When I attended the World War I Centennial Commission trade show in June 2014–my gosh, now almost three years ago–I remember meeting representatives from the Library of Congress among other institutions. That came back to me yesterday when I read this Washington Post article about an upcoming exhibit about George Patton’s involvement in the First World War. I must say I know less about Patton than I do Eisenhower, about whom I wrote my masters thesis, but the exhibit apparently makes the case that the Great War was Patton’s defining moment, more so than what he did later in the Second World War. I will undoubtedly see the exhibit sometime this summer. Before I do I may have to read Carlo D’Este’s Patton: A Genius for War. D’Este is quoted in the Washington Post piece; my well-thumbed copy of his Ike biography is sitting on the bookshelf here next to me a I type these words.
Things will be picking up in the coming weeks as we get closer to the 100th anniversary of America involvement in the Great War. There will be a big event in Kanas City at the National World War I Museum and Memorial. Here in New York City the 69th Infantry Regiment will be having something in Father Duffy Square that same day. I really hope to get to that, schedule permitting. If things go as planned we will be filming the third of our three film shoots tomorrow for our documentary. We are hoping to get the film finished by the first week of April. We’ll see how it goes. I came across this collection of 1917 images compiled by the Atlantic published this week in recognition of International Women’s Day. Many outlets, especially those like the Atlantic whose provenance dates back to the First World War and earlier, will be doing things to mark the occassion. To me the most moving is number 24, which captures three French women out in a field pulling a plow. It is difficult to convey in words the toll that the Great War took on Europe’s people and infrastructure.
(image/Los Angeles Times via Wikimedia Commons)