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

World War I Centennial News


 

Commission Special Advisor Senator John Warner honored at the Pentagon

By Chris Isleib
Director of Public Affairs, U.S. World War One Centennial Commission

Ash Carter John Warner Carl Levin(L to R) Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, Senator John Warner, Senator Carl LevinThe Department of Defense honored former senators John W. Warner (R-Virginia) and Carl Levin (D-Michigan) at the Pentagon. Levin and Warner are former chairmen of the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter presented the two men with awards at the Pentagon’s Hall of Heroes.

The two men were awarded the Medal for Distinguished Public Service which is the Department of Defense’s highest civilian honor. Carter also dedicated the Levin-Warner Legislative Affairs Suite in honor of the two senators.

Senator John Warner serves as a Special Advisor to the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission. In that capacity, he is involved with assisting the commission with their outreach to elected officials on the national level. He has long been an advocate for the U.S. military, and for our veterans. He is a former Secretary of the Navy, and personally served as a Navy enlisted sailor during World War II, and as an officer in the Marine Corps during the Korean War.

Read more: Special Advisor, Senator John Warner, honored at the Pentagon

Virginia holds statewide vigil to commemorate World War One Vets

Event Sept17 GuardingMemorials 250

By Chris Isleib
Director of Public Affairs, U.S. World War One Centennial Commission

On Saturday, September 17th, the World War I Centennial Commission for the Commonwealth of Virginia hosted a statewide vigil to Commemorate the state’s World War I veterans. The Vigil was organized by Lynn Rainville, a professor at Sweet Briar College.

The purpose of the vigil was to bring attention to the Virginians who served in World War I, and it was held from 11am to 1pm at several communities across the state including Front Royal, Harrisburg, Newport News, Petersburg, Byrd Park in Richmond, and in Winchester VA. Hundreds of people came out to see participate in the vigil.

Professor Rainville was inspired to put together the vigil when she saw the “We Are Here” performance art piece created by the UK’s 14-18NOW, a government-sponsored commemoration organization. On the centennial of the first day of the Battle of the Somme, “We Are Here” posted silent World War I reenactors, in uniforms with bags packed, at train stations and World War I landmarks across Britain. The piece was deeply moving, and created a great deal of conversation and introspection throughout the entire country.

Read more: Virginia Holds Statewide Vigil to Commemorate World War One Vets

National World War I Museum and Memorial to be Featured on Jeopardy! 

By Mike Vietti
National World War I Museum and Memorial

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The National World War I Museum and Memorial will be featured prominently on the Friday, Sept. 23 episode of the Emmy Award-winning television game show Jeopardy!.

JeopardyJeopardy!, the top-rated quiz show on television with more than 23 million viewers each week, will feature the Museum in an entire category of video clues filmed on-site at the Museum. Jeopardy! Clue Crew members Jimmy McGuire and Kelly Miyahara visited the Museum and participated in the filming of the clues.

“With millions of viewers across the world, Jeopardy! provides a tremendous opportunity to educate the public about the Great War and its enduring impact,” said Dr. Matthew Naylor, National World War I Museum and Memorial President and CEO. “We are thrilled that the team at Jeopardy! chose to recognize the importance of the First World War by traveling to our nation’s official World War I museum and memorial.”

Jeopardy! is hosted by Emmy winner Alex Trebek and recently began its 33rd season in syndication. Since its syndication debut in 1984, more than 7,300 episodes featuring more than 448,000 clues have aired. The show holds the Guinness World Records mark for the most Emmy Awards won by a game show (33 Emmys).

Individuals interested in viewing the show can identify broadcast times in their area by visiting https://www.jeopardy.com/about/find-your-station.

100 years ago in September, tanks changed warfare forever

By Kyle Mizokami
via Popular Mechanics

One hundred years ago on September 15th 1916, German soldiers looked out over the tops of their trenches and got a tremendous shock. Giant metal-covered vehicles, as large as a barn, were slowly advancing towards their position, moving forward in a caterpillar-like motion and spitting cannon and machine gun fire as they came. It was like nothing they'd ever seen before. This was the battle of Flers-Courcelette, and the age of the tank had arrived.Tank

The tank was invented to break the stalemate of trench warfare on World War I's European battlefields. Artillery and machine guns, plentiful on both sides, were particularly effective against the main form of offense—the infantryman. As a result the defense was stronger than just about anything that could be thrown against it, so much so that infantrymen spent most of their time cowering in trenches and bunkers. When the infantry did attack, they would often outstrip their supporting machine gun fire, leaving them vulnerable to counterattacks.

Enter the tank. Designed to swing the pendulum back, the tank was destined to make the offense stronger than the defense and accompany the infantry in the attack, bringing along protected machine guns and cannons that would later be used to beat back the inevitable enemy counterattack.

Read more: 100 Years Ago, Tanks Changed Warfare Forever

4 Technologies invented in World War One that we still use today

By Dixie Somers
via Argunners Magazine

War doesn’t just spur nations to create better offensive and defensive technology; it can also lead to everyday products and technology made necessary due to shortages and changing needs in times of war. Here are just a few examples of technology developed during the Great War that we still use.radio 1

1. Air Traffic Control

Prior to World War I, pilots were virtually isolated once they left the ground with no ability to receive information. The United States Army developed and installed the first two-way radios in planes during WWI, but before America became involved in the war. Two-way radios were developed in San Diego in 1915 with the ability to send telegraphs over a distance of 140 miles a year later. In 1917, the technology advanced to allow human voices to be transmitted from a plane to a ground operator.

The first Airport Traffic Control tower to regulate arrivals, departures, and aircraft movement opened in Cleveland, Ohio in 1930.

Read more: 4 Technologies Invented in World War 1 That We Still Use Today

New web site section on Army Nurse Corps in WW1 debuts

Army Nurse Outdoor UniformThis week a new section of the World War One Centennial Commission web site appears that will tell the story of the Army Nurse Corps in World War 1. Unlike the iconic Red Cross nurses of WW1, the role of the Army Nurse Corps nurses in the Great War has been somewhat obscure.  This effort to highlight the contributions of Army nurses to the war effort has been decades in the making.

In 1984, Jo-Ann Power read a description of women who volunteered to go to France to nurse American Doughboys. The piece was a short article in The Washington Post, but it piqued Jo-Ann’s interest in women who ventured abroad to a foreign land—and a foreign war—during a time when few women traveled beyond their garden gates.

Jo Ann PowerAuthor Jo Ann PowerA freelance writer for newspapers and magazines, Jo-Ann was also an aspiring novelist. She had taught high school and college history classes, and she knew that many enjoyed learning history from reading well-researched historical novels. The story of 22,000 American women who volunteered to nurse wounded and dying United States soldiers and airmen had been woefully neglected.

Read more: New web site section on Army Nurse Corps in WW1 debuts

“NYC Doughboy Day" World War I living history event a big success at Governors Island

 Ambulance at Governors Island 300By Chris Isleib
Director of Public Affairs, U.S. World War One Centennial Commission

NEW YORK (September 19, 2016) – There was a full agenda of World War I-related activities this Saturday in New York City, as a platoon of living history reenactors & historians brought World War I Doughboy Day to Governors Island National Monument. They hosted demonstrations & stories, and portrayed famous New York regiments, including the Harlem Hell Fighters.

Read more: “NYC Doughboy Day" World War I Living History a big success at Governors Island

National World War I Museum and Memorial named to Top 25 Museums in US by TripAdvisor

By Mike Vietti
National World War I Museum and Memorial

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel site, named the National World War I Museum and Memorial among the top 25 museums in the United States for the third consecutive year as part of its 2016 Travelers’ Choice awards.

The National World War I Museum and Memorial, which houses the most comprehensive collection of World War I objects in the world, earned a No. 23 ranking from TripAdvisor among the more than 35,000 museums in the U.S. The Museum was one of only four recognized on the top 25 list from the Midwest and the only museum from Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Oklahoma or Arkansas to receive the distinction. WW1 MuseumThe recognition marks the third straight year the Museum has been ranked in the top 25. Less than 1 percent of organizations listed on TripAdvisor earn Travelers’ Choice status.

“We are thrilled to share this incredible recognition with the entire region,” said Dr. Matthew Naylor, National World War I Museum and Memorial President and CEO. “As America’s only official World War I museum and memorial, it’s quite fitting to be bestowed with this honor as we continue in the centennial commemoration of the conflict that forever changed world history.”

Read more: National World War I Museum and Memorial named to Top 25 Museums in US by TripAdvisor

Four Questions for Chris Garcia

"The WW1 generation deserve to be remembered"

By Chris Isleib
Director of Public Affairs, U.S. World War One Centennial Commission

Chris Garcia is an Iraq War Vet who now works as a Education Coordinator at Virginia War Museum in Newport News, VA. He is also a leader in the World War I reenacting community, acting as the Sergeant Major to the Great War Association, which organizes the largest World War I reenactment events in the United States every year in Newville PA.

You are a Museum Education Coordinator and historian. Tell us about your career, and your interest in WWI.

Chris GarciaChris GarciaI started my career at the Virginia War Museum in April of 2008 as the Museum's Education Coordinator, where I am responsible for developing and supervising all of the Museum's Education and Youth programs, teaching Military History for everyone from elementary school children, to post-graduate military professional instruction.

Prior to the War Museum, I was in the Navy for nine years and participated in multiple combat operations in the Balkans and Iraq. I earned my BA in history in 1993 and my MA in history in 2012.

Read more: Four Questions for Chris Garcia

100 Cities / 100 Memorials program, manual and website have been updated

100C 100M Logo small

By Theo Mayer
Program Manager, 100 Cities / 100 Memorials Program, U.S. World War One Centennial Commission

As many of you are aware, earlier this month we extended the grant application deadline for our $200,000 matching grant giveaway for restoring and/or preserving WWI memorials from November 11, 2016 to June 15, 2017.

The extension, implemented by popular request, is proving to be a huge boon to excited participants who now have enough time to identify, research, plan and prepare WWI memorial projects to submit.

We are happy to announce that last week we completed our update to the competition manual, schedule and website.

We strongly recommend that all participants and interested parties download the updated competition manual or read the information online at ww1cc.org/100Memorials. We also urge you to subscribe to the blog (sign up on any page under the menu) so you will be automatically notified of all program information, updates, opportunities and resources. Click here to download the competition manual. Click here to go to the web site.

US Army Museum groundbreaking at Fort Belvoir

Army Museum Groundbreaking

By Chris Isleib
Director of Public Affairs, U.S. World War One Centennial Commission

The World War One Centennial Commission would like to congratulate General Gordon Sullivan (USA Retired) and the Army Historical Foundation on their recent groundbreaking ceremony of the National Museum of the United States Army on September 14 at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.

The National Museum of the US Army will serve as a national landmark to honor America's Soldiers, preserve the history of America's oldest military service, and educate all Americans about the Army's service to our nation.

Read more: US Army Museum groundbreaking at Fort Belvoir

U.S. World War I Centennial Commission signs Partnership Agreement with Daughters of the American Revolution

By Joshua Venuti
Staff Writer

A new operational agreement has been reached between the World War 1 Centennial Commission and the Daughters of the American Revolution, for the commemoration of World War I.

The U.S. World War 1 Centennial Commission will endorse the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution World War I Centennial as an official project. In turn, from 2016 through 2019, the Daughters of the American Revolution will highlight the Centennial of World War I as a commemorative event. This new arrangement promises to help both organizations to foster the education about World War I for the people of the United States.DAR logo

Per the agreement, both organizations will operationally support each other at various scheduled public events. New education programs and public events will be created, specifically to promote the Centennial of World War I. In addition, editorial content will be shared between Centennial Commission and the Daughters of the American Revolution websites, and social media platforms.

Read more: U.S. World War I Centennial Commission signs Partnership Agreement with Daughters of the American...

World War 1 Living History comes to Ft. Jay at Governors Island, NY on September 17

By Chris Isleib
Director of Public Affairs, U.S. World War One Centennial Commission

Ft Jay NYNEW YORK – There will be a host of World War I-related activities on Saturday, September 17, 2016 at NYC's Governors Island. A platoon of living history reenactors will bring World War I Doughboys to Governors Island National Monument for a free exhibition. See demonstrations and hear stories as reenactors portray famous New York regiments, including the Harlem Hell Fighters, at Doughboy Day at Fort Jay.

The centennial of American involvement in the “Great War” is in 2017 and this group of volunteer reenactors will share the story of U.S. participation. Both men and women will be in full uniform and provide displays and talks about the role America played in World War I. It is free and suitable for all ages.

Read more: "DOUGHBOY DAY" AT FORT JAY SATURDAY, SEPT 17, 2016

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