Kansas WW1

Commemorating the First World War Centennial in Kansas

Category: Research & Histories (page 2 of 61)

The Sgt. York Site Controversy Continues

In my post of October 12th last I covered the story of Sgt. Alvin York. You can read the article here.

The controversy about the actual site where York engaged the Germans is between a group called ‘The Sgt. York Discovery Expedition’, which was led by newly-elected Pennsylvania State Senator and U.S. Army Col. (Ret.) Douglas Mastriano, and ‘The Sgt. York Project’ led by Thomas Nolan Ph.D. from Middle Tennessee State University. ...read more

Tony Wilding, the First Tennis Superstar

Wilding in an RNAS armored car towing a 47 mm gun

Capt. Anthony F.  “Tony” Wilding (1883-1915) was a New Zealander who was the greatest tennis player of his generation – over a hundred years later he still holds a number of singles records including the most titles won in one season (23 in 1906). He was a 1905 Cambridge graduate and motivated by a strong sense of duty (with the assistance of the First Lord of the Admiralty Winston Churchill), in October, 1914 he was commissioned as a Royal Marine artillery officer. He was briefly seconded to the newly-formed Intelligence Corps, then he joined the Duke of Westminster’s Royal Naval Air Service Armored Car Detachment. On May 9th, 1915, while assisting artillery, he was killed by accurate German counter battery fire at Aubers Ridge in Artois, France. ...read more

The 353rd ‘All Kansas’ Infantry Comes Home

After the Armistice, the 353rd ‘All Kansas’ Infantry Regiment, of the 89th ‘Rolling W’ Division, spent nearly five tiresome months on occupation duty along the Rhine River near Coblenz, Germany. In case you need to brush up on the story of the 353rd Infantry, you can start by clicking here. ...read more

Mother’s Day and WWI

It’s a couple of days late, but TIME Magazine posted an article regarding the influence World War I had on Mother’s Day. Use the link below to get to the story:

http://time.com/5585264/mothers-day-origins-military/

The Madison Square Victory Arch

Madison Square is a park located at Fifth Ave. and 23RD St. in mid-town Manhattan. From 1879 until 1925 the arena still known as Madison Square Garden was located there. And in the last months of 1918 it was decided to build a victory arch there, too, an American Arc de Triomphe. However, there was insufficient time to build a permanent structure before the New York boys came home in 1919, so the arch was constructed of wood and plaster instead. You can read the whole story here. ...read more

The USS Recruit

In the summer of 1917 the Navy constructed a mock-up of a modern battleship in the middle of Union Square Park (Broadway between E. 14th and E. 17th Streets), which sits at the point in Manhattan where downtown ends and midtown begins. Made entirely of wooden materials, this “landship” wasn’t a replica or a model, as it was about 1/3rd the length of a modern battleship and half the width. Built only from the waterline up, the structure did have a complete topside, with several turrets and batteries of replica guns, the bridge, a wireless station, officer’s quarters and two cage masts for look outs and gunnery observation. Finished in September, the structure was named the ‘USS Recruit’, and was manned by a ‘crew’ of 40 officers and trainees on rotation from the Newport, RI Naval Station. ...read more

American Armored Cars

1914 Belgian Minerva Armored Car in Tsarist Livery

Armored cars were tried in the early years of WW1 but were unable to navigate the rough, battle-scarred terrain of the Western Front; in particular they couldn’t cross trenches or break through obstacles.

The American experience with armored cars began on March 18th, 1916, when the 1st Armored Motor Battery, commanded by Captain Harry C. Montgomery, was activated in the New York National Guard. The original 93 volunteers were assembled in the 22nd Engineer Regiment Armory at Fort Washington Avenue on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. ...read more

OMG = Oh My God!

This abbreviation, now part of the popular vernacular, was used by Admiral of the Fleet John A. (Jackie) Fisher (1841 – 1920), 1st Baron Fisher, in a letter written to The Hon. Winston Churchill MP. These two were close friends and frequent correspondents; Lord Fisher was the First Sea Lord from 1904 to 1910 and also from 1914 to 1915, while Churchill was the First Lord of the Admiralty from 1911 to 1915. You can read about this here. ...read more

MI-6 created in 1914

Although there had been various unorganized (and sometimes unofficial) intelligence activities prior to 1873, in that year the original British Intelligence Branch was established, in the Quartermaster General’s Department, with a staff of seven military officers serving under Gen. Sir Henry Brackenbury (1837 – 1914). By 1899 the staff had increased to 13 officers and in 1904 it was transferred to the War Office under the Directorate of Operations. ...read more

Post-war Western Front Humor

This is a U.S. Army Signal Corps photograph taken some time in December, 1918 at Virton, Belgium, which is about 20 miles east of Stenay, France where the 353rd ‘All Kansas’ Infantry was situated in the Armistice line of Nov. 11th. The object to the right of the ‘scarecrow’ may be an unused Stielhandgranate anti-personnel grenade, which may show the casual attitude of the soldiers towards danger. ...read more

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