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1917 Draft

From the Clinton Advertiser, May 5, 1917


It is not to be overlooked that the exemptions from military service under the new conscription law does not come until after registration.  In other words, every man within the boundaries of the United States, whether white or black, citizen or alien, must register, unless he be actually in the service of the United States army, navy, marine corps, state militia or national guard or an officer in the Officers' Reserve Corps or enlisted in the Enlisted Reserve Corps in active service.

The above are the only exceptions in the registration regulations.  All other men, regardless of occupation or whether public officials or not, must register.  Failure to do so, renders the offender liable to imprisonment up to one year, and registration, which will mean service if he is not exempted.

In order to prevent all misunderstanding, it is repeated that farmers or farm hands must register with the others.  An erroneous impression seems to have been spread that farmers need not register.  But this is untrue, as they are required to appear for registration at their regular voting precinct.

The same is true of government employees and railroad men.  Post office clerks in ordinary times of peace have been exempt from military service.  But whether exempt or not, in this case they are required to register.

Where to Register

The places of registration have been announced by the county officials.  They are the same as the usual voting places of the various precincts.

Residents of Clinton who will be out of the city on the date of registration, must register beforehand in the office of County Auditor Fred Lohberg at the court house.

All whose permanent residence is located elsewhere but who are now in Clinton and will not be in their home town in time for the registration are required to get a registration card from the county auditor here, fill it out and mail it to the sheriff of their home communtiy in ample time for the card to reach its destination before the registration date.  They will then receive from the sheriff as a receipt the card certifying to their registration.

Cannot Evade Draft

Under the regulation it will be impossible for any man who is eligible and not exempt to evade conscription, even should he leave the locality where he registered.  After the registration day, the sheriff or police or other duly qualified official may require any man to show his registration certificate at any time if there is any doubt about his registration in their minds.  Failure on the part of any man to carry his certificate card with him may result in serious embarrassment.

The Questions

Following are the questions which are asked and the answers to which will be noted on the registration cards:

  1. Name in full (Given name), (Family name).  Age in years.
  2. Home Address (Number, street, city, start).
  3. Date of birth (Month, day, year).
  4. Are you (1) a natural born citizen, (2) a naturalized citizen, (3) an alien, (4) or have you declared your intention (Specify which).
  5. Where were you born? (Town, state, nation).
  6. If you are not a citizen, of what country are you a citizen or subject?
  7. What is your present trade, occupation, or office?
  8. By whom employed? Where employed?
  9. Have you a father, mother, wife, child under 12 or a sister or brother under 12, solely dependent on you for support (specify which)?
  10. What military service have you had? Rank; branch; years; Nation or State.
  11. Do you claim exemption from draft (specify grounds)?

The answers to these questions are affirmed by the party registering who signs the same.  The registration clerk notes on the back of the card a personal description of the man registered.

The man registering is given a certificated, the number of which corresponds to the number on his card.  On this also is noted the precinct and the locality in which the registration was made.

The clerks will offer all possible assistance in answering the questions, but all are urged to familiarize themselves with the questions beforehand to facilitate the handling of the registrations on that date.


From The Clinton Advertiser, Monday, July 9, 1917

(NOTE: The first column is very hard to read. It is not clear if this is all the men or not but I could not find any additional lists in subsquent issues -- Nettie Mae)


Following is a large installment, nearly one-half of the list of Clinton men subject to conscription with their new draft numbers.
The list was announced by the Clinton board today, but is incomplete, as most of today was occupied by the board's force of typists in copying the names, numbers and addresses, of which there are in the vicinity of 1,900, including every Clinton man between the ages of 21 and 30, inclusive.
The numbers which precede the names are the numbers by which the men will be drafted when the military "wheel of fortune" commences to turn, probably late this week, at Washington.