December 2002

Access Archives

TRENCH REPORT... Thank you for all the praise and compliments for the new St. Mihiel Trip Wire format. We will make every attempt to keep the quality high . . . The Great War Society is also taking a new approach with our ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL program. Members will find our new all-purpose information/ application form inserted in your latest issue of Relevance along with a return envelope. Just fill it out and return with your dues. For those of you who aren't members yet, click here: [ Send Me an Enlistment Form!] Incidentally, the new multicolored form was designed by our President Sal Compagno . . . More from the Great War Sports Pages: In 1919, at the Inter-Allied games in Paris, 12,000 fans gathered at Pershing Stadium to watch an early American Dream Team devastate a French squad 93-8 to capture the Inter-Allied basketball title. Among the spectators at the game were General John J. Pershing, who presented the championship trophy, and basketball inventor Dr. James Naismith, who congratulated US Coach, Lt. Marty Friedman, after the game . . . To celebrate Canada's Remembrance Day, the Toronto Globe and Mail tried to identify every surviving Canadian WWI veteran. Here is their list of sixteen:
I.Herbert Baldwin
Henry Botterell
Lloyd Clemett
James Fraser
Clifford Holliday
Clare Laking
Harold Lewis
Myer Lewis
Arthur B. Manson
Cyril Martin
Paul Metivier
Peter Preet
Wm. (Duke) Procter
Harold Radford
Charles Reaper
Alice Strike

HMS Warspite
Only Ship Present at Jutland and D-Day

New at the Websites of the Great War Society and Our Friends

Click on Title to Access
The Great War Society Homepage

Doughboy Center

Legends and Traditions of the Great War

La Grande Guerra

Great War Society Members

The WFA-USA Website

League of WWI Aviation Historians

  •  Over the Front
    Currently undergoing renovation this site has terrific material for aviation buffs.

We are going to offer specialized reading lists in this section in the future. This month with help from Joe Sweeney we feature the arcane topic of Sniping in the Great War.

The Military Sniper Since 1914
The German Sniper 1914-1945
Senich, Peter R
Sniping in France
Hesketh-Prichard, Maj. H., (Father of British snipers)
The British Sniper, British &
  Commonwealth Sniping &
  Equipments, 1915-1983
Skennerton, Ian

This Month's
Special Feature

Visiting The

Ypres - 1919
Excursion Limos & Bus in Foreground
As you can see from the photo above, tourists have flocked to the Great War's battlefields since the Armistice. Now, via the Internet, you can make a virtual visit to these sites without enduring airport security. Here are some of the better Virtual Battlefield tours now on-line:

Windows Media Player Required
Silent Night

Honoring the Christmas Truce, 1914

Memorable December Dates:
  • 12/8/14 Battle of the Falkland Islands;
  • 12/20/14 1st Battle of Champagne Begins;
  • 12/29/14 Russian Victory at Sarikamish;
  • 12/15/15 D. Haig Appointed Brit. Commander;
  • 12/18/16 Verdun, Longest Battle of War, Ends;
  • 12/30/16 Allies Reject German Peace Offer;
  • 12/13/17 Russian-German Armistice.

Lots of action at the TGWS Eastbay Chapter. Young thinking Leo Benedetti reports he has now has a Great-Grandson! Miles Berger was 8 lbs 10 oz at his entry onto the world's stage on October 31st. His parents are Kaitlin (Leo's Granddaughter) and Jason Berger. Additionally, the birth of Officer Cadet Anna Christine Renton has been reported by her parents, Jennifer and Jeremy. Anna was born on 7/7 and weighed in at 7 lbs 7 oz. With all those sevens, this young lady is destined for something BIG. Send us announcements and photos of your New Recruits. Email

Paul Fussel
On the Christmas Truce

The Christmas truce was the last twitch of the 19th Century. By that, I mean it was the last public moment in which it was assumed that people were nice, and that the Dickens view of the world was a credible view. . . A wonderful ironic moment. And, they were exchanging cigarettes and addresses and exchanging insignias, treating each other like friends. It was a high emotional moment I would say. It's the last gesture of the 19th Century idea that human beings are getting better the longer the human race goes on. Nobody could believe that after the First World War, and certainly not after the Second.


Finnish Field Marshal & President

Click on Image for More Information

On November 12th AEF veteran H.C. Edwards Sr. found his final resting place in Lawrenceburg, Tenn . . . Elwyn M. Coffman, 104, Last Kentucky veteran of the war had died on October 24th. . . Friend Peter Wood reports from Ypres that he has located inscriptions for his uncle, Rifleman 47067 George Seymour Wood, 14th Btn. Royal Irish Rifles [KIA 16 Aug 1917, aged 19] at both Tyne Cot Cemetery and the Menin Gate . . . September 24, 2002: Joan Littlewood, British Theater Producer of 'Oh What a Lovely War,' died in London. She was 87.


WFA-USA 2003 Ypres Salient
Tour and Seminar

Tuesday 8 April - 16 April 2003
A Few Seats are left!
Details at: (link)
Great War Society Seminar 2003

The French Army, 1914-1918
April 11-13, 2003;
San Francisco, California;
Cathedral Hill Hotel
Complete Program Now Available: (link)
WFA-USA East Coast Chapter Spring Seminar

War Memorial Building, Baltimore, Maryland, Saturday April 26, 2003
Watch for details: (link)
WFA-USA 2003 National Seminar

Quantico, Virginia,
US Marine Corps University,
September 19-21, 2003
Details: (link)
Send additions/corrections:
Email Response

35,000 U.S. citizens found their way into virtually every unit of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) prior to America's entry into the war.
    From The Beaver published by the Canadian National History Society

The following individuals are hereby thanked for their contributions to this issue of the Trip Wire: Leo Benedetti, Jeremy and Jennifer Renton, Bob Rudolph, Peter Wood and Joe Sweeney. The Paul Fussell quote can be found at PBS.Org. Until next month, your editor, Mike Hanlon.

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