Dan Mackay, 37, uncovered the hoard of dog tags buried beside an anti-aircraft battery close to London, The Telegraph reported.
He was now working to trace the relatives of the men — believed to have served in nearly every regiment of the Army — many of whom may never have recovered relics from their loved ones killed in action, the report said.
Mackay said the veterans to whom the tags belonged included decorated soldiers including military medal winners, prisoners of war and those who had been written about in military journals and dispatches.
“The excitement was almost unbearable, it was as if someone had lifted the lid on a treasure chest full of silver coins,” he was quoted as saying.
After his requests to help find relatives of the soldiers were rejected by the British Legion and several military historians and magazines, Mackay said he made a breakthrough on the website War Forces Records, which connected him with a surviving veteran, Frederick Henry Bills.
Mackay has already repatriated eight tags to families