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25 free military websites for family historians


In Family Tree's June issue Simon Fowler chooses his favourite free military websites to help you research your military ancestors.

"Almost everybody has fathers and grandfathers (and sometimes mothers and grandmothers too) who fought in the two world wars. Fortunately it’s pretty easy to find out about them with much of the information you will need online. Much of it is available on Ancestry or Findmypast for a fee, but there’s still a great deal that is free. However you are not necessarily going to find details about individual soldiers, sailors or airmen. In the main the sites offer background information rather than lists of names. For that you have to pay. That said there are a number of blogs devoted to individual servicemen, particularly for the First World War, so it may be worth doing a general Google search for your forebear to see what turns up."

In the digital edition of the magazine we've also included this website walkthrough that shows you how to search for British and Commonwealth casualties of both world wars at www.cwgc.org.

To read the full article get the June 2016 issue of Family Tree from Pocketmags.com or subscribe and save. Family Tree June is in the shops until 7 June 2016.

If you're currently researching military ancestors, you will also want to check out our free guide to Army records for family history! This will tell you some of the records available and where to find them, plus there are links to further resources where you can learn more.


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