IOWA IN THE WORLD WAR
Under the direction of Governor William L. Harding,
Commander in Chief, Iowa sent into the Federal Service during the war
with the Central powers, 1917-1919, about 98,000 soldiers; 10,000
sailors and 600 Marines; all of whom accredited themselves honorably,
reflecting luster upon the state.
The 98,000 soldiers comprised 9,717 National Guardsmen;
68,512 selected service men; and the remainder enlistments in the
Guard, after federal draft August 6, 1917, the Regular Army, and
officers commissioned from civil life.
When this is written May 17, 1919, it is estimated that
the total losses, killed in action, died of wounds, accidentally killed
and died from disease, are about 3,300 or 3 per cent, nearly the same
as the per cent of losses in the Spanish American war, as against a
percentage of losses in the Civil war of 17 per cent.
The general supervision of securing these men and
sending them into Federal Service devolved upon Adjutant General Guy E.
Logan until July 1918, when General Logan entered the Federal Service.
After this date the work was completed by Adjutant General Louis G.
On April 1, 1917 when it appeared certain that a
state of war would be declared by the Congress against the Central
Powers the military strength of Iowa consisted of 2,242 Iowa National
Guardsmen, partially disorganized because of recent service on the
Mexican Border. The ranks of the three regiments of Infantry, one
squadron of Cavalry, three batteries of Field Artillery and auxiliary
troops were thinned because of the refusal of men to take a new Federal
With the declaration of a state of war, the ranks of
the Guard were quickly filled and new units organized. They were called
into service by Governor Harding on July 15, 1917, mustered into
service during July and drafted as organizations into Federal service
August 5, 1917.
The Iowa National Guard organizations, with their federal designations
were as follows:
Headquarters First Iowa Brigade, reorganized
into the 67th. Brigade Headquarters, 34th Division, arrived at
Cody, New Mexico, August 25, 1917; arrived in Camp Dix, N.J. September
1, 1918; arrived at St. Medard, La Brede Area, near Bordeaux, France,
October 12, 1918. Skeletonized at Le Mans, France, November 2, 1918.
Headquarters returned to United States and mustered out of the service
at Camp Grant, Illinois, February 12, 1918.
First Iowa Infantry, reorganized into the 133rd
Infantry arrived at Camp
Cody, New Mexico, October 1st and 2nd, arrived
at Camp Dix, New Jersey, September 1, 1918, arrived at St. Selve,
France, October 8, 1918. Skeletonized at Le Mans and St. Aignan, France
November 1st and November 12th, 1918. Headquarters returned to United
States and discharged from the service at Camp Grant, Illinois,
February 12, 1919.
Second Iowa Infantry
reorganized into the 125th, and 126th Machine Gun Battalion and 133rd
Infantry, arrived in Camp
Cody, New Mexico, August 30, 1917; arrived at
Camp Dix, New Jersey, August 27th to 31st 1918; arrived in La Brede
Area, France, October 10th and 12th. Machine Gun Battalions
skeletonized at Le Mans, France, November 10 to November 15th, 1918.
Headquarters returned to United States and discharged from the service
at Camp Grant, Illinois, February 12, 1919.
Third Iowa Infantry reorganized into the 168th United
States Infantry, 42nd or Rainbow Division, arrived at Camp Mills, Long
Island, September 13, 1917; arrived Liverpool, December 1, 1917.
Arrived Rimauccourt, France, December 12th, 1917. Entered the line on
February 23, 1918. Participated in battles at Badonviller, Lorraine,
Champagne, Chateau Thierry, Sergy, St. Mihiel and Argonne. Returned to
United States April 25, 1919. Mustered out at Camp Dodge, Iowa, May
16th and 17th, 1919.
First Iowa Cavalry, reorganized into the
Headquarters Troop, 34th Division, 125th Machine Gun Battallion, 133rd
Infantry and 109th Ammunition Train. 34th Division arrived Camp
New Mexico, September 29, 1918; arrived Camp Dix, New Jersey, August
29th to September 2, 1918; arrived in France, October 5th to October
20th. Returned to United States and mustered out January 18th and
February 12th at Camps Dodge and Grant.
First Regiment Field Artillery arrived at Camp
Cody, October 2, 1917; assigned to 34th Division; arrived Camp
Doniphan, Oklahoma, July 4th, 1918; arrived Camp Upton, Long Island,
September 7, 1918; arrived at De Souge, France, October 25, 1918;
returned to United States and mustered out at Camp Dodge, Iowa, January
15th to January 20th, 1919.
First Separate Battalion Engineers reorganized
into 109th Engineers, 34th Division; arrived at Camp
Cody August 26th,
September 28 and October 11, 1917; arrived at Camp Dix, New Jersey,
September 1, 1918; arrived France, October 2, 1918. Still in service
May 17, 1919, at Mesves, France.
Company C Signal Corps, reorganized into
the 109th, Field Signal Battalion, 34th Division; arrived Camp
October 2, 1917; arrived Camp Dix, September 2, 1918; arrived Beautiran,
France, October 29, 1918. Still in service May 17, 1919 at Chitenay,
Ammunition Train, Horse section,
reorganized into the 109th Ammunition Train, 34th Division; arrived at Camp
Cody, New Mexico, September 29, 1917; arrived Camp Dix, New
Jersey, August 31, 1919. Arrived at De Souge, France October 28, 1918.
Returned home to United States and mustered out at Camp Dodge, Iowa,
January 18, 1919. Train Headquarters and Headquarters detachment
returned to Iowa May 6, 1919 for muster out.
Field Hospitals 1 and 2 and Ambulance
Companies 1 and 2 assigned to 109th Sanitary Train, 34th Division,
arrived at Camp
Cody, October 4, 1917; arrived Camp Dix August 29,
1918; arrived France, November 1, 1918. Skeletonized at Le Mans, France
November 20, 1918.
Work upon the Selective Service law commenced in May,
1917 and the first registration took place June 5, 1917; the second
registration on June 5, 1918; the third on August 24, 1918 and the
fourth on September 12, 1918. The total registrations were as follows:
|June 5, 1917
||68,192 Class 1 Fighting men
||13,151 Class 1 Fighting men
|September 12, 1918
||36,247 Class 1 Fighting men
||117,590 Class 1 Fighting men
Of this number of Class 1 men the 112 Local
Boards in Iowa inducted and sent to Camp 68,512 men, leaving 49,696 men
ready to go when the Armistice was signed.
During the administration of the draft extending
from May 18, 1917 to May 13, 1919, when the State Draft Headquarters
were closed, about 11,666 Iowa men and women assisted in the
administration of the work:
|State Headquarters officers and clerks
|Registrants 1st and 3rd registration
|Members first registration boards
|Members District Boards and advisors
|Local Board members and Chief clerks
|District and Local Board clerks
|Government Appeal Agents
|Medical Advisory Board Members
|Legal Advisory Board Members
|Associate Members Legal Advisory Boards
|Additional Examining Physicians
|Dental Surgeons for Local Boards
|Members, Boards of Instruction
Total Number officials and employees
The final financial report of Major Roy W. Snell,
U.S.A. Disbursing Officer and Agent for Iowa added to previous
expenditures shows a total expenditure of $423,045.52, an average cost
per registrant in Iowa of 80 cents and an average cost per inducted man
of $6.17. The Second Annual report of the Provost Marshall General
shows the nation average per man inducted as $7.90.
In addition to Individual inductions, enlistments
in the Army, Navy and Marine Corps, of which no accurate record is
available at this time, Iowa sent inducted men to camps as follows:
|Camp Dodge, Iowa
|Fort Benjamin Harrison, Indiana
|Camp Alfred Vail, New Jersey
|Camp Dix, New Jersey
|Camp Meade, Maryland
|Fort Meyer, Virginia
|Camp Hancock, Georgia
|Camp Lee, Virginia
|Iowa State College, Ames
|Iowa State University, Iowa City
|Des Moines College, Des Moines, Iowa
|Van Couver Barracks, Washington
|Armour Institute, Chicago, Illinois
|Mooseheart College, Illinois
|Sweeney Auto School, Kansas City, Missouri
|Rahe Auto School, Kansas City, Missouri
|Sioux City High School, Sioux City, Iowa
|Camp Gordon, Georgia
|Camp Pike, Arkansas
|Camp Mabray, Texas
|Camp Forrest, Georgia
|Jefferson Barracks, Missouri
|Syracuse, New York
|Kelley Field, Texas
|Camp Funston, Kansas
|Fort Riley, Kansas
|Columbus Barracks, Ohio
|New York University, New York
|Wisconsin University, Madison, Wisconsin
|Fort Worden, Washington
|Camp Humphrey, Virginia
|Washington Barracks, Washington D.C.
When the Armistice was signed on November 11, 1918 the following men
were entraining for the camps named:
|Camp Greenleaf, Georgia
|Fort McArthur, California
|Camp Dodge, Iowa
Of this number about 600 actually entered the service for a day or two
and were discharged from the Army before reaching camp, the day the
armistice was signed, November 11.
Camp Commanders assigned these selected men to organizations and the
Adjutant Ceneral of Iowa has been unable to secure the names of the
organizations in which they served, Camp Commanders uniformly asserting
that they can not give the data. It is known that several thousand
selected men sent to Camp Dodge served in France with the 88th
Division, but thousands of Iowa men were transferred from camp to camp
and from organization to organization until it is impossible for the
Adjutant General of Iowa to say at this time where they served a
majority of their time in the Army. This record will be secured later
from the Adjutant General of the Army for compilation by the Iowa War
Roster Commission, which under the provisions of H.F. 362 by Williams,
is at work gathering the individual record of each soldier, sailor and
marine from IOwa.
A compilation of data secured from the 112 Local Selective Service
Boards in Iowa in August 1918, while these boards were sending men to
camp gives an incomplete record of the effect upon the farming
industry. At that time it showed:
|Farmers and farm laborers inducted
|Men in other occupations inducted
This shows that of the men inducted .51 87 per cent were farmers or
farm laborers, but it does not take into account the National
Guardsmen, nearly 10,000, practically all of whom were from the cities
The State census of 1915 shows the urban population to be 54.1 percent,
a trifle more than half of the total population of the state. It
therefore appears that the rural and urban districts of the states,
each with about half the population furnished almost an equal number of
men for the army.
-----the foregoing report was prepared by Frank E. Lyman, lieutenant
colonel and aide on the Governor's staff.