Dear Mr. Olson,
Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!
For former Navy personnel, NARA's National Personnel Records Center will verify the awards to which a veteran is entitled and forward the request with the verification to the appropriate Navy department for issuance of the medals. For requesting medals and awards, please use eVetRecs on NARA’s website or complete a GSA Standard Form 180 and send it to NARA's Military Personnel Records, National Personnel Records Center, 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO 63138-1002. Provide as much information as possible in Section II under "other."
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, NPRC will continue servicing requests ONLY associated with medical treatments, burials, homeless veterans seeking admittance to a homeless shelter, and those involving the VA Home Loan program. If your request is urgent, please see Emergency Requests and Deadlines. Please refrain from submitting non-emergency requests such as replacement medals, administrative corrections, or records research until NPRC returns to pre-COVID staffing levels. Please check archives.gov/veterans for updates to the NPRC operating hours and status. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.
In addition, we located the document Secretary of the Navy Instruction (SECNAVINST) 1650.1J for the Department of the Navy Military Awards Policy that may offer some clarification about awards eligibility. The World War I Victory Medal most likely falls under the category of Campaign, Expeditionary, and Service (CE&S) awards.
Finally, the Naval History and Heritage Command (NHHC) provides some information about the World War I Victory Medal on their website. We suggest that you contact them directly for further assistance.
We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your family research!
[Some information provided by Nate Patch, Subject Matter Expert.]
I am aware of the process required to verify awards on an individual basis. I also am aware that the WWI Victory Medal is considered a campaign, expeditionary, and service medal.
My question is broader: After WWI, did the United States Navy actually distribute the WWI Victory Medal to the women who served on active duty during the war? All of them had been released from active duty by the time the Department of the Navy authorized award of the medal in June of 1919. I can find no records that any of the women who served as Yeomen (F) actually received the medal nor have I found any pictures of any of them wearing the medal. Since some of them also served in uniform in WWII, one would expect to see some of them wearing the ribbon on their uniforms.
Charles C Olson
LTC(R), QMC, GaARNG