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  1. #1
    Really Senior Member HOOKED ON HISTORY's Avatar
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    1903 & Armistice Day Tribute

    My small tribute to my Grandfather and all those who served in WWI whose end will be remembered for the 100th time on November 11 2018.
    "The War End All Wars" unfortunately H.G. Wells missed the mark on that one.
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    I've posted him here before, here's Great uncle Leslie. KIA Vimy Ridge 12 Apr 1917. My mother's uncle.
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    Regards, Jim

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    Fitting tribute indeed.
    I recently finished the book on Vimy by Pierre Berton. He paints a vivid picture of the brutality of trench warfare.
    Heck of a slog, and finally victory by the Canadianicon troops.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pickax View Post
    the book on Vimy by Pierre Berton.
    Yes, I have that one. It has a couple of things wrong...Lots of first hand stories though.
    Regards, Jim

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    My granddad, SGT Harry Ware. 2nd. Battalion, East Yorkshire Regiment. An Irishman from Waterford. Sorry for the small photo.

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    I was hoping I could finish the rifle before November 11 and cut it a bit close. The photo and the hat band are all I have of grandfathers WWI service.
    Quartermaster colors on the had chord. I never knew him as he was gone shortly after my entry but I hope to keep his memory alive for the next generation with these items.
    Thanks to the others have shared there photos, was hoping for that. Perhaps others will chip in as the day approaches.

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    BEAR,
    Strange how so many Irishmen came over to "fight the good fight" on Britains behlaf after what they were about to go through to.

    Jim,
    VIMY Ridge.............an amazing place if you have never been before. Corners of trench systems concreted because they were less than 30 feet from the opposing Germanicon Concreted pill box. The throwing of grenades must have been a daily occurrence.
    A great monument to all those that died there and complimented by the Canadianicon school kids who learn and pass on to visitors what happened there, who are on a two year secondment................brilliant mate!
    Last edited by Gil Boyd; 11-06-2018 at 02:06 PM.
    'Tonight my men and I have been through hell and back again, but the look on your faces when we let you out of the hall - we'd do it all again tomorrow.' Major Chris Keeble's words to Goose Green villagers on 29th May 1982 - 2 PARA

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gil Boyd View Post
    Corners of trench systems concreted because they were less than 30 feet from the opposing Germanicon Concreted pill box
    You can look from Google Earth from above and see the old trenches that were filled a hundred years ago and still show clearly.
    Regards, Jim

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    Can't find Grandpa's pic anymore in his uniform but I do still have the dogtag he gave me. It was years later that I found he was in the Signal Corps at the Muese Argonne (sp?) Where his actions resulted in the equivalent of the Purple Heart and the Silver Star. He was a cantankerous old so and so especially when he was looking for the bottom of a bottle but I'm proud of him.



    Pvt. William John DayHuff {R.I.P.}

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    My Father and his Victoy Medal
    Imgur: The magic of the Internet
    Imgur: The magic of the Internet (My father on extreme right)
    On 11/11/1918 He was in the Argonne
    Ramblings of an Old Man
    7 July 2018
    On PBS I just watched a three part documentary on the Word War (or the Great War as PBS entitled it and later generations know it as WWI). It just occurred to me that there are no survivors of the AEF (American Expeditionary Force) and I wondered how many are still alive that knew any of those who served in the AEF. I consider myself to be very fortunate for my father served in the AEF and has three bars on his Victory Medal. I can remember him telling me stories about his time in France. He was very active in the American Legion and participated in many Legion activities so I met and knew other AEF vets. Quite an interesting time for a teenager. As you might suspect this created a knowledge and interest in the Great War. When the US federalized the National Guard during WWII, this left the states with no militia. I lived in the state of Mississippi , and the state organized the Mississippi State Guard (MSG).
    The MSG was composed of WWI vets, those not in service, and some select teenagers. I enlisted on 7/7/43 at the age of sixteen. I rose to the rank of sergeant 12/22/43. My company commanded was Captain Glen H Eubank and my First Sergeant was Albert G. Sledge, both of whom had served with my father in WWI. The company received limited infantry and riot control training at Camp Shelby, MS in 1944. I got to know a lot of the AEF vets, one of whom (Coy Anderson) was a machine gunner who was gassed in the Argonne. I stayed with the MSG until completion of my junior year in high school, When I enlisted in the USN at the age of seventeen.
    My father enlisted in the Mississippi National Guard on 3 March 1917, one month prior to our entry into the World War. His unit was federalized on 28 June 1917 and he was assigned to Camp Beauregard at Alexandria Louisiana. Most of his records were lost in the NPR fire of 1978. I managed to get possession of and retain some key documentation. At one time he had an entire filing cabinet filled with documentation but my younger brother retained that and it was lost in the hurricane Katrina. I managed to retain several key documents such as:
    1. His Discharge
    2. Extract from his discharge for issuance of his Victory Medal
    3. His military evaluation dated July 20 1918
    4. His immunization Record
    5. Copies of various orders while he served in France
    I wanted to give the background for the incident that I am about to relate.
    On to the Story
    The PBS series showed how unprepared we were to enter the World War. That is quite common knowledge so I shall not reiterate it here. General Pershing resisted all efforts by the Britishicon and the Frenchicon to introduce American Troops into the front lines piece meal. It was not until the Belleau Wood and Chateau Thierry, than US troops engaged the Germans as a US Force. During 1917 and early 1918, Pershing insisted that his troops remain intact as a US Army and receive training from the British and the French - primarily the French in the vicinity of Verdun. The first major offensive action was the reduction of the St. Mehiel salient . It was here that the American army received its baptism of fire. Casualties were significant and American generals were introduced into the realities of World War.
    The next offensive was into the Argonne Forrest. Fighting was difficult and casualties were high. (A total of 26000 KIA) General Pershing was so distraught over casualty levels that he reorganized and turned the field management of the Argonne campaign over to the generals commanding the First (Gen. Hunter Liggett) and Second Army (LtGen. Robert L. Bullard).
    One would expect that by this time-late 1918 , American forces arriving in France would be well trained and well equipped. Such was not the case. It was pointed out in the PBS Special, one army private arrived in the RTC (Replacement Training Center) just five weeks after being drafted. He was poorly trained and had no equipment. This was the first documented corroboration of my fathers story
    By this time my father had been transferred into the 26th Division , a water providing organization designed to set up facilities for furnishing water to troops and horses. There were many horses on the WWI battlefields and water was an important requirement. He served in this capacity throughout the St. Mehiel campaign. In October he was transferred to command the Provisional Water Train at CLERMONT-en-ARGONNE to provide similar services. On 3 November he was assigned to Chief of Engineers First Army, followed by orders on 4 November tnsferreding him to Headquarters at Gievres France.
    At Gievres he found that he had been assigned to a RTC (Replacement Training Center) , where his job was to form a company of new arrivals into a company for use at the front. The casualties at the Argonne had been so high that replacements were badly needed. When he pointed out that he was a water supply engineer and not an infantryman , the colonel indicated that he had received extensive training at Camp Beauregard, and had been issued a rifle, therefore he was consider qualified. He was assigned a casual company of approximately 100 men and to be prepared to move into the Argonne on the tenth of November.
    A survey of his assigned organization showed that these men had no equipment and were poorly trained. He rounded up a couple of sergeants. and they managed to find rifles, ammo belts, ammo, gas masks and helmets-mostly battlefield salvage. They taught the men how to load their rifles (M1917's) and let them shoot a few rounds. Some had never held or fired a rifle. They gave them some elementary bayonet training, i.e. how to mount it on the rifle and some elementary thrusting techniques. They also showed them how to use their gas masks. As the stamps on the orders show, they moved out on 9 November Only the original orders were stamped, (see the upper left stamp on the Firdt Army orders) arriving at the Argonne on 10 November and were scheduled to enter the line on 11 November. Fortunately that never happened, and my father reverted back to the 26th Engineers with whom he stayed until his return to the USAicon in 1919.

    History always has a way of repeating itself. A review of the casualties, the training of replacements, and the fighting in the Hurtgen Forrest in Germanyicon in 1944 practically duplicates the fighting in the Argonne in 1918.
    There was much censorship during the World War. A truism is that: "The first casualty of war is -THE TRUTH". The Sedition Act of 1917 put an end to free speech in this country during the World War. The First Army orders (attached) which sent my father to the Argonne ,are stamped 11/9/1918 without a destination because the army did not want to publicize this action.
    For once the Military History Channel did a pretty good job. I spotted a couple of errors but one would have to have a sharp eye and knowledge. Some British film was presented as US but the British helmets, while they look alike, are different from the American helmets. The Muzzle of the SMLE British rifle is very distinctive, and can be used to distinguish between British and American troops. Like wise some, footage showed US troops from WWII. The muzzle of the M1 rifle is very distinct, so that it is easy to recognize this error.
    That of course was the WAR to End Wars Unfortunately that was not true as my service in four subsequent wars show.
    WWII - USN Cruisers ETO
    Korea USAF -B-26s Low Level night attack
    USAF Cold War- N/B on nuclear capable B47s SAC (The tip pf the spear. There was no Nuclear Triad then)
    Nam -Cruise on USS Kitty Hawk during mining Haiphong 1972 (Tech Rep supporting A7E)
    FWIW




    .
    Last edited by Cosine26; 11-08-2018 at 08:17 PM.

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