Search billions of records on Ancestry.com
   

Learning more about your World War I soldier

Soldiers of the Great War

     After the Great War, a program was undertaken to document the names (and in many cases, the photographs) of soldiers who died in the “Great War” (World War I). The resulting publication was a three-volume work titled Soldiers of the Great War, by W.M. Haulsee, F.G. Howe, and A.C. Doyle (1920).
     The part of Volume I that covers Louisiana has been placed on the Web here:
http://freepages.military.rootsweb.com/~worldwarone/WWI/Louisiana/index.html
and an annotated version at:
http://freepages.military.rootsweb.com/~worldwarone/WWI/Louisiana/notes.html
     If your WWI soldier from Louisiana died in the war, his (or her) name might be here. For those who are buried overseas, he may be found here:
http://www.abmc.gov/search/wwi.php
     The home page for the American Battle Monuments Commission is:
http://www.abmc.gov/
     The Soldiers of the Great War volumes are available in large libraries, or can be ordered on microfiche from any Family History Center. See: http://goo.gl/1F7EM
Note: These volumes do not list all of those who were killed in action or died in service. Of the 31 soldiers listed on the Ninth Ward Victory Arch who died in action or died in service, 10 are included in Soldiers of the Great War.
 

Records in the National Archives
World War I Service Records

     An overview of World War I records is available at:
http://www.archives.gov/research/alic/reference/military/ww1.html
and
http://www.archives.gov/publications/prologue/1998/fall/military-service-in-world-war-one.html

     Despite a disastrous fire at the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) in St. Louis in 1973 (see: http://www.archives.gov/st-louis/military-personnel/fire-1973.html), it is still possible to obtain some records related to military service in World War I.
     To request a search of personnel records in the National Personnel Records Center, you will need a Standard Form 180, “Request Pertaining to Military Records.” Copies of the form are available from the center at 8600 Page Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63132, or from the Web site:
http://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/standard-form-180.html


Records in the National Archives
Draft Registration Records

     The original WWI draft registration cards (about 24 million cards) are held by the Southeast Region of the National Archives in East Point, Georgia (near Atlanta). An overview of the registration records is available at:
http://www.archives.gov/research/military/ww1/draft-registration/index.html

     There were three draft registrations during World War I:
          • June 5, 1917: for all men ages 21-31;
          • June 5, 1918: for all men who had reached age 21 since June 1917;
          • September 1, 1918: for all men between 18 and 45.
     The draft registration records (and images of the actual cards) for all Louisiana parishes (including Orleans) are available online through Ancestry.com. See: http://content.ancestry.com/iexec/?htx=List&dbid=6482&offerid=0%3a7858%3a0
     Microfilm copies of the Orleans Parish records are available at the Louisiana Division of the New Orleans Public Library and the Louisiana State Archives in Baton Rouge.
     The records are also available on microfilm through any Family History Center. See: http://goo.gl/t5y5h


Corrections and additions to this information are welcome.

Last updated: 16 May 2012

Return to home page