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WW1 Centennial News for Wednesday May 10, 2017 - Episode #19

WW1 MothersWW1 Mothers and their doughboys

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  • Feature: Mothers in WW1 | @ 00:45
  • Guest: Mike Shuster on poetry in the trenches | @ 06:30
  • War In The Sky: Colonel Rene Fonck | @ 10:15
  • Recipe: The Monkey Gland | @ 13:05
  • Guest: Nathan King on new National Park Service WW1 web site | @ 14:00
  • International: Albert Ball new journal released | @ 20:00
  • Media: Gordon Thomas Ward new single - “The Boys of 17” | @  21:30
  • Web: New WW1 Promotion Tool Kit at ww1cc.org/promotion | @ 25:00

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WW1 Centennial News - Weekly Podcast

World War One Centennial News:
May 10, 2017

Welcome to World War One Centennial News. It’s about WW1 news 100 years ago this week  - and it’s about WW1 NOW - news and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.
WW1 Centennial News is brought to you by the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum and Library. Today is May 3rd, 2017 and I’m Theo Mayer - Chief Technologist for the World War One Centennial Commission and your host today.

World War One THEN

100 Year Ago This Week

We have gone back in time 100 years. It is 1917 and we are coming up on Mother’s day.
Mothers always play a special and difficult role in war and WW1 is certainly no exception - let’s take take a look.
The motherhood image plays a key role in America’s recruitment campaigns - The war propaganda artists use mother figures to remind young men of their duty to their country and family, and to assure them of how proud their mothers and wives will be when they become soldiers.
One notable poster shows a mother and a wife embracing a newly minted recruit with the slogan: ‘They are proud of you. Be of proud of yourself!”
Another shows a mother inviting a reluctant young man forward with the slogan: GO. It’s your duty lad! Join today.
Mothers are the homefront resource managers - They are fundraisers for the war effort promoting war bonds, and raising money with bake sales and raffles, all the while - they conserve -  they keep the family home and life going - under sharp rationing of essential goods - and they are filling in all sorts of places - as American men take up soldiering.
Mothers are the healers as they nurse the wounded. A  world war 1 red cross propaganda poster shows a caring nurse with the slogan - “The Greatest Mother in the world”.
They are  also healers in another way. The devastating loss of life in World War I leaves many mothers with the heartbreaking task of mourning and memorializing their dead.
One of the memorial symbols is the Gold Star.
Families are hanging popular  “Man-in-Service” flags in their windows - red, white and a blue star -  mourning mothers cover that  blue star with gold fabric, symbolizing their loss.
Women are encouraged to forgo traditional mourning garb in favor of a simpler black armband with a gold star.
Woodrow Wilson refers to these women as the gold star mothers.
Moving forward 10 years to 1928, the organization American Gold Star Mothers is founded. To this day, mothers - who have lost a child in military service - wear - a gold star pin to honor the deceased.

Moving forward to the present, we addressed the difficult conflict of motherhood in war during the commission’s April 6 commemoration event “in Sacrifice for Liberty and Peace” with a medley sung in counterpoint .
Here is Chrissy Poland with “America, Here’s My Boy” and Ramona Dunlap with  “I Didn’t Raise My Boy To Be A Soldier”.

To mothers of soldiers everywhere - we salute you and thank you for bearing your gold star burden.

Great War Project

Joining us now is former NPR correspondent Mike Shuster from the Great War Project blog. This week Mike is going to cover a very thoughtful post from the great war project blog about poetry in the trenches.
Mike it seems like the very nature of this nearly unimaginable trench warfare is becoming as much a battle of the spirit as it is a combat of arms. Tell us about it.

[Mike Shuster]

Thank you Mike. That was Mike Shuster from the Great War Project blog.

War in the Sky

One hundred years ago this week in the great war in the sky, a french pilot - Colonel Rene Fonck downs 6 German aircraft in a single day.
Let's meet this interesting man, whose skills ultimately earn him the title of Allied Ace of Aces, but who has a personality that does not match the cool bravado and hero-of-the-sky that many of his compatriots garner.
Fonck is apparently a meticulous man who with the outbreak of World War I in 1914, receives conscription papers - and becomes an engineer building trenches and re-enforcements - but his interest in planes lead him to take flight training.
Like France's leading ace, Captain Georges Guynemer, a dashing hero-of-the-sky, he begins flying the limited production SPAD S.XII. This aircraft features a hand-loaded 37mm cannon that fires through the propeller. This is a really unwieldy weapon, but Fonck manages to down 11 German planes with the cannon.
He then transitions to the more powerful SPAD S.XIII.
Later in 1917 the Germans applaud when beloved French Ace - Guynemer - is shot down by their Lieutenant Kurt Wisseman.
Just a short time later Fonck shoots down Wisseman and names himself "the tool of retribution." Though in the end it turns out the aircraft downed by Fonck was most likely flown by a different Wisseman.
He IS an amazing flier.
By the end of the war he has 75 confirmed kills making him the Allied Ace of Aces.  though -  he submits claims for 142 - only 75 are confirmed.
Despite his stunning success in the air, Fonck is never embraced by the public. He has a withdrawn personality, he seldom socializes with other pilots and instead prefers to focus on improving his aircraft and planning tactics.
When Fonck does socialize, he is thought of as awkward,  arrogant and egotistical. To quote a fellow flier - Fonck  is a "slashing rapier" in the sky, but on the ground he is a "a tiresome braggart"
On the other hand - he DID survive the war! We salute you Colonel Rene Fonck from the Great War in the sky 100 years ago this week.

The Great War Channel

Let’s move on to our friends from the Great War Channel on Youtube. They offer great videos about WW1 - This week their new episodes include:

  1. Reinventing Cavalry in WW1 - Bulgarian General Ivan Kolev
  2. The Battle of Arleux - Robert Nivelle gets fired
  3. Out of the trenches!


World War One NOW

Activities and Events

Taste of trenches: Follow up
The Michigan World War 1 Centennial Commission recently held a wonderful local event - “A Taste of the Trenches”, an event featuring cocktails, food and music from the era.
As a fundraiser, their guests were treated to WW1 exhibits including “Combat uniforms on the Western Front”,  a musical group “The Dugouts” provided WW1 era musical entertainment, and a bar that featured WW1 era cocktails like the B&B (Brandy & Benedictine), Vin Rouge, Side Cars, French 75s and the wonderfully named Monkey Gland. What IS a monkey gland!? Well, if you’d like to know, The Michigan State Commission has generously shared their cocktail recipe book with us, and you’ll find the link in the podcast notes!

National Park Service: An interview with Nathan King
The National Park Service has recently launched a WW1 web site. With us today is Nathan King -  the National Capital Region’s  Digital Communications Specialist for the National Park Service - Welcome.
Your process for collecting the stories for the web site is quite unique - tells us how you did that.

[Nathan King]

That was Nathan King -  the National Capital Region’s  Digital Communications Specialist for the National Park Service

National Museum of the Marine Corps
The National Museum of the Marine Corps, is located in Quantico, Virginia. They have started to hold biweekly WW1 Wednesdays -- there’s one today the May 10th and the next one will be May 24th.
WW1 Wednesdays include activities for children as well as informational displays.
Then on  JUNE 10th: they are holding a WW1 themed Family day- and event that will commemorate the battle of belleau wood - a story we will be talking about more in the coming weeks.
There are links in the podcast notes.

Updates From The States

Baseball with the International League
Last week we announced the first of many collaborations with the commission and professional sports. We have been working with the president of the International League, so this May and into June,  various league teams are going to hold - WW1 night - honoring the doughboys.
If you are a baseball fan, we just launched a new web page that gives you the schedule at ww1cc.org/baseball - all lower case

Hawaii: Baseball’s greatest sacrifice
Speaking of baseball - from Hawaii’s WW1 web site at ww1cc.org/hawaii - we have a new post in the articles section about a Hawaiian WW1 soldier who was a renowned local baseball player.
Apau “Sam” Kau, was a Chinese American pitcher. He deployed to France in July 1918 at 28 years old and served with the 315th infantry. Sam lost his life on November 5th, just six days shy of armistice. Learn more about this man as an athlete and a soldier at ww1cc.org/hawaii

Arkansas WW1 Centennial Commission Minutes
From the Arkansas the State WW1 Commission comes an interesting program -  and idea that other state commissions may want to explore - they have created a weekly 1 minute radio series in collaboration with local  public radio station  KUAR 89.1 FM; these segments highlight stories of Arkansan life during the war and you can listen to them online at their website the link in the podcast notes.

Delaware: A behind the scenes tour of the public archives
In Delaware - On Saturday, May 6, visitors were treated to a “behind the scenes” tour of the Delaware Public Archives. This tour of the building was done in conjunction with a local holiday, which is celebrated in Delaware’s capital every year, known as ‘Old Dover Days’.
As a special feature, this tour showcased a display of 36 World War I propaganda posters from 1917-1918 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of America’s entry into the war. The posters encouraged participation from the American public with rationing food and raw materials, as well as buying government bonds to help fund the war effort.

International Report

Albert Ball’s final journal entry
On to our international report
The title reads Albert Ball’s final journal entry
From the UK - Last week we mentioned the death of Albert Ball, famous British flying ace, during our War in the Sky segment.
Ball’s surviving relatives just released his last journal entry to the public for the first time over the weekend, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of his death.
Ball’s great-niece, who takes care of his journals now, wants the public to know that Ball, was not the loner everyone supposes he was and that his optimism, enthusiasm and love of life shines through in the entries of his journal.
Read more about his journal through the link in the podcast notes, It’s a great reminder that even though we know a lot about the events of the conflict, there is always more to discover and learn about the people who sacrificed in the war.

Cambrai tank veteran “Deborah” prepares for move
From France  a tank was discovered after lying buried for decades,
It’s named Deborah the Mark IV female tank and is about to move further than she has in a hundred years. She’s been sitting in a barn in Flesquieres for the last few years and now, with the help of two heavy duty cranes and a special transporter, she’ll be moved to her forever home at the new World War museum dedicated to the Battle of Cambrai -
Read more about her upcoming move as well as about how she was discovered by a local french man - by Following  the link in  the podcast notes.

Spotlight in the Media

With us today is singer-songwriter, Gordon Thomas Ward who wrote and produced a single - The boys of 17. Welcome Gordon.
Tell us about the project and the song.
[Gordon Ward]
That was musician author and radio host Gordon Thomas Ward.

Articles and Posts

Promotion Toolkit
We have a new resource section on the site called the Promotion Toolkit
The toolkit offers resources for promotion of commemoration events, reportage, activities, and fundraising.
There is general information, the War that Changed The World logo, stock video footage, a great high-resolution library of ww1 public domain photos, educational videos about the war and if you want to do a little peer-to-peer fundraising for us and our programs, we have donation appeal videos that you can post on your facebook, website or other social media asking for help in raising the money to build a national WW1 memorial in Washington DC to honor our doughboy veterans.

Stories of Service
Speaking of doughboys  - you know that there are no longer any living ww1 veterans - but you can keep your family ww1 veteran’s memory alive at our Family ties - stories Stories of Service site! Where you can submit your ancestor’s story along with pictures at ww1cc.org/stories
From the Stories of  Service archive - this week we feature Thad Manning Mangum.
His story was submitted by his grandson, Michael.
Thad served in Company K  in the 323rd Infantry Regiment -  81st Army Division - the fighting Wildcats.
He was mustered into the Army in front of the Courthouse in Greenville, NC on May 25, 1918 and by 3 am the next morning was on a train and on his way to South Carolina for basic.
By August 16th, 1918 her arrived in France where he served in the Vosge Mountain area until armistice.
Meet Thad and learn more about his life and service at our Stories of Service page. You can also submit photos and stories of the WW1 veterans in your family and they will be preserved in perpetuity in the national archive at ww1cc.org/stories

Wwrite Blog
How I turned a family archive into an epic saga of the Great War
In our WWrite blog - which explores WWI’s Influence on Contemporary Writing and Scholarship, This week's post is titled “How I turned a family archive into an epic saga of the Great War”
It features journalist, writer, and teacher, Richard Bachus.
For the post, Bachus discusses the complex process of writing his novel, “Into No Man's Land” , which was inspired by a family archival collection of letters and other artifacts dating from his grandfather's experience in WWI as a Trench Commander in France to the present.
If you are interested in WWI’s Influence on Contemporary Writing and Scholarship - sign up to follow the Wwrite blog at ww1cc.org/W-W-R-I-T-E
Richard Bachus also curates his own blog on the commission web site called trench commander providing details and insights that go well beyond his book. You can follow that at ww1cc.org/trench-commander all lower case.
link: http://www.worldwar1centennial.org/index.php/articles-posts/2264-rich-bachus-on-the-making-of-a-new-world-war-i-novel-part-1.html

The Buzz - WW1 in Social Media Posts

Moving on to the WW1 and social media with The Buzz and also with Katherine Akey - Katherine - what is happening with the WW1 commemoration and social media this week?

The French let the Germans know the US has entered the war

Diary of a War Nurse: PBS

The Radium Girls


That’s WW1 Centennial News for this week. Thank you for listening!

We want to thank our guests
Mike Shuster from the Great War Project blog
Nathan King, Digital Communications Specialist for the National Park Service, National Capital Region
Gordon Thomas Ward, Musician, Author, Radio Host, & Presenter
Katherine Akey the Commission’s social media director and also the line producer for the show.
And I am Theo Mayer - your host this week.

The US World War One Centennial Commission was created by Congress to honor, commemorate and educate about WW1.
Our programs are to--
inspire a national conversation and awareness about WW1;
we are bringing the lessons of the 100 years ago into today's classrooms;
We are helping to restore WW1 memorials in communities of all sizes across our country;
and we are building a National WW1 Memorial in Washington DC.
We rely entirely on your donations. No government appropriations or taxes are being used, so please give what you can by going to ww1cc.org/donate - all lower case
Or if you are on your smart phone text  the word: WW1Now to 41444. that's the letters ww the number 1 and the letters now to 41444
WW1 Centennial News is brought to you as a part of that effort. We want to thank commission’s founding sponsor the Pritzker Military Museum and Library for their support.
The podcast can be found on our website at ww1cc.org/cn on  iTunes and google play ww1 Centennial News.
Our twitter and instagram handles are both @ww1cc and we are on facebook @ww1centennial.
Thanks for joining us. And don’t forget to talk to someone about the centennial of WW1 this week.
So long.


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