Category Archives: WWI, Second HOT Log 1/22/18

Sergeant Stubby

Sergeant Stubby was the official mascot of the 102nd regiment. Stubby was a dog that “served” for 18 months and was involved in or around 17 different battles in Europe. Some of the things that he did were detect mustard gas and comfort wounded soldiers. He was also able to detect incoming artillery fire because he could hear the whine of the incoming shells before the soldiers.

440px-Sergeant_StubbyThe 102nd regiment is one of the most famous of the United States from WWI. Many of the members were from Connecticut as the regiment was New England based. They were involved in the first action that the United States was a part of in WWI, which took place in Seicheprey.

Stubby was originally found on Yale’s campus in the summer of 1917, where the 102nd regiment happened to be training. The dog hung around the soldiers and one soldier (Robert Conroy) liked him so he snuck him on board the ship heading for Europe. Eventually, one of the higher-ups found Stubby. Rumor has it when this happened, Stubby saluted and the man took a liking to Stubby and let him stay.

Stubby was injured two times during the war but both times he recovered. Stubby had numerous war-time achievements that ultimately led to medals. Stubby was known for hating Germans and it is said that he had to be held back and restrained whenever German prisoners of war were nearby. There is a famous instance where Stubby helped capture a German spy. The spy was sitting out in no-man’s land and Stubby found him and began to furiously drag him back to the allied lines. A very impressive feat for a dog of his size! This led to Stubby’s “promotion” to Sergeant. Stubby was highly celebrated following the war and went on to receive a Gold Medal from the Humane Education Society.

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Suffield In WWI

In WWI Connecticut had many successful people enter the war effort. Specifically, our town of Suffield has four registered soldiers that were in the 102nd regiment. We tweeted @mozactly, a professor who is investigating CT’s involvement in WWI. She replied by sending us information on the people in WWI from Suffield. This was very useful to us and one, in particular, was Harry M, Convery.

Mr. Convery was born on August 20, 1884, in New York. At an early age, he moved to Suffield CT, where he lived the rest of his life. Prior to entering the war, he was single and worked on a farm for the Kullie family. It is not known if Mr. Convery wanted to go to war or not, but once president Wilson implemented the Selective Service Act men between the ages of twenty-one to thirty had to register and possibly be called upon to go fight in the war. This must have a very anxious time for people selected to fight in the war. Most of these people have never held a gun and before they know it they are off to use guns regularly. Going into this blood bath of a war was not easy and these young troops had the right to be nervous.

With all of this preparation toward war, Mr. Convery was soon required to make his draft card and was eventually chosen to take part in the war. We found his draft card that everyone had to fill out before going to war. He was a medium sized man and had blond hair and blue eyes. Once in the war, he was given the rank of private. It is not known exactly what role he played in this war, but we do know that people from our small town served in The Great War. A possible avenue would be to try and find more information on his war efforts. There possibly could have been someone we have not found yet that played a large role in the war. We are assuming that this information is true; however, we can not know for sure. The way I could do this would be to contact the Suffield or Connecticut library and ask if they have any more records. I could also tweet at Professor Gil again or #CTUntold. Maybe they will have some more information on Mr. Convery in war or more names of troops from the war.

Mr. Convery was not killed in combat but rather lived a long life. He died in 1989 at the age of ninety-seven. I want to dig deeper and see if there were any additional people who participated in the war.

Screen Shot 2018-01-18 at 7.18.36 PM.png*This is Mr. Convery’s draft card from WWI. It gives some information as to who he was prior to the war.

Screen Shot 2018-01-18 at 7.07.01 PM

* This is the questionnaire that Mr. Convery was required to fill our as well as the draft card. We can see his religion, his marriage status and his employment.

Sources:

  • Ancestry. com: Ancestry provided me with multiple documents on this man’s life and is my main source I can use. This site provide people with information that is lost or not available to the public.
  • Twitter: Twitter provided me with the opportunity to connect with other professionals in the field of WWI history. It is how I located the information on the people from Suffield in WWI.

Stopping the Elusive Germans On the Homefront

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Secret Service agents walking aside President Woodrow Wilson

I continue to explore the role of federal agencies in stopping pro-German attacks against the United States during the war. The Secret Service was crucial in stopping German spies from roaming around the United States and collecting information. In one case, a Secret Service agent was tailing a known German spy, and the spy had a left a briefcase on a bus. This briefcase was opened and contained many documents showing Germany’s efforts to stop America’s support to the Allies. The Secret Service played a vital role in finding German spies and foiling their plans against the United States.

The Bureau of Investigations (later known as the FBI) worked on many aspects including citizens antiwar sentiments. During the start of the war, they were told to keep their investigations into Germans limited because of the federal laws at the time. This changed through the years of 1914-1917 as the U.S. was getting ready to enter the war. They were involved in a few German cases including one in 1914 where there was a ring that was trying to obtain passports for German reservists that were in the U.S. when the war started. There was another case in 1915 where there was a plot to blow up the Welland Canal, which was a critical shipping point between Lake Erie and Ontario. The Bureau was able to break up this plot and arrested several people connected to the plot. They were also able to connect one of the men to the earlier documents from the Secret Service case with the briefcase. During the early years of the war, there were many sabotage attempts against British-owned firms and factories that supplied ammunition to Britain and Russia that were broken up by the Bureau of Investigations.  In 1916, the Bureau of Investigations officially began a counterintelligence policy.

These early efforts that the Secret Service and Bureau of Investigations unfolded showed Germany’s plots against the U.S. and was a contributing factor in convincing the United States to enter the War. Now that the United States has entered the war, I am going to dig deeper to see what the Secret Service and Bureau of Investigations did inside of the United States during the war. My plan will be to contact the FBI to find more information on their role during WWI.

Sources:

https://www.fbi.gov/news/stories/the-bureaus-role-during-early-world-war-i-years

This source comes directly from the FBI, which means it is a reliable source for information on the early years of the FBI during World War I.

 

https://www.cia.gov/kids-page/6-12th-grade/operation-history/history-of-american-intelligence.html#catching-up-over-there

This source comes from the CIA talking about the early years of spying and the impact that different federal agencies had on World War I inside of the United States.

 

American Made Folk Hero

While researching the topic of propaganda during WWI, I came across Carl Sandberg. He was born in 1887 to two Swedish parents, and grew up as a working-class citizen. Due to his background as a working-class citizen, this is what led him to start contributing to the war propaganda.

Sandberg was a regular contributor of news and a poet in several liberal and radical magazines, as well as working for the Chicago Daily News as a reporter who focused primarily on the working-class citizens. He appealed so greatly the public, because he considered himself a communist and he wrote in the language of the working class.

Carl Sandburg as an opposer to the war, states;

‘“I am with all the rebels everywhere. Against all those who are satisfied,’ Sandburg once wrote. As far as he was concerned, there was a straight line from the early builders of the American nation, to the 20th century radicals, socialists, and unionists with whom the poet associated” (Peoples Poet 2015)

As Sandburg’s began to create music, he expressed his stance upon the war and all of the happenings in the US. Sandberg was famous in Connecticut though, and because he was highly regarded statewide, he was invited several different occasions to Connecticut to perform. Sandburg’s “collected folk songs and performances are treasures from America’s grassroots. His poetry offers a radical critique of economic exploitation” (“The Peoples Poet” 2015).

Carl Sandburg’s multitude of pieces of work are considered a form of propaganda, because they identify the war and it is used to persuade the public to focus on the workers who were a part of the war effort.

 

  • This article expresses Carl Sandburg’s impact on the US during the war, and tells us about his ties to Connecticut

https://connecticuthistory.org/carl-sandburg-poet-from-the-grassroots-reaches-connecticut-audiences/

 

  • This article about Carl Sandburg tells us who Carl Sandberg is and highlights his true intentions with his work.

https://shoeleatherhistoryproject.com/2015/04/17/carl-sandburg-peoples-poet/

 

  • This website tells us in greater detail, all of the things Carl Sandburg has done or accomplished over his lifetime. It specifically tells us who Carl Sandberg is and highlights his true intentions with his work.

http://www.english.illinois.edu/maps/poets/s_z/sandburg/sandburg_life.htm

Unacknowledged Heroes of the Lusitania

I examined the role that Connecticut played in the Sinking of the Lusitania on May 7th, 1915, the tragedy that is widely perceived to have persuaded the USA into entering WWI. While there is llusitania-hero-ABittle information connected to Suffield during this event, the state of Connecticut does have a rich history with this famous sinking. Aboard the Lusitania there were 1,960 passengers, and out of that group, twenty of the residents were from Connecticut. Among those twenty Connecticut residents involved in the Lusitania sinking, two of them are nationally perceived as heroes for saving ten percent of around seven hundred survivors. Elizabeth Duckwork, a weaver from Taftville, assisted in the rescue of forty passengers, and James Ham Brooks, a salesman in a Bridgeport manufacturing company, helped save 33 people. Another Connecticut survivor aboard the Lusitania was Theodate Pope, a Farmington citizen, who went abroad the Lusitania in hopes of reaching Liverpool to continue her research of “spiritualism”. Pope traveled with her colleague, Edward Friend, a philosopher who graduated from Harvard University. Pope survived the tragedy by clinging to the oar of a lifeboat for three long hours in the freezing waters in the Irish Sea [a true Titanic story!]. Edward Friend jumped off the side of the Lusitania before Pope did and was never seen again after the sinking. Pope is known for being the first female architect in Connecticut and for her architectural structures spread out around New York and Connecticut. Impressively enough, Pope created and founded Avon Old Farms, a single-sex boarding school in Avon, CT. Pope died at the age of forty-six in her home in Farmington, CT, which is now a museum dedicated to Theodate Pope herself. It would be very interesting to visit the museum in Farmington in order to learn a little more about a local survivor.

lusitania-hero-AB

 

Sources:

goo.gl/2ZnZP3

This source comes directly from the Hartford Courant and it is an article in remembrance of “The Sinking of The Lusitania” on its 100 year anniversary.