Chateau-Thierry, Fields Of Glory
( Originally Published 1918 )
NOWHERE in American history may be found a more glorious record than that which crowned with laurel the American arms at Château-Thierry. Here the American Marines and divisions comprising both volunteers and selected soldiers, were thrown before the German tide of invasion like a huge khaki-colored breakwater. Germany knew that a test of its empire had come. To break the wall of American might it threw into the van of the attack the Prussian Guard backed by the most formidable troops of the German and Austrian empires. The object was to put the fear of the Hun into the hearts of the Yankees, to overwhelm them, to drive straight through them as the prow of a battleship shears through a heavy sea. If America could be defeated, Germany's way to a speedy victory was at hand. If America held—well, that way lay disaster.
And the Americans held. Not only did they hold out but they counter-attacked with such bloody consequences to the German army that Marshal Foch, seizing the psychological moment for his carefully prepared counter-offensive, gave the word for a general attack.
With Château-Thierry and the Marne as a hinge, the clamp of the Allies closed upon the defeated Germans. From Switzerland to the North Sea the drive went forward, operating as huge pincers cutting like chilled steel through the Hindenburg and the Kriemhild lines. It was the beginning of autocracy's end, the end of Der Tag of which Germany had dreamed.
The matchless Marines and the other American troops suffered a loss that staggered America. It was a loss, however, that was well worth while. The heroic young Americans who held the might of Germany helpless and finally rolled them back defeated from the field of battle, and who paid for that victory with r lives, made certain the speedy end of the world's bloodiest war.
The story of the American army's effective operations in France from Cantigny to the reduction of the St. Mihiel salient, is one long record of victories. To the glory of American arms must be recorded the fact that at no time and at no place in the World War did the American forces retreat before the German hosts.
In the latter days of May, 1918, the Allied forces in France seemed near defeat. The Germans were steadily driving toward Paris. They had swept over the Chemin des Dames and the papers from day to day were chronicling wonderful successes. The Chemin des Dames had been regarded as impregnable, but the Germans passed it apparently without the slightest difficulty. They were advancing on a forty-mile front and on May 28th had reached the Aisne, with the French and British steadily falling back. The anxiety of the Allies throughout the world was indescribable. This was the great German "Victory Drive" and each day registered a new Allied defeat. Newspaper headlines were almost despairing.
On May 29th, however, in quiet type, under great headlines announcing a German gain of ten miles in which the Germans had taken twenty-five thousand prisoners and crossed two rivers, had captured Soissons, and were threatening Rheims, there appeared in American papers a quiet little despatch from General Pershing. It read as follows:
"This morning in Picardy our troops at-tacked on a front of one and one-fourth miles, advanced our lines, and captured the village of Cantigny. We took two hundred prisoners, and inflicted on the enemy severe losses in killed and wounded. Our casualties were relatively small. Hostile counter-attacks broke down under our fire." This was the first American offensive.
The American troops had now been in Europe almost a year. At first but a small force, they had been greeted in Paris and in London with tremendous enthusiasm. Up to this point they had done little or nothing, but the small force which passed through Paris in the summer of 1917 had been growing steadily. By this time the American army numbered more than eight hundred thousand men. They had been getting ready; in camps far behind the lines they had been trained, not only by their own officers, but by some of the greatest experts in the French and the British armies. Thousands of officers and men who, but a few months before, had been busily engaged in civilian pursuits, had now learned something of the art of war. They had been supplied with a splendid equipment, with great guns and with all the modern requirements of an up-to-date army.
For some months, here and there, on the French and British lines, small detachments of American troops flanked on both sides by the Allied forces, had been learning the art of war. Here and there they had been under fire. At Cantigny itself they had resisted attack. On May 27th General Pershing had reported "In Picardy, after violent artillery preparations, hostile infantry detachments succeeded in penetrating our advance positions in two points. Our troops counter-attacked, completely expelling the enemy and entering his lines." They had also been fighting that day in the Woevre sector where a raiding party had been repulsed. There had been other skirmishes, too, in which many Americans had won honors both from Great Britain and France. But the attack at Cantigny was the first distinct American advance.
The Americans penetrated the German positions to the depth of nearly a mile. Their artillery completely smothered the Germans, and its whirr could be heard for many miles in the rear. Twelve French tanks supported the American infantry. The artillery preparation lasted for one hour, and then the lines of Americans went over the top. A strong unit of flame throwers and engineers aided the Americans. The American barrage moved forward a hundred yards in two minutes and then a hundred yards in four minutes. The infantry followed with clock-like precision. Fierce hand-to-hand fighting occurred in Cantigny, which contained a large tunnel and a number of caves. The Americans hurled hand grenades like baseballs into these shelters.
The attack had been carefully planned and was rehearsed by the infantry with the tanks. In every detail it was under the direction of the Superior French Command, to whom much of the credit for its success was due. The news of the American success created general satisfaction among the French and English troops. The operation, of course, was not one of the very greatest importance. It was a sort of an experiment, but coming as it did, in the middle of the great German Drive, it was ominous. America had arrived.
On May 30th General Pershing announced the complete repulse of further enemy attacks from the new American positions near Cantigny. This time he says : "There was considerable shelling with gas, but the results obtained were very small. The attempt was a complete failure. Our casualties were very light. We have consolidated our positions."
The London Evening News commenting on this fact says : "Bravo the young Americans ! Nothing in today's battle narrative from the front is more exhilarating than the account of their fight at Cantigny. It was clean cut from beginning to end, like one of their countrymen's short stories, and the short story of Cantigny is going to expand into a full-length novel which will write the doom of the Kaiser and Kaiserism. Cantigny will one day be repeated a thousand fold."
The Germans, in reporting this fight, avoided mention of the fact that the operation had been conducted by American troops. This seemed to indicate that they feared the moral effect of such an admission in Germany. Up to this time, with the exception of small brigades, the American army had been held as a reserve. After the Cantigny fight they were hurried to the front. The main point to which they were sent at first was Château-Thierry, north of the Marne, the nearest point to Paris reached by the enemy. There, at the very critical point of the great German Drive, they not only checked the enemy but, by a dashing attack, threw him back.
This may be said to be the turning point in the whole war. It not only stopped the German Drive at this point, but it gave new courage to the Allies and took the heart out of the Germans. The troops were rushed to the battle front at Thierry, arriving on Saturday, June 1st. They entered the battle enthusiastically, almost immediately after they had arrived. A despatch from Picardy says: "On their way to the battle lines they were cheered by the crowds in the villages through which they passed; their victorious stand with their gallant French Allies, so soon after entering the line, has electrified all France."
General Pershing's terse account of what happened reads as follows: "ln the fighting northwest of Château-Thierry our troops broke up an attempt of the enemy to advance to the south through Veuilly Woods, and by a counter-attack drove him back to the north of the woods."
The American troops had gone into the action only an hour or so after their arrival on the banks of the River Marne. Scarcely had they alighted from their motor trucks when they were ordered into Château-Thierry with a battalion of French-Colonial troops. The enemy were launching a savage drive, and at first succeeded in driving the Americans out of the woods of Veuilly-la-Poterie. But the Americans at once counter-attacked, driving their opponents from their position, and re-gaining possession of the woods. On the same day the Germans launched an attack of shock troops, attempting to gain a passage across the Marne at Jaulgonne. They obtained a footing on the southern bank but another American counter attack forced them back across the river. The American soldiers were fighting with wonderful spirit, and the French papers were filled with praise of their work. As they came up to go into the line they were singing, and they charged, cheering.
On June 6th came a climax of the American fighting. It was the attack of the American Marines in the direction of Torcy. This gained more than two miles over a two and a half mile front. On the next day the ad-vane continued over a front of nearly six miles, and during the night the Americans captured Bouresches and entered Torcy.
The fighting at Torcy was characteristically American; the Marines advanced yelling like Indians, using bayonet and rifle. From Torcy the Marines set forward and took strong ground on either side of Belleau Wood. They had reached all the objectives and pushed beyond them. The Germans were on the run, and surrendering right and left to the Americans. The attack by the Marines forestalled an attack by the enemy. German reports now noticed the Americans. Their report on June 9th referring to this attack, says: "Americans who attempted to attack north-west of Château-Thierry were driven back beyond their positions of departure with heavy losses and prisoners were captured." The Americans had lost heavily, and the hospitals were filled with their wounded, but the thorough American organization was giving the wounded every care, and the Americans were still moving forward.
On June the 10th, another attack was made on the German lines in the Belleau Wood, which penetrated for about two-thirds of a mile, leaving the Germans in possession of only the northern fringe of the Wood. On June 11th the official statement of the French War Office declared: "South of the Ourcq River the American troops this morning brilliantly captured Belleau Wood, and took three hundred prisoners."
Belleau Wood had been considered an almost impregnable position, but the valiant fighting of the American Marines had carried them past it. Fighting here was not merely a series of exciting engagements, but an important action, which may have turned, and very probably did turn, the whole tide of battle. The Americans put three German divisions out of business, and caused a change in the German plans, by preventing an extending movement to Meaux, which was the German objective.
From this time on the confidence shown in all reports from the Allies in France was strengthened. They had found that the Americans were all that they had hoped for, and they were sure now that they could hold on until the full American strength could be brought to bear. General Pershing himself was full of optimism and his fine example stimulated his troops. From this time on all dispatches show that the Americans were more and more getting in the game. Repeated German attacks against their forces, on the Belleau-Bouresches line were repulsed, in spite of the fact that crack German divisions, who had been picked especially to punish them, had been found on their front. It was later found that these divisions had been suddenly ordered to that point "in order to prevent at all costs the Americans being able to achieve success." The German High Command was apparently anxious to prevent American success from stimulating the morale of the Allied army.
During the rest of the summer the Americans took an active part in Foch's great offensive which ultimately crushed the German army. They were heard from at widely divergent points : in Alsace, about Chateau-Thierry, at Montdidier, and in the British lines.
Most of the fighting during June indicated a slow advance at Château-Thierry. On June 19th the Americans crossed the Marne, near that city. But Château-Thierry itself was not captured until the middle of July. On June 29th they participated in a raid near Montdidier and on July 2nd captured Vaux. In the week of July 4th news came of American success in the Vosges. On July 18th they advanced close to Soissons. On August 3rd the Americans captured Fismes, and then for nearly a month made little actual progress, though bitter fighting went on in the country around Fismes and near Soissons. On Au-gust 29th after a furious battle they captured the plain of Juvigny, north of Soissons.
In all these battles the Americans were doing their part at difficult points, during the great French drive which was clearing out the Marne salient.
On the 12th of September, the first American army, assisted by certain French units, and under the direct command of General Pershing, launched an attack against the St. Mihiel salient. This was the most important operation of the American troops in the Great War. It was a complete success. September 12th was the fourth anniversary of the establishment of the salient, which reached out from the German line in the direction of Verdun.
The attack was fighting on a grand scale, and that such an operation should be intrusted to the American army indicated an entirely new phase of America's participation in the war. It was preceded by a barrage lasting four hours. The German troops, though probably suspecting that such an attack was coming, were nevertheless surprised. The American attack was on the southern leg of the salient along a distance of twelve miles. The French attacked on the western side from a front of eight miles. Each attack was eminently successful. On the southern front the Americans reached their first objectives at some points an hour ahead of schedule time. Thiaucourt was captured early in the drive; later the Americans gained possession of Nonsard, Pannes, and Bouillonville.
At first the resistance of the Germans, without being tame, was not actually stiff, and the doughboys were able to sweep toward the second line of any position without difficulty.
There, however, the Germans began to defend themselves sharply, which delayed, but did not stop the American advance. The attack was made in two waves and carried the American forces a distance of about five miles.
The next day the attack continued, and General Pershing's dispatch stated: "In the St. Mihiel sector we have achieved further successes. The junction of our troops advancing from the south of the sector with those advancing from the west has given us possession of the whole salient to points twelve miles northeast of St. Mihiel, and has resulted in the capture of many prisoners. Forced back by our steady advance the enemy is retiring, and is destroying large quantities of material as he goes. The number of prisoners counted has risen to 13,300. Our line now includes Herbeville, Thillet, Hattonville, St. Benoit, Xammes, Jaulny, Thiaucourt and Vieville."
The salient was wiped out, and the St. Mihiel front reduced from forty to twenty miles.
The first American regiment stationed in the St. Mihiel sector was the 370th Infantry, formerly the Eighth Illinois, a Negro regiment officered entirely by soldiers of that race. This regiment was one of the three that occupied a sector at Verdun when a penetration there by the Germans would have been disastrous to the Allied cause.
The St. Mihiel salient had no great military value to the Germans, and was probably held by them from a sentimental motive. It represented the desperate efforts made by the Crown Prince in his early drive against Verdun. Its destruction, however, was of great importance to the French. It was not only a removal of a menace to the French citizens of Verdun, but it released the French armies at that point for active offensive operation. It also liberated the railway line from Verdun to Nancy, which was of the utmost value to General Pershing and the French armies to his left. It also later developed that the French command regarded the reduction of the St. Mihiel salient as the corner stone of a great encircling movement aimed at the German fortress of Metz. The moral effect of its reduction was also notable as it was one more sign of the weakening of the Germans.
History usually concerns itself with the deeds of humanity in the mass and with the leaders of these masses. It is eminently fitting, however, that this history should record the impressions made upon the mind of an American soldier by a modern battle. The United States Government singled out of all the letters received from the front, that written by Major Robert L. Denig, of Philadelphia, to his wife. The letter is now part of the archives of the War Department, and occupies the highest place of literary honor in the records of the Marines. It describes the operation against the Germans on the Marne on July 18th, 1918. This was the counter-attack led by the Marines which broke the back of the German invasion. Major Denig wrote:
The day before we left for this big push we had a most interesting fight between a fleet of German planes and a French observation balloon, right over our heads. We saw five planes circle over our town, then put on, what we thought afterwards, a sham fight. One of them, after many fancy stunts, headed right for the balloon. They were all painted with our colors except one. This one went near the balloon. One kept right on. The other four shot the balloon up with incendiary bullets. The observers jumped into their parachutes just as the outfit went up in a mass of flame.
The next day we took our positions at various places to wait for camions that were to take us somewhere in France, when or for what purpose we did not know. Wass passed me at the head of his company—we made a date for a party on our next leave. He was looking fine and was as happy as could be. Then Hunt, Keyser and a heap of others went by. I have the battalion and Holcomb the regiment. Our turn to en-buss did not come until near midnight.
We at last got under way after a few big "sea bags" had hit nearby. Wilmer and I led in a touring car. We went at a good clip and nearly got ditched in a couple of new shell holes. Shells were falling fast by now, and as the tenth truck went under the bridge a big one landed near with a crash, and wounded the two drivers, killed two marines and wounded five more. We did not know at the time, and did not notice anything wrong until we came to a crossroad when we found we had only eleven cars all told. We found the rest of the convoy after a hunt, but even then were not told of the loss, and did not find it out until the next day.
We were finally, after twelve hours' ride, dumped in a big field and after a few hours' rest started our march. It was hot as Hades and we had had nothing to eat since the day before. We at last entered a forest; troops seemed to converge on it from all points. We marched some six miles in the forest, a finer one I have never seen—deer would scamper ahead and we could have eaten one raw. At 10 that night without food, we lay down in a pouring rain to sleep. Troops of all kinds passed us in the night--a shadowy stream, over a half-million men. Some French officers told us that they had never seen such concentration since Verdun, if then.
The next day, the 18th of July, we marched ahead through a jam of troops, trucks, etc., and came at last to a ration dump where we fell to and ate our heads off for the first time in nearly two days. When we left there, the men had bread stuck on their bayonets. I lugged a ham. All were loaded down.
Here I passed one of Wass' lieutenants with his hand wounded. He was pleased as Punch and told us the drive was on, the first we knew of it. I then passed a few men f Hunt's company, bringing prisoners to the rear. They had a colonel and his staff. They were well dressed, cleaned and polished, but mighty glum looking.
We finally stopped at the far end of the forest near a dressing station, where Holcomb again took command. This station had been a big fine stone farm but was now a complete ruin—wounded and dead lay all about. Joe Murray came by with his head all done up—his helmet had saved him. The lines had gone on ahead so we were quite safe. Had a fine aero battle right over us. The stunts that those planes did cannot be described by me.
Late in the afternoon we advanced again. Our route lay over an open field covered with dead.
We lay down on a hillside for the night near some captured German guns, and until dark I watched the cavalry—some four thousand, come up and take positions.
At 3.30 the next morning Sitz woke me up and said we were to attack. The regiment was soon under way and we picked our way under cover of a gas infested valley to a town where we got our final instructions and left our packs. I wished Sumner good luck and parted.
We formed up in a sunken road on two sides of a valley that was perpendicular to the enemy's front; Hughes right, Holcomb left, Sibley support. We now began to get a few wounded; one man with ashen face came charging to the rear with shell shock. He shook all over, foamed at the mouth, could not speak. I put him under a tent, and he acted as if he had a fit.
I heard Overton call to one of his friends to send a certain pin to his mother if he should get hit.
At 8.20 we jumped off with a line of tanks in the lead. For two "kilos" the four lines f Marines were as straight as a die, and their advance over the open plain in the bright sunlight was a picture I shall never forget. The fire got hotter and hotter, men fell, bullets sung, shells whizzed-banged and the dust of battle got thick. Overton was hit by a big piece of shell and fell. After-wards I heard he was hit in the heart, so his death was without pain. He was buried that night and the pin found.
A man near me was cut in two. Others when hit would stand, it seemed, an hour, then fall in a heap. I yelled to Wilmer that each gun in the barrage worked from right to left, then a rabbit ran ahead and I watched him wondering if he would get hit. Good rabbit—it took my mind off the carnage. Looked for Hughes way over to the right; told Wilmer that I had a hundred dollars and be sure to get it. You think all kinds of things.
About sixty Germans jumped out of a trench and tried to surrender, but their machine guns opened up, we fired back, they ran and our left company after them. That made a gap that had to be filled, so Sibley advanced one of his to do the job, then a shell lit in a machine-gun crew of ours and cleaned it out completely.
At 10.30 we dug in—the attack just died out. I found a hole or old trench and when I was flat on my back I got some protection. Holcomb was next me; Wilmer some way off. We then tried to get reports. Two companies we never could get in touch with. Lloyd came in and reported he was holding some trenches near a mill with six men. Cates, with his trousers blown off, said he had sixteen men of various companies; another officer on the right reported he had and could see forty men, all told. That, with the headquarters, was all we could find out about the battalion of nearly 800. Of the twenty company officers who went in, three came out, and one, Cates, was slightly wounded.
From then on to about 8 P. M. life was a chance and mighty uncomfortable. It was hot as a furnace, no water, and they had our range to a "T." Three men lying in a shallow trench near me were blown to bits.
I went to the left of the line and found eight wounded men in a shell hole. I went back to Cates' hole and three shells landed near them. We thought they were killed, but they were not hit. You could hear men calling for help in the wheat fields. Their cries would get weaker and weaker and die out. The German planes were thick in the air; they were in groups of from three to twenty. They would look us over and then we would get a pounding. One of our planes got shot down; he fell about a thousand feet, like an arrow, and hit in the field back of us. The tank exploded and nothing was left.
We had a machine gun officer with us and at six a runner came up and reported that Sumner was killed. He commanded the machine-gun company with us. He was hit early in the fight by a bullet, I hear; I can get no details. At the start he remarked: "This looks easy—they do not seem to have much art." Hughes' headquarters were all shot up. Turner lost a leg.
Well, we just lay there all through the hot afternoon.
It was great—a shell would land near by and you would bounce in your hole.
As twilight came, we sent out water parties for the relief of the wounded. Then we wondered if we would get relieved. At 9 o'clock we got a message congratulating us and saying the Algerians would take over at midnight. We then began to collect our wounded. Some had been evacuated during the day, but at that, we soon had about twenty on the field near us. A man who had been blinded wanted me to hold his hand. Another, wounded in the back, wanted his head patted, and so it went; one man got up on his hands and knees. I asked him what he wanted. He said, "Look at the full moon," then fell dead. I had him buried, and all the rest I could find.
All the time bullets sung and we prayed that shelling would not start until we had our wounded on top.
The Algerians came up at midnight and we pushed out. They went over at daybreak and got all shot up.
We made the relief under German flares and the light from a burning town.
We went out as we came, through the gulley and town, the latter by now all in ruins. The place was full of gas, so we had to wear our masks. We pushed on to the forest and fell down in our tracks and slept all day. That afternoon a German plane got a balloon and the observer jumped and landed in a high tree. It was some job getting him down. The wind came up and we had to dodge falling trees and branches. As it was, we lost two killed and one wounded from that cause.
That night the Germans shelled us and got three killed and seventeen wounded. We moved a bit further back to the crossroad and after burying a few Germans, some of whom showed signs of having been wounded before, we settled down to a short stay.
It looked like rain, and so Wilmer and I went to an old dressing station to salvage some cover. We collected a lot of bloody shelter halves and ponchos that had been tied to poles to make stretchers, and were about to go, when we stopped to look at a new grave. A rude cross made of two slats from a box had written on it:
"Lester S. Wass, Captain U. S. Marines, July 18, 1918."
The old crowd at St. Nazaire and Bordeaux, Wass and Sumner killed, Baston and Hunt wounded, the latter on the 18th, a clean wound, I hear, through the left shoulder. We then moved further to the rear and camped for the night. Dunlap came to look us over. His car was driven by a sailor who got out to talk to a few of the marines, when one of the latter yelled out, "Hey, fellows ! Anyone want to see a real live gob, right this way." The gob held a regular reception. A carrier pigeon perched on a tree with a message. We decided to shoot him. It was then quite dark, so the shot missed. I then heard the following as I tried to sleep: "Hell; he only turned round;" "Send 'up a flare ;" "Call for a barrage," etc. The next day further to the rear still, a Ford was towed by with its front wheels on a truck.
We are now back in a town for some rest and to lick our wounds.
As I rode down the battalion, where once companies 250 strong used to march, now you see fifty men, with a kid second lieutenant in command; one company commander is not yet twenty-one.
After the last attack I cashed in the gold you gave me and sent it home along with my back pay. I have no idea of being "bumped off" with money on my per-son, as if you fall into the enemy's hands you are first robbed, then buried perhaps, but the first is sure.
Baston, the lieutenant that went to Quantico with father and myself, and of whom father took some pictures, was wounded in both legs in the Bois de Belleau. It was some time before he was evacuated and gas gangrene set in. He nearly lost his legs, I am told, but is coming out O. K. Hunt was wounded in the last at-tack, got his wounds fixed up and went back again till he had to be sent out. Coffenburg was hit in the hand, —all near him were killed. Talbot was hit twice, but is about again. That accounts for all the officers in the company that I brought over. In the first fight 103 f the men in that outfit were killed or wounded. The second fight must have about cleaned out the old crowd.
The tanks, as they crushed their way through the wet, gray forest looked to me like beasts of the pre-stone age.
In the afternoon as I lay on my back in a hole that I dug deeper, the dark gray German planes with their sinister black crosses, looked like Death hovering above. They were for many. Sumner, for one. He was always saying, "Denig, let's go ashore !" Then here was Wass, whom I usually took dinner with—dead, too. Sumner, Wass, Baston and Hunt—the old crowd that stuck together; two dead, one may never be any good any more; Hunt, I hope, will be as good as ever.
The officers mentioned in Major Denig's letter, with their addresses and next of kin, are :
Lieutenant Colonel Berton W. Sibley; Harriet E. Sibley, mother; Essex Junction, Vt.
First Lieutenant Clifton B. Cates; Mrs. Willis J. Cates, mother ; Tiptonville, Tenn.
First Lieutenant Horace Talbot, no next of kin; Woonsocket, R. I.
Captain Arthur H. Turner; Charles S. Turner, father; 188 West River St., Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
Captain Bailey Metcalf Coffenberg; Mrs. Elizabeth Coffenberg; 30 Jackson St., Staten Island, N. Y.
Captain Albert Preston Baston; Mrs. Ora Z. Baston, mother; Pleasant Avenue, St. Louis Park, Minn.
Captain Lester Sherwood Wass; L. A. Wass, father; Gloucester, Mass.
Captain Allen M. Sumner; Mrs. Mary M. Sumner, wife; 1824 S Street, N. W., Washington, D. C.
Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Holcomb ; Mrs. Thomas Holcomb, wife; 1535 New Hampshire Avenue, Washington, D. C.
Second Lieutenant John Laury Hunt; Etta Newman, sister; Gillet, Texas.
Captain Walter H. Sitz; Emil H. Sitz, father; Davenport, Iowa.
First Lieutenant John W. Overton, son of J. M. Overton, 901 Stahlman Building, Nashville, Tenn.
Major Egbert T. Lloyd; Mrs. E. T. Lloyd, wife; 4900 Cedar Avenue, Philadelphia, Pa.
Major Ralph S. Keyser; Charles E. Keyser, father; Thoroughfare, Va.
Captain Pere Wilmer; Mrs. Alice Emory Wilmer, mother; Centerville, Md.
Lieutenant Colonel John A. Hughes; Mrs. A. J. Hughes, wife, care of Rear Admiral William Parks; Post Office Building, Philadelphia, Pa.
Lieutenant Overton was the famous Yale athlete, the intercollegiate one-mile champion.