Exhibitions

44. [William Hunter's journal]

William Hunter was a U.S. infantryman in the 79th Division, which famously encountered some of the fiercest fighting and most formidable fortifications of the Western Front during the capture of Montfaucon and Nantillois, the most difficult operation of the Meuse-Argonne campaign. Hunter's regiment, the 315th, fought alongside the 316th in the capture of Nantillois under intense artillery fire by the Germans and without the support of their own artillery brigade. Partway through the operation, the commander of the 316th sent an urgent message to his superior, reading "Being fired at point blank by field pieces. For God's sake get artillery or we'll be annihilated." By the end of the day, half of the 315th regiment were dead, injured, or missing. Nevertheless, they accomplished their objective and took Nantillois, despite having had almost no food or rest for days.

Like many World War I soldiers, Will saved mementos from his time on the front, including a poem written to his mother, a list of items he had on his person, discharge papers, and even a Christmas card written by the commander of the 79th, Major General Joseph Kuhn. Will also kept a diary in which he recorded his experiences on the front lines. His entries for the days of the Battle of Montfaucon include chilling descriptions of the deaths of comrades-in-arms, including one man who was killed by a "shell [that] tore his intestines right out" and another who was "killed… by a grenade he was carrying." On September 29, Will describes going over the top while under fire from German "automatics." When two of his companions, Robbins and Snyder, were shot in the legs, Will carried Snyder back to safety.

While he doesn't mention rations, Will's accounts of his sleeping arrangements each evening provide a clear picture of how tired the men of the 315th must have been. On September 26, he reports that he "laid in [a] shell hole all night with shells breaking all around, expecting any minute for one to come in." Two evenings later, he "dug in for the night… and woke up in 3 inches of water."

 
44. [William Hunter's journal]
William Hunter, 1918
Courtesy Stuart Hunter
URL: www.oshermaps.org/map/49785

49785
45. [William Hunter's picture]

 
45. [William Hunter's picture]
[Unknown Photographer], 1917
Courtesy Stuart Hunter
URL: www.oshermaps.org/map/49786

49786
46. [William Hunter's poem]

 
46. [William Hunter's poem]
William Hunter, 1918
Courtesy Stuart Hunter
URL: www.oshermaps.org/map/49788

49788
47. [William Hunter's discharge papers]

 
47. [William Hunter's discharge papers]
American Expeditionary Forces, 1919
Courtesy Stuart Hunter
URL: www.oshermaps.org/map/49788

49788
48. [William Hunter's list of "junk"]

 
48. [William Hunter's list of "junk"]
William Hunter, 1918
Courtesy Stuart Hunter
URL: www.oshermaps.org/map/49788

49788
49. [79th Division Christmas Card]

 
49. [79th Division Christmas Card]
Joseph Kuhn, 1918
Courtesy Stuart Hunter
URL: www.oshermaps.org/map/49788

49788
50. European War 1914

This notebook contains essays on the "European War" written by Dr. Frank Crane, a speaker and former minister who wrote countless articles throughout his career, eventually publishing a ten-volume set of his "Four Minute Essays." In this handwritten manuscript, Crane analyzes the initial causes of hostility in Europe, the significant events in the war as it progressed, and America's role and responsibility in the conflict.

 
50. European War 1914
Dr. Frank Crane, 1914-18
OML Collection
URL: www.oshermaps.org/map/11595

11595
51. [Map of France with top and bottom torn away showing battle-lines of WWI]

This map shows the action and the positions held by the Allied and Central Powers from the first German advance in 1914 to near the end of the war in 1918. Towns in the east that were captured by the German Army are circled in red, and dates of capture are shown for the major towns. The solid light blue line that extends from Belgium past Amiens and south toward Paris represents the limit of the German advance up to the the First Battle of the Marne in September 1914. The blue dotted line is the Allied position in February 1915, six months after the beginning of the war. The purple solid line corresponds to the Allied lines before the German offensive on March 21st, 1918. The purple dotted and dashed line and dashed line is the position of the Allies after the German offensive to July, 1918. The various red lines represent the positions of the German Army during the same phases of the war. On the verso of the map is a signature presumably of the map's original owner and the date 1918. From the map's condition and from viewing similar maps in other collections, we believe this map was printed in Europe.

 
51. [Map of France with top and bottom torn away showing battle-lines of WWI]
[Unknown Author], 1918
Rice Collection
URL: www.oshermaps.org/map/43190

43190