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Resting Comfortably: 1918

Resting Comfortably: 1918

        "The goody bag is nice, but I asked for a glass of ROSÉ."

June 14, 1918. "Red Cross comfort bag in the American Military Hospital No. 1 at Neuilly, France." 5x7 glass negative by Lewis Wickes Hine. View full size.


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1918 Red Cross Comfort Bags contained

One tube toothpaste, one toothbrush, one cake soap, three shirt studs, one spool black thread, one spool white thread, one package needles, one thimble, six clothes buttons, 16 pins, four safety pins, one handkerchief, one pipe, one pencil, one pad paper, six envelopes.

I was slightly surprised at the lack of tobacco or cigarettes.

Battle of the Marne

All the Doughboy hospital pictures we've been seeing took place during the last of the German Spring Offensives, the first time that US soldiers engaged in major combat activity (not counting the black division handed over to the French). Up until that time they were assigned to quiet parts of the trenches to familiarize them with WWI combat conditions. The battles the that US soldiers took part in, usually as division level rotations in and out the the line, were Chateau Thierry, the Battle of the Marne, and Belleau Wood. It wasn't until last few months of the war, first with the elimination of the St. Mihiel salient, and then the final Battle of the Argonne, that the US participated at the full army level under full control of General Pershing.

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