United Kingdom, World War I Service Records - FamilySearch Historical Records
|Access the Records|
United Kingdom, World War I Service Records, 1914-1920
|This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.|
|Flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland|
|Location of United Kingdom|
|Location of the United Kingdom in Europe|
|Record Type||World War I Service|
|The National Archives|
What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]
This collection will include records from 1914-1920 It contains records from two publications in the National Archives:
- WO 363 (War Office: Soldiers' Documents, First World War "Burnt Documents") surviving records of service for non commissioned officers and other ranks who served in the 1914-1918 war and did not re-enlist prior to the outbreak of war in 1939 and
- WO 364 (War Office: Documents from Pension Claims, First World War) service records of non-commissioned officers and other ranks who were discharged from the Army and claimed disability pensions for war service between 1914 and 1920 and did not re-enlist prior to the outbreak of the Second World War. The records are unlikely to contain information on individuals who did not claim a war pension
Military records are of great genealogical value and may provide information not found in any other source. These records identify individuals who served or were eligible to serve in the military. Military service (other than the militia) was usually a lifetime career. Officers came from the upper classes; soldiers usually came from the poor.
The National Archives at Kew in the London area is the caretaker of most of the military records. It is important to understand the "fonds" or the way records are grouped. There is a Department code (ADM for admiralty, WO for War Office, etc) and a series number.
These records are the service files of soldiers who were discharged from the British army between 1914 and 1920. They are a collection known as the "unburned documents." They represent about 8 percent of the soldiers who served during those years.
The article British Military Records has more information about these records.
Image Visibility[edit | edit source]
Whenever possible FamilySearch makes images and indexes available for all users. However, rights to view these data are limited by contract and subject to change. Because of this there may be limitations on where and how images and indexes are available or who can see them. Please be aware some collections consist only of partial information indexed from the records and do not contain any images. For additional information about image restrictions see Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections.
To Browse This Collection[edit | edit source]
|You can browse through images in this collection using the waypoints on the Collection Browse Page for United Kingdom, World War I Service Records, 1914-1920.|
What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]
The following information may be found in these records:
- Name of Soldier
- Place of birth
- Marital Status
- Date of marriage (If married)
- Wife’s maiden name
- Military rank
- Date of enlistment
- Place of enlistment
How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]
Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:
- The name of the soldier
- Approximate date of service
Search the Index[edit | edit source]Search by name on the Collection Details Page.
- Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
- Click Search to show possible matches
View the Images[edit | edit source]View images in this collection by visiting the Collection Browse Page:
- Select Name Range - First Letter
- Select Name Range - First Two Letters
- Select Name Range - Surname to view the images
|More images are available in the FamilySearch Catalog at United Kingdom, World War I Service Records, 1914-1920. Click on camera icon to see images.|
How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]
Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.
What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]
I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]
| custodian = |
- Add any new information to your records
- Use the age to calculate the approximate birth year
- Use the place of birth and calculated birth year to search for a birth record
- Use the spouse's name to search for a marriage record
- Use the soldier's age and location of the military unit to find his family in census, church, and land records
- Continue to search the index and records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have served in the same unit or a nearby unit
I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]
- Titles may be clues to property ownership, occupations, rank, or status within the community
- Check for variant spellings of the names
- Look for an index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume. In addition local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records
- Search the records of nearby military units
Research Helps[edit | edit source]
- Guided Research: England Guided Research, Ireland Guided Research, Scotland Guided Research, Wales Guided Research
- Record Finder: England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales
- Research Tips and Strategies: England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales
Known Issues[edit | edit source]
Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]
Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.