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Fort DouaumontRidgefield High School seniors Aaron Cohen and Mairead Lacey were among a group of 15 students who participated in the "Digging Into History: WWI Trench Restoration” program in Seicheprey, France this summer. The program brought participants to the site of the first German offensive against American troops to restore a section of trench once occupied by Connecticut’s 102nd Infantry Regiment. The group tours Fort Douaumont in the picture above.

Ridgefield, CT students dig into World War I history 

via the MySA (San Antonio, TX) web site

Ridgefield students Aaron Cohen and Mairead Lacey have returned from the Connecticut State Library’s “Digging Into History: WWI Trench Restoration” program in Seicheprey, France.

The three-week innovative experiential learning program brought fifteen Connecticut high school students to the site of the first German offensive against American troops to restore a section of trench once occupied by Connecticut’s 102d Infantry Regiment.

“This program, the only one of its kind in the United States, was a spectacular success and resulted in a life changing experience for students and chaperones alike,” said Christine Pittsley, project director of the state library’s “Remembering World War One: Sharing History and Preserving Memories” program.

The trench restoration work, led by local military historians Phillipe Dourthe and Denis Meyer, resulted in more than 100 meters of trench restored; two wattle walls built and a shelter rebuilt. A number of artifacts were found, including an American boot, a French spoon with a bullet hole and even a Napoleon III coin dating to the 1850s.

Students cataloged the finds and documented their work through photos and video that will become part of the Connecticut State Library’s permanent archives.

Read the entire article on the MySA web site here:

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