Proposed pre-amble to the creation of an International War Graves Registry
In the spirit of a new beginning, at the dawn of the 21st Century and the 3rd Millennium,
and with the support and guidance of the United Nations and the European Union,
it is proposed to create the
INTERNATIONAL WAR GRAVES REGISTRY
which shall endeavour to be a central archive of war graves from all countries of the world, without prejudice, so that subsequent generations may know of the existence of such graves and possibly the circumstances of the individual.
The International War Graves Registry shall be an umbrella organisation comprised of individuals and organisations representing local, regional and national efforts to archive, photograph and research war graves in their respective locations.
The aim of the International War Graves Registry is to co-ordinate these local efforts to produce a permanent digital archive of consistent records and photographs for public access via the internet. The resultant archive will reduce or eliminate the need for duplication of research as well as publish the work of many researchers for the largest possible audience.
Researchers everywhere shall be invited to subscribe to the principles of the International War Graves Registry and contribute to the archive, records and photographs, for inclusion in the permanent registry archive. Individual researchers shall receive due recognition for each record contributed. Families and descendants will also be encouraged to contribute photographs and personal records for inclusion. Guidelines for contributions will be made available to potential contributors to reduce the registry’s workload.
It is intended that a branch office of the International War Graves Registry will be established in each represented country and that each branch office will be responsible for the co-ordination, collection and processing of records in that country. It will also be responsible for publicising the existence and aims of the registry in order to attract more volunteers and contributors to the archive.
It is hoped that the United Nations and the European Community will help with the logistics of co-ordinating and financing this endeavour. It is hoped that individual national and local governments will also contribute assistance where necessary. It is hoped that corporations and individuals will become sponsors of the project to help finance it.
Reading, England 06/01/2000
Guiding Principles and Proposed Constitution of the
International War Graves Registry
to be adopted by all branches, volunteers, staff, sponsors, contributors
In the Spirit of a New Beginning at the dawn of the 21st Century and the 3rd Millennium, it is understood that;
A) membership in this organisation shall be open to individuals, schools, corporations, societies, associations, governments and any other interested parties, without prejudice, from all countries of the world.
B) the aims of the International War Graves Registry is to co-ordinate the creation of an archive of war graves containing, at minimum a photographic record of each grave or, in the case of no known graves, the names on memorials to the missing and if available a more comprehensive record of the individuals concerned which could include personal portraits and biographies.
C) all contributions to the archive records shall be factual in nature, without political or religious comment, opinion or bias.
D) in instances where a branch office is in place, that office shall strive to co-ordinate the collection of, at least, photographs and, if available, records of war graves from all nations, without prejudice, buried within that countries’ borders.
E) all contributions to the archive shall be in the same or similar format, to be decided by the IWGR, so as to reduce the workload of the IWGR staff/volunteers.
F) all volunteers/contributors shall take utmost care and respect, while photographing war graves, or researching, in a cemetery, so as not to damage grave markers, plants etc.
G) individual graves may be sponsored to help defray the costs of producing the archive and the sponsor’s name shall be included on the sponsored grave’s web page. The cost of individual grave sponsorship shall be set by the IWGR and may be adjusted from time to time to account for inflation.
H) all members of this organisation shall subscribe to the principles as stated above
I _____________________________, hereby agree to abide by the aims and principles of the International War Graves Registry as outlined above and wish to become a member in good standing.
Organisation Name (if applicable) __________________________________
Phone (______) __________________Fax (______) __________________
The first organisational conference for the International War Graves Registry is currently being organised for Ypres, Belgium, November 2006. If you are interested in attending, please email