“Rather a peculiar thing happened a few days ago,” Lieutenant Howard Smith of Hudson Falls wrote his mother from a military hospital in France on December 26th, 1918. “One of the orderlies of this ward found a picture of me in The Post-Star while he was in another ward. It was an account of my getting a Boche.” [Read more…] about A First World War Holiday Miracle
World War One
In economic terms, the Western world made its fortune after the Industrial Revolution(s). Money became the deity of the age. But in the words of John Ruskin, “wise consumption is far more difficult than wise production.”
In the race for material prosperity, the idea of social purpose was lost or forgotten. By the beginning of the twentieth century, both in Europe and America, collective aimlessness deteriorated into vulgarities of excess. [Read more…] about An Age of Opulence In London and New York
In the course of the nineteenth century, powerful and relatively stable explosives were developed. Dynamite became synonymous with radicalism and the moniker “dynamitist” preceded that of terrorist.
On September 16, 1920, a bomb was set off on a busy corner of Manhattan’s financial district. At 12:01 pm, a horse-drawn wagon concealing 100 pounds of dynamite was detonated. The blast killed thirty-eight people. [Read more…] about The First Red Scare: Socialist Suppression and Explosive Anarchism
A new full-color digital graphic novel by the Association of the United States Army Book Program, Medal of Honor: Henry Johnson, recognizes the remarkable acts of Henry Johnson of Albany during the First World War.
No one, other than railroad workers, was around on Sept. 5, 1916 when the campaign train of Republican presidential candidate Charles Evans Hughes stopped at the Louisville, Kentucky station, en route to Lexington and eventually upstate New York. [Read more…] about Politics and War Preparations: Charles Evans Hughes in Plattsburgh
This week on The Historians Podcast, Malta town historian Paul Perreault has the story of a famous drawing of Andersonville Prison in Georgia done by a Union prisoner, Thomas O’Dea. Perreault also has an account of the Saratoga Battlefield and the story of a fighting chaplain in World War I, Reverend Francis Kelly. [Read more…] about A Famous Drawing Of An Infamous Prison
Royal Academy of Belgium artist Edward P. Buyck de Morkhoven, known for his portraits of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and other prominent politicians, lived in upstate New York for much of his adult life.
Buyck, also was known for his painting of race horses, landscapes and historical settings. At the time of his death in 1960, his painting of an old-time Albany scene at the corner of State and Pearl streets, still hung at the Munger-DeWitt Clinton Hotel in Albany. [Read more…] about WWI Vet, Belgian Painter Edward Buyck in NY
The Christmas Truce was a ceasefire between German, French, and British troop on the western-front on Christmas Eve in December 1914. Both sides informally agreed to stop fighting for a few hours and joined together for food, carols, and companionship.
The 5th Annual Peace Carol, an evening honoring the Christmas Truce of World War One, on Tuesday, December 10th, at 4:30 pm. This celebration features carol sing-alongs led by the Unitarian Universalist Church of Utica choir, a performance by members of the Proctor Senior Choir, the Procter JNROTC Color Guard, a presentation on the truce by Joe Schmidt, light refreshments, and more. [Read more…] about ‘Christmas Truce’ Peace Carol in Utica
Katherine Truesdell Schumacher’s new book Letters from a Doughboy: the Wartime Experiences of Robert Doan Truesdell in World War I (RIT Press, 2019) documents Corporal Robert Doan Truesdell’s letters to home, personalizing the harsh realities of a war that ended a century ago.
The letters capture the perspective of an American soldier who witnesses the killing fields of Belgium and France, and the great cities of Paris and London. [Read more…] about First World War Letters from a New York Doughboy
A black dagger passed down through four generations had a “story” behind it. All the family knew was that it was “taken off a German soldier in France, during The First World War.”
The dagger made its way from the battlefields of France to Ontario, Canada and then to Oneida County, NY in 1918. But whose was it, and why had a Canadian soldier brought it home? [Read more…] about Case of the Black Dagger