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DISPATCH: January 8, 2019

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January 8, 2019

January 1, 2019 Memorial Header

"Connecting Vets" radio network features new National World War I Memorial in DC

Entercom Connecting Veterans logo

The Entercom "Connecting Vets.com" radio platform web site put the spotlight on the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC. with an episode that featured the fly-thru video of the memorial design. Click here to view the new Connecting Vets.com page with links to the fly-thru video, and previous coverage of the Memorial as well. Connecting Vets.com has also provided other recent coverage of important United States World War I Centennial Commission projects, with both the Hello Girls Gold Medal initiative, and the Valor Medals Task Force being featured in separate programs.

"American Indians in WWI" site now live

SNRC Shield

A century ago, American Indians went to war for the United States, almost all as volunteers, despite the fact that most were not citizens. To honor and remember their service, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock’s Sequoyah National Research Center (SNRC) has developed the new “American Indians in World War I” section of the United States World War I Centennial Commission web site, which is now live. The section (ww1cc.org/americanindian) commemorates the service of 12,000 American Indians and Alaska Natives who served in the war, both in and out of uniform. The site features articles on all aspects of a soldier’s service and includes a timeline of American Indian history, and a new database of those who served. American Indian women who served as nurses are highlighted in a separate section that includes biographies of each woman. A map of Native American war memorials is also included. Click here to read more about this outstanding new addition to the World War I Centennial Commission web site.

National History Day Selects Eighteen Teachers to Study World War I in Europe

NHD_USWW1CC_Pritzker logos

Eighteen educators from across America have been selected to participate in Memorializing the Fallen — a teacher professional development program from National History Day®. Sponsored by the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum and Library, the program takes educators on the journey of a lifetime to rediscover the history of World War I and invigorate its teaching in America’s classrooms. Throughout the program, teachers attend virtual lectures, participate in discussions, and research a service member who never returned home. In June 2019, the educators will venture to Europe where they will walk in the footsteps of history. Click here to read more about this outstanding, innovative World War I education program.

Collaborative project brings forgotten WWI-era stories to a worldwide audience through Virtual Reality technology

Beeson screen shot

Forgotten stories of World War I are being made available to students nationwide through immersive storytelling technology thanks to a collaborative partnership with Google Expeditions, the Friends of the Victory Memorial, and the West Virginia University Reed College of Media Innovation Center. This project, “WWI Through the Eyes of the Chicago Defender,” brings history to life through virtual reality. The VR project takes viewers on a tour of WWI-era United States as seen through the eyes of the nation’s most influential black weekly newspaper at that time. The project has been commissioned for Google Expeditions, a product that allows teachers to take their classes on virtual field trips, immersing students in experiences that bring abstract concepts to life, brings virtual objects into the classroom, and gives students a deeper understanding of the world beyond the classroom. Click here to read more about this incredible new World War I educational project utilizing 21st Century technology to tell 100 year-old stories.

Connecticut seeks students to help in restoration of World War I American trenches in Seicheprey, France

Christine Pittsley

The Connecticut Heritage Foundation, on behalf of the Connecticut State Library, is hosting an incredible high school education opportunity, “Digging Into History: Trench Restoration In Seicheprey France”. The project is in cooperation with the Communaute de Communes Mad et Moselle, and aims to restore a section of World War I trenches in Seicheprey, France. Student applications are due by January 20, 2019. Project Director Christine Pittsley (left), member of the Connecticut WWI Centennial Committee, and a noted historian and educator, took some time to tell us about her vision for this remarkable hands-on education project. Click here to get all the details about this hands-on history opportunity for students now.

200 Bells: Amazing Armistice Centennial Event hosted by the John J. Morris American Legion Post 62 of Peoria, AZ

Post 62 Bells of Peace

Although the World War I Armistice Centennial took place a few weeks ago, we continue to be amazed by stories that are coming to us from around the country, on local commemorative events that took place to honor our World War I veterans. One such story came to us from our friends at the John J. Morris American Legion Post 62 of Peoria, Arizona, where the Post 62 Auxiliary decided to do something special as part of the World War I Centennial Commission's “Bells of Peace" program. Click here to read what the Post's Public Affairs volunteer Marge Christianson told us about their Bells of Peace event in Arizona.

From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

Dr. Frederick Dickinson on Japan in the Great War


On the World War I Centennial News Podcast, we're taking a look back at some of our favorite segments from 2018. In Episode 84, which aired on August 10th, Professor of Japanese History at the University of Pennsylvania and noted Japan expert Dr. Frederick Dickinson joined the show to elucidate Japan's important but oft-neglected role in the war. Did you know that the Japanese Navy fought U-boats in the Caribbean Sea in WWI? Click here to get more astonishing information in this transcript of the interview.

Kenneth Davis on the Spanish Flu


On the World War I Centennial News Podcast, we're taking a look back at some of our favorite segments from 2018. On Episode 70, which aired on May 4th, author Kenneth Davis joined the show to discuss the deadly pandemic that swept the world in 1918. Click here to learn more about the phenomena that took more lives than the bullets and shells in World War I, in the complete transcript of this interview.

War in the Sky: PTSD Among the Pilots in World War I with Mark Wilkins

Manfred von Richthofen

On the World War I Centennial News Podcast, we're taking a look back at some of our favorite segments from 2018. On Episode 66, which aired on April 4th, historian and aeronautical expert Mark Wilkins joined the show to discuss the prevalence of PTSD in the ranks of WWI pilots and his recent work on the subject of WWI aviation. Did you know that even the most famous World War I pilot, Germany's Manfred von Richthofen (left) -- better known as the Red Baron -- suffered PTSD? Click here to read the entire transcript of the interview, and learn more about how what we think of as a modern scourge of people in combat was first identified in WWI.

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

Toasting in the new year with some french bubbly

Episode 104
Highlights: Favorite Segments of 2018 - Part 2:

Host: Theo Mayer

Part 1 came out last week - the last week of 2018, and here is Part 2 published the first week of 2019.

This episode includes:

  • June 29, Episode #78How WWI Shaped the 20th Century with Dr. Jay Winter |@ 01:10
  • July 20, Episode #81
    A two for One combo…. with WWI War Tech and Speaking WWI both about photography! |@ 07:45
  • August 10, Episode #84
    Japan in WWI with Dr. Frederick Dickinson |@ 13:50
  • In the same episode #84
    The 28th Division: Pennsylvania National Guard doughboys fight from Dr. Edward Lengel |@ 21:35
  • October 5, Episode #92
    The Lost Battalion - with Rob Laplander |@ 27:35
  • November 2, Episode #94
    Maneuverings: Both military and diplomatic with Mike Shuster |@ 34:20
  • November 11, Episode #98
    From World War I Armistice Centennial Day Sacred Service - an excerpt: The Last One Down: Henry Gunther, Written by Matthew Naylor Underscored with The Unanswered Question by Aaron Copeland performed by World War I Centennial Orchestra and read by Dr. Libby O’Connell |@ 38:05
  • December 14th, Episode #101
    Three Key impacts of WWI with historian, Sir Hew Strachan |@ 42:35

Literature in WWI

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Two Years of WWrite in Review! January 2017 - January 2019.

Part 2: African Americans in WWI

Over the month of January, to prepare for the remaining months of the blog, WWrite is publishing a series that will document and synthesize the 100+ blog contributions from January 2017 to January 2019.

This week - Tremendous contributions from African Americans helped win WWI.

Unfortunately, their efforts went unrecognized for almost a century as most of the country refused to acknowledge their service. It is estimated that almost 40,000 African American veterans were denied medals of honor during the war.

The centennial has provided the opportunity to unearth these lost voices, but we still have a long way to go. Read this second installment of the series that only scratches the surface of the rich African American WWI experience.

Fathom encore Jan 21

Encore screenings of Peter Jackson’s “They Shall Not Grow Old” announced by Fathom Events for January 21

Back by popular demand! Fathom Events and Warner Bros. Pictures have partnered to bring Academy Award winner Peter Jackson’s poignant WWI documentary They Shall Not Grow Old to cinemas for an encore presentation on January 21. Applying state-of-the-art restoration, colorization and 3D technologies to century-old footage—carefully chosen from hundreds of hours of original Great War film held in the archives of the Imperial War Museum (IWM)—Jackson has created an intensely gripping, immersive and authentic cinematic experience. The only narration comes from Great War veterans themselves, selected from over 600 hours of BBC and IWM archive interviews, resulting in a gripping account of “The War to End All Wars,” told by the soldiers who experienced it. The Fathom Events showings of They Shall Not Grow Old in December sold out quickly. Tickets for this encore January screening will be available soon at FathomEvents.com and participating theater box offices.

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Coin Display

Mint Commemorative Coin Display

The US Mint stopped selling the World War I Commemorative Coin on December 27, but you can still purchase the limited edition silver dollar in combination with our specially-designed display stand, personalized with information about your WWI ancestor, from the Centennial Official Merchandise store. This package makes a great collectible gift for family members and descendants of those who served in World War I. Personalization can include: rank, full name, enlisted date, deceased date, unit/decorations, battles, cemetery, etc. If you already purchased the Commemorative Coin from the US Mint, you can order just the personalized display. Both the combo set and display alone are available at here. Supplies are limited.  And remember: proceeds from the sale of this item go towards funding the building of the National World War One Memorial in Washington DC.

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

Double Donation Tanks new

Archie Henry Thomas

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


Archie Henry Thomas


Submitted by: Gregory Neifeld {Great-Grandson}

Archie Henry Thomas born around 1885. Archie Thomas served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1909 and the service was completed in 1925.

Story of Service

Between April and September 1916, Archie was stationed on the Mexican border in California with the Oregon Third Infantry Regiment, Company I during the Mexican Border War. His regiment was activated into federal service after Pancho Villa’s raid in Columbus, New Mexico.

While on the border, Archie was promoted to Corporal in July 1916 and he was promoted to Sergeant before his return to Oregon in September.

This was an era in which the U.S.-Mexico border was perceived as a potential location for a German-funded invasion by Mexico. Border service went into effect when this threat was exposed by the British interception of the Zimmerman Telegram. This message discussed Germany's alliance proposal for Mexico if the U.S. entered the European war against Germany.

The onset of American involvement in World War I prompted all National Guard regiments to reactivate under federal service. This activation included the Oregon Third Infantry Regiment in March 1917. In July 1917, the unit was mustered at Camp Withycombe, Oregon and transferred to Camp Greene, North Carolina for training.

Read Archie Henry Thomas's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.

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