Heritage Project digitizes War Diaries of World War II
Héritage, a project to digitize and provide access to vast troves of archival material from Library and Archives Canada, is producing a database of war diaries for Canadian units during the Second World War.
A war diary is an official record that describes in great detail the day-to-day operations and activities of military units in the field. Unlike soldiers' personal diaries, war diaries are focused on the administration and operations of the unit they cover, and generally do not contain information about individual personnel.
The purpose of these diaries was to both record information which could later be used by the military to improve its training and tactics, as well as to generate a detailed record of units' activities for future use by historians. War diaries "supply authentic material for the history of the unit, and of the force" and "provide data upon which to base improvements in training, equipment, organization and administration." The British Army first required war diaries to be used in 1907 to help the army prevent repeating the mistakes they had made during the Second Boer War.
So far, about 135 reels of microfilm are viewable online.
Permanent link: http://heritage.canadiana.ca/view/oocihm.lac_mikan_133700