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# Tuesday, 24 May 2016
12 Free Websites to Search for & Honor Fallen Military Ancestors on Memorial Day
Posted by Diane

“We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance ... Let no neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.” 


First Decoration Day Ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery, 1868.
Library of Congress.


These are the words of Gen. John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, who declared in 1868 that May 30 would be a day to decorate the graves of Civil War soldiers with flowers.


Daisies gathered for Decoration Day, 1899.
Library of Congress
.


After World War I, Decoration Day became an opportunity to honor Americans who've died serving in any war. The term "Memorial Day" was first used in 1882 and became common after the Second World War. A 1967 law made it the official name of the holiday.


Decoration Day at Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument, New York City, 1917.
Library of Congress.


To help you honor your military ancestors, we've gathered these websites where you can search for those who died serving in US wars:
  • Nationwide Gravesite Locator database from the US Department of Veterans Affairs, which catalogs burial locations of veterans and their family members in VA national cemeteries, state veterans cemeteries, other military and Department of the Interior cemeteries, and private cemeteries (after 1997) when the grave is marked with a government marker

If you're ready to learn more about your family's military heritage, you'll want our genealogy guides to two of the most important types of military records: compiled service records (CMSRs) and pension records. Download these expert guides in ShopFamilyTree.com and start using them today.



Grave Decorated on Decoration Day, Gallipolis, Ohio, 1943.
Library of Congress.



Genealogy Web Sites | Military records
Tuesday, 24 May 2016 11:10:46 (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]