McManus, Stephen. Civil War Research Guide: A Guide for Researching Your Civil War Ancestor.

Mechanicsville, PA: Stackpole Books, 2003.

For many American genealogists, especially for those in the Southern states, and even more especially for relative beginners (i.e., those who haven’t worked back to the colonial era), a frequent early goal is either to identify an ancestor who fought in the Civil War, or to track down a known (or rumored) soldier ancestor of whom little is known other than the name and state of service. For many years, the best how-to book to assist in this quest was Bertram Groene’s Tracing Your Civil War Ancestor, but that’s gone for rather too long without an update, and there are have been number of major changes in research methods for this subject over the past two decades that must be addressed. (more…)

Published in: on 13 March 2013 at 5:52 am  Leave a Comment  
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Knox, Debra Johnson. World War II Military Records: A Family Historian’s Guide.

Spartanburg, SC: MIE Publishing, 2003. 360p., softcover. Index, illus. $23.95. ISBN 1-877639-91-5. (PO Box 17118, Spartanburg, SC 29301 / Web: <>)

Knox is a professional private investigator and the author of two previous and well-regarded books, Find Anyone Fast and How to Locate Anyone Who Is or Has Been in the Military. In this volume, she attempts a comprehensive guide for both the novice and the experienced researcher attempting to discover information on a veteran of the Second World War. (Though the realization that WWII is now not only history but “genealogy” may be a little unsettling to some of us.) Like the author, I’m an army brat, the son a career officer who saw service in three wars as well as several decades of peacetime assignments. And, as an historian, librarian, and archivist, I naturally went looking for what had been omitted or misinterpreted in this volume.


Published in: on 21 June 2010 at 4:56 am  Leave a Comment  
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