIs on May 29, 2010

Honor them with words and deeds

Updated May 23, 2012

Memorial Day History

Memorial Day was first enacted to honor Union soldiers after the Civil War, and was expanded after WWI.  Although initially the day was called different names, such as Decoration Day in the South (for the Confederate soliders who’d given their lives), the term “Memorial Day” was first used in 1882, and became commonly used after WWII.  It was declared the official name by Federal law in 1967.

In our business, we’ve researched some WWII histories, so we’ll share some of those links below.

WWII Research Links

Research WW II military records.  You can search, for free, military personnel and service records at the U.S. National Archives. Searches include casualty lists, pictures, and other WW II records. To research WW II records, click here.

Join WW II Forums. This community forum provides free resources for reading and researching WW II, with topics including first-hand accounts by veterans, WW II obituaries and more.

Finding Information on Personal Participation in WWII.  This online document, provided by the National Archives and Records Administration, contains tips for researching military records relevant to those with personal participation in WWII. (If above link doesn’t work, here’s the url: http://www.archives.gov/research/military/ww2/ww2-participation.pdf).

Other Wars: National Archives’ Research Links

Click on link for documents in that category:

Civil War

Vietnam War

Korean War

War of 1812

Military Service Records

Although all military service records were once sent to the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) which is under the jurisdiction of the National Archives and Records Administration, only the Coast Guard now sends their records there. Address The National Personnel Records Center, Military Personnel Records, 9700 Page Avenue, St. Louis, Missouri 63132, fax: 314-801-9195.

The Navy stopped sending veterans’ records to NPRC in 1995.  For Navy personnel discharged after 1994, those records are now sent to NAVPERSCOM in Millington, TN (1-866-827-5672).

The Marines stopped sending records to NPRC  in 1997, and they are now sent to Quantico.

The Army stopped sending records to NPRC in 2002, and they are now sent to the Army Human Resources Command in St. Louis.

The Air Force stopped sending records to NPRC in 2004, and they are now sent to Randolph AFB, TX.

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2 Responses to “Memorial Day History and World War II Research Links”

  1. Antoine said

    Would someone know how to trace germann WWII back to their units?
    Thanks.

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