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Family Ties

Document the Stories of Service and family relationships of those who served in WWI

"The centennial of World War One offers an opportunity for people in the United States to learn about and commemorate the sacrifices of their predecessors."

from The World War One Centennial Commission Act, January 14, 2013

Almost five million American families sent their fathers or mothers or sons or daughters to serve in the Armed Forces during World War One. Countless other families had members who supported the war effort in industry, farming, shipping, and many other fields. All those who served then are gone now, but the Commemoration of the Centennial of World War One is the nation's opportunity to make a permanent and comprehensive record of how and where those family members served, and what they did for the country, before the succeeding generations' memories of that service are lost forever.  Click the " What this is all about " menu button at left for more information.

Featured Story of Service

Holmes E. Dager

Submitted by: KP Morris

Dager 1Dager 1

Holmes E. Dager served in World War 1 with the the United States Army. The dates of service are: Known June 23, 1917-1946.

As the war in Europe was gaining steam it was just a year later that Lt Dager volunteered for Federal Service on June 23, 1917. After going to Ft Leavenworth for his Basic Officers Course he is sent to the 6th Infantry Division being formed at Camp Forrest, GA. Once back with the unit he is assigned to H Company, 51st Infantry September 25, 1917. All of the officers in the division are sent to Ft Sill, Oklahoma for instruction on artillery.

During the next several months the 6th Infantry Division will train for war at various locations, 11th Brigade at Camp Forrest, Georgia, 12th Brigade at Camp Wadsworth, S.C., and the division headquarters at Camp McClellan, Alabama with other units at other camps throughout the United States. The division would not train together until it reached France.

As the training developed 1st Lt Dager would move from unit to unit. Promoted to temporary Captain on August 5, 1917 and moving to F Company January 13, 1918. On September 30, 1918 Dager is assigned to K Company and promoted to Major (Temporary) on October 24, 1918 and moved to command the 3rd Battalion of the 51st Infantry until he reverted to the rank of a Captain in March 1920.

With the 6th Infantry Division Major Dager attended the I Corps Army School at Gondrecourt, France, from July through August 1918. The division is placed in the Vosges Mountains in the Gerardmer Sector. Under French command the relatively quiet sector begins to change as the Americans move into the trenches. It is here that the division is probed by raids and the first casualties are suffered. As the division stays in a static position it returns the favor to the Germans by conducting raids of its own. From August 27th through October 17th the division gets its baptism by fire in the mountains of the Vosges.

Read the whole story in Stories of Service

Army Officer Commission Records

By Constance Potter

"Lead me, follow me, or get the hell out of my way."-- George S. Patton, Jr.

The Records of the Adjutant General, 1917 to ____ (Record Group 407) hold several series of records about individual participation in the Army during World War I. Among them are the records of Commission of Officers in the Regular Army, National Guard, and Officer Reserve Corps, 1917 to 1940 (Entry 415A). This piece focuses on Harry S. Truman, who served with a Missouri National Guard unit, and Col. Harold E. Potter, who was appointed from the Officers’ Reserve Corps.

The forms vary slightly over time, but generally include:

  • The officer’s full name
  • Rank
  • Date of rank and commission
  • Home address, which may just be the town and state
  • Contact person

The records also include a remarks section and discharge information that gives the officer’s rank, corps, date of discharge, and place of discharge. Because these are records of officers, there are no serial or service numbers for World War I service.

Read the whole story in Documenting Doughboys

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