intheirsteps war history

War records

aifww1The AIF Project is the construction of the online database that draws on a wide range of sources to provide details on the 330,000 men and women who served overseas in the (First) Australian Imperial Force, 1914-1918.

The details on individuals who served in WW1 can be drawn from a number of readily available sources as follows:(a) EMBARKATION ROLLS – These contain the information given on the Attestation Forms signed by each member of the AIF at the time of enlistment. The following information can be found on the Embarkation Rolls:-
name – alias – address – age –  religion – occupation – rank at enlistment – date of enlistment – regimental number at enlistment – Unit at enlistment – date of enlistment – details of previous military service – next of kin – next of kin’s address – relationship of next of kin – date of embarkation from Australia – ship of embarkation – port of embarkation


The Nominal Roll adds details over and above that available from the Embarkation Rolls as follows:-
Regimental Number at end of War – Rank at end of War –  Unit at end of War – decorations received – fate during the war e.g. killed in action, or wounded in action –  date of fate(c) DECORATIONS
The Australian War Memorial has details of decorations as follows:-
– Award – date of promulgation – circumstances to conferral(d) PROMOTIONS
Promotions at the commissioned level are available from the Army Lists.
They include details such as:  new Rank – date of promotion
Minimal details are available for non-commissioned officers.(e) ROLL OF HONOUR CIRCULARS
In an effort to obtain details for the official Roll of Honour and also for the writing of Official Unit Histories, the Government sent out questionnaires in the 1920’s and 1930’s to the next of kin of those members who had died during the War or whose death up to 1921 was attributable to the War. The Roll of Honour is the bronze tablets that line the colonnades of the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.
– place of birth – age when arriving in Australia if born outside Australia
– school – other training – occupation – previous military service
– place where killed or wounded – age at death – Biographical details
– details of any relatives in the AIF who were killed or who distinguished themselves.(f) POST WAR DEATHS – Details for those who died after the 1921 cutoff date for the Nominal Roll, and whose death was attributable to the War, can be found in the records of the Office of War Graves. Details are available as follows:-
– Date of death – age at death – place of burial/cremation – recorded in Garden of Remembrance.

  • All WW1 and WW2 service records are only available from National Archives of Australia at
  • WW1 Nominal roll and embarkation roll and all Australians who died in all wars is on Australian War Memorial website –
  • WW2 information on WW2 servicemen.
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