previous arrow
next arrow
previous arrow
next arrow

Dispatch Newletter

The WWI Centennial Dispatch is a weekly newsletter that touches the highlights of WWI centennial and the Commission's activities. It is a short and easy way to keep tabs on key happenings. We invite you to subscribe to future issues and to explore the archive of previous issues.

update subscription preferences

View this in your browser

DISPATCH header 07152019

August 13, 2019

First armatures arrived in NJ

Full size armatures of the first nine figures out of the 38 in the sculpture for the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC arrived August 8 at sculptor Sabin Howard's studio in New Jersey, shipped from Stroud, UK where they were fabricated. The armatures will be coated with clay and then sculpted by hand, preparing them for the bronze casting process.

Commemorative reenactment of historic post-WWI military convoy underway

MVPA convoy

The Military Vehicle Preservation Association is sponsoring a reenactment of the 1919 military convoy that traveled across the Lincoln Highway, from the East Coast to the West Coast, to celebrate the victory in World War I. The 2019 MVPA Transcontinental Convoy got on the road August 10th in York, PA and ends September 14th in San Francisco, CA. Click here to read more about the convoy, and its arrival in Galion, OH on August 17. More information on the Convoy is available from MVPA here. If you are wondering where the Convoy is at any moment, click on this link for the Live Convoy Tracker.

Ridgefield, CT students dig into WWI history with Trench Restoration project

DIgging into History

A group of 15 Connecticut students participated in the "Digging Into History: WWI Trench Restoration” program in Seicheprey, France this summer. The Connecticut State Library’s program brought participants to the site of the first German offensive against American troops to restore a section of trench once occupied by Connecticut’s 102nd Infantry Regiment. Click here to read about about the trench restoration effort, and the experiences of Ridgefield High School seniors Aaron Cohen and Mairead Lacey in France during the three-week program.

A century ago in WWI, six soldiers from Chandler, OK were killed on same day

Matheny headstone

Only the names on the telegrams were different. Otherwise, the six were exactly the same: Same date. Same place. Even the same wording. “It must’ve been gut-wrenching,” said Paul Vassar, who still has a hard time grasping what it was like for his hometown — losing six of its young men on the same day in World War I. A retired district judge, Vassar has written a book about this tragic chapter in his hometown’s history. It’s called “The Boys: The Story of a Town and War.” Click here to read more about the book,, and how the tragic story "was lost to time" in an Oklahoma town after WWI.

'Hello Girls' documentary tells story of women on the front lines in World War I

James Theres

An errant Google search and a last-minute, fortuitous find at the National Archives in Washington, D.C., made James Theres’ documentary “The Hello Girls” come together. Theres, with three documentaries under his belt, started searching in 2017 for a project to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I in November 1918. Read more about how a mistake in a Google search for information on WWI set him on the path to his award-winning documentary.

August Offerings at National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City

Living the Great War August 2019

A weekend event featuring the Living History Volunteer Corps and living historians presenting real WWI artifacts for visitors to inspect, a panel discussion on challenges faced by returning soldiers from war and a presentation on the race riots of the “Red Summer” of 1919 are among the August offerings at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. On Saturday, Aug. 24 at 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday, Aug. 25 at 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. the Museum and Memorial is sponsoring Living the Great War. This free weekend event features the Living History Volunteer Corps and other World War I living historians sharing their knowledge and inviting the public to inspect their collections in a camp setting on the Museum and Memorial grounds. Click here to read more about this and other August activities at the National WWI Museum and Memorial

“Letters from Over There” by 2nd Lt Parke Tolman Scott of Armstead, MT

Quartermaster Supply unit in France

K.C. Picard, Idaho WW1 Centennial Commissioner, tells the story of how 2nd Lt Parke Tolman Scott of Montana kept the home front informed of what was happening with the AEF in France through his DATELINE FRANCE: “Letters from Over There” postings to the Dillon Tribune newspaper in Beaverhead County, MT. Read more about how the 25-year-old gas and oil officer for the AEF Quartermaster Depot in France reached out to his family and community with news about the war front and commentary that was in keeping with the American Expeditionary Forces’ strict military and security needs.

The Army’s Message to Returning World War I Troops? Behave Yourselves

Not with this on

The shelling stopped on Nov. 11, 1918, sending millions of American soldiers back to the United States to pick up where they had left off before joining or being drafted into the war effort. For one officer, the return meant facing a perfunctory public welcome and superficial support. A series of posters — on display at the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Mo., until Sept. 15 — designed by the Army to show America’s discharged soldiers how they should behave once they returned to civilian life, provides evidence of the nation’s blindness to the toll modern war took on those who endured it. The Army didn’t want the flood of veterans returning home to become a disruptive presence or a financial burden on society. Click here to read the entire New York Times Magazine article about the post-war debates over the government’s responsibility to care for its military forces in the war's aftermath.

WWI Changed the Meaning of ‘Barbaric’

Walter Benjamin

Walter Benjamin (1892–1940) was a philosopher, cultural critic, and essayist. Associated with the Frankfurt School, Benjamin influenced many of his contemporaries, including Bertolt Brecht, Gershom Scholem, and Theodor Adorno. Benjamin’s best-known essays include “The Task of the Translator,” “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction,” and “Theses on the Philosophy of History.” In 1940, he killed himself in Portbou, on the French-Spanish border, when his attempt to escape Nazi forces was thwarted. Click here to read Benjamin's penetrating remarks on the  barbarity of the Great War, reprinted from The Storyteller Essays on the Literary Hub web site.

From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

WWI Now:
Philanthropist David Rockefeller, Jr. 

David Rockefeller, Jr.

In August 5th's edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 134, host Theo Mayer spoke with David Rockefeller Jr., scion of the legendary American family and a very successful business leader and philanthropist in his own right. Mr. Rockefeller is involved in many prestigious non-profit organizations, including the Council on Foreign Relations and the Museum of Modern Art. In the interview, Mr. Rockefeller discusses the connection between his family's early philanthropic ventures and the First World War, his impression of the National Memorial maquette, and why WWI is important to remember.  Click here to read the entire interview.

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New - Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

Now and They - WWI to modern Air force

Episode #135
Focus On: War in The Sky

Episode #135

Host - Theo Mayer

Introduction - Host | @ 01:45

Balloonatic: James Allen Higgs Jr. - Host | @ 04:35

Erwin Bleckley & the Lost Battalion - LtCol Doug Jacobs USA (Ret.) | @ 08:05

WWI War Tech: Interrupter Gear - Host | @ 13:50

PTSD in WWI Pilots - Mark Wilkins | @ 16:40

Eddie Rickenbacker Profile - Host | @ 23:30

Quentin Roosevelt Killed - Host | @ 26:05

New Memorial to WWI Airmen - Michael O’neal & Robert Kasprzack | @ 28:05

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise


World War I Collector's Bundle $29.95

Collect all commemorative coins and lapel pins in one purchase! 

  • Coins: Each piece is die-struck, bronze alloy, with nice gravity (unlike cheaper zinc coins)
  • Enamel inlay provides premium detailing and finish
  • Each coin and pin comes with its own commemorative packaging, adding value and gifting appeal.

This collection includes a WWI Centennial Coin, Centennial Lapel Pin, Bells of Peace Commemorative Coin, Bells of Peace Commemorative Lapel Pin, and U.S. Victory Lapel Pin. Originally sells for $34.35, now only $29.95.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.

Oscar Lysne

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


Oscar Lysne

Submitted by: Jay Lysne {Grandson}

Oscar Lysne was born around 1890, Oscar Lysne served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1919.

Story of Service

Oscar Lysne was born in Moscow, Minnesota on June 24th, 1890 to Norwegian immigrants Ole and Kate Lysne. He was mustered into the service on Sept 22, 1917 at Albert Lea, MN. He trained at Camp Dodge, IA and Camp Cody, NM until June 28th, 1918 when he shipped off to France as a replacement.

He landed in Le Havre, France on July 15th, 1918 and was assigned to I Company, 3rd Bn, 166th Infantry Regiment, 42nd Infantry Division. I Company had just suffered very heavy casualties in the Champagne Marne Defensive, including the loss of an entire section in a “sacrifice post”. He first went into action with the Rainbow Division on July 25th, 1918.

Oscar participated in the Aisne-Marne, St. Mihiel, and Meuse-Argonne Operations, where he was wounded below the knee by machine gun fire and a second time by artillery.

Read Oscar Lysne's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

update subscription preferences

View this in your browser

DISPATCH header 07152019

August 6, 2019

World War I documentary project wins National History Day First Prize

Sebastian Pizzini

Every year, thousands of students and teachers gather to share their passion for history in the National History Day Contest, which places students and their research projects into a friendly competition. Hosted by National History Day (NHD), a non-profit educational organization, students compete at the local and state level, where finally the top students then advance to the National Contest at the University of Maryland at College Park. This year, Sebastian Pizzini from Puerto Rico, placed first in the Senior Division: Individual Documentary category with his original work, Heroes: African Americans in World War I. US World War I Centennial Commission intern Joshua Baker interviewed Sebastian to find out how he became interested in WWI, how he settled on his winning project, and what the NHD competition was like.

"One can only wonder what would have happened if these US equines had not contributed to the war efforts." 

Brooke USA

Since 2017, the Brooke USA organization has put the spotlight on the services of American horses and Mules in World War I through their very popular Horse Heroes site here on the United States World War I Centennial Commission web site. As the commemoration period for the centennial of World War I winds down, we wanted to follow up with the Brooke team to review everything the organization has done to put a well-deserved spotlight on the horses and mules that supported the war effort of the United States and its Allies a century ago, and also talk about the Brooke mission to support the 21st Century Horse Heroes that make life better for people in the developing world.  Brooke USA Executive Director Emily Dulin, and Brooke USA's Horse Heroes Special Project Volunteer Jo Ellen Hayden, took the time to answer a few questions for us.

View the Match: Solving the Mystery of a Doughboy Grandfather, and Celebrating a Family Reunion

Erwin Heibel

"In April of 2017, I received a message through my genealogical service account from a man I didn’t know named Johannes Heibel. I immediately noted the highlighted link below the message that read “View the match.” Needless to say, I was intrigued to have been contacted by a relative whose name I did not recognize. However, the message I was about to read would lead to a family reunion that I never would have imagined." From that intriguing beginning, David Harstin maps out a trans-Atlantic detective story, 100 years in the making, that ends up connecting a German boy born in 1920 with an American family in Tennessee. Click here to read the entire story of how 21st Century genealogical sleuthing solved a World War I family mystery a century later.

Centennial anniversary of a World War I black veterans group deserves attention

Victory Monument, at 35th & King Drive in Chicago

The American Legion George L. Giles Post #87 will celebrate its 100-year anniversary Aug. 17 and 18 in Chicago. For 93 of those years, the post has kept this important history alive by leading an annual Veterans Day parade to the Victory Monument. That sculpture (above) was built in 1927 to honor the Eighth Regiment of the Illinois National Guard — an African American unit. “At the time we formed the post in 1919, this was the only place that we were allowed to meet and discuss what had happened in our life,” said Cmdr. Ashley Shine Jr., 73. “This 100-year anniversary is quite a celebration.” Click here to read the full store of the Post's hero namesake George Giles, and how his best friend Earl B. Dickerson — a man who went on to break important racial barriers — founded the George L. Giles Post #87, making sure his friend’s name would never be forgotten.

Veterans mark World War I milestone in Hiawatha, Kansas

Homer White

A week of events honoring the hometown hero of Hiawatha, Kansas, came to a close on August 3 with a procession through downtown Hiawatha led by the Homer White American Legion Post No. 66. Homer White week honors the World War I fallen soldier killed in action in Germany and laid to rest on Aug. 3, 1919, following the end of the war in late 1918. The 100th anniversary of his funeral and the recent 100th anniversary of the end of hostilities in the Great War, which raged from July 1914 to November 1918, makes this an especially meaningful time for the Hiawatha legionnaires, who strive to memorialize the conflict in a world where no World War I veterans still live. Click here to read more about this centennial observance, and how today's veterans feel connected to those of a war one century ago.

Flag reaches final resting place, in memory of Maine World War I soldier 

Maine flag donated

When Alison Jones Webb and her husband went off to see the movies at the St. Lawrence Arts Center in Portland, Maine, they weren't particularly thinking about World War I. But the movie was “The Big Parade,” a 1925 war drama that was one of the most successful movies of the silent era. As she watched the movie, Webb found myself thinking about Garth Wise, her maternal grandmother’s half brother, who fought in World War I, and a certain America flag that "doesn’t belong in my basement any longer." Click here to read the entire story of Garth Wise, the 48-star flag that once draped his coffin, and the "sense of responsibility to honor his memory as a soldier" that found a new home for the flag.

WWI changed how Quincy residents ate

Quincy, IL grocer

Wars profoundly change a nation's relationships with other governments and often its own domestic way of life. Far from the battlefields, the First World War incidentally affected what Americans ate and how they thought about food. After the US entered the war in April 1917, a massive national conservation effort began on the home front to save the most substantial and nutritious food for troops fighting in Europe. Voluntary programs with pledge cards distributed to families initiated "Meatless Mondays," "Wheatless Wednesdays" and other programs. Writing in the Quincy, IL Herald-Whig newspaper, Joseph Newkirk looks at how the large scale national efforts to provide food for American soldiers fighting in trenches and fields of Europe affected the people of small town America when they sat down for dinner.

Community Celebrates New World War I Memorial in Duluth, Minnesota

Duluth Memorial detail

The City of Duluth hosted a special ribbon-cutting ceremony on August 3 to celebrate the new World War I memorial at Memorial Park. The memorial was originally made in 1928 for the 22 West Duluthians who served and died in the war. At the time, there were 23 ash trees planted with small plaques that were engraved with the name of each soldier. They were placed on the foot of each tree. The 23rd marker was for the unknown war veteran who died. After many years, the memorial had damage. Local leaders and community members said it was time for an upgrade. In May, construction was started to renovate the memorial. Click here to read about (and watch video of)  the upgraded Memorial that honors the names of the 22 soldiers who died in line of duty during the war along with Duluth’s 167 Gold Star men and women.

World War I monument being updated at Craven County, NC Courthouse

Craven County NC memorial

The American Legion, The New Bern Historical Society, and the Craven County Department of Recreation and Parks have partnered to update the World War I Monument at the Craven County Courthouse. The New Bern Historical Society says the goal is to update the WWI monument that has stood on the courthouse grounds since 1944. The update has two parts: to clean the 75-year-old obelisk and to add the names of Craven County residents who were not originally listed. The updated monument will be unveiled to the public in September. Click here to read more about this North Carolina memorial restoration project that coincides with the 100th anniversary of the founding of the American Legion.

Family is reunited with missing flag from their World War I veteran ancestor

Marcellus Herod

On July 17, a folded flag was found in the middle of the road in Prince George's, inside of a shattered glass display case. Navy veteran Tom Jarrett picked the flag up, knowing it had to mean something to someone. Washington, DC television station ABC7 ran his story in an attempt to help find the owner. And the right person was watching: William Holley's oldest daughter. She immediately called her dad. 79-year-old Holley had inherited the flag after the death of his wife's uncle, WWI veteran Marcellus Herod, in the early 1980s. It was the memorial flag from Herod's casket. Click here to read more about how the military treasure was lost, and watch moving video of the military ceremony reuniting the flag with the World War I veteran's family.

Descendants of RI Italian World War I vet span five generations at reunion

Michael Tudino

Michael Tudino led an adventurous life that took him from the small Italian town of Sant'Ambrogio sul Garigliano to the jungles of Brazil, the textile factories of Industrial New England, and the front lines of World War I. On a warm summer weekend last month in Warwick, Rhode Island, roots that the man probably never imagined to have planted culminated in a family reunion that spanned five generations and included as many as 70 members of the family that came to be because of Tudino’s marriage to Teresa Bianco. Click here to read more about the interesting life that Tudino led, his harrowing experiences in World War I, and how his legacy was felt in the gathering of so many people who owe their very lives to his own.

Major General George Owen Squier nominated to Aviation Hall of Fame by Michigan WW1 Centennial Commission

Major General George O. Squier

The Michigan WW1 Centennial Commission has nominated Major General George O. Squier the National Aviation Hall of Fame. Squier made a tremendous impact on early military aviation. He was the pioneer in military aviation, making the U.S. Army leaders in this field until the World War 1. He also established Langley Field which served as a research facility for civilian and military aviation and eventually space travel. Click here to read the full story of this World War I hero and scientist whose work in and after the war continues to affect what you hear and see every day.

From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

Remembering Veterans:
Dr. Nancy Gentile Ford on Foreign-Born Soldiers in the WWI American Army 

Nancy Gentile Ford

In August 4th's edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 134, host Theo Mayer spoke with Dr. Nancy Gentile Ford. She is the author of the book Americans All! Foreign-born Soldiers in World War I. Using the voluminous original research materials for that book which she has accumulated, Dr. Ford, a professor at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania where she teaches 20th century American military cultural and political history, created the Americans All! web site on the U.S. World War I centennial Commission web site.  Click here to read the entire interview, and find out how the book came to be written, how the web site came to be built, and the lessons about WWI and America that came out of all of her research.

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration. 

Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New - Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

John D. Rockefeller

Episode #134
Highlights:American Philanthropy & WWI

Host - Theo Mayer
100 Years Ago: American Philanthropy and WWI - Host | @ 02:00

A Century of the Rockefeller Foundation - David Rockefeller Jr. | @ 09:20

Commission News: Focus on the Memorial - Host | @ 17:00

Remembering Veterans: Americans All - Nancy Gentile Ford | @ 19:10

Articles & Posts: Weekly Dispatch - Host | @ 30:40

Doughboy MIA for week of August 5

William E. Babinger

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday's MIA this week is Corporal William E. Babinger. Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on September 9, 1891, William Edward Babinger was one of 4 children born to Lucy and Charles Babinger, who later moved the family to Detroit, Michigan. It was there, while working as a day laborer, that the brown hair and brown eyed William registered for the draft on June 5, 1917. Upon receiving his call, he was inducted on October 2, 1917 and sent to Camp Custer to train with the 85th Division of the ‘national’ (draft) army, where he was assigned to the 339th Infantry regiment. Dreaming of service in France, the 339th was nevertheless destined for something much more divertive – service in Russia as part of the allied effort at helping hold the ‘white Russian’ line against the Soviet Russians.

A Corporal with Headquarters Company at the time of his death, he was at first listed as being wounded and having died October 2, 1918, then as accidentally killed on that date. However, further inquiries ascertained that he and three others of his unit (who also remain MIA) were in fact killed on September 29, 1918 near the town of Obozerskaya and buried in temporary graves nearby. They remained unrecovered when the 339th left Russia in June, 1919.

A 1929 expedition by the VFW, though resulting in the return of 86 sets of remains, did not turn up Babinger or the other three from his regiment. However, a 1934 return expedition (organized after then President Roosevelt officially recognized the Soviet government), resulted in several sets of remains being brought in by the Russians from known American graves. Two of these sets, recovered on August 8, 1934 from Obozerskaya, were brought in from a spot of logged over land opposite the local railway station water tower and some 100 yards east of it, to be compared with dental profiles of the four missing men from HQ CO/339th Infantry. None were a match.

The story doesn’t end there – over the next three weeks we will be taking a look at the cases of the three other men to gain a better perspective of this particular situation, at which time we will be better able to make a determination as to dispositions.

And how did we come about this much detail concerning Corporal Babinger’s case? Through the valued donations made by YOU! This past week saw us back in St, Louis digging through the paperwork needed to make determinations in these 100 year old ‘cold cases’; a trip that was made possible by contributions that continue to come in by individuals with enough care and concern for our missing Doughboys. Time doesn’t dim their deeds – only failing memories. Want to help us keep those memories alive? Consider making a donation to Doughboy MIA and help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. It takes only a moment and your tax deductible contribution can be as large as you want or as small as $10.00 on our ‘Ten for Them’ program. Your contribution will help us make a full accounting of all 4,523 US MIA’s from WW1 and keeps these lost men from being forgotten. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.  Remember: A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

US Victory Lapel Pin

U.S. WWI Victory
lapel pin

Proudly wearing the World War 1 U.S. Victory lapel pin is a meaningful way to honor the contributions made for our country one hundred years ago. Soldiers received Victory buttons upon their discharge from service in “the Great War”. Hand cast in jeweler’s alloy and hand finished in a satin bronze patina, the design features the star, symbolizing victory, honor and glory; a wreath of evergreen laurel leaves symbolizing triumph over death; and the U.S. insignia, clearly identifying the country served. Measures 1” diameter.

 A portion of proceeds from the sale of this item goes towards funding the building of the national World War One Memorial in Washington, D.C. A Certificate of Authenticity as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial is included. 

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.

Louis McCahill

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


Louis McCahill

Submitted by: Colonel B. Wayne Quist {American Legion Post 110 Historian}

Louis McCahill was born around 1896. Louis McCahill served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1918.

Story of Service

Corporal Louis McCahill, American Legion Post 110, Lake City, Minnesota

American Legion Post 110 in Lake City, Minnesota was named in honor of World War I veteran Corporal Louis McCahill. He died in France on November 5, 1918 less than a week before the Armistice that ended “The Great War.” Corporal McCahill served in many engagements with the 412th Motor Truck Company 426 during the conflict. He is buried in Suresnes American Cemetery in Paris, France: Plot A, Row 4, Grave 5.

Lake City American Post 110 was named in honor of Corporal Louis McCahill on February 7, 1921. In addition, Lake City, MN named McCahill Memorial Park on Lakeshore Drive and McCahill Ballpark on Jewell Ave for Corporal Louis McCahill.

Read Louis McCahill's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

update subscription preferences

View this in your browser

DISPATCH header 07152019

July 30, 2019

Chicago community, Guardsmen Rededicate World War I Monument 

Jennifer Pritzker salutesLt. Col. (ret.) Jennifer Pritzker (left), founder of the Pritzker Military Museum and Library in Chicago, salutes the color guard as they retire the colors following a rededication of the Victory Monument in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood. The Illinois National Guard, the Pritzker Military Museum and Library, the 8th Infantry Association, the Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville, the World War I Centennial Commission, Friends of the Victory Monument Memorial and several dignitaries took part in the rededication of the Monument honoring the World War I service of the Illinois National Guard’s storied all African-American 8th Infantry Regiment. Click here to read more about the event, and the legacy of valor that the regiment blazed across three wars in America's service.

"I wouldn't trade the incredible time I've had with this team for anything." 

Chris Isleib

As the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission shifts its mission to focus exclusively on the construction of the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC,  there is also a shift in staffing. Among those who will, sadly, depart the Commission team is long-term Director of Public Affairs Chris Isleib. Isleib has been with the Commission on long-term loan from the U.S. National Archives, and will return to the Archives on the first of August. Chris's trademark contributions to the Commission web site were multi-question interviews via email with a wide assortment of individuals inside, outside, and around the Commission, and across the world. As what may be (but we hope isn't) his final contribution, Chris took the opportunity to interview one more important person about his tenure, and his personal experiences as part of the Centennial Commission team—himself!

Pär Sundström: "I know we make people research and dig deeper."

Pär Sundström mug

World War I Centennial Commission intern Joshua Haynes conducted an interview with Pär Sundström, the lead bassist for Sabaton, a Swedish power metal band that focuses on writing songs about military history. They have just completed their most recent album, The Great War, which explores various themes and events from World War I. Clearly, this album means a lot to Pär and the rest of Sabaton as well as their fans. The band takes great pride in its ability to combine the value of history with the thrill of heavy metal, developing a strong fan base across the world.  Click here to read what Pär had to say about how the The Great War came to be made, and Sabaton's oeuvre.

Hundreds of black Americans killed during 1919 'Red Summer' after WWI

Chicago house red summer

America in the summer of 1919 ran red with blood from racial violence, and yet today, 100 years later, not many people know it even happened. It was branded "Red Summer" because of the bloodshed and amounted to some of the worst white-on-black violence in U.S. history. Beyond the lives and family fortunes lost, it had far-reaching repercussions, contributing to generations of black distrust of white authority. But it also galvanized blacks to defend themselves and their neighborhoods with fists and guns; reinvigorated civil rights organizations like the NAACP and led to a new era of activism; gave rise to courageous reporting by black journalists; and influenced the generation of leaders who would take up the fight for racial equality decades later. Click here to read more about how "Red Summer" in the aftermath of World War I still resonates a century later.

Walker Jagoe of Denton, Texas was one of America’s first fighter pilots

Walker Jagoe

Walker Jagoe’s passion for aviation began in 1910 when he was 14 years old. He and fellow Denton High School student Robert Storrie built a biplane glider in Jagoe’s yard. Joining the Army in 1917, Jagoe was among America’s first group of pilots in the 135th Aero Squadron, nicknamed the “Liberty Squadron.” He flew alongside celebrated pilots like Eddie Rickenbacker and future generals Carl Spaatz and Benjamin Foulois. Click here to read more about the Texas native who flew to amazing heights in World War I, which were only recognized ten years after the war's end.

100-year-old stained-glass window honors Bristol, VA World War I soldiers

BVristol, VA window detail

An antique window that can only truly be appreciated from inside the Washington County Courthouse in Bristol, VA was installed a century ago in honor of local soldiers who fought in World War I. In March 1919, the Washington County Board of Supervisors approved the manufacture and installation of a one-of-a-kind window to honor the service of local soldiers and their role in World War I. The window — made of Tiffany-stained glass — was installed on July 4, 1919, as part of the town’s Independence Day celebration. Click here to read more about the remarkable window created as “a tribute to our boys who left the country for the recent war and to the ladies who did their bit to make the world safe for democracy.”

The Lessons of the Versailles Treaty

Victor David Hanson

The Treaty of Versailles was signed in Versailles, France, on June 28, 1919. Says historian Victor David Hanson (left), "Neither the winners nor the losers of World War I were happy with the formal conclusion to the bloodbath." Noting that "The traditional criticism of the treaty is that the victorious French and British democracies did not listen to the pleas of leniency from progressive American President Woodrow Wilson," Hanson asks "A century later, how true is the traditional explanation of the Versailles Treaty?" Click here to read the entire thoughtful and contrarian perspective on how "The failure of Versailles remains a tragic lesson about the eternal rules of war and human nature itself -- 100 years ago this summer."

From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

WWI Now: Commission Executive Director Dan Dayton

Daniel Dayton mug

In July 29th's edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 133, host Theo Mayer spoke with U.S. World War I Centennial Commission Executive Director Dan Dayton about the progress of the national memorial, the newly renamed memorial fundraising arm, and how World War I continues to resonate in American society.  Click here to read the entire interview with the man who has spent the last half a decade immersed in nurturing the commemoration of World War I.

WWI Now: An Interview with Commissioner and National WWI Museum President Dr. Matthew Naylor  

Matt Naylor

In July 29th's edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 133, host Theo Mayer spoke with Dr. Matthew Naylor. Dr. Naylor is an accomplished non-profit executive, a World War I Centennial Commissioner, and Chief Executive of the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, MO. Click here to learn more about Dr. Naylor, the National Memorial and Museum, and how it complements the future memorial in Washington, D.C. (and vice versa).

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New - Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

1926 Dedication of WWI Memorial in Kansas City, MO

Episode #133
Highlights: WWI Remembered in KC & DC

Host - Theo Mayer

How Treaties Are Created - Host | @ 02:23

Food Sales at Post Offices - Host | @ 08:50

National WWI Museum and Memorial in KC - Dr. Matthew Naylor | @ 10:55

Doughboy Foundation - Dan Dayton | @ 21:20

Born in the Month of July - Dave Kramer | @ 31:30 

Articles & Posts: Weekly Dispatch - Host | @ 34:35

Doughboy MIA for week of July 29

Doughboy MIA

The regular Doughboy MIA will not be published this week as Managing Director Robert Laplander prepares for a major research trip to the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis this week to dig deep into some of the cases we've been working on. 

This was ONLY possible through YOUR generous donations! Thanks to all of you who gave to remember those men who "disappeared from the scene" over 100 years ago, the Doughboy MIA team is able to move another step forward in solving the mystery of what happened to some of these men - and possibly toward finding them. Without YOUR support we wouldn't be here, plain and simple. Doughboy MIA is an all volunteer, non-profit 501(c)3 organization that receives NO funding from the US government. We are supported only through private contributions, like YOURS.

In the coming months, you will be able to see more evidence of what your contributions are doing, as Doughboy MIA will begin publishing The Silent Sentinel, a once monthly e-newsletter in which will be brought forth articles and reports to keep all of you informed of our doings. The MIA of the week that you have come to look forward to will also continue at the same time. 

There are good changes coming to Doughboy MIA; changes we have been working toward for a long time and now, and through the generous contributions made to the organization thus far, we can move ever forward toward growing these changes even more! So please, keep those donations coming in! Visit www.ww1cc.org/mia to make yours today. The choice of size is up to you, whether you wish to donate BIG or contribute to our 'Ten For Them' program (ten bucks... who can't afford ten bucks?), whatever you choose know that EVERY dollar you send goes toward our mission: finding out what happened to these men and perhaps doing even more...

Either way, know that your contribution helps realize our motto: A Man Is Only Missing If He Is Forgotten. And you haven't let them be forgotten thus far - so don't stop now! Your contributions ARE making all the difference.

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Lest We Forget Book Cover

"Lest We Forget: The Great War"

World War I Prints from the Pritzker Military Museum & Library 

As the United States commemorates the centennial of World War I, one of the nation’s premier military history institutions pays tribute to the Americans who served and the allies they fought beside to defeat a resourceful enemy with a lavishly illustrated book.  It is an official product of the United States World War One Centennial Commission. The story of WWI is told through the memorable art it spawned―including posters from nations involved in the conflict―and a taut narrative account of the war’s signal events, its major personalities and its tragic consequences; and the timely period photographs that illustrate the awful realities of this revolutionary conflict. Most importantly, this book is a tribute to those who served in the Army, Navy, Marine Corps and what would become the Air Force. Proceeds from the sale of this book help fund the new National WW1 Memorial in Washington, DC

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.

Juan P. Quintana, Jr.

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


Juan P. Quintera, Jr.

Submitted by: Barbara Gonzales {Daughter}

Juan P. Quintana, Jr. was born around 1899. Juan Quintana served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1934.

Story of Service

Juan Quintana, Camp Mills, Long Island, New York 05/17/1919, enlisted on June 27, 1917 and was sent to Fort Logan, Colorado and Camp Kearney, California for his basic training.

The photograph by Joseph K Dixon is courtesy of the Mathers Museum Wannamaker Collection of photographs and letters documenting the service of Native American Indians. Juan was not a citizen but he became one June 2, 1924 when Congress authorized the Secretary of Interior to issue certificates of citizenship to Indians.

My father, Juan Phone Quintana was born on the Jicarilla Apache Reservation, August 24, 1899. He spent his first 16 years on the reservation helping his parents with the sheep. At the age of 9 he was finally caught by the Indian Agent and sent to school. He said his mother did not want the agent to find her children so she hid them.

At the age of 16 he decided he did not want to be a sheepherder, so he left the sheep and ran away. He caught the train to Durango, Colorado and joined the Army. He lied about his age and no one asked for documents as World War I was in full swing. Although he was not recognized as an American citizen, he said it was his country to and he wanted to protect it and serve in the US Army.

Read Juan P. Quintana, Jr.'s entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

update subscription preferences

View this in your browser

DISPATCH header 07152019

July 23, 2019

"We are a very high visibility American Legion Post since we are located in Paris, France."

Bryan Schell

Our Commission's recent commemoration efforts in Versailles, France put us in touch with some friends whom we haven't seen in a while -- the members of the world-famous American Legion Post #1 in Paris. These Legion members stand on a long tradition, one that celebrates a direct line to our World War I veterans. Post #1 is the first, and the oldest, American Legion post outside of the United States, and was created by people who had just seen the Great War end months before. Since that time, they have fulfilled a unique and special role in representing our American veterans in France, and throughout Europe. Vice Commander Bryan Schell took some time to tell us about his special post, their history, and their current activities.

World War One Centennial Commission Announces the "A.E.F. Memorial Corps"

A.E.F. Memorial Corps

The U.S. World War One Centennial Commission has announced the “A.E.F. Memorial Corps” (American Expeditionary Forces Memorial Corps) to recognize Veterans, Military, Patriotic, Historical, Service, and Community organizations that raise funds to help build and provide ongoing support for the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC. The A.E.F. Memorial Corps will induct national, state, or local organizations (or any local chapters such as American Legion or VFW posts) which hold fundraisers for the benefit of the national World War I Memorial. Those Legion and VFW Posts which have already made donations to help build the Memorial will be inducted at the organizations' respective national conventions this summer. Click here to find out more about the A.E.F. Memorial Corps, and how your organization can become a member.

4th Annual Camp Doughboy World War I History Weekend this September in NYC

Camp Doughboy 1

The fourth annual Camp Doughboy World War I History Weekend comes to Governors Island National Monument on September 14 and 15. Each day will bring living history, reenactors, authors, experts, vintage vehicles, and animals. This is the largest free public WWI exhibition in the United States. Reenactors representing the Allies and Central Powers—as well as civilians in Edwardian-era attire—are invited living history participants. The centennial of the service members returning to Governors Island is in 2019 and this group of volunteer reenactors will share the story of WWI participants. Click here to learn more about Camp Doughboy 2019, and the planned events and activities in September.

Honors given; marker placed; RIP, Private Ulysses Grant Moore

Ulysses Grant Moore flag presentation

Richard Mize is pastor of Trinity Presbyterian Church in Oklahoma City. Last weekend, he helped give belated honors to Army Private Ulysses Grant Moore, a century after he served in World War I, and 55 years after he died. As Mize writes, "Why such honors were overlooked, and why this marker never made it here to his burial site are unknown." Click here to read the entire story of how 55 years after the fact, "It took a compelling series of discoveries that started by happenstance" to finally deliver to Private Moore the much delayed and much deserved honors from his nation for his service in World War I.

Germany's World War I Debt Was So Crushing It Took 92 Years to Pay Off

German tank being demolished

At the end of World War I, Germans could hardly recognize their country. Up to 3 million Germans, including 15 percent of its men, had been killed. Germany had been forced to become a republic instead of a monarchy, and its citizens were humiliated by their nation’s bitter loss. Even more humiliating were the terms of Germany’s surrender. World War I’s victors blamed Germany for beginning the war, committing horrific atrocities and upending European peace with secretive treaties. But most embarrassing of all was the punitive peace treaty Germany had been forced to sign. The Treaty of Versailles didn’t just blame Germany for the war—it demanded financial restitution for the whole thing, to the tune of 132 billion gold marks, or about $269 billion today. How—and when—could Germany possibly pay its debt? Click here to read more about how the process took 92 years and another World War to be completed.

Fillmore County, WI restores World War I memorial entrance for 100th anniversary

Fillmore County Fairgrounds WWI Memorial Entrance Plaque

"Fillmore County remembers its history," said Nathan Pike, the Olmsted County veteran’s service officer and emcee of last week's celebration of the restoration of the World War I Memorial at the Fillmore County Fairgrounds entrance. The structure was built 100 years ago, erected to honor soldiers returning from World War I. "There were over 1,000 residents of Fillmore County that enlisted or were drafted into service during the first World War," said Pike. "Forty-eight of them were killed in action, and they did not return to Fillmore County." Click here to read more about the restoration project, and how Fillmore County remembers its citizens who served in WWI.

George Dilboy, the first Greek-American who fell in battle during World War I

George Dilboy

In 1918 George Dilboy was killed on a battlefield near Belleau, France after fighting so courageously that he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor, America’s highest medal for bravery. Dilboy was the first Greek-American soldier who fell in the line of duty. The Greek-American’s conspicuous heroism was so outstanding that he was recognized and honored by three US presidents. Woodrow Wilson signed the authorization awarding Dilboy the Medal of Honor, Warren G. Harding brought his remains back to be buried with honors at Arlington National Cemetery, and Calvin Coolidge presided at his final burial there. Click here to read more about the life and heroism of George Dilboy.

Milford celebrates: 100 years ago, WWI ended & the American Legion was born

Ernest F. Oldenburg

The American Legion in Milford, Michigan is celebrating 100 years since the end of World War I and the birth of America’s largest veteran’s organization. The Ernest F. Oldenburg American Legion Post 216 held an open house last weekend. Around 1945, Henry Ford sold the property at 510 W. Commerce Road in Milford to the American Legion with the stipulation that the post be named after his friend Ernest F. Oldenburg, a soldier from the Milford area who served with the 32nd Red Arrow Division and was killed in action in France in 1918. In 1946, the new building opened. Click here to read more about the World War I centennial commemoration activities by American Legion Post 216.

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube.  Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

Red Summer Riots

Episode #132
Highlights: Red Summer Riots 1919

100 Years Ago: Red Summer Riots - Dr. Jeffrey Sammons | @02:10

Great War Project: Retrospective - Mike Shuster | @15:15

Introducing the A.E.F. Memorial Corps - Host | @25:15

New Digital Download: "Hello Girls" Single - Host | @27:35

Articles & Posts: Weekly Dispatch - Host | @31:00

Doughboy MIA for week of July 22

Doughboy MIA

This week we bring you something different from Doughboy MIA. 

Many have wanted to know the breakdown of missing; those on land as opposed to those lost or buried at sea (L/BAS), the number of unknowns, etc. Over the last few months we have worked hard at scrutinizing the list and crunching the numbers in order to detail those who were L/BAS, especially as no complete or accurate record of them was ever made available.  So, in answer to the questions that come in, here are the numbers by cemetery and then in totals:

Aisne-Marne Cemetery = Unknown burials - 249 Tablets of the Missing - 1060

Brookwood Cemetery = Unknown burials - 41 Tablets of the Missing - 564 (All on the Tablets are L/BAS.)

Flanders Fields Cemetery = Unknown burials - 21 Tablets of the Missing - 43

Meuse-Argonne Cemetery = Unknown burials - 486 Tablets of the Missing - 954

Oise-Aisne Cemetery = Unknown burials - 601 Tablets of the Missing - 241

Somme Cemetery = Unknown burials - 138 Tablets of the Missing - 333 (Note that one Unknown grave at Somme contains seven sets of remains.)

St. Mihiel Cemetery = Unknown burials - 137 Tablets of the Missing - 284

Suresnes Cemetery = Unknown burials - 6 Tablets of the Missing - 974 (The number of missing are all L/BAS and includes 14 names believed to be L/BAS but for which further research is required.)

Total (Total Missing in Action from the war, no matter the reason) = 4,453

Unknown burials = 1,679

Subtracting the Unknown burials from the MIA's leaves 2,774 unrecovered soldier dead.

Subtracting the L/BAS total of 1,538 from the unrecovered total leaves 1,236 unrecovered soldiers dead that remain out on the battlefields.

Our goal at Doughboy MIA is to make an accounting of all these men. Over the coming years we will be researching each man individually to make a determination as to what happened to him and publishing a report. We have already been able to get several together thanks to the contributions made to our organization, which just goes to show that with your assistance we are making a difference!

Want to help? Come on over to the Doughboy MIA website at www.ww1cc.org/mia and make a tax deductible donation to our non-profit organization. Every dollar you give IS making a difference! And remember:

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Robert J. Laplander
Directing Manager for Doughboy M.I.A.

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Mint Coin Set

2018 World War I Centennial Silver Dollar Sets

No longer available from the U.S. Mint!

These Official World War I Centennial Silver Dollar Sets are only available here on the WWI Centennial Commission's online gift shop.

NOTE: Each set comes with 2 separate coins. Each set will accompany the Official Doughboy Design alongside your choice of Military Branch. 

"The United Mint certifies that this coin is a genuine 2018 World War I Centennial Silver Dollar, minted and issued in accordance with legislation passed by Congress and signed by the President on December 16, 2014, as Public Law 113-212. This coin was minted by the Department of the Treasury, United States Mint, to commemorate the centennial of America's involvement in World War I. This coin is legal tender of the United States."

A portion of the proceeds from your purchase will help build the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.

James Edward Coffey

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


James Edward Coffey

Submitted by: Donald P. Vincent {Nashua, NH American Legion Post 3}

James Edward Coffey born around 1897. James Coffey served in World War 1 with the United States Army . The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1918.

Story of Service

James Edward Coffey, the first soldier from Nashua, NH to die in battle in World War I, was born on April 22, 1896, to Daniel J. and Catherine (Dillon) Coffey.

He attended Nashua schools and St. Patrick Church, and in June 1917, became one of the first Nashua men to enlist in the Army at the outbreak of the war. He was assigned to Company D, 103rd Infantry, 26th Division, and trained in Concord and Westfield, Mass.

Coffey and his unit, the famous 26th Yankee Division commanded by Maj. Gen. Clarence R. Edwards, deployed overseas in September 1917.

Read James Edward Coffey's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

update subscription preferences

View this in your browser

DISPATCH header 07152019

July 16, 2019

Tompkins County, NY and Cornell University had outsize WWI roles

Edward Tinkham

"What possibly could this rural county have done to contribute to World War I efforts?" While spending time as an intern at the United States World War I Centennial Commission this summer, Cady Hammer decided to answer this very question. While "I never paid much attention to the history of Tompkins County besides what I knew from family stories," said Hammer, she decided to use draft cards from two of her  relatives as a jumping off point. "What I found." says Hammer, "amazed me." Click here to read the entire article about how a search that began on a whim revealed a huge legacy of WWI service in a small county and famous university of New York.

National History Day's New World War I Webinar -- A Scholarship Opportunity! 

National History Day logo

National History Day (NHD) is excited to be offering scholarship for our World War I webinar series in the fall. LEGACIES OF WORLD WAR I, the World War I Webinar series in the fall, is offering free tuition and credit for two teachers from every NHD Affiliate. Through this program, teachers can earn a certificate of professional development hours or three graduate extension credit units from the University of San Diego. Applications for a scholarship will be accepted through July 30, 2019.  Click here to read more about this exciting opportunity for educators nationwide.

Honoring Americans who served in Canadian Forces during World War I

Canadian Cross of Sacrifive at Arlington National Cemetery

It was not until April 1917, that the United States entered the First World War beside the Allied powers against the Central powers. Despite America’s delayed entry into the war, young Americans had gone north of the border to Canada to join the war effort. Canada joined the war in August 1914 as part of the British Empire, and as such, began to mobilize young troops and send them overseas as part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (C.E.F.). U.S. World War I Centennial Commission intern Josh Baker notes that after the war ended, "there needed to be a special way which the Canadian government could thank all those young Americans who fought within Canadian units" during the First World War. Click to read more about how this spirit of gratitude led to the Canadian Cross of Sacrifice at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, DC.

Albany marks Sgt. Henry Johnson Day

Henry Johnson Memorial Albany

City Officials of Albany, NY City observed the third Henry Johnson Day last month. The Day was established to honor World War I hero Sgt. Henry Johnson on the 102nd anniversary of his enlistment. The Albany man was part of the all-black 369th Infantry Regiment and his actions in May 1918 posthumously earned him the Medal of Honor. President Barack Obama bestowed the highest military honor an American soldier can receive on June 2, 2015, in a White House ceremony. The third annual Henry Johnson Award for Distinguished Community Service was awarded at the ceremony. Click here to read more about Sgt Henry Johnson, the day and award named in his honor, and the 2019 recipient of that honor.

Maryland World War I ‘Ghost Fleet’ cemetery now a national sanctuary

Ghost Fleet

An area in Maryland that’s home to abandoned World War I-era steamships has been designated a new national marine sanctuary. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the state of Maryland and Charles County announced the Mallows Bay-Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary on Monday. It contains more than 100 abandoned steamships and vessels that were built as part of the nation’s engagement in World War I. Mallows Bay is known for its “Ghost Fleet,” including partly submerged remains of more than 100 wooden steamships that were built in response to threats from World War I-era German U-boats. Click here to read more about the "Ghost Fleet" from World War I, and the process that is underway to finalize the NOAA designation.

PA teacher creates curriculum in Versailles for treaty’s 100th anniversary

Megan Kopp

Megan Kopp, a Milton Hershey High School Social Studies in Hershey, PA was one of just a handful of teachers chosen out of hundreds to travel to France through a program by National History Day (NHD). They celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Treaty of Versailles, and each teacher developed a new lesson plan to be used by teachers across the country. The lesson plan will be published by National History Day in the fall. The NHD program is sponsored by the United States World War I Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum and Library.  Click here to read more about Kopp's passion for history, and her family history of military service, including her own, and watch video from a local TV station.

Michigan Military Heritage Museum to open special exhibit on the women who served in World War I

Nellie Dingley

To remember the courage and sacrifice of the exceptional American women who served in World War I, the Michigan Military Heritage Museum, which has a unique collection of WWI Women artifacts, will be presenting a special WWI Women display at its "2019 World War One Day" event on August 10, 2019. The display will feature stories of women like Nellie M. Dingley (left), who joined the U.S. Army Nurse Corps and volunteered to serve in France with the New York Roosevelt Hospital's Mobile Operating Unit.  Click here to read more about Nellie Dingley and the August event at the Michigan Military Heritage Museum.

New Podcast Series Focused on the World War I Paris Peace Process from University College London

UCL logo

University College London (UCL) Institute of Education, friend and partner to the World War I Centennial Commission, has a remarkable new WWI-themed podcast series that is worth checking out. Working with Chrome Radio, Sir Hew Strachan, Simon Bendry and Catriona OliphantI have begun work on a "Peacemaking in Paris" podcast series, in which Hew Strachan reflects on the Paris Peace Conference of 1919 and its legacy. Click here to read more about this new WWI podcast, and find out where you can download the episodes.

Memorial honors Palouse, Idaho soldier lost to war a century past

Lester Dean Hayton Park Sign Palouse, ID

It has been more than a century since the city of Palouse received word that it had lost one of its sons to the world’s first truly global war. Lester Dean Hayton moved to Palouse with his family in 1913, when he was 21. Six years later, Hayton’s family would receive word that he had gone missing in action following the Battle of Chateau-Thierry during World War I, and was presumed dead. On the 100-year anniversary of the notice, Palouse resident Brad Pearce led a memorial on July 15 for the man at the city’s Hayton-Greene Park beneath an iron archway that bears Hayton’s name and that of another of the small town’s fallen — Cpl. William Greene. Click here to read more about this centennial ceremony, why it was important to the community, and plans for future commemorations of the fallen.

Wisconsin teacher honors local World War I veteran during 100th anniversary

Joseph Nowinski

Joseph Nowinski, a social studies teacher at Almond-Bancroft school in Portage County, Wisconsin, was one of 18 teachers nationwide selected to research and deliver a eulogy of a fallen hero in France during the 100th commemoration of World War I this June. That hero was Sylvester Machinski who was born in Wisconsin and fought in World War I. To this day relatives of this hero still live in Portage County. Nowinski was participating in Memorializing the Fallen, a teacher professional development program from National History Day and sponsored by the United States World War I Centennial Commission. Click here to read more about Nowinski's discovery of a hometown hero, and watch video from the local TV station.

Hot Springs Village, Arkansas History Club hears World War I personal story

Edward C. Boehmke

Hot Springs Village resident Dan Boehmke gave a detailed, fascinating presentation about his father’s World War I service, taken from personal letters and other research. His father, Edward C. Boehmke (left), served in a Wisconsin National Guard unit that eventually was sent to Europe in 1918. Edward boarded the SS Tuscania for the trip overseas Jan. 28, 1918. As it neared the Scottish coast, the ship was torpedoed, and 260 troops lost their lives--but Edward survived, albeit losing in the sinking "everything he had with him except for a comb." Click here to read more about about a son's presentation, taken from his father's letters and artifacts, and how that research turned into a book about the family's WWI near miss.

“The instruments of Destiny”: Reception of Iliad in American Great War Poetry

Claire Davis

Claire Davis(left) is a graduate student at the University of Arizona, where she is pursuing her PhD in English literature. Long intrigued by classical reception and Modernism, she conducted research in the Iliad and World War I poetry at her alma mater, Samford University, and presented this research at the 2019 Classical Association of the Midwest and South Conference, and at the Howard Scholars Undergraduate Research fair at Samford. Click here to read her thoughtful essay “The instruments of Destiny: Reception of Iliad in American Great War Poetry," and learn why she concludes that "a close reading of American war poetry before and during the First World War reveals that poets and their audience also found meaning and representation in the classical tradition in works such as the Iliad."

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it's about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New - Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

Sabin Howard with full scale armature for memorial sculpture

Episode #131
Highlights: Monumental Scale!

Host - Theo Mayer

100 Years Ago: Let Me Count The Ways - host | @02:15

A Century In The Making - Sabin Howard | @14:40

Education: NHD WWI History Award Winner - Tim Proskauer | @25:25

Articles & Posts: Weekly Dispatch - Host | @37:45

Doughboy MIA for week of July 15

Robert McClain

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Monday's MIA this week is Private Robert McClain. Born in Rome Georgia in 1898, Robert John McClain enlisted in the Georgia National Guard on 16 July, 1917 at Atlanta and was assigned to Company A, 5th Infantry, GNG, whose duty station was Camp Wheeler, at Macon, Georgia. The year before, this unit had been federalized for duty on the Mexican Border as Company A, 122nd Infantry. Following the declaration of war in 1917, the 122nd had been assigned duty to the 31st ‘Dixie Division’, which would go overseas as a replacement division in September, 1918.

By that time however, Private McClain had already sailed for France aboard the troopship Orduna on 20 June, 1918 as a member of Company #5, Camp Wheeler June Automatic Replacement Draft, which had been drawn from Camp Wheeler trainees. Ten days later he was ‘Over There’, and a week after that, having received some machine gun training while with the 122nd, McClain was assigned to Company B, 150th Machine Gun Battalion, 42nd ‘Rainbow’ Division. He was with them but a short time when, on 28 July, 1918, he was killed in action, having been in France less than a month.

Private McClain is memorialized on the Tablets to the Missing at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery at Belleau Wood. Nothing else is known about his case at this time.

Want to help shed some light on Private McClain’s case? Consider making a donation to Doughboy MIA and help us make a full accounting of the 4,423 American service personnel still listed as missing in action from WW1. Make your tax deductible donation now, with our thanks.

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise


White Ceramic Doughboy Mug

Featuring the iconic Doughboy silhouette flanked by barbed wire so prevalent during WWI, you can enjoy your favorite beverage in this 15-ounce ceramic mug and honor the sacrifices made by U.S. soldiers.  

On December 19, 2014, Congress passed legislation designating Pershing Park in the District of Columbia as the national World War One Memorial.  A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this item are designated for building the Memorial

A Certificate of Authenticity as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial is included.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.

Raymond J. Bobbin

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


Raymond J Bobbin

Submitted by: John Bobbin {Grandson}

Raymond J Bobbin born around 1897. Raymond Bobbin served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1919.

Story of Service


A significant centennial in our human history is upon us. In the second decade of the twentieth century, war on the Western Front in Europe had been sputtering and dragging along through an agonizing and bloody stalemate for several years. In 1918 when the fighting elements of the American Expeditionary Forces began to meaningfully supplement the efforts of the European Allied nations, momentum began to shift in opposition against Germany and its partner nations of the Central Powers.

In a description of one memorable moment while serving in Europe with Battery A of the 107th Field Artillery, 28th Division, Pennsylvania National Guard, one veteran soldier wrote late in his life, before his death in 1981, in scribbly and barely legible handwriting, that he "saw and felt more war on that one day, 10-30-18, than the other 3 months that we on the front [sic] (Aug. 13 - Nov. 11) R."

At that time, one hundred years ago, young Americans, likely many of whom had previously experienced geography extending no further, perhaps, than the environs of their American hometowns, farmlands, schools, shops and factories, shipped out across an unthinkable expanse of ocean. Many were going to the old countries of their immigrant forebears, to undertake an unimaginable challenge. It was a voyage from which many would not return. One among the fortunate who did return was Raymond Bobbin from Shenandoah, Pennsylvania. He reached his twenty-first year of age during his time serving in Europe.

Read Raymond J Bobbin's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

"Pershing" Donors

$5 Million +

Founding Sponsor
PritzkerMML Logo

Starr Foundation Logo

The Lilly Endowment