WWI DISPATCH May 28, 2019

Another item from the World War One Centennial Commission.


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May 28, 2019

Fox & Friends

World War I remembrance is focus at Fleet Week New York 2019 events

World War I was a persistent theme throughout Fleet Week New York 2019, which wound up yesterday. The scale model maquette of the sculpture for the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC took center stage on Fox and Friends as the big event kicked off last week, and was also featured at the Navy’s opening reception. Click here to watch the Fox and Friends video.Click on the links below for image galleries of these and other Fleet Week events where America’s WWI veterans were remembered.

John J. Harvey

With the help of the historic fireboat John J. Harvey, painted in World War I “dazzle” camouflage pattern, the U.S. WWI Centennial Commission welcomed the U.S.S. New York as she led the parade of ships into New York Harbor to kick off Fleet Week New York. Click here to see striking photos from New York Harbor.

de Blasio at reception

The United States World War I Centennial Commission joined Admiral Christopher W. Grady, Commander of U.S. Fleet Forces Command, and other Sea Service leaders, and city officials, for a special reception to mark the start of Fleet Week New York. Among the attendees was New York Mayor Bill De Blasio, who had a chance to see the Memorial maquette. Click here to see photos from the reception, which included a performance by cast members of the “Hello Girls” Off-Broadway musical.

Sawyer the Sea Dog

The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog in New York was the site of two World War I events: the dedication of the Sergent Stubby sculpture, with remarks by Commission Dr. Libby O’Connell, and a visit from Sawyer the Sea Dog (left), mascot of the U.S. Navy Museum in Washington, D.C., who appeared in his own unique World War I Navy uniform, along with several WWI Navy Living History Reenactors.

USS San Diego plaque

The U.S World War I Centennial Commission unveiled a new memorial plaque honoring the crew of the U.S. Navy WWI heavy cruiser USS San Diego during Fleet Week. Commission Vice Chair Edwin Fountain helped unveil the plaque, and spoke at the event in Times Square. The plaque will be permanently placed in Ocean Beach, N.Y. later this summer to honors the USS San Diego, sunk by enemy action off the coast of New York’s Fire Island , and the six U.S. Navy sailors who were lost in the tragedy.

The 369th Experience, sponsored by the World War I Centennial Commission, was all over town during Fleet Week, with performances at Rockefeller Center (below) as well as at Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem, and leading the annual Brooklyn Memorial Day Parade. Click here for more images of the 369th Experience at Rockefeller Center.

369th Experience at Rockefeller Center


Special Memorial Day Mass in Baltimore for AEF & Polish-American ‘Blue Army’ WWI vets

Polish Army in France

The Maryland Catholic War Veterans (CWV) and Auxiliary hosted the Maryland “Catholic War Veterans Centennial World War I Memorial Mass” this past Sunday, at Saint Casimir Church, Baltimore, Maryland. The Services honored the veterans of World War l, as well as the veterans of General Joseph Haller’s ‘Blue Army’ Volunteers of WWI. In the ceremony, the American Legion’s General Joseph Haller Post 95 was recognized on its 100 Anniversary.  Click here to read more about these services specifically to honor those forgotten heroes of World War l.


KU rededicates WWI memorial ‘Victory Eagle’ in new location on campus

KU Victory Eagle

For the third — and likely final — time, the University of Kansas on Monday dedicated “The Victory Eagle” statue in honor of the Douglas County residents who lost their lives fighting in World War I. “Monuments like this ‘Victory Eagle,’ commissioned to honor those from Douglas County who answered their country’s call, makes this world history our local history,” said Lorie Vanchena, who is a KU associate professor of German Studies. “Eighteen of the 68 individuals whose names appear on the plaque were KU students and alumni. So this monument makes this world history our university history.” Click here to read more about the many flights on the Victory’ Eagle’s journey to a permanent place of honor at KU.


St. Louis threw a homecoming party for the ages in 1919 for the 138th Infantry

St. Louis Parade 1919

St. Louis’ own 138th Infantry Regiment returned from World War I with a parade through the city on May 9, 1919. Coinciding with  the first meeting on American soil of the veterans of World War I who created the American Legion, the massive celebration included the 138th’s soldiers marched through cheering mobs, via pillars erected by the city to make 12th Street a “hall of honor” for the veterans returning from the Great War. Click here to read more about the big celebration for which the 138th had paid dearly in WWI.


Through her eyes: Exhibit offers glimpse of WWI through Hatfield woman’s diaries

Marian C. Billings

Around a century ago, Marian C. Billings left her family’s tobacco farm on Main Street in Hatfield, MA at the age of 37 to join the Red Cross as a canteen worker during World War I. Of the 103 people from Hatfield who enlisted to serve in “the war to end all wars,” she was the only woman. A new exhibit curated by the Hatfield Historical Society shares stories of Billings’ time nursing and feeding soldiers from 1918-1919 in France, as well as presenting stories pieced together about the town’s WWI soldiers. Click here to read more about this remarkable exhibit.


From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

Living History Crew from the USS Olympia at Fleet Week New York 2019

USS Olympia Living History

In May 17th’s edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 123, host Theo Mayer interviewed Kevin Smith and Laura Adie of the Cruiser Olympia Living History Crew. Kevin and Laura both attended Fleet Week in NYC to share World War I Naval History with visitors. Click here to read on and learn more about the work of the Living History Crew, the story of the Olympia, and more. 

Education: Teacher Suzan Turner and her Award-Winning Students

National History Day logo

In May 3rd’s edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 121, host Theo Mayer interviewed Suzan Turner and a few of her students from Nashau, Iowa. Suzan’s students produced an award-winning documentary for Who They Were, a National History Day program that encourages students to engage with World War I. The students received the Loren Horton Award for Local History, and were honored by the Governor of Iowa for having the outstanding youth project in local history in the State this year. Click here to read the transcript of an absorbing interview with some remarkable young students of World War I.

The Curtiss NC-4 and the First Transatlantic Flight

Glenn Curtiss

In May 10th’s edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 122, host Theo Mayer recounted the story of the first transatlantic flight. American Navy pilots flying a Curtiss NC-4 made several stops on a trip that ultimately took several weeks before landing in Lisbon, Portugal. It was harrowing journey that marked a major achievement for the Navy, the nascent aerospace industry, and the United States as a whole. Click here to read the transcript of this enthralling podcast about aviation history.


WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

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 siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New – Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

map of ottoman empire

Episode #124
Highlights:The Imperial Hubris of Mandates

Host – Theo Mayer

100 Years ago: The Imperial Hubris of Mandates –
Host | @ 01:55

The Fate of The Ottoman Empire –
Mike Shuster | @ 09:45

War Memoirs From WWI: “Edmund Blunden”  –
Dr. Edward Lengel | @ 13:55

Commission News: Fleet Week Update –
Host | @ 19:45

Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence –
Dr. Kate Clark-Lemay | @ 21:10

Erie County WWI Remembrance –
Mary Jane Koenig | @ 28:40

Articles & Posts: Highlights from Dispatch –
Host | @ 34:35


Literature in WWI This Week

Wwrite Blog Logo

How to Remember Your Ancestor’s Names

By Drew Pham

When WWrite asked veteran The Wrath-Bearing Tree editor, Drew Pham to contribute a post, he composed a poem that traces his Vietnamese heritage by looking at WWI and beyond using experimental techniques with language and style.

Pham, who was sent to Afghanistan with the 10th Mountain Division, has published fictional and non-fictional work in Time Magazine, The Daily Beast, Foreign Policy, Columbia Journal, and The Brooklyn Review. Read Pham’s innovative poem “How to Remember Your Ancestor’s Names” at WWrite this week!

Behind Their Lines

behind their lines

For many Americans who fought in the First World War, their journey on a military transport ship was highly memorable: it was the first time they’d ever left the country.

Pittsburgh native Frank L. Armstrong wrote the comic verse “Going Over”; it uses humor to cope with the disconcerting strangeness of crossing an ocean for war service.


Doughboy MIA for week of 5/27

James G. Mason

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday’s MIA this week is PFC James G. Mason. Born 10 December 1897 in Dublin, Georgia, James Griffing Mason was the son of James D. and Cassie G. Mason, the youngest of three children. He was one of the first from Dublin to enlist in the ‘Macon Volunteers’ for Border service on 20 June, 1916 into Company B, 2nd Georgia National Guard. Upon the unit’s return following the US declaration of war, they were sent to the newly formed Camp Gordon to be federalized in August, 1917 as Company B of the 151st Machine Gun Battalion, 42nd ‘Rainbow’ Division. A conscientious and popular soldier, Private Mason was soon promoted to Private First Class. The 42ndwent to France in November, 1917 and was in the thick of it almost from the beginning, eventually seeing 264 days of combat.

It was on 29 July, 1918, that PFC Mason was killed in action near Villers Sur Fere (Sergy) during the drive from Chateau Thierry to the Vesle River. He was 20 years old. While little is known of his case at this time, there is evidence that the temporary cemetery he was buried in contained several bodies buried without markers. PFC Mason may have been one.

                There is a private memorial to him in a family cemetery at Dublin, Georgia, and a military provided marker at Detrick Cemetery at Shenandoah County, Virginia.

Want to help shed some light on PFC Mason’s case? Consider making a donation 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. It takes only a moment and your tax deductible contribution can be as large as you want or as small as $10.00 on our ‘Ten for Them’ program. Your contribution helps us make a full accounting of all 4,423 US MIA’s from WW1 and keeps these lost men from being forgotten.  Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.

Remember: A man is only missing if he is forgotten.


Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Commemorative Hat

Commemorative Doughboy Hat

Inspired by the iconic image of a U.S. Doughboy, you can wear your American pride with this Made in the USA hat. The poignant lone silhouette of a soldier in trench warfare serves as a reminder of those who sacrificed so much one century ago. The Navy hat with white Doughboy embroidery is a 100% cotton, structured with contrasting pancake visor, sweatband and taping, and pre-curved bill. The velcro closure features U.S. flag emblem. A Certificate of Authenticity as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial is included. Order your Doughboy Commemorative hat here.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.  Proceeds from the Official WWI Centennial Merchandise help to fund the building of the national World War One Memorial in Washington, D.C.



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Frank J. Dunleavy

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

Frank J. Dunleavy

Submitted by: Ellen Kazimer {Granddaughter}

Frank J. Dunleavy was born around 1889. Frank Dunleavy served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1918 and the service was completed in 1919.

Story of Service

My grandfather, Frank J. Dunleavy, was drafted in April of 1918. He was 29, and by the time he arrived at the front, the war was over. French soldiers informed him, but he didn’t believe it until he reported to the front.

Frank Dunleavy worked in the Central Records Office in Bourges, France compiling the service records of every soldier in the American Expeditionary Forces. For six months there were 6000 soldiers and five to six hundred women from Great Britain’s auxiliary army corps working in the records office.

My grandfather sent an amusing letter to his family detailing a week of leave touring the Rivera on seven dollars. He slept on the baggage rack of the train, went to a dance where he said the French danced fairly good, toured museums, and watched Charlie Chaplin at the movies.

Read Frank J. Dunleavy’s entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family’s Story of Service here.


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