Information about flags, colors, streamers, guidons, insignia, uniforms:

U.S. Army Institute of Heraldry
9235 Gunston Road, Room S-112
Fort Belvoir, VA., 22060
Tel: 703-806-4968/9  DSN: 656-4968/9

Information pertaining to unit Lineage and Honors:

Organizational History Branch
U.S. Army Center of Military History
1099 14th Street N.W.
Washington, D.C., 20005
Tel: 202-761-5413


The NATIONAL PERSONNEL RECORDS CENTER (NPRC) - St. Louis

(A) Serviceman's PERSONAL RECORDS

Commonly referred to as "YOUR 201 FILE" the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) in St. Lois, MO
keeps your personal "OFFCIAL MILITARY PERSONNEL FILE".... this is the complete packet of your
records. i.e. every record of your service, copies of awards and commendations, and tests you took
from basic through discharge. An SF 180* will be needed to obtain your packet (see SF 180 below).

DD-214 is that single page of paper that you got upon your discharge and the document that you are
constantly being asked for as "proof" of your military service - it is also held in St. Louis and a form SF
180 is needed. Although, a new ON-LINE REQUEST can be made using the governments new computer
access system, eVetRecs (April 2012)  System by using this internet link:

http://archives.gov/st-louis/
(B) Unit PERSONNEL RECORDS
-----------------------------
(Monthly) COMPANY ROSTERs and (Daily) MORNING REPORTs for your unit are also kept in St. Louis.
They were prepared by the Company Clerks of each Co. in the battalion. It is my suggestion that you
request a Company Roster for only one or two months at a time - and be sure to ask for YOUR
COMPANY. Only ask for two or three days at a time for Morning Reports..... they don't like it when you
ask for too much at a time! [Daily Battalion Journals are kept at the National Archives & Records
Administration (NARA), Suitland, MD[see below].
SF 180* will be needed to obtain Company Rosters and Company Morning Reports.

*SF 180 is Standard Form 180.
You MUST fill out this form to get ANY action from St. Louis. They make this easier now and can be done
online via the internet.

www.archives.gov/st-louis/

Write to:
National Personnel Records Center
Attn: U.S. Army Liaison
Military Personnel Records
9700 Page Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63132


MEDALS not issued or lost

You can get your medals from St. Louis online if you lost your medals or want to request replacements. 
This requires a signed authorization form.

More information is available at this location: http://www.archives.gov/veterans/replace-medals.html

To write for medals:
National Personnel Records Center
1 Archives Drive
St. Louis, MO., 63138


NATIONAL ARCHIVES AND RECORDS AMINISTRATION (NARA) Washington D.C.

UNIT RECORDS

Has unit operational information like the daily BATTALION JOURNAL (S-3 Journal, Duty Officers Log,
etc.), and OPERATION REPORT, LESSONS LEARNED (ORLL), and other goodies. All these records (and
there are 9,000 cubic feet of them) are filed under  RECORDS GROUP 472
Records of the United States Forces in Southeast Asia, 1950-1975 held by the MODERN MILITARY
RECORDS UNIT at College Park, MD.

You can make a request online via the internet. They will respond via email with information that they
find pertaining to your search request and will also submit a "quote" detailing the cost to reproduce
the records. They can be ordered in paper copy form or via a CD/DVD. Cost is .75 cents per page.

(NOTE: This Natl. Archives address will send you records for ANY ARMY UNIT IN VIETNAM. Request by
YOUR unit..... mine (ours) was the 2/12th Infantry so I use it on this website.)

http://www.archives.gov/contact/inquire-form.html#part-b

Write to:
National Archives
Attn: Textual Reference (Vietnam)
8601 Adelphi Road
College Park, MD 20740-6001

Military Records Textural Reference Phone #
(301)837-3510

WHAT TO REQUEST FROM THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES:

WHAT DO I REQUEST from the National Archives, Records Group 472.7.6, in College Park?

Here's the list; (starting with the most informative info)

(A) BATTALION JOURNAL (BATTALION DUTY OFFICERS LOG)

This is the minute by minute JOURNAL of what happened that day. The Log was kept at the 2/12th's
Tactical Operations Center and was written as things were happening (so it misses some things) and is
the best guide to find out what happened that day. It lists a lot of interesting things; Company
locations, actions, enemy & friendly casualties, etc. It was used as the basis for other reports. Ask for
the "2/12th INF Duty Officers Log (Daily Journal)" for the specific day you are interested in.

Recently I received the "S-3 Journal" for the same days as a "Duty Officers Log / Journal." I found the S-
3 Journal had all the information as the BN Off. Log - and a lot more detail. I recommend YOU REQUEST
THE 'S-3 JOUNAL for the date you are interested in.

(B) BATTALION OPERATIONAL REPORTS (ORLL)

[Operational Report and Lessons Learned]
This is a summary of actions during a time period. Operation Reports were written on a quarterly basis
and kind of dry - but they DO describe the battalion’s activities. Ask for the "2/12th INF Battalion
Operational Report" for the day you are interested in. [They probably won’t send you the entire
reporting periods Operational Report because it's too long.]

(C) COMBAT AFTER ACTION REPORTS

Written by the 18th MILITARY HISTORY DETACHMENT, 25th DIVISION [or the History unit attached to
YOUR division]. These are great - IF the action was significant enough to have a member of the
Detachment come out to the field and wrote it up. [These should not be confused with ORLLs
(Operational Reports/Lessons Learned) - which are a way different animal!] Ask for the "After Action
Report by the 18th Military History Detachment (25th Div)" for the specific date and describe the
action.

(D) BRIGADE DUTY OFFICERS LOG & BRIGADE OPERATIONAL REPORTS

(E) ANNUAL HISTORICAL SUPPLEMENT
This gives some of the highlights for the year for a particular unit and covers the period 1 January to 31
December. It appears to be the (very selective) highlights taken from the Quarterly Reports and ORLL's
- the year in review on 9 or 10 pages.

These records are in Records Group 472.7.3 and give a more overall picture of what was happening at
the next (or) "parent" level. Ask for them by date. BUT WHICH BRIGADE was the 2/12th INF in??? Good
question! It varied over the years. Sometimes the 2/12th wasn't assigned to any Brigade in the Division
- it was OPCON to another division, or the Corps, or the II Field Force. Confused? So am I! But here is
my best shot at putting the 2/12th to a parent unit by time period.... and you can't take this to the bank!
Use as a guide only.

1966 to August 1967....3rd Brigade, 4th Inf. Div.
Aug 67 to Sometime in mid 68.... 3rd Brigade, 25th Div
[OPCON to 1st Inf. Div. at An Loc]
TET 68 ....3d Bde, 25th (and at Hoc Mon Opcon to Capitol Military Assistance Command).
mid 68 to FEB 70.... 2nd Brigade, 25th Div.

WHAT YOU REALLY WANT FROM THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES IS THE "BATTALION DUTY OFFICERS LOG /
DAILY JOURNAL" for the day(s) you are interested in - they have the best details for any given day!
Once again, the address is National Archives, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD 20740-6001

NATIONAL ARRCHIVES WEBSITE:
http://www.archives.gov/contact/inquire-form.html#part-b

The U.S. ARMED SERVICES CENTER FOR UNIT RECORDS RESEARCH (CURR)

CURR has information on CASUALTIES (and is used by the VA to verify claims).
Contact via www.tpromo2.com/usvi.curr1.htm

Write to:
U.S. Armed Services Center for Unit Records Research (CURR)
Suite 101
7798 Cissna Road
Springfield, VA 22150-3197

FINDING A BUDDY

The U.S. Army's Public Information Office offers this website with some options for you.
Click On:
<http://www.army.mil>

Another great place to "Post" a search request for a buddy is:
<http://www.military.com>

COLD WAR RECOGNITION CERTIFICATE

All members of the armed forces who served from Sept. 2, 1945 to Dec. 26, 1991 are entitled to this.
You must submit proof of service like a copy of your DD214 [Discharge Certificate]. Or, any government
document with your social security / service number and date.... like a copy of an old order or award.
[If you lost your DD214; You can obtain a MILIARY ELIGIBILITY CERTIFICATE from St. Louis (see address
above) or you should have a DD214 certified copy on file at the County Courthouse of the home town
you returned to after Nam.]

Write a letter like this;

COLD WAR RECOGNITION
Suite 400
4035 Ridge Top Road
Fairfax, Virginia 22030

Please send me a Cold War Recognition Certificate for my service to the United States government
during the authorized period of September 2, 1945 to December 26, 1991.

Enclosed is a source document which verifies my service during the Cold War Era. I understand that the
enclosed source document will not be returned.

Please mail my Cold War Recognition Certificate to the following address:

Your Name
555 Main Street
Pleasantville, State 00000

Submission of this request confirms my faithful service to the nation during the Cold War Era. My
service in the Armed Forces was honorable.

Sincerely,
(s) Your Name

MAPS

High quality B & W maps of Vietnam can be obtained from the LIBRARY OF CONGRESS. They are the
same topographical maps we used over there. Unfortunately, color copies are no longer available to
order. These are B&W photocopies - they are good though.

Write and REQUEST SERIES L-7014 MAP INDEX (VIETNAM) and they will send you the Map Index for
Vietnam and an order form - it's free. Each map you order (as of today) will

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
GEOGRAPHY & MAP DIVISION
WAHINGTON, DC 20540


Shortcut the process by finding the map you want on my list below and request the map you want by
the STOCK # and MAP NAME

THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
PHOTODUPLICATION SERVICE
101 INDEPENDENCE AVENUE, S.E.
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20540-4570

You can look at Ray's Map room if you only want to see the country
http://www.rjsmith.com/topo_map.html

or Jim Henthorn's Vietnam Page for maps
http://www.nexus.net/~911gfx/vietnam.html
RECORDS & RESEARCH

MEDICAL RECORDS  Your military medical records are sent to the Veterans Administration after your
discharge. or are stored in St. Louis. Contact your state's VA office to obtain copies or contact the
NPRC..
Records & Research Records & Research
Example request made online to NARA for unit records

As seen on the website:

I have a question about research and records at NARA


Please select the topic of your question:

-records created by the United States Military

Please type your question in the box below.
Please be as specific as possible - Details:

Unit - C Co. 2nd Bn 12th Infantry Regiment, 25th Division
Location - Republic of Vietnam, Vietnan War
Time - October 1 to 31, 1968
Locate Battalion daily journals for 2/12th; may be listed as S3 journals or Brigade Daily Journals - describes daily troop movement, grid locations, operational descriptions for all companies in the 2/12th Inf - DO NOT CONFUSE with 2/12th CALVARY.
Company operated under the 2nd Brigade during this time.

End of example
If you are not SPECIFIC with all the information, you will not get what you ask for. NARA seems to have a problem with reproducing the same information they locate for you when they send the order to reproduction. They fail to write the same description you give them and what they do for researching, then fail to write that detail on the reproduction order.
They will refund your money if they send the wrong material. The problem is, it takes about a month from the time you request the research to receiving the material in the mail if all goes well. If not, you get to start all over again. I speak from experience. - Sarge
There are no short cuts when requesting records. Provide as much detail as possible. You are dealing with the Government here and time is on their side. Do your research and fill out all the paperwork. Much of this can be done on the internet now. Paper records from NARA costs .75 cents per copy. If you are doing a lot, consider going to College Park, MD and do the work yourself. The researchers there will pull the records you are looking for and have them available on hand if you arrange this before you arrive. - Sarge