Category: Paris


There’s nothing I don’t
know about Fords by now.” 

“My Ford has a temperamental disposition, poor dear, and
we can never tell what she will do next. She has really been awful
to my nerves during this last month, as I have driven her every day, and
every day she has done something. There’s nothing I don’t know about Fords by
now. First, her carburetor leaked perpetually for a week, so we changed the
carburetor. Then she had three tire-changing fits, so we got new ones. You’d think that would be enough, but no, we took
her all to pieces and cleaned out the carbon, for the second time in two weeks,
and put her together again. She wasn’t a bit grateful, and the next day dropped
off her gasoline pipe for me. I must say to her credit that she had the sense
to do it in the garage doorway, and not at the Place de l’Opera or the Champs Elysees
or the Arc de Triomphe – why add insult to injury ?”

WW1 American lady ambulance driver in Paris, France “Back of the Front in France: Letters from Amy Owen Bradley”
Photo: 1918, France,  American ambulance drivers working on a Ford – Radcliffe
Institute – Harvard University



“What a wonderful meaning is wrapped up in this one word; what
wonderful thoughts it bring to all of us. Let’s write on the banners — VICTORY!”

November 1918, The T.p.a. Magazine
– Photo: 1918, celebrating the armistice in Paris – Jules Richard @ collection C. Roitel et Y. Leborgne

July 4th 1918, Paris – It was a grand da…

July 4th 1918, Paris – It was a grand day, full
of heart-warming feelings. Up near the grand stand the crowd was condensed into
one huge nosegay of black bobbing heads. On the
grandstand famous personages made their appearance, ambassadors and ministers,
the great of earth. They were greeted with cheers, but not with a real ovation.
They were not the stars in this cast! Who cares for diplomats, phrase-makers,
phrase-breakers, swivel-chair-nobles when the real heroes, the French and the American poilus, the saviors of Paris, pass by? Certainly
not the Parisians.

And so they then turned their
gaze, thousands on thousands of brown Gallic eyes upon the exact point
down the street, where the American soldiers would
arrive. And suddenly a shout – not exactly a shout; rather, a big happy
hurrah—burst simultaneously from thousands of grateful happy hearts.

Here they come! Les Américains! Here they come! Strong emotion swept
the crowd like a breeze: Vive I’Amérique! Vive les Américains! And all
that excited sea of souls laughed and cried and shouted and sobbed and rocked
in glad exultation over these fine, big, clean garçons who had fought so
splendidly, so desperately, so victoriously beside their own brave poilus.

The Saturday Evening Post, Vol 191 – Photos: Independence Day 1918
in Paris. La Contemporaine. More photos of this beautiful day @ Gallica



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


                                                   LONG LIVE THE UNITED STATES!

100 years ago, in Paris, French school children and their
teacher celebrating Independence Day. Note: The “Vivent les Etats-Unis” sign; the correct spelling is “Vive les
Etats-Unis”. 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”

“A French observation balloon looked for all t…

“A French observation balloon looked
for all the world like a
gigantic pig without legs, peering at

The Saturday Evening Post, 1918 – Photo: June 15 1918, A French ballon flying over Issy-Les-Moulineaux, near Paris, France.


“I wish they’d hurry and ship us off to the front." 

30 1918, Paris
– In the midst of a shelling by Big Bertha, the long-range German gun
Hemingway and his friend Brumback, arrive in Paris, at the Gare du Nord. Hemingway
asked his friend : "Tell the taxi to drive up where those shells
are falling. We’ll get a story for the Star that’ll make their eyes pop out
back in Kansas City.” A heavy tip to the driver allowed them to begin what
Brumback recalled, as “one of the strangest taxi drives I shall probably
ever experience.” They spent over an hour driving through Paris trying to
catch up with the bursts. Finally they succeeded. “The shell hit the
facade of the Madeleine”
Brumback wrote, “chipping off a foot or so
of stone. No one was hurt. We heard the projectile rush overhead. It sounded as
if it were going to land right in the taxi with us. It was quite

they had exhausted the possibilities of Big Bertha, Paris soon became as
monotonous as Chicago. “This is getting to be a bore,” Hemingway told
Brumback. “I wish they’d hurry and ship us off to the front.” A day
or two later, fortunately, they did leave for Italy.

Apprenticeship of Ernest Hemingway 

– Photo: Hemingway’s passport


                                                                   “Paris is not terrified

spite of the activity of “Big Bertha", Paris enjoys
the air. Little attention is paid to the inaccurate bombardment, and
the boulevards are still crowded with unconcerned pedestrians.”

April 1918, Paris
Under the Long-Range Gun – Robert McBride – Photo: April 21 1918, Champs Elysées, Paris. 


“I went over to the Tuileries Garden to sit in…

“I went over to the Tuileries Garden to sit in the warm sunshine. Several of
our American boys were playing baseball. Their lean, strong, young bodies assumed true
professional baseball curves as they pitched swift
straight balls. A little crowd of Parisians, old men, young girls and children,
gathered. They gazed open mouthed and with wide-eyed admiration at our handsome
lads. When a ball went wide of its mark a child would
dash after it and bring it proudly back, to the Americans. The boys were
chewing gum and ragging one another, but they always paused to smile and give
the French kiddie a reassuring pat. This American game of baseball was more interesting to the spectators than the great gun…”

Amercian suffragist in Paris – Behind the Battle Line: Around
the World in 1918
– Photo: April 1918, Jardin des Tuileries, Paris – American
soldiers playing baseball, Library of Congress – Here, awesome short video showing one of
these baseball games at the Jardin des Tuileries in Spring 1918.