Findmypast Friday - Over 2 Million British Military Records Available To Search



  • New collection of over 1.6 million gallantry medal records, over 171,000 Military Medal records and 551,000 Royal Navy Service records released online.
  • Records span 140 years of British military history and cover both world wars, the Napoleonic wars, Indian Mutiny, Crimea, Boer Wars and many more conflicts.
  • Over 1.5 million new Military newspaper articles and the Lower Canada Census 1825 also available to search.


Today, 11th November 2016, over 2 million records of British soldiers and sailors spanning more than 140 years of conflict have been published online at Findmypast.

The publication, released to coincide with Remembrance Day 2016, consists of Campaign, Gallantry & Long Service Medals & Awards, Royal Naval Reserve records, ships musters and Royal Navy & Marines service and pension records.

The majority of the new additions come from The National Archive’s Admiralty and War Office series (ADM & WO) and consist of both fully searchable transcripts and scanned colour images of original documents, including:

Britain, Campaign, Gallantry & Long Service Medals & Awards

Findmypast has released a new collection of more than 1.6 million records of British Army, Royal Marines, Royal Navy, and Merchant Navy personnel who were recognised for their service, courage, and accomplishments in times of war and conflict. The awards include, in part, Military Medals, Distinguished Conduct Medals, Waterloo Medals, Merchant Navy Medals, and the Victoria Cross Award, the premier award for gallantry.

The new Britain, Campaign, Gallantry & Long Service Medals & Awards collection was created by merging 171,000 new Military Medal 1914-1920 records with Findmypast’s existing medal collections to form a single, comprehensive search experience. The records list the details of men and women who showed exceptional courage and fortitude in the face of danger and contains records from both world wars as well as the Peninsular War, Indian Mutiny, Waterloo, and many more conflicts.

British Royal Navy, Ships' Musters

This collection of over 280,000 muster rolls is an excellent resource for genealogists looking to find seafaring ancestors in the Royal Navy before service records began in 1853. Covering the years 1739 to 1861, the muster roll books recorded the names and birth details of every person present on board a ship and were kept on an 8-week basis for accounting and administrative reasons.

British Royal Naval Reserve 1899-1930

British Royal Naval Reserve 1899-1930 consists of over 81,000 service cards of officers and ratings who served with the RNR. The records list the names, ranks and dates of service of RNR personnel as well as details of awards, promotions and notes on their character and behaviour during combat.
The RNR is an amalgamation of the Royal Naval Reserve, created in 1859, and the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, created in 1903. The two forces were merged in 1958. At the beginning of the First World War, the RNR had 30,000 officers and men. Sailors within the RNR served at the Battle of Coronel, the Battle of Jutland, and in Gallipoli. Many others boarded trawlers searching for mines.

British Royal Navy & Royal Marines Service and Pension Records, 1704-1919

Over 185,000 records have just been released in the second phase of Findmypast’s Royal Navy & Royal Marines Service and Pension Records, 1704-1919 collection. The collection consists of an assortment of documents kept by the Greenwich Hospital and the Royal Hospital Chelsea to record the details of Greenwich Pensioners and spans over 230 years of British naval history from to 1704 to 1934.

The records allow family historians to uncover fascinating details of their ancestor’s career with the Royal Navy, such as their period of service, where they served, when they joined and if they were wounded in the line of duty.

The new additions will be free to search until midnight on Sunday. Findmypast has made their entire collection of more than 70 million world military records free until 23.59 GMT 13th November to allow family historians from around the globe the opportunity to uncover the stories of the military heroes within their own family.

Paul Nixon, military expert at Findmypast, says: Findmypast has consolidated all its medal collections under a single search AND released a new collection: Military Medal awards 1914-1920, the most comprehensively indexed version of this Military Medal available online. Family historians can now access all our medal records through one search to easily uncover the stories of those ancestors who sacrificed so much.

As an island nation we owe a huge debt of gratitude to the men and women who have served Great Britain at sea. Our new naval records will open up fresh lines of enquiry for thousands of people and cement Findmypast’s reputation for having the most comprehensive online collection of British naval records.”

Other new additions available to search this Findmypast Friday

Military Newspapers

Over 1.5 million new articles have been added to military publications available in our collection of historic British Newspapers. One new title has been added, The Naval & Military Gazette and Weekly Chronicle of the United Service, and additional articles have been added to the Army and Navy Gazette.

Lower Canada Census 1825

The Lower Canada Census 1825 contains over 74,000 records covering modern day Labrador and southern Quebec. Each search result will provide you will an image of the original document and a transcript revealing the language your ancestor spoke, where they lived and with how many people they lived.

About Findmypast

Findmypast (previously DC Thomson Family History) is a British-owned world leader in online family history. It has an unrivalled record of online innovation in the field and 18 million registered users across its family of online brands, which includes Lives of the First World War, The British Newspaper Archive and Genes Reunited, amongst others.

Its lead brand, also called Findmypast, is a searchable online archive of over two billion family history records, ranging from parish records and censuses to migration records, military collections, historical newspapers and lots more. For members around the world, the site is a crucial resource for building family trees and conducting detailed historical research.

In April 2003, Findmypast was the first online genealogy site to provide access to the complete birth, marriage, and death indexes for England & Wales, winning the Queen’s Award for Innovation. Since that time, the company has digitised records from across the globe, including major collections from Britain, Ireland, Australia, and the United States.