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Dispatch Newletter

The WWI Centennial Dispatch is a weekly newsletter that touches the highlights of WWI centennial and the Commission's activities. It is a short and easy way to keep tabs on key happenings. We invite you to subscribe to future issues and to explore the archive of previous issues.

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DISPATCH header 07152019

July 23, 2019

"We are a very high visibility American Legion Post since we are located in Paris, France."

Bryan Schell

Our Commission's recent commemoration efforts in Versailles, France put us in touch with some friends whom we haven't seen in a while -- the members of the world-famous American Legion Post #1 in Paris. These Legion members stand on a long tradition, one that celebrates a direct line to our World War I veterans. Post #1 is the first, and the oldest, American Legion post outside of the United States, and was created by people who had just seen the Great War end months before. Since that time, they have fulfilled a unique and special role in representing our American veterans in France, and throughout Europe. Vice Commander Bryan Schell took some time to tell us about his special post, their history, and their current activities.


World War One Centennial Commission Announces the "A.E.F. Memorial Corps"

A.E.F. Memorial Corps

The U.S. World War One Centennial Commission has announced the “A.E.F. Memorial Corps” (American Expeditionary Forces Memorial Corps) to recognize Veterans, Military, Patriotic, Historical, Service, and Community organizations that raise funds to help build and provide ongoing support for the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC. The A.E.F. Memorial Corps will induct national, state, or local organizations (or any local chapters such as American Legion or VFW posts) which hold fundraisers for the benefit of the national World War I Memorial. Those Legion and VFW Posts which have already made donations to help build the Memorial will be inducted at the organizations' respective national conventions this summer. Click here to find out more about the A.E.F. Memorial Corps, and how your organization can become a member.


4th Annual Camp Doughboy World War I History Weekend this September in NYC

Camp Doughboy 1

The fourth annual Camp Doughboy World War I History Weekend comes to Governors Island National Monument on September 14 and 15. Each day will bring living history, reenactors, authors, experts, vintage vehicles, and animals. This is the largest free public WWI exhibition in the United States. Reenactors representing the Allies and Central Powers—as well as civilians in Edwardian-era attire—are invited living history participants. The centennial of the service members returning to Governors Island is in 2019 and this group of volunteer reenactors will share the story of WWI participants. Click here to learn more about Camp Doughboy 2019, and the planned events and activities in September.


Honors given; marker placed; RIP, Private Ulysses Grant Moore

Ulysses Grant Moore flag presentation

Richard Mize is pastor of Trinity Presbyterian Church in Oklahoma City. Last weekend, he helped give belated honors to Army Private Ulysses Grant Moore, a century after he served in World War I, and 55 years after he died. As Mize writes, "Why such honors were overlooked, and why this marker never made it here to his burial site are unknown." Click here to read the entire story of how 55 years after the fact, "It took a compelling series of discoveries that started by happenstance" to finally deliver to Private Moore the much delayed and much deserved honors from his nation for his service in World War I.


Germany's World War I Debt Was So Crushing It Took 92 Years to Pay Off

German tank being demolished

At the end of World War I, Germans could hardly recognize their country. Up to 3 million Germans, including 15 percent of its men, had been killed. Germany had been forced to become a republic instead of a monarchy, and its citizens were humiliated by their nation’s bitter loss. Even more humiliating were the terms of Germany’s surrender. World War I’s victors blamed Germany for beginning the war, committing horrific atrocities and upending European peace with secretive treaties. But most embarrassing of all was the punitive peace treaty Germany had been forced to sign. The Treaty of Versailles didn’t just blame Germany for the war—it demanded financial restitution for the whole thing, to the tune of 132 billion gold marks, or about $269 billion today. How—and when—could Germany possibly pay its debt? Click here to read more about how the process took 92 years and another World War to be completed.


Fillmore County, WI restores World War I memorial entrance for 100th anniversary

Fillmore County Fairgrounds WWI Memorial Entrance Plaque

"Fillmore County remembers its history," said Nathan Pike, the Olmsted County veteran’s service officer and emcee of last week's celebration of the restoration of the World War I Memorial at the Fillmore County Fairgrounds entrance. The structure was built 100 years ago, erected to honor soldiers returning from World War I. "There were over 1,000 residents of Fillmore County that enlisted or were drafted into service during the first World War," said Pike. "Forty-eight of them were killed in action, and they did not return to Fillmore County." Click here to read more about the restoration project, and how Fillmore County remembers its citizens who served in WWI.


George Dilboy, the first Greek-American who fell in battle during World War I

George Dilboy

In 1918 George Dilboy was killed on a battlefield near Belleau, France after fighting so courageously that he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor, America’s highest medal for bravery. Dilboy was the first Greek-American soldier who fell in the line of duty. The Greek-American’s conspicuous heroism was so outstanding that he was recognized and honored by three US presidents. Woodrow Wilson signed the authorization awarding Dilboy the Medal of Honor, Warren G. Harding brought his remains back to be buried with honors at Arlington National Cemetery, and Calvin Coolidge presided at his final burial there. Click here to read more about the life and heroism of George Dilboy.


Milford celebrates: 100 years ago, WWI ended & the American Legion was born

Ernest F. Oldenburg

The American Legion in Milford, Michigan is celebrating 100 years since the end of World War I and the birth of America’s largest veteran’s organization. The Ernest F. Oldenburg American Legion Post 216 held an open house last weekend. Around 1945, Henry Ford sold the property at 510 W. Commerce Road in Milford to the American Legion with the stipulation that the post be named after his friend Ernest F. Oldenburg, a soldier from the Milford area who served with the 32nd Red Arrow Division and was killed in action in France in 1918. In 1946, the new building opened. Click here to read more about the World War I centennial commemoration activities by American Legion Post 216.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube.  Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

Red Summer Riots

Episode #132
Highlights: Red Summer Riots 1919

100 Years Ago: Red Summer Riots - Dr. Jeffrey Sammons | @02:10

Great War Project: Retrospective - Mike Shuster | @15:15

Introducing the A.E.F. Memorial Corps - Host | @25:15

New Digital Download: "Hello Girls" Single - Host | @27:35

Articles & Posts: Weekly Dispatch - Host | @31:00


Doughboy MIA for week of July 22

Doughboy MIA

This week we bring you something different from Doughboy MIA. 

Many have wanted to know the breakdown of missing; those on land as opposed to those lost or buried at sea (L/BAS), the number of unknowns, etc. Over the last few months we have worked hard at scrutinizing the list and crunching the numbers in order to detail those who were L/BAS, especially as no complete or accurate record of them was ever made available.  So, in answer to the questions that come in, here are the numbers by cemetery and then in totals:

Aisne-Marne Cemetery = Unknown burials - 249 Tablets of the Missing - 1060

Brookwood Cemetery = Unknown burials - 41 Tablets of the Missing - 564 (All on the Tablets are L/BAS.)

Flanders Fields Cemetery = Unknown burials - 21 Tablets of the Missing - 43

Meuse-Argonne Cemetery = Unknown burials - 486 Tablets of the Missing - 954

Oise-Aisne Cemetery = Unknown burials - 601 Tablets of the Missing - 241

Somme Cemetery = Unknown burials - 138 Tablets of the Missing - 333 (Note that one Unknown grave at Somme contains seven sets of remains.)

St. Mihiel Cemetery = Unknown burials - 137 Tablets of the Missing - 284

Suresnes Cemetery = Unknown burials - 6 Tablets of the Missing - 974 (The number of missing are all L/BAS and includes 14 names believed to be L/BAS but for which further research is required.)

Total (Total Missing in Action from the war, no matter the reason) = 4,453

Unknown burials = 1,679

Subtracting the Unknown burials from the MIA's leaves 2,774 unrecovered soldier dead.

Subtracting the L/BAS total of 1,538 from the unrecovered total leaves 1,236 unrecovered soldiers dead that remain out on the battlefields.

Our goal at Doughboy MIA is to make an accounting of all these men. Over the coming years we will be researching each man individually to make a determination as to what happened to him and publishing a report. We have already been able to get several together thanks to the contributions made to our organization, which just goes to show that with your assistance we are making a difference!

Want to help? Come on over to the Doughboy MIA website at www.ww1cc.org/mia and make a tax deductible donation to our non-profit organization. Every dollar you give IS making a difference! And remember:

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Robert J. Laplander
Directing Manager for Doughboy M.I.A.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Mint Coin Set

2018 World War I Centennial Silver Dollar Sets

No longer available from the U.S. Mint!

These Official World War I Centennial Silver Dollar Sets are only available here on the WWI Centennial Commission's online gift shop.

NOTE: Each set comes with 2 separate coins. Each set will accompany the Official Doughboy Design alongside your choice of Military Branch. 

"The United Mint certifies that this coin is a genuine 2018 World War I Centennial Silver Dollar, minted and issued in accordance with legislation passed by Congress and signed by the President on December 16, 2014, as Public Law 113-212. This coin was minted by the Department of the Treasury, United States Mint, to commemorate the centennial of America's involvement in World War I. This coin is legal tender of the United States."

A portion of the proceeds from your purchase will help build the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.



James Edward Coffey

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

 

James Edward Coffey

Submitted by: Donald P. Vincent {Nashua, NH American Legion Post 3}

James Edward Coffey born around 1897. James Coffey served in World War 1 with the United States Army . The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1918.

Story of Service

James Edward Coffey, the first soldier from Nashua, NH to die in battle in World War I, was born on April 22, 1896, to Daniel J. and Catherine (Dillon) Coffey.

He attended Nashua schools and St. Patrick Church, and in June 1917, became one of the first Nashua men to enlist in the Army at the outbreak of the war. He was assigned to Company D, 103rd Infantry, 26th Division, and trained in Concord and Westfield, Mass.

Coffey and his unit, the famous 26th Yankee Division commanded by Maj. Gen. Clarence R. Edwards, deployed overseas in September 1917.

Read James Edward Coffey's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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DISPATCH header 07152019

July 16, 2019

Tompkins County, NY and Cornell University had outsize WWI roles

Edward Tinkham

"What possibly could this rural county have done to contribute to World War I efforts?" While spending time as an intern at the United States World War I Centennial Commission this summer, Cady Hammer decided to answer this very question. While "I never paid much attention to the history of Tompkins County besides what I knew from family stories," said Hammer, she decided to use draft cards from two of her  relatives as a jumping off point. "What I found." says Hammer, "amazed me." Click here to read the entire article about how a search that began on a whim revealed a huge legacy of WWI service in a small county and famous university of New York.


National History Day's New World War I Webinar -- A Scholarship Opportunity! 

National History Day logo

National History Day (NHD) is excited to be offering scholarship for our World War I webinar series in the fall. LEGACIES OF WORLD WAR I, the World War I Webinar series in the fall, is offering free tuition and credit for two teachers from every NHD Affiliate. Through this program, teachers can earn a certificate of professional development hours or three graduate extension credit units from the University of San Diego. Applications for a scholarship will be accepted through July 30, 2019.  Click here to read more about this exciting opportunity for educators nationwide.


Honoring Americans who served in Canadian Forces during World War I

Canadian Cross of Sacrifive at Arlington National Cemetery

It was not until April 1917, that the United States entered the First World War beside the Allied powers against the Central powers. Despite America’s delayed entry into the war, young Americans had gone north of the border to Canada to join the war effort. Canada joined the war in August 1914 as part of the British Empire, and as such, began to mobilize young troops and send them overseas as part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (C.E.F.). U.S. World War I Centennial Commission intern Josh Baker notes that after the war ended, "there needed to be a special way which the Canadian government could thank all those young Americans who fought within Canadian units" during the First World War. Click to read more about how this spirit of gratitude led to the Canadian Cross of Sacrifice at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, DC.


Albany marks Sgt. Henry Johnson Day

Henry Johnson Memorial Albany

City Officials of Albany, NY City observed the third Henry Johnson Day last month. The Day was established to honor World War I hero Sgt. Henry Johnson on the 102nd anniversary of his enlistment. The Albany man was part of the all-black 369th Infantry Regiment and his actions in May 1918 posthumously earned him the Medal of Honor. President Barack Obama bestowed the highest military honor an American soldier can receive on June 2, 2015, in a White House ceremony. The third annual Henry Johnson Award for Distinguished Community Service was awarded at the ceremony. Click here to read more about Sgt Henry Johnson, the day and award named in his honor, and the 2019 recipient of that honor.


Maryland World War I ‘Ghost Fleet’ cemetery now a national sanctuary

Ghost Fleet

An area in Maryland that’s home to abandoned World War I-era steamships has been designated a new national marine sanctuary. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the state of Maryland and Charles County announced the Mallows Bay-Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary on Monday. It contains more than 100 abandoned steamships and vessels that were built as part of the nation’s engagement in World War I. Mallows Bay is known for its “Ghost Fleet,” including partly submerged remains of more than 100 wooden steamships that were built in response to threats from World War I-era German U-boats. Click here to read more about the "Ghost Fleet" from World War I, and the process that is underway to finalize the NOAA designation.


PA teacher creates curriculum in Versailles for treaty’s 100th anniversary

Megan Kopp

Megan Kopp, a Milton Hershey High School Social Studies in Hershey, PA was one of just a handful of teachers chosen out of hundreds to travel to France through a program by National History Day (NHD). They celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Treaty of Versailles, and each teacher developed a new lesson plan to be used by teachers across the country. The lesson plan will be published by National History Day in the fall. The NHD program is sponsored by the United States World War I Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum and Library.  Click here to read more about Kopp's passion for history, and her family history of military service, including her own, and watch video from a local TV station.


Michigan Military Heritage Museum to open special exhibit on the women who served in World War I

Nellie Dingley

To remember the courage and sacrifice of the exceptional American women who served in World War I, the Michigan Military Heritage Museum, which has a unique collection of WWI Women artifacts, will be presenting a special WWI Women display at its "2019 World War One Day" event on August 10, 2019. The display will feature stories of women like Nellie M. Dingley (left), who joined the U.S. Army Nurse Corps and volunteered to serve in France with the New York Roosevelt Hospital's Mobile Operating Unit.  Click here to read more about Nellie Dingley and the August event at the Michigan Military Heritage Museum.


New Podcast Series Focused on the World War I Paris Peace Process from University College London

UCL logo

University College London (UCL) Institute of Education, friend and partner to the World War I Centennial Commission, has a remarkable new WWI-themed podcast series that is worth checking out. Working with Chrome Radio, Sir Hew Strachan, Simon Bendry and Catriona OliphantI have begun work on a "Peacemaking in Paris" podcast series, in which Hew Strachan reflects on the Paris Peace Conference of 1919 and its legacy. Click here to read more about this new WWI podcast, and find out where you can download the episodes.


Memorial honors Palouse, Idaho soldier lost to war a century past

Lester Dean Hayton Park Sign Palouse, ID

It has been more than a century since the city of Palouse received word that it had lost one of its sons to the world’s first truly global war. Lester Dean Hayton moved to Palouse with his family in 1913, when he was 21. Six years later, Hayton’s family would receive word that he had gone missing in action following the Battle of Chateau-Thierry during World War I, and was presumed dead. On the 100-year anniversary of the notice, Palouse resident Brad Pearce led a memorial on July 15 for the man at the city’s Hayton-Greene Park beneath an iron archway that bears Hayton’s name and that of another of the small town’s fallen — Cpl. William Greene. Click here to read more about this centennial ceremony, why it was important to the community, and plans for future commemorations of the fallen.


Wisconsin teacher honors local World War I veteran during 100th anniversary

Joseph Nowinski

Joseph Nowinski, a social studies teacher at Almond-Bancroft school in Portage County, Wisconsin, was one of 18 teachers nationwide selected to research and deliver a eulogy of a fallen hero in France during the 100th commemoration of World War I this June. That hero was Sylvester Machinski who was born in Wisconsin and fought in World War I. To this day relatives of this hero still live in Portage County. Nowinski was participating in Memorializing the Fallen, a teacher professional development program from National History Day and sponsored by the United States World War I Centennial Commission. Click here to read more about Nowinski's discovery of a hometown hero, and watch video from the local TV station.


Hot Springs Village, Arkansas History Club hears World War I personal story

Edward C. Boehmke

Hot Springs Village resident Dan Boehmke gave a detailed, fascinating presentation about his father’s World War I service, taken from personal letters and other research. His father, Edward C. Boehmke (left), served in a Wisconsin National Guard unit that eventually was sent to Europe in 1918. Edward boarded the SS Tuscania for the trip overseas Jan. 28, 1918. As it neared the Scottish coast, the ship was torpedoed, and 260 troops lost their lives--but Edward survived, albeit losing in the sinking "everything he had with him except for a comb." Click here to read more about about a son's presentation, taken from his father's letters and artifacts, and how that research turned into a book about the family's WWI near miss.


“The instruments of Destiny”: Reception of Iliad in American Great War Poetry

Claire Davis

Claire Davis(left) is a graduate student at the University of Arizona, where she is pursuing her PhD in English literature. Long intrigued by classical reception and Modernism, she conducted research in the Iliad and World War I poetry at her alma mater, Samford University, and presented this research at the 2019 Classical Association of the Midwest and South Conference, and at the Howard Scholars Undergraduate Research fair at Samford. Click here to read her thoughtful essay “The instruments of Destiny: Reception of Iliad in American Great War Poetry," and learn why she concludes that "a close reading of American war poetry before and during the First World War reveals that poets and their audience also found meaning and representation in the classical tradition in works such as the Iliad."


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New - Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

Sabin Howard with full scale armature for memorial sculpture

Episode #131
Highlights: Monumental Scale!

Host - Theo Mayer

100 Years Ago: Let Me Count The Ways - host | @02:15

A Century In The Making - Sabin Howard | @14:40

Education: NHD WWI History Award Winner - Tim Proskauer | @25:25

Articles & Posts: Weekly Dispatch - Host | @37:45


Doughboy MIA for week of July 15

Robert McClain

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday's MIA this week is Private Robert McClain. Born in Rome Georgia in 1898, Robert John McClain enlisted in the Georgia National Guard on 16 July, 1917 at Atlanta and was assigned to Company A, 5th Infantry, GNG, whose duty station was Camp Wheeler, at Macon, Georgia. The year before, this unit had been federalized for duty on the Mexican Border as Company A, 122nd Infantry. Following the declaration of war in 1917, the 122nd had been assigned duty to the 31st ‘Dixie Division’, which would go overseas as a replacement division in September, 1918.

By that time however, Private McClain had already sailed for France aboard the troopship Orduna on 20 June, 1918 as a member of Company #5, Camp Wheeler June Automatic Replacement Draft, which had been drawn from Camp Wheeler trainees. Ten days later he was ‘Over There’, and a week after that, having received some machine gun training while with the 122nd, McClain was assigned to Company B, 150th Machine Gun Battalion, 42nd ‘Rainbow’ Division. He was with them but a short time when, on 28 July, 1918, he was killed in action, having been in France less than a month.

Private McClain is memorialized on the Tablets to the Missing at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery at Belleau Wood. Nothing else is known about his case at this time.

Want to help shed some light on Private McClain’s case? Consider making a donation to Doughboy MIA and help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Mug

White Ceramic Doughboy Mug

Featuring the iconic Doughboy silhouette flanked by barbed wire so prevalent during WWI, you can enjoy your favorite beverage in this 15-ounce ceramic mug and honor the sacrifices made by U.S. soldiers.  

On December 19, 2014, Congress passed legislation designating Pershing Park in the District of Columbia as the national World War One Memorial.  A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this item are designated for building the Memorial

A Certificate of Authenticity as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial is included.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.



Raymond J. Bobbin

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

 

Raymond J Bobbin

Submitted by: John Bobbin {Grandson}

Raymond J Bobbin born around 1897. Raymond Bobbin served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1919.

Story of Service

 

A significant centennial in our human history is upon us. In the second decade of the twentieth century, war on the Western Front in Europe had been sputtering and dragging along through an agonizing and bloody stalemate for several years. In 1918 when the fighting elements of the American Expeditionary Forces began to meaningfully supplement the efforts of the European Allied nations, momentum began to shift in opposition against Germany and its partner nations of the Central Powers.

In a description of one memorable moment while serving in Europe with Battery A of the 107th Field Artillery, 28th Division, Pennsylvania National Guard, one veteran soldier wrote late in his life, before his death in 1981, in scribbly and barely legible handwriting, that he "saw and felt more war on that one day, 10-30-18, than the other 3 months that we on the front [sic] (Aug. 13 - Nov. 11) R."

At that time, one hundred years ago, young Americans, likely many of whom had previously experienced geography extending no further, perhaps, than the environs of their American hometowns, farmlands, schools, shops and factories, shipped out across an unthinkable expanse of ocean. Many were going to the old countries of their immigrant forebears, to undertake an unimaginable challenge. It was a voyage from which many would not return. One among the fortunate who did return was Raymond Bobbin from Shenandoah, Pennsylvania. He reached his twenty-first year of age during his time serving in Europe.

Read Raymond J Bobbin's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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July 9, 2019

DAR donation

Community Project Leads to National WWI Memorial Donation from Lucinda Hinsdale Stone Chapter of the DAR 

The effort to build the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC has brought partners from many different parts of the country, and from many different groups of people. The stories they bring are extraordinary -- their personal/historic ties to World War I, their belief in remembering our veterans, their commitment to giving the lessons to future generations. Among the most extraordinary stories of support comes from Kalamazoo County, Michigan -- specifically from the Lucinda Hinsdale Stone Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Their members created a special project to mark the centennial of the end of World War I. As part of that project, they included a fundraiser aimed at helping build the memorial in the nation's capital. We had the opportunity to speak to Elizabeth Kraatz, Vice Regent of the Lucinda Hinsdale Stone Chapter, to hear the full story.

If your historical, patriotic, or community organization is interested in doing a fundraising project to support building the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC, while at the same time raising funds for your group's own activities, take a look at the Commission's WWI Poppy Seed Program here.


Iowa Middle School teacher visits WWI sites in France via National History Day

Ann Jackson

Iowa teacher Ann Jackson landed in France recently for a history-filled trip to explore World War I sites as part of Memorializing the Fallen, a National History Day program sponsored by the US World War I Centennial Commission, and supported by Commission Founding Sponsor The Pritzker Military Museum and Library. The program included 16 other U.S. teachers. Jackson was chosen out of 334 applicants to take the trip. Along with American cemeteries, the group also checked out German war trenches, chapels, monuments and more. Click here to read the entire interview with Jackson, who discusses seeing the areas directly impacted by World War I, and thinking about how decisions made 100 years ago have shaped future events.


Professors dig through history to prove WWI hero deserves a Medal of Honor

William Butler

Sgt. William Butler served with the renowned all-black 369th Infantry Regiment during World War I. His heroism made headlines after he rescued five Americans who had been taken prisoner, while killing at least five Germans. The 369th got a parade on their return, and Butler received the Distinguished Service Cross and France's highest military honor, but not the U.S. Medal of Honor. In a CBS TV News interview, Professor Jeffrey Sammons of New York University said that's largely because of a concerted and well-documented effort by senior white officers to denigrate the performance of black soldiers. Sammons has joined forces with professor Timothy Westcott of Park University in Missouri as part of the World War I Valor Medals Review initiative to right what many see as a terrible wrong. Click here to read the entire CBS interview, and watch video to learn more about the Valor Medals Review.


"Number, please?" 'Hello Girls' answered the call in World War I

Grace Banker

Grace Banker of Passaic, NJ served in some very high places during World War I. For 20 months, she lived like a soldier at a time when the Army didn't allow women in the ranks. She wore a U.S. Army uniform with three stripes on her sleeve and carried a helmet and a gas mask to the front lines in France. And like any soldier, Banker had to keep her cool under fire, working the switchboard at Gen. John Pershing's headquarters amid the thunder of artillery shelling. After the war, Banker eventually moved to New York state, never to return. Recently her granddaughter came to Passaic to see the house where Banker grew up. Click here to read the interview with Banker's granddaughter, and learn more about efforts to recognize the contributions made by the Hello Girls to the U.S. war effort a century ago.


Austin World War I exhibit shows how U.S. peace turned to near anarchy

Austin WWI exhibit

The United States entered the European showdown of doomed empires late but with enormous impact, especially back at home, as a densely organized and visually sharp exhibit, “WWI America,” argues at the Bullock Texas State History Museum. The exhibit runs through Aug. 11. This exhibit, which originated with the highly regarded Minnesota Historical Society in St. Paul, Minn., includes a fair share of personal stories, such as ones about “doughboys” like Charles Whittlesey, part of a “Lost Brigade” caught behind German lines, and José de la Luz Saenz, who fought for democracy in France and against racial segregation in the U.S. Click here to read more about the Texas exhibit, and see more photos from the museum.


"Students often discover WWI to be far more interesting than they expected."

Reston VA school exhibit

A major reason why the US World War I Centennial Commission does what it does is to ensure the stories, and the lessons, of World War I are given to our coming generations. So, last month, we were delighted to hear from Mr. Hugh Gardner, and Ms. Lachlan Dodge, who work with the IdeaVisions Academy in Reston, Virginia. There, they helped their high school level students to create and carry out a World War I research project that took place over this entire school year. We wanted to hear more, and sent them a number of questions about the project -- and they asked students Daniel Heintz and Nolan Powers to be the spokespersons for the effort.  Click here to read the responses from the students, and learn more about their ambitious educational undertaking.


Camp Sherman versus the Mound City Earthworks in Ohio

Soldiers on mound at Camp Sherman

The Scioto Valley in South Central Ohio is home to numerous important Pre-Contact American Indian earthworks. The visible heritage of Ohio's Pre-Contact American Indians are the mounds and earthworks that dot the landscape in Southern Ohio. One of the most important Pre-Contact earthworks is the Mound City Earthworks, part of the Hopewell Cultural National Historical Park near Chillicothe, Ohio. One hundred years ago, the Mound City Earthworks were partially destroyed by Camp Sherman, a World War I cantonment. Click here to read the entire article by Paul LaRue of the Ohio WWI Centennial Committee, and learn more about the conflict between war preparation and historical preservation during World War I.


369th Experience Band ties HBCU musicians to WWI Black history

369th during Fleet Week

Leonard E. Colvin of  the Philadelphia Tribune newspaper put the spotlight on the 369th Experience this week via their close connection to the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the United States. Cohen noted that "In 1919 when the Treaty of Versailles ended World War I, two years after the U.S. entered the fight with France and Great Britain against Germany, 44 Black colleges existed. Today, 100 years later, there are 101 public and private HBCUs, and they and their students are playing an important part in reclaiming the role African-American troops and artists played in that conflict." Click here to read the entire article on the Philadelphia Tribune newspaper web site.


Learning the wrong lessons from WWI?

Gabriel Glickman

Gabriel Glickman is an adjunct professor of history and is currently writing a world history book provisionally titled, “The Rise and Fall of World History: Avoiding Historical Amnesia in 21st Century Classrooms.” Writing an OpEd in the Washington Post recently, Glickman posits that America and the world may, during the centennial of the end of World War I, be getting the wrong answers to the key question about WWI: "What lessons can we learn from it to stop future localized crises from spinning out of control?" Click here to read Glickman's entire thoughtful essay reflecting "on the cause of a war that sucked in established and aspiring powers alike during a time of peace."


From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

Ike's Big Road Trip

Ike during 1919 convoy

In July 5th's edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 129, host Theo Mayer recalls a big story from 1919, as a young 28-year-old Lieutenant Colonel named Dwight David Eisenhower joins a convoy of military vehicles on a test trek from Washington, DC to San Francisco, California - not in a matter of days, but over the course of more than two months. Eisenhower, who  volunteered to accompany the convoy as an observer for his tank division, takes away some big lessons that still share our transportation infrastructure and traveling habits today. Click here to read the entire story of the Cross National convoy of 1919, including how young Dwight Eisenhower even pulled a rabbit of of his hat along the way.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New - Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

Truck stuck in the mud during Ike's Big Road Trip

Episode #130
Highlights:
Ike's Big Road Trip

Host - Theo Mayer

100 Years Ago This Week: Ike’s Big Road Trip -
Host |@ 01:50

Remembering Veterans: Veterans History Project - Col Karen Lloyd USA (ret.) |@ 11:15

Spotlight On the media: Ernst Jünger Documentary - Elsa Minisini |@ 22:20

Articles & Posts - Weekly Dispatch - Host |@ 33:55


Doughboy MIA for week of July 8

Richard Parks

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday's MIA this week is Supply Sergeant Richard Parks. Enlisting at 19 at Columbus Barracks, Ohio on 11 September, 1916, Richard A. Parks was the only child of Thomas C. and Clara B. Parks of Ellijay, Georgia. Assigned to Company L, 9th Infantry, he served on the Border with them before going overseas on 18 September, 1917, as a Supply Sergeant. Part of the 2nd Division, the 9th saw considerable action in France, including at Belleau Wood. As a Supply Sergeant, Parks’ job was an extremely important one, making sure that the needs of the troops on the front line were met. He couldn’t fail. Lives were on the line. The 2nd Division launched an attack in the Soissons sector on 18 July, 1918, with the aim of eliminating a German salient aimed straight for Paris. It was on this first day of the attack that while on a supply mission forward, Sergeant Parks was severely wounded in action. He later died of his wounds and it appears that his battlefield grave was never located. Very little else about this case is known at this time.

Want to help shed some light on Sergeant Parks’ case? Consider making a donation to Doughboy MIA and help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Bundle

World War I Collector's Bundle!

Collect all commemorative coins and lapel pins in one purchase!

  • Coins: Each piece is die-struck, bronze alloy, with nice gravity (unlike cheaper zinc coins)
  • Enamel inlay provides premium detailing and finish
  • Each coin and pin comes with its own commemorative packaging, adding value and gifting appeal.

This collection includes a WWI Centennial Coin, Centennial Lapel Pin, Bells of Peace Commemorative Coin, Bells of Peace Commemorative Lapel Pin, and U.S. Victory Lapel Pin.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.  A Certificate of Authenticity as Official Merchandise of the Uni



Jurian (Jerry) J. Dykstra

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

 

Jurian (Jerry) Dykstra

Submitted by: Janna Dykstra Smith {granddaughter}

Jurian (Jerry) J. Dykstra was born around 1896, Jurian (Jerry) Dykstra served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1918 and the service was completed in 1918.

Story of Service

Jurian (Jerry Joe) Dykstra, a son of Dutch immigrants, was inducted into the U.S. Army at the age of 21 on July 26, 1918, in Orange City, Iowa. He left the farm, near Middleburg (Sioux County), using an old cardboard suitcase and travelled to the newly built Camp Pike, north of Little Rock, Arkansas. His military training consisted mostly of close order drill.

He corresponded with Cynthia Meerdink, a young girl from Hull, Iowa, whose own brother, Henry, was already in France. Jerry’s October 6th letter from Camp Pike was written 36 days before the Armistice. It was a “lonesome Sunday” and he was sitting outside with a number of other letter writers. “Someone is shaking the table.” He finished the letter inside “with my tablet on my knee for table.” Jerry compliments Cynthia on a photograph that she has sent him, “That is surely a handy picture you sent me as it is very handy to carry around this way.”

Read Jurian (Jerry) J. Dykstra's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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July 2, 2019

"It is not only one generation who may forget its history, it is an entire society."

John Heckman

The world of World War I historians has no voice more unique than John Heckman. Also known as the Tattooed Historian, John has had long experience with teaching, and creating Living History impressions for other genres, including the Civil War, before he started to really devote his maximum efforts to World War I. John is very active online, hosting a successful Podcast series, Twitter, and Facebook social media accounts. John's take on history is very fresh -- he brings modern sensibility, personal viewpoint, and soldier-level context, to his interpretation of historical topics. John has also been a great friend and partner to the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission, participating in several of our key events, including parades, commemorations, and the design rollout of the National World War I Memorial in Washington DC. Click here to read this thoughtful interview with a one-of-a-kind historian.


The New York Times: Was the Treaty of Versailles a Victory for Democracy?

Woodrow Wilson at Versailles

Ted Widmer, a distinguished lecturer at the Macaulay Honors College of the City University of New York, took to the pages of the New York Times last Friday to explore the centennial of the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, and how President Woodrow Wilson's belief in his own righteousness undermined his vision for world peace via the treaty.  Click here to read Widmer's in-depth look at the critical events of 100 years ago.


Arkansas Great War Letters Project: "Reading such letters makes the events of the past real."

Michael Polson

Michael Polston has a remarkable story to tell. Curator of a history museum in Central Arkansas, he saw a rare opportunity to do something unique to mark the World War I Centennial period, something that would be immediate, accessible, relevant, and that would have value that would last long into the future. This project was a "Letters" project, what the Arkansas Historical Association called it “one of the most valuable of the efforts marking the centennial.” Michael's journey to success with the project is quite unique, and he took some time to tell us about it.


How WWI transformed economic warfare

Blockade

Though World War I officially ended 100 years ago with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, in its overwhelming influence on economic sanctions since 1919, the Allied blockade never really stopped. While it’s the narratives of destruction and change, from the bloodbath of the Somme to the triumph of Vladimir Lenin in Russia, that have captured the public imagination about the war, the way the war transformed economic warfare should also be seen as one of its central legacies, one that continues to shape international relations today. Click here to read the analysis by Phillip Dehne, professor of history at St. Joseph’s College, N.Y., in the Washington Post.


A country poet and World War I soldier

Ben Clifford

Vermont writer Sharon Lakey remembers "a story in North Danville that has held a warm spot in my heart for many years. Ben Clifford, an old country poet, walked the back roads of North Danville and left his handwritten poems in neighbors’ mailboxes." But preparations for the upcoming July 4th celebration in North Danville brought to light some undiscovered writings by Clifford on World War I. Click here to read more about how "Ben gives us an inkling of the reality of that war, a stark memory that stayed with him for the rest of his life."


Historian's 10-year quest for WWI New York soldier’s grave ends in success

Terry Kratwurst

We previously chronicled in DISPATCH the story of Terry Krautwurst, who devoted 10 years of his life documenting the men and women of Genesee County, New York who served in World War I. But there has been a nagging loose end to the amazing historical project, one that Kratwurst had almost given up on solving. Click here to read the remarkable story about how a last-resort request uncovered the missing piece of the the puzzle that enabled Kratwurst to put the "Mission: Accomplished" label on his World War I historical project in 2019.


Minnesota family donates WWI-era artifacts to county museum

Kenneth S. McKay.

Those who serve in war have a tendency to not talk much about that experience. If they do, it is typically much later in life. That was the case with Kenneth S. McKay, who served his country in World War I as a member of Company L, the Redwood Falls, Minnesota National Guard Unit.  Click here to read the entire story of how a bequest from one part of the McKay family to another brought a collection of items from Kenneth's time in the service to rest in the local museum, where their century-old story can now finally be told.


From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

Spotlight on the Media:
An Interview with WWrite Blog Curator Dr. Jennifer Orth-Veillon

Dr. Jennifer Orth-Veillon

In June 28th's edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 129, host Theo Mayer interviewed Dr. Jennifer Orth-Veillon. Dr. Orth-Veillon is a writer, researcher, and war literature expert who has curated the Commission's WWrite blog for the past several years. The blog is self-described as exploring WWI's influence on contemporary writing and scholarship and has earned a loyal following of over 30,000 avid readers. Click here to find out how WWrite came to be, and to learn more about how World War I changed writing and literature forever.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New - Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

4th of July 1919

Episode# 129
4th of July, 1919

Host - Theo Mayer

4th of July, 1919 -
Host |@ 02:05

Extra Extra: The Treaty is signed - Mike Shuster |@ 08:40

The WWrite Blog -
Dr. Jennifer Orth-Veillon |@ 14:00

Bladensburg Peace Cross -
Host |@ 25:50

Articles & Posts -
Host |@ 31:15


Doughboy MIA for week of July 1

Robert McClain

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday's MIA this week is Private Robert McClain. Born in Rome Georgia in 1898, Robert John McClain enlisted in the Georgia National Guard on 16 July, 1917 at Atlanta and was assigned to Company A, 5th Infantry, GNG, whose duty station was Camp Wheeler, at Macon, Georgia. The year before, this unit had been federalized for duty on the Mexican Border as Company A, 122nd Infantry. Following the declaration of war in 1917, the 122nd had been assigned duty to the 31st ‘Dixie Division’, which would go overseas as a replacement division in September, 1918.

By that time however, Private McClain had already sailed for France aboard the troopship Orduna on 20 June, 1918 as a member of Company #5, Camp Wheeler June Automatic Replacement Draft, which had been drawn from Camp Wheeler trainees. Ten days later he was ‘Over There’, and a week after that, having received some machine gun training while with the 122nd, McClain was assigned to Company B, 150th Machine Gun Battalion, 42nd ‘Rainbow’ Division. He was with them but a short time when, on 28 July, 1918, he was killed in action, having been in France less than a month.

Private McClain is memorialized on the Tablets to the Missing at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery at Belleau Wood. Nothing else is known about his case at this time.

Want to help shed some light on Private McClain’s case? Consider making a donation to Doughboy MIA and help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Black Pique Polo Shirt

Navy Blue Doughboy Polo Shirt

Perfect for summer! Inspired by the iconic image of an American Doughboy, you can wear your American pride with this Made in the USA polo shirt. An informal term for a member of the U.S. Army or Marine Corps, “Doughboy” is especially used to refer to the American Expeditionary Forces in World War One. Largely comprised of young men who had dropped out of school to join the army, this poignant lone silhouette of a soldier in trench warfare serves as a reminder of those who sacrificed so much one century ago. Shirt features: Navy with white Doughboy embroidery. 100% combed cotton pique, 6.2 oz. pre-shrunk fabric. Shirt has 3 wood-tone buttons, and side seam design for shape retention. Mens’ sizes available S – 2XL. Proceeds from the sale of this item will help to fund the building of the national World War One Memorial in Washington, D.C.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial. A Certificate of Authenticity is included.



George William Schreader

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

 

george-william-schreader

 

Submitted by: George F. Schreader {Grand Nephew}

George William Schreader was born around 1894. George Schreader served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1916 and the service was completed in 1919.

Story of Service

Official U.S. Army portrait of First Sergeant George William Schreader, 28th Infantry Division, 103rd Engineer Regiment. Photograph was probably taken in France in early 1919 during the period of occupation following the Armistice.

George William Schreader served with the U.S. Army in WWI beginning with his enlistment in the Pennsylvania National Guard in 1916, continuing through the war in France with Pennsylvania’s 28th Infantry Division in 1918, and into the post-war occupation in 1919 before returning to America for discharge.

The story of my great uncle, George William Schreader, has been recounted in a book entitled, “Sergeant Doughboy – Journal of a WWI American Soldier” by G. F. Schreader. I published this book in 2015, which was my second book in a three-part series that chronicles the military connection of four successive generations of men in the Schreader family, all named George. I am the fourth George in the family. I came to write this series of books as a result of merely attempting to record some family military history beginning with the post-Civil War era (my great-grandfather), through both World Wars (my great-uncle and my father), and through the Vietnam War, in which I served.

Read George William Schreader's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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June 25, 2019

Treaty of Versailles Centennial event in France will benefit construction of new U.S. National World War I Memorial

Versailles treaty signing

On June 28th, in honor of the Centennial Anniversary of the Treaty of Versailles, a day of remembrance, commemoration, and education, will take place in Versailles, France. The first of The Paris Peace Treaties, this treaty officially ended the state of war between the European Allied Nations and Germany. Presenting Sponsor, the Pritzker Military Museum & Library, along with National WWI Museum and Memorial, and the Doughboy Foundation, will support the activities hosted by the legendary Palace of Versailles. Click here to read more about the Treaty of Versailles Centennial commemorations, and how proceeds from one event will benefit the construction of the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC.


"I truly cared about those who served and wanted to make that known."

Aiden Coleman

Eagle Scout Service Projects are supposed to be challenging, but Aiden Coleman was more ambitious than most. His project: erect a World War I memorial in his Indiana hometown to honor those locals who served in the Great War. Aiden notes that "My troop leaders weren't so enthusiastic, I think they thought it might be 'too ambitious.' And in some ways they were correct."  But Aiden overcame the challenges of researching the local WWI veterans, and raising the needed funds, and the new Memorial was dedicated on Armistice Day 2018.  Click here to read the whole story of an Eagle Scout's project that aimed high because "I wanted to do something more meaningful. I knew that I wanted to do something based around World War I."


National WWI Museum & Memorial offers exclusive video and images to mark Centennial of 1919 Inter-Allied Games

Inter-Allied Games

The scheduled Olympics in 1916 were canceled due to World War I. While the Olympics resumed in 1920, a seminal event featuring renowned athletes from across the world took place in 1919 in the aftermath of the first truly global conflict in human history. Held from June 22 – July 6, 1919 outside of Paris near the site of the 1900 Olympics, the Inter-Allied Games featured hundreds of male athletes from nations across the world aligned with the Allies during World War I competing in 13 sports. During the course of the completion, more than 500,000 spectators witnessed some of the globe’s best athletes – past, present and future. Click here to read more about how the Inter-Allied Games came about, and how the games "served as a vehicle for healing the wounds from the most catastrophic war to that time in human history.”


UK service marks 100 years since Scapa Flow navy scuttling after World War I

SCapa Flow service

A poignant service was held in Scotland to commemorate the centenary of the scuttling of the German High Seas Fleet in Scapa Flow in 1919. More than 50 German ships were sunk in the waters off Orkney to prevent them becoming spoils of war on 21 June 1919. A service was held above the sunken wreck of the warship Dresden. During the service a bell recovered from the wreck of the Von der Tann was rung by the grandson of German commander Admiral Ludwig von Reuter. Click here to read more about the scuttling 100 years ago, and the joint UK/German commemoration events.


Court Rules Bladensburg WWI Peace Cross Can Stand On Public Land

Bladensburg Peace Cross

The United States Supreme Court ruled last Thursday that a gigantic Latin cross on government land in Bladensburg, Maryland, does not have to be moved or altered in the name of church-state separation. The justices reasoned that the 40-foot cross was erected nearly a century ago as a World War I memorial, not an endorsement of Christianity.  Conceived in 1919 by bereaved mothers of the fallen and completed by the American Legion six years later, the war memorial has become part of the Bladensburg town landscape. Click here to read more about the Supreme Court's ruling, and the possible effects on other WWI memorials with religious symbolism.


Vandals spray-paint WWI Memorial in KC

KC memorial wall vandalism

Police are looking for two people who vandalized the Dedication Wall of the National WWI Museum and Memorial in Kansas City early Tuesday, June 18. The vandals struck about 1 a.m. at the Liberty Memorial, when two people were seen spray-painting  the words “Glory to the fallen martyrs . . .” before running away. The graffiti appears to reference the June 1986 prison revolts in Peru where 250 inmates died. The Dedication Wall holds the bronze busts of the five Allied leaders — Gen. Baron Jacques of Belgium, Gen. Armando Diaz of Italy, Marshal Ferdinand Foch of France, Gen. John J. Pershing of the United States, and Sir Admiral Earl David Beatty of Great Britain — present during the site dedication on Nov. 1, 1921. Click here to read more about the vandalism, and efforts to apprehend the perpetrators.


The story of Eva Crowell

Eva Crowell

When Mary Fritts noticed three log-shaped monuments in Lyons, Nebraska with "World War I" and the same last name--Crowell--on each of them, she took a closer look. "One inscription read Eva Crowell, WWI nurse. Being the only woman from Lyons to serve in WWI, I wanted to learn her story," Fitts recounted. Click here to read more about Fritts' research, and how Eva Crowell came to be added to the new Lyons Veterans Plaza memorial.


From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

Making Peace: Harder Than Making War? A Roundtable Discussion

Versailles headlines

In June 21st's edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 128, host Theo Mayer put together a special edition of World War I Centennial News: an expert panel of historians and subject matter experts for a lively discussion of the complicated and consequential peace process that followed the war. The participants come from three countries and have different academic, literary, and professional credentials. Click here for a fascinating look at an extraordinary time in world history, as told by the people who study it.

Education:
Toolkits for WWI Educators with
Dr. Jennifer Zoebelein

Dr. Jennifer Zoebelein

In June 7th's edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 126, host Theo Mayer interviewed historian Dr. Jennifer Zoebelein from the National World War I Museum and Memorial. Zoebelein, who's a special projects historian at the Museum, recently took on directing a Commission project to create a series of World War I focused Educators' Toolkits, generally sponsored by the Andrew Mellon Foundation. Click here to learn more about Zoebelei, and her new project to create a series of toolkitson topics that address various social issues related to World War I.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New - Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

Signing the Versailles Peace Treaty

Episode #128
Special Edition

Making Peace!
Harder Than Making War?

Host - Theo Mayer

This special edition is dedicated to exploring the Paris Peace Negotiations and the resulting Treaty of Versailles. For our exploration, we are joined by an extraordinary panel of guests including:

  • Military Historian, Sir Hew Strachan
  • Professor of International History, Margaret MacMillan
  • Woodrow Wilson Biographer, Professor Patricia O’Toole
  • American History Author, Garrett Peck
  • Citizen Historian and Artist, Katherine Akey
  • Former NPR Correspondent and WWI blogger, Mike
         Shuster

Literature in WWI This Week

Wwrite Blog Logo

Final Post!

WWI Literature and Authority - Readers With a Vision of Peace

By Phil Klay

"Froth-corrupted lungs," "a ballet," "lies," "the most wonderful war in the world." These terms present the diverse ways writers have described WWI in literature. But which is the most accurate when it comes to relating the real experience of war? Who has the authority to tell the real story?

These are the questions National Book Award Winner, Phil Klay, contemplates as he surveys various literary works on WWI, written by soldiers, officers, nurses, writers, and intellectuals. In WWrite's closing post, Klay also provides insight into the ways reading and writing WWI have shaped contemporary thought on war's impact on culture.

Read "WWI Literature and Authority - Readers With a Vision of Peace" this week!

Behind Their Lines

behind their lines

The night of May 16, 1916, Lieut. Ewart A. Mackintosh's actions earned him the Military Cross for conspicuous gallantry, as he attempted to rescue two of his seriously wounded men, injured in a raid on German trenches.

Read here one of the most poignant poems of the Great War, Mackintosh's "In Memoriam" written for Private David Sutherland and others who died that night.


Doughboy MIA for week of June 24

James O. Crooks

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday's MIA this week is is Private First Class James Crooks. Enlisting at Fort McPherson, Georgia, on 23 May, 1917, James O. Crooks was originally born in Seneca, South Carolina in 1894, the son of James E. and Alice Crooks. James junior was one of 11(!) children of this farming family. Assigned to Company K, 47th Infantry for training, he was transferred to Company K, 9th Infantry in August, 1917, when he was also promoted to Private First Class. The 9th was part of the 2nd Division and it was with them he went to France in September, 1917. By 18 July, 1918 PFC Crooks had seen considerable combat when he was killed in action at Soissons. He is memorialized on the Tablets to the Missing at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery at Belleau Wood. Nothing else is known about his case at this time.

Want to help shed some light on PFC Crooks’ case? Consider making a donation to Doughboy MIA and help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Lest We Forget jacket

 

"Lest We Forget: The Great War"

World War I Prints from the Pritzker Military Museum & Library 

As the United States commemorates the centennial of World War I, one of the nation’s premier military history institutions pays tribute to the Americans who served and the allies they fought beside to defeat a resourceful enemy with a lavishly illustrated book.  It is an official product of the United States World War One Centennial Commission. The story of WWI is told through the memorable art it spawned―including posters from nations involved in the conflict―and a taut narrative account of the war’s signal events, its major personalities and its tragic consequences; and the timely period photographs that illustrate the awful realities of this revolutionary conflict. Most importantly, this book is a tribute to those who served in the Army, Navy, Marine Corps and what would become the Air Force. Proceeds from the sale of this book help fund the WW1 Memorial in Washington, DC. 

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.



Marshall Dunnaville, Sr.

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

 

Marshall Dunnaville, Sr.

Submitted by: Wilhelmina Leigh {granddaughter}

Marshall Dunnaville, Sr. was born around 1888. Marshall Dunnaville served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1918 and the service was completed in 1919.

Story of Service

I never met my grandfather, Marshall Edward Dunnaville; he died before I was born. I have a few photographs of him, but none of him in his military uniform. The paper trail left from his World War I service indicates that he enlisted in the U.S. Army on August 1, 1918, in Roanoke, VA. He was a Private in Company D of the 807th Pioneer Infantry, a unit comprised of African-American servicemen, and he participated in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive in France.

While on his way to France and back, Marshall sent souvenir postcard folders to my grandmother-to-be, “the girl he left behind” but married upon his return. These folders featured scenes of Camp Upton, in Yaphank, Long Island, NY, and of Camp Lee, VA. The folder with photos of Camp Upton (postmarked August 25, 1918) was sent using a one-cent stamp, and the folder with photos of Camp Lee (postmarked July 8, 1919) was sent using a two-cent stamp! I would guess that he crossed the Atlantic Ocean on the U.S.S. Orizaba, because an unsent souvenir postcard folder with photos of this ship was also among his World War I memorabilia.

Read Marshall Dunnaville, Sr.'s entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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