The article War Diaries: Discover what individuals or military units did during the war explores war diaries, their usefulness and how you can access them. Now, you may wonder: In what formats are they available?
Most First World War Army diaries have been digitized. As for Second World War diaries, some were microfilmed, but many are available in their original paper format only.
To find out if a war diary from the Second World War is available on microfilm, you must perform a search in the Archives Search database. After you have selected the relevant diary title, just refer to the Conditions of access section of the archival description.
For example, the war diaries of the 1st Armoured Car Regiment (Royal Canadian Dragoons) for September and October 1945 are accessible on microfilm reel T-12563.
Although some microfilm reel numbers are not entered in the Archives Search database, we have created a list of reel numbers that you can consult on-site at 395 Wellington Street, in Ottawa, or by contacting Reference Services.
Questions or comments? We would love to hear from you!