Garland Langhorn Spain
Submitted by: Jacob Parks, Administrative Support Specialist, The Country Doctor Museum
Garland Langhorn Spain born around 1890, Garland Spain 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
Garland Langhorn Spain was born on July 17, 1890 in the small community of Jarrett’s Depot in Sussex County, Virginia to Benjamin and Josephine Gates Spain. By 1910, Garland Spain continued living in Virginia and worked as a farmer to support his widowed mother.
For reasons that are unclear, Spain relocated to Rocky Mount, N.C., where he lived at the time of his registration for World War I on June 5, 1917.
Garland Spain was inducted into military service with the U.S. Army on September 20, 1917 and took up arms as a corporeal with Company E of the 322nd Infantry, 81st Division. After training, Spain set sail on the troop transport ship Helenus on July 31, 1918 from Brooklyn, New York to Europe.
Spain received severe wounds while fighting in the Great War. Either on November 9 or 11, 1918, Garland Spain was shot twice while advancing on six German machine guns that wounded the rest of Spain’s squadron near Moranville, France.
Even though the Armistice was signed on November 11, 1918, troops on each side were not aware of peace talks until later, and even then, many American troops continued serving overseas for several months after the end of the war. Corporeal Spain returned to the United States on April 28, 1919 and received the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions in the concluding days of World War I.
After the war, Garland Spain lived at Fort McPherson in Fulton, Georgia until he relocated back to North Carolina, by which time he married Venie Brooks in Ayden on May 9, 1926. After their wedding, the young couple lived in Rocky Mount for a short time. By 1930, however, the Spain family lived in Kinston, N.C. where Garland and Venie had two children at that time, Albert L. and Etta L. Spain. Venie Brooks Spain had been married and had children (Don W. Brooks, Thomas Brooks, Melba G. Brooks) before marrying Garland Spain. As such, the Spain household was home to these children as well as Venie’s nephew named Teabo J. Baker. By 1940, Venie Spain died, leaving Garland widowed with another child the couple had before her passing, Garland W. Spain.
Garland L. Spain continued living in Rocky Mount, North Carolina until his death on February 23, 1959. Spain was buried at the Pineview Cemetery in Rocky Mount.