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Stories of Service

You can search for the name or unit and you will get a list of the stories that contain them.

Robert (Harold) Harold Cromie

Submitted by: James H Keil {grand nephew}

no photo 300Robert (Harold) Harold Cromie born around 1892. Robert (Harold) Cromie served in World War 1 with the a non-government service organization. The enlistment was in 1914 and the service was completed in 1919.

Story of Service


Robert Harold Cromie was born in New Castle, Lawrence, PA, USA, to Robert and Anna Beck Cromie. He worked in the tin mill in New Castle, along with his father and brothers. In August of 1914, he is listed in a New Castle News story as having been stationed at Fort Totten in NY with Coastal Defenses. We have been able to find no official record of this service.

His obituary also indicates he enlisted with Canadian Expeditionary Force in 1914 and served four years in France, followed by one year in occupied Germany. This seems to follow family history, which also adds that he was gassed in the trenches, and suffered permanent nerve damage, which causes one half of his body to sweat profusely, while the other was completely dry.

Read more: Robert (Harold) Harold Cromie

Morris Polsky

Submitted by: James Taub {Great-Great-Nephew}

Morris Polsky image

Morris Polsky was born around 1885. Morris Polsky 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

 Morris Polsky was born in Lincoln, Nebraska sometime in the 1880s. His parents were Eastern European Jews who had immigrated only a few years previously. Morris enlisted in the United States Army on May 5th, 1917. By May 7th he was at Fort Logan near Denver, and by the 16th was at Fort Scott in San Francisco. Finally, on the 22nd of June he found himself at Fort Bliss near El Paso, Texas, where he completed his training as an artilleryman. He proved so proficient that by the 17th of September, he was appointed Sergeant. His was assigned then, as an NCO, to the 18th Field Artillery Regiment. Morris had no previous military experience.

The fact that he was so rapidly promoted shows us that the Army’s command structure was not prepared for the great influx of men into the military after war was declared. As in Morris’ case, it had to be rapidly expanded.

Read more: Morris Polsky

Harriet Louise Carfrae

Submitted by: Mary Rohrer Dexter

no photo 300

Harriet Louise Carfrae served in World War 1 with the Red Cross. The dates of service are: Known 5/1917-5/1920.

Story of Service


Born Ninety miles south of Lake Erie at Norwalk, Ohio on January 10, 1879 to immigrant parents, Harriett Louise Carfrae moved west with her family to Miami County, Indiana before her first birthday.   Her father, James, was Scottish and worked as a boilermaker for the railroad.  Her mother, Margaret Dillon Carfrae, was Irish, but arrived in the United States by immigrating first to Canada.   Harriett had curly, dark hair, light eyes and wore round wire glasses.  It can be guessed that she was not very tall from the average size of others with the same nationality of her parents.  

When she was 18, Harriett was part of the leadership of a Christian youth organization named, The Christian Endeavor, which was involved in the temperance movement.   She was known as Hattie by her friends. When she turned 21, she moved to St Louis in order to attend the Baptist Sanitarium Hospital School of Nursing.  She graduated with 17 other women in 1903.  The school of nursing was a two-year program which enrolled its first students in 1895, indicating Harriet was part of the school’s seventh graduating class.  At some point, the nursing school expanded to a three-year program. 

Read more: Harriet Louise Carfrae

Private Abdul Samad

Submitted by: Tanveer Kalo 

no photo 300Private Abdul Samad served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The dates of service are: Known November 16 1917- July 11, 1919.

 Story of Service


Abdul Samad was born in Kirkalen Calcutta India in May 1895. He came to the United States before 1917 and settled in New York City.

He began his U.S. Army service on November 16 1917 in New York City. Samad served with the 152 Depot Brigade until August, 16 1918. He then served with Company A of the 329 Colored Labor Service Battalion, Quartermaster until his discharge.

Samad served overseas from August 26, 1918 to June 23, 1919.

Read more: Private Abdul Samad

Everett Ray Seymour

Submitted by: George Besse, Commander of American Legion Post 78

Everett Seymour image

Everett Ray Seymour born around June 1, 1895. Everett Seymour 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


Everett Ray Seymour was an apprentice carpenter when he became one of the first Ridgefield, Ct men to be drafted into the war, enlisting in October 1917.

After training at Camp Devens and Camp Merritt, he was shipped to France with Company L of the 165th Infantry from Connecticut.

In July of 1918, Private Seymour and his Company, then part of the 42nd Division, were involved in a battle near Fere-en-Tardenois northeast of Paris and west of Reims. They were working their way up a hill on a farm fighting a long morning cleaning up machine gun nest, and near the summit young Seymour was brought down by a bullet the suddenly ended his brief, but honorable career serving his country. He was 23 years of age and described as "A bright young man of straightforward, clean-cut habits and a fine, manly fellow who was well liked.

In August of 1920 The American Legion Post Number 78 was named in his honor as he was the first Ridgefield resident to die in battle during WWI.

Today his grave is on Row 10 of Plot B at the Oise-Aisne American Cemetery, very near where he fell.


John Brother Cade

Submitted by: Johnette Brooks {GA WWI African American Historian}

John Brother Cade uniformJohn Brother Cade was born around 1894. John Brother Cade served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1917.

Story of Service


2nd Lt. John Brother Cade
1894 – 1970
Elberton, GA
Southern University Library Namesake | Historian | Author | Educator

By Johnette Brooks

John Brother Cade (aka John B.) was born on 19 October 1894 in Elberton, GA. He was the second child of William Richard and Sara Francis (Bradford) Cade. His siblings are his elder brother Luther (also a WWI Private); William Jr.; Dora J.; Luthura and Leola. He attended St. Paul’s CME Church grade school. In 1915, he graduated from Knox Institute and Industrial School in Athens, GA. He was an early member of the C.M.E. or Colored Methodist Church.

Shortly after entering college, John became one of the first to volunteer for the new WWI Officers School in 1917. On 12 June, he was plowing his daddy’s field during the summer college break when he received the notice of his appointment shortly after 8AM. After refusing to pay double the bus fare to a negro man in Elberton with a car, he took the Greyhound bus and arrived too late to take the 3:40PM, non-stop train the Army provided to Iowa. So, he boarded the Dixie Flyer the next day and immediately saw faces he recognized. He first saw (future 1 Lt.) Pierce M. Thompson, the Albany Normal and Industrial School principal; then William Robinson, an Albany teacher; John J. James, a mail carrier from Thomasville.

Read more: John Brother Cade

Glen Humphrey

Submitted by: Linda Williams {Great Niece}

Glen HumphreyGLEN HUMPHREY, born July 21, 1894, Livingston Co., MO. Glen grew up on the farm of his father, Stephen Joshua Humphrey. His mother was Mary Elizabeth “Mollie” McLain, who died of pneumonia when Glen was only 6 years old.

He was the third born of five siblings. The oldest sibling, Roy, died shortly after birth. His younger brother, Harvey, also died shortly after birth. His youngest sister, Mirl, died at age 11. Only he and his older sister, Gertrude, lived to become adults.

He attended McCormick grade school which was located about one mile from the farm house. He also helped his father farm. Glen Humphrey registered for the draft in 1917. His draft registration contained the following information:

Address: RFD 4, Chillicothe, MO
July 21, 1892 Livingston Co., MO; has the wrong year
Farmer; self-employed in Livingston Co., MO
Single with no children
Medium height / build
Blue eyes, brown hair
Registered on June 5, 1917 in north Rich Hill Township.

Glen was drafted on July 27, 1917. His ID was City No. 4, 1282. He was inducted on Sept. 18, 1917 in Chillicothe, MO and transported to Fort Riley, KS for training. His Army serial number was 2,184,213. He was a Sergeant in Company C, 356th Infantry, 89th Division. He entered service in Camp Funston, KS. He sailed for France on May 8, 1918. His service overseas was from June 4, 1918 until his death on Nov. 10, 1918. (Missouri Soldiers Database).

Read more: Glen Humphrey

Harold Edward Carlson

Submitted by: Robert E Carlson {Grandson}

Harold Edward Carlson mugHarold Edward Carlson born around 1892. Harold Carlson 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


Harold Carlson, born Harald Eugen Karlsson, on November 3, 1892, in Norrköping,Östergötland, Sweden, was orphaned in 1900, when his father died. He immigrated to Brooklyn, New York, to live with his mother's sister, Mathilde Jensen and his uncle Jens (John) Jensen. It was a crowded house with his sister, another aunt, three cousins and a border, who was my grandmother's brother.

Harold drove a horse-drawn wagon for a warehouse business, as a young man. When the war broke out, he was inducted as a teamster. Harold kept a notebook that listed his duty stations from his induction to his discharge. This is his entry: "May 28, 1918 left home for Camp Upton. Left Upton June 13, 1918 for Camp Johnston, Fla. Arrived the 16th. Left Johnston Aug. 2. To Camp Hill 4. From Hill to France 14. Arrived in Brest 26. Sept. 4 to Sougy 8th (arrived). From Sougy June 2, 1919. From Lemunox 3, 1919. St. Gearvas 12th."

My grandfather served in the 318th Field Remount Squadron for his time in the war. the 318th was in the 318th was in the Service of Supply Intermediate area of the AEF. Although he was not at the front, according to my grandmother, he was, at one point gassed (perhaps a temporary detail to the front?) and he suffered from shell shock on his return.

Read more: Harold Edward Carlson

Charles Wilhelm Gärtner (Gardner)

Submitted by: Charles R. Gardner {Grandson}

5d1d2eebb9270 B Grand PaCharles Wilhelm Gärtner born around 1892. Charles Gärtner 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


This is the Story about my grandfather, Charles Wilhelm Gärtner, his participation in WW1 and ends after the War with his marriage to my grandmother Anna K. Wolff. Charles Wilhelm Gärtner, participated in the “The Great War”. Here is what I’ve discovered about him and that “War”.

This was his birth name and he does not change it until 1919. The World War started in July 28, 1914. The United States declared war on the Axis Powers later, in April 6, 1917. In June 5, 1917, Grandpa was working for the “Automatic” Sprinkler Corporation of America in New York City. They sent him to Atlanta, Georgia where he then lived. His job was “Sprinkler Engineer” and maybe the small factory manager. He worked in the Caudler Building (it was small building according to local historians), Atlanta Branch, in the city (Atlanta Georgia). He lived at the Atlanta YMCA. He was single, 25 years of age, of medium height, medium build, gray eyes, and black hair.

On June 5, 1917, he filled out a Draft Registration Card (#756). A year later (April 27, 1918) he was drafted in Atlanta, Georgia. He told his boss “Good bye” or maybe sent a letter to the New York City Headquarters to inform them and waits for his replacement to come. Once released from his job, bags packed, he walked to the Atlanta Recruiting Station and boards a bus for the 13-14 mile trip to Camp Gordon, named after the Confederate General John Brown Gordon. Camp Gordon, northeast from Atlanta, was the receiving station in this area (Georgia & Alabama) for Army induction. Today it’s the current site of the DeKalb-Peachtree Airport.

As a draftee, he was now a member of the United States National Army (USNA) and somehow ended up assigned to the Army Engineer Corps. He wore the “Engineer Castle” on his left collar. Now Private Charles W. Gärtner, from April to May 1918 was assigned to the “157 Depot Brigade,” Camp Gordon, Ga.

Read more: Charles Wilhelm Gärtner (Gardner)

Willie Edward Richardson

Submitted by: Sherrill Rayford, Ed.D {Grandchild}

Willie Edward Richardson head shotWillie Edward Richardson born around April 4, 1895. Willie Richardson served in World War 1 with the United States Army . The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1917.

Story of Service


Memories: Willie Richardson, A World War I Veteran

My grandfather, Willie Richardson, was a veteran of World War I, and his experiences symbolize the service and family life of many African American soldiers. Unfortunately, their military service occurred during a period of “nots.” They could not eat in certain businesses; they could not live in certain neighborhoods; their service was often overlooked or devalued.

Yet, my grandfather and those soldiers defended the world and prospered within limitations.

Yet, the invisibility of my grandfather’s service seemed invisible in 2018 as I viewed a pictorial display of World War I soldiers in an Arkansas Welcome Center. None of the soldiers in the display looked like my grandfather. Therefore, I contacted the Arkansas visitor’s bureau to express that soldiers of color should be commemorated too. The communication exchange was informative and productive as I learned of efforts to find and preserve the service of Arkansas’ soldiers of color during World War I.

However, I also learned that my grandfather’s two brothers also served in World War I. Before the communication exchange, I thought one of my grandfather’s brothers had been killed in another war. This perception came from visits to his home in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and watching him reflectively hold papers and a folded flag that belonged to one of his brothers. Afterwards, he returned the materials to a cedar chest beside his bed.

Read more: Willie Edward Richardson

Waller Browne Morris

no photo 300Submitted by: Patrick Morris {Grandson}


Waller Browne Morris was born around 1892. Waller Morris 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


Like many thousands of young men, Waller Browne Morris worked stateside for the Army during the war, contributing logistical support necessary for fielding an effective infantry.

Though he was born and lived most his life in Kentucky's Lexington region, as a young man he lived briefly in Chicago, where he worked as a clerk for the Illinois Central Railroad Company.

Possibly because of his railroad work, in 1918 he served as a 3rd Corporal in the 159th Depot Battalion, processing newly arrived draftees for training at Fort Zachary Taylor. At age 49 in 1941 he registered again for military service, but did not enlist, for the next world war.

Read more: Waller Browne Morris


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