family research information
MILITARY SERVICE RECORD
If a member of your family participated in the Polish Forces that fought with the Allies in WW2, then your first step is to obtain their full service records. The British Ministry of Defence (MOD) hold the records for most of the members of the Polish Forces that fought in the west. NB: Should they have the records, be sure to request the full service record, otherwise you will only receive a brief summary.
To check if the MOD have your relative's records send an email to:
Alternatively, their mailing address is:
MINISTRY OF DEFENCE
APC DISCLOSURES 5 (POLISH)
Building 1 (Ops), RAF Northolt
West End Road
Ruislip, Middlesex HA4 6NG
Tel.: +44 (0)20 8833 8603
If your family member served in the Polish Armed Forces prior to 1939, you should write to:
Central Military Archives
ul. Czerwonych Beretów 124 00-910
If your family member served in the Polish Army in France 1939-1940 and who subsequently did not serve under British Operational Command, you should write to:
Centre des archives du personnel militaire
Place de Verdun
64023 Pau cedex
Tél : 05 59 40 46 92
Information to include:
* Your relative's name (including any variant spellings), date of birth, military unit (if known)
* Proof of kinship i.e all birth certificates back to the one that includes your relative
Hoover Institution Archives
Houses the Wladyslaw Anders archives and Polish wartime archives. The collection includes over 18,000 original personal accounts and questionnaires of former prisoners and deportees - invaluable documents as they were filled in right after deportation, while the details were still fresh in peoples’ minds.
Contact: Irena Czernichowska Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: (650) 723-3563
When requesting documents from the Hoover Institute, provide as much information as you can. Even if nothing was written by your relative, they still may have valuable information that was written by someone else; all eye-witness accounts are cross referenced.
Memorial Society in Russia
Memorial assists victims of the Soviet Gulag, conducts research into the history of political repression and publicizes the findings in books, articles, exhibitions, museums, and websites of its member organizations. The website uncludes a database of over a million victims of Soviet repression, however, the search function is only available in Russian. The . Web address is: https://www.memo.ru/en-us/
International Tracing Service
The International Tracing Service in Bad Arolsen, Germany, assists victims of Nazi persecutions and their families by documenting their fate through the archives they manage. Contact them to find information about your family members who were Prisoners of War or were slave labourers in Germany during WW2. Web: http://www.its-arolsen.org
Siberian Exile Cross
The Siberian Exile Cross is awarded by the Polish President to those who were forcibly taken to Siberia by the Soviets. According to the law that established this award, the person must have been alive in January 2004, at the time that the law was passed. Anyone who died before this date is not eligible.
The application must be approved by a Polish veterans' organization, or other Polish organization that is acceptable. (Check with your local Polish Consulate for a list of acceptable organizations.) Once approved, you then forward the application to your local Polish Consulate and they will send it on to Poland for processing,
Once processed in Poland, the cross and accompanying certificate is sent to your local Polish Consul who will make arrangements to present it. It can take some time to be processed, so do not expect a speedy turnaround.
Application for the Siberian Exile Cross:
Here is a translation of the application
that explains the different parts of the form:
Here is an example of a completed application:
Here is a blank application for you to fill out:
Application forms must be filled out in Polish, and must be either typed or handwritten in BLOCK letters. Cursive writing will not be accepted.
Attach as much information and proof as possible. Examples of this include:
Copy of a release document from Siberia
Copy of a document from the Hoover Institute Archives (see research info above)
Copy of a listing on the Index of the Repressed
A screen shot of the page of an archival list that includes the person's name:
Any of the military lists found in the Archival Lists section of this website