Thursday, April 6, 2017
One Hundred Years
Today marks the 100th anniversary of when we entered the Great War or the War to End All Wars as our ancestors called it. Yes, World War I. Did you have some of your relatives serving during this war? Perhaps they served in Europe? If you did, there's a new database available that Ancestry is announcing today. Below is unofficial information I received about it a couple days ago, but it is being released to the public today. I unfortunately, know of no relatives that served in Europe during this war. I had a few, including my grandparents, but they all served stateside, so I can't find anybody in these records, but maybe you can!
To commemorate the 100th anniversary of the entry of the United States into World War I, Ancestry today launched a database that includes all of the passenger lists for the American troop ships going to and from Europe during WWI, and beyond. The records include name of next of kin, among other details that might not now be easy to find, thanks to the 1974 fire at the NPRC.
U.S., Army Transport Service, Passenger Lists, 1910-1939
What is most exciting about this resource is that it goes a long way towards answering the question, “So my ancestor had a draft card … but did he actually serve?” Obviously, if the ancestor was a soldier on the troop ship, he did indeed serve. Some soldiers may have served only in a stateside role during the war, and for them, consulting other sources, such as the records of the Adjutant General for the state in which the man in question resided. Often, these records are now at state archives.