A9. July 12, 1973 National Personnel Records Center fire

National Personnel Records Center fire July 12, 1973
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On July 12, 1973, a disastrous fire at the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) destroyed approximately 16-18 million Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF). The records affected:

Branch Personnel and Period Affected Estimated Loss
Army Personnel discharged November 1, 1912 to January 1, 1960 80%
Air Force Personnel discharged September 25, 1947 to January 1, 1964
(with names alphabetically after Hubbard, James E.)

No duplicate copies of these records were ever maintained, nor were microfilm copies produced. Neither were any indexes created prior to the fire. In addition, millions of documents had been lent to the Department of Veterans Affairs before the fire occurred. Therefore, a complete listing of the records that were lost is not available. However, in the years following the fire, the NPRC collected numerous series of records (referred to as Auxiliary Records) that are used to reconstruct basic service information.
From: Sunday, March 11, 1973
To: Thursday, July 12, 1973
Result: 123 days
4 months, 1 day
10,627,200 seconds
177,120 minutes
2952 hours
123 days
17 weeks

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