update subscription preferences

View this in your browser

Header 10292020

February 2024

1,000th Daily Taps at the National WWI Memorial

The 1,000th consecutive sounding of Daily Taps at the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC took place on February 19, 2024. Bugler Kevin Paul of the Doughboy Foundation sounded taps in honor of WWI New York National Guard Bugler Clarence Clarke. The newly-formed American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) Band (in World War I uniforms) participated in the ceremonies, and salutes as Taps is sounded.

1,000th Performance Of Daily Taps At  National World War I Memorial In Washington, DC Honors NYC Bugler

Clarence Clark

The United States World War I Centennial Commission and the Doughboy Foundation marked the 1,000th performance of Daily Taps at the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC. The event took place on Monday, 19 February, at 5:00 pm EST. This milestone sounding of Daily Taps took place in honor of Clarence Clarke, Bugler Co. D, 15th New York National Guard Infantry/369th U.S. Infantry (the Harlem Hellfighters), who served in World War I and World War II. The Doughboy Foundation operates the Daily Taps program. Read more about the 1,000th performance of Daily Taps on the Department of Defense News website here, and on the Stars and Stripes website here

Women’s History Month: Ideal Time To Ask Your Senators and Representative To Support Congressional Gold Medal For The Hello Girls

Hello Girls pop-up image

Women's History Month starts on Friday, March 1, a month dedicated to "commemorating and encouraging the study, observance and celebration of the vital role of women in American history." This makes it the ideal time for all Americans to reach out to their two Senators and Representative to request their immediate support for current legislation in each House to award a Congressional Gold Medal to the U.S. Army Signal Corps telephone operators of World War I, known as the "Hello Girls." America's First Women Soldiers earned this honor through their outstanding service in World War I

Women's History Month at Women's Military Memorial vertical

The Hello Girls will be at the top of the agenda on Sunday, March 3 at the Military Women’s Memorial in Arlington, VA, as they kick off “March With Me” – a celebration of Women’s History Month at the only memorial to tell the stories of all women who have served our nation. The award-winning  Hello Girls documentary will be screened in the memorial's Vaught Center at 1:00 pm Sunday (get there early!). Filmmaker James Theres will be on hand to discuss the movie after the showing, and to talk about the essential role that the Hello Girls played in bringing the fighting to a close in World War I.. Joining him will be several descendants and family members of Hello Girls, who will share their knowledge and memories of their family heroines, and take questions from the audience. If you are anywhere in the National Capital Region, request your tickets now to attend this event, which also features “Honoring Her Voice,” a special musical performance by The U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own” chamber players, and an Open House at the Memorial.. 

Four of the descendants and family members of Hello Girls have joined forces to pen an eloquent editorial about why America's First Women Soldiers deserve the recognition of a Congressional Gold Medal. The short answer is that it's "A distinction they have earned," but the four authors go into excellent detail on how the "adventurous, even intrepid pioneers of their time" answered their nation's call in 1918.The women of the Hello Girls risked their lives in service, and two died in France. Click here to read the entire editorial, which is seeking placement in publications across the nation to support the Congressional Gold Medal legislation

Hello girls at switchboard

You can join these family members in advocating for passage of the Hello Girls Congressional Gold Medal legislation in 2024, and do it right from your computer! Click here for our toolbox that makes the process of reaching out to your Representative and Senators very straightforward. You can also reach out by phone to the local and district offices of your Senators and Representative, and tell them that you want them to answer the call, and cosponsor the Hello Girls Congressional Gold Medal legislation in the 118th Congress.

Hello Girls with helmet

The Hello Girls made critical battlefield tactical communications work effectively for U.S. and French military forces on the front lines of World War I, saving the lives of many American by helping bring the long war to a quicker end. However, when the Hello Girls returned home after WWI ended, they were denied veterans status and benefits until 1977. The Hello Girls earned and deserve the recognition of a Congressional Gold Medal, and the World War I Centennial Commission asks you to helpmake that happen in the 118th Congress!

When their nation called in 1918, the Hello Girls answered -- will YOU answer their call for recognition in 2024?

VA's National Cemetery Administration Dedicates Headstones Honoring WWI Black Soldiers, Correcting 1917 Injustice

Houston headstone

On November 22, 2024, the Department of Veterans Affairs’ National Cemetery Administration (NCA) hosted a memorial ceremony in San Antonio, Texas, at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery righting a wrong of the past by dedicating new headstones for 17 World War I Black soldiers of the 3rd Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment. These soldiers were among those executed following the courts martial of 110 Black soldiers charged with murder and mutiny in the 1917 Houston Riots. Read more about the event on the VA website here, and on the BNN website here. 

Gloucestershire Foundry Completing Sculpture for US National WWI Memorial

Snip of final sculpture segment

The final section of the monumental sculpture for the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC  has arrived to be bronzed at the Pangolin foundry in Gloucestershire, UK. American sculptor Sabin Howard and Pangolin in Stroud have taken 10 years to create the life-size battle scene. The 25 ton bronze depicts 38 figures. The sculpture is to be installed at the National World War I Memorial near the White House in Washington, with an unveiling in the autumn. Click here to read the entire article and see photos from the BBC.

“Sonoma Answers The Call”
The Hello Girls: A New American Musical

Sonoma Arts Live Hello Girls

"Once in a lifetime, a special show comes across your desk or nowadays, your favorite streaming app, and your life will never be the same," says Maeve Smith at Sonoma Arts Live theatre company in Sonoma, CA. For Smith, that show is The Hello Girls, the story of "the first unit of women to contribute directly to combat operations in American history." She will direct the play at Sonoma Arts Live in April, and it will be a labor of love for her. Click here to find our how Smith found the play, learned more about the history of the unit, and discovered that the final resting place of one of the Hello Girls from California is not far from the theater in Sonoma!

Kansas City Family Recalls World War I Hero Henry Johnson With Pride

Henry Johnson

What once was a Louisiana U.S. Army base named for a Confederate general today bears the name of a Black World War I U.S. Army private. It’s a complicated story that took more than a century to unfold, and there’s a Kansas City connection. “This was beyond anything we expected,” said Tara Johnson, daughter of the late Herman Johnson, a Kansas City businessman and civil rights leader. Herman Johnson worked for years to see the man he believed to be his father, World War I war hero Henry Johnson, receive formal acknowledgment for his fierce courage and resolve. Click here to read the whole story, and learn how “Granddad’s honors have exceeded what we had hoped when our journey started.

World War I Doc Blazes Trail For Black Hospital, EMS Community

Frank Boston

Throughout American history, Black service members have forged new paths for future generations, despite the prejudices they may have encountered. One such trailblazer was Dr. Frank Erdman Boston, who reached the rank of major during World War I. He went on to become one of the first Black men to start both a hospital and an ambulance corps, which are still in business today. Click here to read the entire article, and learn how the first use in WWI of medical technologies such as mobile X-ray machines and motorized ambulances contributed to Boston’s interest in starting the corps.

Elsewhere, in Doctor Boston's hometown of Lansdale, PA, The Boston Legacy Foundation recently honored three young African American women for their achievements at a fundraiser to support the Dr. Frank Boston documentary film project that is currently under development. Click here to read more about the awardees, and about the movie that is intended to "help give Dr. Boston a permanent and well-deserved place in history."

Bell From Famous US WWI Destroyer Sunk Off Scillies Returned To USN

The bell of USS Jacob Jones

A team from the UK MOD’s Salvage and Marine Operations recovered the bell of USS Jacob Jones from the depths of the Atlantic, 107 years after the ship had the ill fortune to be the first destroyer in the history of the US Navy to be lost to enemy action. Using a remotely-operated vehicle, the team not only recovered the bell but also placed a wreath and the Stars and Stripes on the wreck in tribute to the 64 men lost 107 years ago. Click here to read more about the salvage mission, and watch an in-depth video about USS Jacob Jones and her sinking.

Eugene Bullard: A Pilot’s Struggle For Freedom In And After World War I

Eugene Bullard

In February every year, as part of Black History Month, France and the United States commemorate Eugene Bullard, the first African American fighter pilot in history, who served France in both world wars. But while official tributes focus on the military exploits of the “Black Swallow of Death,” they tend to gloss over his pioneering anti-racist struggle. From the cotton fields of Georgia to Roaring Twenties Paris and the civil rights movement in Harlem, this Jim Crow refugee was also a staunch activist. Click here to learn of the annual ceremony honoring Bullard at the French War Veterans’ section of Flushing Cemetery in Queens, and more about his long fight for equality in his own country.

Daily Taps at the National World War I Memorial

Honoring Frank Buckles

On February 27, 2024, Daily Taps at the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC sounded in honor of Frank Buckles, the last surviving American World War I Veteran, who died on February 27, 2011 at the age of 110.

Buckles, who drove an Army ambulance in France in 1918, came to symbolize a generation of embattled young Americans as the last living link to the two million men who served in the American Expeditionary Forces in France in “the war to end all wars.” Edwin Fountain, currently the General Counsel for the American Battle Monuments Commission, previously served as a Commissioner on the United States World War I Centennial Commission. He has written thoughtfully on his relationship with Frank Buckles, and Frank's dedication in the last years of his life to the cause of building a National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC to honor all the Doughboys.

  Frank Buckles 1917 and 2009

The Daily Taps program of the Doughboy Foundation provides a unique opportunity to dedicate a livestreamed sounding of Taps in honor of a special person of your choice while supporting the important work of the Doughboy Foundation. Choose a day, or even establish this honor in perpetuityClick here for more information on how to honor a loved veteran with the sounding of Taps.

Echoes Of Valor: Oscar Hampton “Buddy” Bowers, Heroic Veteran Of WWI

Buddy Bowers

"As most battle scarred veterans across the ages in all wars," says Joe Bowers, "Dad was reluctant to talk about his wartime experiences. To preclude those now-faint echoes from receding entirely and probably forevermore, I would like to introduce my father (Dad), Oscar Hampton “Buddy” Bowers 1879-1978, heroic veteran of WWI." Thus begins Joe Bowers' look at his father's wartime legacy, including a long-lost epic poem by the decorated but taciturn World War I hero. Click here to read the extraordinary poem “Over The Top With The 35th Division” and see why Joe Bowers felt it important that "a record and enduring legacy will be preserved for Dad as a father, a patriot, a valorous soldier, and a hero of mine and our country."

Families Honor Private First Class (PFC) Patrick McKenna, USA For WWI Service

Patrick McKenna

Lieutenant Colonel Martin J. Ingram, NYG (Ret.) provides an amazing three-part retrospective account of how his far-flung Irish, American, Australian, and South African family members discovered the World War I service and death of his grand uncle, Private First Class (PFC) Patrick McKenna, USA, and how they commemorated his life and passing 100 years later. Click here to read the whole thing, watch the wonderful video, and learn how four generations of the relatives of Pvt. Patrick McKenna paid their respects to the soldier "whose life and sacrifice had been unknown to most of his relatives for years."

Chance Discovery At Used Bookshop Leads To Astounding Tale Of Intrigue

Agent of  the Iron Cross cover

"Three years ago I was engaged in one of my favorite pastimes, searching through old books at a used book shop, when I made a significant find." How significant was Bill Mills dusty find? It opened up an amazing but largely forgotten story of German espionage and covert activities in and against the United States before and after the nation entered World War I, all captured in his new book Agent of the Iron Cross. Click here to find out more about Mills' discovery, the new book that it inspired, and learn of "the startling amount of destruction that can result when only a few hostile agents enter the Unites States."

“My Grandfather’s Smiling From Heaven”: Tampa Working To Honor Cemetery For Black WWI Soldiers

Tampa Florida Negro World-War Veterans Memorial plan

Tampa's Memorial Park Cemetery means the world to Noreen Copeland-Miller. “My grandfather was in World War I. He was Private 1329," she said. So Copeland- Miller was pleased when the City of Tampa Community Redevelopment Agency decided to  clean up and restore the historical marker there, and add other elements around it to pay tribute to the valor and service of African-Americans in World War I, such as her grandfather. Click here read more about the project, and learn why Copeland-Miller thinks that her grandfather is "smiling from heaven."


A Survey: The Generational Correlation Between Trauma In Families Of The Navajo Long Walk And PTSD In WWI

PTSD victim

Ava Marie Machtinger is a high school junior taking a class known as AP Research, in which she must collect data for and write a 5,000-word paper that will help "form a new understanding" of her study topic. As part of her research, she is seeking responses to a survey from family members who are still facing generational trauma from two long-ago but tragic events that generated what we now understand as PTSD: World War I (1914-1918), and the Navajo Long Walk (1864) in the American West. No PII will be collected by the survey. Click here to read more about this study, and determine if your family history would make you a good candidate to support her academic research by taking this anonymous online survey.

National World War I Museum Exhibit Explores War’s Impact On Children

Child in Doughboy uniform

The “Greatest Generation” is renowned for military heroism during World War II. But before this famed demographic signed up to fight for Uncle Sam, many were shaped by a childhood spent amid World War I. It’s not surprising, then, that the First World War instilled an entire generation with a brand of patriotism that could prompt risking everything to preserve the American dream. That exact experience is currently showcased in the National World War I Museum’s exhibit “The Little War,” an exploration of childhood between 1914 and 1918. Click here to read more about the exhibit, and learn how "the literature that was being produced for children at the time, the toys, the games they were playing...made it that much easier to embrace the Second World War just 20 to 25 years later.

Americans In Flanders Fields.
Names & Places.

Americans In Flanders Fields poster

The participation of the United States was a turning point in the course of the First World War. In a new thematic exhibition, In Flanders Fields Museum titled Americans in Flanders Fields highlights the presence of Americans in Belgium during the First World War, before and after the official US participation in the war. The Expo,  the result of a partnership between the Museum, Smithsonian Institution (Washington, USA) and the United States Embassy in Belgium, is part of the permanent exhibition. Click here to read more about this new exhibit which demonstrates yet again that "“Whoever you are, wherever you are, you are living in a world that has been shaped and defined by the First World War." 

The Seven Men Of Marlborough

Henry LaForme

Michael Santoro this month takes a close look at an "extremely detailed 1920-dated studio portrait that showcases seven American soldiers from Marlborough, Massachusetts. All seven men were from one small neighborhood, around Lincoln & East Main Street. Despite living so close together, many of them took very different paths in their service." Click here to read more about this historical photograph, and the "harrowing story" it tells about Henry LaForme (left) and his "childhood friends being sent into the worst fray any U.S. soldier had experienced, almost all partaking in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, which is to this day the bloodiest offensive in American history. "

Navy WWI Battleship USS Texas Is Making A Comeback Like No Other

USS Texas in drydock 2023

Over a century ago, the U.S. Navy launched its USS Texas battleship. The formidable New York-class vessel would go on to serve in the Mexican waters following the “Tampico Incident” and later operate in the North Sea during the First World War. The historic battleship is once again on the move, this time to undergo a series of necessary repairs required to keep the boat afloat for future visitors to see her and learn her history. Click here to read more about the work that the Battleship Texas Foundation is doing to keep the venerable warship available to the public, and watch amazing before-and-after time-lapse video of the great ship in drydock.

“Fueled By Boundless Enthusiasm” — RIP Dennis Skupinski Of The Michigan World War I Centennial Commission

Dennis Skupinski

Many who have worked with the World War One Centennial Commission and the Doughboy Foundation were saddened with the news that Dennis Skupinski, the Michigan State Commission Chair WWI amateur historian, passed away recently. David Hamon remembers how Skupinski "crisscrossed the state, promoting the commemoration and speaking to veterans, communities, and civic groups to energize efforts to observe the 100 year anniversary." Click here to read Hamon's entire reflection on how Skupinski spent his time as Chair "ceaselessly promoting the Michigan and Michiganders contributions to the Great War."

World War I News Digest February 2024

Tennessee WWI Love Letters  

World War I was The War that Changed the World, and its impact on the United States continues to be felt over a century later, as people across the nation learn more about and remember those who served in the Great War. Here's a collection of news items from the last month related to World War I and America.

East Tennessee Love Letters That Crossed Oceans

James Reese Europe: The WWI “Martin Luther King Of Music”

What WWI (1916) Teaches Us About The Ukraine War (2024)

American Legion Founder ‘A Man Of Action’

WWI Survival And Rescue At Sea: Ensign Kenneth Smith, USN

ABMC Honors Black WWI US Soldier Buried In France

Ipswich In World War I

Black History Month Trailblazers: SGT. Henry Johnson

Battlefield Sanitation Improvements Due To The Great War

One Of Most Decorated African American Soldiers In WWI

"C" Battery's WWI lineage: first U.S. unit to fire a round in Europe

“Charmed Soldiers,” National WWI Museum And Memorial

Roberts’ 'Harlem Hellfighters’ Film Spotlights WWI Heroes

Audio: What WWI Sounded Like When Guns & Bombs Stopped

Michigan Post Named For WWI Medal Of Honor Recipient

What The World Would Look Like If WWI Never Happened

How Uniforms Evolved In World War I

Doughboy MIA for February 2024

PVT Robert Alsleben

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Our Doughboy MIA this month is PVT Robert Alsleben ASN3129477 Company A, 308th Infantry.

PVT Alsleben was born on May 1st, 1894, in Penn, Minnesota. Before the war, PVT Alsleben worked on his family’s farm in New Auburn. He was inducted on May 28th, 1918. He sailed to France with the 40th Division in August of 1918, and upon arrival overseas, he was transferred to Company “A”, 308th Infantry Regiment, 77th Division. On September 27th, 1918, his company was fighting north of La Harazée, France, when Germans began to encircle their position. Lieutenant Whiting ordered the men to return to their starting positions from the morning to escape being cut off.

Robert Alsleben

At some point during the retreat, PVT Alsleben was reportedly struck by machine gun bullets and killed. When the company later returned, no sign of PVT Alsleben could be found. The German Red Cross reports PVT Alsleben was captured and died in a German Field Hospital in Grandpré, France, on September 28th, 1918, as a result of gunshot wounds to the abdomen and thigh. After the war, the Graves Registration Service could not locate his remains. In correspondence to the Graves Registration Service, French authorities suggested that the remains of PVT Alsleben may have been mistaken for a German soldier when they were transferring German graves from Grandpré to the Buzancy German Cemetery. There were no further leads in his case. PVT Alsleben is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing at the Meuse-Argonne American Cemetery in Romagne-sous-Montfaucon, France.

Would you like to be involved with solving the case of PVT Robert Alsleben, and all the other Americans still in MIA status from World War I? You can! Click here to make a tax-deductible donation to our non-profit organization today, and help us bring them home! Help us do the best job possible and give today, with our thanks.  Remember: A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Merchandise from the Official
Doughboy Foundation WWI Store

Bugler-Poppy Commemorative Coin

Bugler/Poppy Commemorative Coin

A great keepsake to commemorate 
Daily Taps at the National World War
One Memorial in Washington, DC.

  • A Doughboy.shop Exclusive Commemorative Coin
  • The double-sided design showcases the iconic Doughboy Bugler / Poppy design
  • Soft enamel color detailing
  • Measures 1 3/4″
  • Bronze alloy w/ nickel-silver finish
WWI Poppy Lapel Pin

Poppy Lapel Pin

  • Exclusive Commemorative WW1 Poppy Lapel Pin
  • Soft enamel color design
  • Approx. 1.5 inch in dia.
  • Standard military clasp

Proceeds from the sale of these items will help complete the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the Doughboy Foundation.

William Anderson

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


William Anderson

Submitted by: Nathaniel Jenkins, Jr. {Grandson}

William Anderson was born around 1894. William Anderson served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1918.

Story of Service

My grandfather, William Anderson, a South Carolina native, was a real American War Hero. He was a quiet and warm man, a jack-of-all-trades born in the late1800s, and he lived a humble life in Asheville, North Carolina. He was part of an all-black regiment that fought with French soldiers against the Germans during World War I.

When my mother would take me and my sisters to visit him, he would frequently show us his medal that he had tucked away in an old tarnished tin Sucrets box. The medal, shaped like an Iron Cross backed by crossed swords, was marred with time; and it had an aged green and red ribbon attached. My grandfather would beam with pride every time he displayed the medal, but as little kids we didn’t fully understand the significance of his pride. Apparently, he wanted his grandchildren and great-grandchildren to know what he'd done--and to be proud of him.

Many years later, I discovered that Grandfather Anderson's efforts on the battlefield earned him a coveted French medal, the Croix de Guerre or Cross of War, for bravery in combat action. That's the same honor given Audie Murphy, the most decorated American combat soldier of World War II.

The citation accompanying the medal revealed that William Anderson, formerly a private in Company D, 371ST Infantry, 93 Division, American Expeditionary Forces, was awarded the Croix de Guerre for actions in the course of the campaign of 1914-1918 against Germany and her Allies. Anderson was a workhorse of Company D. He was a machine gunner.

Read William Anderson's entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.