Korean War

It was the summer of 1950, only five years since the end of World War II when many men and women were sent to South Korea to help defend that nation from being overrun by North Korea. The border line was referred to as the 38th parallel.

Over a period of 3 years, under very harsh conditions on the Korean Peninsula, there were some 1.8 million Americans (men and women) who held back the invading North Korean Army. It was not just Americans involved, soldiers from the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia also sent troops and a few from other allied nations.

Eventually, a Military Armistice was signed, July 1953 – a ceasefire, with no treaty or victor. The toll for the United States was almost 40,000 Americans dying in action in Korea, and more than 100,000 were wounded. The end of July marks the National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day. The Korean War is sometimes referred to as ‘the forgotten war’

As you do your family tree, check you may well have had a relative who served in some form during the Korean War. Remember the females, because many were nurses and other non-combat positions serving directly in South Korean in war zones. Also, not all were stationed in South Korea, some were in other Pacific military bases or remained in the States serving as support personnel.

The National Archives has online records relating to those who served during the Korean War. Check out the listing, some with lists of causalities, nurses who served, those missing in action and those held as POWs.  

There is also the Korean War Project online. Here are more details, names and numbers of causalities, the nurses, the missing in action and the ones kept in North Korean prisoner of war camps. Also, the Korean War Database of veterans names is another good resource.

Have some names of relatives (uncles, cousins, etc), those born in the 1920s to early 1930s and see what you can find.

Photos: Korean War Memorial in Washington, DC; Map of North and South Korea and the 38th Parallel border.

Related FamilyTree.com Blogs:

Korean War Casualties

Old Soldiers Homes

Ancestor in Military Service

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