The 1871 Worldwide British Army Index has been compiled using data extracted from the War Office army pay lists held in The National Archives at Kew. As with the 1861 Worldwide Army Index, the primary aim has been to identify the location of men serving in the British Army throughout the world as on census day in 1871 – 2 April 1871. However, the index generally covers much of the April to June Quarter 1871.

The Index contains the details of both officers and men of the Cavalry, Royal Artillery, Royal Engineers, Guards, Infantry and Colonial units serving both in Britain and elsewhere in the British Empire. Each record is a transcript of original source material that will usually include a soldier’s name, service number, rank, unit, the location of their regimental headquarters, any additional notes and The National Archives’ reference.