FAQS

Background

What is Ike’s Soldiers?
The mission of Ike’s Soldiers is to honor Dwight D. Eisenhower’s legacy through the compelling stories of the soldiers he led and share them with the world through IKEducation programs and digital and media platforms. By joining this project, YOU get to play a part in preserving history and honoring the lives that fought for our freedom. Ike’s Soldiers is a program of the Eisenhower Foundation (EF), which is the fundraising and programming arm of the Eisenhower Presidential Library. EF relies on volunteers, both individuals and organizations, throughout the nation to contribute veterans’ stories to Ike’s Soldiers. It collects and preserves the firsthand interviews and narratives of military veterans from World War II. In addition to audio and video recorded oral history interviews, Eisenhower Foundation accepts memoirs and collections of original photographs, letters, diaries, maps and other historical documents from veterans who served in the US armed services during World War II.
Who funds Ike’s Soldiers?
The Cain Foundation, in honor and recognition of the veterans of World War II, like the exemplary service of the 30th Infantry Division, graciously donated the funds to create this program. We thank you for your generous donation.
What is an oral history?
Many of the narratives in our collection take the form of an oral history interview. The Oral History Association offers this definition: “Oral history refers both to a method of recording and preserving oral testimony and to the product of that process. It begins with an audio or video recording of a first person account made by an interviewer with an interviewee (also referred to as narrator), both of whom have the conscious intention of creating a permanent record to contribute to an understanding of the past. A verbal document, the oral history, results from this process and is preserved and made available in different forms to other users, researchers, and the public.”
Who retains copyright of donated collections?
All Ike’s Soldiers participants give rights to Ike’s Soldiers, Eisenhower Foundation and Eisenhower Presidential Library to reproduce materials for display or for marketing through any mediums and nothing more. If the material provided by the veteran and interviewer is needed for anything else, the Eisenhower Foundation is required to request permission. Release forms need to be completed and signed before conducting the interview. All signed forms need to be completed online or, if printed, sent with artifacts to:
Eisenhower Foundation
Attn: Ike’s Soldiers
200 S.E. 4th Street
P.O. Box 295
Abilene KS 67410

Participation

How do I start?
Are you a family member, friend or fan of World War II veteran? If yes, begin by downloading the General Program packet contained HERE. Or, are you a high school or college student? If yes, we encourage you to check out our Student Program and begin by downloading the Student Information Packet HERE.
How do I start the process of submitting an interview to Ike’s Soldiers?
Check out the “How To” Video Series on the top of this FAQ page. More specific information is provided in your the Information Packet. If you are a student, be sure to check out our Student Information Packet, as there are some differences between the requirements.. All the information you need to get started, including all the necessary forms and guidelines are there!
How do I locate veterans to interview?
Many of our participants choose to interview friends or family members who have served in the military. If you do not know a veteran personally, google search local veterans service organizations, a local or regional Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facility, a senior center or a retirement community. These are good places to meet World War II veterans who might be interested in sharing their story. You can also contact us at info@ikessoldiers.com and we will connect you with any veterans who have expressed interest in being interviewed.
Who is eligible to submit their service story to the Ike’s Soldiers Project (ISP)?
Veterans who served in the U.S. military, in any capacity, during World War II, regardless of branch or rank, are eligible. Ike’s Soldiers accepts the stories of veterans as defined by the Department of Veterans Affairs: “A person who served in the active military service and who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable.”
Who conducts the interview?
Any individual or organization may participate. Students in college or high school have an opportunity to earn a small stipend for their submission, if they submit materials that follow the requirements listed on the Student Program.
I am a World War II veteran, and would like to share my story and be interviewed for Ike’s Soldiers. Is there someone in my area who would interview me?
Ike’s Soldiers encourages family members and friends to video tape their World War II veteran. Ike’s Soldiers also has an IKEducation program for students to facilitate interviews. If you are interested in submitting an oral history and do not have a family member, friend or local student who is available to videotape the interview utilizing the Ike’s Soldiers guidelines, please fill out the interest form, contact us at info@ikessoldiers.com .This does not guarantee a match, but the Team will do their best to set you up with an interviewer.
Can I share the story of a deceased veteran?
Yes. Ike’s Soldiers accepts collections of original, firsthand materials (such as photographs, memoirs, correspondence, video, audio recording, etc.) on behalf of deceased veterans. We can also accept oral history interviews with family members of deceased veterans, as long as they state that they are sharing stories recalled from a veteran that has passed. The Veteran’s Release Form may be signed by the veteran’s power of attorney, estate executor or legal heir.
Is there a deadline for participating in, or submitting materials to, Ike’s Soldiers?
No. Ike’s Soldiers is an ongoing program and continues to be supported by the Eisenhower Foundation and generous donors. While there is no deadline to submit materials, we encourage you to submit collections to Ike’s Soldiers using the submission form as soon as possible after you compile them. Veterans and their families are eager for their interviews to be included in Ike’s Soldiers program; therefore, the sooner items are submitted, the sooner we are able to process them into the collection.
What is an Identification Code?
The Identification Code is the veteran’s last name & birthdate and it is what the Eisenhower Foundation & Library uses to keep submissions organized. Please be sure to write your veterans identification code on all forms/documents/ physical artifacts & any other materials submitted both physically & digitally.
If I am a Student, may I participate in the general program?
If you are a student, you may choose to participate in the general program and submit according to the general program guidelines or follow the guidelines for the student program. However, you may not submit the interview in both programs or more than once.
If I am not a Student, may I participate in the student program?
No. The student program is only available to college and high school students. If you do not fit this profile, we invite you to participate in the main Ike’s Soldiers Program.

Collection Requirements

Can I submit multiple interviews or material for different veterans on the same device or submission form?
No. Please only submit one interview per veteran utilizing a separate submission form for each veteran. Each recording must be submitted using different forms, on separate devices, such as CDs, DVDs or USB (flash/thumb) drives, or in different folders on cloud base sharing programs such as google drive or dropbox. You may mail in multiple interviews in one package, but they must be of individual veterans (we do not accept group interviews, such as panels or roundtables). Each interview must be accompanied by its own set of forms, including the Biographical Data Form, Interviewer and Veteran Release Forms.
May I submit a single piece of media, such as a hard drive, with multiple interviews to Ike’s Soldiers?
If you do not have any physical materials to mail such as photos, uniforms or journals to go along with the veteran’s interview, you may submit multiple interviews on a single thumb drive or disc or in different folders on cloud base sharing programs such as Google drive or Dropbox. Please separate each interview file and label with the Veteran’s Identification Code (Last name & birthdate. Ex: Smith011030). If you are submitting multiple files for one veteran, please place all files into a folder on the hard drive labeled with that Veteran’s Identification Code. The Eisenhower Foundation cannot be responsible for trying to identify a veteran, so please organize and label everything clearly. If you are planning to send physical materials with your interviews, please separate your individual interviews by using different submission forms, or USB’s, DVDs, etc. and label it with the identification code of the veteran so it matches the Material Identification & Biographical Forms from the packet and your submission form.
Can I send in copies of photos instead of the original?
We are happy to receive anything you are willing to provide. We would prefer original artifacts, to ensure that a veteran’s original material, including letters, diaries, photographs, military papers and creative works, are preserved for future generations to learn from and appreciate. We recognize the sentimental value of your personal items, and keep them secured in the Eisenhower Presidential Library’s climate-control storage facilities where archivists oversee their preservation and care. Primary source materials are one of the Library’s greatest assets. Researchers visit the library to inspect original items in our collections, and digital surrogates or photocopies do not take their place. However, by having digital copies (i.e. photocopies or scans) or artifacts, we can make them available to view on the website by including them in the veteran’s profile.
Does Ike’s Soldiers accept artifacts and other three-dimensional items?
Yes. If you are concerned that something might be rejected, please contact us at info@ikessoldiers.com with a description of the items and photos. We will review with our archivists and reply back to you as soon as possible.
Can I submit digital (electronic) versions of documents and photos?
Yes. We are happy to receive anything you are willing to provide. We would prefer original artifacts, to ensure that a veteran’s original material, including letters, diaries, photographs, military papers and creative works, are preserved for future generations to learn from and appreciate. We recognize the sentimental value of your personal items, and keep them secured in the Eisenhower Presidential Library’s climate-control storage facilities where archivists oversee their preservation and care. Primary source materials are one of the Library’s greatest assets. Researchers visit the library to inspect original items in our collections, and digital surrogates or photocopies do not take their place. However, by having digital copies (i.e. photocopies or scans) or artifacts, we can make them available to view on the website by including them in the veteran’s profile.
What if the photos were taken on a digital camera and only exist in a digital format?
Items that are “born digital” should be submitted on a CD, DVD or USB (flash/thumb) drive or through our online submission form on www.ikessoldiers.com.
Can I record an interview using the camera or audio apps on my smartphone or tablet?
Yes. Always choose a quiet, indoor location, and test your device before recording. If you are submitting through Ike’s Soldiers student program our guidelines require that you utilize HD equipment. However a student, who does not have access to this equipment may submit a veteran(s) interview(s) utilizing their camera on their smartphone or table through the general program. Questions? Contact us at info@ikessoldiers.com. For iOS Users (iPad, iPhone, iTouch) • Use “Camera” App for video recordings • Set default video format to MOV • Use “Voice Memo” App for audio recordings • Set audio quality to at least 44.1 kHz (16-bit). The 96 kHz (24-bit) setting is ideal. • Use landscape (horizontal) orientation for video recordings • Import recordings through “iTunes” • Submit recordings to VHP on either CD/DVD or USB (thumb/flash) drive. For Android Users • Use “Camera” App for video recordings • Set default video format to 3GP • Use “Voice Recorder” App for audio recordings • Set audio quality to at least 44.1 kHz (16-bit). The 96 kHz (24-bit) setting is ideal. • Use landscape (horizontal) orientation for video recordings • Import recordings through USB Cable • Submit recordings to VHP on either CD/DVD or USB (thumb/flash) drive
Does Ike’s Soldiers require transcripts?
No, Ike’s Soldiers does not require transcripts with your submission, but we do accept them if available. Please submit them as plain text files (.txt or .rtf file formats) on a CD, DVD or USB (flash/thumb) drive. If you are submitting via the student program, you will fill out a document that asks for the main points of the interview for media highlight purposes.

Submitting Materials

How do I submit materials to Ike’s Soldiers?
Please follow the instructions on the Submission page and keep in mind the following: Prior to submitting your collection, make copies of all audio/video recordings and other materials and provide them to all involved individuals, i.e., veteran participant, interviewer, donor/organization and family members. We cannot provide a timeline for when collections will be made accessible on our website, so providing copies to participants ensures immediate access to the full collection. If sending more than one collection, please collate each veteran’s collection and place into an envelope or folder with their name on the outside. Place your item(s) in a box, enclose the required forms (included in the information packet) and ship the collection to the Eisenhower Foundation. Shipping: Use a commercial carrier* (e.g. FedEx, UPS, etc.) so that package can be tracked. Deliver items to:
Eisenhower Foundation
Attn: Ike’s Soldiers
200 SE 4th St
Abilene, KS 67410
Do not pay extra for expedited service. Ground delivery or the least expensive delivery option is sufficient. Be sure to track your package. If you would like to hand-deliver your materials. Please email info@ikessoldiers.com at least 5 business days prior to your arrival. Office hours are: Monday thru Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. CT.
Will Ike’s Soldiers provide courtesy copies of my materials after I submit them?
No. Resources do not permit us to make copies of oral histories in the Ike’s Soldiers collection. Please make copies of all materials for your own records and each involved party before sending materials to Ike’s Soldiers.
Am I allowed to submit my interview to another repository, such as a local historical society?
Yes, if you are the copyright holder to the material, you may submit a duplicate copy to another repository such as a local public library or historical society. However, we request that all originals be sent to us for safe and proper archival of all materials. Your materials will become part of the National Archival system and therefore treated as such forever.
What if I forgot to include something? Can I add to an existing Profile?
Yes. When submitting additional digital materials, you may use the “quick submit” button on the Submit page on the Ike’s Soldiers website. Please be sure to enclose a note instructing Ike’s Soldiers staff to “add to an existing collection.” You should also include the Identification Code (Veterans Last name & date of birth ex: SMITH011030 for John Smith, born Jan 10th 1930) and the original interviewer’s name if you have it. There is no need to complete the Biographical Data or Release forms when submitting additional items to an existing profile. You may also physically mail extra materials to Eisenhower Foundation by using the address provided below and including the Identification Code for the veteran and name of the interviewer (if available).
Eisenhower Foundation
Attn: Ike’s Soldiers
200 SE 4th St
Abilene, KS 67410
What paperwork do you require, and why?
The Eisenhower Foundation and Eisenhower Presidential Library require the following forms in order to clarify how the Library and Ike’s Soldiers can use the collection and facilitate access for researchers. It also guarantees the veterans’ legal copyright to their materials. If the materials are not submitted with the required forms, the materials will be deemed “unable to be utilized.” The Ike’s Soldiers staff will not return collections to the contributor if they do not include the required forms.
a. Biographical Data Form
b. Veteran’s Release Form
c. Interviewer’s Release Form (if enclosing a recorded interview)
d. Audio & Video Recording Log (if enclosing a recorded interview)
e. Material Identification Form (if enclosing any artifacts)
What happens if my submission does not meet the minimum requirements?
If you’re submission does not meet the requirements, we will contact you with the information you have provided on your submission form. If we are unable to contact you or do not receive a reply within 7 days, your submission will be discarded.
How long will it take for my collection to appear online?
Please allow Ike’s Soldiers staff about three months from the date of receipt to fully incorporate collection materials into Ike’s Soldiers permanent collections. After this time, a picture with the veteran’s name and record will appear on the website’s collection, showing that the collection has been processed and added to our collections. It does not mean that the collection has been digitized and available to watch or listen to online. At this time based on current resources, we cannot digitize materials sent to us. Ike’s Soldiers staff will send the veteran an acknowledgement postcard as soon as the contents are processed, no longer than 3 months from the date of receipt. The acknowledgment of receipt verifies that your materials have reached Ike’s Soldiers and are being reviewed for acquisition and processed for posting. Please see “Is there a deadline for submitting materials” for additional information. To inquire about the status of your submission, please visit our website, www.ikessoldiers.com, and search for the veteran’s name. If your submission does not appear, you may email info@ikessoldiers.com.

Research and Access

How are Ike’s Soldiers materials used?
Researchers and the general public will utilize the materials for historical or educational purposes. Ike’s Soldiers plans to also create and execute programs that share the stories of America’s World War II veterans.
How can I access Ike’s Soldiers Interviews?
You can search our website in the “Ike’s Soldiers” tab for the online biographical information and service history record for each veteran(s) of interest. You can also search the database using different criteria, such as name of veteran; name of interviewer; war; branch of service; unit of service (such as battalion, regiment, ship, etc.); and service locations.
What information is made public in the online database?
The veteran’s name, date of birth and service history information, as they appear on the Biographical Data Form are made available via the Ike’s Soldiers online database. The Veterans Home address & e-mail are not made public. If there anything that the veteran wishes to keep private, please make note of it on your form.
Can Ike’s Soldiers profiles be used in publications or in exhibitions outside the Ike’s Soldiers program?
Yes. Please note that all participants retain the copyright to their materials; therefore, researchers must obtain permission from the veteran (or their next of kin) before using the interview or other materials in anything that may generate sales. The release form the veteran signs grants permission for publication, display, & similar usage. Out of courtesy, Ike’s Soldiers and the Eisenhower Foundation would like to know what you’re working on and how you’re planning to utilize the materials. You can contact us at info@ikessoldiers.com. Additionally, we would respectfully request that you list www.ikessoldiers.com as your resource for information.

Student Program

When will I get paid for my submission?
Payments are processed in batches twice a month, on the 1st and the 15th Once your submission has been reviewed and approved to have met the guidelines, we will send you an email notifying you that the check has been sent to the address you’ve designated on the Material Identification Form.