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Kentucky in World War 1

NEW Kentucky and the Great War
The Filson Historical Society has a treasure trove of photographs, memoirs, news accounts and other information about Kentucky in World War I.  Startexploring online here.

Louisville in the Great War

Louisville was, of course, very actively involved in the Great War with the construction of the army training facility Camp Zachary Taylor in 1917, and over 10,000 local soldiers serving in the war.
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Those Who Served and Those Who Never Returned

The National Guard History eMuseum tells us that a total of 84,172 persons from Kentucky served in the United States Army. This total included 80,009 enlisted men, 3,747 commissioned officers, 241 nurses, 153 army field clerks, and 22 United States Marine Cadets.

A breakdown of these figures show that there were 12,759 men in the regular Army, 7,518 National Guardsmen, 2,526 in the Reserve Corps, 2,734 volunteers, and 58,635 drafted men. Seven Kentuckians were Army Major Generals, nine were Brigadier Generals, and 23 were Colonels. Distinguished aviators were Major Victor Strohm and Lieutenant Colonel J. O. Creech.

Of the overall total 41,655 saw overseas duty, while 2,418 deaths occurred among Kentucky troops, 890 of which were battle deaths.

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The WWI Armistice Anniversary Became Veterans Day

The Armistice between the warring nations of WWI was signed on November 11, 1918, at 11 a.m.  For 23 years, Americans recognized the 11 hour of the 11th day of the 11th month as Armistice Day, the end of the War to End All Wars. 

 After World War II, Armistice Day was re-named Veterans Day to accommodate those who fought in the most recent war.

As KDVA Deputy Commissioner Heather French Henry wrote in an Armistice Day op-ed, it was the needs of World War I veterans that prompted Congress of the time to expand benefits for veterans, including insurance, disability compensation and vocational rehabilitation.

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Kentucky WWI Centennial Committee 

Contact: kentucky@worldwar1centennial.org

Committee Members

Heather French Henry, Deputy Commissioner KDVA
Jennifer Adrio, American Red Cross
Lisa Aug, KY Dept. Veterans Affairs (KDVA)
Candace Bradley, Lexington VAMC
Kristen Branscum, KY Tourism, Arts, Heritage
Bill Bright, KY Military History Museum
Mary Broeker, KY Commission on Women
Betty Butler, American Legion
Marvin Claywell, South Central KY Cultural Center
Robert Curren, Louisville Ballet
Helen H. Evans, DAR
Melissa Hall, KDVA
Greg Huen, AMVETS
James Holmberg, Filson Historical Society
Ken Maguire, Camp Zachary Taylor Historical Society
Lori Meadows, KY Arts Council
Marty Nemes, KY League of Cities
Penny Peaveler, Frazier History Museum
Stuart Sanders, KY Military History Museum
Dr. Margaret Spratt, Hopewell Museum
Kate Sprengnether, KY Arts Council
Roger Stapleton, KY Heritage Council
Sherry Wesley, South Central KY Cultural Center
Jerona White, KY Council for Social Studies
Judy Williams, Louisville VAMC

 

 

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