Riveters African American Soldiers 1 The pilots African American Officers Mule Rearing gas masks pilots in dress uniforms doughboys with mules

Dispatch Newletter

The WWI Centennial Dispatch is a weekly newsletter that touches the highlights of WWI centennial and the Commission's activities. It is a short and easy way to keep tabs on key happenings. We invite you to subscribe to future issues and to explore the archive of previous issues.

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March 6, 2018

Legion WInter Meeting

WW1CC & Memorial maquette on hand for the American Legion's big week in DC

Last week was a big one for our Commission member organizations, the American Legion. Over 200 members of their national leadership were in Washington, DC for their annual Winter Conference at the Washington Hilton, with such featured speakers as Secretary of Veterans Affairs David J. Shulkin. Following several days of meetings, the Legion leadership conducted their massive annual 'Storm The Hill' outreach effort to members of Senate and Congress. In the midst of it all, the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission was there, telling the story of our programs, including the new National World War I Memorial at Pershing Park in Washington DC. The Legion invited us to set up the scale-model maquette created by our sculptor Sabin Howard, and recently featured on television's "FOX & FRIENDS." Read more about the maquette's appearance at the Legion meeting.


American Women in World War I

Throughout Women's' History Month in March, 2018 we'll be featuring stories of women who served and supported the war effort a century ago.

Vashti Bartlett

WW1CC intern Nicole Renna writes this week about Vashti Bartlett, a Maryland native who was a Johns Hopkins Hospital Training School for Nurses 1906 graduate, and proudly served the Allied forces as a nurse in World War I, both as a Red Cross nurse and a member of the Army Nurse Corps. Read more about her proud service to the nation here.

New Hampshire Women's History Month

Elsewhere, Janice Brown on the Cow Hampshire web site notes that "When we think of World War I, most of us picture the men in military uniform readying for battle. Women played as great a part in everything. Some women served as yeowomen, nurses, telephone operators and others who were often at the battlefield and subject to the same grave dangers of bombs, gas and disease. The women left behind experienced great hardships, but also it was a door of opportunity for them."  Read more about the Women's History Month program on Brown's New Hampshire History Blog.

Yeomen

On the National Council for the Social Studies socialstudies.org web site, Carl and Dorothy Schneider write that "American women experienced this 'Great War' differently than any previous war. For the first time, the Army and Navy nurse corps were activated. It was the first American war in which no woman enlisted as a foot soldier disguised as a man, for it introduced thorough physical examinations. Yet it was the first war in which women officially and openly served in the Navy, the Marine Corps, and the Army Signal Corps. For the first time in the history of the world, 25,000 women, 15,000 of them civilians, crossed a hostile ocean to succor war's victims-many of them long before the United States entered the war. Women struck out on their own like entrepreneurs, finding their own ways to help people and seeking the money and capital to accomplish their goals." Read the entire in-depth essay about American women in WWI here.

Hello Girl medal

Two hundred twenty-three women served as telephone operators in the U.S. Army Signal Corps during World War I. These were the first women to serve as soldiers in the U.S. Army, specifically in non-nursing roles. Eric Saul, veteran Historian and Museum Director, writes about the extensive J'Ecoute exhibition he mounted decades ago at the U.S. Army's  Presidio Museum in California, honoring and recognizing the "Hello Girls" and awarding some of the still-living veterans their long-awaited World War I Victory Medals. Read more about the J'Ecoute exhibition and the presentation ceremonies for the medals here.


2018 flu bug is similar to 1918 outbreak but still with significant differences

Libby O'Connell

The ferocious flu outbreak that circumnavigated the globe in 1918 has eerie parallels to the epidemic sweeping across the United States now, but medical and history experts said despite each arriving 18 years into new centuries, the two influenzas differ significantly. World War I Centennial Commission Commissioner Libby O’Connell was one of several experts who spoke at a news briefing last week at the Museum of American Armor in Old Bethpage, NY. Read more on the experts' take the 1918 pandemic, the worst flu outbreak in history, and the current flu strain gripping the world.


Eruption of anti-German hysteria in WWI wiped out German culture in America

Edison Park anti-German sign

In 1918 an eruption of anti-German hysteria virtually wiped out German culture in the US, shaking an increasingly divided country as it drifted into the war in Europe. The giant German ethnic minority that had long been such an important, influential, and integral pillar of fin-de-siècle society came under sudden attack from jingoistic Americans determined to do their part “over here” in the fight “over there” against Kaiser Wilhelm’s Germany. Author Erik Kirschbaum shares his thoughts from Berlin about how "when the war ended there was little left of the German-American culture."  Elsewhere, Jenni Salamon of the Ohio History Connection writes about how Ohio, where the German-American immigrant population was over 200,000 by 1900, and with even more Ohioans claiming German ancestry, was particularly vulnerable to anti-German sentiment.


District of Columbia National Guard commemorates World War I in 2018

DC Guard Logo

During the centennial of the end of World War I, the District of Columbia National Guard will host a series of special activities, programs, and events to commemorate the end to the first war. Approximately 400,000 National Guard Soldiers served in the Great War, among them were 2,000 Guardsmen from the District of Columbia. “As we mark 100 years of the end of World War I, we reflect back on the many contribution and sacrifices made by the Soldiers of the District of Columbia National Guard; citizen-Soldiers who answered the call to protect the Capital and defend the nation in time of great need,” said Brig. Gen. William J. Walker, acting commanding general, District of Columbia National Guard. Read more about the District of Columbia National Guard’s centennial commemoration activities here.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  

Available on our web site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

Two Veteran WW1 Nurses - Not your image of white frocked angels

Episode #61
Highlights: Healers of WW1

 March Preview - Roundtable with Dr. Edward Lengel, Katherine Akey & Theo mayer | @02:15

 Spoils of War from Russia - Mike Shuster | @13:10

 Medicine in WW1 - Charles Van Way, George Thompson & Sanders Marble | @18:30

 New VSO WW1 support site @ ww1cc.org/veteran | @26:00

 African American nurses in WW1 - Dr. Marjorie DesRosier | @27:35

 100C/100M project from Raymond WA - Gordon Aleshire | @33:25

 Women Physicians in WW1 - Eliza Chin, Keri Kukral & Mollie Marr | @36:50

 Speaking WW1 - “Archie” | @43:10

 WW1 War Tech - The Browning Machine Gun | @45:05

 WWrite Blog on Brest-Litovsk Treaty | @47:10

 American War Artist and his curator - Katherine Akey | @48:10


Doughboy MIA for week of March 5

George P Storm

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

 

Monday's MIA this week is Battalion Sergeant-Major George P. Storm. Born in September 1879, George Storm enlisted at Allentown, Pennsylvania on December 6, 1898, served through several enlistment periods and was a professional soldier. In August, 1917, he was assigned to the 16th Infantry and with them went to France. On 4 October, 1918, during the Meuse-Argonne campaign, when his battalion had made an advance outside Exermont, Sergeant-Major Storm stayed behind to wrap up activities at the battalion’s old post of command. Once his duties were complete there, he set out through violent shellfire to the new PC position. However, shortly after setting out from the old PC, he was killed by shellfire. At the time of his death, he was just two months from retirement.  Buried by the unit chaplain in a short stretch of trench near where he died, his grave had been well marked and noted at headquarters. However, when GRS searched for the grave location post war they were unable to locate it. Despite a second search, Sergeant-Major Storm remains missing to this day. In 2015, Mr. Jay Perkins of the 1st Division Museum at Wheaton, Illinois brought the case to Doughboy MIA. Since then we have dug into the case extensively and believe that the recovery of Battalion-Sergeant Major Storm’s remains are entirely possible using today's technology, and plans are in the works to attempt a retrieval.

Help us with this case – give ‘Ten for Them’. For just $10.00 you can have a hand in helping solve this and other cases.  Give 'Ten For Them' to Doughboy MIA and help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

charm necklace

Charm Pendant
$9.95

The question came up: "For Women's history month, do we have any commemorative items for them?". Well heck yea!.  

Proudly wearing the WWI 100 Years charm pendant is a fantastic conversation starter about WW1.

The satin nickel charm, worn on a necklace or bracelet, is a simple, yet meaningful, way to display your pride and remember those who sacrificed throughout our nation’s great history.

NOTE: This is the charm only. The necklace or bracelet is not included.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.


Take advantage of the
Matching Donation by the
Pritzker Military Museum and Library

Double Your Donation - Soldiers


Mary Alice Lamb

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

 

Mary Alice Lamb

 

Submitted by: Mary Rohrer Dexter

 

 

“Those who go forth ministering to the wants and necessities of their fellow beings experience a rich return, their souls being as a watered garden, and a spring that faileth not…” – Lucretia Mott

Tucked away in the South West corner of Miami County, Indiana is the small community of Amboy where in 1844, the first Friends Worship service was held in Miami County and six years later, a log church was erected at a location that would later be next to Amboy Friends Cemetery.  Until a school was built in 1872, the church doubled as a school.   In 1867, the Panhandle Railroad was completed through Miami County and the small town of Amboy was platted as the location of the train station.  

When, in 1871, Benjamin B. Lamb laid an addition to the original Amboy platt, his son Ezra must have been living in the area, for on July 28, 1878, Ezra Lamb and his wife Eliza were holding a beautiful baby girl in their arms whom they named Mary Alice.  

As she grew, Mary Alice probably attended school in Amboy at a building known as The Academy.  The years flew by and soon Mary Alice Lamb was attending school at Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana.  She graduated in 1901 with a teaching degree.  By this time, she was a young woman, 5’4 1/2” tall, sporting brown hair and brown eyes.  Known to her friends as Alice, her first teaching job was at Stit School, four miles from the home in which she grew up.  Every morning she would drive to school in a two-wheel cart pulled by a horse.  If it rained, she would wear water proof garments or pull into the nearest barn lot until the rain let up.  Sometimes, if the weather was very bad she would stay with the Stit family, on whose land the school was located.  

Read Mary Alice Lamb's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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February 27, 2018

Waldo Peirce Goes to War is a remarkable new WWI Blog about an American artist

Waldo Peirce

French woman Corine Reis has an incredible passion for the American volunteers who came and served in France before America joined the war. She maintains several pages, including this very detailed Tumblr blog.  The introduction to Corine’s Tumblr page dedicated to American artist Waldo Peirce goes like this:

"November 1915, World War 1 is savagely ripping Europe apart. Waldo Peirce, fresh Harvard graduate, impossibly handsome and talented artist, decides to leave his privileged life to join the American Field Service in France. He finds himself catapulted to the front of the bloodiest war zone ever, rescuing and transporting the wounded to safety, through treacherous battle grounds, in primitive ambulances. His heroism and bravery won him the French Croix de Guerre awarded by the French government to war heroes. The carnage and devastation he saw did not destroy his beautiful mind, because through it all, he kept on painting. "I must paint paint" as he wrote from the front to his mom in 1916 "I'm a painter from the top of my head to the soles of my feet --I know it-- I get a nervous thrill just to take my palette in my hands..." And it's how Waldo never lost his way. 100 years later, almost to the day, here are photographs with short captions of the war he saw."

Corine Reis

Corine Reis (right)  took some time to answer a few question about her blog for us. Read her responses about how she came to know about  Waldo Peirce in the first place (a family tie), and the challenges of doing research to "present these young American volunteers, and then the American soldiers, in the human context of this war."


World War I: African-American soldiers battled more than enemy forces

As African American History Month for 2018 wraps up on Wednesday, our web site features a number of articles chronicling the experiences, memories, and legacies of African Americans in U.S. military service during the Great War.

Lincoln poster

The Library of Congress exhibition Echoes of the Great War: American Experiences of World War I explores the role of  the over 350,000 African-Americans served overseas for the American Expeditionary Force (AEF) during the war and ways in which the international conflict contributed to a growing racial consciousness among black veterans.

369th

No African American troops experienced as much combat as those assigned to the French military, and none with more distinction than the famous soldiers of the 369th Infantry Regiment, who earned the nickname 'Hell Fighters of Harlem' from their German enemies. Author Stephen Harris writes extensively on the Army.mil web site about how the soldiers of the 369th proved their mettle and patriotism in combat.

Ward

 

African American WWI reenactor Algernon Ward’s recent “Storer College Students in World War I” lecture aimed to tie the events of a century ago to current events today. Storer College, the famed school for the formerly enslaved that operated from 1867 through 1955, supplied a disproportionate number of the African-Americans who fought for the U.S. in WWI, nicknamed the “Ebony Doughboys.” Ward noted that in recent years he’s seeing growing interest in African American involvement in The Great War. “Our participation in WWI battle re-enactments and our appearances at museums, parades, schools, libraries and historical sites have kept us busy,” he said. Read more about Ward’s “mission to tell the story of the contributions of African Americans” in America’s major conflicts of the 20th century. 


Medicine In World War I web site now live

Medicine in WWI

A century ago, American medicine went to war. It was a huge challenge.  Over a few months, an entire system of battlefield health care was organized.  Doctors, nurses, corpsmen, and many others were recruited and trained. People and equipment were transported to Europe by sea, through submarine-infested waters. Yet, it all worked--and our new Medicine In World War I web site tells the story of how the United States met this challenge. Curated by long-time military medicine experts George Thompson, Charles W. Van Way, III, and W. Sanders Marble, the site gives broad and detailed information on how the war changed military medicine, and military medicine affected the war. Check out the impressive new web site here, then check in later this week with the WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast to hear an interview with the curators.


In Her Words: Women's Duty and Service in World War I examines the motivation & conflicts of U.S. women's WWI service

signage

The exhibition In Her Words: Women’s Duty and Service in World War I at the National Postal Museum, follows the experience of four American women in the U.S. war effort through their own letters, journals and records. The exhibition project intended to delve into individuals’ records to gain understanding of women’s experiences from the war. By searching the extensive collection of the Women’s Memorial Foundation, as well as the Smithsonian's holdings, the curators discovered many fascinating letters and stories. Read our intern Betsy Sheppard's exploration of the exhibition here, then check out this article from the Smithsonian Insider here.


"They were all heroes as soon as they put themselves in harms way."

Mark Wilkins

Our friend Mark Wilkins is a historian, writer, museum professional, and master model-maker. He is serving as historical consultant and producer of aerial effects for an upcoming feature documentary on the Lafayette Escadrille. Mark recently created a story for AIR & SPACE Magazine, entitled "The Dark Side of Glory: An early glimpse of PTSD". The article found remarkable evidence of PTSD in the letters of World War I aces. He talked to us about the piece, about what he discovered, and his upcoming book on the subject of PTSD in World War I.


United Kingdom's 14-18 NOW agency announces 2018 commemoration events

14-18-NOW logo

The U.S. World War I Centennial Commission's partner arts organization in the UK, the famed 14-18 NOW, has announced the details of their final season of extraordinary arts experiences. These public art pieces are aimed at connecting people with the First World War. The slate of events includes new films by Peter Jackson and Danny Boyle, a Dazzle Ship in New York City Harbor, and much much more. 14-18 NOW is a five-year program of extraordinary arts experiences connecting people with the First World War.  Read more about how 14-18 NOW is working with arts and heritage partners all across the UK, as they commission new artworks from leading contemporary artists, musicians, designers and performers, inspired by the period 1914-18.


World War I Centennial 2018 Silver Dollar continues on sale until December 2018

Dollar

Sales of the limited edition World War I American Veterans Centennial Medals ended at the U.S. Mint last week, but sales of the Mint's collectible 2018 World War I Centennial Silver Dollar continue to December of 2018. This commemorative coin was authorized by Congress as a tribute to the American men and women who served during the war. Sales from the coin help support our centennial programs -- so the coin is a tangible way for people across the country to directly participate in America's World War I Centennial. Click here to find our more about and purchase the 2018 World War I Centennial Silver Dollar.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  

Available on our web site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

doughboys in gas masks

Episode #60
Highlights:

The Government's Expanding Power | @10:30

America Emerges: 1st Division learns tough lessons - Edward Lengel | @08:55

War in the Sky: First US planes get shipped to France | @13:15

GWP Blog: Wrapup on Tuscania  - Mike Shuster | @15:30

A Century in the Making: A busy week for the memorial project | @20:15

Remembering Veterans: the 370th Infantry Regiment - Colonel Eugene Scott | @24:00

Education: Poppy Program in middle school - Taylor Gibbs & Lyvia bartoli | @31:35

Speaking WW1: Camouflage | @36:55

WW1 War Tech: Depth Charge | @39:00

WWrite Blog: This Colored Man Is No Slacker | @41:00

Buzz: The flu then, the flu now - Katherine Akey | @42:05


Wwrite Blog Post This Week

Wwrite Blog Logo

Brest Litovsk - Eastern Europe's Forgotten Father

In his lifetime, the world-famous Polish ballerina, Vaslav Nijinsky, might have also claimed Russian, German, or Ukrainian nationality had he danced a few more steps to the right, or to the left. The future of Nijinsky's Europe–and his identity–was decided on March 3, 1918, in the town of Brest-Litovsk. This Saturday, March 3, 2018, marks the centennial of this event, an event veteran author, Adrian Bonenberger, calls "the moment" when "the old world falls apart, and creates space for the new to arise." 

In this week's WWrite post, Bonenberger gives us a rich overview of the Brest-Litovsk Treaty's implications for the former Soviet bloc countries, in Eastern Europe for yesterday and today. Not to miss!


Doughboy MIA for week of February 26

Ahern

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday's MIA this week is Ensign John B. Ahern, US Navy. Assigned to the USS Ticonderoga, Ensign Ahern was among the 112 sailors and US Army artillerymen replacements who went down on their way to France when the ship was torpedoed the morning of September 30th, 1918. Part of a 6-ship convoy element, the Ticonderoga developed engine trouble on the night of the 29th, fell further and further behind the rest of the convoy, and found itself all but isolated as the sun rose on the 30th. Just as the last of the main element of the convoy slipped from sight, a German U-boat surfaced and began to engage the ship with her deck guns around 5:35 am, setting the Ticonderoga afire and killing 50% of the ships compliment right off. What remained of the men aboard tried to arrest the flames and partially succeeded, but the cost in life was heavy. Nevertheless, by 8:00 am it was all over and just a handful of survivors in the few undamaged lifeboats watched the 6,000 ton ship slide stern first under the waves. Ensign John B. Ahern was not among them.

Can you spare just ten dollars? Giving 'Ten For Them' to Doughboy MIA will help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Metal sign collection

SPECIAL OFFER: Now you can get the entire collection for only $35 (less than $10 each)

We created a series of wonderful turn-of-the-century 8" X 12" metal replica signs that capture the era of "The War That Changed The World" in an unusual and light humored way. It includes:

  • In 1917 it was proven that Angels do exist (about nurses)
  • It took courage to face one - it took even more to operate one (about tanks)
  • The Enemy was trying to kill them - and they swear the cooks were too! (about chow)
  • and one of the favorites: They flew on a wing and a prayer - because they flew without parachutes (about pilots)

Take a look at the collection by clicking here or on the image! 

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.


Take advantage of the
Matching Donation by the
Pritzker Military Museum and Library

Double Your Donation - Soldiers


Annie Frasier Norton

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

Annie Frasier Norton

 

Submitted by: T.J. Cullinane {community historian}

 

 

Annie Frasier Norton born in 1893. Annie Norton served in World War 1 with the United States Navy. The enlistment was in 1918 and the service was completed in 1918.

“We Conquer by Degrees”

A young New Hampshire woman who died in service remains a beloved community icon.

Yeoman (F) Second Class Annie Fraser Norton, (April 10, 1893 - October 10, 1918), is remembered in New Hampshire as the first woman from the Granite State to give her life for her country, which may not be entirely true. Be that as it may, she was without a doubt a breaker of glass ceilings and remains to this day a beloved icon in the in the town of Derry’s pantheon of heroes. The unseemly debate surrounding her demise is centered on the military status of the Army nurses that perished before her. They are currently seen as military contractors and thus, rightly or wrongly, not eligible for the accolades reserved for those who died as sworn members of the armed forces.

This controversy should in no way distract from the enormous contribution Annie and her fellow “Yeomanettes” made to the ultimate victory of the United States and the Allies during the First World War. As we examine Annie’s upbringing, it would seem that service to a greater good was somewhat of a tradition in the Frasier family.

Read Annie Frasier Norton's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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February 20,2018

Fox and Friends

'Fox & Friends' TV show airs segment about the National World War I Memorial 

On Friday, February 16, TV's 'FOX & FRIENDS' morning show taped a studio segment featuring the new National World War I Memorial at Pershing Park in Washington DC. The show segment aired on Tuesday, February 20.  You can watch the segment online here: http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/fox-and-friends/index.html. WWI Centennial Commission Chair Terry Hamby and sculptor Sabin Howard represented the Commission, and talked about the project's progress with 'FOX & FRIENDS' host Steve Doocy. They unveiled -- for the first time on national television -- the new scale-model maquette, which depicts the memorial's sculptural design concept. Read more about the show segment on the Memorial, and the new sculptural maquette here.


Design for new National WWI Memorial continues regulatory reviews in DC

Snip of maquette

On Thursday, 15 February, the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission publicly presented its updated plan for a Memorial to be integrated into Pershing Park in Washington, DC. The presentation included artist Sabin Howard's scale-model sculptural maquette for the new National World War I Memorial. The presentation was for the benefit of the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts (CFA), as part of scheduled regulatory reviews of the memorial's design concept by oversight agencies, which include the U.S. National Park Service (NPS), and the National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC). Reaction to the presentation was generally positive, with CFA Chair Earl Powell saying that  the project’s design “has come a long way.” Read more about the public briefing to the oversight agencies here.


Honoring African American women who served in the Army Nurse Corps in WWI

African American Nurses

Eighteen African American women served in the Army Nurse Corps stateside during World War I. These nurses all came from Freedmen's Hospital, now Howard University Hospital, in Washington DC, and were assigned to Camp Sherman, in Chillicothe, Ohio. Their full story is not well known, but their courage in overcoming the barriers to being able to serve still resonates today. Read more about how, despite the oppressive climate of that day, these women chose to serve their county during its hour of need.

Frances Reed Elliott

The story of one African American World War I Nurse, Frances Reed Elliott Davis of North Carolina, is particularly poignant. The orphaned illegitimate daughter of a white woman and a half-Cherokee, half-black sharecropper, she faced and overcame enormous challenges to develop the characteristics that carried her through tougher times: perseverance, self-confidence, initiative, and hard work. She put herself through nurses’ training at the Freedmen’s School of Nursing, and was ready when World War I came. Read how Frances became the first officially registered African American nurse in the Red Cross, and went on to serve her nation in WWI and beyond.


New documentary about WWI female telephone operators debuts March 1

Hello Girls

They were known as the "Hello Girls" — American women fluent in French and English who answered the urgent call for telephone operators needed in France during World War I. They took oaths to join the U.S. Army Signal Corps, underwent training by AT&T before boarding ships to Europe, heading to war before most of the American Doughboys arrived in France, connected 26 million calls and ultimately proved to be a significant factor in winning the war. And then their service was largely forgotten. Now, Jim Theres, a Racine, WI native, is helping the nation remember. Theres'’ one-hour documentary “"The Hello Girls"” will premiere March 1 at the Women’s Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery, 100 years after the first contingent of women sailed to France. Read more about the Hello Girls movie and their contribution to the U.S. war effort in WWI here.


Yale exhibit explores the struggle over American identity during World War I

No Slacker

The “An American and Nothing Else: The Great War and the Battle for National Belonging” exhibition opened on Feb. 12 in the Memorabilia Room at Yale’s Sterling Memorial Library. The show examines the America’s involvement in World War I from the perspective of the country’s most marginalized residents, particularly African Americans and immigrant communities. The exhibit explores the patriotic fervor surrounding the nation’s war mobilization which occurred against a backdrop of protest, racial violence, and nativism on the home front. About one-third of Americans at the time were immigrants or the children of immigrants. Jim Crow controlled the South and the Great Migration of southern blacks to northern cities was underway. It was a period of upheaval and hypocrisy in which the United States proclaimed itself a beacon of freedom and democracy while subjecting many of its own people to injustice and oppression. Read more about the “An American and Nothing Else" exhibition at Yale University here.


World War I's legacy mixed in Montana

Harry Fritz

The most significant result of World War I: The world as it is now, the good and bad. A less noted consequence was closing hours for the bars in Butte, said Harry Fritz, a popular and award-winning history professor at the University of Montana, in a lecture last week at Great Falls College-Montana State University. "Many in Montana thought it (entering the war) was a mistake, and there are a number of historians who would second that, but my perspective is Germany was torpedoing American ships and killing Americans so what were we supposed to do?" Fritz said. Read more of this insightful and irreverent look at how WWI affected Montana and the other western states here.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo

The weekly WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration. 

Available on our web site, iTunes, Google Play, TuneIn  and smart speakers.

A cartoon from the Stars and Stripes newspaper vs2

Episode #59

Wilson vs William:

Wilson vs William | @ 01:25

Stars and stripes launches | @ 07:30

War in the sky - AirMail | @ 08:50

America Emerges - 32nd Red Arrow Division - Dr. Edward Lengel | @ 10:45

Great War Project - German Homefront - Mike Shuster | @ 15:40

Commission News - Service Medals NOW | @ 20:15

Remembering Veterans - 371st Regiment - Sonya Grantham | @ 22:05

Speaking WWI - Doughboy Dictionary | @ 29:50

International Report - Brazil in WWI - Matheus Lacerda | @ 31:35

WW1 War Tech - Synthetic Rubber | @ 38:15

Articles & Posts - Freddie Stowers and Pyjamas | @ 39:55

Valentine’s Special - letters, stories and music | @ 42:25

The Buzz - Katherine Akey | @ 47:30


Wwrite Blog Post This Week

Wwrite Blog Logo

This week's post is "The Colored Man is No Slacker." 

In 1919, this slogan on a WWI-era poster inspired two young African American sisters from West Virginia to write and publish a book of poems whose sole intention, they wrote, was "to show the Negro’s loyalty to the stars and stripes in the war with Germany and to show the need of unity of all men in the fight for democracy." 

Don't miss this post about the exciting discovery of Ada and Ethel Peters' courageous literary work.


Doughboy MIA for week of February 19th

Corporal Edward James Malone

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday's MIA this week is Corporal Edward James Malone, ASN1706748, Company K/307th Infantry/77th Division. Corporal Malone was hit in the neck by machine gun fire on September 9th, 1918 during an advance in the Vesle sector and died in the arms of his best friend, Private Harold Cronin, a few minutes later. Malone was buried on the battlefield by his squad with a marked grave and identification was included with the remains, but when GRS went to find him following the war, they were unable to locate him. Doughboy MIA has recently opened a fresh investigation on Corporal Malone's case.

Can you spare just ten dollars? Give 'Ten For Them' to Doughboy MIA and help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Victory Pin

U.S. Victory lapel pin $4.95

One of our constant favorite WWI commemorative items...

Returning Soldiers received Victory buttons upon their discharge from service in “the Great War”. Hand cast in jeweler’s alloy and hand finished in a satin bronze patina, the design features the star, symbolizing victory, honor and glory; a wreath of evergreen laurel leaves symbolizing triumph over death; and the U.S. insignia, clearly identifying the country served. The World War 1 U.S. Victory lapel pin is a meaningful way to honor and remember the contributions made for our country one hundred years ago. 

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.


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Donald Chapman

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

Donald Chapman

 

Submitted by: Tish Wells {grand-niece}

Donald Chapman born around 1889. Donald Chapman served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1919.

 

The story of Donald Chapman

In November 1917, Donald Chapman, 28, wrote to his mother, Ella, living in Ithaca, New York, “I have not been called yet.” He was a prolific letter writer to his sister, Mildred, and his mother.

He had expected to be drafted at any time. The Selective Service Act had been enacted on May 18th, 1917.

In the meantime, he was working with automobiles in Detroit, Michigan, and thinking ahead. “If I do not have to go to war,” he wrote, “I can make a lot of money in the spring. Second-hand cars will sell like hotcakes, as they are cutting down on the output of new ones. 

On December 15, he’d taken advantage of an “opportunity to enlist at my trade as auto mechanic… in the Ordinance Dep.” of the Third Division.

Read Donald Chapman's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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February 13, 2018

Military Medals

Just one week left to order World War I Commemorative Medals from U.S. Mint

The window closes on February 20 (or sooner) to order the United States Mint's five different Silver Dollar and Military Medal Sets. Each set includes a proof silver dollar and a proof silver medal. The medals, available only in these sets, recognize the contributions of the Air Service, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, and Navy during World War 1. These sets, limited to 100,000 units across the five product options, can be ordered only until 3 p.m. on February 20, 2018, unless the limit is reached prior to that date. Production will be based on the orders received within this window. Fulfillment of these sets will begin in late May 2018.

Dollar

The United States Mint is producing the World War I Centennial Silver Dollar to commemorate the centennial of America’s involvement in World War I and honor the more than 4 million men and women from the United States who served. Purchases of the Dollar, available in both Proof and Uncirculated versions, will help build the new National World War I Memorial at Pershing Park in Washington, DC. The World War I Centennial Silver Dollar purchases are fulfilled immediately, and it will be on sale throughout 2018.


Corporal Freddie Stowers awarded Medal of Honor for service and sacrifice in WWI

 

Stowers

Corporal Freddie Stowers was an African-American war hero born in 1896 in Anderson County, South Carolina. Despite the discrimination he faced there, he made the decision to serve our country on the segregated 371st Infantry Regiment. He was serving as the squad leader in Company C of that regiment, in the 93d Infantry Division, during the attack on Hill 188, in the Champagne Marne Sector of France. He was killed in action that day, but his exceptional bravery and leadership lived on, earning him the Medal of Honor posthumously. Read the entire inspiring story of Corporal Freddie Stowers here.


National World War I Memorial sculptural maquette to make its national television debut on "Fox & Friends" Friday, Feb 16

Clapper Board

The new scale-model sculptural maquette, depicting the initial design concept for the new National World War I Memorial at Pershing Park in Washington, DC, will make its national television debut on the "Fox & Friends" program on Friday, February 16, in a segment airing sometime between 6:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. Commission Chair Terry Hamby, along with WWI Memorial sculptor Sabin Howard, will be on hand to discuss the Memorial and the sculpture for an enormous national television audience. Check it all out on the "Fox and Friends" program this Friday morning!


New Mexico WWI Centennial Commission formed with Governor Martinez as chair

New Mexico Commission

The New Mexico Department of Veterans Services has announced formation of the New Mexico World War I Centennial Commission to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.The  Commission, chaired by Governor Susan Martinez, will work locally on the National WWI Centennial Commission’s nationwide effort to educate Americans about the war. New Mexico’s commission will host events around the state highlighting New Mexico’s impact on the war and the sacrifices made by its citizens less than five years after becoming our nation’s 47th state. Read more about the new New Mexico Centennial Commission and its members here.


WWI’s Zeppelin bombings popularized the nightime fashion trend of ‘Pyjamas’

Pajamas

World War I introduced so many terrifying new ways to die, and chief among those was, of course, death by air. You didn’t even have to be a soldier. For Londoners, the threat began in January 1915, when the Germans sent Zeppelins loaded with bombs across the Channel. Eventually, they sent planes, too. The air raids, often at night, accomplished little tactically, but their true purpose was to terrorize civilians and try to sink British morale. Bringing the war to the home front, the raids intruded in the bedroom, the most private space of all. And thus, they had quite an effect on fashion. Read more about how, just days after the first Zeppelin raid over England, British women were already dressing for bed to be prepared to “meet the midnight world at a minute’s notice” -- and how those wartime bedtime wardrobe innovations still dress us for sleep a century later.


Service on Islay to remember the tragic sinking of troopship SS Tuscania in 1918

SS Tuscania service Islay

A service of commemoration has been held on the Scottish island of Islay to mark the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the troopship SS Tuscania, which carried more than 2,000 US soldiers at the end of World War One when it was torpedoed by a German U-boat close to the island. Many of the soldiers on board were saved and cared for by local people but more than 200 drowned, with the bodies washed up on the beaches of the small island. Services included a wreath-laying ceremony at the American Monument, and a memorial service at Kilnaughton Commonwealth War Graves Commission Cemetery, held at the grave of Private Roy Muncaster, the only US soldier still buried on the island. Read more about this solemn remembrance of a century-old military tragedy here.


New mural & exhibit in Tampa honors World War I crew of USCGC Tampa

USS Tampa

One hundred years after the sinking of the USS Tampa during World War I, a new mural was unveiled on February 3 honoring the more than 130 men - including 24 from Tampa Bay - who were killed when the ship was sunk by a German submarine. During a dedication ceremony at the the Tampa Bay History Center, Robin Gonzalez read each of the names of Tampa residents who were aboard the USS Tampa warship when it sunk in 1918. Afterwards, city leaders and descendants of those who died tossed memorial wreaths onto the water across from the history center. Read more about the ceremony and the mural, all part of a community effort to ensure that the USS Tampa "will never be forgotten again."


Herbert Hoover’s Meatless, Wheatless World War I diet way ahead of its time?

Alcazar cake

So you’ve started a vegetarian, gluten-free diet, but did you remember to complete your pledge card to send to the U.S. Food Administration? This is — of course — no longer a reality, but 100 years ago it was, when Herbert Hoover suggested changes to the American diet to support the war effort. When Hoover became the “food czar” in April 1917 upon America’s entry into World War I, the U.S. Food Administration had been created to encourage patriotic conservation of certain ingredients for the war effort. Since his recent stint as chairman of the Commission for Relief in Belgium, Hoover understood the logistics behind a large-scale food operation. Read more about how Hoover’s USFA, in order to supply hearty non-perishables — beef, wheat, and sugar — to American soldiers and Allies overseas, asked for cooperative (and gustatory) sacrifice from civilians.

Other Links:

Hear about this on the Podcast: Episode #58

Read President Wilson's actual proclamation from the Official Bulletin Page #3


George Kenney, Aviator and American Hero Who Fought In Both World Wars

George Kenney

Every soldier who puts his life on the line is a true hero. However, some amazing souls go the extra mile and really reach for the stars in their service to their country. One of them is George Kenney, a US Army Air Force General. Kenney not only mastered his position for 30 years as a true professional, but he took part in multiple battles – not to mention both World Wars – with gusto, earning him a decorated military record for his efforts. Once the US entered WWI in April 1917, Kenney found himself ready to become a part of history, earning numerous decorations in two wars as he blazed a trail of innovation and combat excellence in the skies for the United States. Read more about George Kenney and his aviation exploits here.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  

Available on our web site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

Library of Congress image of a US Army Soldier in the trenches from 1918

Episode #58
Food Will Win The War:

Food Will Win The War - an overview | @01:55

History through the lens of Food - Dr. Libby O’Connell  | @05:40

War in the sky | @10:30

America Emerges - Dr. Edward Lengel | @11:45

Great War Project - Mike Shuster | @17:25

Great War Channel on Youtube - Indy Neidell & Flo Wittig | @21:05

Family’s History - Ambassador Carol Moseley Braun | @29:25

Remembering Veterans - Dr. Richard Slotkin | @34:30

A Century in the Making - Maquette on Fox and Friends | @42:45

Speaking WWI - Hooverized Recipes | @44:45

States - Ohio web site - Amy Rohmiller | @46:10

The Buzz - Katherine Akey | @52:25


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Navy service coin set

World War I Commemorative Centennial 2018 Silver Dollar and NAVY Medal Set

ORDER NOW. $99.95

The COIN design, titled “Soldier’s Charge,” depicts an almost stone-like soldier gripping a rifle. Barbed wire twines in the lower right hand side of the design. Inscriptions include “LIBERTY,” “1918,” and “IN GOD WE TRUST.”

Navy coin face

The NAVY SERVICE MEDAL design depicts a U.S. Navy destroyer on escort duty after deploying a depth charge in defense of a convoy. Above, kite balloons provide Navy personnel a platform to spot submarines and other dangers. The inscription “OVER THERE!,” is at the bottom of the design.

Navy coin back

The reverse design depicts an Officer’s Cap Device* used in World War I. The inscriptions are “UNITED STATES NAVY,” “2018,” and “CENTENNIAL OF WORLD WAR I.”

These sets are limited to 100,000 units across all five medal product options, and can be ordered only until 3 p.m. ET on February 20, 2018, unless the limit is reached prior to that date. Production will be based on the orders received within this window. Fulfillment of these sets will begin in late May 2018.

Produced by the US Mint, the World War I Centennial 2018 Uncirculated Silver Dollar, the Proof Silver Dollar and the 5 service medal combination sets are all available for a limited time directly from the US Mint.


Take advantage of the
Matching Donation by the
Pritzker Military Museum and Library

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Clarence Mathias Hensel 

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

Clarence Mathias Hensel


Submitted by:
T.J. Cullinane, community historian

 

 

Ohio farmer Clarence Mathias Hensel was a soldier of the Great War serving as an infantryman in both the 84th “Rail-splitter” Division and the 78th “Lightning” Division.

Clarence was born on April 16, 1893 to John Hardin and the former Elizabeth Casper in Cessna Township, a small community located in Hardin County in northwestern Ohio. From his draft registration card we learn that Clarence was 24 years old when America entered the World War One and was employed as a farmer on the farm belonging to his father, John Hensel. The farm was located on Rural Route Number 4 in Kenton. Kenton lays claim to great American military heritage as John Wilson Parrot, a Union soldier and the first recipient of the Medal of Honor, would call Kenton home after the Civil War.

Clarence was of medium height and medium build with blue eyes and dark hair. He noted on his registration card that he had weak eyes. In spite of his defective eye sight, Clarence was inducted into the U.S. Army on June 28, 1918 and given serial number 3533412.

Read Clarence Mathias Hensel's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.


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February 6, 2018

Commission shares U.S. Mint WWI commemorative coin with key partners

Coin in box

A few days ago, the U.S. Mint opened sales for their new collective 2018 World War I Centennial Silver Dollar. This new coin was authorized by Congress as a tribute to the American men and women who served during the war. Sales from the coin help support our centennial programs -- so the coin is a tangible way for people across the country to directly participate in America's World War I Centennial. Since that opening sales day, our Centennial Commission has had the honor of sharing this new silver dollar with a few of our commemorative partners, organizations who help veterans and their families every day, and groups who remember and tell the story of America's sacrifice during World War I. Read more about the Commission's WWI Commemorative Silver Dollar organizational gifts here.


New "Ohio in World War I" web site goes live!

Ohio web site logo

Welcome Ohio!  The Ohio World War I Centennial Committee's new website is now officially operational at the URL ww1cc.org/ohio At the new "Ohio  in World War I" web site you will find information and photos that tell the story of Ohio in the Great War, as well as an event calendar, a timeline, and a growing map of the state’s World War One monuments, memorials, and historical sites. Ohio joins a growing number of state sites hosted by the U.S. World War One Centennial Commission. To see the other states’ sites, click here.

Amy Rohmiller

Amy Rohmiller of the Ohio Committee gave us an interview this week about how the site came to be, and what the Ohio group is doing to commemorate the Centennial--click here to check it out.  And listen to an interview with Amy on the weekly WW1 Centennial News Podcast. We invite you to register for the WW1 Centennial News podcast live show or download here.


The Role of African Americans in WWI

African American Soldiers

Fifty years after the end of the Civil War, the nation’s 9.8 million African Americans held a tenuous place in society. Ninety percent of African Americans lived in the South, most trapped in low-wage occupations, their daily lives shaped by restrictive “Jim Crow” laws and threats of violence. But the start of World War I in the summer of 1914 opened up new opportunities and changed American life and culture forever. “Recognizing the the significance of World War I is essential to developing a full understanding of modern African-American history and the struggle for black freedom,” argues Chad Williams, Associate Professor of African Studies at Brandeis University. Read more about the pivotal effects of WWI on African American history here.


New National Postal Museum Exhibition Celebrates Women’s Service in WWI

Nurse WWI

“In Her Words: Women’s Duty and Service in World War I” opened Feb. 2 at the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum. The exhibition, open through May 8, offers a glimpse into the lives of four women serving in and alongside the American military during World War I. Through letters, uniforms, ID badges, notebooks and other authentic objects, the exhibition reveals the wartime experiences, personalities and aspirations of two U.S. Army Nurses, a U.S. Navy Yeoman and a YMCA worker. Visitors will learn about and see evidence of the work these women performed and the circumstances in which they served. Read more about this new Smithsonian exhibition here.


St. Lawrence Student receives national, international attention for WWI research

Tanveer Kalo

Tanveer Kalo, a former intern at the World War I Centennial Commission, was previously profiled in the May 16 and August 29 issues of DISPATCH last year, continues to draw attention for his research into Indian Americans who served in the U.S. Armed Forces in WWI. The local Watertown, NY Ledger recently interviewed Tanveer, and discovered that even in small-town New York, there are connections to be found with Indian Americans who served their new nation in the Great War a century ago. Read the entire newspaper interview here.


Frank Luke, Jr.: The Most Valuable Contributing Flying Ace in World War I

Frank Luke Jr.

In World War I, attacking through the air was a brand new form of warfare; it provided for various tactical uses such as reconnaissance, air superiority and close air support of ground troops. During this time period, two bold aviators, Edward V. Rickenbacker and Frank Luke, Jr were pioneers on this new front of technology in the war. While each man made a sacrifice and risked his life in the hopes of making a difference in the war’s outcome, Frank Luke, Jr. was the pilot who made the most valuable contribution to the War effort in World War I due to his personal sacrifice and the mission he carried out during his flying career. Read the entire analysis of  Luke's aviation combat legacy here.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  

Available on our web site, iTunes, Google Play, and TuneIn.

Base Hospital No. 59, in France where Josephine Heffernan served.

Episode 57
Highlights:

Feb. ‘18 overview - Ed Lengel, Katherine Akey, Theo Mayer | @01:40

War In The Sky 1918 preview - RG Head | @11:20

Fighting in Russia - Mike Shuster | @18:20

Harlem’s Rattlers - Dr. Jeffrey Sammons | @22:40

A Century in the Making - The maquette arrives in DC | @30:00

Speaking WWI - Attaboy! | @35:40

Nurse Josephine Heffernan - Dr. Marjorie DeRosier | @37:30

100C/100M Beaverton Michigan - Ed Rachwitz & Scott Govitz | @43:25

WWI War Tech - Gas Masks | @47:55

Articles & Posts - Dazzle Camo & S.S. Tuscania sinks | @49:45

The Buzz - WWI Social Media - Katherine Akey | @51:55


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Army Medal Set

World War I Commemorative Centennial 2018 Silver Dollar and Army Medal Set 

FOR A LIMITED TIME ONLY: These combination coin and service medal sets will only be available until Feb. 20, 2018

ORDER NOW. $99.95

The COIN design, titled “Soldier’s Charge,” depicts an almost stone-like soldier gripping a rifle. Barbed wire twines in the lower right hand side of the design. Inscriptions include “LIBERTY,” “1918,” and “IN GOD WE TRUST.”

Army Obverse

The SERVICE MEDAL design depicts a soldier cutting through German barbed wire while a second soldier aims a rifle amid a shattered landscape of broken trees and cratered earth. A shell explodes in the distance.

Army Reverse

The reverse design depicts the United States Army emblem, which was also in use during World War I. Inscriptions include “OVER THERE!,” “CENTENNIAL OF WORLD WAR I,” “2018,” and “UNITED STATES ARMY.”

These sets are limited to 100,000 units across all five medal product options, and can be ordered only until 3 p.m. ET on February 20, 2018, unless the limit is reached prior to that date. Production will be based on the orders received within this window. Fulfillment of these sets will begin in late May 2018.

Produced by the US Mint, the World War I Centennial 2018 Uncirculated Silver Dollar, the Proof Silver Dollar and the 5 service medal combination sets are all available for a limited time directly from the US Mint.


Take advantage of the
Matching Donation by the
Pritzker Military Museum and Library

Double Your Donation - Soldiers


William Anderson

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of ww1cc.org

William Anderson

 

Submitted by: Nathaniel Jenkins, Jr. {grandson}

 

 

My grandfather, William Anderson, a South Carolina native, was a real American War Hero. He was a quiet and warm man, a jack-of-all-trades born in the late1800s, and he lived a humble life in Asheville, North Carolina. He was part of an all-black regiment that fought with French soldiers against the Germans during World War I.

 

When my mother would take me and my sisters to visit him, he would frequently show us his medal that he had tucked away in an old tarnished tin Sucrets box. The medal, shaped like an Iron Cross backed by crossed swords, was marred with time; and it had an aged green and red ribbon attached. My grandfather would beam with pride every time he displayed the medal, but as little kids we didn’t fully understand the significance of his pride. Apparently, he wanted his grandchildren and great-grandchildren to know what he'd done--and to be proud of him. 

Many years later, I discovered that Grandfather Anderson's efforts on the battlefield earned him a coveted French medal, the Croix de Guerre or Cross of War, for bravery in combat action. That's the same honor given Audie Murphy, the most decorated American combat soldier of World War II.

Read William Anderson's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here. 


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