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Requesting Military Records from the National Personnel Records Center

The National Personnel Records Center will search for military records if you can provide the following information:

  • Full name
  • Branch of service
  • Entry and release dates
  • Whether an officer or enlisted
  • Military I.D. number
  • Social Security number
  • Date and place of birth

In addition, the request must come from the veteran or the veteran's immediate family. If the veteran is still living, he or she must give written consent for the release of the records. All genealogical requests should be submitted on GSA Form R6-7231 or Standard Form 180. You may only make one request per form, so be sure to order enough forms. To obtain a copy of the form, write to:

National Personnel Records Center (NPRC)
9700 Page Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63132

Once you return the completed form, the National Personnel Records Center will conduct a search. If they are able to locate what they believe is the correct file, they will photocopy it and send you a bill. Once you return the payment, they will send the copies. For larger files, they will not photocopy every page unless you specifically ask request this. Instead, they will photocopy the pages that they deem most useful. If they cannot determine which is the correct file, they will notify you of this.

Please note that a 1973 fire destroyed many Army records for the years 1912-1959, many Air Force records for the years 1947-1963, and a few Army records for personnel discharged since 1973. Records for veterans who were still living at the time of the fire were reconstructed.

Keys to successful genealogical research:

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