Soldiers’ Newsletter, 23 October 1917

Transcription of the Soldiers' Newsletter, 23 October 1917


October 23, 1917.

To Our Friends and Former School-Mates:

School has “taken up” once more . The 8:45 a m. bell finds breathless stragglers slowly hastening to their places in Prof. Greeley’s class room; clouds of smoke and clashing chords percolate through the swinging doors of the assembly room; the House Committee furtively ferret felonious offenses to fine; the fellows play Ring Around a Rosy (or Jerry, or Ruth or Phyllis, as the case may be) in the corridors, and all seems as in the days of yore. But there is a decided difference. There are two Rolls of Honor on the Bulletin Board, and over one flies the Stars and Stripes of Old Glory; and each man whose is inscribed therein shares in the honor and loyalty we pay to the flag above. The names of the absentees are constantly on our lips and in out thoughts.· Though we miss each one of you and long for the day when we may again be a united family, we are proud to have sent so large and fine a delegation to the aid of Uncle Sam and consternation of the Kaiser.

It has been a great privilege and pleasure to have our Major with us on his brief leave from his duties at Washington.  His “costume” lent a military aspect to our halls. We have had calls from uniforms as follows:

First, Lieut. Golding, in all the glory of russet leather boots, and spurs, and all the ·latest wrinkles, was as debonair and jaunty as ever. But, withal, his face wore a hunted look , and he divulged that he was Reg. Mess Officer, and was on the trail of cooks. When last seen he was driving four Chinmen by the queues down Clark Street, heading them for Rockford.

Then, Max Henderson, less glistening but quite as soldierly in his private’s uniform. He spent some time with us while waiting for the army red tape to unwind sufficiently to let him out of the hospital corps and into aviation service. He has now achieved his desire and is awaiting his call for training.

Later, came Edwin C. Austin, resplendent in the uniform of Asst. Paymaster, U. S. N., on his way to the Pacific Coast. Soon after, Mr. Garten, in aviation khaki, dropped in. He, also, is waiting call.

And just at the end of the visiting day, J . R. Martin, 1st Class seaman at Great Lakes, came in.

On another day we were regaled by a “flying” visit from Jasper Ffrench, all dressed up and looking as dashing, dauntless, and da–(let some of the co-eds fill that in) as of old. He is also waiting call for the flying school, along with Messrs. Sherwood, Brown and Henderson.

Another recent visitor was our good friend Harry Jones, who has finished the ground school training at Champaign, and has now gone to the flying school at Mineola, L. I.

Franz Puterbaugh is just about finishing his course at Champaign. Mr. Wade just reports from the Aeronautic school a t Berkeley, Cal. It is predicted that we will soon have a N.U.L.S. escadrille. Being as they are who they are, they will some day make the Lafayette Escadrille tremble for their laurels.

We have received reports from the following since our last issue. There are still some among the missing. IS THAT SOMEBODY  YOU?

Howard F. Bell, ‘17, is with the 8th Reg. and has gone to Texas.

Lieut. Cole is at Camp Grant (Rockford), athletic officer of the 344th Inf. (but HE didn’t tell us so).

Lieut. Cook is reported to be in the 19th Inf. U.S.A., Fort Sam Houston (the proverbial close-mouthed oyster is a babbler beside friend Cook). Lieut. E.C. Mills is reported to be in the 19th Inf, U.S.A. Fort Sill, Okla. There must be something wrong somewhere.

Phil R. Davis is in Ambulance Co. No. 1, Camp Logan, Houston. He is managing editor of a pretentious sheet called “The Ambulancet”. We found the copy he sent us most interesting.

Lieut . Arthur Dixon has joined the Innocents Abroad and is Somewhere in France, having been selected to join the A. E . F. at the close of the 1st R. O. T. C.

W. A. Forgy is with the 2nd Ill. Inf., Camp Logan, Houston.

John A. Hoist was transferred to Cambridge, Mass. for special instruction under French officers.

E. E. Horton , a ” five percenter” at Camp Grant, is reported as having received a “noncom” warrant as sergeant major of headquarters company of divisional trains.

W. D. Hudson, at Camp Jackson, Columbia, S.C., is in the railroad branch of the Q.M.C., and thinks Russia may be his goal.

Beau Brummel Jackson, when last heard from, was doing K.P. at Camp Grant.

Lawrence E. Johnson sailed for France on September 8th to join the A. E. F. He was one of the nine in his company at Fort Sheridan to be sent .

Paul N. Joslyn is in the National Army at Camp Grant.

Lieut. Kryda paid us a call recently. He has obtained appointment as Asst. P.L. at Camp Grant, so that he may personally see to the delivery of his newsletters, He failed to receive them while at the Fort.

T. G. Landise reports from Camp Grant “it is certainly the place for a young man to be in” .

H. S. Norton writes from the 122nd Art., U.S.N.G., Camp Logan: :I think we have one of the most ideally located camps in the whole country. It is situated on a government reservation about six miles out of Houston, and contains over 2000 acres of well drained, sandy soil, and full of pine trees. It seems more like a health resort than a training camp . I wish some of the boys could see me performing some of the stunts they put you through down here. I have had K.P. several times, and they pick out my squad almost every day to manicure the horses – some job. I am getting so I can ride pretty well, and I usually sit comfortably about the second day afterwards. ”

Lieut. George B. Peck is located at Camp Grant (so his father says)

L. V. Pierson is a member of the 11th Inf. I.N.G., and spent some weeks in camp at Springfield recently. He reports wearing a uniform built for Mr. Henke, and other minor irritations. He and his comrades stand ready to guard us stay-at-homes while you are far away.

Lieut. L. H. th writes us from 344th Reg., Hdqtrs. Co., Camp Grant, that they “all like it first rate” out there.

Marion Skinner is a member of the flying school at Rantoul.

It’s Serg. Traxler, Camp Grant, and he wrote on Sept. 25th: “I am a seasoned veteran now of two weeks’ standing, and life holds no secrets the army cannot tell. On the 13th day after I hit camp I was appointed an acting sergeant, and that “13” certainly means bad luck to the Kaiser. Our regiment is the only one of “heavies” in camp, and I suppose the Kaiser is thankful for that. If said K could see about twenty reels of the monotonous, unending , unpainted barracks here, I think he would call the war off for sheer exhaustion. I know he would if he caught a glimpse of the splendid men inhabiting the barracks.”

Joseph H. Wagner reports his expectation of setting sail in the near future. At a divisional review his regiment was the brightest hue in the rainbow.

Lieut. S. F. White has written us from Camp Bowie, Texas, expressing satisfaction with his surroundings, and hopes for a speedy move on.

Benj. Wohl is a member of the Champaign Aviation training school.

If you are not in Hospital Unit No. 12 , and your name is not included above – GUESS WHY! Will hear from the No. 12’s next time.

Major Wigmore has just returned to Washington, after a spending three weeks in Chicago. He was ordered here on special duty, one purpose being to report on the administration of the selective service system in the Northern District of Illinois. While here, he gave his course in Evidence I, five hours a week, and also some lectures yo the First Year Class. He left the following message for the men in the field:

“We look to the Northwestern men in every branch of the service to maintain a record of which all may be justly proud. This is a man-size job and every man’s part in it is essential. Never were more appropriate those stirring words of Nelson, the great admiral, just before the battle: “England expects every man to do his suty!” And America expects the same. That battle decided the fate of Europe a century ago. This coming onset of America’s forces will decide the fate of the Kaiser, the world-disturber of the present century. Let everyone remember that the strictest discharge of even the smallest duty is vital to the perfect operation of the whole plan.

“We have an inspiring leader at the White House, a wise and energetic Secretary of War, devoted and accomplished officers, and a vast army of vigorous, patriotic young Americans to battle for the cause of Justice among nations. It is a cause to live for and to die for. The future of the world’s welfare is in our hands.

“Northwestern men are scattered in every branch and rank of this magnificent host, from the Bay of San Francisco, to the peaks of the Alps and the plains of Russia. Everywhere, in any division of our forces, a record will be made for Northwestern’s share in achieving the purposes of the war. When it is over, we shall unite in celebrating the varied doings of Northwestern men. – Meanwhile, remember that all await eagerly the news of their far-sundered friends. Each must send us his item of news. However modest it may seem to him, it will serve to cheer his friends to know that he thought enough of them to write a few lines of message.

“So now, just to do my bet in the news line, I will report that my work, during the past three months, besides helping in the Provost Marshal General’s office to raise the National Army, has been mainly with drafting of some needed legislation. (1) The Soldiers and Sailors Civil Rights Bill, now passed by the House and pending in the Senate, aims to prevent injury to the absent men’s property interests, by giving to courts a discretion to stay lawsuits and to suspend foreclosures and forfeitures of all kinds, by stopping the running of the statute of limitations, by extending the time for perfecting public land claims, and so on. This bill saves the soldiers and sailors and their families from the property losses which would be the direct result of their inability to care for their own personal affairs while absent in the military service of the nation. The House of Representatives, after a favorable report from the Judiciary Committee, passed the bill unanimously; and it is to be hoped that the Senate will do the same. (2) The penal discipline of the army has been breatly improved in the last five years by the establishment of the Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth. All soldiers convicted of serious offenses short of penitentiary crimes are sent there. A psychiatrist examines and reports on all cases: and a “disciplinary

Battalion”, or probation squad, is formed all who show capacity for reclamation. This system embodies the best features of modern penal science. Now that the army is ten times larger than before, this probation system was naturally due to be extended. By new regulations drafted in the Judge Advocate General’s office and approved by the Adjutant General and the Secretary of War, each cantonment is made a branch of disciplinary barracks, and the system will be applied to thma as soon as proper quarters can be constructed. This measure shows how open-mindedly the military authorities keep pace with the best methods of modern science in every field.

“The two measures above mentioned also illustrate that even legal science plays an important part in the welfare of the army, and that what we learn at Northwestern may be of service and enable those who stay at home to do our bit in many other ways, while the real brunt of the sacrifice is borne by the men in the field.”

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