For the month of April, we have highlighted some of the 225+ genealogy and research courses offered at The International Institute for Genealogical Studies. There are a variety of themes and topics to choose from. Hopefully, we will feature some courses that you were not aware of and pique your interest to explore further.
M is for MILITARY
Military records are vast and varied. It is advised to create a timeline for the life of your ancestor. Within that timeline, be sure to include the historical events during their lifetime. This will most certainly should include military conflicts, no matter which country they have been residing in. Not everyone served, but you should always seek out the military records in their area. Some may have applied, but been unfit to serve, or excused from service. Some may not have enlisted, but had served in a different capacity, such as a supporting role to the war effort. This would be true for Quakers.
A useful tool, created to help you to determine whether you should look for military records for your ancestor, is a graphic by Fold3 called Birth Years for Veterans, which is based on calculations of the main age range of the soldiers involved. If you have American family members born in these years, it is worth looking for military records. You can create a similar chart for the conflicts involved in your ancestors’ location.
Once you have established that a family member had served, and you have found their service records, take your research a step farther and learn all you can about the conflict and how they may have been involved. Learn about their regiment or militia that was formed, the uniforms they wore, the weapons they used, and their living conditions while in service. Locate major battles on a map and research the details. Were they victorious, or were they captured? Did they suffer an injury or develop a disability? Did they receive a pension? All of these events created records.
Did they relocate after the conflict? Did they receive a bounty or land grant? It may explain why families immigrated when they did, or why they migrated to certain regions. Some families relocated to avoid conflicts or persecution. Their movements are clues to possible military involvement. Their death dates may also be a clue. Check dates of events in that location, or where they are buried, or the inscriptions and symbols on their stones.
Of course, military records will vary greatly, depending on where your research is focused. The International Institute has many courses which include information about military-related research. There are also courses to help you to share their military involvement after you have documented their service. It may not always be a happy story, but it is important to preserve their experiences and tell their story. Below we have listed some of the courses that may help you to seek out military history for your family.
Australian: Military Records
Canadian: Military Records
Discover Your Family History
Eastern European: Other Records…Including Census, Land, Military & Tax
English/Scottish: Occupations – Military and Services
German: Chronological Considerations
Google for the Wise Genealogist
Irish: Military, Naval and Pension Records
Italian: Military & Conscription Records (Not Scheduled)
Life of Our Ancestors
Research: FamilySearch Resources – In Person and Online
Research: Social History
Research: South African Ancestors Including Military Records
Research: The National Archives of England
Research: U.S. 20th Century Records, Including Adoption Records
Research: U.S. African American Ancestors
Research: U.S. Colonial New England Ancestors
Research: U.S. Records Using Ancestry including DNA Strategies
Research: U.S. World War II Ancestors – Part 1
Research: U.S. World War II Ancestors – Part 2
Research: United Empire Loyalist Ancestors
Social Media Tools for the Wise Genealogist
US: Military Records
Writing the Genealogist’s Memoir
Writing Your Family History Book
You can customize your own package of courses. This is especially helpful if you have already completed some of the courses above. Register for the balance of the courses needed to complete your desired genealogy research project.
Exploring Military records can cover many aspects in our genealogy research. For some families, they have endured numerous conflicts with military involvement in every generation. For others, their lives were impacted by the results of the wars within their lifetime, or for their ancestors. Few families have not been influenced in some way by military actions. Find out their stories and document their service.
The International Institute of Genealogical Studies offers quality online education with over 240 courses. Our wide range of courses cover specific countries, enhance methodology research, build skills to maximize your research time, and all count toward the certification you choose.
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