WWI at Home Pt 56

Charles V. Schmitt of Alta Lake, British Columbia was a student at the Normal School when he joined the Canadian Expeditionary Forces on February 1, 1916. He served in France with Company 4 of the 8th Canadian Railway Troops and was twice wounded.

Read More


WWI at Home Pt 55

USS Susquehanna
Ambrose E. Blackman of Cheney enlisted January 30, 1918 at Fort George Wright at the age of 34. He served with the 132 Ordinance Corps Company C and Company C of the 320th Field Signal Battalion. Ambrose rose to the rank of Sergeant before his discharge on January 27, 1919. Nine years earlier, at age 25, Ambrose had survived a heart attack with the help of Dr. Pomeroy of Cheney. After his military service, Ambrose Blackman worked as an electrician at Elk, Washington for many years. Albert B. Swenson enlisted in the United States Navy on May 7, 1917. Engineer ...

Read More


WWI Food Rationing

In January 1918, Life printed a parody of Hoover's restaurant rules in the form of what called a "bread and butter letter" (a word of thanks to your host): I cannot thank you for your bread, Because there wasn't any, Nor any butter, either, though, Its substitutes were many. But your pecan and fig croquettes; Your muffins, flour-and eggless; Your beef-steak, raised in a window-box; Your mock duck, wing- and legless; Your near-fish, wheedled from oat-meal; your butterine, from apple; Your catnip salad; dressed with lard; Your porkless, parsnip scrapple Composed ...

Read More


WWI at Home Pt 54

Fred Delkin was originally from Seattle and graduated from Broadway High School. He attended Washington State College, the University of Georgia, and received his Bachelor’s from the University of Washington in 1916. He taught at the high school in Harrison, Idaho, before joining the faculty of Cheney High School in September 1917 in the English department. Frederick Ladd Delkin was inducted into the Army at Seattle on January 5, 1918 at the age of 25. He served with Headquarter Company 362 Infantry. He was transferred to Company D 348 Machine Gun Battalion before ...

Read More


WWI Soldiers’ Christmas Packages

WWI Trench Mirror
Christmas packages have been mailed by the girls of the high school to 28 graduates and ex-high school pupils who are now in service. Each package contained a trench mirror, a can of talcum powder, a shaving stick, and a tube of toothpaste. - Blackhawk December 1917 The girls of the Normal School Yep Kanum club have been doing their bit for Uncle Sam. At Christmas, the girls filled and sent away to the Normal School boys in service, sixty bags. Besides, they have made many a sweater and other knitted things for the Red Cross. And while doing all this work, they have ...

Read More


WWI at Home Pt 52

Romorantin Aerodrome
Normal School graduate of 1916, John Carl Lilienthal was teaching at Rosalia when he enlisted in the Regular Army at Fort George Wright on December 15, 1917 at the age of 24. John trained with the Air Service at Waco, Texas and Long Island, New York. He served with the 825th Aero Repair Squadron at Romorantin-Lanthenay in Loir-et-Cher and Beaune in Burgundy, France from September 1918 to July 1919, returning to the States to be discharged July 15, 1919. Romorantin - Pruniers Air Detachment is a French Air Force military facility. It is one of the oldest facilities ...

Read More


WWI at Home Pt 51

Orin Oliphant was a graduate of Elberton high school and the Cheney Normal, as well as the University of Washington. He taught one year at Harrington before joining the Cheney High School faculty as a history teacher in the fall of 1916. James Orin Oliphant enlisted Army at Fort George Wright on December 14, 1917. The 23-year-old, Orin, was assigned to Supply Company 309 of the Quartermasters Corps. He arrived in France on June 6, 1918 and served at the railheads at Haute Marne in northeastern France and Yonne southeast of Paris. Private Oliphant returned to Camp Lewis ...

Read More


WWI at Home Pt 50

WWI wagoneer
Fred Erickson was 28 years old when he enlisted in the National Army at Fort George Wright on December 14, 1917. He was a wagoneer with Company C 20th Engineers. Fred served overseas from February 1918 to May 29, 1919. He was discharged from the Army on June 10, 1919 and married his Cheney sweetheart, Mabel Bedker that September, returning to farming. Herbert Francis Erickson was a laborer at the Pine Creek Dairy in the Pioneer Township south of Cheney when he enlisted in the National Army at Fort George Wright on December 14, 1917. He joined the Army with his older ...

Read More


WWI at Home Pt 49

Mark Ratcliffe
Kent E. Ratcliffe joined the Enlisted Reserve Corps while at the University of Washington in December 1917 at the age of 20. He attended the School of Military Aeronautics and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant with the Air Service in May 1918. Lt. Ratcliffe served at San Diego, Camp Dix, Texas, Ellington Field, Texas, and Wilbur Wright Field in Ohio. He was discharged Jun 3, 1919. Ernest W. Gifford enlisted in the Regular Army at Fort George Wright on December 12, 1917. He was assigned to the Quartermaster Corps at Camp Meigs in Washington DC, then with the ...

Read More


WWI at Home Pt 48

SS Bunker Hill
Arthur M. Magary was a student at the Normal School. He was from Fruitland, Washington, which is a small farming community near the Columbia River in Stevens County. Fireman 3rd Class Magary served aboard the USS Aroostook after is enlistment in December 1917. Bunker Hill, a coastal passenger steamship, was built 1907 at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After a decade of commercial employment she was acquired by the U.S. Navy in November 1917, renamed Aroostook and placed in commission in December of that year. The ship was subsequently converted to a mine-layer and had some ...

Read More