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Reading or viewing the news of the day can enrich your family history and add another dimension. The trick is to know what to search for. Your ancestor may not be listed by name in these records, but you may be able to learn about his time in the service through mentions of his unit, war conditions, battles, and glimpses of everyday life in the military. Learn as much as possible about your ancestor’s military service (e.g., military unit to which he was assigned, commanding officers, battles and engagements, etc.). Then formulate keyword searches based on what you know.

Wars and political conflict have always held people's interest, even those not directly linked to them. Newspapers and other forms of media have recorded everything from political arguments to world wars.

They can cover large issues like battle descriptions, to personal issues like the struggles of a single soldier. has a collection of military newspapers and newsreel videos that will help you understand the issues your ancestor may have dealt with.

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