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War Dead And Casualty Returns contd.

First World War dead are listed in Soldiers Died in the Great War or Officers Died in the Great War. These are available on CD-ROM and microfilm.

(To use the microfilm version you will need to know the regiment; for the CD-ROM, knowing it is helpful but not essential.) The information they give for each soldier includes: place of birth, place of enlistment, whether he died in action or of wounds (if known), theatre of war where death occurred, date of death and any medals for gallantry

St Tip
If you have no clue other than a common surname, it may take you a long time to find your ancestor in the lists of First World War dead.

War dead of the Second World War

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission also records the war dead and missing in the Second World War. In addition the PRO holds registers of war deaths in the Far East, 1941-5 (RG 33) and a roll of honour for men and women who died during the war (WO 304).

Casualty returns
The army casualty records include other reasons apart from death and wounding for absence from the regiment. They also include such reasons as desertion, discharges and authorised absences. They give details of the soldier, a brief account of the casualty and a note of the next of kin. Sometimes more personal detail is included, such as a will or a list of possessions.

St Tip
If you know a soldier's regiment but can't find any record of his discharge, the casualty returns are the next place to look

The surviving returns were recorded by regiment either monthly or quarterly and include both officers and ordinary soldiers. They cover the period between 1809 and 1910 and many have been indexed. A separate series covers 1842-72.

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