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Northern Illinois University in the First World War

 Northern Illinois University students raise Funds to support war effort

In 1917, Northern students set a $1,500 goal for the Student Friendship Fund to aid the forty-seven Northern boys headed off war. They surpassed their goal by raising $1,863.25. Students and faculty also regularly raised money for the Red Cross. In fact, they were so dedicated to help fund the war effort that students decided to forego publishing a 1918 Norther, the official yearbook, and instead used the money to purchase an ambulance for use in France to aid the troops.

 

niu Northern IllinoisSenior Number1918
Cover of The Northern Illinois Senior Number, the reduced yearbook produced in 1918 instead of the official Norther


niu Norther1919 pg53 NortherAmbulance
1919 Norther entry about the Norther Ambulance


World War I Service Flag

Double-sided WWI service flag created by Northern Illinois University (then known as Northern Illinois State Normal School) to honor the service of its students. Work on the flag began in 1917 and was completed in 1919. The 121 stars on the flag represent the students who served in WWI. On the back of the flag you will see 4 gold stars clustered together. After further research, it was discovered these stars represented four students who lost their lives during service: Howard Byers, Martin Chase, Clinton Glidden, and Wendell Lindberg.

niu ua11b11item19 WW1ServiceFlag front
Obverse

niu ua11b11item19 WW1ServiceFlag back
Reverse; includes four gold stars to represent those killed in action



Presentation of the WWI Service Flag created by the University in the auditorium of Altgeld Hall, the first and most central building on campus.



niu qrp5.013AltgeldAuditorium Flagscirca1919 

Altgeld Hall, Interior Auditorium, 1917 "N. I. [Northern Illinois] Auditorium decorated for the Memorial Day Program honoring N. I. boys who entered the Service. Note Service Flag at rear right."


These images are issued by the Regional History Center/University Archives of Northern Illinois University. Property rights in the collection belong to the Regional History Center; literary rights are dedicated to the public. The user is responsible for copyright issues. Permission for use of this image for ANY reason other than educational purposes should be obtained by contacting the Center’s staff. Credit line should read Regional History Center, Northern Illinois University.

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