The Museum Historians cannot guarantee the size or composition of a veteran’s military personnel file. Once we receive the file back from the National Archives in St. Louis, a Museum Historian will then determine if we can potentially produce a written narrative on the veteran. During this time, the client will be approached about our findings and other packages. If a file cannot be produced into a personal narrative, our team will look for other records and sources to mail off with the file.
Please note we are unsure of the time frame of when we would receive a veteran’s file due to limited access to public research access and because the National Archives have limited the number of files we can pull at one given time. How the archives pull files and in which time frame is up to them and we have no say-so over that process.
A 1973 fire at the National Personnel Records Center destroyed 16 million to 18 million Official Military Personnel Files, including files for many who served in World War II. There may not be a file—or only a fragment of a file—for your servicemember, therefore there is no guarantee in size or page number of your veteran’s file. If that is the case, WWII Research Services cannot provide any further information beyond the fragment. If you are certain that your servicemember’s file has been destroyed, we recommend not submitting this request.
Due to the National Archives digitization effort, our research services cannot currently access Individual Deceased Personnel Files (issued if the individual was KIA) for service members with last names that fall between M and Z in the alphabet.
The research packages produced by WWII Research Services will be the final product, and families will not have a personal review before a package goes to print.
It is the customer’s responsibility to provide all of the known details about a veteran’s service. Information not disclosed may result in limited or discontinued research. In addition, our research services will determine which supporting materials provided by the family will be included in our other research packages.
WWII Research Services will determine whether a file constitutes a fragment and if a file can be processed into a personal narrative and created into our other packages.
WWII Research Services can only provide research about WWII veterans. We cannot access service files of veterans discharged fewer than 62 years ago.