An ancestor of mine from Iowa should have registered for the WWII draft in the Fourth Registration, which is also known as the Old Man’s Registration. FamilySearch has a collection for these records, but records from Iowa have not been indexed (and Iowa is not available for browsing either).

The physical copy of these draft registration cards are at the National Archives in St. Louis, MO, US.


What is a cost effective way to obtain a (scanned) copy of a document from this collection?

I would prefer if I did not have to go to the National Archives myself to obtain the copy. Is there a company (or individual) that I could pay to obtain this copy on my behalf?

  • 1
    I changed your title to make it more specific, since the addresses and procedures for making a record request differ depending on which record group you're accessing and which NARA branch holds the records.
    – Jan Murphy
    Dec 24, 2014 at 17:15

1 Answer 1


The easiest way is to make a record request so that St. Louis can pull the record and scan it for you.

  • YouTube recording of Day 3 of the 2014 Virtual Genealogy Fair. See session 13, "Discovering Your Family’s Past in Military and Early Veterans Administration Personal Data Records and Selective Service Records" by Stephen A. Smith, Daria Labinsky, & David Hardin, National Archives at St. Louis, MO
  • handouts and presenter's biographies for 2014 Virtual Genealogy Fair
  • NARA St. Louis' holdings page, Selective Service Records.
  • downloadable PDF describing the collection World War II Selective Service Draft Cards: Fourth Registration, 1942 (rev. October 2013)
  • request form na-13172.pdf, Selective Service Request, Year of Birth Prior to 1960

The most cost-effective way would be to make your own record request. If you hire a professional, you'll have to pay for their time as well as paying the fees. There is an email address for NARA at the end of the Virtual Genealogy Fair presentation if you have further questions.

One caution: Men who were already in the military before the registration date (e.g. career military) will not be in the Draft Registration record groups.

  • Your links are great. Thank you very much. However, your third link/bullet is somewhat in contradiction with this page, which says that the registrant's death certificate and requestor's signature are also required. What do you make of this? Jan 10, 2015 at 2:20
  • This FamilySearch page agrees that some proof of death is needed, but doesn't say anything about a signature being required. Jan 10, 2015 at 2:29
  • @TysonWilliams the archives which hold a record group should always be consulted to find out what the current requirements are for access, and to determine which information might be redacted when requested by a third party.
    – Jan Murphy
    Jan 10, 2015 at 3:05
  • I already tried that. I called them yesterday, but the person I spoke with sounded extremely board and simply told me to submit a different form, which is not correct. Jan 10, 2015 at 3:08

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