Ancestry.com is making available “more than 90 million U.S. war records from the first English settlement at Jamestown in 1607 through the Vietnam War’s end in 1975. The collection includes the names and gravestone details of 3.5 million deceased U.S. soldiers, including 2,000 who died in Iraq.” Users can pay $155.40 a year for unlimited access.
- Dot-com to unveil 4 centuries of military records, by Donna Borak, Associated Press, Sunday, May 27, 2007.
The records came from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and include “37 million images, draft registration cards from both world wars, military yearbooks, prisoner-of-war records from four wars, unit rosters from the Marine Corps from 1893 through 1958, and Civil War pension records, among others.” Ancestry.com spent $3 million to digitize the military records.
Budget constraints and a long list of unfinished priorities have limited federal efforts to make roughly 9 billion public documents available online, said National Archives spokeswoman Susan Cooper.
“In a perfect world, we would do all this ourselves and it would be up there for free,” she said. “While we continue to work to make our materials accessible as widely as possible, we can’t do everything.”
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