Leading military historian and researcher, Jonathan Gawne, explains and shares the techniques he uses to research archives, libraries, veteran associations and myriad other sources of information to track down the wartime career of an individual. The author describes this as "What I did, and what you can do to find out what 'he' did in the army."
The book gives an overview of the Army in World War II, from the basics up. Learn the difference between a corporal and a major, or a squad and a brigade. What can you tell from a serial number? What is the difference between the quartermaster corps and the transportation corps? What was the path most soldiers took from civilian life to trained soldier? What (and where) is the ETO, PTO and ATO? All the basic facts you need to understand Army service in WW2.
He goes on to explain how to find information from such sources as discharges, uniforms, paperwork, the National Personnel records center, National Archives, other facilities and what you can expect from veterans organizations (and how to find them). Places to look for information and what you can or cannot get from them.
Finally the book helps you to assemble the data you have collected and piece the story of your relatives' wartime service together. It also gives advice on preserving the memories - oral histories, photos, artifacts, documents, etc.
Detailed appendices give information on such things as insignia of ranks and branches, listing of common MOS's, a breakdown of each division by sub unit, with a brief history and a listing of their campaigns, a capsule history of each campaign and a bibliography of useful books on various campaigns and units. Color illustrations of campaign ribbons, decorations and insignia accompany the detailed text.
This book addresses an increasing need to record and understand the lives of the greatest generation and their service to the country.
“…a great read not only for genealogists wishing to research an ancestor, but also for those who simply have an interest in the United States Army during World War II… written so that anyone, even those with no military background, can understand, yet also includes more advanced information… detail is phenomenal… a must read reference book for any professional genealogist or military historian…”
“… a fascinating book…no veteran post should be without it.”
DAILY TIMES, 2008-04-08
“…very practical useful guide to assist all those whose relatives served in the wartime US Army. …very well illustrated… Finding You Father’s War is highly recommended for all those who find themselves in need of assistance in doing research on World War II.”
JOURNAL FOR AMERICA'S MILITARY PAST (SPRING / SUMMER 2007), 2007-07-15
“…a useful book for anyone trying to establish the history of any US veteran during WWII.”
MILITARY TRADER, 2007-10-07
…a thoroughly comprehensive guide to the U.S. Army in the World War II period… covers an enormous range of subjects…”
NYMAS , 2007-06-07
a terrific guide that details how to go about researching and understanding the lives of a generation of servicemen that answered their nation’s call when the world was at war.
ON POINT, 2008-01-15
“…focus is on researching individual and social history. Using this book will help you write a family history narrative.”
GENEALOGY BOOK REVIEWS, 2013-03-05
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