Category: us army

“A wooden leg is without a doubt a very bad
handicap to any man, but we contend a wooden head is worse.”


Saturday, September 13 1919 – “You Said It Bo!”, The America, a daily paper published on the high seas –  National WWI Museum and
Memorial
Photo: 1919, “The trick is to show them it’s not the end of the world" – American veterans with
nurses, all smiling for the camera – U/PortraitsofWar
on Reddit

                                                 Over The Top… for YOU!

This awesome photo belongs to Mrs Terry Jo Riddle Garbus, member of the Facebook group “Old
Photographs Of The World”
. It shows a WW1 American soldier en repos with his sweetheart — About this photo Mrs Garbus writes:
“my maternal great grandparents during WWI” – Later, the lovebirds had 12
children together! (click on the photo to get to Mrs Garbus’ Facebook post)

                                                          “I dont like any sargeant”

“I dont like any sargent but this one particular. The first day out he kept sayin “Prepare to mount” and then “Mount”.  Finally I
went up to him and told him that as far as I was concerned he could
cut that stuff for I was always prepared to do what I was told even though it was
the middle of the night. He said, Fine, then I was probably prepared to
scrub pans all Sunday.”

Text & illustration: WW1 – Dere
Mable: Love letters of a Rookie

                                  
“Here they come, left,
right, left, right!”

“Don’t they all look fine! In their uniforms so spic and span they present a charming sight”

Here they come, left, right, left, right! America’s
greatest marching song
September 6 1919, Homecoming parade in Arlington
Heights, IL – Collection of Arlington Heights Historical Society

                                   “They did not cheer at the sight of their native shores”

“The return voyage was lacking the
excitement and adventure of the trip to France, more than two years before.
Those veterans who were fortunate enough to come back had developed character
and seriousness: to them, life could never again be the same. In the lines of
their faces was written the inflexible resolution that had swept them over the
enemy’s strongest resistance, and in their steady eyes was the look that had
calmly faced death in every form. Their early excitement had given place to
sober contemplation, and they did not cheer at the sight of their native
shores.”

September 5 1919, part of the
famous 1st Division arrives home, in Hoboken, New Jersey, see photo History
of the First Division During the World War, 1917-1919 
Photos: September 1919,
“1st Division at Sea”. The close-ups

show these soldiers’
stern and weary faces –
National Archives

Note: The First Infantry Division also known as
the “Fighting First” earned the distinction of being:The First
permanent division in the regular Army – The First American
division to land in France – The First American division in the
trenches – The First American division to fight
in WW1 and suffer combat casualties – The First
to use modern, combined arms operations – The First
to defeat the enemy at the Battle of Cantigny.

First Division Museum

                                                             “Handsome little fellows”

“I know foxes get lots of the farmers chickens, and many
partridges, and pheasants, but they pay for what they get by their destruction
of mice and other things, and anyway they are too smart to destroy.

The babies make the cutest little
pets…They are handsome little fellows and have the softest fur running thru
every change of gold and yellow brown, with white throats, they are an
entrancing sight.”

Farm Boys
And Girls Leader
(postwar magazine) – Photo: 1918/1919, France, American soldiers playing with “baby foxes” – Missouri Over There

                                                           “Let’s drop the Hero Stuff”

‘Home isn’t so far away now. We can measure, almost in days,
the time remaining ahead of us in France. As we sit in our sanctum, penning
these words, we can smell the sea; Ahead of us, three thousand miles away, is
Hoboken. But – There’ll be jobs to look for when we get back. We must continue
to eat and dress and live in civil life and we won’t have any Uncle Sam handing
us three meals a day. Yes, there’ll be work to look for.

And we’ll have to come down to earth, too, in looking for
jobs. For a time, we’ll have lot of fun playing the Returning Hero and Prodigal
Son stuff. But, that will end. There’ll come a time when we’ll discover that a
man may be a Perfect Hero and a Bum Mechanic; an Ideal Over the Topper but a
Poor Sign Painter; a Dashing Machine Gun Nemesis and a Darned Poor Clerk.

We’ll have to offer the employers more than a War Record.
We’ll have to Deliver the Goods. So let’s drop the Hero Stuff before the folks
at home get tired of us, before the employers get the idea we’re asking for
jobs solely or the strength of the fact we came over.

There are a lot of efficient men in our line of work who
didn’t come over. This hurts us. But, it’s the truth. Think it over.’

1919, American soldiers in France – The Lorraine Cross,
published by the 79th Division
– Photo: 1919, front of the City Hall of Trenton, New
Jersey, a group of citizens welcoming the returning soldiers – Library of Congress

                                                              “Godspeed Mon Ami”

September
1st 1919
– Arrived in Brest this morning on scheduled time at the
station. I was greeted by Marshal Foch who had come down to Brest the night
before to say goodbye. The marshal made a very nice address complimenting me
upon the way I handled the task before me during those past two years. In my
reply, I emphasized the honor I felt in having him personally come to bid me
Godspeed. I also touched upon the cordial relations between France and the
United States and expressed a sincere hope for the continuance of this
friendship.

At 3 o’clock
the Leviathan began its homeward journey. There were a number of small French
destroyers with bands aboard which came out alongside
and circled about us as
we left. I was very touched when I noticed that the marshal had boarded a small
French ship and had come alongside just as we were leaving to wave goodbye
again.

As we were
leaving the harbor of Brest I went up on the Captain’s bridge where I could better wave to the people who had come out to say good-bye this last time.’

American General Pershing bidding farewell
to France – John J.
Pershing Diary. July 31,1919-July 11,1920
– more about this historic
farewell “Marshal Foch Bids General Pershing an Affectionate Farewell”—Photo:
September 1st

1919, Brest, The Final Handshake –

SCU
Digital Collections

– Also, YouTube  “Pershing’s Farewell to France”

Note: Although Pershing embarked for home on September 1st

1919,
American troops remained in France through the end of the year. And according
to the terms of the Armistice, American soldiers occupied a zone in
the Rhineland
until 1923.

                                                       “I’m coming home”

“Sweet mamma I have did my bit now I am coming home – be good
until I get there have plenty to drink at the house I mean whiskey – hello
sister brother is on his way at last an we will have some fun – it
taken me 11 days to make the trip goodbye from your son Ramsey.”

1919, France, African American soldier, Ramsey
Adkins, 370th Infantry, writing a beautiful note home, as he embarks on his journey home – When Johnny Comes Marching Home – Photo: American
soldiers and sailors sailing from Brest to NYC –  U.S. Navy’s Naval History and Heritage Command

“The view of the mouth of
the Hudson River and the Statue of Liberty strikes something in all of
us. … As the steam whistles blast out a
chorus and Manhattan comes into view, one can almost feel the beat of the
city—and New York was certainly beating in August 1919.”

Doctor
to the Resistance: The Heroic True Story of an American Surgeon and His Family
in Occupied Paris
– Photo: 1919, New York! Missouri Over
There