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Madison County During World War I

 

Our Soldiers - Their Stories

 

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BAVAS, NICK

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 10, 1919           Wounded Soldier Finds Trouble at Home in Obtaining Citizenship

A naturalization bureau examiner came to Alton today to hear claims of discharged soldiers for citizenship papers under the new law, which permits issuance of certificates of citizenship at once to them. One of the cases was that of nick Bavas, a Greek, who was the man first drawn in the draft in the Alton Exemption Board district. Nick, fighting in France when his naturalization case came up for hearing, had no one at home to speak for him and ask a continuance of his case. The court officers did not know about Nick evidently, and so the case of Nick Bavas was dismissed last May. This was the sorrowful discovery that Nick Bavas made when he called in the office of the clerk of the court to get his final papers. Nick could not understand why it was that no one remembered last May he had gone to fight for the colors. He had much newspaper publicity at the time he waived all claims to exemption, though an alien, said he wanted most of all to be an American and to fight for the American flag. Nick was sent to camp by the local Exemption Board, and was quickly sent over. He was wounded in the leg and was sent back home after the armistice. He was wounded in the leg and was sent back home after the armistice. He has recovered and went to work last week. Nick had to borrow two dollars from a friend in the courtroom so he could get himself reinstated on the docket. The naturalization examiner assured Nick that he would be able to get his final papers May 5. The worst part of it all to Nick was that it was necessary to pay a penalty of $4 because he happened to be in France fighting the Germans when his case came up. He announced he would surely be in the court May 5 to perfect his American citizenship. Two years after he came to this country he applied for citizenship. His case had been pending ever since, and it was a sorrowful event for him when he found that he was out of court. Lucky the examiner was here and examined him and promised to make report on his case so Nick would have no trouble or delay May 5.

 

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BETTS, ELDEN (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving First Lieutenant in Infantry.

 

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BLAKE, EUGENE
Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 29, 1919                           Young Veteran of Many Battles Dies From Appendicitis
Eugene Blake, recently returned from France, where he had the distinction of going over the top five times, died last night at St. Joseph's Hospital during an operation for relief from appendicitis. He was 24 years old. Blake made his home in Wood River before leaving with a contingent of drafted men, and has lived there since his discharge from the service. In France he was attached to the 30th division, 119th Infantry, to which were attached Sydney Gaskins and Albert Rupert of Alton. Gaskins is home, having been wounded and discharged, while Rupert died in action. Rupert was talking to Blake just before the time he was killed. He was a collector of buttons from the uniforms of German officers, and on the day he was killed said to Blake: "I guess I'll have to go out and get some more buttons." It was shortly after that he was killed. Blake was in many battles in the region of the Argonne forest, where American soldiers participated in some of the most sanguinary battles of the war. He escaped serious injury in many of the fierce battles. After "going over" five times his arm was shattered with shrapnel. He lay for two months in an English hospital, and for some time it was thought his arm would have to be amputated. For a time fears were felt for his life. The hero of many battles who had withstood the supreme test of facing death and refused to give up when it seemed impossible to save his arm, worked until three o'clock Tuesday afternoon at the Standard Oil Co. refining plant at Wood River, where he was employed. On Tuesday he was taken to the hospital and last night he died. Blake was a son of Mr. and Mrs. John Blake, formerly of Alton. The father is at present residing in Arcadia, Fla. He leaves two sisters at Jacksonville, and two sisters and a brother at Arcadia in Florida. He was a nephew of Mrs. E. J. Morrissey of this city. The funeral probably will be held in Alton, but no arrangements have been made.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 31, 1919

The funeral of Eugene Blake, son of Mr. and Mrs. John Blake of Jacksonville, Florida, will be held from the Cathedral on Monday morning at 9 o'clock. Blake died Wednesday night at St. Joseph's Hospital while undergoing an operation for appendicitis. The body will be taken to the home of E. J. Morrissey on Prospect street, Sunday morning early, and will remain there until time for the funeral on Monday. Mrs. John Blake will arrive on Sunday from Florida to attend the funeral. The father has been in this vicinity since the middle of May.

 

[Editor's note: Eugene Blake could not be included with the casualties of World War I since he died after his return, but I felt his story needed to be told, and included on this webpage.]

 

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BOYNTON, WILLIAM P.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 5, 1919

Private William P. Boynton, of the Marine Corps, arrived home Friday evening for a thirty day furlough. Mr. Boynton had changed so much in appearance as the result of exposure in a tropical climate and the hard training which he underwent in the Marine Corps, many of his friends had difficulty in recognizing him at first. He is in good condition, though much lighter in weight than when he left Alton, but much darker in color. He is very glad to be back home, even for a thirty day furlough, and he is hopeful that by the time his leave of absence has expired he will have been given his discharge from the service, as he is needed at home. Mr. Boynton said today that before he left the Navy Yard at New York, he asked if he would be required to wear his uniform all the time he was home, and he was told that he must not wear citizens clothes. His application for discharge was acted upon, but he fears the papers have become lost, which accounts for the delay in getting him out of the service. Mr. Boynton said that he had just learned that many people had been talking of him for mayor during his absence. He said that under no circumstances could he have considered being a candidate, that he would have been for Mr. Sauvage, and that when Mrs. Boynton gave out the statement on her own authority that he would not under any consideration be a candidate, she did exactly right. His first work, when he gets back home, will be to attempt rebuilding his legal practice, which has been somewhat scattered during his absence. He says that when he is discharged he must go back to the Navy Yard to go through the formality.

 

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BURRIS, ROZEL

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving commission in the Quartermaster Department for Second Lieutenant.

 

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BUSSE, BURT

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 26, 1919

Burt Busse, measuring six feet, three inches in height, and weighing 230 pounds, arrived home this morning after 16 months of service in France. busse is one of Alton's biggest soldiers, and would qualify for a crack regiment which would make the giants of the Prussian Guards look like a company of dwarfs. The army officials chose Busse as a model military police, and Burt was placed in that service. Such an efficient M. P. [Military police] did he make, that at the time of his discharge he was provost sergeant of Marseilles [France]. Busse has been discharged from the service. He was a former Alton High, Shurtleff, and Louisian State football and basketball player.

 

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CAHILL, DAVID

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 20, 1919

David E. Cahill is on his way home from Europe according to a letter received by his brother Dan, well known Belle street grocer. The letter was written in Alencon, France, and told of the time when his division, the 37th, would sail for America. Since then it has sailed and is now well across. He enclosed several pictures of the barracks and of a funeral procession for a soldier who died recently. Six sergeants were pallbearers, and the services were impressive. All the men were present, and even the Major General Commanding, H. F. Garnsworth, was there. David sent home a large map of France upon which he marked with red ink the routes taken by himself since leaving Liverpool, England. According to the red lines there are but few spots in France the boys did not fight through or visit after licking the Hun. Mr. Cahill left Alton with a contingent for Camp Taylor October 5th, 1917, and was with Ed Kuieryl for months.

 

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CALDWELL BROTHERS (FRANK and HENRY)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 31, 1918

Edward J. Klienpeter today received word that two nephews, Frank and Henry Caldwell, will go to France together in the 84th division, tough they were sent to camp separately. Frank is in the infantry, and Henry in the cavalry band. They both went to Camp Taylor, and now they are at Camp Sherman. They have been put into the same division, which will insure their going to France together.

 

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CALLAHAN, JAMES T. JR.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 14, 1919

James T. Callahan [Sr.] today received a letter from Corporal John B. Schofield, executive officer of Camp Pike, Ark., in which that officer stated that he had been directed by the commanding officer, Major General Peter E. Traub, to notify Mr. Callahan that his son, Sergeant James T. Callahan Jr., will be discharged on or about June 17. Jimmie Callahan was among the first of the Alton boys to leave for camp in 1917, and his term of service has been almost two years. He has been attached to the medical corps most of the time, and during the flu epidemic when soldiers were dying by the wholesale, was one of the few attendants left on duty in his particular part of the camp. His working partner died after a few hours illness, after the two of them had successfully administered to sufferers for ten days or two weeks, almost all of the time day and night, but Jimmie escaped the fatal summons at least.

 

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CHALK, WILLIAM P.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 10, 1917

William P. Chalk, one of the Alton boys who went to war in the 16th U. S. regulars during the war with Spain, has re-enlisted for service in the army, this time for the war with Germany. When war with Spain was declared, Chalk was one of the Alton boys who hurried to get into the army. He enlisted in the regulars, not waiting for a volunteer call to be made, and he was among those who were sent to Cuba and fought in the Battle of San Juan Hill, the only real fight there was in the war with Spain, in which the army participated. He gave gallant service there, knows what it is to be under a fire, and will make a good soldier. For the present he is serving as clerk at Jefferson Barracks, but will undoubtedly be given other work to do when occasion arises, and the friends of Will Chalk have no doubt he will acquit himself well. He is believed to be the first of the veterans of the war with Spain to go from Alton.

 

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CLARK, WILBUR

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 11, 1919

Mrs. Charles T. Clark is a very happy mother, as two of her three sons in service have returned home. Mrs. Clark has a family of 7 children, and three out of the seven went into service. The remainder of the family consists of a small boy and three daughters. The last of January Walter Clark returned home, and last evening Wilbur Clark came in unexpectedly, bringing a special discharge from the navy. After 15 months in foreign waters, Wilbur returned to New York thirty days ago, and while there received his honorable discharge. He sent no word of his coming home, and his arrival was a very pleasant surprise. The third, Edwin P., is in the marines and is stationed at Philadelphia. The mother has received no word as when Edwin will receive his discharge, but hopes it will be shortly.

 

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COBINE A.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 19, 1918                Furloughed Soldier is Accidentally Shot

A. Cobine, an army cook whose home is at Wood River, was accidentally shot Saturday while at home on furlough. Cobine was handling a revolver and it was accidentally discharged, the bullet entering his left arm above the elbow and coming out below the elbow without striking a bone, and making only a flesh wound. Dr. Mather Pfeiffenberger telegraphed to Benjamin Harrison asking that the furlough of Cobine be extended at the request of the wounded man, as Cobine was supposed to leave at once for Ft. Benjamin Harrison, his furlough having expired. A telegram came back refusing to grant the extension and ordering Cobine to report forthwith at Benjamin Harrison. The doctor said he could make the trip without any bad consequences, he believed, as the wound was not of a serious character.

 

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COLEMAN, JAMES (LIEUTENANT)

The parents of Dr. James Coleman, the well known young Alton dentist who entered the army as a member of the Dental Corps with rank of First Lieutenant, have received a cablegram which has done much to relieve the anxiety caused by the receipt of two letters, one Monday and one Tuesday, telling of his serious illness. The letters said that he was very seriously sick with pneumonia in France, where he has been stationed, and naturally much anxiety followed at home. This was relieved by a cablegram which said he was much better, received Tuesday night, and it also said that he would be home as soon as he was able to travel. Lieut. Coleman is one of the most popular young men in Alton. He had been getting a start in the practice of the dental profession in Alton, and gave up everything to go into the service of his country. Recently he wrote to the Telegraph telling of his meeting Alton boys at every place he had visited in the course of some travels he made in the line of duty.

 

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CONWAY, JOHN

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 9, 1919

Perhaps because they both had known intimately the seamy side of life, is the reason why Mme. Ernestine Schumann Heink, the great contralto, has offered to adopt as her son, John Conway, a young man who was once an inmate of the Cathedral Orphanage. His father, a railroad man, died when John was a little boy. His mother, struggling hard to keep her family together, died in Alton and was buried in Greenwood Cemetery. Johnny, a tiny tot, was sent to the orphanage, and it looked like Johnny's middle name was trouble, and he never could separate himself from it. But the war, bringing the world to know what real trouble is, has, in the process of making sorrow for others, made Johnny Conway realize that there is another than the seamy side. Johnny holds as his greatest possession today, a letter, which came to him from the hand and pen of the great contralto, E. Schumann Heink, in which Johnny Conway is told that anything that money and education can bring him is his, if he will but say the word. He may go to Leland Stanford University in California at the expense of the great contralto; he may call her his mother if he chooses; he may live in her palatial home in California if that suits him - all the gift of his real fairy godmother, the woman who perhaps has surmounted more evil and achieved more than any other living woman. All of this because the war deprived Mme. Schumann Heink of one of her sons, she writes to Johnny. One son was wounded and one was killed. One in the American, one in the Germany army. Now the big mother heart of the great contralto wants to help someone else. She met Johnny Conway after he had enlisted in the navy, just as the war broke out, and he was sent to the Great Lakes Training Station. There, Schumann Heink came to sing, and though she was charged with lack of patriotism, untruthfully, she sought out some "godsons" whom she would adopt for the duration of the war. She adopted a number of them, the story goes, but it is evident that of them all, she has singled out Johnny Conway, the one-time forlorn orphan who lived in the Prospect street orphanage. Johnny served on the Mercury, making ten trips across the ocean while his ship served as a convoy for troop ships. At New York, Schumann Heink's name was like magic. It got Johnny entrance to many a place where he never dreamed he could go, when he was a poor little orphan. Johnny got to know the great folks of New York, just like the stories in the fairy books. One of the most distinguished families in New York was the place where his mail was addressed, and Mme. Schumann Heink wrote him often and he wrote her. A few days ago Johnny Conway received a letter which was written by Mme. Schumann Heink, in which she says she has had trouble in keeping informed about him, and she wanted to keep close in touch. She made Johnny an offer, extending her godmothership relation for good, and offering Johnny a real home and a real income and a real education, if he will accept all of them from her. She sent him also a check for $50 to help him have some luxuries he might not otherwise have, and as an earnest of her interest in him, Johnny Conway is going to take the offer as it is given. He is going to accept Mme. Schumann Heink as his mother, and his friends say that he has the mental capacity and the inclination to accept a good education, such as she offers him.

 

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COOPER, HENRY

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 12, 1918

Mrs. Margaret N. Cooper of Moro received a telegram today stating that her son, Henry Cooper, was seriously ill with the Spanish influenza at Camp Custer, Battle Creek, Mich.  Cooper left Alton in a late contingent for the Michigan contingent.

 

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COPPINGER, LUCIAN B.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving a commission of Second Lieutenant in Infantry.

 

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COULTER, ISAAC H. (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 22, 1919

Lieut. Isaac H. Coulter, who is stationed at an aviation field at San Antonio, Tex., is home on a furlough and is visiting relatives at 1726 Main street. Lieut. Coulter will take part in the army and navy balloon race at St. Louis on next Friday. He will represent the army with Lieut. Col. J. W. Wuest and Lieut. Huffman of Ft. Omaha, Lieut. Hine of San Antonio, and Capt. Phillips and Lieut. Burt of Langley Field, Va.  Six balloons will start in the race for the championship of military service in long distance competition. The War and Navy Departments have chosen the names of their representatives, and the Alton officer was among those chosen by the War Department. A silver trophy has been donated by the Missouri Aeronautical Reserve Corps to go to the department winning the race.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 18, 1919

Lieut. Isaac Coulter is soon to get his discharge from the army if his present plans are carried out. Lieut. Coulter was scheduled to start today from the camp in Texas where he has served as an instructor in the balloon corps for Scott Field near East St. Louis, where he will be discharged. The young man has been a most successful balloon man since being in the army, and he was so good in the work that he was placed at the camp in Texas to instruct recruits in the balloon work after he had been given his commission. Mrs. Coulter was with him some time ago in Texas, but when he came here a few weeks ago for the balloon races in St. Louis, she remained here as he was soon to be given his discharge. The young couple will probably make their home in Alton.

 

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COUSLEY, GORDON (SERGEANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 30, 1919

One of the last of the Alton boys who served during the war is expected to be back in this country before long. Gordon Cousley, who has been in Siberia at Vladivostock, is believed to be in the last contingent of soldiers who have seen service in Siberia who are on their way back home. He was a reservist, and expected to be one of the last to be released. Press dispatches say that the last of the soldiers in Siberia have been shipped for home, and the last shipload should arrive some time early in February, as the voyage takes about five weeks. Two Alton boys saw active service in Siberia, Cousley being a sergeant in the headquarters company of the Thirty-First Infantry, and being held until the last of the men were ready to be sent home for discharge. He has been in Siberia sixteen months.

 

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DEEM, ROY L.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 21, 1919

Roy L. Deem, who for several months was on a torpedo boat destroyer, and who was on the other side for four months, arrived home last night. He has been released from active service in the navy. Deem was on the destroyer Balch, and has visited England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, France, the Gibraltar region, the Azores, and several other countries. His boat was part of the fleet which convoyed President Wilson into Brest on his first trip to France. His destroyer was in many submarine chases, and though not officially credited with sinking a submarine, he says oil frequently appeared on the surface of the water after the crew of his boat had dropped depth charges.

 

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EWERT, A. F. (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 17, 1919        Former Chaplain Speaks for Liberty Loan - Describes Fighting at Chateau Thierry in France

Lieut. A. F. Ewert, formerly a chaplain with the 77th Division, made an impassioned plea for the Fifth Liberty Loan at Board of Trade luncheon at the Mineral Springs Hotel today. Most of the people of the organization for the Fifth Loan were present, and the luncheon took the form of a preliminary meeting the loan organization. E. B. Seitz, head of the speakers' division of the Loan organization, presided. Lieut. Ewert declared that it was enthusiasm and spirit, the enthusiasm of an American, that won the war and must make the Victory Loan a success. As a speaker, the Lieutenant demonstrated what he meant by enthusiasm of the American kind. He vividly described the "two pictures" chosen by himself of the trip overseas, and the fighting at Chateau Thierry. He praised the work of the American navy in glowing terms, and immortalized the work of the men of the army. He opened his address by speaking of Elijah Lovejoy, martyred in Alton for his defense of freedom for the slaves. It was his enthusiasm and his spirit that led him to his stand on the question of his time, Lieut. Ewert said. It is this enthusiasm, this spirit, this determination to do a thing and do it well, which will make the Victory Loan a success. This enthusiasm is Americanism, Lieut. Ewert said. It is part of the heritage of an American. In presenting what he termed "two pictures," Lieut. Ewert described the trip overseas and the conditions at Chateau Thierry. In speaking of German egotism, he said the Germans declared that at the very outside America could send no more than 500,000 to the battlefields to fight. "And they had mathematics to prove it, so confident were they of their submarines," Lieut. Ewert said. "Mathematics don't lie, but mathematicians are not always so truthful." He called the assembling of missions of men in the cantonments in America a miracle. They trained with that enthusiasm and spirit which is Americanism. He then described the trip across, telling how every company on a ship is assigned to its place, and each man to his work in case the ship is torpedoed. He told of the systematic work of the convoy. On the third day out from France, more destroyers came out to meet the ship and its convoys. Every one of them was an American boat, the Lieutenant said. He described the appearance of a submarine and its final sinking by a destroyer. He vividly told of the discharge of depth bombs dropped by the destroyers where the submarine was thought to be. In describing the entrance of American troops into the fighting at Chateau Thierry, Lieut. Ewert said the French had been discouraged by the successes and gradual advance of the Germans. He said he had remarked that he thought the advance of the Germans would make the French resistance greater even after years of war. The French colonel to whom he was talking said: "Resist with the Germans attacking Paris?" This was virtually the first time Americans were sent against the Germans, Lieut. Ewert said. They had been in light skirmishes in another region, but at Chateau Thierry they really faced the Germans for the first time. Against the Americans were the Prussian Guards, the pride of the German army. While in Germany in 1913, Ewert said he saw the Prussian Guards drilling before the imperial palace at Potsdam. Their every movement, he said today, was perfect. They performed the most intricate military movements with perfection. Though their work was the last word in military training, the fact impressed upon him most was that each of the man was a veritable giant. Every one was six feet or more tall. At the time he wrote home, Ewert said they were all "seven feet tall." It was this branch of the German army which was pitted against the Americans; this army which was to be the greatest group of fighting men in the world. With the great discipline, and more than 40 years of training, they faced the young Americans who were fighting for the first time. When the Americans saw them coming, they yelled: "Come on, damn you, come on!"  "The Prussians came," said Lieut. Ewert, "and when the fighting was finished the great Prussian Guards had been driven back five miles." The former chaplain concluded his address by saying that on the breast of every American soldier was carried something which inspired him. It was carried in his pocket, concealed. It was not to be seen. At the battlefront were work, tragedy, death. Here, he displayed a small silk American flag. All those present stood in respect of the flag. He described the flag as the "banner of the world's dawn." In the Victory Loan, we at home must match the achievements of the boys who fought, the Lieutenant said. The work of America is not done until every debt has been paid, and every boy returned to his home.

 

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FAIRMAN, CHARLES

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 2, 1919

Mr. and Mrs. Oliver G. Stelle, of Upper Alton, received word this morning that their nephew, Charles Fairman, has been signally honored by the War Department by having been ordered to report at once to the University of Illinois at Champaign as Professor of Military Science and Tactics. Fairman was a First Lieutenant at Camp Taylor, Louisville, Ky., where he, and from which post, is being transferred. Lieutenant Fairman left Alton in May 1918. He was too young to get into the regular service, but secured entrance to the Fourth Officers' Training Camp at Camp Grant. He became 21 years of age last July, and after securing a lieutenancy at Camp Grant, was transferred to Camp Taylor. Lieutenant Fairman was a student at the University of Illinois before entering the service. At the University he has won the rank of Cadet Colonel. Lieutenant Fairman is the son of the late Attorney Willis Fairman of Alton, and a grandson of the late Charles Fairman, who for over twenty-five years occupied the chair of mathematics at Shurtleff College.

 

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FLORI, JOE

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 7, 1918

Philip Flori today received from his brother, Joe, who is in France, a German helmet which Joe had taken from a German prisoner. It is a cumbersome looking thing, and it feels just as cumbersome as it looks. It weighs eight pounds, and came from France by parcel post. It cost 24 cents to bring it more than 3,000 miles, the soldiers probably having a reduced rate given them. It is on exhibition in a window at the Flori Brothers store at Fourth and Belle streets.

 

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FLUENT, WILLIAM D. (CAPTAIN), ENLISTS IN MARINE CORPS AT 64 YEARS OF AGE

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 10, 1918

Buoyant and vigorous and filled with a spirit of patriotism, Captain William D. Fluent, although he confesses to 64 years of age, has enlisted in the United State Marine service, and is awaiting call to go into training. Captain Fluent applied last Thursday at the St. Louis recruiting station for enlistment in the Marine Corps. He passed an almost perfect physical examination. On account of his age he was told that his acceptance by the St. Louis recruiting officers would require further endorsement by the war department. He received notice this morning to be ready to report on twenty-four hours' call. Officers of the recruiting station told Capt. Fluent that his age would probably not prevent him entering the service, especially since his physical qualifications come up to such a high standard. He learned, after enlisting, that a recent order places the Marine age limit at 50 years, but the receipt of instructions to be in readiness for immediate call satisfies him that he will be called for duty. Capt. Fluent said this morning that in all probability he will be assigned to one of the patrol boats which is engaged in guarding shipping off the Florida coast. His experience as a boatman and machinist would indicate, at least, that he will be placed in that branch of the service. Capt. Fluent is one of the best known and most daring river men in Alton, where he has been a useful citizen for the past thirty-seven years. He maintained a ferry until this season, when he found it impossible, through ill fortune, to continue. He has been a valuable man for years in connection with his activities along the river. He had a lucrative business in past years as boat liveryman and has always been popular among boating parties who patronized excursion launches which he formerly maintained. During his career as a river man in Alton, Capt. Fluent has saved the lives of many swimmers and persons in boating accidents. He has made no arrangements for the disposition of his fleet of boats and barges. He said that it would be difficult to dispose of the property on account of it being detached from land. When the call comes to leave, Capt. Fluent will abandon his fleet if he has not succeeded in the meantime in selling it.

 

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GENT, ARTHUR

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 19, 1919

Arthur Gent, former Alton star soccer football player, has returned home after eleven months' fighting in the trenches of France. Art is carrying the wristwatch of the German soldier who came very close to giving him a fatal wound. As it was, Art killed the German and brought the watch home as a memento of the occasion. The watch is of German design and is very unusual since the dial moves. There is a hole for the hour and a little indicator for the minutes. You read time on the watch by the hour number that appeared at the hole and minutes opposite the indicator. Gent has seen some fighting since he left Alton. He did not wait for the United States to enter the war, but went in with the Canadian infantry and fought with them during the entire war. He was in the trenches 11 months, was wounded by shrapnel twice - once in the head and another time in the back - and he suffered a bayonet wound as well as being gassed. He was under treatment three months as the result of being gassed. It was in the fight that he received the bayonet wound that he won his watch and killed a German. "It was when we were doing street fighting in one of the little villages of France," Gent told.  "If the German would have let me take another step, he would have killed me because he was hiding behind the corner of a building and I did not see him. But he jumped out too quickly, and the blow that was expected to go through my body just grazed my wrist. Before he could recover his balance, I killed him."

 

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GOUDIE, HARRY

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 29, 1917

Among the men who will go to Camp Taylor next Friday is Harry Goudie of Alton, who was rejected by the examiners here because of a physical defect. He went to the hospital, was operated upon to cure the trouble, and is now reported by himself to be ready to go to Camp Taylor to take up training. Another young man, who said he was the head of a family, applied this morning to withdraw his exemption claim, which had been allowed. He is the head of a family consisting of wife and child. The man told the local board that he had talked it over with his wife, that she was satisfied with his being taken into the army, as he said he could send back enough money to assist her and she could work. He denied that there was any trouble in his home, and said that he wanted to go and felt it his duty to do so. On the other hand, the board is received more or less complaining from women who say their husbands have been certified as soldiers leaving the families in trouble. The local board is disinclined now to listen to the pleas of any man who has a wife and child, and wants to go to the army, unless the family is well enough fixed financially to insure the family being cared for.

 

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GRANER, FRED

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 22, 1919

Fred Graner is on his way home from France, according to information received by relatives of his, that the 119th Infantry, of which he is a member, is crossing the ocean. There are several other Alton boys in that regiment also, and it is presumed they are on the way. Fred left a bride here when he went to fight, and when he returns he will find a fine, little, lustry duplicate of himself waiting to welcome him. He has been in France more than a year.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 9, 1919

"Tis a Long Way to Tipperary," but Fred Graner made the round trip before he was "shivereed." He also visited England, France, Belgium and Germany since he married, the visiting being done to entertain the Huns with shrapnel, rifle balls, and everything, and the neighbors last evening did not understand just what all the noise was about when a gang of Fred's friends of bachelor days surrounded the home at Fourth and Spring streets where he and his wife went to housekeeping after he returned from the war a few weeks ago. They could not imagine who the newlyweds could be. Mr. Graner married a Delhi young lady in September 1917, at the Springfield State Fair, and kept the matter secret. Later in the fall, he went to France. during his absence a son was born to him and his wife, and this lad was an honored guest at the party last night. The serenaders were armed with four circular saws and hammers enough to equip a big force of carpenters, and they used the hammers industriously. Cow bells were ringing, throats were yelling, and there was more fuss than a district school turned out for recess. After they tired a bit, they were invited into the house and a social time followed. Refreshments were served, and the serenaded couple received congratulations and best wishes. A feature of the evening's amusement was a heated argument indulged in by all present, as to whether Paul Bosehert or John Hurley will be the next to commit matrimony. Both were present, and each was certain he will never, never marry - never with each of them meaning probably, until he gets ready.

 

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HANSON, JACK

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 21, 1919

The people of Commercy, France, and the soldiers of the 88th Division and the 24th Balloon company of the army, know there is such a place as Alton, Illinois, and that it claims as citizens lads who can fight, box, knock down or drag out, as occasion may demand. The New York Herald publishes a cablegram from Commercy, which tells about the big boxing bouts held there, and says in part: "The 35th Division delighted a big crowd in the amphitheater tonight, when the 35th Division athletes made a clean sweep of the entire five inter-division boxing bouts. Chaplain Blackman "The Fighting Parson" of the 35th refereed." The follows [sic] a list of events and names of winners, and of these last one interests Alton.  "Lightweight championship - Jack Hanson of Alton, Ill., 35th Division, won from Corporal Whitty, Balloon School, in four rounds."  Jack Hanson is widely known in Alton and has always been popular with his acquaintances, but they did not know about his lightweight boxing efficiency. In a letter received from him by Dennis Noonan today, he says it will be about two months before he gets back to Alton, but when he does get back it will be to stay.

 

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HARRIS, GEORGE T.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 14, 1919

George T. Harris, one of the two Alton boys to see service in France as members of the tank corps, is home again, having been honorably discharged from the service. He was with a group of tank service men at St. Louis, assigned to work in connection with the Victory Loan drive, when he received notice of his discharge from the service. The other Alton soldier who saw service as a member of the tank service is Harrison Webb, who is now in a hospital in Chicago. Harris was in France 12 months, and was in the first tank battalion as an arm of the American service. He was in the 301st Heavy Tank Battalion, and saw service as a mechanic in the second Semme offensive and at Boullecourt. His unit was stationed in the British sector, about 300 miles north of the Argonne where the American light tanks were stationed. His united went into battle on September 29, and on November 11, the day the armistice was signed, had 20 tanks left of the 65 which had entered battle. On November 11, however, Harris said 20 tanks were lined up "waiting to jump at 'Jerry.'" Harris' unit was part of the tank detachment which pierced the Hindenburg line in the north. He described the Hindenburg line this morning and told of the German "pill boxes" of concrete, and the construction of German dugouts along the Hindenburg line. In some of them they found whisky, beer, and other evidences that the Germans intended to make a long stay of it. It was the tanks which paved the way for the infantry which followed, Harris said. The tanks were first in the attack and were followed by the infantry of the 27th division. He told of the German way of combating the tanks other than the anti-tank guns. Germans, he said, on seeing a tank approaching, would fall as though shot, and when the tank had passed them would catch up to it and climb on top. Through the ventilation holes they would shove their bayonets. A friend of Harris sustained a broken collarbone from a bayonet thrust while in a tank. Harris said the German tanks were inferior to those used by the British and Americans. He saw several captured German tanks, but never saw one in action. They looked like an "armored dry goods box," he said. The heavy tanks, Harris said, carry two, 3-pound guns, and a crew of 8 men. Each weighs 42 tons. Harris will leave this evening for Memphis, Tenn., where he will visit his mother. After a visit there he will return to Alton where he will continue to make his home.

 

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HASTINGS, J. B. (MAJOR)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 15, 1917

Maj. J. B. Hastings, until a few months ago a practicing physician in Alton, now surgeon of the 21st regiment of engineers at Camp Grant, Rockford, is scheduled to start for France very soon. Reports from Rockford indicate that the 21st engineers will not stay long in this country. Maj. Hastings has achieved the highest rank a doctor can get professionally in the service. The regiment in which he is serving is a purely volunteer affair, not a man having been drafted, and every man having been selected because of his adeptness in some needed line of work.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 16, 1919

Dr. J. B. Hastings, who has concluded a vacation which he found it necessary to take on his return from arduous duties overseas in the army, has resumed his practice of medicine in Alton. Dr. Hastings has taken Room 401 in the Commercial building. He gave up a large and growing practice when his country called for him, and going in as a Captain he came out as a Major. He made a great success in his army work and had much valuable experience.

 

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HEINTZ, LEO (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 22, 1919

Relatives and friends are in receipt of letters from Lieut. Leo Heintz stating that he has been released from service in Germany, and that he expected to be enroute home by the time the letters written early in July reached their destination. Lieut. Heintz was in the Quartermaster Department, having enlisted in the very early days of the war. He was among the first 100 men in the Quartermaster's Department, and was said to be among the very first Alton men to set foot on French soil during the early days of the war. Heintz was connected with the office of the Beall Bros. Shovel plant when he answered his country's call, and shortly after entered the service, resigning his excellent position. He entered as a private, but his faithful application to duty he advanced rapidly, and some time ago was raised to Lieutenant. He will conclude two years overseas on Thursday, July 24. He is the son of Mrs. Victor Heintz of State street.

 

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HEMPKEN, OLIVER

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 6, 1918

Mr. and Mrs. George Hempken were much surprised today to receive a Christmas box from their son, Oliver, who has been in France for the past seven months. The box contained beautiful gifts for every member of the family. He also sent a cigar lighter made from a German prisoner's belt buckle. It is the size of a large watch, and on it is inscribed "Gott Mit Uns"  [God with us].  Also the German crown. Hempken said the lighter was made by a wounded French soldier.

 

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HOEHN, JOHN

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 6, 1919

John Hoehn arrived home this morning on a ten-day furlough, at the expiration of which he will go to Camp Grant for a minor operation at the base hospital there, after which he will be discharged from the service. Hoehn, formerly assistant to Deputy Coroner William H. Bauer, was overseas for a year and saw much active service. He was in the battle in which Edward Kniery was killed. The death of Kniery, Hoehn today said, caused sorrow among his comrades, as he was one of the most popular men in his company. Asked if the Germans are good fighters, Hoehn said they fight well until at close quarters, when they quit. Hoehn looks in fine physical condition, weighing about 175 pounds.

 

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JOHNSTON, DOUGLAS

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving commission of Second Lieutenant of artillery.

 

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JOHNSTON, HARRY (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 1, 1919

Lieut. Harry Johnston, son of Mr. and Mrs. H. K. Johnston, is home from France. He was the only Alton man who came over on the ship he was traveling on, and was the only Alton man demobilized at the camp where he was sent for demobilization, at the time he received his discharge. He was in the first party of men sent to Camp Taylor, Ky., by the local Exemption Board in September 1917. He remained there a long time, was picked out for training for a commission, qualified all right, and was sent to France for service. He will likely resume his duties in the H. K. Johnston hardware store at once. He was delighted to be home again, and to meet his family and old friends. Like almost all the other Alton boys who have returned, he is in fine condition of health and says the experience in the army has done him much good physically.

 

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KNIERY, EDWARD A.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 9, 1918                         Soldier Reportedly Killed in Action
That Edward A. Kniery, Corporal in Co. I, 129th Infantry, had yielded his life on the battlefield was the information received by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. M. W. Kniery of Litchfield, Friday evening. He died October 11 on the field of battle, the parents were told in the War Department message, from wounds received in action in France. Corporal Kniery was among the Alton boys who were sent into service. He was drafted here and was one of the number of Mississippi Sand Co. employees who were called, nearly depleting the list of the most important men that company had. After going to Camp Taylor, he was transferred to Camp Logan. He will be the first gold star in the Mississippi Sand Co. list. Lieut. Joseph Aldous of the same company, and one of the early group to leave, was wounded, and his parents notified recently that he was in a hospital in England convalescing. Ed Kniery's family formerly lived at East Alton and he attended the Cathedral school in Alton. He was a member of Alton Council K. of C., and so far as known is the first of that council to give his life, at least he is the first of whom there is any information here.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 26, 1918                Kniery's Death Report Was False

Edward Kniery is alive and well, according to a letter received early this morning by Mrs. John Schonbeckler of George Street, from her brother, Thomas Mooney, who has been with Kniery since the boys left Alton. Immediately upon receipt of the letter, the Kniery family at Litchfield was communicated with and informed of the news in the letter received. Mooney wrote that "Ed Kniery received a pretty hard bump on October 10th, and that on the11th he was reported dead." Mooney wrote on the 18th and said the Kniery was alive and well, and was with him. Relatives of Kniery were anxiously awaiting a letter from Mooney, for they anticipated full particulars from him as to the death of Kniery. Kniery's death threw a cloak of gloom over the entire city of Alton, where he lived and worked for a number of years. The letter received this morning was merely a note, Mooney writing that he did not have any more paper. He said he had been in a position for two weeks which prevented him writing home. The note from Mooney took a great weight off the hearts of his sisters and friends in the city, for it had been weeks since a letter had been received.

 

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KRANZ, PAUL

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 25, 1919

Paul Kranz is home on a thirty day furlough, which he is spending at the home of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Kranz, 816 East Fourth street. Kranz was in the great war with the famous First Division. He went across with Pershing, fought with the First during the year, and returned with that famous unit, headed by the A. E. F. Commander-in-Chief. Kranz has an army record probably unparalleled by any other Alton man. He is now serving his 29th year as a soldier of Uncle Sam. He will remain in the service another year and nine months, and will then have completed 30 years as a soldier. Kranz enlisted when the Philippine trouble first arose, and has been in the service continuously since. He has been located at countless places and has been in many engagements. He is in every sense a veteran. But though seeing more than 20 years of service before the great war recently ended, it was in the great war that he rendered his greatest service. Attached to the famous First, "Pershing's Own," Kranz was in some of the war's greatest battles. He was in four great drives. He was wounded and gassed in the great war, but has recovered. At the conclusion of his furlough, Kranz will go to Camp Taylor where he will be stationed. He is 42 years old.

 

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KUNZ, GEORGE

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 30, 1917

George Kunz, a paper hanger and painter, living in the North Side, left last night for New York for the purpose of going from there to France, and join the French army, or Gen. Pershing's army - the last named preferably. Mr. Kunz is a German by birth, but he ran away from Germany when a mere youth to escape the exactions of that government upon citizens living in Alsace-Lorraine, former French territory. That was his home and the home of his parents and other relatives, and his heart has been with France all of the time. He is married, but his wife, it is said, has not been discouraging his ambition to cross the water and help lick Germany on his native soil, and it was said today that she, later, may follow him to France and do Red Cross nurse duty. Both are young yet, and his going at this time will not cause her any material suffering, the parting and the possibilities of tragedy that it holds being the principal causes of distress, naturally. Mr. Kuntz is about 35 years old, friends say, and the draft would not catch him. The volunteer way of getting into the fight will catch him, however, and his numerous friends are hoping that his ambition to bring liberty to his native land will be realized, and that he may return to Alton afterwards all together physically.

 

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LAMM, GEORGE B.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 28, 1916

In an official bulletin issued by headquarters, United States Marine Corps, Washington, appears the name of George B. Lamm, of this city, as having qualified as a marksman in that interesting branch of the Government service. George, who is a son of Elvis H. Lamm, 2120 Washington street, Alton, enlisted in the United States Marine Corps at its St. Louis, Mo. recruiting station on May 25, 1915, and is still serving with the expeditionary forces of marines landed in Hayti [sic] for the protection of American interests in that war-torn little isle. Considering the fact that Lamm is scarcely more than a recruit, his performance in gunnery is considered by Marine Corps officials as little less than marvelous, and they expect him to break many marksmanship records before his enlistment expires.

 

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LAMM, GIRARD AND JOSEPH

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 30, 1919

Word has been received of the safe arrival at Newport News, Va., of Joseph and Girard Lamm, who are members of the 138th Infantry. The boys enlisted together, and after a stay in this country were sent overseas together. They were together all the time while overseas, except for a short period when one of the boys was ill. Both boys saw much fighting and for a long period no word was received from them, and the parents were very much worried. Afterwards, letters relieved their anxiety. The boys are sons of Mr. and Mrs. Elvis Lamm of this city.

 

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LARRISON, LEN

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 25, 1917

Dick Sparks has returned from Camp Taylor where he spent a few days, and he is filled with enthusiasm in his report of life in the camp. He found the Alton boys doing well, and all of them very much attached to their commanding officers. He found the officers kindly, considerate, and very effective in enlisting the best there is in the men. There, for instance, is Len Larrison, now the hero of Camp Taylor. He is just a sample of what Alton boys do. When they go in they go in the limit. Larrison set about training as a fighter, and before he got through he had whipped every other fighter in camp, and was put up against the only other championship aspirant there on Wednesday, and he laid him out in the third round. That made Larrison the hero, and every Alton boy was proud to say that he came from the same town as the champion. Len didn't bear a mark after the fight. Capt. Rollie Cook says that the boys need talking machine records and new magazines. They are enjoying the copies of the Telegraph going to them every day, and they also enjoy any other reading matter. Capt. Cook sends his heartfelt thanks to Alton people for their interest in the boys. He says it is unnecessary to send "comfort kits" to the boys, as a supply is on hand ready for distribution. Piano player rolls and current magazines are needed. Two magazines most prized are the Literary Digest and Life. Mr. Sparks says that anyone who visits Camp Taylor will come back impressed that there is no need for worrying about the Alton boys, that they are being well cared for and are happy and in good hands.

 

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LEVIS, C. PARKER

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 9, 1917

C. Parker Levis, son of Charles Levis, was among those who received a commission as captain at Fort Benjamin Harrison. His name was among those given out in Washington D. C. this morning as having received a commission as captain. Alton relatives were elated when they were informed that he had been appointed to the office, which is among the highest that can be given. Parker Levis has had considerable military training, being a graduate of Culver. He left a very responsible position at the Illinois Glass Co. to accept the position in the army, and do his bit for his country.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

The word that Parker Levis will be a Captain in the U. S. Army, which arrived in Alton several days ago from Fort Benjamin Harrison, was followed today by the information that commission had been given to a number of the Alton boys at Fort Sheridan. The Alton boys were entitled to commissions as first and second lieutenants as the result of the work they did at Fort Sheridan during the past three months.

 

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LEVIS, WILLIAM

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 13, 1918

"Leaving New York today. Home Saturday afternoon," was flashed across the wire from New York this morning by Regimental Officer William Levis to his wife and his father. Levis left New York at 9:10 o'clock this morning, and will arrive in St. Louis at 1:35 o'clock this afternoon. He will be met there by his relatives, and will make the trip to Alton by auto. Levis has three days to spend at home, and then he will be assigned for service in the United States. Where he will go is not known. The first cablegram from him said that he had been assigned to help train men in this country. He is the first Alton man to return from service on the firing line in France. He has had numerous experiences and some narrow escapes. Among other was the time he received his wound. The fighting was so intense in his vicinity that almost everyone of the men about him was killed. When the government was calling for men for the second officers' training camp, Levis left his wife and a responsible position at the Illinois Glass Co. to serve his country. He was given a commission as a Lieutenant at Fort Sheridan, and called for France January 3, 1918. After three months of intensive training, he was sent to the front. From May 30 until August 15 he was never out of the range of the enemies guns. He was quickly promoted to Battalion Gas Officer. In July he received a promotion to Regimental Intelligence Officer. The fact that he has been out of the firing line less than a month makes it certain that he will have some interesting experiences to tell when he arrives home. He took an active part in the fighting at Chauteau-Thierry when the Allies made their recent advance there.

 

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MALFATTI, WEDO

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 1, 1919

Wedo Malfatti, son of Mr. and Mrs. Victor Malfatti, well known Italians of the east end of the city, came home from France last night after being nine months in the war zone, and having been in the frontlines several times. Malfatti, when he was sent out, was in a contingent of three men on a special call. His companions were named Frey and Fox. Malfatti says that he was with both of the men until he got into France, when he went into the medical department. He says he saw them often and that he knows both were killed in action. The names of the two men have not before been reported as casualties from the Alton district. Malfatti says that he knows that they were killed, that when he missed them he made inquiry and was told that both had died in the hospitals after having been brought in wounded. The records of the Exemption Board are not here to locate just who the two men are, but it is certain that two men of this name accompanied Malfatti when he went out January 15-18.

 

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MAXFIELD, J. B. (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 28, 1918

George H. Smiley & Co. Agency have received a letter from Lieut. J. B. Maxfield, in which he says he will be home on Sunday, December 29, for a short furlough. He also stated that the Officer-Material School at Hampton Roads, of which he is an executive officer, is scheduled to close on April 16, and he hopes to return to Alton soon after that date to take up the active management of his business. Mrs. Maxfield will not accompany her husband, being at Mobile, Ala., with her mother. Lieut. Maxfield was one of the first Alton business men to give up his business interests and go into the service of his country. Being commander of the local division of the Illinois Naval Reserves, he was called out when that division was summoned to duty, and he has been on duty in the navy ever since. He was the first man in Alton commissioned in either army or navy. The members of the naval reserves were the first considerable body of men, and their officer all have seen much very active duty.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 1, 1919

Lieut. J. B. Maxfield, who for the past two years has been on active duty in the United States Navy, and was the first Alton man to gain a commission in the service of the United States, will be home tomorrow evening, and expects to stay here. He will resume charge of the business, which when war called him away two years ago, he turned over to his former employer and former owner of the business, G. H. Smiley. The former owner of the business, though in retirement, came back from the retired life to do his part for his country by letting Lieut. Maxfield go into the service. It was a case of Mr. Smiley doing his bit too during the war, and he has done it well, holding together the business which Lieut. Maxfield was called upon to relinquish. Mr. Smiley is looking forward with pleasant anticipations to a resumption of his own vacation, which was interrupted two years ago when duty called.

 

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McDERMOTT, GLEN

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 17, 1919

Mr. and Mrs. Harry McDermott of College avenue in Upper Alton were greatly surprised Sunday morning when their son, Glen, walked in. The young man was with the United States fighting marines, and the parents did not know he had even started across the water from France. The fact that the young man was looking fine and was wearing his two legs in good shape was a great relief to the parents. He was shot in the leg last July and had been in a hospital from that time up to the time he left home, and it was always a question whether he had really lost a leg or not. It was stated here last summer that the boy had lost a leg, and this was published as a fact in one of the Alton papers. Glen McDermott enlisted with the marines in December 1917. He was sent to France last April and had been over there almost a year. His ship, the U. S. Nonesemond, arrived last Tuesday with a load of wounded soldiers, and they were sent to the naval base hospital at Portsmouth, Virginia. Mr. McDermott immediately asked for a furlough and was given thirty days and sent home. He arrived Sunday, unexpected by anyone. His collarbone was broken last May by his being thrown off a big truck. The truck was carrying a load of mattresses which were piled high up in the air, and the driver rounded a curve at a high rate of speed and struck a ditch, which stopped the machine suddenly. The boy was riding on top of the mattresses with some other soldiers and all were thrown off. In July he was shot through the leg by a machine gun bullet, and he had been in the hospital ever since until he was sent home. He will be sent back to the naval base hospital at Portsmouth for further treatment when his furlough expires.

 

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McGINNIS, JOHN F.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper of receiving commission of Second Lieutenant in Infantry.

 

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MEGOWEN, ARCH D.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 23, 1918

Ensign Arch Megowen will arrive home tomorrow from Pelham Bay, New York, where he is stationed, to spend a ten-day furlough with his parents. Ensign Megowen is just barely 21 years of age, and his appointment is a great honor to a man of his years. He enlisted last April, being sent to Great Lakes, and from there was sent East, being one of the small number chosen out of 600 men. His splendid work in the East caused him to be promoted rapidly, and to be given the title of Ensign. Ensign Megowen is the third of his family to be in the service, the men being the sons of Mr. and Mrs. L. O. Megowen of Main street. Captain L. E. Megowen, who received his commission at Fort Sheridan, is stationed at Leon Springs, Tex., and another son, J. L. Megowen, is organization secretary for the Seventh District of Illinois for the Federal Reserve Work.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 20, 1919

Arch D. Megowen, son of Mr. and Mrs. L. O. Megowen of Upper Alton, has been commissioned a junior lieutenant in the navy. This information came in a letter received by the parents today from Megowen, who landed in America on May 17th from a cruise of four months. The date was Megowen's 23rd birthday anniversary, and upon his arrival he found the commission of junior lieutenant in the navy awaiting him. He writes his parents that it was a very acceptable birthday present. Megowen was an ensign in the navy. As such, he was assigned to the steamer Mount Shasta, which took a cargo of supplies and food stuffs to Triestte, Austria. The Mount Shasta sailed from Norfolk, Va. the latter part of January, and it has taken her months to complete the Mediterranean trip. Megowen writes that he expects to be home in a few days for a short stay.

 

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MEGOWEN, ROBERT (CAPTAIN)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 3, 1919

Capt. Robert Megowen has arrived in the United States and will be home in a short time. Capt. Megowen belongs to a prominent Upper Alton family, and his relatives have been looking for his arrival for some time. He has been serving in France.

 

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MEYER, JOHN

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 19, 1919

John Meyer, the State street grocer, has received a letter from his son, Lieutenant Harold Meyer, an airplane commander in France, in which the young man said he was about to embark for the United States. He expects to get his discharge and arrive home to stay the last of this month or very early next month. Harold has two enemy planes to his credit, and he would have gotten more of them if the armistice had not been signed when it was. He is a daring aviator, and as he went to Europe for the purpose of putting Hun airplanes out of commission, he was always anxious to be out after them. He is one of the long members of the White Hussar band, and the boys of that aggregation will be among those who will welcome him home heartily. He has made a fine record as an aviator and has surely done his share in winning the war.

 

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MILLER, FRANK (SERGEANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 1, 1919

Gus Miller yesterday received a telegram from his son, Sergeant Frank Miller from Camp Meritt, N. J., in which the young man says he has been honorably discharged and will be home in a few days. He was one of the President's guards during the latter's stay in Paris, and he came over on the George Washington, the boat that brought Mr. Wilson back.

 

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MORGAN, JAMES N.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving a commission in Quartermaster Department of Second Lieutenant.

 

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NORCUM, ALFRED J.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 1, 1918

Alfred J. Norcum, formerly connected with the Western Cartridge Co., left Alton at 10 o'clock last evening on the first lap of his trip to France. He expects to join the Swope party and go at once to Paris, where he will take an active part in the Red Cross work. Mr. Norcum is not only donating his services to the Red Cross, but he is paying all of his own expenses as well.

 

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PAUL, HERBERT A.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 2, 1918

Herbert A. Paul arrived home last night from Indianapolis, where he has been visiting his sister on his way back from Europe. He was enlisted in the Y.M.C.A. war work, and was sent to England, where he became very ill with influenza and pneumonia developed. He was decided to be unfit for overseas duty as the result of the illness, and was sent back to America. It is probably he will be kept here at least until he fully regains his health and strength, and then he may be used in some other place by the Y.M.C.A.  He has not been released from service.

 

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REYNOLDS, PETER

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 1, 1919

Peter Reynolds, who was with an artillery unit in France, arrived home today, having been discharged from the service. Reynolds received his discharge from Camp Grant.

 

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RICHARDSON, WILLIAM

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 26, 1919

A romance of war is the romance of William Richardson - a romance of war, yet one which started and will culminate far from the battlefield. Richardson will not be united in wedlock to his bride with the "din of battle" just over the hill, but his marriage will be the culmination of a beautiful romance. During the war against Germany, Richardson was an unseen hero. He left Alton quietly, and there were no brass bands to meet him. After leaving Alton he was placed in the gas and flame department of the army. It was in this department that Ty Cobb, George Sisler, Branch Rickey and other baseball stars won commissions. But Richardson did not win a commission. He was assigned to a laboratory just out of Baltimore. Here he experimented on the gasses to be used at the front. The most deadly of poisonous gasses were made there, and it was the duty of Richardson to experiment with the gasses. Though thousands of miles from the battlefields of France, Belgium and Italy, Richardson was gassed three times in the service of his country, and three times he was confined to the camp hospital near Baltimore. When he was first ordered to the hospital, a young woman from Baltimore brought him good things to eat and happy smiles. When he again was confined to the hospital the young lady called on Richardson. The third time he was confined the Baltimore young woman continued her visits, bringing sweets to the soldier. Since his return to Alton and recovery from the effects of gas, Richardson has been employed at the Standard Oil Co. He departed early this week to claim his bride, the visitor at the hospital, and is expected to return in two weeks. This is the romance of William Richardson, one of the unseen heroes of the war whose praises are yet to be sung.

 

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RINTOUL, MORRIS
Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 16, 1919
The peace terms which have been submitted to Germany by the allied nations, and which have been characterized as "murderous" by German leaders, are not too severe in the opinion of many soldiers of the American army who faced Hun soldiers on the battlefields of France. Morris Rintoul, formerly a student of the Alton High School, who enlisted with the 138th (St. Louis) Infantry, and was assigned to the machine gun company of the regiment, in reply to a question this morning said in his opinion the terms submitted to Germany are "not a bit too strong." While he said he could not speak for all the American soldiers, Rintoul said he believes it is the opinion of the average soldier who fought the Germans that the terms are not too severe. "Anyone who fought against the Germans hates them," Rintoul said. "What would they have done to us if they had won?" The terms which Germany, judging by what was published as her peace terms, would have imposed on the allies, would have been much more severe, Rintoul declared. Rintoul was overseas a year and was in the service for nearly two years. He fought in all the battles of the 138th, and escaped without being wounded. He fought in the Argonne Forest, and described the fighting there as "fierce." His division, Rintoul said, fought in a patch of the forest which was partly cleared. In the interior of the forest the sun never appeared in many places, so dense are the trees, he said. Rintoul opposed the Prussian Guard, the pride of Germany, and the former Kaiser. Rintoul said they were good fighters, and anything but "yellow." They were mostly men of large stature and quite imposing in their field gray uniforms, he said.

 

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RODGERS, CLARK

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving commission of Second Lieutenant in Infantry.

 

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SCHNEEBERG, WILL

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 1, 1919

Will Schneeberg, former North Side druggist who has been in the medical detachment of the army for several months, and who has been located for some time recently in Philadelphia, has been discharged, according to a letter received from him by Miss Helen Cobeck. He says he will be in Alton in a short time, or as soon as possible.

 

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SCOTT, PAUL

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 16, 1918

Lieutenant Paul Scott of the 17th Regiment of Field Artillery arrived in Alton Sunday from France. He will leave this evening for Fort Sill where he will be an instructor in the firing school. Scott came to Alton directly from France, after having spent six months on the firing line. He was a graduate from the first officers' training camp, and went to France early in the year. He has been on four different parts of the firing line, and took part in some of the most important of the recent fighting. Scott was at Chateau Thierry when the Germans attempted their big drive towards Paris. Later, he took an active part in the advance upon Soissons by the Americans and the French. He cannot speak too highly of the American soldier at the front. "They are the best in the war," he said today. "The Allies paid us little attention when we went to France, but now they respect the fighting ability of the Americans. I have seen American soldiers remain on duty for thirty days at a stretch. They have put the pep into the Allied armies. They go on and on when there seems to be no chance of them going farther. Let me tell you that the Prussian Guard that attacked at Chateau Thierry in the German drive towards Paris was the pick of the German army. The Americans held them off and then beat them back."  Scott was stationed ahead of the artillery during the advance upon Soissons, as it was his duty to watch the battle and report back over the telephone where the artillery could do the most damage. "Before the advance upon Soissons," he said, "everything was as still as possibly could be. Then in a second, five hundred guns went off. The French and Americans climbed out of their trenches and went after the Germans. Thirty-five minutes after the first guns were fired the prisoners were beginning to come in. We had taken the Germans unaware. The French tanks and the French cavalry played an important part in the first advance. The tanks ran hither and thither, spitting out their bullets. The cavalry men dressed in blue uniforms with white collars and cuffs and long lances formed a pretty array. The Germans made their defense by sending in swarms of airplanes that flew low everywhere, dropping bombs and shooting their machines guns. In some instances, our men took the artillery of the Germans and turned their own guns on them as they retreated. Sometimes the artillery men would pull out a fuse so the shell would not explode, in order that the Germans might know we were shelling him with their own ammunition. Then we would get the order to advance. The horses were quickly hitched to the guns and we would advance as soon as possible. The first day we moved up five miles and the second day three miles." Lieut. Scott tells the story of a little stretcher bearer who was in the first day's fighting at Soissons. "The lad was carrying in a wounded man, when he was slightly wounded himself and was forced to put down the stretcher. Just then a German officer, a prisoner, came along. The stretcher bearer told the officer to take his place. In broken French the officer told that he was an officer and therefore did not have to do that kind of work. 'You the demoted,' the lad replied, stripping the insignias from his shoulders and arms. Then the officer obeyed and carried the stretcher for the rest of the day." Scott brought home with him some German artillery flags taken at Soissons. Mrs. Scott accompanied her husband to Alton. She will go to Fort Sill with him this evening. While in Alton they were the guests of Lieut. Scott's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Paul Scott.

 

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SPARKS, DAVID R.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 7, 1917

David Sparks, son of C. F. Sparks, who has volunteered his services to the war department, will leave Monday for Washington. He is hopeful of being assigned to some post in the army in the capacity of an officer. He is a graduate of Western Military Academy, and is one of the many of the alumni of that school who are ready and anxious to get into the service and help drill the army that is to be formed. During his stay in Washington, he will be with Mr. and Mrs. H. B. Sparks. He has been attending Washington University in St. Louis, but decided to discontinue his studies forthwith. He is a grandson of Capt. D. R. Sparks, who served through the Mexican and Civil Wars.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 16, 1917

A cablegram came late yesterday afternoon to the Sparks Milling Co., telling of the arrival of David Sparks at Bordeaux [France]. He sailed just ten days before the receipt of the cablegram telling of his arrival, having passed safely through the dangerous waters in the vicinity of the coast of France. The ship on which he sailed was a new one, and was speedy, but the trip was longer than usual because of circuitous routes being taken to throw the submarine sentinels off the track and to give the ship better chance of making the trip in safety. On the ship with the Alton lad were about twenty other young men, going as ambulance drivers for the Red Cross.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 8, 1917

There was a record-breaking crowd at the noonday luncheon today to hear the talk by David Sparks, an Alton boy, on the subject of his experiences while serving as an ambulance driver with the French army, during the fighting in the Verdun sector when the French made their last great drive. The interest that Alton has in the war in Europe was shown by the demand for accommodations at the noonday luncheon. Inquiries made early in the day indicated that the hotel would have a job on its hands taking care of those who wished to hear the story of his experiences from the lips of an Alton boy who had faced heavy gunfire and had come through many dangerous experiences unscathed. The speaker had been at Carlinville the night before, addressing a gathering. Almost 200 persons, the greatest ever attending one of the luncheons, heard his splendid talk. When Lieut. Sparks was introduced, his audience rose with him and the waving of handkerchiefs by the many ladies present, and the handclapping of the men, caused him to remark that such a demonstration in his own home city made coming home and going away worthwhile. Lieut. Sparks has spent all of his time while in France as an ambulance driver in the Verdun sector, and he gave a graphic description of the terrible scenes that one sees on all sides all the time. He told of how the gunfire is mostly at night, and how in the gray dawn he saw the dead soldiers being lifted into carts, and he himself carried away the injured, and how the terrible scene happens night after night, and week after week, and month after month. He told that the suffering is seen on every side until one becomes hardened to it, and blood and carnage no longer unnerves one. Lieut. Sparks gave an excellent description of the Verdun front. He told of the topography of the land, of "No Man's Land," and gave a good description of how the ammunition and food supplies are rushed to the trenches in the night, and how the enemy tries to shell and destroy all the attempt to travel the rough road to the actual trenches. Working in the darkness with no lights, picking one's way through ground, every foot of which is torn by exploding shells, the ambulance driver never knows when a shell will drop on his machine and blow machine and himself into eternity. Lieut. Sparks tells his story graphically. He speaks slow and deliberately, and you get every word. It's a terrible story from the lips of a man who has spent months right in the thick of the hottest sector, and where the greatest number of men have been killed on both sides, or any of the war sectors in any country. Lieut. Sparks ends his talk with an appeal to give aid to the Y. M. C. A., and tells how the bright spot a soldier finds in this hell of shell-fire and blood and carnage is the Y. M. C. A., but, where he takes a smoke, reads a newspaper, writes letters, gets a moment of peace, and relaxes. And he ended with telling the men and women that the American boys are there now, and that they will find this Y. M. C. A. the greatest boon of anything on the battlefront, and asks all to contribute liberally. Lieut. Sparks exhibits his gas mask, his helmet, also a German helmet, which for "sentimental reasons" he states he does not place on his head; also a number of other things used by a soldier or ambulance driver in the thick of the fire. The talk was one of the most interesting the Board of Trade members and their friends have ever listened to. It gave them first hand information from the place where the big scrap is the hottest.

 

[NOTE: David R. Sparks was the son of Charles Fletcher Sparks, and grandson of Captain David R. Sparks who founded the Sparks Milling Company in Alton. He lived at 609 Summit Street in Alton. In 1941 David Sparks almost lost his life in a serious auto accident. However he did recover. Sparks died in June 1968 in New Hampshire, at age 70.]

 

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STAMPER, FRANK

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 18, 1918

Alton friends received word today that Ensign Frank Stamper of Upper Alton has been rescued from a ship which was torpedoed and sunk while he was on his way back from a trip to South America. The news came in a telegram from the Navy Department to Stamper's wife, Mrs. Lucile Wightman Stamper, who at present is in Greenville, Ill., where she is teaching school. The telegram reads: "We are happy to inform you that your husband, Ensign Frank Stamper, with a few others, was saved when the boat was torpedoed by a submarine as it was returning from South America." Ensign Stamper sailed for South America on July 1. Mrs. Stamper received word September 1 that the boat on which her husband sailed has reached South America safely, and that it would start soon on the return voyage. No further news was received from Stamper until the telegram announcing his safe rescue. The name of the boat is not known, neither has the date that it was torpedoed been given out.

 

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STOEHR, FREDERICK G.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving a commission in the Quartermaster Department of Second Lieutenant.

 

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STOWELL, FRANK C.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving commission in the Quartermaster Department for Second Lieutenant.

 

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TAYLOR, LUCIEN

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving commission of Second Lieutenant in Infantry.

 

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TIPTON, WARREN A. (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, February 14, 1919

First Lieutenant Warren A. Tipton of Battery E, 124th Field Artillery, who broke his arm when it became caught in German Barbed wire on Friday, September 13, during the St. Mihiel attack, is home. He arrived in America last Friday and is home on a fourteen day leave. When his leave is up, Lieut. Tipton will be stationed either at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, or Camp Meade, Md.  He has a regular army commission and will probably be in the service until July. Lieut. Tipton enlisted in the cavalry on April 21, 1917, fifteen days after the declaration of war, while a student at the University of Illinois at Champaign. From a private in the cavalry he became a corporal, and when later, the cavalry was merged with the artillery, he was appointed a sergeant of artillery. On January 18, 1918, he was recommended for a commission as second lieutenant and successfully passed his examinations. On May 2 of the same year, at Ft. Sill, Okla., he was promoted to first lieutenant. His detachment set sail for France on May 2. Lieut. Tipton was in the St. Mihiel attack for two weeks. On the night of Friday, September 13, while running through a trench to find the commander of his battery, his arm became caught on German barbed wire, one of the large barbs piercing his arm, tearing loose the ligament and breaking it just at the elbow. After being confined for some time to a hospital, Lieut. Tipton was transferred from the artillery to the trench warfare branch of the Ordnance. Lieut. Tipton seemed unwilling to speak of his experiences on the other side. He said the Germans are great fighters. Their morale was broken by the Americans, Lieut. Tipton said. The Germans knew that 300,000 American troops monthly were arriving in France, and believed them to be finished soldiers, ready to enter the firing line. Knowing they could not win with this great force from over the sea, getting into the fray with the might of a free nation, they soon lost heart. Lieut. Tipton was in Paris twice during the night air raids. During the first raid he took cover with the Parisians, but in the second stayed out that he might see what it looked like. Lieut. Tipton has a German iron cross, which is the property of Lieut. Courtney Dickerson of Brighton. The Alton officer borrowed the cross from Dickerson while at Metz, and Dickerson was moved before the cross could be returned. He has also several German service insignias beside an aerial bomb, his helmet and other trophies of war. Lieut. Tipton, with the exception of his left arm, which is slightly stiff, is in the best of health, weighing more than 180 pounds. He said he was "mighty glad" to get back home, but would not have missed the experience gained in France for anything.

 

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TWITCHELL, JAMES E.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 25, 1919

Sergeant James Twitchell arrived in Alton this morning from France by way of a mustering out camp in this country. He is well and very much pleased to be back in Illinois and Alton. He left here in January 1918, and went to France shortly after that. He went to the front in France in July, and remained in the front until the armistice was signed, November 11. He escaped serious gassing and all wounds, in some miraculous manner, and after the signing of the armistice, went to Germany with the army of occupation. He has seen all of the old countries he ever wishes to see.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 1, 1919

Sergeant James E. Twitchell, who returned from overseas duty recently, brought back with him a box filled with souvenirs, and among these are many silver and brass buttons he cut from the uniforms of what he calls "Good Germans." He tells of having lived four months while with the army of occupation in Germany, with a German family who became greatly attached to him and who begged him not to go away. A little girl of the family gave him a gold ring and placed it on his little finger where it still is. He brought with him a message from a boy friend who was killed in one of the last battles of the war. The mother lives in St. Louis, and Mr. Twitchell went down yesterday and delivered the message. A gold star was in the window of the home, and he comforted the mother with the story he told of the heroism of her son and of the willingness to die for humanity and his country if necessary. Mr. Twitchell and his father, S. E. Twitchell, who just returned from the northwest, went to Hardin this morning to spend a few days visiting around. They will be back Thursday and shortly after July 4th S. E. Twitchell will leave for Vero, Florida, where he has large property interests.

 

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WEBB, HARRISON

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 26, 1918

Capt. and Mrs. E. H. Webb have received word that the address of their son, Harrison Webb, is now American Expeditionary Forces in France. The young man is enlisted in the tank service.

 

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WEIENS, JOHN

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 31, 1918

Fort Russell township has the case of a fat man who is too fleshy to fight, and he will be sent into some other form of government service. He is ready to fight and willing, but on account of the physical tests required, he cannot be taken into the regular army. The fat man is John Weiens, a patriotic youth of 25 who lives on a farm in Fort Russell township near Bethalto. He registered with the Edwardsville board but failed to pass the physical examination on account of having a surplus of flesh, weighing over 200 pounds. He has been given a special line of service, and will leave tonight for Syracuse, N. Y.

 

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WOHLERT, WILLIAM H.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 13, 1919

William H. Wohlert, wounded and gassed while going over the top with the 37th Division in the region of Verdun in France, and now back at his peace-time job, this morning described some of his experiences. Wohlert left Alton April 29 last, and went to Camp Dix, N. J., and was some weeks later transferred to the 37th. He sailed for France on June 22, and after two weeks in a rest camp, entered the front line trenches in the Lorraine sector on July 17. Wohlert saw active service in the Lorraine sector from July 27 until September 20, when he was transferred to the Verdun vicinity in the Argonne region. He arrived in the new ___ or about 8 o'clock at night, and after a few hours went into battle. At 11 o'clock the same night the Allied barrage fire started, and at 5 o'clock in the morning Wohlert's division went over the top. The battle lasted three days. Wohlert went over three times, and at noon of the third day, September 29, received a machine gun bullet wound in the foot. He was sent to the first aid station, and shortly re-entered the fighting. At 1:30, an hour and a half after being wounded, he was gassed and taken to a hospital. His division, Wohlert said, on the first day of the battle in which he was wounded, took 1,100 prisoners, and took a greater number on the second day. Wohlert described the pain from gas as "awful." He was in the hospital for some time, and for a week and a half was blind. He has fully recovered his eyesight, except that strong sunlight now causes him pain. In describing the Allied barrage fire in the first day of the Argonne battle, Wohlert said that 15,000 French 75s, 5,000 six-inch and 2,000 shells of larger calibre were used in the barrage on the first day. On the second day, with the shell supply at most exhausted, tanks were used for the attack. In the Lorraine sector Wohlert was in many raiding parties and patrols. On one day in July his patrol was in a 45-minute battle with a German party, and a French lieutenant and a corporal were killed. In a similar battle on the next night, two privates were killed. In both these Wohlert escaped uninjured. Many of the people in Lorraine were pro-German, Wohlert said. Every time a raid was planned by the Americans, the Germans had advanced information. Many patrols, planned with the greatest of secrecy, were known of by the Germans, and the Americans met parties far greater in number. In a small stream two bottles were caught by a string stretched by the Americans, and in each was a note betraying military secrets. In an old barn near one village a complete wireless outfit was discovered. It was constructed with old German ammunition. In the fighting in the Argonne sector, Wohlert's division faced the Prussian guards, Germany's greatest fighters. Wohlert said today they are great fighters. In this section they had practically no infantry. Everything, he said, was machine guns. In every bit of shelter of concealment was a machine gun. After an advance, machine guns could be seen everywhere. Their trenches were filled up and many of them destroyed by the American fire. Wohlert talked to a German lieutenant who admitted at the time that Germany was beaten, but he expected them to hold on until April. Wohlert also said the French expected the war's end in April. He visited some German dugout after their capture. Some of them were made of concrete and had electric lights, and were ___ feet deep. Some were furnished in elaborate style. Wohlert said he saw two German women in uniform. After their capture by the Allied troops, they took off their helmets to surrender and their long hair showed them to be women. They were about middle-aged, Wohlert said, but declared he did not have time to notice if they were good looking.....[rest of story is unreadable].

 

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WOOD, WALTER (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 11, 1917

Reported in newspaper as receiving commission for First Lieutenant in Infantry.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 19, 1917

A letter written from Camp Grant by an Alton commissioned officer in the army, refers in a highly complimentary way, giving at the same time just credit to Lieut. Walter Wood, formerly of Alton. He recalls the star part that Wood played in the recent football game between teams representing Camp Grant and Camp Curtis, and Wood was the hero of the game in which many stars participated. "He is now," the writer continued, "the head instructor in the automatic rifle section of the school of arms at Camp Grant, and he is valued highly here by his superiors." The writer concludes that though his friends in Alton may think that they know Lieut. Wood well, they did not know him at all, at least they did not understand what he had in him. When Wood was in Alton he was an instructor in Alton High School. "Punk" Wood, as he was known, was exceedingly popular here. It is recalled that when Harry Jarrett launched the ill-starred Three-Eye League team in Alton, he declined to make a place for Wood at first, and that almost caused an insurrection in Alton against the team. Finally room was made for the popular young ballplayer, but it was too late. Just about that time the call was issued for men to go to training camps, Wood applied, and after he had started out with the Three-Eyed League team on its trip, he was ordered to training camp. Wood chose the military as a calling, dropped baseball, and those who know him well believe that he will climb up much higher before he is through with his winning his way in the army, and that he will be a credit to himself and his family. Wood is a native of Bethalto, and his mother still lives there and is very proud of her son.

 

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YOUNGBLOOD, JOSEPH

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 1, 1918

Joseph Youngblood, one of Alton's early enlisting soldier boys, is at home on his first furlough, visiting his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Tuller, at 1707 Curdie avenue. Joe has only seven days off and must again return to camp next Saturday. He left here last July and this is his first visit home. He is a member of Company K, 138th U. S. Infantry, stationed at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. He told a reported of the Telegraph that there were about 60,000 men stationed at his cantonment. Oklahoma is a dry state, and while there is an occasional bootlegger, it is almost impossible for a soldier to get any strong drink. In all the months he was at Fort Sill, Youngblood says he never saw a drunken soldier. The bootleggers run a double chance in selling to a man in uniform, since this is not only an offense against the State law, but is very apt also to involve the offender with Uncle Sam. As far as he could observe, there was little trouble in camp as a consequence of any violations of the military rule against soldiers' drinking. The boys out there are entirely away from the lure of the open saloons, and consequently most of them forget there is such a thing as booze on earth. In contrast to reports coming from cantonments in close proximity of open saloons, conditions at Fort Sill prove the efficacy of prohibition in a concededly sober soldiery.

 

ZERWEKH, PAUL (LIEUTENANT)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 26, 1918

Lieut. Paul Zerwekh, of the aviation section, will be the first soldier candidate to announce for office. He is at present city attorney of Alton, but he has been represented in that job by Charles McHenry, who took the office temporarily when the city attorney went away to training camp to learn to become an aviator. Lieut. Zerwekh, who is home on a furlough, said that he has decided to become a candidate for re-election to office, and will make his formal announcement in a few days. He expects to go back to camp soon, and to remain there until he is discharged from service. There will probably be many candidates for office in the spring and naturally enough there is much interest in the number of soldier candidates who will come out. Lieut. Zerwekh plans, when he is discharged, to return to Alton and take up the practice of law. He was just starting in his practice when he was called into the service. He will probably be associated in his practice with Charles McHenry, his friend and the man who has held down his job for him while Lieut. Zerwekh was training for the aviation work.

 

 

 

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