Packing up

April 22, 1918 - Full diary entry:“Issued steel helmets. No work.Burned straw bunks and loaded barrack bags on freight train.No mail yet. Wrote cards saying I had arrived “over there” safely.”I just have to laugh a little, although I suppose it wasn’t at all funny for Robert. “Here’s your helmet, now please burn your bed and load all … Continue reading Packing up


April 21, 1918 - Full diary entry:“Rain. Tent flooded. Went on fatigue got soaked.”I’m not too surprised by this - based on the pictures I’ve seen, the camp was a dust bowl, which would quickly turn to a mud pit. And the tents don’t look especially sturdy or very high off the ground.These pictures of Camp … Continue reading Flooded


April 19, 1918 - Full diary entry:“Inspection again. No duty in a.m.Wonder when we will go over.Rain.”These two pictures are from History of the 322d Field Artillery by James M. Howard. They were taken during inspections just prior to this unit’s departure, about two months after Robert’s. This picture is of the Secretary of War and other … Continue reading Waiting

Fatigue (and dollars & cents)

April 18, 1918 - Full diary entry:“Fatigue: Set up stores in a.m. Raked in p.m. Midday wrote to Elinore.Short drill.Played poker, won 75$Wrote to Elinore”I wasn’t completely clear on Robert’s use of “fatigue” here. I had only ever seen the word used to mean “the state of being tired” (fatigued) or referring to military clothing (fatigues). Merriam-Webster helped me … Continue reading Fatigue (and dollars & cents)


April 16, 1918 - Full diary entry:“Am in a tent with seven other Camp Dodge boys:Heisen, Hebners, Burgie, Erickson, Ikjlekjon, Green & Templin.”I’ll just apologize to the memories and families of these fine men now, because that is really the best I can do in transcribing their names. Any and all corrections are welcome. Here’s one … Continue reading Tentmates

Camp Mills

April 15, 2018 - Full diary entry:“New York City.Took ferry across to Long Island. Took train to Camp Mills.”Camp Mills was on Long Island, very near the site where Hofstra University is today. More history of the camp below.From Wikipedia:The mission of Camp Mills was initially the preparation of Army units prior to their deployment … Continue reading Camp Mills