Ernest E. Butell
Submitted by: Harold Jehle
Ernest E. Butell served in World War 1 with the United States Army . The dates of service are: Known May 1917 - November 1919.
"Honest and faithful" reads the enlistment record of Sergeant Ernest E. Butell of Baldwin City, Kansas, who enlisted May 5, 1917 as a volunteer before the first draft was held on May 18, 1917.
He served in the 1st Kansas Infantry from his enlistment until October, 1917 and then was a member of Company H, 137th Infantry, 35th Division. He was trained at Camp Doniphan, Oklahoma by battle experienced British and France instructors. There were not enough American Regular Army instructors to train the nearly 700,000 draftees who flooded the newly established camps in 1917.
Sergeant Butell departed from Camp Mills, New York on April 27, 1918 for France. While receiving additional training near the Vosges Mountains, one unit from his division made a raid on a German position bringing back five prisoners.
At St. Mihiel, the division was held in reserve which meant spending time in pup tents during the celebrated French rains. Later began the rough trip in 200 French trucks across the ruts that were called roads to the area of Grange-Le-Conte, a wooded area east of Beauchamp until September 26th.
The morning of September 27, 2017, artillery announced the beginning of the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) assault on Germans spread throughout the massive Meuse-Argonne sector. That was when Sergeant Butell received a gun shot wound and was gassed. Here ended his combat days and after his recovery, he was transferred to the Third Indiana Adjutant General Office (AGO) in France, under General Pershing.
He completed his term of service and returned to the states where he was discharged November 4, 1919 at Camp Meg's, Washington DC. Upon his discharge, Sergeant Butell received $125.52 payment , which included a $60 bonus and a silver victory button as an overseas veteran.