WAR ARTICLES & THOUGHTS FROM THE BATTLEFIELDS AND ARMED SERVICES VIA LETTERS & POETRY
From the Hart Scrapbook
Sunday marked the 13th anniversary of the United States' entrance into the World war and recalled to mind the glamor of the occasion when the gallant men of Jefferson county crossed the ocean to fight for their colors.
On April 6, 1917 at 1:30 p.m., Woodrow Wilson, then president of the United States, signed the joint-resolution passed by the senate and the house of representatives which made the country a contestant in the conflict that had raged in Europe for three years.Watertown men responded and on April 7 the local division of the Naval Militia, left for a destination unknown and amid the cheers of 5,000 Watertown people. As soon as orders of mobilization were received the city hall bell rang to notify the men of the division they had been called to the colors and every man of the division reported at the armory. Recruiting officers reported record enlistments. Many men tried examinations for commissions. On April 8, Easter Sunday, 18,000 people attended local churches where flags were displayed and pastors urged men to be ready for war. The now-famous Company C on April 10 marched about the city and with the exception of rifles the men carried full marching equipment.
CLAYTON MEN IN THE DRAFT OF 1863
From a copy of the Jefferson County Union, dated August 27, 1863, now in possession of Joseph Denny, we reprint the names of Clayton men called in the draft of that time:
Horace S. Cook, Clinton McCarn, Oren Stevens, James Daniels, William Murdock, Joseph Ward, Harvey Ingerson, Isaac H. Fonda, James Kelley, Riley Comings, Edward Bass, Peter Lefler, Cyrus Hawn, John Mason, Dorus Herkimer, Eli Seaver, James Thompson, David Pennock, Wm. H. Edmonds, Robert T. Smith, George W. Jennings, George Kissell, jr., Wm. Mitchell, jr., George Tierney, James McGhan, Thos. Emory, Sidney R. Sheldon, Reuben Halladay, Alex Walrath, Demster Low, Ashley Low, Wm. C. Avery, David C. Mills, F. Ormsby, Alvah Brown, Geo. D. Linnel, David Devendorf, Chas. E. Gloyd, George Pike, Frederick Haas, Augustus Nims, James E. Avery, Carton Johnson, Dominick Seymour, Truman Daniels, Sherman Halladay, John Stewart, John Luther, Joseph W. Rhodes, George A. Steele, William Berry, Andrew T. Baltz, Fred Knight, Richard Terry, Henry Denny, Chancy L. Barney, Henry Hall, Phillip Filley, Christian Halsworth, John Dorr, jr., Chancy B. Coffin, J. B. Hubbard, Westel Parish, W. H. Vodra, Philip Sourwine, Peter Fitz Jerold, James B. Lepper, Nelson Defoe, jr., Deloss Rector, Alfred Putnam, Lloyd Smith, John P. Nellis, Hiram Mount, Henry Hudson, D. G. Cappernall, Levi De Rosia, Patrick Dowdall, Levi C. Otis, Wm. Gunsolus, Lewis Vincent, George Hyle, Harvey Colie, John Abel, Nolah Hyde, John Patch, Wm. Baxter, George A. Norton, Thomas G. Carrier, Marshall Vincent, Warner Herkimer, John Mackey, Stephen L. Gillett, Jas. Deibe, Joel Forbs, James Hammond, Wm. V. Brennen, Milo C. Dunton, Martin Read, Henry Hartman, Thomas Kinney, Wm. Pike, James Pelcher, George P. Patchen, John Hayes, John Kanaley, James A. Lewis, Jackson Augusbury, Michael Thibault, George Hall, Thomas Tierney, James Johnson, Almon M. Barney, James A. Lee, Julius Joles, Byron Fox, Henry Hyle, John Hart, Joseph Thomas, Edward M. Fair, Luther Brown, jr., Robert Empie, Henry Robbins, Sylvester Bishop, Libeus Easterly, John M. Carter, H. F. Dayton, Joel Bushark, James Hooper, Arnold Vincent, Solomon V. Frame, Charles Forbes, Sanford Spaulding, Jacob Johnson, Wm. Dorathy, Henry Dorr, Samuel Orvis, Alvah Grant, Lewis Herbert, Marcellus Vincent, Simon Breslow, Benjamin Thibault, Thomas Mullin, Peter Syne, John Roderick, Ira Gillett, George Bertrand, Livingston S. Nims, Charles Brant, Nelson Johnson.
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March 27, 1930
LOCAL BOY, SERVING IN U. S.
NAVY, WRITES INTERESTING
LETTER TO PARENTS
United States Fleet, U. S. S. Texas
Enroute New Orleans to Colon
March 8, 1930
Dear Mother and Dad: --
Well New Orleans is on our fantail and Mardi Gras is a thing of the past for another year. We certainly had a wonderful time as guests of the city and everyone treated us fine. The parades were real good and when we paraded with the crew of the German cruiser, Emelia, it went over big. We sure got a big hand and the crowds were so thick we had to halt every little ways and wait for the police to clear the way so we could go on again. The Germans received a lot of applause when they did a snappy goose step marching by the reviewing stand. There was something going on most of the time, day and night, and the ship was so crowded with visitors you could hardly get around. The last day we were there the crowd was so jammed on the dock that several women fainted and had to be carried abroad (sic) and treated in the sick bay. But the marvelous thing about it was that no one seemed to get peeved and everyone was laughing and talking and all the while pushing and jamming for all they were worth. However, I am glad it is all over and we are out where I can catch up on lost sleep and recuperate a bit.
They gave us several dances and all the theatres were fine (sic) to men in uniform.
On Mardi Gras day everyone masked and paraded in all sorts of costumes from six o’clock in the morning until six at night when everyone had to unmask. There were bands and music of all kinds everywhere and dancing was carried on all over the streets. The Queen of the Mardi Gras sent a great big fancy cake to the crew of the Texas and all those who were around when it was cut got a big piece. All in all it was a fine trip and everyone is looking forward to our next cruise up there. I guess there are plenty of girls who will be looking for the Texas to come back again by the looks of the dock when we shoved off. The trip up the river was rather interesting too. We were held up at the mouth for about a day and a half by a heavy fog, but as soon as it lifted we proceeded at fifteen knots. We had to buck a few knot current and believe me the water sure is muddy. We traveled about a hundred miles up the river before we reached New Orleans and all the way up the river we were saluted by whistles from factories and all sorts of steamers and river crafts, and when we were sighted coming around the bend it sounded as if all the bells and whistles in New Orleans had broken lose. Sure was thrilling and a sight worth seeing. We are the only battleship that has ever navigated the Mississippi and believe me it is no cinch.
Well we arrived in Colon this A. M. before I had a chance to finish this letter. The battle fleet is in here now and we get underway in the morning for Guantanam (sic) Bay to conduct maneuvers with the rest of the fleet. Sure will get our fill of it before we arrive back in New York in May.
I had some pictures taken in New Orleans and will send one as soon as I can get it fixed up. Hope you like it. It is so darn hot here I can’t write much more so will be looking for a letter from you soon.
Mr. Gale is the son of Mr. and Mrs. W. W. Gale of this village.
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(first line of caption missing)
RECEIVE TWO STRIPES
HAS SERVED NEARLY A YEAR
IN FRANCE WITH MOTOR
Mrs. G. H. Patchin, of East Watertown, has received the following letter from her son, James Patchin, who is in France with the American Expeditionary Forces:
C. O. A. 502 Engrs.,
A. E. F. via New York,
Sept. 30, 1918.
Dear Father, Mother and all:
I have received all your letters and was glad to get them. Have been so busy I could not write, that is it has been a little late when I get in, and as I was allowed to stay in bed a little longer, my time was all taken up. I received the pictures all O. K., they are fine. I am well, but a little tired tonight after a ride of over 200 miles. I am going to try and have a picture taken with the fellow who rides with me and our machine -- also I will try and get some good ones of myself alone, will send them as soon as I get them done.
Well, I guess I have written all I can think of except that the weather is getting a little cold, and it won’t be more than two months before I will be due to wear two service stripes. One is allowed for every six months in foreign service and I have put in nearly a year.
Well, good night, with love to you all,
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FELTS MILLS MAN
IN BASE HOSPITAL
PVT. OSCAR FEISTEL RECOVER-
ING FROM WOUNDS IN
THIGH AND HAND
Three Mile Bay, Dec. 17. -- The enclosed letter was received Monday by Mrs. Philip Feistel, from Miss Tuttle, a nurse who has been attending Mrs. Feistal’s son, Oscar, in Base Hospital, 24, Limgoes, France. Oscar left with the second contingent, in November, 1917, and was stationed at Camp Dix, from which place, he was sent overseas in May, 1918, and has been in active service since June, but had written quite regularly. The last letter was received the latter part of October. The nurse’s letter follows:
“My Dear Mrs. Feistel:
“Your son has asked me to write you for him and tell you that he is at present in Base Hospital, 24, Limoges, France, recovering from his wounds, which he received Nov. 4, in the fighting near the Meuse. He was wounded by machine gun fire and shrapnel, one bullet striking his left thigh, and his right arm and hand receiving seven cuts. He is making splendid progress and both doctors and nurses say he is sure to make a fine recovery.
It has been a great pleasure to me to meet him, and anything I can do to help cheer him up I surely will see done. By the time this reaches you, he may be using his hand again and able to write for himself. If not, I’ll continue to act as his private secretary, so that you may know just how things are going.
“Very sincerely yours,
“Dorothy B. Tuttle.
“A. P. O., 753 American Expeditionary Forces.”