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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.

Andrew C. Shagren

Submitted by: Charles Bohnenberger {Great Great Nephew}

no photo 300Andrew C. Shagren born around 1895. Andrew Shagren 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


Andrew C. Shagren was the son of a Swedish immigrant father and Irish immigrant mother. He was my grandmother's favorite uncle.

He was drafted on Sept 22, 1917 in Philadelphia PA, and served in Company K of the 3rd Battalion of the 315th Infantry Regiment. He rose through the ranks quickly, being promoted to Corporal on June 14th 1917, then Sergeant on October 23, 1918.

By that time he had seen action in the Meuse Argonne offensive, Verdun Sector. This area was one of the toughest sectors of the Allied line, facing the indomitable German emplacements at Montfaucon.

When the offensive began in September, a memoir from a Company K soldier describes the sound and fury of a six hour artillery barrage that preceded the infantry assault. I imagine my great Uncle's thoughts as he prepared to face battle for the first time.

Read more: Andrew C Shagren

Adele Suyder Poston

Submitted by: Carolyn Cathey Castelli {Researching this Veteran for my hospital and part of my nursing history research}

Adele Suyder PostonAdele Suyder Poston born around 1884. Adele Poston 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


As Directress of Nurses at Bloomingdale Psychiatric Hospital in White Plains, NY, Poston joined the American Red Cross as a volunteer in 1917. She was among those "called to the colors" from Bloomingdale Hospital in White Plains, New York, to become the Chief Nurse, Army Nurse Corps, for Base Hospital 117 in La Fauche, France.

She described this position as "the greatest challenge" of her psychiatric nursing career. The nurses, nursing aides, doctors, and occupational therapy aides at the hospital treated shell-shocked soldiers and those suffering from war neurosis. This base hospital, established under the direction of Thomas Salmon, MD, was the first psychiatric hospital to be relatively close (about 30 miles) from the front lines of a war. Poston said she could hear the sounds of battle--the "big Bertha's"--at the hospital, in a letter she wrote from France to Bloomingdale Hospital's Medical Director, Dr. William Russell.

Read more: Adele Suyder Poston

Ken Kolbe

Submitted by: Ken Kolbe {Grandson}

no photo 300

Ken Kolbe 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


I know this is long but some of you maybe interested World War One a Hundred years ago.

Lets start in the beginning. He was born in Grafton to a, as best can be figured, married couple. But it was later learned that the father was already married in another state so she divorced him.

The young son was sent to his fathers parents near Lyndon Station WI who was a German immigrant that was in the Civil war and received a land grant to a property in WI. The grandparents raised him along with his half sister.

When his mother remarried and moved to about 3 miles south of Wahpeton he returned to help on that farm and grew up and attended what is now NDSCS but was only a single building, Main, north of Wahpeton. He was one of the early graduates from the school. His step father had only agreed to help raise him and would not get a part of the farm so he went to work for his mother's family's traveling harvesting company.

Along came WWI, the war to end all wars and he was in Canada and registered at the American Consultant in Winnipeg. Now begins the rest of the story.

Read more: Ken Kolbe

Frank William Atkinson

Submitted by: Thomas E. Atkinson {son}

no photo 300Frank William Atkinson born around 1897. Frank Atkinson served in World War 1 with the United States Marine Corps. The enlistment was in 1918 and the service was completed in 1920.

Story of Service


Frank William Atkinson, U.S. Marines, Serial Number 290676

Enlisted in the united States Marine Corps at Winston-Salem, NC taking the oath on March 20, 1918.

Born in Mocksville, NC on November 15, 1897 and leaving this life on August 30, 1970 in Asheville, NC.

Married on July 17, 1929 to Ethel H. Redish.

Served in the battle of Blanc Mont om October 3, 1918. Awarded the French Croix de Gere and the Silver Star.


Read more: Frank William Atkinson

Arthur Samuel Houts

Submitted by: Claude Humbert {great nephew}

5b44d380642db arthursamuelhouts 2

Arthur Samuel Houts born around 1880, Arthur Houts served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1901 and the service was completed in 1918.

Story of Service


Note: The information below is from a trunk found at my great-aunt's home.

Arthur Samuel Houts was born on May 31st, 1880, in Mount Vernon, Posey County, IN. Arthur Houts was the youngest of a family of six: Annie (born in 1865), Alice (born circa 1866), Maud (born in 1868), Oscar (born in 1875), William (born in 1878), and Arthur.

His father, Samuel Houts, was from Illinois. His mother, Margaret, was born in Ireland.

In 1898, during the Spanish-American war, Arthur Houts enlisted as a private with Company I of the 19th Infantry Regiment. The Regiment went to Puerto Rico and stayed at Ponce for a year as an occupying force.

On Jan. 8, 1901, Arthur Houts enlisted in Company K of the 5th Regiment of the Ohio National Guard, based in Cleveland, OH.

On July 13, 1905, Arthur Houts was commissioned second lieutenant. On Nov. 6, 1906, he was commissioned captain. He became a major on Sept. 9, 1913.

Read more: Arthur Samuel Houts

John William McGrain, Sr.

Submitted by: John W. McGrain, Jr. {son}}

John William McGrain SrMy father worked as a civilian employee of the Quartermaster Corps forwarding supplies to the front. They took over the Candler Building in Baltimore and also shipped material through Fort Holabird.

The Candler Building belonged to the Coca Cola Company founded by Asa Candler. They called it the "Battle of Coca-Cola."

That building still stands as far as I know on Market space near the inner harbor.

I still have a badge my father wore.

Dates Served: 1918
Branch of Service: Civilian

Read more: John William McGrain, Sr.

John B. Kane

Submitted by: Gus and LaWanda Zimmerman {Grandson}

John B Kane

John B. Kane born around 1893. John Kane 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


The Khaki Road

My grandfather, John B. Kane, an architect who lived in the Philadelphia area, died when I was twelve years old. He never discussed his time in the service during WWI.

When my mother was an adult, she discovered a book he wrote to her when she was ten years old. The "little story" was typed on fragile onion skin paper, written as though he were telling his young daughter stories about his military service. We speculate that he wrote the book because WWII was just starting, and he couldn’t imagine how the leaders would allow such monumental sacrifice to occur again.

WWI was the first time Americans fought overseas, consequently resulting in the formation of the Graves Registration Service. His drafting experience was put to good use by designing and plotting the first of many American cemeteries in France.

Read more: John B Kane

Charles C. Peterson

Submitted by: Charles David Rawls {Grandson}

no photo 300

Charles C Peterson born around 1900. Charles Peterson served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1922.

Story of Service


Transcription: World War I Diaries of Pvt. Charles C. Peterson

Diary 1: black notebook, sewn binding
[inscription on front page]
Pvt Charles C. Peterson
R #3 Alabama

[start of diary]

My Army Life
By Charles C. Peterson

On July 29th 1917 I intered the U.S.N.G. I was only a kid not old enough to belong to the Army, but I enlisted anyway in the 1st Ala. N.G. Co. D. from Fort Deposit Ala. Not knowing anything about the Army, I was put in a training camp at Camp Sheridan Montgomery, Ala. for 2 weeks training. After the 2 weeks training I was trained for a soldier and was then sent back to my company and was assigned to a squad of 7 pvts. And a corporal in charge. On Aug. 5 1917 the Ala. N.G. was mustered into the Federal service and about 75 men from Co. D. 1st Ala. N.G. was transferred to Co. D. of the 4th Ala. N.G. I happened to be one of the men in the 75 that were transferred. This made Co. D. 4th Ala. N.G. 250 war strength. The company was then divided into 4 Platoons. 1,2,3,4. Later the 4th Ala. N.G. was changed to the 167th Infantry and put in the 42nd Div. which was named the “Rainbow Division.”

Read more: Charles C. Peterson

John August Kiecker

John August KieckerSubmitted by: Janet L. Rajala {Grand Niece}

John August Kiecker born around 1890. John Kiecker 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


John August Kiecker served as a corporal in the American Expeditionary Force of the U.S. Army under General John J. Pershing. Although I have few records of his service, the following is an excerpt from a letter he wrote to his nephew, John Lietzau, (my uncle) on April 20, 1919 from Quernignyrot, France.

"Well, John, I am still in France but soon will leave for Germany where we'll enter the occupation troops and therefore have to hold our end down until everything is settled. The first peace treaty is supposed to be signed by the 25th. Inst. probably the soldiers will be lessened according to peace negotiations. Just think today it is Easter sunday and no eggs for today. Eggs, milk and sweet deserts you don't get in the army. Yesterday we had a beautiful day, sunshine all day, mind you. This occurs not often in France. I must tell you that I am teaching school here in the army and therefore am not drilling at present. Four boys from our company got a discharge from the Army and now be home or on their way home."

" I am feeling hale and hearty and would be ok if they send us back to the states. "

"The frogs are shearing their sheep now consequently they are looking for warmer weather in the near future. By frogs, I mean the french people. You can rest assured it will be a great day for us boys when they turn us loose with a honorable discharge from the services of the U.S."

Read more: John August Kiecker

Frank William Taylor

Frank William TaylorSubmitted by: Janet L. Rajala {Granddaughter}

Frank William Taylor born around 1892. Frank Taylor 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


My grandfather never discussed his experiences in WWI. Further, all his military records were destroyed in a fire in Washington D.C. in the 1970s. However, I have his pocket Bible given to him before he was sent overseas. It indicates he was going to France.

He entered the Army in August 1917, soon after he married my grandmother. His picture of him in uniform displays an insignia that gave us a clue as to his service. Researching the insignia, we believe he was part of the 89th Infantry Division. Another insignia on his collar appears to denote his relationship to the artillery. If so, he most likely served with the 164th Artillery Regiment.

Further research indicates the 89th Infantry Division was sent to France in June of 1918. They were part of the campaigns at St. Mihiel and Meuse-Argonne. The 89th was given a Battle Honor for their major operations in these two battles.

Read more: Frank William Taylor

Albert B. Replogle

Submitted by: Ramona Replogle {Daughter}

no photo 300

Albert B. Replogle born around 1893. Albert Replogle 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


Sgt. Albert B. Replogle

“L” Company, 362nd Infantry 91st Division “The Wild West Division”
Grass Range, Montana

We arrived in Tacoma in September, conscripts and a few enlisted men from,the nine Western states and Alaska territory. Montana had more recruits per capita than any other state.

Camp Lewis was prepared for us and we started drilling immediately. My division, the Wild West Division but officially known as the 91st, was given an insignia inspired by the Wild West: a green fir tree circled in red with a red 91 on center. We were proud to be the first American Army division formed in America and the first to be shooting in France.

We boys from Montana and Wyoming made up the 362nd Infantry Regiment, and we excelled at everything, We were the best in the mock trench battles, open warfare training, rifle fixed bayonets and hand to hand combat, and of course we were all expert marksmen and experienced shooters.

We needed some good Western passwords. We choose “Powder River”—a broad and dangerous looking stretch of wide water and coal-blackened sand running through Eastern Montana and Northern Wyoming. Not as formidable as believed at first sight, being actually only a few inches deep. A fitting thought while facing the Hun. It became our battle cry and we coupled it with “let ‘er buck”....the universal command of every ready-mounted Bro co Buster from corral to rodeo chute: Powder River - Let ‘er Buck became our war Whoop, our battle cry, our motto, our cheer. The motto of the French Army was, “they shall not pass”. We replaced that three year old watch word with our Wild West equivalent of let’s go...."Let’er Buck”


Read more: Albert B. Replogle


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