Brooklyn Navy Yard employment records

My grandfather, Walter T. Doyle, Serial # 131 88 07, was a member of the US Navy from April 21, 1917 thru Oct. 27, 1919. He then worked in the Brooklyn Navy Yard from 1919 possibly thru the 1960s. Is there any source to verify if and when he worked at the Navy Yard, and what he did there? (Per census records, his occupation was listed as a rivet heater and a corker).

Thank you for any assistance.

Martin

  • Martin, I work at the Brooklyn Navy Yard running the tour programs there, and we get this questions a lot, but

    we usually do not have a very satisfactory answer for people. The personnel records for the Brooklyn Navy Yard are held at the National Archives at St. Louis, and you can request these records to be sent to you; however, please note that NARA St. Louis suffered a major fire in 1973 that destroyed a large portion of these records, so what you're looking for may be lost. Here is info from NARA to request these documents: https://www.archives.gov/st-louis/opf

    I did a cursory search through the shipyard's newsletter (1941–1966), but did not find his name mentioned there. If he did work there through WWII, usually there would be a mention, as there often is for workers that were there 20+ years. Hope this helps!

  • Dear Martin Doyle,

     

    Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

     

    We searched the National Archives Catalog and located Official Military Personnel Files, 1885–1998, which includes the Official Military Personnel File (OMPF) for Doyle Walter Thomas -- [Service Number] 001318807, [Date of Enlistment] 04/21/1917. This record has not been digitized and is not available online. OMPFs and medical records of enlisted men of the U.S. Navy who were separated from the service after 1885 and before 1960 are located at NARA's National Personnel Records Center (NPRC), (Military Personnel Records), 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO  63138-1002. To request these records, please mail a completed GSA Standard Form 180 to NPRC. We suggest that you enclose a print out of the Catalog listing for his file with the SF-180. Veterans and next of kin of deceased veterans also may use eVetRecs to request records. See eVetRecs Help for instructions. If there is any information requested by the form that you do not know, you may omit it or provide estimates (such as for dates), but the more information you provide, the easier it will be to locate the correct file. For more information see Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF), Archival Records Requests.

     

    Please be aware that the NPRC is prioritizing the requests for separation documents needed by veterans and their dependents to prove eligibility for a variety of benefits. The NPRC expects to eliminate this portion of the backlog by fall 2022, and restore their pre-pandemic response times of under ten days for these requests later this fall. It will take considerably longer to eliminate the backlog on other types of requests, such as genealogical requests for complete copies of records. For more information, please refer to Onsite Operations at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis.

     

    If your grandfather worked at the Brooklyn Navy Yard as a federal civilian employee, we suggest that you request a copy of his Official Personnel File (OPF). OPFs and medical information for individuals who worked for the U.S. government in a civilian capacity before 1952 are in the custody of the National Archives at St. Louis (RRPO). Please email RRPO via email at stl.archives@nara.gov and  include the full name used during Federal employment, date of birth, Social Security Number (if applicable), name and location of the employing Federal agency, beginning and ending dates of Federal Service. For more information, please check the Official Personnel Folders (OPF), Archival Holdings and Access website.

     

    OPFs and medical information for individuals who worked for the U.S. government in a civilian capacity since 1952 are in the custody of NARA's National Personnel Records Center Annex. Written requests may be mailed or faxed to National Personnel Records Center Annex, 1411 Boulder Boulevard, Valmeyer, IL 62295. The fax number is 618-935-3014. Please include the full name used during Federal employment, date of birth, Social Security Number (if applicable), name and location of the employing Federal agency, and beginning and ending dates of Federal service. Certain information in the OPF may not be available to the general public without the written consent of the individual. For more information, please check the Official Personnel Folders (OPF),Federal (non-archival) Holdings and Access website.

     

    Please note that the 1973 fire primarily affected service records for Army personnel discharged November 1, 1912 to January 1, 1960 and for Air Force personnel discharged September 25, 1947 to January 1, 1964. Naval OMPFs and federal civilian OPFs generally were not affected by the fire.

     

    You may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgment as well as a substantive response to your reference request. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.

     

    Finally, please also note that if your grandfather worked at the Brooklyn Navy Yard as a contractor, and not as an official federal civilian employee, there will not be an OPF for him. If he worked as a contractor, any employment records that still exist would most likely be in the custody of his employer or its successors.

     

    We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your family research!

     

  • Andrew -

    Where are the copies of The Shipworker kept? I would like to do a deeper dive on them, if possible.

    And how is the tour? I am going to go to brooklyn to visit Holy Cross Cemetery, some churches, Brooklyn College, Erasmus Hall, looking for family history information.

    Since a lot of my family lived in the late 1800s - early 1900s in and around the Navy Yard and Fort Green, I may go there, too.

    Thanks.

    Martin

  • hello Mr. Gustafson

    my dad, Jakob or Jack Naimann worked at the brooklyn navy yard during and for several years after world war ll. i believe he was an electrician there. would you be so kind to check to see if his name is in the shipyard's newsletterr? thank you. leslie rubinson