Monthly Archives: August 2020

Tomorrow: The Canada-US asylum (dis)agreement; how one grad chose to make an impact

A reminder from one of our fellow Canadian organizations in the Bay Area.

Canadian Studies Announcements
In this issue:
  • TOMORROW: Refugee policy and the Canadian courts
  • Catch up with former Hildebrand Fellow Daniel Suarez
  • Upcoming event: Return: Blackness and Belonging in North America
  • Fellowship: International Affairs Fellowship in Canada
Event Tomorrow
No Safe Country for Refugees? The Canada-US Safe Third Country Agreement Before the Canadian Courts
Panel | September 1 | 12:30 PM | Online – RSVP here
Until recently, certain asylum claimants who entered Canada were routinely returned to the United States under the the Safe Third Country Agreement. However, in July Canada’s Federal Court ordered the agreement suspended, asserting that the US is “not safe” for refugees due to the risk of imprisonment and other basic rights violations. Audrey Macklin, an expert in human rights law at the University of Toronto, joins Berkeley Law professor Leti Volpp to unpack the ruling and what it means for migrants and US-Canada relations. The conversation will be moderated by immigration scholar and Canadian Studies director Irene Bloemraad.
Please RSVP at to receive a webcast link. You must be signed in to a Zoom account to join. UC Berkeley affiliates can use their CalNet ID’s to sign in to Zoom; other participants can create a free, consumer Zoom account or dial in via phone.
“It’s Very Meaningful to Impart What I Know”
Catching Up With 2012 Hildebrand Fellow Daniel Suarez
Early in his academic career, Daniel Suarez knew that he wanted to pursue research that blended science and social science. He earned undergraduate degrees in environmental science and anthropology at the University of British Columbia; a master’s in geography at University of Toronto; and his PhD in environmental science, policy, and management at UC Berkeley. Dr. Suarez wrote his dissertation on the rise of ecosystem services (a framework emphasizing nature’s benefits to humanity), and the people shaping that movement. As part of his research, he received Hildebrand funding to conduct a longitudinal study on the rise and fall of ecosystems services in British Columbia, where he grew up.
Dr. Suarez is now an assistant professor at Middlebury College, a liberal arts college in Vermont. He has become deeply invested in developing his pedagogy and understanding how students from Generation Z engage with environmental education. Canadian Studies asked current Hildebrand Fellow Kimberly Huynh to catch up with Dr. Suarez to learn more about his work and how his experiences shaped his career. Highlights from the interview are below; read the full piece here.
What was your research about?
It was an ethnographic research project which explored the network of practitioners at the forefront of mainstreaming “ecosystem services,” which at that time was really blowing up. The idea marked a remarkable shift in environmentalism, from protecting nature “from” people to protecting nature “for” people. The framing was more about dollars and cents, a kind of “business case” for conservation. British Columbia was a case study for me to examine how these ideas were playing out on the ground.
How did the Hildebrand Fellowship support your research goals?
I got a Hildebrand Fellowship in 2012, near the start of my work in British Columbia. The work that I proposed was pretty ambitious (and expensive). So Canadian Studies being willing to step up for me to actually get started was really key. It was a helpful seed grant that allowed me to produce preliminary findings that then made further rounds of grant proposals much easier to pursue. Other organizations were much more willing to take a chance on me because I was able to demonstrate momentum. I’m very grateful for that.
How did your research develop over the course of your project?
When I started my work, the BC provincial government was really, really keen on ecosystem services. The government talked about it as a sort of game-changing idea. Five years later, and again with the support of the Canadian Studies program, I returned to British Columbia. To my surprise, ecosystem services had fallen out of the picture entirely. Pipeline politics had sort of superseded other aspects of environmental politics in the province, and the debate was much more polarized and adversarial.
Stephen Harper staked a lot of his political capital on turning Canada into what he described as a “natural resource superpower”, and ecosystem services, which at its core meant meeting one another halfway, just wasn’t relevant under these conditions. Environmental groups had their backs to the wall, and no longer courted power nor tried to work with power. Instead, they chose to confront and fight. And the interesting part is that they won. All of these pipelines that the government was advancing just broke on the rocks of fierce political resistance from First Nations, local communities and others, using strategies that really had little to do with ecosystem services.
What was your takeaway from your research experience?
As I was beginning to wrap up my research, which coincided with the seismic 2016 election, I began to engage a lot more deeply with the implications of climate and global change science. I began to question how to be impactful in this incredibly dire and important moment. At Middlebury, I’ve come to appreciate how important teaching is. For many academics, teaching is an afterthought, just this thing that gets in the way of research. It’s been surprising to me how much I have switched from seeing teaching as an obligation to something I really look forward to doing. It’s very meaningful to get to impart what I know, and to help students do what I can – potentially much more consequential than writing esoteric journal articles.
Return: On Blackness and Belonging in North America
Lecture | September 15 | 12:30 p.m. | Online – RSVP here
McGill University professor Debra Thompson, an expert on race and ethnic politics, will explore the complex experience of Black people in North America, juxtaposing her deep, ancestral links to the United States with a parallel but at times competing national affinity with the land to which many enslaved Black Americans once fled: Canada. Thompson uses personal narrative to explore the boundaries of racial belonging; to identify key facets of Canadian ideas about race and racism, including the intersection of racial formations and settler colonialism; to analyze the transnational nuances and contours of the African diaspora in North America; and ultimately, to think through what it means to be in a place, but not be of that place.
Applications Open: International Affairs Fellowship in Canada
Launched in 2016, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR)’s International Affairs Fellowship (IAF) in Canada, sponsored by Power Corporation of Canada, seeks to strengthen mutual understanding and cooperation between rising generations of leaders and thinkers in the United States and Canada. The program provides for one to two mid-career professionals per year to spend six to twelve months hosted by a Canadian institution to deepen their knowledge of Canada. Fellows are drawn from academia, business, government, media, NGOs, and think tanks. CFR will work with its network of contacts to assist the fellows in finding suitable host organizations in Canada. The duration of the fellowship is between six and twelve months. The program awards a stipend of $95,000 for a period of twelve months as well as a modest travel allowance. Fellows are considered independent contractors rather than employees of CFR and are not eligible for employment benefits, including health insurance.
Applications are due by October 31st, 2020: apply here.
Canadian Studies Program
213 Moses Hall #2308
Canadian Studies Program | Univ. of California, Berkeley, 213 Moses Hall #2308, Berkeley, CA 94720

WWI Dispatch August 2020

A newsletter from the World War One Centennial Commission.

View this in your browser

Header Image 09172019

August 2020

Doughboys Ship to UK in 2020 webinar

“Doughboys Leave New Jersey for UK – in 2020!” Webinar Friday, September 11

In 1917 and 1918, America sent many Doughboys “Over There” from our shores in New Jersey, headed for the UK and the nation’s entry into World War I. In September 2020, the first 11 figures of the 48-figure bronze sculpture “A Soldier’s Journey” being created for the National World War I Memorial are getting ready to ship out for the foundry in the UK, where, like the raw Doughboys of 100 years ago were turned into an incredible fighting force, the clay sculpted figures will be cast into enduring metal.

Before this first contingent ships out, you have a last and unique opportunity to view the entire 48-figure ensemble, assembled in the Englewood, NJ studio where they are being created by sculptor Sabin Howard, during our “The Doughboys Leave New Jersey for the UK – in 2020!” webinar on Friday, September 11, 1:00 p.m. EDT.

This webinar is the last chance to see all 48 figures assembled at full scale in one place until the completed bronze sculpture is installed at the national WWI Memorial in Washington, DC several years from now.

Mitch Yockelson

We will open the webinar with an update on the Memorial construction, and reveal when the fences are coming down for public access to the National WWI Memorial. Next, historian and author Dr. Mitchell Yockelson (left) will give us some insight into what was happening in New Jersey 100 years ago as the newly minted soldiers and raw recruits prepared to embark for the war zone and combat.

Sabin Howard mug

Then Master Sculptor Sabin Howard (right)  will walk us through the 48 clay figures, in different stages of completion, which are being created for eventual casting into bronze.  You’ll get a close look at the intricate details of the sculpting from the artist himself, and a deep understanding of the creative process.

And apropos our theme, we are closing with the short documentary “How WWI Changed America: Going To War”.

Click here to register for this unique webinar.  Advance registration is required, so sign up now!

Updates to WWI Memorial “Virtual Explorer” App published in August

App updated Aug 2020

A new release was published in late August that was the result of extensive user testing done the previous month. Release 1.2 iOS &1.4 Android feature a new “Getting Started” explainer video at the top of the app. Post-update testing resulted in all testers successfully using the app within a couple of minutes of starting it – a dramatic improvement.

Many other usability features have been updated to make the WWI Memorial Virtual Explorer not just easier to get going on, but also easier to use and enjoy. Testing and refining continues.  Click here or the image at left to download the latest version.

Countown: 100 Days to Bells of Peace 2020 logo

Update on “Bells of Peace” National bell tolling in remembrance of those who served and sacrificed in World War I

The Countdown to Bells of Peace is continuing on our social media platforms FacebookTwitter and Instagram, headed for November 11, 2020, when everyone is invited to toll the “Bells of Peace” in honor of all those who served and sacrificed in World War I.

Everyone who wants to participate but does not have a bell to toll, the Doughboy Foundation has committed to updating the Bells of Peace App for 2020. For those who are not familiar with it, the App allows users to select from 7 different bell sounds that will toll at 11am local time on November 11th. Since that is Veterans Day, the 11th hour, of the 11th day of the 11th month is the time to remember our Doughboys. With the Bells of Peace App open on their phones, organizations, individuals and groups can toll the bells together, 21 times, 5 seconds apart.

Unlike years past, the 2020 update of the Bells of Peace App will focus on allowing users as groups or individuals to test their tolling in advance to be sure the moment comes off without a hitch. Additionally, we are creating a social media aggregation inside the app so that anyone participating can share theirs as a group (even if all participants are remote) by posting to the #BellsOfPeace hashtag.

You can download the limited 2019 version NOW to play with the bell sounds because the same app will update to the 2020 version in October. Got to your phone’s App store and search for Bells of Peace.

Change coming for segregated Loudoun County, VA World War I memorial

Loudoun County plaque

The bronze plaque on the Loudoun County World War I Memorial has stood in the heart of Leesburg for nearly 100 years. Located on the county courthouse grounds, the plaque lists the names of the 30 service members from Loudoun who died during war. Segregated by two engraved lines, on top are the names of 27 white service members; below are three Black men who equally gave their lives for America.

The dividing line may soon be gone.

Click here to read more about efforts to change the plaque in time for the 100th anniversary of the memorial’s installation.

World War I chemical munitions cleanup finally ‘complete’ in Washington, DC

Cleanup in DC complete

The decades-long effort to clean up a World War I chemical munitions hazardous site in Washington, DC (reported on here previously) located just southwest of the American University campus, is now complete, according to the project’s manager. Click here to read more about what it took to finally render “the mother of all toxic dumps” safe again.

Flying tribute planned for Wichita, KS World War I Medal of Honor aviator

Bleckley mug

The Bleckley Airport Memorial Foundation is on a mission to ensure a piece of history flies the skies of Wichita all to honor 2nd Lt. Erwin Bleckley, one of eight to be awarded the Medal of Honor during the “Lost Battalion” episode, and one of the only four members of the U.S. Army’s Air Service to be awarded Medals of Honor in WWI. Click here to read more about the effort to put the aircraft that Bleckley flew to back into air worthy status.

Ludovicus Maria Matheus Van Iersel: An Immigrant Hero of World War I

Ludovicus Maria Matheus Van Iersel

During the First World War, thousands of foreign-born citizens and immigrants joined the United States military as the nation tried to meet the massive manpower requirements of the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF). Of these immigrant combatants, 13 received the Medal of Honor for their wartime valor. One of these men, Ludovicus Matheus Van Iersel, volunteered to serve again in the Second World War — in the U.S. Marine Corps!.  Click here to read the fascinating story of this American fighting man from the Netherlands, and his service in two wars.

100 Years Ago: Dedication of the World War I Memorial in Scranton, PA

Scranton snip

The Lackawanna Historical Society’s History Bytes publication, Janice M. Gavern, Deputy Commander, Woman Veterans Issues, for the 15th District American Legion, Department of Pennsylvania, tells the story of the creation of the World War I Memorial in the Scranton, PA’s Nay Aug Park. Click here to read the entire story of how citizens determined that the sacrifice of the 242 men and six women from Scranton who gave their lives in World War I would be remembered.

World War I changed American attitudes about women’s suffrage

Suffrage sign

While American women had been fighting for the right to vote for decades prior to the ratification of the 19th Amendment on August 18, 1920, it was not until World War I that their cause for political independence regained momentum, argues legal scholar Pamela S. Karlan. Interviewed on the Futurity web site, Karlan discusses what the 19th Amendment accomplished and the challenges that persist today. Click here to read the entire interview.

World War I Austerity Couldn’t Stop the Fashion Show – “a patriotic duty”

Lucile - or Lady Duff Gordone

Modern shoppers can frame almost any purchase in moral terms. Think of all those people getting takeout to support local restaurants during the pandemic. As theater historian Marlis Schweitzer explains, one foremother of this attitude was British fashion designer Lucile, or Lady Duff Gordon. She promoted luxury consumption as a patriotic duty in the face of government-backed austerity campaigns during the First World War in New York. Click here to learn more,including Lucile’s insistence that “it was the duty of every wife, sweetheart and mother to spend as much on dress as they could possibly afford in order to make the best of themselves for the sake of the men in the trenches.”

A pandemic, never-maskers, and open-air meetings: Welcome to 1918

Mask or jail

As America and the world continue the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, the lessons from World War I and the Spanish Flu Pandemic continue to resonate. Writing in the Edmonds Beacon newspaper in Washington state, Betty Lou Gaen recalls how the disease had killed over 5,000 of the state’s residents by 1918. Adrija Roychowdhury writes in The Indian Express newspaper of “Lessons from the 1918 Spanish flu: When mask laws triggered protests in the United States.” On the the web site, Becky Little explores “‘Mask Slackers’ and ‘Deadly’ Spit: The 1918 Flu Campaigns to Shame People Into Following New Rules.” TEN magazine, published by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, carries an article about how “During the deadly flu pandemic, Fed drove vital funding for World War I” in 1918. But if you have already heard enough comparisons between the COVID-19 and Spanish Flu pandemics, try this: “Another WWI throwback: Trench Fever Spread by Lice Found in Denver.”

Stay healthy out there!

Doughboy MIA for August 2020

DOughboy MIA Generic image

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Our Doughboy MIA this month is Private Homer A. Armstrong, of Philomath, Oregon.

Homer Alexander Armstrong was born January 18th, 1892 in the town of Paddock, in Gage County Nebraska to Irene and John E. Armstrong. Homer was one of three sons; himself, and younger brothers Clarence and John Jr. There had also been two girls born – one before Homer (Minnie, in 1888) and one just before Clarence (Louisa, in 1893) but both died in infancy.  John Senior himself died in 1899 shortly before John Junior was born, and in 1904 Clarence died at age 9. In about 1910 Homer went to live with his mother’s sister and her husband, Mr. and Mrs. Alex J. Brown. Then, when Irene died in 1915, John Jr. joined them and they all moved to Philomath, Oregon.

Shortly before the declaration of war, Homer made the decision to enlist in the Oregon National Guard and was assigned to Company K of the 3rd Oregon Infantry, based in Corvallis. When the 3rd Oregon Infantry Regiment was federalized, they became the Headquarters Company of the 162nd Infantry Regiment/41st Division. After receiving training, Homer left with the 41st for France on December 12th, 1917.

In France the 41st Division was redesignated the 1st Depot Division and immediately began feeding its infantry units piecemeal into combat units to fill battle casualties. Homer was sent to the 32nd Division as a replacement sometime after May 1918, being assigned to Company D of the 127th Infantry. In late July the 32nd moved into the Chateau Thierry sector to relieve the 3rd Division, which had seen heavy combat over the previous three months.

On the night of July 29th, the 127th Infantry moved into the front lines under a terrible artillery barrage. At 1430 hours on July 30th, 1918 the 127th went over the top and followed a rolling barrage into the Bois des Grimpettes. They pushed through the woods until they were stopped by machine gun fire from the right flank. On this flank, from positions in the Bois de Cierges, the Germans continued to oppose every effort to advance, but the 127th gained the edge of those woods and established themselves there. During the night the Germans launched a counter attack from the Bois de Meuniere and a bayonet melee raged for hours in the dark, tangled woods, until the attacking force was finally routed.

On the morning of July 31st, the regiment was again in action, pushing their attack through the Bois de Meuniere and into the village of Cierges and beyond. North of the village they were held up by a withering hail of machine gun fire from Bellevue Farm, which the Germans had organized into a very strong center of resistance and which the U.S. artillery had failed to smother.

It was there, north of Cierges during heavy fighting that afternoon that Homer Armstrong was killed by machine gun fire. His comrades buried him in a hasty battlefield grave that day, the position of which was reported to Graves Registration Service. Nevertheless, when GRS officials went looking for the grave after the war, it could not be located. Homer remains missing to this day, and is memorialized on the Walls of the Missing at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery at Belleau, France.


At the beginning of 2020, Doughboy MIA was contacted by Mr. Eric Niemann, the Mayor of Philomath, Oregon. The city council wished to honor Homer among the veterans from their town, but they were finding little information and asked if we could help. Slowed by Covid but undeterred, the Doughboy MIA team went to work and chronicled Homer’s story in a full report and sent it to Mayor Niemann. The result was that a city resolution was passed proclaiming July 31st ‘Homer Armstrong Day’ in Philomath. Thus it was that, 102 years after his death, Homer was again remembered, and will be every year from now on; to be forgotten no more.

And a man is only missing if he is forgotten.

This is a beautiful example of your donations at work. Because of your donations the research materials needed to investigate and chronicle Homer’s story were available to us. Thank you! You made a difference with us. And if you haven’t donated and would like to in order to be part of our work, hop on over to our website at and make your tax-deducible donation today.

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise


White Ceramic
WWI Centennial

Featuring the iconic Doughboy silhouette flanked by barbed wire so prevalent during WWI, you can enjoy your favorite beverage in this 15-ounce ceramic mug and honor the sacrifices made by American soldiers, sailors, and Marines in World War I.

Proceeds from the sale of this item will help build the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC.

A Certificate of Authenticity as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial is included.

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

Memorial Camera

You can keep track of progress at the new National World War I Memorial through construction site time lapse video, or a live video feed from the site. Click here to take a look, and also find out how you can help finish this national tribute to the 4.7 million Americans who served, and the 116,516 who did not come home from World War I.

QR Code for Virtual Explorer App download

Click or scan the QR Code above to download the Virtual Explorer App for the National World War I Memorial, and explore what the Memorial will look like when work is completed.

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Education Thumb Drive image

Free Self-Contained WWI History Web Site on YOUR computer

Sources, lessons, activities, videos, podcasts, images

We have packaged all the content we created for “How WWI Changed America” into a format that is essentially a web site on a drive. Download the content onto any drive (USB, external, or as a folder on your computer), and all the content is accessible in a web site type format even without an internet connection. Click here to learn more, and download this amazing educational resource for home or classroom use.

Genealogy book FREE DOWNLOAD

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Lewis Lawrence Lacey

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of

Lewis Lawrence Lacey

Submitted by: Laura Lacey Caldwell {Daughter}

Lewis Lawrence Lacey born around 1895. Lewis Lacey served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1919.

Story of Service

Military Biography

Corporal Lewis Lacey served in France during the Great War as a proud member of the 42nd Division of the American Expeditionary Forces.

The eldest son of Dr. Lewis and Forney (Beaumont) Lacey, he was born in San Antonio, Texas, on March 27, 1895, and raised in Austin, Texas, where his father established his medical practice on Congress Avenue, a stone’s throw from the Texas state capitol building.

Lewis Lacey, like his three younger brothers, was educated in the Austin public schools and later attended the University of Texas in that city. During his youth, when the stifling heat of summer blanketed Austin, Lewis and his brothers would spend their school vacation camping, swimming, fishing and hunting at nearby Lake Austin. Those early camping experiences undoubtedly helped prepare him for the primitive living conditions in the hastily constructed military training camps both in the United States and in France, where sometimes his only shelter was the pup tent he carried in his backpack.

On May 25, 1917, just one week after Congress passed the Selective Service Act, but before the first draft, Lewis, aged twenty-two years, enlisted in the Texas National Guard in Austin. He listed his occupation as “actor”, a career he had begun in high school and continued on stage in local Austin theaters. On July 5, 1917, he was conscripted to Camp Mabry, near Austin. From there he was transferred from to Camp Bowie, outside Ft. Worth, Texas, and assigned to Truck Company #2, 117th Supply Train, 42nd Division. While there he began his “Dearest Mother” correspondence, which he continued faithfully throughout the war.

Read Lewis Lawrence Lacey’s entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family’s Story of Service here.

Honor the Stories of Service of ALL Who Served.

Do Your Bit to Help Build the new National World War I Memorial.

Memorial Fundraising Thermometer 08282020

RBLI’s first ever Tommy Tea just happened!

An item from the organization formerly known as There But Not There.


Will you be joining with Alan, our 96 year old resident dancer, and throwing some shapes at your own Tommy Tea?
Residents at Queen Elizabeth Court held the first ever Tommy Tea this week, to raise money (and eat a lot cake!) for RBLI. There was magic on and off the dance floor as George shared some card tricks and little tipple of Red Velvet Bailey’s.
We would love to hear about your Tommy Tea party plan!

One amazing supporter will be holding their Tommy Tea in honour of their great grandfather, a stretcher bearer in WW1 and grandfather, who was interned in Burma. They’ve got a busy day planned including a bake off, raffle and name the teddy bear competition!

Now don’t worry if you’re short on ideas. We’ve introduced some party pieces to our downloadable collection that are sure to liven up your event! How about joining the great tea debate? Our office has voted and the result is… 6 or 7!

Our Tommies are standing proud in homes and gardens up and down the country. Why not have a Tommy personally attend your tea?
Email to share yours!
 Alexander used to love collecting outside Tesco, but covid put a stop to that. 😞 So instead he’s braving the coals and taking part in our fire walk challenge! Those coals are over 1200 degree Farenheit. What a legend!

Help Alexander reach his fundraising goal by sponsoring him here.

Tommy Tea is supported by Britain Loves Baking
Copyright © 2020 RBLI
All rights reserved.

We have something special for you!

A new item from the organization formerly known as There But Not There.

We have been working with the Royal Engineers Association to bring you something special…
… say hello to SAPPER TOMMY!
In celebration of our major new partnership with The Royal Engineers Association, we have launched this specially engraved Sapper Tommy.

The commemorative Sapper Tommy is the perfect way to celebrate over 300 years of successful military engineering around the world.

Made by veterans working in RBLI’s social enterprise, Britain’s Bravest Manufacturing Company, based in Aylesford. 

This new partnership with The Royal Engineers Association will see the development of assisted-living accommodation Sapper House. The accommodation will provide support to those veterans who have life-changing physical injuries as a result of service and who need additional help to remain independent.
Copyright © 2020 RBLI
All rights reserved.