FORTY DIVISIONS OF FRENCH, ENGLISH AND American troops formed the Allied Army of Occupation that was to march into conquered Germany. I do not know what the condition of the English and French forces was, but the ten American divisions which were detailed to invest the Rhineland certainly constituted one of the finest armies ever seen in Europe. New equipment was issued to the men, and uniforms were cleaned, pressed and brushed with exceptional energy. The men were in excellent health, and most of them were first-class soldiers. Rolling equipment was limbered up and carefully inspected. Fieldpieces were examined from muzzle to trail, and the animals who pulled the various conveyances such as caissons or wagons were groomed until they seemed to be in perfect condition. Rifles and small arms were either polished until they fairly sparkled or were turned in for newer ones. Part of the job of this Army of Occupation was to make an impression on the German populace which would be deep enough to dissuade them from support of any move on the part of military leaders in Germany calculated to lead to a resumption of hostilities. The Armistice actually settled nothing in the matter of consequences of the World War, determination of the so-called war guilt, or provision for penalties on the vanquished combatants. It merely provided for a cessation of warfare, which is entirely different from a peace.

We were going into a land whose people for years had taken intense pride in their army and the deadly efficiency of that army in all branches of the service. Theoretically, the Germans could have waged war once more at any time; actually, it was impossible for them to do so. Not until the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28th, 1919, was true peace restored to Europe. Not until this document was signed did the 4th Division leave Germany.

Captain Liddell Hart, writing of the march into Germany, has complained that "The advance was slow---slower than the timetable. The tardy pace of this unresisted march cast its reflection upon the vaunting claims that only the Armistice prevented a rapid pursuit to the Rhine by the victorious Allies. Not until December 13 did they cross the the Rhine; four more days elapsed before they completely occupied the bridgeheads and mounted the guard on the Rhine."

What Captain Hart has written is true. But the fact which he omitted to mention is that time had to be allowed for the retreating Germans. It happens many times that a retreat is slower than an advance, and in this instance the German forces were doing their best to withdraw to the homeland in an orderly, efficient manner. It has been said that trouble in the ranks arose when German soldiers who had been in Belgium started the march back home, but there was scarcely any disturbance in our section of Northern France.

Most of us were tremendously excited by the prospects of the journey. The war had been fought almost entirely in France and Belgium, and although we had faced the Germans, we had never seen their country. Anticipation was further heightened by the knowledge that the Rhineland had not been blasted or torn by mines, shells and bombs such as had nearly ruined the once lovely countryside of that portion of France in which the greater part of the war was fought. We expected to find a fresh, untouched land that was known the world over for its majestic beauty and that was celebrated in legend from the poetry of Goethe and the Niebelungen cycle to the "Pied Piper of Hamelin" of Robert Browning. We were to occupy the area near Coblenz by order of Marshal Foch, in whose hands the Allies had left all military matters incident to the investment of the conquered nation. The English forces were to be settled in the area of Cologne, and the French in the area about Mainz. The Belgians marched into the area about Aix-la-Chapelle, or Aachen, as it is now called.

On November 15 I went to Toul with Lieutenant Charles E. Palmer, now a surgeon in Ontario, Oregon, to buy a pair of new boots and to be measured for a new uniform. For the next few days nothing of much importance was done except for routine duties. I censored some of the mail of the company personnel, succeeded in making Captain McCarey angry by making sport of his haircut, which some barber of the region had given him, and discovered that my locker had arrived from Meaux, where it had been stored throughout my service at the front.

On the 20th of November the march into Germany began. The Army of Occupation, of which the American component was known officially as the Third American Army, was the general term for the Allied forces which entered Germany. But there was also an American "army of occupation," constantly referred to as such, which actually was an entirely new army that had not existed prior to the signing of the Armistice. This was the Third American Army, commanded by Major General Joseph T. Dickman, who had won conspicuous success with the 3rd Division in stemming the German advance toward Paris in July of 1918. It is this 3rd American Army which is meant when the American "army of occupation" is referred to by writers on the World War.

Major General William C. Gorgas, Surgeon-General of the United States Army

Railway car in which the Armistice was signed. This year (1940) the Germans took this car to Berlin.

There were two columns of American troops that marched abreast into Germany, the 3rd and 4th Army Corps, the 3rd on the left, commanded by Major General John L. Hines, the 4th on the right commanded by Major General Charles H. Muir. In the 4th Army Corps were the 3rd, the 42nd and the 4th Divisions. The 3rd and 42nd Divisions led the advance, followed by about two marches by the 4th. A new force, known as the 7th Army Corps and commanded by Major General William G. Haan, was later added to the 3rd American Army.

On the 20th of November our ambulance company went from Ville d'Essey to Bauçonville, where Captain Dobbins was relieved of his command. I took over the company in his place. That night we had luscious steaks smothered in onions, one of the few exceptional meals we had eaten in months. On the 21st we reached St. Benoit-en-Woëvre; by the 23rd we were in Moineville, where I spent the night in a building that had the date "1851" carved into the stone above the doorway. The next day, November 24, found us in Eckingen in Lorraine, where we remained until the 2nd of December.

It is a fact of historical significance that on the night of November 24 a railway train stopped at the bomb-shattered station in Metz and discharged a number of passengers. Among them were Ferdinand Foch and Maxime Weygand. The two strolled into a room that had been the Kaiser's private waiting-room, walked out into the night air puffing cigars, and wandered about the town. On the next morning Foch's old 39th Division was assembled for a great review in his honor. It was the soldier come home to the scenes of his childhood days --- days spent at a time when Metz had been under the domination of the German Empire.

"To see French troops marching past on the Place de l'Hôtel de Ville," Foch wrote, "was an ample reward for all my efforts."

After the review, the victorious generalissimo went to mass in an edifice that was packed to the doors for the occasion.

"I always used to tell myself," he wrote, "in the old days, that I should not like to die till I could hang up my sword, as a votive offering, on the walls of Metz Cathedral. Oh, I shall do it! I have promised!"

These thoughts of Foch, revealed long after the day of his visit to the city of his boyhood days, are indicative of the attitude of most French generals and statesmen at the time of the Armistice. Most of them could remember the fateful days of 1870, when German legions marched down the avenues of Paris, when the statue to Strasbourg in Paris was draped with black crepe to symbolize the loss of that city to the conquering Prussians. These men were intent on revenge. Other issues of the problem of peace were submerged. The German hordes which had dared to overrun France had been struck to their knees in bitter defeat. Revenge was the motif of Foch's reception of the German envoys in his railway car in the Forest of Compiègne; revenge was the stimulus that took Foch to Metz in November; revenge was the driving force that caused him to envisage the entire Rhineland as a buffer state, separate from Germany; revenge stirred him to rage again and again, until he was rebuked at least once by President Wilson, during the Versailles Conference.

It was this spirit of revenge, intense and unending, which distinguishes the objectives of President Wilson from the objectives of Clemenceau and the French statesmen at Versailles. Americans do not understand it because this nation has nurtured none of the age-old hates and fears that were bred centuries ago in Central Europe, suppressed at times for the sake of propriety or expediency, but always flaming fiercely and hotly at the source. Wilson had to combat the spirit of revenge and retribution at: Versailles and he could not do it successfully. No man could. Whatever hopes there might have been for the rehabilitation of a new and unshackled Germany at Versailles were dashed to earth before the Conference began. The Allies were determined to have their pound of flesh from Germany and they had it. Now, twenty years later, it would appear that they are paying for it many times over.

In Eckingen we were billeted at the home of a delightful old French couple who could remember the days of 1870. So overjoyed were they at the thought of being released from German domination that they gave us a sumptuous Thanksgiving dinner. I think they were of the higher type of French citizens, for in spite of their natural antipathy to all Germans, they spoke well of German officers. One of them had spent the night with the old couple a few days before our arrival. "Tres gentil," the old couple called the German officers.

While we were in Eckingen we went to the house in which Lieutenant Palmer was billeted. He was staying with a German family named Westphal, and both the owner of the house and his brother once had been wealthy. They had owned several large copper and zinc mines in that region of Lorraine. Mrs. Westphal was an Englishwoman, and was considerably pleased to meet people who spoke her native tongue, in spite of the noticeable coolness of her husband toward us. She could not have been more than 40 years old, but her hair was as white as snow.

Insight to the Prussian temperament may be gained from the attitude of her husband one night as we were sitting about, drinking Moselle wine and listening to some music. Herr Westphal was a skilled violinist, and we had invited Sergeant Day, the mess sergeant of our company and a graduate of the Northwestern University Conservatory of Music in Chicago, to accompany Westphal on the piano.

The German was almost insulted by what he considered a flagrant breach in propriety, for he sulked and scowled most of the time Sergeant Day was playing for him. It was an effort for him to be civil to the young pianist. I suppose it was the old story of the Prussian officer and the non-commissioned officer: an aristocrat versus a common soldier.

In the German army it would have been impossible to invite a sergeant into a social gathering of officers.

Mrs. Westphal was more gracious than her husband. The conversation soon turned to the origin of the war, and she told us that she would never go back to England because of the way Herr Westphal had castigated the English throughout the war.

"I do not know who caused the war," she told us, "but I do know that when the war began, my husband and his brother were very, very happy. When the French came into Lorraine and occupied this town, my husband and his brother lost everything. That is all I know about it."

We learned that the Westphals had a son who was about 15 years old. He had been sent further north into Germany when the news reached Eckingen that the Americans were to march into Lorraine. The reason for such caution was that they feared that the Americans would intern the lad. Actually, however, there was no such danger.

We resumed the march on the 2nd of December, leaving Cattenom and reaching Sinz, and passing through the southeastern portion of Luxembourg. Tragedy struck at us during this part of the march, for one of the huge United States Army trucks ran over two little children on the road, killing them instantly. At last, proceeding up the valley of the Hunsruck Mountains, we toiled through Trèves and Bernkastel, hard pressed by the artillery units behind us. We rolled into Lutzerath on December 15, and in this village we set up a dressing station.

On the whole, the Americans withstood the hard and strenuous march into Germany with fortitude. Their physical condition at the end of the long journey was excellent. Such a march as the one we undertook would be an ordeal even for the trained soldier, but it was much worse than that for the 2,300 new men who had come into the 4th Division for replacement purposes just before the march began. It happened that some of these new men had been exposed to mumps before coming into our division, and within a few days several of them had to report that they had contracted the illness. Other men soon fell ill, until in all we had no less than 134 patients suffering from mumps, a most unsoldierly and unromantic affliction.

Our fears during this march were that we might inadvertently leave some sick man behind. After the second or third day of travel, the collection of ill soldiers was swelled considerably, and the wide dispersion of troops, the bad roads, poor communications, strange terrain and dark and rainy nights, made our job most difficult. We had to find every regiment every night. We had to patrol every road along the march during the daytime, and we had to call at every village through which it was known that our soldiers had passed. We were extremely careful to learn where groups of soldiers had slept the previous night, so that we might drive to the place and look for the sick.

Most of the ill, I might say, were evacuated with dispatch and in comfort. One poor fellow chanced to have been left behind, in spite of the most diligent efforts to locate all sick men. He was billeted in the home of the burgomeister of a nearby village, and that honest citizen took such splendid care of the homeless Yank that when our ambulance came to take the missing man away, the soldier protested bitterly at being snatched from the bosom of his new-found Teutonic friend.

In all, 2,197 soldiers were evacuated to the various hospitals during the march into Germany, resulting in an average of 85 soldiers' being taken sick each day of march. Influenza accounted for 312 patients, bronchitis for 347, and the bane of every infantryman, foot trouble, for 326.

Headquarters for our ambulance company was situated in the village of Lutzerath, a small place lying about 4 kilometers from Bad Bertrich, a well-known resort. We of the company ventured into several other sectors while we were in Germany, but we always returned to Lutzerath, which was our station for about 5 months.

While I was in Lutzerath I was billeted in the home of a priest named Father Embser, whose brother, Captain Franz Embser, had been in command of a machine gun company during the late war. The brother could speak English well, and we had many an interesting conversation while I was in Lutzerath. The priest had taken in a little German girl, named Katrina, and had reared her in his home. She was a flaxen-haired girl about 16 years old who delighted in associating with the strange officers who had come from beyond the seas to her home. It was she who brought us a juniper bush for a Christmas tree, and who did so much to amuse us while we were in that tiny hamlet.

One afternoon, as I was strolling about in the back yard of Father Embser's house, I thought I heard some rather odd noises emanating from the cellar. I walked over to the cellar door and was peering down into the darkness when Katrina came along.

"Katrina," I said, "what can that noise be?"

"Kapitan," she answered, "Kommen sie hier!"

I followed her very quietly as she led me down the rough stairs and into the cellar. There I beheld two mammoth white hogs, each weighing no less than 250 pounds. While I stood there in surprise, watching the huge animals root about and grunt, Katrina told me that the hogs had been fed on refuse from the kitchen, and that they had been living in the cellar since they were small pigs. In a few days, she said, they would be butchered, quietly and secretly. If the Government learned about the hogs, someone would come and seize them. She explained that hogs had been kept in the cellar ever since the beginning of the war, when Germany had been placed on the ration plan.

Officers of the 4th Sanitary Train at .Lutzerath, Germany, in 1918

Much to his surprise when be returned to America, the author found that this citation had been sent to his mother in St Joseph, Missouri.

New Year's Eve in Germany was uneventful, excepting that as the old year died, from somewhere in the night there floated in to us the notes of German buglers as they played "Taps." I soon fell into the habit of going over to Bad Bertrich for the baths, especially since it was my duty to see that the men were taken there in trucks to enjoy the beneficial effects of the water at that resort. Former President Theodore Roosevelt died at Oyster Bay on January 6, 1919, and we stood in retreat at 2, o'clock in the afternoon while "Taps" were blown in honor of the celebrated American.

Since there was not much at that time of the year with which the American troops could amuse themselves, orders were received which directed that all divisions in the Third American Army organize football teams. Two leagues were formed, comprising teams of the American Expeditionary Forces in France. The winner in one league was to meet the winner in the other league, in a game for the championship of the entire American Expeditionary Forces.

The soldiers had been forbidden to fraternize with the citizens, so they welcomed the football games with much enthusiasm. Captain Hamilton Fish, now a representative in Congress from Dutchess County of New York State, was head coach of the team of the 4th Division, and I was ordered to report to him as trainer and surgeon to the newly-organized football team. Our team trained at Bad Bertrich, and as I recall it, activities began on the 28th or 29th of January. I slept at Lutzerath, but went to Bad Bertrich every morning to be with the football players. One interesting note in my diary at this time reads: "I administered to Captain Fish a dose of castor oil, for which he considerately thanked me."

On the 5th of February the football squad went to Coblenz. Most of us had dinner at the Hotel Metropole and spent the night at the Kronprinz Hotel. I was billeted with a second lieutenant who was the most profane of mortal men during the daytime, but who never failed to say his prayers every night. The next day our team played the team of the 42nd Division, the vaunted "Rainbow" division. Our triumph of 7 to 0 was keenly appreciated, for our division had gained nothing like the fame of the 42nd, although it probably had done fully as much at the front.

Our next game engaged the team of the 4th Corps Army. We won by the narrow margin of a field goal kicked by Captain Tenney. On the 19th of February we played the team of the 2nd Division, and this time we won, 10 to 7. The 2nd Division was composed of a brigade of infantrymen and a brigade of Marines, and since a soldier of the regular army is nearly always jealous of a Marine, we were jubilant at our victory. In the evening beer and wine flowed in luxurious profusion, and officers staggered about the bail shouting and bellowing at each other. One epithet that our men never tired of hurling at the Marines was: "Marines, Marines, the first to advertise!" This jibe alluded to the tremendous publicity given to the Marines in American newspapers after the battle of Belleau Wood, in which, as a matter of fact, as many infantrymen as Marines fought. The feeling among the soldiers was that the Marines had snatched all the credit for the victories in the early stage of America's part in the war. That evening the banners of the Marines must have drooped low, indeed, for the hall in which the riotous celebration took place was well-nigh wrecked. It was never opened again while we were in Germany.

The personnel of the 4th Division's football team reflected the democracy inherent in the United States Army, for the players were men whose ranks ranged from private to lieutenant-colonel. All of them had played football in college, and several of them had previously been All-Americans. Captain Hamilton Fish had played football for three years at Harvard University. He was an All America tackle on Walter Camp's team during the years of 1908 and 1909 Lieutenant-Colonel F. C. Sibert, Major R. M. Littlejohn, Major W. E. Coffin and Major F. P. Prickett all had played football at West Point. Captain P. G. Tenney had been an All America halfback at Brown University. Captain T. E. Henning had been a star player at Michigan State College. Lieutenant O. E. Smith had been a well-known halfback at Drake University. Lieutenant T. P. Moriarity had been a famous tackle at Georgetown University. The fastest man on the squad was an Indian who had played college football under Coach Glenn Warner at Carlisle Institute.

On the 22nd of February I wrote to Dr. Louis B. Wilson, director of the Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research at Rochester, Minnesota, to request an application blank for a fellowship in medicine at that institution. Dr. Wilson's reply reached me before I returned to the United States, but it was several years later, after I had been in practice in Walnut, Iowa, that I became a fellow at the Mayo Foundation.

On February 27 our football team sustained its only defeat; the 89th Division beat us at Coblenz, 14 to 0. The 89th had a fine squad, and It was coached by the great "Potsy" Clark, now head coach of the Detroit Lions in professional football. He had been a star player at the University of Illinois in his collegiate days. Nevertheless, with harder training and more attention to the game, I believe our team might have won. It was consolation to us that the team of the 89th Division won the championship of the Third American Army, and that it later went to Paris to play for championship of the entire American Expeditionary Forces.

General John J. Pershing inspected the 4th Division on March 18, 1919, and the men were on the reviewing field from 9 o'clock in the morning until 5:30 in the afternoon. General Pershing inspected the transport units first, then mounted a horse and inspected the artillery. He was a splendid figure as he rode slowly up and down the field, erect and constantly alert. Something of the character of Pershing may be gained from the fact that he missed not one man of the 4th Division in his tour. Up and down the line he went, grave, efficient, firm of step and straight of carriage.

Many of the soldiers saw him for the first time, but in spite of the pardonable tension, all remained rigidly at attention. The men impressed him, as he told us later. After inspection, the division passed in review before General Pershing. Any large military review is a stirring sight, but this one was enhanced by the fact that it was held in a strange land, with snow-capped hills and pine trees surrounding the flat, open field on which that vast multitude of American soldiers marched to the strains of No Te Vayas Zamboanga, an old Spanish march that had been General Pershing's favorite when he was a young officer in command of troops on the Island of Mindanao in the Philippine Islands.

American medical officers in the villages were required to care for the sick among the civilians in Germany, and during my stay I called on many families in our area. I spoke only a limited amount of German, but my orderly, Private F. J. Memflisch, who now resides in Allentown, Pennsylvania, spoke the language well, and served as my interpreter. I soon learned enough German to take fair histories of the patients, and to prescribe for them. All the Germans I treated were appreciative of my services to them, but they were pitifully poor. They were exactly the sort of people found in many parts of the United States, and they were no more responsible for the war than were similar families in the United States. They could not give us money, and tried to pay us in all sorts of provisions. We could not have accepted remuneration had we wished to do so, but I did occasionally accept some fresh eggs, which we enjoyed immensely. We had not been able to secure fresh eggs since we left France, and the omelets we concocted were coveted by all.

It was obvious that most of these poor German civilians were badly undernourished, and at length my spirit revolted. I had been commissioned a captain while we were in Germany, with a consequent increase in authority. I told Sergeant Day, mess sergeant of the ambulance company, that if by chance he gave some food to these poor folk while I was not around, no harm would come to him. He saw at once that even though we were forbidden to mingle with the Germans, surplus foodstuffs of the company kitchen could be given to them instead of being destroyed, and no one would be the wiser. Orders are orders, it is true, but in this instance I violated orders with my tongue in my cheek. I have never been sorry for this particular breach of regulations.

Early in April the 42nd Division left Germany to sail for the United States, and the 4th Division was assigned to the area which the "Rainbow" Division had occupied. We had been in Lutzerath over five months. The officers and men had been billeted in the homes of these German people. We had become well acquainted with them. In many instances, there had developed a friendship between the Americans and the German people, so it was with some regret when we said good-bye to them. There was one German woman who was probably heartily glad to see us go. Some of the soldiers had taught her a few remarks in English, most of which had no relationship to each other. Some of her newly-acquired words were simply full-blooded Anglo-Saxon expletives, and some were American slang expressions of the native sod. She had a dachshund on which she lavished much affection, but the temperament of the dog was not so felicitous. It would growl and snap at our pitt-bull terrier, "Sergeant Pat," every time our mascot came near. The gentle German woman assured us that her dog never would attack ours, but some of the German lads of the community swore that he would. "Sergeant Pat" had not deigned to take notice of the German dog until one evening, as a few officers and men were sitting about in chairs in front of this woman's house, a sergeant gave "Pat" a kick as the dachshund came into view. Our mascot evidently thought the kick was a summons to the attack, for he flew at the lady's pet and sank his teeth in the animal's ear. There was a furious racket as the dachshund began to shriek and bowl, but the bull terrier's jaws were immovable. Neck rigid and unyielding, he held on like grim death. The sergeant finally seized "Sergeant Pat" by the collar and swung him in a wide arc in an attempt to break the grip of his powerful teeth. The terrier merely clenched his teeth more securely, and after one or two revolutions, the luckless dachshund lost about one-half of his ear, and fell to the earth in a cataclysm of yapping and squealing.

As the animal scurried up the steps to safety, the old German lady shouted as much English as she knew at "Sergeant Pat: "God-damn't American weisshund!"

The 4th Division moved to an area roughly circumscribed by the Kreis of Ahrweiler, adjacent to the British forces whose headquarters were at Cologne. We advanced to a region that was famous for its resorts, and in times of peace travelers in search of rest and the therapeutic effects of the baths in the vicinity came from all over Europe. Headquarters for our ambulance company was at Bengen.

When we occupied Bengen, we discovered that no American troops had ever been billeted in that village. Consequently, the problem of sanitation confronted us at once. We had noticed that in the smaller rural towns of France and Germany the most prized possession of any householder was a manure pile inevitably heaped next to the owner's house, or, as often happened, the house and barn would be one structure, with the manure heaped next to it. In Ville d'Essey, for instance, I had been billeted in a house one room of which sheltered a cow. Both the kitchen and the dining room were adjacent to this room. Yet, despite these unsanitary practices, the German peasant's home is invariably spotlessly clean, for the German Hausfrau is one of the best housekeepers in the world.

In Bengen we found that many of the Germans stored their manure in a concrete basin, beneath which was a stone or concrete cistern. Water was sprayed on the manure, and it seeped through to the cistern below, carrying with it much of the phosphates and nitrates so useful in replenishing impoverished soil. The water thus impregnated with fertilizing elements was drawn up, poured into water carts, and emptied on the fields.

This water had a strong, offensive odor, so much so that our soldiers ironically called the water carts "honey wagons." Flies bred by the millions in the rotting manure. The buildings and outhouses were not screened, so the problem of preventing flies from breeding was an important one from the standpoint of health.

Our first duty was to clean up such a village, but the land was so poor and the population which the land had to support was so large that we met with a stubborn Teutonic resistance when we tried to remove the piles of manure. We attempted to induce the villagers to haul their manure away, without much success. On several occasions I had to threaten the burgomeister of Bengen with fines before he would force the citizens to prevent the accumulation of manure.

On the 24th of April my long-awaited leave of absence reached me. I had thought of visiting Italy, but I was advised that no leaves to that country were being issued. I therefore decided to go to England, and Lieutenant E. D. Bennett, supply officer of the 11th Machine Gun Battalion, decided to go with me. We took a battered old Ford car to Bonn, the railway train to Cologne, and proceeded the next day to Brussels. That tragic city was at this time in a gay, riotous mood. Prices were high, but the tide of reaction to the horrible martyrdom of the historic town during the war was running high, and the glamor and sparkle of entertainment and night life were well worth the cost.

While Lieutenant Bennett and I were in Brussels, I had the bad luck to be berated unmercifully by an officer, who, I was told, was Major General James G. Harbord, now chairman of the board of the Radio Corporation of America. General Harbord was a fine soldier with a brilliant record. He had entered the service as a private soldier in 1889, became chief of staff of the American Expeditionary Forces on May 15, 1917, commanded a brigade of Marines near Château Thierry in June and July of 1918, commanded the 2nd Division in the Soissons offensive of June 18 and 19 of the same year, and became chief of the Service of Supply of the American Expeditionary Forces on July 29, 1919.

I saw this officer in the lobby of the Palace Hotel in Brussels where I had neglected to salute him. He was a major general and I was a captain, and he exercised a remarkable proficiency in reprimanding me; in fact, I have never experienced such mortification since that misty, gloomy evening in Brussels. I thought the general was making too much of a point in reproving me for a minor infraction. I was in the uniform of an American army officer, and it was my duty to observe every regulation of the army, particularly on foreign soil.

This incident took place in a lounge just off the main lobby of the hotel. We were uncovered; that is, our bars were off. I had the impression that we were not to salute when we were inside and uncovered. The lounge and lobby were crowded with American and Allied officers. This reprimand caused a little scene, and was witnessed by several American officers. After the General had gone on his way several of the American officers came up to me asking, "What was the trouble?" and they all informed me that I was right and that the General was wrong; but that did not relieve me of my mortification.

Lieutenant Bennett and I left Brussels at 6 o'clock the next morning, and we reached Ostend shortly before noon. Ostend had been utilized by the Germans as a submarine base throughout the war, and as we shipped for Dover we could see vaguely the outline of the old British cruiser Vindictive, which had been loaded with cement and sunk, in company with two converted Liverpool ferry boats, at midnight on April 22, 1918, by the British. The operation blocked the mouth of the Bruges canal, and in spite of the tremendously powerful searchlights which the Germans had played on the British seamen, the job was done in less than a half hour.

When we reached London a representative of the American Red Cross met us at the station, and took us to our hotel. The city seemed to be in a tumult. Londoners were still exuberant, it seemed, about the great Allied victory, and soldiers of almost all Allied nations were greeted with a great show of hospitality and good cheer. American soldiers, in particular, were the objects of much admiration and respect, and we had no difficulty in finding rooms at the Hotel Ivanhoe. it was almost impossible to obtain a room any place, unless one were in uniform. One evening just about dark, we met Congressman W. J. Fields from Kentucky and Congressman S. H. Dent from Alabama. They stopped us on the street and introduced themselves to us. They informed us that they had been unable to secure rooms at any hotel. We gladly gave them ours. We obtained other rooms without any difficulty. Congressman Fields wrote me many years later, saying, "Spending a night on the streets of London would have been a hectic experience and we mighthave had that experience but for the kind assistance of you and Lieutenant Bennett."

We went to Edinburgh and Glasgow, and made a flying trip to Belfast and Dublin, where we saw Clara Kimball Young in A Glass House. I thought Dublin was a desolate city. The post office building still showed the effects of shelling during the rebellion of 1916. Ireland at that time was seething in discontent, and the effects of the bitter feeling toward England were very evident. We saw one thing that we had not observed in any other country, and that was a large number of young men of military age, not in uniform, loafing; that is, standing and sitting on street curbs. They were not friendly toward us. There was a strike of hotel employees, bellhops, waiters and so forth, so we were unable to obtain a room in Dublin. Because of this we took a boat back to London the same evening.

Returning to London, we took lodging at the Washington Inn, poked about the city a while, and within a day or so were in Paris, where we saw the Folies Bergère and managed to lose a good sum at the races. On the 9th of May I was back in Bengen.

On May 19 rumors were circulated that the 4th Division would return to America, but within a few days it became evident that no such move was to be made. It is known now that Generalissimo Foch had orders to advance into Germany on May 27, but the entanglement at Versailles into which the Allied statesmen had gotten themselves precluded either Foch's advance or our return. We remained in Germany throughout the month, but the men were becoming increasingly restless. They were idle, doing garrison duty only, and although we tried to keep them busy with drilling and athletic contests of various kinds, they were difficult to control. Once we were ordered to turn in all equipment; then the order was rescinded abruptly. This infuriated the men. The war was over as far as we were concerned and we were rather sick and disgusted with the affairs as they were taking place in Paris, we had one burning desire, and that was to return home. Never had we appreciated America quite as much as we did then.

It was becoming evident that affairs at Versailles were not progressing satisfactorily. The Allies were fighting more among themselves. It was being appreciated how complicate and intricate were the problems that were being discussed. It was evident that "The League of Nations" and Woodrow Wilson's Fourteen Points were not going to succeed. The Europeans took the attitude that America had something to sell. France would accept the League of Nations provided France could keep a vast army and forever keep Germany crushed. England would accept the League of Nations provided it could keep the largest navy in the world. Thus, the League of Nations was doomed before it was started. The various countries did not think alike; they had entirely different philosophies. It was not surprising that the League did not succeed. Perhaps France and England were right in insisting upon maintaining their army and navy, but these policies were irreconcilable with the League of Nations. Woodrow Wilson encountered shrewd, unscrupulous and practical diplomats. He was a theorist and idealist. When he first went to Europe he was hailed everywhere, by the weak and the mighty, as the savior of the world. But as time went on, he and America began to lose caste and finally were held in contempt. The following poem published in May, 1919, which I found in the magazine John Bull, when I was in London, gives an idea of what some of the English people thought of Woodrow Wilson and America:


American-made Monument
Ye raw boanes

Some Guy


President of
Ye United States of America,

Whenne ye greate Worlde Warre broke out,
And Religion, Civilization, and Decencie
Were in danger

Feelinge hymselfe atte a safe distance,
Was toe proude toe fyght

Norte toe proude toe allow
Ye countrie over ye whyche hee presided
To make millions of Almyghtie Dollars
Out of ye Combatants
In Yurrup

Ye Lusitania was sunk,
And hundreds of innocente Americans
Were murdered,
Hee was atte laste shamed into
Takynge an actyve part in ye Crusade
Ye Beastlie Hungs,
And sent an Armie of Yankee Soldiers
Toe France
Whose total numbers
Verie nearlie equalled ye sum
Of British dead
Whoo gave up their lives atte ye front
For Humanitie.

Havynge been
Ye laste toe come into ye War,
And hys countrie havynge been ye one
Toe suffer ye leaste in ye great combat,

(As is ye way of some Americans)
Tooke itt upon hymselfe
Toe dictate ye terms of Peace.

Onne hys way toe Paris for thatte
Hee was entertained atte dinner by
(God bless hym!)
Atte Buckyngehame Palace
Whenne hee studiouslie avoided
Any complimentarie references
Toe Britain's efforts.

Arrived in France,
IHee loste no tyme In raysynge Cain
Wyth hys
and hys
Wyth ye result thatte
Hee verie nearlie brought ye proceedynges toe
A Dead lock

Peace was about toe be signed
He agayne busted uppe ye Conference
Bye opposynge ye legitimate claims of
Notwithstandynge hys obstruction
Peace was ultimately signed,
And hee returned,
Toe America,
Torn toe pieces by wild Republicans
Hee dyed the political death.


O may ye coverynge sodds lay light
On hym. whoo was toe proude to fight;
And let no imp disturb hys joints
With proddynge prongs with 'Fourteen Points.'


It certainly was becoming evident to most of the men what the American Policy should be: get out and stay out.

On the 28th of June the Versailles Treaty was signed, and on July 10 our ambulance company left for Brest. As we traveled in box cars down along the Rhine toward Cologne the American soldiers were very happy. They had forgotten all their ill feeling. They were going home. As we passed through these German towns out of Coblenz the Germans lined up alongside the railway tracks, and boys about 12 to 14 years of age brandished their fists at us. They were still Germans, still proud of their once-mighty army, and they could not forgive us for invading and occupying their Rhineland. They had been defeated, but it was evident that they still nourished a deep spirit of revenge toward us, and that they fully believed retribution eventually would come to them. We traveled through Aachen, Mons, Liege, Namur, Valenciennes, Arras and Amiens, most of which were thoroughly ruined. It seemed incredible at the time even to imagine that the destruction and devastation which these towns had experienced could ever be erased.

At Camp Pontanezen, near Brest, the men were deloused, and equipment was inspected, and the money of the company was changed into United States currency at the rate of 6.44 francs to the dollar. Some of the men in the division were chosen to go to Paris to take part in the great celebration of France's national holiday of July 14, in the parade which Marshal Foch led.

Our ambulances and most of our equipment had been turned in while we were still in Bengen, Germany. The United States Government did not wish to return it to America for several reasons, chief among which was the fact that the job of shipping it probably would not have been worth the effort and time consumed. Consequently, the French Ministry of War bought what the American Expeditionary Forces left behind, and in spite of the fact that critics have maintained that such equipment was sold at a great loss, it is nevertheless true that some of it was only of salvage value. Equipment for war often deteriorates far more quickly than most other types of apparatus. To sell it to France was probably the wisest and most economical step to take.

We sailed on July 23, on the U. S. S. Minnesotan, an old freighter that had been converted into a troopship. I had a miserable cold, so I spent most of the trip by myself, reading Dombey & Son, with plenty of time to do some reflecting. Some men sat about playing poker or cursing or telling stories endlessly. I could not but reflect on the change that a year in Europe had exerted on the men I had known during that period, as I watched them on the voyage to America.

What I was witnessing was the progressive influence of warfare on the character of ordinary men like myself. What war does to the temperament of men is one of the most significant lessons the struggle in Europe impressed on me. Harmless, friendly, young men were turned killers in a relatively short time, because of the influence of the war. The impulse to kill rendered mild and good-tempered men into murderers who shot mechanically without thinking first or exhibiting a sign of remorse afterward. The late Friedrich von Bernhardi reported that Mussolini believes in the regenerating effect of war upon nations who engage in strife, a belief that is refuted by the hordes of pitiful invalids and cripples who survive some of the strongest men at the front. To me, the accounts of gallantry and chivalry in the midst of battle in most instances are iridescent fables spun out by the professional idealists and hired romancers.

The two incontrovertible objectives of war are death and destruction. It is true that in the sudden imminence of great danger, plodding and unreasoning soldiers have been transformed into genuine heroes before whom nothing could stand, but the transformation has but two purposes: death and destruction. The pleasant connivings of the militant and the persuasive exhortations of the practicing patriot come to the same things: misery, wreckage, death, mutilation, annihilation. I fully believe that in most instances war brings out the worst in any man's character. Too often it coarsens and adulterates moral fiber and insidiously achieves the ruin of what is supposed to be the noblest of all creatures. It seemed to me that the men I accompanied to France were far more admirable than the men I accompanied back to the homeland.

We disembarked at Philadelphia on August 3, and went at once to Camp Dix in New Jersey, where we were to turn in such equipment as had been issued to us in excess of uniforms, shoes and the like. I straightway managed to become involved in some government red tape. As commander of Ambulance Company No. 21 and supply officer for the 4th Sanitary Train, I was responsible for all equipment issued to the men. It was my duty to see also that the equipment that had been issued to the men was returned to the War Department. This would have been relatively simple, had all the men been discharged from the Army at one camp at one time. But they were not. They were sent to the military camps nearest to their homes, and there they were discharged from the service. Some of the men in our company went as far as Camp Lewis in Washington. Obviously, it would be impossible for me to check in the equipment of these men, for the men had already departed, taking their equipment with them. I could not leave Camp Dix with the rest of the company until I had accounted for this property. In panic and desperation I finally appealed to a Jewish officer who was in the Quartermaster Corps, and he signed a paper stating that I had turned this equipment in as salvage, thus relieving me of my accountability. He did this just in time for me to jump in a sidecar and rush madly to the depot to board the train that was pulling out for Camp Dodge. I am grateful to that officer even to this day.

I arrived at Camp Dodge, Des Moines, Iowa, on August 9, approximately a year and a half after I had presented myself to the commandant for examination for a commission. I had crossed the Atlantic, spent some six months in the thick of some of the most tremendous battles of the greatest war in history, and had retraced my steps unscathed to the scene of my entry into the army. No man was more jubilant than I when I finally left Camp Dodge and returned to the quietude of medical practice and civilian life in Iowa.

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