Flu 1918: Greene County, Pennsylvania
The flu epidemic of 1918 impacted Greene County, Pennsylvania families in ways that are hauntingly familiar today as the world fights a similar battle in 2020.The Long and Sad Goodbye: World War I Families Wait to Bury Their Fallen Soldiers
On Memorial Day 1920, most WWI families were still waiting to bring their sons home for burial. Highlighting the circumstances of Greene County, Pennsylvania's fallen soldiers, this is a brief explanation of the reasons for the long delays.The Man Who Brought Football to Waynesburg College
In the fall of 1894, a 20-year-old transfer student arrived on the Waynesburg College campus bringing with him a passion for a new pastime. He raised the $5.25 to buy a football and then began to recruit his classmates.Love Stories in Shades of Greene
Romance genealogy-style, as we share the tales of courtship from a handful of Greene County, Pennsylvania family histories.That's Our Henry!
With a face a descendant is ready to love, Henry Bowler’s photograph prompted a search that added a “peculiar” and remarkable personality to his preserved pose.
The Long and Sad Goodbye: World War I Families Wait to Bury Their Fallen Soldiersby Candice Buchanan on 2023-03-18T15:32:00-04:00 in World War I, Military, Cemeteries | 0 Comments
(Originally published 25 May 2020.)
A CENTURY AGO, on Memorial Day 1920, most WWI families were still waiting to bring their sons home for burial. There were many factors involved in the long delay.
At US military bases in 1918-1919, flu deaths were followed by funerals at home in a much more reasonable period of time since international travel was not required. However, the volume and chaos of the flu epidemic still brought about delays and restrictions for those families.
In the war zone of Europe, sick or wounded soldiers who spent their final days at military hospitals were buried in graves organized nearby and so were often brought home earlier than their comrades who fell on the battlefield, even if their deaths occurred later in the war.
Battlefield cemeteries were much more involved. The original locations were temporary and makeshift. We have accounts of the Rain Day burials near Grimpettes Woods from fellow Company K soldiers. We know that Floyd Hickman’s grave there was not located until well after his fellows had been disinterred. These graves required careful identification, multiple stages of relocation, and generally further distance to travel, sometimes from the very remote areas where fighting took place. While France rebuilt its infrastructure, trains and roads were not open to the US military to remove their fallen. American cemeteries were established in France and battlefield graves were exhumed and reinterred in these burial grounds as a second temporary measure. Once it became possible to arrange for the transport, US families were given the choice of bringing their boys home or allowing them to remain at rest beside their fallen comrades in France. Twelve Greene County boys stayed behind, either because that was the choice made by their families or because they were buried at sea or lost entirely to the battlefield.
Read the stories of Greene County’s fallen WWI soldiers through their Memory Medallion profiles.
Pay your respects by a visit to the soldiers who were brought home. See the list of grave locations.
Thank you to all who have served our country. We do not forget.
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