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William George HALLETT
Pvt. 1st Class, 332nd Inf., Co. "K"

Submitted by Sue Miller, granddaughter of William G. Hallett

Hallett 332 ohiosoldiers v7



WilliamGeorgeHALLETT 1William George Hallett
, (my grandfather), born 19 March, 1895 in Brisbane, Australia, the son of a Merchant Marine in England (George William Hallett) and a governess (Ann Mitchell Hallett), had the value of patriotic duty instilled in him at an early age. Growing up on a sheep station in Australia (land-granted to his parents by Queen Victoria) gave him a keen understanding of hard work, survival in rough conditions and the challenges of making a life in this world.

George and Ann emigrated with William and his two younger sisters to the U.S. after 13 years on the sheep station in Australia and settled in western Pennsylvania, where George found work in the coal mines. Black lung disease took his life and Ann relocated the family to Ohio, settling in Warren.

William would forever call Warren, Ohio his home, married his sweetheart Josephine Kuhn there, raised a daughter, Joan, and used his design and mechanical skills to establish a career in a Tool & Die company, advancing to Shop Foreman. He had a spotless workshop and created many of his own tools.

William’s service and experiences with the 332nd Infantry, were recorded in very small journals in quick, sometimes short-handed entries. Through these journaled notes and the few conversations I had with my grandfather about his time overseas, I learned that he was honored to have served his country, but also “saw things no one should ever see”. He was a very peaceful man and I believe his early exposure to the violence of war shaped him dramatically. He loved spending time in Nature and working in his large and beautiful garden and passed his appreciation of life and the outdoors onto my brother and I, a tremendous gift, that we now share with our grandchildren.

William George Hallett 1919 resizedWilliam George Hallett 1919
Company K – 332nd Infantry
American Expeditionary Force in Italy
   HALLETT Grandpa on left WWI
William Hallett
on left

Grandpa rarely spoke of his time in the Army but when pressed would answer a few questions. He was a runner and took messages from foxhole to foxhole and would joke that he really couldn’t run that fast before the war, but learned quickly how to run a lot faster!

In his own words, here are a few excerpts from his journals*. {Note: I have transcribed the journal notes as they are, not changing spelling, punctuation, etc.} [*My blog/story about William will have all of his journal entries for view when that project is completed. www.anniesboy.blogspot]

April 1, 1918
Left home for Camp Sherman about 9 oclock and landed in camp at 7 oclock at night and my i sure did rain wet to the skin.
April 2. Woke up with the bugle first morning and playing your in the army now and got clothes.

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May 18. Started out to the range again and pitched tents.
May 19. Went through battle fire and know how it is done.
May 20. Came back and learned we was booked for oversea. Gas mask instruction.
May 21. Inspection and check of stuff to see and went through gas chamber if you had everything.

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May 30. Drilled some and hair cut short.
May 31. Drilled some and check.
June 1. Just about set to go over sea.
June 2. final check of all stuff.
June 3. Put me in kitchen for losing slicker and came to find out I found it again but go to the kitchen.
June 4. Up to kitchen for me.
June 5. Pack every thing and ready to go.
June 6. Took train for peir. took ferry across Hudson River and got on the ship.
June 7. Gee it sure is some ship. The Aquitania Liverpool English boat and like a castle. 2th largest afloat……seen the Carpathia the one that recused the people off the Titantic laying in port.
June 8. Left New York Sat. morning at 8 oclock. Life belts on all the ways across and bid the old girl goodbye.
June 9. Weather very nice.

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June 14. Coming close to shore for you can see all kinds of signs.
June 15. Saw Liverpool in morning and landed and rushed to a station and board a train and some small trains and on our Gods known where.
June 16. And travel all day and hit southg Hampton and went a reast camp in England and stayed the reast of the night.
June 17. Started for a boat to cross the English Channel and landed in the war stricken France in Le Harve.
June 18. Hiked to rest camp and stayed there all day.
June 19. Entrain for regeoin farter in France.

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we saw the English coast and landed at Liverpool and the June 15 and traveled to soumptom on rail all day the 16th and rested a day in the Rest Camp and marched to a onother camp and left and crossed the English Channel Sunday the 16th and landed in France the 17th and stayed in a rest camp til June the 19th for London and marched to Donnemarie and landed 21th at 12:30 and stayed till Friday July the 26th about 3 oclock and started for Toulan and the march about 12 miles and landed in box cars and was sure some ride through the alps and into Italy about 3 days and stopped in a small town and pradored around the streets and gave us some good coffee and cigaretes and showed us a good time to what France was

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July 9. On guard at 4 oclock down main street.
July 10. Off guard at 4 oclock.
July 11. took annual regiment hike and some hike.
July 12. Drill same old stuff and some rouner of going to Italy.
July 13. Inpection and loaf.
July 14. Hoilday and my some heat.
July 15. Kitchen and hard work.
July 16. Took hike and Inspection and Maunee and no water.
July 17. Drill some more.
July 18. Took Regement hike and was running and my some heat and no water.
July 19. Drill 10 hours and some heat.
July 20. inspection of rifle and quarter.
July 21. Hoilday.
July 22. Drill and expedition orders for Italy anytime.
July 23. Orders came to pack barracks bags and was glad to leave old France.

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July 29. Landed in Villa Di France and a small sstayed in a silk shop and some plance and missed guard but on detail.
July 30. Getting ready for parade and some hard work and some crummy place to stay.
May 31. All sprused up for parade clothes pressed to took us out parade ground and tried out.
Aug. 1 The big day and hard day for us we stood before the king and most all respenties of every country and they looked us over and then pass review and some hot but we went thought with it all right and they gave us credit for what we did and let us lay around all next day.
Aug 2. the town was ours but there was nothing in it only lots of good beer.

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Left Treviso Oct 28 about 10 o’clock at night and hiked till early in the morning and halted back of the Piaval front and though we were going into action for we could hear lots of action but pulled in to a feild and camped the 29th 30th and left the morning of the 31th and we sure saw some sights of no man’s land and lots of them that done their bit and shells and some hard going for they had the Austrains on the run and we crossed the Paival and traveled well into the night and camped in a feild for the night but next morning we were up and at them again as hard as ever and travel all that day and light in a field away from all human being and Austrains but they told us there was lots of them around us but the only kind that was tere was these that talk no more and there sure was some sights believe for we had went though some things and had see some where they had made their last stand and had tried hard but lost and horses they had killed and eaten and the people sure was glad to see us but that did not help us for we were hard after them and living on bully beef and hard tack and sleeping on corn husks and any thing we could get a hold of and after them the 3 of November and we caught up to them and that night was a night for 2 patoons of us crawled over the Sdeintro River took off our clothes to the hike and waded across 4 small streams of that cold water and pretty near froze to death but that all goes in with the game and we had a talk with the Austrains and they said there was a armstice on but the 2 sec Battalion went after them and put th to pieces well that was some night after we bagan to reziles what we went though for they could blowed us to pieces the way we were ….

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and thanks to God but the next was we turned our eyes to home but Gods knows when and the morning of the 18 of Nov we entrain for fumie and it sure was a cold trip up in the mountains and we landed the 19th about 7 oclock and it sure was some town for we were starved and tired when we lit there but she sure cheer the boys up for this is some twon every thing you want but afly high but coming down. and they sure treate the boys fine

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the English are with us so we have some one to talk to and it sure seems good to hear some talk our own language.

About the 21 the Italian’s took us up on the mountains as a protection for them and now we have to go up levering once in a while we were up the 25th of November and Dec 1 1918 and we have to hike through the mountain every day on this mountain we guard there is a castle where napoleon has a bed and a prison where they used to sit them on red hot chairs for they are still there cannons and tunnels and the place where Pontuis starved his wife and where a couple of Princess buried

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Dec 9 2 hours of drill and then street fights and some Americans were in it for they could not see a women insulted so they took her part and then confaided to quarters for I thought something was doing we were called to arms but did not amount to nothing.

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Dec 16 Took a meal on the hill and went to a big show the fellows pulled off in the Teatro Fenice Fiume and it sure was good they pulled off some good jokes on Col Wallace.

Dec 17. a wet day drilled inside and then went to the show the YMCA gave in the same building it was fine.

Dec 18. Company on guard so we drilled a little around the building and went the show the English gave in the same place and the Brigham ship came in went down to see it but could not get on board.

HALLETT Fiume Theatro 1914postcard in William Hallett’s scrapbook
Fiumo Theatro - 1914

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HALLET Fiume Molo Adamichpostcard from William Hallett collection
Fiume Molo Adamich

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Dec 24 Wet Day and took a hike and at 6 oclock we got chris pagage and sure was good for I was broke and that candy came in Handy.

Dec 25 Christmas went up to the hall and decoated the hall and then went to dinner and some dinner and speeches and went down to the boat for supper and had a good supper a Merry Christmas as could be possible in this country and turkey and potatoes and good thing

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Dec 30. Hike and went to show the sailors gave the USS Birmingham Minstrels.

Dec 31 rained and layed around boat so goodbye 1918
and better eats American rations

JAN 1 1919

Hello 1919 Hoiday and training around the mountain

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JAN 5 1919

Sunday and on K.P. all day.
and first white Bread since we landed in Italy
took a long hike up in Mts and went to an English boxing match

JAN 7 1919

Took short hike in Mts and rough sea.

JAN 8 1919

Took hike and a bath and loafed around.

JAN 9 1919

Took hike and same old stuff

Taken at Dinner 9 Jan 1919 William George Hallett“Taken at Dinner. Jan 9, 1919”
William G. Hallett standing, 6th from the right.
postcard photo from William Hallett collection

Jan 24 Stayed in quarters and went to show in after noon American show and was good from nuts to chow.

Jan 25. Stayed in quarter a bunk inspection by Lt Cornel Everson

Jan 26 Stayed in quarter and holiday.

Jan 27 on Wood detail and rain and snow.

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HALLETT knifeWilliam Hallett knife

Feb 9 Hoilday and broke good news to us about going home and at 4 30 Memoril to Roosevelt and talk by chaplin.

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Feb 12 packed barracks bags fill out with packs at 10.30 oclock and went to station and had a good farewell and layed around the station till 5 20 and left Fuime and traveled all night and cold thought Mt.

Feb 13 Traveled thought some of Mts and old battle feild.

Feb 14 Still traveling and getting down in Italy again.

Feb 15 Landed in Genoa at 9 30 and marched to hotel and found some swell beds and some hotel believe best ever.

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Feb 22 Washington Birth day and holiday and went though Columbus Home and some old place Rain.

Feb 23. Rain and went though the Kings palace and two arts buildings.

Feb 24 Rain and took us though the palace again.

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Mar 15 Bunk and rifle inspection and heard we was going first Battalions first.

Mar 16 Sunday and Hoilday.

Mar 17. A Short hike and then reast.

Mar 18 Took our morning drill.

Mar 19 Took hike and bunk inspection and Coleral told us orders were called off and first Battalion did not sail.

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March 27 Started to drill and rained a little and was going on Guard and called off for we got news we going home and had to get ready. Packed our barracks bay and all happy.

March 28. Rolled packs and went aboard ship and sailed at 6.00 oclock.

March 29 Rough seas and landed at Marseillais France on the Canopie at 10,00 oclock and was kind of sisk. Layed in France till 6 oclock and started again for Gibraltar
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April 2 Layed in Gib and pulled in for coal about 3 00 oclock

April 3 Started to coal and went ashore on hike on the rock.

April 4. Coaled all day and all night.

April 5 Started at 8 oclock in the morning and going good

April 6. Got pretty rough and I got pretty sick.

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April 11 felt better and ate chicken and lots better.

April 12. felt good and still traveling along.

April 13 More chicken and feel good.

April 14 Good old New York anchored outside.

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April 15 Pulled in about 10 oclock and sure was some welcome Good eats candy and cigaetts and got on Ferry about 12 oclock …. got on train and came to Camp Merrit about 3’30 oclock and my she sure is great to be in Gods country once again and sleep in billets.
I went though Deliche Machine that night.

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April 21 Started for N Y at 6.30 and crossed on Ferry the hudson and landed and praded 5 miles in front of about 100.000 people and then took us in the subway to the Armory and gave us a good meal and much needed reast and crossed the Ferry and come back to Camp and sure was some day some good sights though it was tough on us

April 22. Drilled a little in the Morning and thought we were going to leave but not.

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April 27 landed in Sherman about 9 bells and put in depot billets two billets from where I first trained, and got pass to Chilichote and had good time

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May 3 Turned in blankets and mess pan and all set to go.

HALLETT uniform3

HALLETT 2

HALLETT dogtag

HALLETT medal1 2

In back of William Hallett’s diary, hand-written:

“For every hour of sorrow youve had

Youll have a year in which to be glad.

You were not born in vain.

for you will bloom again.

And tho they’ve taken all your sunshine and dew

We will make a amercain beauty of you will

And you find repose

over here My Belgium Rose”

From page titled General Orders:

1. To take charge of this post and Government property in view.

2. To walk my post in miliraty manner keeping always on the alert and observing everything that takes place within sight or hearing.

3. To report all voilations of orders I am instructed to enforce.

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