The American Legion was formed March 15th, 1919 at a meeting held in Paris, with the stated mission of providing advocacy and services to the veterans of World War 1, similar to the Civil War organizations the Grand Army of the Republic and the United Confederate Veterans. The Legion was chartered by Congress on Sept. 16th, 1919, (U.S. Code, Title 36, Chapters 41-50).
On December 10th, 1920, U.S. President Woodrow Wilson was awarded the 1919 Nobel Peace Prize, in recognition of his effort to create The League of Nations. This was a rare late award, permitted under the rules but not previously done. The reason for the delay was that some of the committee were reluctant because the U.S. Senate had failed to ratify the Treaty of Versailles in November, 1919.
This major motion picture will be released soon. Directed by Sam Mendes and produced by Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Partners, it features George McKay, Dean-Charles Chapman, Benedict Cumberbatch, Colin Firth, Mark Strong and Richard Madden. You can read more about this and view the trailer here.
Recently Hiawatha, Kansas, honored World War I hometown soldier Homer White, for whom the American Legion post is named. The National World War I Centennial Committee posted the story on their website. Here’s the link:
Episode #135 of the WWI Centennial News Podcast includes a story about Erwin Bleckley, the WWI flyer from Wichita who lost his life and received the Medal of Honor. See the link below; the Bleckley story starts at 8:05:
The 1919 Versailles Treaty required the payment of reparations to most of the Allied Powers for causing the war. No payments were to be made to Russia, who wasn’t represented at the conference, and the U.S. which refused to receive reparations or territorial concessions. The burden fell mostly on Germany, in an amount equivalent to $269 billion today. Cash reparations assessed to Austria, Hungary and Turkey were zeroed out due to their large territorial losses. Bulgaria paid about $1.4 billion in today’s money before their debt was cancelled in 1932.
A couple of things that may be of interest to the World War I people. As usual, all times are Central, and all can be watched any time at the C-SPAN website.
–Reel America “Uncle Sam Watching the Mexican Border”–1916. Airs at 12:23 a.m. early Friday morning, August 9. Second airing is at 6:27 a.m the same morning.