Category: marines

‘In Germany, the kids, or “hunlets” as the dou…

Germany, the kids, or “hunlets” as the doughboys called them, used to flock around
us with souvenirs to swap for tobacco, chocolate, or soap. If a field kitchen paused for business by the roadside, if a car
halted at a city curb, the children swarmed around
it like bees around a honey-pot, and always with souvenirs to swap.’

American soldier in Germany – The Command is Forward: Tales of the A. E. F.
battlefields as they appeared in The Stars and Stripes
– Photo: WW1 official USMC photograh, showing a US soldier offering cigarettes to a boy, somewhere in France of
Germany – Archives Branch, Marine Corps
History Division


                                                                A memorable day

“The Marines carried
the Christmas spirit to France. They showed more
than 300 kiddies living in Breuvannes what a real old-fashioned
American Christmas is. Three huge Christmas
trees were obtained and erected, one in each of the
towns where the Marines were
billeted. With the Regimental Band playing Christmas
music, and the trees
beautifully trimmed, the gifts were distributed
among the children by Regimental Interpreter and their school teachers. What a memorable day!”

WW1 US Marines in Breuvannes, in the Marne, France – The
Marine Corps Gazette, Volume 5 – Photo: WW1
US Marines bringing the Christmas spirit to Breuvannes. From the awesome
Facebook page “100ans en Haute Marne” and twitter account “100ans US Haute

                           “I’m a real, …

a real, live, honest-to-goodness Marine!“

‘Dear Bill,

I’ve got the greatest news! You’ll never guess!

Now, listen and try to get this. I know it’ll be hard at
first, but it’ll grow on you after a while. Are you ready? Well, then, — I’m a lady
leatherneck; I’m a real, live, honest-to-goodness Marine! The process was painful
I admit, and lasted for thirty-six hours, but I survived it all right. Don’t be
surprised if you see me mentioned for a Croix de Guerre or something. They’ve
done everything to me except punch my name out on my chest. That’s coming soon,
I guess. I always knew that the Marines would realize the necessity of women
some day, so I was laying low and waiting. Well, when I heard they had at last
hung out a sign at the recruiting station — ‘Women wanted for the United States
Marine Corps’ — I was ready!’

August 13, 1918 – Women officially enlist in the
United States Marine Corps for the first time – American lady’s letter to her boyfriend – Women Marines in World War 1 – Photos: US
National Archives     

French marines (Fusiliers Marins) in a Belgian…

French marines (Fusiliers Marins) in a Belgian town, 1914.

“Friday july 26 1918 – Hiked to Chateau-…

“Friday july 26 1918 – Hiked to Chateau-Thierry this morning. Reached there at noon. Passed through Vaux and there’s not a wall standing. I
saw my first dead German soldier there. He was about five days dead then.
Chateau-Thierry was pretty badly shot up, but altogether got out of it
pretty lucky. Saw “beaucoup” Bosche material here; guns, ammunition,
etc. Hiked to Belleau Woods this afternoon and are now camping on a spot that the Marines fought so hard

On the Western
Front with the Rainbow Division: A World War I Diary
– Summer 1918, The Rainbow
division marching through France – Missouri Over There

“Wow, it is hot — both weather and shells comi…

“Wow, it is hot — both weather and shells coming over, the Hun must have their
dates mixed and are trying to celebrate the 4th of July but we will set them
right at midnight tonight when we start our third drive.

The Marines are doing all
the good work here but are paying dearly for it, and they not having any ambulances
we are called on to do the work. Some large ambulances which came here to help
out are too big to do the work but the little old Fords sneak up
close to the lines, always on the go and for good work! General Pershing commanded
us for our excellent work.”

July 1918, American ambulance driver “somewhere in France”, probably in the Chateau
Thierry sector
. Pennsylvanian Voices of the Great War – Photo: July 6th
1918, Chateau-thierry sector – American ambulance drivers carrying a wounded soldier
from a first aid post to their ambulance, to transport him to the nearest
hospital. The National WW1 Museum & Memorial



I really felt that I had reached the supreme moment of my life

“The 4th celebration in Paris. To
our delight the nurses were asked by the French government to march in
the parade. It was the first time women have ever marched in a parade in Paris.
We formed in the Place de Trocadero at 8:45am. I carried the flag, it was the
proudest moment of my life, in fact I don’t think I ever had that proud feeling
before. But when we fell in line behind the Marines, our band playing Dixie and
I held that banner on high to the cheers of the crowd “Vive l’Amerique!”
I really felt that I had reached the supreme moment of my life. You can’t imagine
the exalted sensation of marching through that sea of cheering people, throwing
flowers before us, and every now and then someone would shout: “I want to
touch that flag, I love it! The flowers are for it!

july 4th 1918, Paris, American Red Cross nurse, Elizabeth Ashe “Intimate
Letters from France During America’s First Year of War”
– Photo: July 4th 1918, Paris, proud American Red Cross Nurses marching in the parade. La Contemporaine

                              June 26 1918, Pa…

                              June 26 1918, Paris, a Franco-American Red Carpet Event.

‘June 26 1918 – The official American
Expeditionary Force
“America’s Answer to the Hun”
was presented for the first time at the Gaumont
Palace in Paris. The house was crowded with French and Americans, including celebrities such as Marshal Joffre, Ambassador Sharp, the
British Minister, and many French Senators and Ministers. One
section of the theater was reserved for the wounded marines who were
brought to the theater in huge trucks, and the
ovation they received was tremendous. During that period, all France, and
especially Paris, had come to realize that the Hun had been stopped, and
that the Americans had played an important part in the fight.

picture depicted the enormous effort that America had put forth, both in
an industrial and a military way and was given a mighty reception.

Copies of the film were promptly
sent to all the allied and neutral countries for
showing there. The big commercial producers,
Gaumont and Pathe, sent it to all their theaters in France, and it was used
most successfully among the troops, in factories,
universities, schools, etc.’

AEF in Print: An Anthology of American Journalism in World War I
– Photo: June
26 1918 Arrival of the guests at the Gaumont Palace in Paris. La Contemporaine,
 See more photos of the “Red Carpet” event
. And the awesome YouTube video of the film “America’s Answer to the Hun”

Marines Capture Belleau Wood

US Marines at Belleau Wood.

June 25 1918, Belleau Wood–The battle for Belleau Wood had raged for nearly three weeks; after multiple attacks and counterattacks, the Americans had secured large parts of the wood, but German resistance continued.  The Marines who had begun the assault had been relieved on June 16th, but came back six days later to finish the job.  However, an attack on the 23rd was repulsed with heavy casualties, and the French were convinced to provide overwhelming artillery support.  At 3AM on the 25th, the French began a 14-hour bombardment of the woods, after which the Marines were able to capture the remaining German machine gun posts.  The next day, the Americans were able to report: “Woods now entirely US Marine Corps.”  Over the twenty-day battle, more than half the Marines engaged were killed or wounded.

Today in 1917: Room 40 Begins Aiding Convoys

Today in 1916: Austrians Abandon Asiago
Today in 1915:  British Force Returns After Looting Bukoba



night was a perfect inferno”

officers coming in wounded, terribly, terribly, wounded, rarely complain. They
have endured their hardships and suffering gloriously. My heart has bled by the
things I have seen.”

June 1918, Belleau Wood, American Surgeon J.T. Boone’s letter to his wife. He received the Medal of Honor for his incessant work and heroism in WW1, especially during the Belleau Wood battle.  In one instance,
on June 25 1918, Dr. Boone
followed the attack of one battalion against enemy positions in Belleau Wood, establishing advanced dressing
stations under continuous shelling. More about Dr. Boone @ the Library of Congress –  Illustration: June 1918, US Marine regimental aid station in Belleau Wood, France –