African American Officers gas masks Mule Rearing pilots in dress uniforms Riveters doughboys with mules The pilots African American Soldiers 1

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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October 3, 2017

First fifty 'WWI Centennial Memorials' announced by 100 Cites/100 Memorials 

100 Cities 150

On September 27th, the United States World War One Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum & Library announced the first 50 official “WWI Centennial Memorials” from 100 Cites/100 Memorials program. Although the 100 Cities / 100 Memorials program submission period lasted a full year, from July 2016 to July 2017, since the April 6 centennial of the U.S. declaration of war and the subsequent national awakening about World War I, the interest and focus on local WWI memorials around the country has had a large resurgence. Rather than simply extending the submission period, the 100 Cities / 100 Memorials program Executive Committee has resolved to select and to name the first 50 awardees now, and then to re-open a new submission period. Read more about the first round selections, and about round two.

"Make sure that those U.S. service men and women who served are not forgotten by this and future generations."

Jerry Michaud

One of our great partners in the effort to create the new National World War I Memorial is the Roll of Honor Foundation, a nonprofit charity with the mission of honoring the military service of the men and women of America’s Armed Forces, educating the public about their legacy and encouraging public service among the next generation. The Foundation provides the Roll of Honor -- an online registry of U.S. service persons -- which allows former military members and their families to display their military experience, records of achievement and photos in a digital visual biography. In partnership with the United States World War One Centennial Commission, the World War I Roll of Honor features profiles of many of the more than 4 million American service persons who responded to the call of “Over There” in support of the war-weary Allies and helped achieve victory in "The War That Changed the World." We spoke to Jerry Michaud, who created the profile platform for the Roll of Honor Foundation, to hear about their efforts regarding World War I veterans.

"The volunteers' commitment to the cause they were defending rarely, if ever, wavered."

David Hanna

Before America joined World War I, a small group of Americans volunteered for the French Foreign Legion to help defeat the Central Powers. In his book Rendezvous with Death, historian David Hanna profiles seven of these volunteers: a poet, an artist, a boxer, a stunt pilot, a college student, a veteran of the Spanish American War, and an advertising executive. All seven men were united in courage; and some, like poet Alan Seeger, paid the ultimate sacrifice. Now Hanna has built a section about The American Volunteers of 1914 on the U.S. World War One Centennial Commission web site. The Rendezvous with Death site provides additional information, from both American and international sources, about the Volunteers. We talked to David about his book, the new site, what he learned personally while researching the volunteers.

Six U.S. WWI-era railcars rebuilt in France for the Centennial Commemoration


Trains and Traction: Le Train des Mouettes, a French train association, is rebuilding six United States World War I railcars. These train cars were originally constructed by U.S. Doughboys from the 35th Engineer Regiment in 1917-1918. 100 years ago, the Doughboys of the 35th Engineers worked to assemble railcars in order to move supplies and men to the front lines. Across France, U.S. Army Engineers would assemble thousands of rail cars, and create a brand new railway system. Train des Mouettes is working to complete all six rail cars before the end of the Centennial. Read more about this rolling tribute to the past help that came to France from the United States in WWI.

Auguste Rodin inspired more emotion in the World War I Memorial sculpture


2017 year marks the centennial of  sculptor Auguste Rodin’s death. It gives us ample opportunity to re-think this larger-than-life sculptor. Museums around the world are celebrating Rodin’s legacy.  Rodin continues to influence artists today -- including Sabin Howard, the sculptor for The National World War I Memorial at Pershing Park in Washington, DC.  Rodin created his later sculptures just before the start of World War I. Read more about how his work continues to act as a bridge for artistic sensibilities a century later.

"A clear breaking point in world history, and American history is no exception."


As part of our series on historical resources online, we wanted to showcase a remarkable YouTuber named Cypher, who hosts the channel "The Cynical Historian. Cypher is an offbeat, frank, and fresh, voice in the world of historical review -- and thorough his insight, he has earned a wide & enthusiastic following online, with nearly 40,000 subscribers. His latest episode was one that he produced as a commemorative partner with the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission. The episode discusses the lasting effects of World War I. We asked Cypher to talk about his channel, his current product, and what WWI has to teach us.

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo

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 site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

food will win the war

Highlights of Episode #39:

Food Will Win The War |@01:15

Anti-war sentiment and the IWW Union - Mike Shuster |@05:35

“Those Draftin’ Blues” Maceo Pinkard timely tune |@10:00

Terry Hamby elected Chair of the US WW1 Centennial Commission |@12:50

US Mint to introduce their memorial coin design |@14:00

Re-dedication of the Bernado Cardeens Baseball Field in RI |@14:40

Speaking WWI - OMG! Really!? |@16:15

100C/100M First 50 “WWI Centennial Memorials” announced |@17:40

100C/100M Project Profile - Swanton, OH with Mayor Ann Roth |@18:45

Researching Stories of Service with author Christy Leskovar |@24:00

Underwater Archeology - The WW1 Cruiser the USN San Diego |@29:30

WWrite Blog - Poet James Seamon Cotter Jr. by Connie Ruzich |@31:00

A BIG BUZZ this month |@32:00

Wwrite Blog Post This Week

Wwrite Blog Logo

This week's post brings a fresh face to the WWI Italy described in  Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms. Author and veteran, Shannon Huffman Polson, takes us on a spellbinding trek through the Dolomites, where 689,000 Italians perished during the war. Following the footsteps of characters from Mark Helprin's novel, A Soldier of the Great War, Polson's beautiful prose leads us through the stark, striking landscape of one of Italian history's most indelible memories. A stunning narrative not to be missed!

Get your WWI Commemorative flags - just in time for "Veterans Day"

Small flag

It is only 39 days until Veterans Day!

That is just enough time to order a dozen of these fantastic WW1 Centennial Marker Flags for your local remembrance ceremonies.

This durable ground stake nylon flag measures 8 inches x 12 inches and commemorates the centennial of the "War that changed the world". You'll not only be remembering your local WW1 doughtboys, but you'll also be contributing to them all as part of the flag proceeds go to building America's WWI Memorial in Washington DC.

Or proudly fly the full size, 3 foot by 5 foot WW1 Centennial commemoration flag at your Veterans Day ceremony.

Either way, it is now #CountDownToVeteransDay and you have just enough time to get ready! Order your WWI Centennial Commemoration flags today.

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Maj. Gen. Walter G. Farrell, USMC

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of


Maj. Gen. Walter G. Farrell, USMC


Submitted by: Dana Tibbitts



Maj. Gen. Walter G. Farrell served in World War 1 with the United States Marine Corps. The dates of service are: Known 1916-1946.

My grandfather, Major General Walter Greatsinger Farrell, best known as “Great,” joined the Marine Corps in 1917 after a brief stint in the Army. A consummate storyteller, Great fought in WWI and WWII, earning a Silver Star for “exceptional heroism against the Japanese.” Between wars he served in Haiti, Nicaragua, and later China, where he commanded the 3rd Marine Air Wing. In 1945, Farrell reported for duty at El Toro as deputy commander, 11th Naval District Air Bases.

‘Banana Wars’ author Ivan Musicant referred to Great as “the most fascinating man person I’ve ever met.” He was a resident of San Diego for more than 60 years. At the time of his death in 1990, Great was the oldest living naval aviator in the United States, and held two of the few pilot’s licenses signed by Orville Wright.

Read Walter G. Farrell's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

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September 26, 2017 

First 50 official “WWI Centennial Memorials” to be announced

100 Cities 150

The World War One Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum & Library, in partnership with The American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, will announce the first 50 memorials officially designated as WWI Centennial Memorials Wednesday, September 27, 2017 10:00am Eastern / 9:00am Central. This media event will be live streamed from the Pritzker Military Museum & Library in Chicago. The announcement will also be live-streamed via the PMML's YouTube channel and Facebook account, as well as via the Centennial Commission's Facebook account. All selected memorials will be posted on the Commission web site after the media event. Read all about this big 100 Cities / 100 Memorials announcement here.

'A Soldier's Journey' explored - with US WWI Memorial sculptor Sabin Howard

Sabin Howard

The design for America’s proposed new National World War I Memorial in Washington DC has reached another key stage thanks to an innovative collaboration between the memorial’s sculptor and computer artists in New Zealand. Sabin Howard, the leading classical sculptor, has taken designs for the memorial from his studio in New York to Wellington to work with leading 3-D modelling specialists. Patrick Gregory of Centenary News recently interviewed Howard to get the latest lowdown on the project on the memorial sculpture's evolution and the instantiation planning for it.

"The role of African Americans in the war effort is often overlooked in textbooks"


There is a remarkable new exhibit at the National Afro-American Museum & Cultural Center in Dayton Ohio. The exhibit is called "African Americans Fighting for a Double Victory", and it includes a special section on World War I. The exhibit just opened this past weekend, on Sept. 23, 2017. Further, the museum is also hosting amazing public programs related to the exhibit, to include talks on African American genealogy, as it relates to World War I. We spoke to Jerolyn Barbee, Assistant Director for the museum, along with Paul LaRue, a noted historian and educator, who will give the public presentation on genealogy. Read the entire interview about this outstanding exhibition here.

Veterans History Project launches final segment of World War I web series

LOC Group

The Library of Congress Veterans History Project (VHP) has launched “A World Overturned,” the final chapter in a three-part, online website series titled “Experiencing War,” dedicated to U.S. veterans of the First World War. "A World Overturned” highlights eight digitized veterans’ stories about how World War I forever changed their lives, shared through original photographs, letters, diaries, memoirs and other materials. This series has been presented as a companion site to the Library of Congress exhibit “Echoes of the Great War.” Congress created the Veterans History Project in 2000 to collect, preserve and make accessible the firsthand remembrances of America’s war veterans from WWI through the more recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand the realities of war. Read the entire article here to discover the stories of these three men and many others who served  in the Great War.

"Remembering those who served is fundamental to commemoration"

Family Ties - Stories of Service

Do you have a story about a family member who participated in WWI? The kind of story that is repeated at every holiday dinner; one that tells tales of courage, of battles, of hardship? The World War One Centennial Commission web site’s Family Ties and Stories of Service sections give you the opportunity to research this family history, share these stories of your forbears, and to remember the sacrifices of those who served. Read the latest installment of our series on the outstanding resources to be found on the World War I Centennial Commission's web site. 

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo

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 site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

America declares war


"Part 2: America Declares War"

Come back to the beginning with us in a very special WW1 Centennial News Podcast! Last week, in  Part 1 we examined the great debate in America about getting into the war, and today, in Part 2, we present how events overtook the debate and as America declared its entry into WW1.

This two part special is an adaptation from “In Sacrifice for Liberty and Peace,” a live staged event the Commission produced on the April 6, 2017 centennial of America’s entry into: The war that changed the world. Listen to Part 2 today!

Wwrite Blog: James Seamon Cotter Jr.

Wwrite Blog Logo


"A monster... of war and not of war..." is how James Seamon Cotter Jr. describes the genocide and racism that make up an important part of WWI's history and memory in his poem "O, Little David, Play on Your Harp": the Armenian Genocide, Russian pogroms, the Belgian atrocities, the deadly prejudice against African Americans. This week, WWI poetry specialist, Connie Ruzich, revisits WWrite to discuss Cotter, a forerunner of the African American cultural renaissance of the 1920s, and his vision of the world during the Great War. Don't miss this tribute to a powerful poetic voice.

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Key Chain

“Nothing Stops These Men” – Custom Key Tag $9.95

Inspired by an original World War One poster, this key tag features the dramatic image of a bayonet advance on the enemy, with the United States flag in the upper corner.

A functional way to show your patriotism, this  1-1/4” long, custom key tag has a bright gold finish, with color-fill, and is offered exclusively through the World War One Centennial Commission.

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

Take advantage of the
Matching Donation by the
Pritzker Military Museum and Library

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Peter Alphonse Connelly 

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of

Peter Alphonse Connelly


Submitted by: Chris Connelly



Peter Alphonse Connelly served in World War 1 with the United States Marine Corps. The dates of service are: Known January 1918 to August 1919.

Peter Alphonse Connelly served with the United States Marine Corps 5th Regiment from January 8, 1918 through August 9, 1919.

Peter Connelly was born in the small Indiana hamlet of Oldenburg Indiana in 1896. The town settled by German immigrants and named after Oldenburg Germany, the birthplace of many of the settlers. While growing up living and working on a farm, Peter was an avid hunter and honed his marksmanship skills.

Soon after registering for the daft, Selective Services notified Peter he had been selected for service in the United States Marine Corps. Peter first reported to Paris Island, South Carolina in February 1918 for basic training. While there, Peter spent extra time on the rifle range sharpening his marksmanship skill and eventually qualifying as a Rifle Expert. In February, Peter’s regiment transferred to Quantico, Virginia for pre-deployment training and inoculations. On February 25 1918 he was deployed to France.

Read Peter Alphonse Connelly's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

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September 19, 2017 

Hamby elected as new U.S. World War I Centennial Commission Chair



The U.S. World War I Centennial Commission has elected Commissioner Terry Hamby as the new Chair of the organization. The election took place during the Commission's quarterly meeting on September 13th, in Washington, DC.  Hamby was selected to follow Chair Robert J. Dalessandro, who has led the group since 2014. "This is a huge honor for me," Chair Hamby said in his acceptance. "Both my father and my great uncle served in World War I. My great uncle was lost in the Battle of the Meuse Argonne. I will put my whole heart into this job." Hamby is a Viet Nam-era veteran, serving in the Navy during the war, and later in the Army Reserve, retiring with 26 years of service in 1993. Read more about the new Chair of the Centennial Commission  here.

Wentworth alumni fight to save WWI Doughboy statue from auction block


The Doughboy statue that has stood in front of Wentworth Military Academy in Missouri since 1923, commemorating the sacrifice of Wentworth cadets in WWI, stands now in the center of a legal battle pitting alumni against the school they once called home. Financial troubles forced Wentworth to close its doors in 2017. The school and all its property, including memorabilia like old uniforms, badges, photographs — and the Doughboy statue, by the American sculptor Ernest Moore Viquesney, one of only 139 ever made — are destined for auction on Oct. 7 to pay the school's debts. But the Wentworth Alumni Association is fighting to stop the sale of the Doughboy, claiming that the alumni, not the school, are its rightful owners. Read more about this legal battle whose roots reach all the way back back to the Great War.

United Tribes Technical College powwow in North Dakota honors tribal WWI vets


The United Tribes Technical College (UTTC) honored World War I veterans at its powwow in Bismarck, North Dakota, on 9-10 September. The Powwow is one of the largest Native American powwows in the nation, featuring hundreds of drummers and dancers from tribes all around the world. During a special honor song, the names of more than 350 tribal citizens who served in the World War I era were announced. Their families and descendants took part in the ceremony, along with other veterans, and representative of the U.S. World War One Centennial Commission. Read more about the big powwow.

Met exhibit highlights how artists reacted to and represented World War I horrors

Met exhibit

Organized to commemorate the centennial of World War I, the World War I and the Visual Arts exhibition at the The Met Fifth Avenue in New York City will focus on the impact of the war on the visual arts. Moving chronologically from its outbreak to the decade after the armistice, World War I and the Visual Arts will highlight the diverse ways in which artists both reacted to and represented the horrors of modern warfare. The works on view will reflect a variety of responses, ranging from nationalist enthusiasm to more somber reflections on the carnage and mass devastation that resulted from the war. Read more here about this review of art's responses to the inconceivable carnage and destruction of WWI.

Naval War College hosts WWI period-accurate Army-Navy baseball game

Baseball and Uncle Sam

The Naval War College has announced that they will host a period-accurate baseball game between Army and Navy teams on Friday, September 29th at Cardines Field in downtown Newport, RI. The Army-Navy baseball game will be played in authentic uniforms of the World War I-era, and is a precursor to the opening of a new World War I exhibit at the Naval War College Museum this December. Baseball wasn't just for fun in 1917--it played a vital role in the arrival of U.S. forces into the WWI theater. Check out the fascinating historical background of this upcoming baseball contest, and Play Ball!.

WWI Centennial News Podcast

Podcast Logo

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 site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

lusitania headlines

WWI Centennial News SPECIAL

"Part 1: The Great Debate"

This week and next week, we are going to break format as we present a two-part special podcast version of  “In Sacrifice for Liberty and Peace”.

This two-part special is an adaptation from the live staged commemorative event the Commission produced on the April 6, 2017 centennial of America’s entry into  The War that Changed the World.

Edward Bilous as the artistic director, and Chris Christopher as the US WW1 Centennial Commission’s executive producer pulled together an amazing group of artists, historians musician, actors, and others for a live performance staged outdoors at the National WWI Museum and Memorial  in Kansas City to an audience of over 3,000 attendees.

For this two-part special we have excerpted key moments from the story that unfolds, the music that was performed and the readings from a cast of amazing actors, orators, musicians and other luminaries.

Part One examines the great debate in America about getting into the war.

WWrite Blog - A Common Language for Suffering and Healing: Greek Tragedy, Contemporary Veterans, and WWI: An Interview with Bryan Doerries

Wwrite Blog Logo

As counterintuitive as it sounds, Theater of War Productions works to help heal contemporary combat veterans— with Greek tragedy. With over 600 performances and still counting, Theater of War represents one of the largest and most ambitious projects ever brokered between artists and the Department of Defense. The WWrite Blog was lucky enough to spend some time talking to artistic director, Bryan Doerries, about the ways in which Theater of War might enlighten us about the experience of WWI soldiers and military personnel throughout the Centennial year. Don't miss this week's post with one of America's most influential public artists!

Official WWI Centennial Marker Flag

Small official centennial flags

Get ready to honor our WW1 Doughboys for Veterans Day by ordering these small official WW1 Centennial Marker Flags.

They are perfect as remembrance grave site markers for our veterans on this special day - and by purchasing them you will also help to build America's National WWI Memorial in Washington DC honoring our Doughboys every day of the year. 

Get a dozen now as you #countdowntoveteransday. Ideal for the next few years during the centennial period!

The flags are made of durable nylon, and measure 8 inches x 12 inches, and feature the iconic Doughboy silhouette digitally screened onto the fabric. The flag is secured on a 15.75" wooden dowel with a decorative ball on top . 

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

Take advantage of the
Matching Donation by the
Pritzker Military Museum and Library

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Gilbert Nelson Jerome

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of 

Gilbert Nelson Jerome


Submitted by: Laura A. Macaluso



Gilbert Nelson Jerome's Military Service Record, State of Connecticut is mostly blank. His mother neatly typed up answers as she could, but page three, in which the state asks questions like, "what was your attitude toward military service?" and "what were the effects upon yourself of your overseas experience?' would not be answered, since her son was killed in his bi-plane on July 11, 1918 in France. 

Although twenty-nine year old Gilbert wasn't able to answer those questions, he wrote often to his mother while serving, and it's safe to say that his experiences in WWI were similar to many others, infantry and airmen alike. During training and later, in between sorties, Gilbert and his cohort experienced long periods of down-time, when they would try to keep themselves busy reading, writing letters home or playing games. These quiet periods were often shattered with bad news--such as the day when Gilbert learned his bunkmate Ernest Leach, a minster's son from Cape Cod, was shot down in the same plane Gilbert had flown earlier in the day. 

Certainly no one was safe in the Great War years, civilians or those in service were all under siege from the Spanish flu and other diseases, as well attacks from the enemy. But, those who flew--in paper thin airplanes with mounted machine guns--had high rates of casualties. It didn't matter if you were the son of a president (Quentin Roosevelt was killed in action) or the son of a minister. Many of them died, and as was the custom during war, each was buried where they fell--overseas and far away from their homes and families.

Read Gilbert Nelson Jerome's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

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September 12, 2017

Governors Island living history event to mark NYC World War I Centennial

Camp Doughboy vertical

On September 16-17, World War I will be alive, with a full weekend of activities, ceremonies, and living history demonstrations on Governors Island. All activities are free and open to the public. Camp Doughboy will bring together living history re-enactors, vintage vehicles from a century ago, authors of World War I books, and active duty Army soldiers. They will even have a working World War I-era tank! “We are taking history out of the classroom, and opening it up to everybody." observed Dr. Libby O’Connell, U.S. World War I Centennial Commissioner. “Camp Doughboy gives people of all ages the opportunity to learn about the Great War”. Read all about this big WWI event in the Big Apple here.

Navy to survey wreck of sunken WWI cruiser

USS San Diego vertical

The Navy has announced plans to survey the wreck of the World War I U.S. Navy cruiser San Diego, on which six American Sailors lost their lives when she was sunk as a result of enemy action off the coast of New York on July 19, 1918. The survey's objective is to assess the condition of the wreck site and determine if the ship, the only major warship lost by the United States in, was sunk as a result of a German submarine-launched torpedo or mine. Ultimately, data gathered will help inform the management of the sunken military craft, which lies only a few miles south of Long Island. The announcement comes just weeks after the 99th anniversary of the sinking of the ship, and the survey, which is planned for Sept. 11-15, is timed to allow researchers to conduct a thorough examination of the site and prepare, then release, their findings around the date of the 100th anniversary. Read more about this underwater archeology expedition here.

"We as Americans, need to stand together and take the time to give 'The Great War' the Respect that is owed."

Keith Colley

One of the WWI Centennial Commission's Commemorative Partners is Keith Colley, whose World War I Mobile Museum we profiled last year. His museum has twelve galleries of exhibits, which can be set up & taken down in a matter of hours. True to the name, Keith's Mobile Museum has been traveling across the country, and he sets up the exhibits as part of state fairs, veteran commemorations, living-history activities, and even sporting events. He has been very busy over the past couple of weeks, with a summer schedule that has taken him from Delaware to Texas. We caught up with Keith to get the latest news about the museum, what he is trying to achieve, and what is up ahead for him and the mobile museum.

"We are hard pressed to give a clear answer to our questions relating to the past."

Bernhard Kast

When it comes to military history on the internet, one of the top Producers working today is Bernhard Kast. His YouTube channel, Military History Visualized, took a meteoric route to fame -- garnering over 16 million views of his 160+ video segments, which were all produced just in the past year. Bernhard is the real deal -- an expert in computers/gaming, an expert in history, an expert in teaching, and a gifted storyteller. He was born in 1980, Central Europe, studied Computer Science and History at the University of Salzburg (Europe, Austria) from 2001 to 2008. In his final semester, he had the opportunity to develop and teach a course in rhetoric “Modern Rhetorical Role Models”. Later on, he went to Hamburg to work as a Sales Engineer at a Consulting Firm in the automotive industry and as Junior-Online Marketing Manager at InnoGames a company in browser-based (and now also client-based) gaming. His latest work is a remarkable piece on World War I. Our WW1CC intern Michael Stahler talked to Bernhard about his work, and about how World War I continues to impact us today.

National Academy of Sciences / National Research Council WWI research competition for scholars under 30

David Hounshell

On the occasion of the centennial of World War I, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine are pleased to announce an open competition for scholars under the age of 30 to research and write a scholarly paper on a major aspect of how scientists and engineers in the United States were engaged in the World War I effort. The focus, drawing on the creation of the National Research Council (NRC) associated with World War I, is on institutional changes  and the research enterprise in America. In effect, scholars should look at how the war experience shaped long-term relationships among scientists and engineers and U.S. policymakers regarding national security and public welfare.

Fort Sam Houston commemorates World War I centennial, honors 90th ID

90th ID

Soldiers and civilians gathered Aug. 25 for Fort Sam Houston’s WWI Centennial Ceremony honoring the 90th ID inside the historic Quadrangle here for an outdoor ceremony. As this year marks the national commemoration for the 100th anniversary of U.S. entry into WWI, military basses across the U.S. are celebrating their storied unit’s involvement and accomplishments in ceremonies. And, Fort Sam Houston is no different. During the ceremony after the 90th ID colors were uncased and unfurled, 100-years to the day that the 90th Division activated at Camp Travis, what is now Fort Sam Houston. Read more about this moving commemoration ceremony and its participants here.

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo

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 site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

German Occupation

Highlights of Episode #36:

Life inside German Occupied Belgium
|@ 03:15
Some memorable stories from the front - Mike Shuster
|@ 13:3 0
Preview of Camp Doughboy - Governors Island, NY 9/16-9/17
|@ 19:00
Preview of Pershing Days - Laclede, MO, 9/15-9/17 with Alicyn Ehrich and Denzil Heaney
|@ 20:15
$10,000 WWI academic competition
|@ 24:55 
Speaking WWI - Cooties! Yuk!
|@ 26:00
100C/100M with Jim Yokum on Santa Monica CA project
|@ 27:15
CBS Radio
|@ 33:15 
Phil Eaton - Coast Guard Winged Warrior of WW1
|@ 34:40
WWrite Blog on Champagne
|@ 35:35

And more...

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Devil Dog

Inspired by the WWI Marine Chauchat gunner, this 12” cold cast bronze collector statue is a tribute to those who fought in The Great War.

Imagine a scene somewhere in France late 1918. The term “Devil Dog” has its origins at Belleau Wood where a dispatch from the German front lines to headquarters described the fighting abilities of the Americans as fighting like “Teufel Hunden”- “Hounds from Hell.” The Marine gunner wears the AEF M1917 khaki drab uniform typically worn without collar insignia. His primary weapon is the French Chauchat (CSRG) machine gun, while a Colt .45 pistol serves as his sidearm. His backpack is lightly loaded for the assault and he carries extra 20 round magazines for the Chauchat in a French-made haversack. His gasmask, worn in the “ready” position, helmet and gear are all U.S. issue. These finely sculpted limited edition statues are cast and finished one at a time - no two are truly alike. Each limited edition statue is stamped with individual serial numbers and comes packaged in a high quality color presentation box. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this item will help fund the national WWI Memorial to be built in Pershing Park in Washington, D.C.

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

Take advantage of the
Matching Donation by the
Pritzker Military Museum and Library

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Colonel Pashupati Joseph Sarma 

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of

Pashupati Joseph Sarma


Submitted by: Tanveer Kalo



Colonel Pashupati Joseph Sarma served in World War 1 with the United States Army . The dates of service are: Unknown .


Colonel Pashupati Joseph Sarma was born on September 29, 1893 in Calcutta, British India.

He arrived to the New York City on June 28, 1912 at age of 20 from Liverpool, England on the ship Mauretania. It interesting to note that his race was listed as East Indian in the passenger list.

Sarma settled down in Chicago, Illinois. He become a general medical surgeon in the city.

He registered for the U.S. military on June 5, 1917. According to the book History of Medicine and Surgery and Physicians and Surgeons of Chicago by the Chicago Medical Society, during the war, Sarma entered the medical corps of the U.S. Army and rose to the rank of 1st Lieutenant.

Read Pashupati Joseph Sarma's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

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September 5, 2017 

World War I "Teaching Literacy Through History" educator development sessions take place in six cities for 2017-18 

Education Logos

The U.S. World War I Centennial Commission has allied with the American Legion, and with the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History (GLI), to produce a series of programs to teach educators about World War I topics. Using a $50,000 grant from the American Legion, the Gilder Lehrman Institute will produce World War I-themed "Teaching Literacy through History" seminars in 6 cities throughout the 2017/2018 calendar school year. The Centennial Commission will assist in providing curriculum content, communication support, and other resources. The locations of the six seminars will be Anchorage, AK, Albuquerque, NM, Louisville, KY, San Diego, CA, Providence, RI, and Detroit, MI. Read more about this WWI education initiative here.

WWI American Veterans Centennial silver dollar design unveiling set for Oct. 9

Coin Competition

Coin World Magazine has announced that The United States Mint will unveil designs selected from a juried competition for the 2018 World War I American Veterans Centennial silver dollar on October 9 in Washington, D.C., in conjunction with the Association of the United States Army annual meeting and exposition. World War I Centennial Commission officials confirmed Aug. 29 the October unveiling date, but noted the event will not include release of the obverse and reverse designs for five silver medals honoring the branches of the U.S. military — United States Army, United States Navy, United States Marines, United States Air Force and United States Coast Guard. Read the entire Coin World Magazine article about the planned October 9 unveiling of the coin design here.

Bismarck Powwow to honor Native Americans who served in WWI

Sgt. John W. Smith

One hundred years after World War I, a powwow in North Dakota will honor Native Americans who served in the conflict before they were even considered U.S. citizens. They'll be remembered at the 48th annual International Powwow next weekend at United Tribes Technical College in Bismarck. Several hundred family members and descendants of World War I Native servicemen are expected to participate in the ceremony on Sunday, Sept. 10. Names will be read of more than 355 veterans from five tribes who served in World War I, including Sgt. John W. Smith from the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation. Before he left he wrote a note on a picture of himself that said, "Forget me not." Read more here about this ceremony to remember and honor those who served.

WWI artifacts will have key roles at new National Museum of the U.S. Army


We are following with great interest the construction progress of the new National Museum of the U.S. Army. The museum will house a remarkable collection of artifacts that will tell the story of our nation's military history, from our very beginnings as a nation, right up to present-day.  We are pleased to learn that World War I will play a front-and-center role in that story. The Museum promises to have a truly world-class collection of artifacts from World War I, to include period uniforms owned by high-profile figures from the war, pivotal documents that shaped the war's outcome, weapons that were used in combat, and much, much more. Among the items that will have a permanent home there is a very special tank, the "Five of Hearts", which was a combat veteran from the battle of Meuse-Argonne, and which was recovered from the battlefield soon after the war, and returned to the U.S. as a special tribute to the the courage of those first tank soldiers to serve in the U.S. Army. We spoke to Dr. Patrick R. Jennings, Ph.D., Programs & Education Specialist at the National Museum of the United States Army, to hear more about this great museum, and about it's World War I artifacts.

Arlington, VA in World War I: "The effects of the war were not always far away."

Nathan Bynum

Nathan Bynum works as an Instructor/Producer with the "Document Arlington" community video project. He has spent the several past months leading a group of film students in the creation of a documentary film about Arlington County and WWI. Members of the World War I Centennial Commission attended a special screening of the film last week, and it was amazing. It shows a truly grassroots effort by local high students to engage with WWI in their community. We caught up with Nathan recently, and asked him about the World War I film project.

National World War I Museum & Memorial launches contest to reward teachers

Museum Teacher Adventure

As teachers and students go back to school, the National World War I Museum and Memorial announced the launch of a contest to “Send a Deserving Teacher on an Adventure!” The Museum is offering the public the opportunity to give something special to deserving teachers who make a difference in the lives of students with the grand prize winner receiving a trip to Kansas City for a personalized experience at America’s official World War I museum and memorial. Through Friday, Sept. 8, the public may enter a deserving teacher for the opportunity to win an adventure to Kansas City that includes airfare, hotel accommodations and admission to the National World War I Museum and Memorial for two (2) people (the nominated teacher and a guest of their choice), where they can meet with Museum collections and education staff and enjoy a personalized Museum experience. Read more about this opportunity to give a great teacher and outstanding trip.

Phil Eaton–The U.S. Coast Guard’s Winged Warrior of World War I

Phil Eaton

The Coast Guard and its aviators played a vital role in the World War I war effort. In 1916, Congress authorized the Coast Guard to develop an aviation branch, including aircraft, air stations and pilots. Coast Guard officers began to train at the Navy’s Pensacola Naval Flight School. Lt. Philip Bentley Eaton was one of these officers. On April 6, 1917, the U.S. declared war on Germany and the Coast Guard was transferred from the Treasury Department to the U.S. Navy. As Commanding Officer of Naval Air Station Chatham on Cape Cod, Eaton led the first fight between U.S. naval aviation and the German U-Boat menace in U.S. waters. Read the entire absorbing account of this action, and Eaton's contributions as one of the Coast Guard aviators who have made their mark as members of the service’s long blue line. 

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Sioux Doughboy

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 site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

Highlights Episode #35
"China, Japan &
Native American Soldiers

WW1 in China and Japan |@ 02:30
Mike Shuster - The fire at Salonika |@ 11:35
Dr. “Russ” McDonald on 49th UTTC International Powwow |@ 18:15
Speaking WWI - This week: “Field Day” |@ 24:50 
Joel Mize on 100C/100M project in Mussel Shoals, AL |@ 26:00
Chris Connelly - Story of Service about USMC grandfather |@ 34:20
Tanveer Kalo - former intern becoming subject matter expert |@ 40:30
The Buzz - This week in social Media |@ 41:50

WWrite Blog - Champagne, "champagne," and WWI

Wwrite Blog Logo


This week's WWrite blog post is for literature, history, and, yes, champagne lovers.
Motivation for weary WWI soldiers? Champagne. In 1915, the French government voted to send "champagne," the bubbly, celebratory drink, as a morale booster to troops. Meanwhile, Champagne, the French region and source of the world's most elegant wine symbolizing celebration and peace, amassed severe wounds as a strategic point on Western Front. Don't miss this well-researched, insightful post about the region and its signature drink during WWI by journalist, Marsha Dubrow. Cheers!


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Flag At Legion Headquarters

Order an Official WW1 Centennial Flag in time for Veterans Day! $49.95

This WW1 Centennial Flag is made of durable nylon and measures 3x5'.  Now is the time to get This flag for your planned "Armistice" / Veterans day WWI memorial event.

If you are a state organization, American Legion Post, VFW Post, DAR Chapter or any other VSO planning an event this coming Veterans Day in commemoration of the Centennial of WWI - This is the right time to order your official US WW1 Centennial flag to fly proudly at your event. 

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

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Henry Winter Davis

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of 

Henry Winter Davis


Submitted by: Benjamin Woodard



Henry Winter Davis served in World War 1 with the United States Army . The dates of service are: Known 12 May 1918-14 Oct 1918. 

Born 2 Sep 1887 at Huntington, WV, to John and Mary Davis. Served in the WV National Guard before receiving a commission. Volunteered for immediate overseas service and sailed on MONGOLIA 11 Sep 1918.

Upon arrival attended American officers’ school at La Vanbonne, France; upon completion assigned to 165th Infantry Regiment, 42nd Division as a 2nd Lieutenant (Nov 1917). Assumed duties with headquarters company until Feb 1918 when transferred to Machine Gun Company. Served with this company in the Baccarat sector, Chasseurs, Champagne, Villers-sur-Fere, Murcey Farm, River Orcq, St. Mihiel sector and at Landres St. George.

Recommended for promotion shortly after regiment came out of Chateau Thierry sector. After service at Chalons-sur-Marne, awarded Silver Star. The citation reads as follows:

“By direction of the President, under the provisions of the act of Congress approved July 9, 1918 (Bul. No. 43, W.D., 1918), Second Lieutenant (Infantry) Henry W. Davis, United States Army, is cited by the Commanding General, American Expeditionary Forces, for gallantry in action and a silver star may be placed upon the ribbon of the Victory Medals awarded him. Second Lieutenant Davis distinguished himself by gallantry in action while serving with Machine Gun Company, 165th Infantry Regiment, 42d Division, American Expeditionary Forces, in action near Chalons-sur-Marne, France, 15 July 1918, and by his brilliant leadership. 

General Orders: GHQ, American Expeditionary Forces, Citation Orders No. 1 (June 3, 1919)
Action Date: July 15, 1918".

Read Henry Winter Davis' entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

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