Gold Star Records are composed of information on Tennessee soldiers who died of wounds or disease during World War I. They are arranged alphabetically and include information about the soldier such as date of birth, occupation, parents, branch of service, and date of death. Some files include additional information such as letters, pictures, and news clippings. These records were compiled during the 1920s from information given by the soldiers' families. These records are now on file at the Tennessee State Library and Archives in Record Group 53.
The online index gives the name and county (where noted) of each Tennessee soldier with a Gold Star file. You may order the records on microfilm through the interlibrary loan service. You may also download the complete file (in PDF format) of any Gold Star soldier in the digital collection, Tennessee World War I Gold Star Records, 1918-1924, for free using the "Download" button when viewing a specific soldier's file. If you want to order high-resolution digital or printed versions of the photographs in a Gold Star file, you will need to submit an image order.
The Index to Gold Star Records does not include all Tennesseans who died while serving in the military during World War I. The book History of American Legion, Department of Tennessee, 1919-1933 (D570.85 .T2A7) has a complete listing of the dead in the Court of Honor in the War Memorial Building in Nashville. E-mail the Tennessee State Library and Archives and we will check this book for a particular name. The Library and Archives will respond to e-mail requests promptly; response time may vary, depending on the amount of research required to answer your question and the unique nature of your request. If you need immediate assistance you may call the reference desk at (615) 741-2764 or visit us in person.