(Digital) Archives or how to get research done from home

Research and working remotely became even more important and essential during the days of Covid-19 and the confinement. Archives, libraries are closed. How to get the sources for the research? Our three main archives for “Warlux”, the Archives Nationales de Luxembourg, Deutsche Dienststelle, the former Wehrmachtauskunftstelle (WASt, today Bundesarchiv Berlin) and the Military Archive in Freiburg closed their doors as well due to the virus.

The main sources (besides the FEDDEF database) are the card index at the former WASt/Wehrmacht, personal files and combat records in Freiburg and in Luxembourg recruitment lists and documents of the Nazi-administration (and more) in Luxembourg, are not yet digitised.

Formats such as lists of casualties of WWI (as crowdsourcing project), or the search engine about the graves of fallen Wehrmacht soldiers at Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge e.V. (German War Graves Commission) support researchers in war history.

Search engine graves (Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge e.V.)

“Thematic” collections such as the digitised record groups concerning the WWI at the Bundesarchiv offer a unique overview of the preserved documents and to make deeper research “tasteful”.

These records are only a selection of the preserved records but are not further relevant for research on special questions or single persons, like in the current WARLUX project.

Digitised databases like the lists of casualties of WWI are quite rare, especially for names and lists of soldiers who fought in the German Army. The picture is different however across the Ocean. Databases and lists of soldiers of the Civil War are accessible online. Even if the information contains just an index of the men who served in the Civil War with only rudimentary information from the service records, it provides the first step for further research.

Soldiers and Sailors Database – https://www.nps.gov


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