Tag Archives: World War One Centennial Commission

RESOLVED – Cpl. Uber, U.S. Army MIA

An item from the organization formerly known at the World War One Centennial Commission, which may be of interest to members.

Doughboy MIA letter header
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Hi Friend,

One year ago, I shared the story of Corporal James L. Uber: a 29-year-old Pennsylvania boy killed in action on October 8, 1918 while serving in France as part of Company E, 112th Infantry Regiment, 28th Division National Army. His body, interned in a shallow grave where he fell, was never recovered; his family was never given a last resting place to remember him and ease their grief.

But today, I am writing with some good news.

Cpl. James Uber

On Thursday, January 27th from 8:00 to 9:00 PM EST– I’ll be presenting the latest findings in the Cpl. Uber case, a detailed look at a year-long investigation and our journey onto the battlefields of France to recover one of our brave young American boys. This is your chance to learn what we are doing to give more of these missing soldiers, sailors, Marines, and airmen a final resting place – and how you might be able to help.

You can access this Zoom briefing by signing up here.

I firmly believe that a man is only missing if he is forgotten. That’s why I founded Doughboy MIA, the only nonprofit in the world working to find our missing American boys from WWI and bringing them home. And you can help.

Even if you can’t make it, but are interested in learning more, please sign up. We’ll be sending a full recording of the briefing to those who do, along with updates as we head back to France later in the year for more search and recovery operations.

Help remember James and the sacrifice he made for this country. Sign up and get involved.



Robert J. Laplander

Directing Manager – Doughboy M.I.A.


(414) 333-9402

A Man Is Only Missing If He Is Forgotten

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WWI DISPATCH January 2022

A newsletter from the organization formerly known as the World War One Centennial Commission.

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January 2022

Taps in the Snow January 2, 2022 tight

“…nor snow. nor dark of night…”

Daily Taps at the National WWI Memorial sounded despite inclement DC weather

Snow bugler 01032022 tight

The powerful winter storm that dumped some 10 inches of snow in the DC area on Monday, January 3 did not stop the sounding of Taps at the new National World War I Memorial in Washington. This solemn nightly tribute in honor of the Americans who served in WWI and the service of all U.S. veterans and active military personnel, sponsored by The Doughboy Foundation, was sounded as scheduled at 5:00 pm in this public gathering place for reflection on “the war that changed the world.” The daily sounding of Taps at the National World War I Memorial, every day in perpetuity, is a key objective of the Doughboy Foundation’s ongoing work. You can help make this program a permanent, living part of daily life in our nation’s capital by donating to the endowment that will ensure its funding into the future.

Connecticut’s 1st Official State Troubadour Connects to World War I

Connecticut's 1st Official State Troubadour

Tom Callinan, designated as as Connecticut’s 1st Official State Troubadour in legislation passed by the CT General Assembly, anticipated that his services might be called upon for the commemoration of the Centennial of World War I. What he didn’t anticipate was how his own family tie to WWI, his great uncle Jerry Coleman, would become so central a figure in that work. Click here to read more, and learn how a WWI Doughboy accompanies performances of both original and historic music about Americans serving during the Great War.

The Trucks the Doughboys Left Behind: Surplus Disposal in Europe after WWI

Trucks the Doughboys Left Behind

Writer Tim Gosling notes that “Amongst the many millions of postcards sent home to the friends and families of the Doughboys of the American Expeditionary Force is a small but reoccurring theme. It is a picture of an army truck usually with a proud Doughboy either leaning upon it or sitting in the driver’s seat and on the back the words something along the lines of “This is the truck that I am driving”. World War One introduced the driving of mechanical transport to a great number who it might otherwise have passed by. What it also did is establish a bond between military drivers and their machines, something which has happened ever since.” Click here to read more about the very American bond between man and machines, and how most of the beloved trucks that served in WWI were left behind in Europe when the Doughboys came home.

Built Fast and Not Meant to Last: The story of Camp Sherman’s WWI Buildings

Camp Sherman Buildings snip

In 1923, President Warren G. Harding created the Mound City National Monument by setting aside a portion of land from Camp Sherman, Ohio, a World War I training cantonment just outside of Chillicothe. Ohio historian Paul LaRue wondered what became of the structures built to house and train US troops on the grounds of Camp Sherman after that donation. Click here to read more, and learn how the temporary buildings that supported Doughboy training at Camp Sherman later became, in many cases, permanent structures in the local communities.

Frontenac High School in Kansas sees Glimpses from the Great War

Glimpses from the Great War poster

A hundred years later, why should the Great War have any meaning for today’s high school students? “Why we fight wars today probably hasn’t changed a whole lot,” explains Brady Hill, history/ government teacher at Frontenac High School in Kansas. “Diplomacy fails, other means fail, and having that understanding is important,” On a conceptual level this makes sense, but it’s hardly appealing to today’s teens. Hill believes it’s the personal views and hearing first-hand experiences of individual Doughboys that bring America’s role in World War I alive for his students. Click here to read more, and learn how the award-winning documentary Glimpses from the Great War helped the students get a first-hand view from men who served in World War I.

Red poppies will bloom this spring at the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC

Memorial American Legion Auxiliary article

A new article appeared on the American Legion Auxiliary web site last week to highlight the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC. The article noted that the “long-awaited memorial to World War I and the 4.7 million Americans who served in the war is now a reality” as “the last of the 20th century wars to receive its own memorial in our nation’s capital.”  Click here to read the entire article, and learn how the iconic red poppy blossoms will bloom later this year in landscaped areas of the memorial.

Veterans Day launch of new comic book featuring WWI hero Dr. Frank Boston

Dr. Frank Boston comic book launch

The Boston Legacy Foundation returned to the National World War I Memorial in Washington, D.C. on November 11th, Veteran’s Day, to continue to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Frank Boston, a WWI Veteran, alongside all of those who have served their country and to celebrate the release of the Doc Boston Adventures comic book. Click here to read more, and learn how the “Doc Boston Adventures”, based upon a true story Boston and his team saving lives, updated to reflect America today and introduce a unique and diverse group of young first responders.

He fought for self-determination in a time of assimilation. He left these objects.

John B. McGillis

Photographer Nīa MacKnight never met her great grandfather John B. McGillis, but she did have a window into his storied life as an Anishinaabe man in early 20th-century America: a steam trunk where he stowed away undated photographs and stray objects such as an address book, a pair of horn-rimmed glasses, and a single eagle feather. McGillis also served in World War I, and later secured a position at the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs where he worked towards improving employment opportunities for Indigenous people. Click here to read more, and see how MacKnight is using her skills as a documentary photographer and interviews with relatives and family friends, to piece together McGillis’ history, and reflecting on questions of identity and self-determination that persist to this day.

Woodrow Wilson seizes U.S. railroads

Woodrow Wilson railroads snip

The American railroad system faltered under the heavy demands of a wartime economy in 1917, resulting in materials being unable to be loaded and shipped on trains. On December 26, 1917, President Wilson issued a declaration that he had nationalized the railroad system, and he ordered Secretary of War Newton Baker to take possession of the railroads on December 28, 1917. The National Constitution Center looks back at “one of the broadest acts of presidential power” which occurred during World War I. Click here to learn how Congressional action was repeatedly needed to return the railroads to private ownership at war’s end.

The bravery of Jesse Clipper, first Black from Buffalo to sacrifice his life in WWI

Jesse Clipper

Jesse W. Clipper was working as a singer and dancer in Buffalo, New York before he was drafted into the Army for World War I. Unfortunately, he never made it home from that war as he died on February 21, 1919, some three months after the war ended in November 1918. Today, Clipper is remembered as the first Black from Buffalo who sacrificed his life in the First World War. Click here to read more, and learn about ongoing efforts in Buffalo to uncover more information about Clipper’s family, and his life before his service and loss in WWI.

Remembering My Grandfather,
Giovanni Carusone

Giovanni Carusone

World War I Veteran, Italian Immigrant, Proud American, Husband, Father, Grandfather, a Paschall resident of Southwest Philadelphia—and our Hero.” That’s how Denise Clofine starts this profile of her grandfather, who she notes “left Italy telling his mother he was visiting America to see the great land of opportunity. His true intention was to join America in fighting for our freedom.”  Click here to read more, and learn about Carusone’s service during World War I, and his life after the war in in the Paschall neighborhood of Southwest Philadelphia.

Historian chronicles the grassroots work to recognize women’s sacrifices, service during World War I

Forgotten Veterans, Invisible Memorials: How American Women Commemorated the Great War, 1917-1945

Over 16,000 women served overseas during World War I. Yet as Armistice Day marked the war’s final chapter, the stories of women who sacrificed—in overseas hospitals or as wives and mothers back home—were destined to become footnotes. More than a century later, University of Maryland graduate Allison Finkelstein is rewriting that narrative, revealing the grassroots efforts spearheaded by women of the WWI generation to honor this service, not carved in marble statuary, but through community service and advocacy and in hospitals and respite houses. Click here to read more about “Forgotten Veterans, Invisible Memorials: How American Women Commemorated the Great War, 1917-1945” and how the book tells the stories behind “the work to commemorate wartime sacrifices through living memorials—intangible commemorations grounded in continued service to the country.”

Building named for WWI vet Henry Owl, first American Indian student at Carolina

Henry Owl

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has announced that it will honor Cherokee historian and teacher Henry McClain Owl  by placing his name on the Student Affairs building. Owl (1896-1980) was the first American Indian and the first person of color to enroll at the University, as a graduate student in history in 1928. Click here to learn more about Henry Owl’s service in World War I, and his work after the war ended to ensure voting rights for Native Americans.

Talking About War: PTSD in WWI & now

Talking About War

World War I “proved to be a grisly example of the hellishness of war. Technology-enhanced was manufactured, making it easier to kill. Machine guns, rapid-fire artillery, poison gas, and tanks, weapons that could take away life at any time, either in an instant in the best-case scenario, or after agonizing minutes if the soldier was not lucky enough. Talk about the war? The returning veterans of World War I would never want to do that.” So begins Dr. Arturo Osorio’s exploration of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in and after the Great War. Click here to read more, and learn how talking about it–usually the last thing a vet wants to do–is often the best way to begin PTSD recovery.

Digging to Victory: How Bellingham Conserved Food During World War I

Gardening poster

Saving food was a central part of the American home front during World War I. The need for food was dire for America’s soldiers and allies. The conflict had devastated agriculture in Europe as men marched off to war and fields disappeared under shelling. Submarine warfare disrupted international trade. Jennifer Crooks takes a look back at how the people of Bellingham, WA leaned into the campaigns for food conservation. Click here to read more about how schools, businesses, and individuals got onboard with the efforts to conserve key items, and plant gardens to grow their own food.

Woodside, New York’s Doughboy Park Gets New Plaza, Seating Area

Woodside, NY's Doughboy Park

NYC officials recently celebrated the newly reconstructed $1.8 million plaza and seating area in Woodside’s Doughboy Plaza with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The facility now has a brand new bluestone plaza, making it a worthy space to recognize and honor all of the soldiers who gave their lives in service to their country. Click here to read more, and find out how The Returning Soldier statue (later called “The Woodside Doughboy”) erected by the Woodside Community Council in remembrance of the local men and women who served in World War I, has been given a new and much improved setting.

World War I News Digest January 2022

USS Olympia

World War I was The War that Changed the World, and its impact on the United States continues to be felt a century later, as people across the nation learn more about and remember those who served in the Great War. Here’s a collection of news items from the last month related to World War I and America.

USS Olympia: The little cruiser with a battleship’s guns

Ending 2021 on a Positive Note

How World War I Shaped “Lord of the Rings” 

The Devil Dogs of Belleau Wood: US Marines of World War One

American Red Cross of WNY honors unclaimed WWI veterans

WWI nurse Gladys Watkins & the Legion Post Named for her

American Railroads During World War I

WWI nurse from Patchogue, NY receives military honors

Cleanup at WWI chemical weapons dump in D.C.’s Spring Valley 

Ferdinand Foch, WWI commander of Allies, feted in Spokane 

Vancouver’s police chief was ‘Fighting Forester’ in WWI

Doughboy MIA for January 2022

Robert Alsleben

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Our Doughboy MIA this month is Private Robert August Alsleben Company A/308th Infantry Regiment/77th Division.

Robert Alsleben was the 5th of 11 children born to Heinrich (Henry) and Cecelia Alsleben, a family of German immigrant farmers settled in Minnesota. Robert was born 01MAY1894 in Penn Township, McLeod County, Minnesota and worked the family farm up until his induction into the army on 28MAY1918 at New Auburn, Minnesota. He was received into the service at Camp Lewis, Washington in 43rd Company/11th Battalion/166th Depot Brigade until he was transferred to Camp Kearney, near San Diego, California in July and assigned to Company F/160th Infantry/40th ‘Sunshine’ Division. What little training Alsleben received was given here, and that wasn’t much as his unit spent almost half of their time at Camp Kearney (which was only a month) under quarantine for a possible Scarlet Fever outbreak. At the beginning of August, the 40th packed up and boarded trains for the Port of Embarkation at New York, sailing overseas 08AUG1918.

In France, the 40th Division was reassigned as the 6th Depot Division – meaning it became a replacement pool – and filtered its men into combat units depleted by casualties. Private Alsleben was transferred to Company A/308th Infantry/77th Division, being taken onto unit strength upon arrival on 23SEPT1918. Three days later, Company A (along with Company D) spearheaded the 308th’s drive into the Argonne Forest at the opening of the massive Meuse-Argonne Campaign. At this point, Alsleben had been in the army just two days shy of 4 months and had spent better than half of that time either in quarantine or travel.

A statement later given by a comrade says Alsleben was shot through the abdomen and right upper thigh while going over the top on the afternoon of 27SEPT1918, the second day of the Argonne fight, and killed instantly. No one, however, knew anything about his burial and as neither he nor his remains were ever found, he was declared as missing in action on 22OCT1918.

The story then gained new light when an International Red Cross report was received 16 APR1919 that contained a list of names from the Germans and dated 01MAR1919 showing that Alsleben had been captured that same day he was wounded and died of his wounds on 28SEPT1918 at Landwehr Infantry Field Hospital #13 in Grand Pre and had been buried in the German military cemetery there. No grave number was reported however, and when GRS officials went to look for him, they were unable to locate any remains, nor was a grave number found in surviving hospital records.  In 1922, attempts were made by the German government to contact the head doctor who had worked at the hospital, but records do not say if this was successful or not. For a time, it appears there was some speculation Alsleben may have been recovered by the French and moved to the German military cemetery at Buzancy, but records do not say whether this lead was followed up on. Nothing more is known at this time.

Active investigation was suspended in the case in February 1929 and PVT Alsleben is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing at the Meuse-Argonne American Cemetery at Romagne-sous-Montfaucon, France.

Can you spare just ten dollars? Give ‘Ten For Them’ 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. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.

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

Merchandise from the Official
Doughboy Foundation WWI Store

tote bag

Function and style are combined in this lightweight and compact Canvas & Leather Tote. You can show your American pride while carrying this Made in the USA dark khaki tote. Plenty of room for keys, wallet, tablet and documents. A distressed “U.S.” imprint is prominently displayed on the bag and an exclusive fabric garment label commemorates the U.S. Centennial of World War One.

This versatile canvas tote features:

  • Constructed of heavy duty, touch dyed canvas and lined with 400 denier nylon
  • Handles made of 6 Oz. top grain oil tanned leather, backed with 1” webbing
  • Handle is attached to bag with distinctive “X” tacks.
  • Dimensions: 18.5” W (seam to seam) x 13.5”H x 5.0”
  • T-bottom style gusset
  • Vintage Military style makes it great for him or her
  • Made in USA

Proceeds from the sale of these books will help complete the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the Doughboy Foundation.

Virtual Explorer logo new

Click or scan the QR Code below 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.

QR Code for Virtual Explorer App download

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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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Doughboy MIA

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Theodore E. Fournier

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

Theodore  E  Fournier

Submitted by: Brian A. Huseland {great-nephew}

Theodore E Fournier was born around 1899. Theodore Fournier served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1918.

Story of Service

My great-uncle Theodore Everett Fournier served in the 103rd Infantry, Company C. After his parents told Teddy in his teen years that he was adopted, he left home and enlisted in the Minnesota National Guard, 2nd Infantry, finding comfort in serving his country.

In 1916, they patrolled the U.S.-Mexico border because of Pancho Villa’s raids. In 1917, the boys were drafted into the American Expeditionary Forces, and trained at Camp Cody, NM, as part of the 34th “Sandstorm” Division. However, as some American regiments had encountered heavy losses in Europe, the 34th became a replacement division, and was broken up.

Teddy was shipped out from New York City on June 29th, 1918 on the ship Demosthenes. He carried with him standard issue uniform and equipment, and a precious item: an enlisted men’s prayer book. He arrived in mid-July and was assigned to the 103rd about the time of the Meuse-Argonne offensive. After resting and training the new recruits, the regiment boarded trains for Verdun, France. Teddy’s regiment prepared for the St. Mihiel Offensive as part of the 26th Division, encountering occasional gas and gunfire.

Read Theodore E. Fournier ‘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.

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The Doughboy Foundation · PO Box 17586 #123 · Arlington, VA 22216

Please support “Daily Taps at the WWI Memorial”

This item from the formerly named World War One Centennial Commission may be of interest to some of our members.

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Donate >

Bugler playing daily taps at the WWI Memorial

Please Help Make Daily Taps a Reality

Dear Michael,

Almost immediately after the National WWI Memorial in Washington, D.C, opened to the public on April 16, 2021, we teamed up with “Taps for Veterans”  Director Jari Villanueva, a retired military bugler and Taps historian. Our goal was to explore the feasibility for a bugler in WWI uniform sounding taps at the Memorial every evening at 5pm, 7 days a week, rain or shine!

Honoring our Veterans at the WWI Memorial with taps is both an issue of logistics and a matter of financial support.

It was the generosity and financial dedication of some of the program’s early supporters that made it possible to carry this out through the rest of 2021.

Success in ’21 is followed by some exciting news for 2022

First, early in the coming year, we will be announcing the details about a wonderful Founding Sponsor for Daily Taps at the WWI Memorial. Their generous year-end gift is going to carry us well into 2022.

Secondly, this spring we will start to live stream Daily Taps at the WWI Memorial on YouTube with the ability to honor specific veterans, groups or organizations for that day, week or month. The technology is being tested and readied now.

Finally, we are working very hard to build an endowment for the program, large enough to guarantee that this poignant and moving daily tradition will continue at the WWI Memorial in perpetuity – our ultimate goal.

We could really use your help!

Though we made a lot of exciting progress in 2021, we are still in “early days”. We are depending on supporters like you, to help us make this program a living part of daily life in our nation’s capital. Please make a year-end, tax deductible contribution to the Doughboy Foundation for “Daily Taps at the WWI Memorial”.

Make your support “In Honor Of:” to dedicate your donation to someone or something you care about.

We wish all of you a wonderful and safe new year.

Thank you

Dans Signature

Dan Dayton
President, Doughboy Foundation

Click to Donate

The Doughboy Foundation · PO Box 17586 #123 · Arlington, VA 22216

A letter from Doughboy Foundation President Dan Dayton this Veterans Day week

An item from the organization formerly known as the World War One Centennial Commission.

doughboy foundation logo For Mailings

Dear Michael:

November 11th marks the first Veterans Day for the National World War I Memorial in Washington, D.C.  

If you are in the National Capital region, please join us at the Memorial for our Bells of Peace Ceremony.  Special guest, Admiral Mike Mullen, the 17th Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, will join Terry Hamby, Chairman of the U.S. WWI Centennial Commission, and myself for the event.
The Ceremony begins at 10:45am EST and will include a wreath laying, the reading of the Archibald MacLeish poem, “The Young Dead Soldiers Do Not Speak”, the 11am tolling of the Bells of Peace by the Naval History and Heritage Command, and a special performance of Taps echoing from multiple buglers in WWI uniform. The ceremony will remember the WWI Armistice that went into effect at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918, and honor all Americans who served in WWI.

Bugker at wwi memorial

It is the beginning of a poignant 2021 Veterans Day which also marks the centennial of the internment of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery.

The Unknown was chosen from the many unidentified Doughboys who fell in the fields of Europe, to symbolize the service and sacrifice of the 4.7 million who put on the American uniform during WWI.

Across the nation at 11am local, there will be “Bells of Peace” tolling ceremonies held by cities, veterans organizations, DAR Chapters, churches, schools, media organizations and individuals. [CLICK HERE] to learn how you can participate wherever you are.

Also at 11am local, hundreds of buglers organized by Taps for Veterans will sound taps in a “The National Salute.” [CLICK HERE] for more information.

Thank you for taking this Veterans Day to remember all those who served in WWI, the War that Changed the World.

 All the best,


 Dans Signature

Daniel S. Dayton
The Doughboy Foundation


WWI DISPATCH October 2021

A newsletter from the organization formerly known as the World War One Centennial Commission.

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October 2021

Bronze assembled for initial section of memorial at Pangolin in UK.

The first section of the central sculpture for the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC has completed casting and is now assembled at Pangolin Editions sculpture foundry in the UK. Sculptor Sabin Howard recently completed the clay for the second section (the battle scene) and shipped it to the foundry for casting. Howard has begun sculpting the next section (the cost of war) of the four-part sculpture. The entire work is anticipated to be completed and installed at the National World War I Memorial by 2024.

Reminder: Join us for “Bells of Peace” 11/11/21 at 11:00 a.m., at the National WWI Memorial, or wherever you are

Since the centennial of the World War I Armistice in 2018, the Bells of Peace have been tolled in remembrance at 11am on Veterans Day. The national bell tolling commemorates the World War I Armistice – which happened on November 11, 1918 when the guns fell silent, and bells tolled on the Western Front after four years of brutal combat.

Each Veterans Day since 2018, Bells of Peace participants have taken a few moments at the 11th hour local to remember those who served in WWI with a remembrance of a 21-peal bell tolling. Tens of thousands have participated in this ritual including states, cities, municipalities, ships, military installations, churches, schools, veterans’ organizations, museums, and individuals.

For the first time, this year “Bells of Peace” will remember those who served with a ceremony at the National WWI Memorial in Washington, D.C. Click here to read more, and learn how you can participate in Bells of Peace wherever you are on November 11 — even if you don’t have a bell.

Diary of Lost Battalion Soldier from WWI Returning to France 103 Years After

James Larney

103 years ago, Private James Larney, a soldier from Watertown, New York, went to war as a member of the famed 77th ‘Liberty’ Division. Assigned to the Headquarters Company of the 308th Infantry Regiment, his commanding officer was Major Charles Whittlesey, who led his men during one of the most epic events of America’s  WWI – the siege of the ‘Lost Battalion’. Through it all, Larney wrote an amazingly complete record in a diary of everything the 308th Infantry Regiment went through. Now, over the Thanksgiving week of 2021, Lost Battalion historian and author Robert J. Laplander will be returning to France with the diary, taking it back to many of the places where it was born under Larney’s pen. Click here to read more about the upcoming journey, and learn how the Larney family conceived and approved the momentous trip.

The Search for Roman Catholic High School’s Alumni of World War I

Chris Gibbons

” It was December of 2019 when I first came upon the letter from 28th Division Captain Ralph C. Crow to Mrs. Ellen Breen of Philadelphia. Like so many of the letters that I’ve discovered during my now 10-year search for the alumni of Roman Catholic High School who gave their lives in World War I, it was heartbreaking. However, this letter was different, and I was astonished as I read it for it revealed a surprising and unexpected connection related to my search.” So begins Chris Gibbons’ amazing and moving story of his search for the names of the alumni of his Philadelphia high school alma mater who fell in WWI. Click here to read the entire absorbing and fascinating account.

National WWI Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, MO Celebrates 100 Years Since the Site Dedication

Nat WWI Museum square

The National WWI Museum and Memorial celebrates 100 years since the Site Dedication that took place on the North lawn on Nov. 1, 1921. The public is invited to the grounds to see what the heart of Kansas City looked like…100 years ago. On Nov. 1, 1921, more than 100,000 people gathered to see the supreme Allied commanders dedicate the site of what is now the National WWI Museum and Memorial. This was the first time in history these five leaders were together in one place. Now visitors can see what the day looked like by touring the grounds of the Museum and Memorial, and scanning 10 QR codes located on signs scattered across the North Lawn (and two at Union Station!). Each QR code will show the viewer a photo or video taken from that exact location 100 years ago. Click here to read more, and learn about this and others Veterans Day activities at the Museum.

Polar Bear’s WWI bayonets donated to Michigan Heroes Museum

Lois Ullrich

Lois Ullrich was recently rummaging around in her attic when she spotted it – a bundle wrapped with an old blue towel, which her mother had given her years ago and had been promptly relegated to the attic. Lois remembered her mother telling her that it had belonged to her great uncle, Arnold Ullrich, and that he had brought it back with him when he returned home to Mt. Clemens, MI after serving in World War One. Intrigued, she brought the bundle downstairs and opened it for the first time in many years. Inside were two identical steel blades with wooden handles, one bearing a label in her mother’s handwriting that read, “Arnold Ullrich Bayonets W. War I.” Click here to read the whole story of Arnold’s bayonets and the Polar Bear Soldiers of World War I.

Letters From The Western Front: The Correspondence of American Doughboys and American Censorship During The Great War 1917-1918

Scott Kent

The road to Scott Kent’s dissertation topic began several years ago, at the death of his Great Aunt, and the discovery of her older brother Clayton’s army trunk from World War I. The trunk contained Clayton’s personal effects, his citations, some newspaper clippings, a few photos, and most importantly, several hand written letters sent home to his family. Kent at first thought to use these artifacts to recreate the footsteps of his great-uncle, and “compare his experience with that of thousands of other doughboys, thereby adding his voice to the collective memory of the ‘war to end all wars.’” Click here to read more, and learn how an exploration of his great uncle’s wartime experiences “morphed into something much larger.

Ogden Doughboy Statue Restoration Recognized with a 2021 Heritage Award

Ogden plaque

100 Cities, 100 Memorials was a project of the US WWI Centennial Commission, in partnership with the Pritzker Military Museum and Library, offering $200,000 in a matching grant challenge to rescue and focus on 100 local WWI memorials across the nation. These Memorials were then designated as official WWI Centennial Memorials. One designated 100 WWI Centennial Memorial is known as the Ogden Doughboy Statue. Click here to read more about the memorial, and learn how the grant was a catalyst for community-wide effort that has now been recognized with a Heritage Award. 

Bill would name Broad Street in Landsdale, PA for iconic World War I doctor Frank Erdman Boston

Frank Boston plaque

A local Landsdale, PA  icon could soon be honored in his former hometown. The Pennsylvania Senate has voted to approve a bill designating North Broad Street as the “Dr. Frank Erdman Boston Memorial Highway.” Said state Sen. Bob Mensch, R-24th, who sponsored the bill to rename the road, “The life and accomplishments of Dr. Boston are a testament to what materializes from the best qualities in a human being. His selflessness, respect for life, dedication to his neighbors and unwavering commitment to do good serve as an inspiration for all and are the reasons we should be celebrating his legacy for generations to come,” he said. Click here to learn more about Dr. Frank Boston, his service in World War I, and his amazing accomplishments after the war in his native Pennsylvania.

Marjorie Kay: nurse, WWI Yeoman(F), actress, singer, theatrical agent

Marjorie Kay

Marjorie Griffin Kay enlisted in the U.S. Navy on October 22, 1918, serving as a Yeoman (F) during World War I.  Being a pioneer in the service of women in the American military is quite an accomplishment, but for Marjorie, this was but one on a long and colorful list of professional accomplishments, including Red Cross nurse, actress, model, singer…well, click here to read her whole fascinating story, and learn how (did I forget to mention?) she was also a pioneer in plastic surgery.

World War I Artillery and 1800s Currency Found in Lansing, MI Family’s Home

Lansing artillery round

One Lansing, Michigan family got quite the shock while going through a family member’s house, and found a rather large WWI artillery round among other items in the home being emptied. The Michigan State Police bomb squad was brought in to thoroughly inspect the device, and an x-ray of it found that the round was not live and posed no threat. However, that was not the end of the story. Click here to read more, and learn how, without any explosives involved, the family got a real bang out of the remarkable World War I souvenir.

Disparaged President Herbert Hoover was Great Humanitarian in World War I

Herbert Hoover

Herbert Hoover’s fall from grace during his presidency (1928-1932) has been well documented, but his initial rise to greatness — when he became known to the world as a Great Humanitarian — has all but been forgotten, according to “Yanks behind the Lines” author Jeffrey B. Miller, who is the first historian in more than thirty years to focus his three award-winning nonfiction books on Hoover’s WWI efforts in German-occupied Belgium. Click here to read more about the new book, and learn how Hoover’s Commission for Relief in Belgium organization “helped change the way Americans saw themselves and how the world saw America.” 

The Houston Riot of 1917 featured in current The Black History Bulletin

Houston Riot

The current issue of The Black History Bulletin (Volume 84, No.1) features the theme “THE POWER OF PROTEST: THEN AND NOW.” The Houston Riot of 1917, one of the most important incidents impacting Black military service in World War I, is probed in “Black Soldiers and Revolution: The Houston Riot of 1917.” Examining the effect of the Houston Riot on all Americans, the article includes a lesson plan for teachers. More than 380,000 Black Soldiers and Sailors served in World War I. Click here to read more, and learn how the Houston Riot of 1917 and other incidents “had a similar impact on Black Americans’ perceptions of World War I service.

German Commerce Raiders Built a Village in America’s Most Important Shipyard During World War I

German village in Portsmouth VA

For a brief period during World War I, “over there” became “over here.” More specifically, it was the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, where German sailors tried to wait out British ships off the coast of the then-neutral United States. They even reconstructed a slice of Germany along the Virginia shoreline. Click here to read more, and learn how the crews of the German ships Kronprinz Wilhelm and the Prinz Eitel Friederich built a charming (but short-lived) “German Village” on Navy Yard property along the Elizabeth River in Portsmouth.

Darien, CT Veteran Street Sign on Herman Ave to Honor WWI Veteran Carmelo Roda

Carmelo A. Roda

Carmelo A. Roda was born in Reggio, Calabria, Italy in 1896. At age 17, Roda traveled to the U.S. alone, arriving at Ellis Island on Aug. 1, 1913. He settled in Stamford, CT, and less than five years later was fighting in the U.S. Army during World War I while still an Italian citizen. He was severely wounded in action on July 19, 1918, and received a Purple Heart. On Sunday, November 7, 2021 Roda will become the latest recipient of the Veteran Street Sign Honor in Darien, CT. Click here to read more about this recognition of Carmelo Roda’s active service during wartime and his community involvement in the Town of Darien upon return from his duties during World War I.

World War I monument in Lynchburg, VA to be moved to new location

Lynchburg Memorial

A World War I monument at E.C. Glass High School in Lynchburg, VA will be moved this month to a new location at Jones Memorial Library, just a half-mile down Memorial Avenue. At 2 p.m. Nov. 6 at Jones Memorial Library, the Lynchburg Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution will hold a rededication ceremony revealing the monument at its new home, combined with a program to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Tomb of the Unknowns. Click here to read more, and learn how changes in the memorial’s original location had created the desire to move the monument for a while due to its lack of visibility.

Decorated American World War I flying ace also served in World War II

Col. H. Weir Cook

Travelers through the Indianapolis International Airport who enter the passenger-ticketing terminal pass by a 7-foot statue and wall display honoring the namesake of the structure, Col. H. Weir Cook, a pioneer of early U.S. aviation. But Cook was also a highly decorated World War I flying ace, American Legion staff director, and trainer of World War II combat pilots. He died in the South Pacific Theater at age 50, believed to have been the only World War I ace to have also enlisted for combat service in World War II. Click here to read more about this aviation hero of two wars, who believed that to have not volunteered for WWII combat service “would have left me feeling that I should be hanged as a traitor to my country.

Patton and WWI’s Unknown Soldier

George Patton

In 1921, Major George S. Patton Jr. held an important role during ceremonies for America’s World War I Unknown Soldier. The man who would become an iconic general, known for commanding victorious armies in World War II, was then the commander of the 3rd Cavalry Regiment’s 3rd Cavalry Squadron. On November 9, 1921, Patton helped escort the Unknown Soldier’s casket from the USS Olympia to the U.S. Capitol, where the Unknown would lie in state for two days. On November 11, the day of the Unknown’s burial ceremony, he marched in the procession that escorted the casket to Arlington National Cemetery. Click here to read more, and learn how Patton and his unit participated in the ceremonies for the first Unknown.

Why Germany wanted to ban America’s pump-action shotgun during World War I

Trench shotgun

By the end of World War I, the Winchester model 1897 pump-action shotgun had gained a nasty reputation across no man’s land on the Western Front. Despite the emergence of numerous novel weapons technologies, including mechanized armor, soaring warplanes, various chemical gases, and flamethrowers, the most feared American weapon, from the German perspective, was this infamous “trench shotgun.” Click here to read more, and learn how the shotgun carried “more terrors into the hearts of the enemy than any other instrument of destruction that has been used.

Doughboy MIA for October 2021

James G. Mason

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Our Doughboy MIA this month is PFC James G. Mason.

James Griffing Mason was born 10 December 1897 in Dublin, Georgia. The son of James D. and Cassie G. Mason, he was 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 42nd went 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 at www.usww1cc.org/mia. 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 WWI, and keeps these lost men from being forgotten. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Merchandise from the Official
Doughboy Foundation WWI Store

Poppy Mask

“Remember them” Poppy Face Mask

  • A Doughboy.shop exclusive!
  • High quality, dual-layer, machine washable fabric
  • Outer: 100% Cotton jersey knit
  • Inner: Polyester 135gsm with Anti-Microbial protection
  • Adjustable elastic ear straps for a comfortable fit
  • Flexible wire frame over the nose for secure fit
  • Width: 9.5” / 24cm x Height: 6” /15.5cm
  • Screen printed poppy design “Remember Them” inscription
  • One size – fits most adults

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

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the Doughboy Foundation.

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Click or scan the QR Code below 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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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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Doughboy MIA

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George Koenig

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

George Koenig

Submitted by: George Carter {Grandson}

My Grandfather, George Koenig, was very proud of his U.S. Army service in World War I as part of the American Expeditionary Force.

(Note: Most of this information is from the personal diary that he kept while in the Army. Some of his notes are difficult to read or decipher, so this summary is a best effort supplemented by his official U.S. Army Discharge and Enlistment records, as well as the history of the U.S. Army 3rd Division, troopship rosters, newspaper and other historical references.)

He joined the Army on June 24, 1918 at the age of 25 from his home state of Minnesota and, after completing basic training, was soon shipped overseas. He arrived in Le Harve, France on October 4, 1918 and was then sent to Camp Hunt in the Southwest of France. He was stationed at Camp Hunt until November 11, 1918 (Armistice Day).

Beginning on November 11, his unit traversed France from west to east through Bordeaux, Orleans, Tours, St. Dizier, Troys, Tronville, and Rombach near the German border, arriving on November 21, 1918.

Read George Koenig’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.

Fundraising Progress Maquette ony 900K to go