2 Replies Latest reply on Sep 22, 2021 1:44 PM by Rachael Salyer

    Finding WWII Officer Serial Numbers

    Matt Mabe Newbie

      For World War II records, I know that enlisted serial numbers can be searched on NARA's website based on the digital enlistment records. However, these are only for enlisted men. Is there any online repository for Officer serial numbers? The numbers that look like this "O-123456"


      Thus far, I've not been able to find any resource online that houses WWII officer serial numbers. Any assistance or recommendations would be most appreciated. Thank you

        • Re: Finding WWII Officer Serial Numbers
          Elliot Schneider Ranger



          Who are you looking for name, DOB and place of birth if known have access to other sites that could offer information on an O#

          • Re: Finding WWII Officer Serial Numbers
            Rachael Salyer Pioneer

            Dear Mr. Mabe,


            Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


            To the best of our knowledge, no comprehensive list of World War II U.S. Army officers and serial numbers has been compiled and made available online. This information may, however, be available from other sources. Please note that many records in our holdings that include officers’ names and service or serial numbers are likely to be arranged alphabetically by last name and may only be searchable by name and not by service or serial number.


            We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the series Army Officers Pay Cards, 1940-1951 in the Records of the National Archives and Records Administration (Record Group 64) that contains the name, rank, and service number of officers. Because this series is so extensive, it is regularly used in reconstructing military service data destroyed as a result of the 1973 fire at the National Personnel Records Center. These records have not been digitized. For information about these records, please contact the National Archives at St. Louis (RL-SL) at stl.archives@nara.gov.


            If you are interested in the officers from a particular unit, then there may be some relevant information in that unit’s rosters. Copies of most of the monthly rosters from November 1912-1943 and 1947-1959 for Army units are in the custody of the National Archives at St. Louis (RL-SL). For more information about these records, please contact RL-SL. Rosters for units serving in World War II from 1944-1946 were destroyed in accordance with Army disposition authorities.


            If you are searching for information about specific officers, then you may also wish to request copies of their Official Military Personnel Files (OMPFs). OMPFs and individual medical reports for officers of the U.S. Army who were separated from the service after June 1917 and before 1959 are in the custody of NARA's National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) in St. Louis. In many cases where personnel records were destroyed in the 1973 fire, proof of service can be provided from other records such as morning reports, payrolls, and military orders, and a certificate of military service will be issued. Please complete a GSA Standard Form 180 and mail it to NARA's National Personnel Records Center, (Military Personnel Records), 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO  63138-1002.  For more information see Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF), Archival Records Requests.


            Plus, we located several smaller series that contain officers names and service numbers. Most of these series are for particular units or organizations. The series Monthly Personnel Rosters of Officers, 4/1943-5/1944 in the Records of the War Department General and Special Staffs (Record Group 165), for instance, provides names and service numbers, and it consists of monthly personnel rosters of officers assigned to the American Intelligence Service, Miami Beach, Florida. Another example is the series Military Service Cards of Officers, 1941-1945 in the Records of U.S. Army Forces in the Middle Pacific (World War II) (Record Group 494) that includes information about officers who served in the Military Government of the Territory of Hawaii. These records have not been digitized. Please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) at archives2reference@nara.gov with questions about these records.


            We suggest that you use the National Archives Catalog to search for other potentially relevant records. You may contact the NARA reference unit listed in each Catalog description for assistance with those particular records.


            Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RL-SL and RDT2. Also, 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.


            Finally, we suggest that you contact the US Army Center of Military History or the U.S. Army Heritage & Education Center for further assistance.


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