Kansas WW1

Commemorating the First World War Centennial in Kansas

View the Progress on the DC WW1 Memorial

By clicking here, you can sign up for a LIVE virtual tour of the project site on Friday April 3rd. Architect Joseph Weishaar, sculptor Sabin Howard and the project managers will be the guides.

Even though they’re are observing the distancing protocols in place in DC, construction hasn’t stopped. ...read more

Pandemic

History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes.

attributed to Mark Twain

We now find ourselves in a quandary similar to that of 1918. Of course, there is no one left who went through the Great Influenza Pandemic, but there are still some of us who knew someone who did. One such person was my mother-in-law, Priscilla Hicks (1908-2004). Her stories as told to her daughter resonate today. ...read more

The Hindenburg Line

One hundred three years ago in France, the German Army performed Operation Alberich, a withdrawal to their newly constructed defenses known as the Siegfried Stellung or, to the British, the Hindenburg Line. This new fortress work was a masterpiece of military engineering that made the British positions in the Loos sector that were discussed in the previous article look rather ordinary. Read the Wikipedia entry on The Hindenburg Line by clicking here. ...read more

Engineering on the Western Front

The Durand Group was founded by two Royal Engineers, Lt Col Philip Robinson and Lt Col Mike Watkins, following their experience removing several undetonated mines at Vimy Ridge. The group continues to be the premier engineering firm regarding for this kind of work, and with its charitable foundation has also undertaken extensive underground archeological exploration. You can visit their website by clicking here. ...read more

Now Available from the National Archives

Signal Corps camera team

U.S. Army Signal Corps photographers and cameramen were very active on the Western Front. We’ve all seen many examples of their works – the photographs all have the ‘crossed flags’ logo and a file number in the lower left hand corner. Now the National Archives and Records Administration has completed the digitization of ALL of the U.S. Army Signal Corps films from World War One that they’ve got. You can read more about this by clicking here. ...read more

WWI on Turner Classic Movies for March

I’m already a little slow in posting WWI-themed movies on Turner Classics for this month–if you missed it, Paths of Glory was on last night as part of TCM’s tribute to the late Kirk Douglas.

That doesn’t mean there aren’t a few movies to be seen later on this month, although they might not reach the same stature of Paths of Glory. As usual, all times are Central. ...read more

The National WW1 Memorial is under Construction

The Eli Lilly Foundation has pledged $5 million towards the National WW1 Memorial project in recognition of the service of Capt. J. K. Lilly, Jr., who was a medical supply officer on the Western Front.  A grandson of the founder, he later headed up the pharmaceutical giant. ...read more

1917 the Movie

When this site went dark this film had just been released. Since then it was nominated for ten Academy Awards and received three of them, for Cinematography, Sound Mixing and Visual Effects. There have been several reviews published, mostly favorable, although historical nit-pickers like myself have questioned the scene with the Sikh soldiers, as all Indian troops had been withdrawn from the Western Front in 1916. Following are links to two reviews by British historians. Click here and here. ...read more

C-SPAN3, February 21-22

After some difficulties we seem to be back in business, and we’ll get started with some World War I programming on C-SPAN3 this weekend. As usual, all times are Central.

Lectures in History: Neutrality & World War I America. Airs at 8:46 p.m. on Friday, February 21st; repeats at 12:56 a.m. and 5:05 a.m on Saturday, February 22nd. ...read more

The Minor Poets of WW1

Some of the ‘battlefield poets’ of the First World War are well-known: Wilfred Owen, Rupert Brooke, Alan Seeger, Francis Ledwidge, Robert Graves, Siegfried Sassoon, Julian Grenfell, Guillaume Apollinaire,  August Stramm, John McRae and A. Joyce Kilmer among others. You can read more about some of these by clicking here. ...read more

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