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DISPATCH: October 3, 2017

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October 3, 2017

First fifty 'WWI Centennial Memorials' announced by 100 Cites/100 Memorials 

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On September 27th, the United States World War One Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum & Library announced the first 50 official “WWI Centennial Memorials” from 100 Cites/100 Memorials program. Although the 100 Cities / 100 Memorials program submission period lasted a full year, from July 2016 to July 2017, since the April 6 centennial of the U.S. declaration of war and the subsequent national awakening about World War I, the interest and focus on local WWI memorials around the country has had a large resurgence. Rather than simply extending the submission period, the 100 Cities / 100 Memorials program Executive Committee has resolved to select and to name the first 50 awardees now, and then to re-open a new submission period. Read more about the first round selections, and about round two.

"Make sure that those U.S. service men and women who served are not forgotten by this and future generations."

Jerry Michaud

One of our great partners in the effort to create the new National World War I Memorial is the Roll of Honor Foundation, a nonprofit charity with the mission of honoring the military service of the men and women of America’s Armed Forces, educating the public about their legacy and encouraging public service among the next generation. The Foundation provides the Roll of Honor -- an online registry of U.S. service persons -- which allows former military members and their families to display their military experience, records of achievement and photos in a digital visual biography. In partnership with the United States World War One Centennial Commission, the World War I Roll of Honor features profiles of many of the more than 4 million American service persons who responded to the call of “Over There” in support of the war-weary Allies and helped achieve victory in "The War That Changed the World." We spoke to Jerry Michaud, who created the profile platform for the Roll of Honor Foundation, to hear about their efforts regarding World War I veterans.

"The volunteers' commitment to the cause they were defending rarely, if ever, wavered."

David Hanna

Before America joined World War I, a small group of Americans volunteered for the French Foreign Legion to help defeat the Central Powers. In his book Rendezvous with Death, historian David Hanna profiles seven of these volunteers: a poet, an artist, a boxer, a stunt pilot, a college student, a veteran of the Spanish American War, and an advertising executive. All seven men were united in courage; and some, like poet Alan Seeger, paid the ultimate sacrifice. Now Hanna has built a section about The American Volunteers of 1914 on the U.S. World War One Centennial Commission web site. The Rendezvous with Death site provides additional information, from both American and international sources, about the Volunteers. We talked to David about his book, the new site, what he learned personally while researching the volunteers.

Six U.S. WWI-era railcars rebuilt in France for the Centennial Commemoration


Trains and Traction: Le Train des Mouettes, a French train association, is rebuilding six United States World War I railcars. These train cars were originally constructed by U.S. Doughboys from the 35th Engineer Regiment in 1917-1918. 100 years ago, the Doughboys of the 35th Engineers worked to assemble railcars in order to move supplies and men to the front lines. Across France, U.S. Army Engineers would assemble thousands of rail cars, and create a brand new railway system. Train des Mouettes is working to complete all six rail cars before the end of the Centennial. Read more about this rolling tribute to the past help that came to France from the United States in WWI.

Auguste Rodin inspired more emotion in the World War I Memorial sculpture


2017 year marks the centennial of  sculptor Auguste Rodin’s death. It gives us ample opportunity to re-think this larger-than-life sculptor. Museums around the world are celebrating Rodin’s legacy.  Rodin continues to influence artists today -- including Sabin Howard, the sculptor for The National World War I Memorial at Pershing Park in Washington, DC.  Rodin created his later sculptures just before the start of World War I. Read more about how his work continues to act as a bridge for artistic sensibilities a century later.

"A clear breaking point in world history, and American history is no exception."


As part of our series on historical resources online, we wanted to showcase a remarkable YouTuber named Cypher, who hosts the channel "The Cynical Historian. Cypher is an offbeat, frank, and fresh, voice in the world of historical review -- and thorough his insight, he has earned a wide & enthusiastic following online, with nearly 40,000 subscribers. His latest episode was one that he produced as a commemorative partner with the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission. The episode discusses the lasting effects of World War I. We asked Cypher to talk about his channel, his current product, and what WWI has to teach us.

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

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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.

food will win the war

Highlights of Episode #39:

Food Will Win The War |@01:15

Anti-war sentiment and the IWW Union - Mike Shuster |@05:35

“Those Draftin’ Blues” Maceo Pinkard timely tune |@10:00

Terry Hamby elected Chair of the US WW1 Centennial Commission |@12:50

US Mint to introduce their memorial coin design |@14:00

Re-dedication of the Bernado Cardeens Baseball Field in RI |@14:40

Speaking WWI - OMG! Really!? |@16:15

100C/100M First 50 “WWI Centennial Memorials” announced |@17:40

100C/100M Project Profile - Swanton, OH with Mayor Ann Roth |@18:45

Researching Stories of Service with author Christy Leskovar |@24:00

Underwater Archeology - The WW1 Cruiser the USN San Diego |@29:30

WWrite Blog - Poet James Seamon Cotter Jr. by Connie Ruzich |@31:00

A BIG BUZZ this month |@32:00

Wwrite Blog Post This Week

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This week's post brings a fresh face to the WWI Italy described in  Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms. Author and veteran, Shannon Huffman Polson, takes us on a spellbinding trek through the Dolomites, where 689,000 Italians perished during the war. Following the footsteps of characters from Mark Helprin's novel, A Soldier of the Great War, Polson's beautiful prose leads us through the stark, striking landscape of one of Italian history's most indelible memories. A stunning narrative not to be missed!

Get your WWI Commemorative flags - just in time for "Veterans Day"

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It is only 39 days until Veterans Day!

That is just enough time to order a dozen of these fantastic WW1 Centennial Marker Flags for your local remembrance ceremonies.

This durable ground stake nylon flag measures 8 inches x 12 inches and commemorates the centennial of the "War that changed the world". You'll not only be remembering your local WW1 doughtboys, but you'll also be contributing to them all as part of the flag proceeds go to building America's WWI Memorial in Washington DC.

Or proudly fly the full size, 3 foot by 5 foot WW1 Centennial commemoration flag at your Veterans Day ceremony.

Either way, it is now #CountDownToVeteransDay and you have just enough time to get ready! Order your WWI Centennial Commemoration flags today.

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Maj. Gen. Walter G. Farrell, USMC

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


Maj. Gen. Walter G. Farrell, USMC


Submitted by: Dana Tibbitts



Maj. Gen. Walter G. Farrell served in World War 1 with the United States Marine Corps. The dates of service are: Known 1916-1946.

My grandfather, Major General Walter Greatsinger Farrell, best known as “Great,” joined the Marine Corps in 1917 after a brief stint in the Army. A consummate storyteller, Great fought in WWI and WWII, earning a Silver Star for “exceptional heroism against the Japanese.” Between wars he served in Haiti, Nicaragua, and later China, where he commanded the 3rd Marine Air Wing. In 1945, Farrell reported for duty at El Toro as deputy commander, 11th Naval District Air Bases.

‘Banana Wars’ author Ivan Musicant referred to Great as “the most fascinating man person I’ve ever met.” He was a resident of San Diego for more than 60 years. At the time of his death in 1990, Great was the oldest living naval aviator in the United States, and held two of the few pilot’s licenses signed by Orville Wright.

Read Walter G. Farrell's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

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