October 2007

Spotlight On…   Veterans’ Resources

The immeasurable debt owed to our veterans is remembered yearly on November 11. Representations of their service can be found throughout the Library, rendered symbolically, as in the building’s original dedication to Cincinnati veterans, and in our large collection of print materials and online resources. As a Federal Depository Library, The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County offers up-to-date official government information on veterans’ issues and services through our Information and Reference Department.

Laws and Legislation

Legislation on veterans’ benefits is encoded in Title 38 of the U.S. Code. Both houses of Congress have Veterans’ Affairs Committees. The House and Senate Committee webpages include data and reviews of legislation affecting veterans.

Armed Services

Online resources are offered through the Department of Defense which posts current events, news briefs, pictures, and defense links. Each of the armed forces also hosts its own webpage:

Information on the Selective Service Administration, how it works, who must register, and how to obtain records is available online.

Veteran Records and Benefits

The Veterans Administration offers information on veterans' benefits, medical information, and how to find former comrades. Veterans can also apply for benefits online at the VONAPP site. Questions about burial benefits, memorials, locating veterans, and obtaining records and medals is posted at the National Cemetery Administration. The American Battle Monuments Commission maintains a database of U.S. military cemeteries and memorials on foreign soil. The Veterans Administration has state-level offices in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana. The Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion are private organizations for veterans offering services to its members.

Information on issues related to medical conditions and health care for veterans is available on the National Library of Medicine’s Veterans and Military Health webpage. The army website includes Medal of Honor recipients listed by name.

Detailed documentation of U.S. war activities and individual service records are located at the National Archives and Records Administration in Washington, D.C. The NARA is open to the public and offers fee-based research assistance. Its website hosts a searchable database of its extensive collection with information for researchers on its use.

Military History

The Information and Reference Department, with its direct link to the Government Printing Office, has a wealth of information on the U.S. military, including legislation, war campaigns, military insignia, military machinery, rosters and statistics. Some of these documents are not in the catalog but indexes and staff assistance are available in the department to help locate military documents. The Government Printing Office has an online catalog which can be searched for government documents published since 1994.

In the Library’s collection, you’ll find thousands of volumes of descriptions and narratives of U.S. and foreign wars, including individual unit histories and accounts written by the veterans themselves. We also offers genealogists tools and sources for finding military census materials, including pension records.

The Information and Reference Department also includes information on political science issues behind warfare, military leaders, diplomacy, and information on medals, decorations and uniforms, books on weaponry and military equipment, and social issues related to war and military service. Reference Department staff can assist in locating suitable subject headings and Dewey numbers in searching for materials.

The Library Catalog uses specific subject headings for each war. Try these subject headings for faster results: