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Young Men Drafted for WWI

Written by Dick Perue

With the onslaught of World War I 100 years ago, the “Rawlins Republican” ran the following article on the front page of its Nov. 8, 1917 edition:

Last Contingent:

Fourteen More Young Men Left Rawlins Last Saturday for Camp Lewis at American Lake

With the departure of 14 young men from Rawlins last Saturday morning for Camp Lewis, Carbon County has now filled its first quota of 119 men for the selected army.

The 14 men called to report in Rawlins to go as the fourth contingent all reported last Thursday. They remained in the city until Saturday morning when they departed.

Friday evening on No. 3 (U.P. train), the Hanna band again came up to Rawlins. They marched to the Ferris Hotel where several selections were played pending the preparation of the banquet, which was served by the Elks to the selected boys, their wives and relatives and the Hanna band boys. Following the banquet the band again rendered several selections at the Hotel and in the streets before going to the Elks Home where they furnished the music for the farewell dance for the boys.

Every one of the boys who formed the fourth contingent attended this dance given on Friday night by the Elks in their honor.

On Thursday and Friday evenings, many of the boys took advantage of Manager Anderson’s patriotic invitation for them to attend the picture show free of cost. The production of “The Slacker” on Friday night was especially enjoyed by the boys who attended.

The Republican does not feel competent to express to the members of the Hanna band our deep gratitude and appreciation for their patriotic action in coming to Rawlins again and helping us to entertain properly each contingent that has left this city for Camp Lewis. It is sufficient for us to say that the action of the Hanna boys in coming to Rawlins as they have done will always be remembered, not only by every resident of this city but, what is more, by every one of our boys who have departed to enter the service of their country.

In addition to the 14 boys who left last Saturday, one representative from this county, Fred Vigil, untrained from Colorado, and another young man, John S. Neal, reported at the camp several days before the other boys left this city.

The fourteen boys who left here on Saturday morning are: Morgan Johnson – Encampment, Angus England – Saratoga, Lee Wilcox – Saratoga, John C. Gunning – Rawlins, Vernon Alspaugh – Dad, John Robertson – Rawlins, Edelbert Strickland – Rawlins, Clyde V. Martin – Rawlins, Frank O. Engstrom – Rawlins, Ambrose Hicks – Hanna, Jack Tapers – Rawlins, Anton Juguvich – Hanna Kester Campbell – Hanna and John Boberg – Elk Mountain.

Author’s note   Angus England was the first Carbon County boy killed during World War I. The local American Legion Post 54 bears his name.