About my Site
Welcome to my World War I webpage! The subject of this website is about the American Doughboys; the soldiers and Marines of the United States Armed Forces who served during the War from 1917 to 1918. On this site you can find information and photographs about the soldiers, uniforms, equipment, and weapons of the United States. By putting this site together I hope it will serve it's purpose; to educate and inform those seeking information about World War I, not to mention Honor those brave soldiers from all the countries who served during World War I.
Students and curious visitors to this site are always emailing me, "What was a 'Doughboy'"? A Doughboy was the nickname of an American soldier or Marine during World War I. Though soldiers and Marines of the American Expeditionay force were also called Yanks, or Sammies( A term loathed by the doughboys), the name doughboy was very popular among the men who bore it and it came to symbolize the American fighting men who were called into service. There are many theories about where the name "doughboy" originated from. Some argue that it dates as far back as the Civil War, while others claim it came into existance in the Phillipenes or Mexico, where sweaty infantrymen would be covered with white chalky dust after a hard days march. For more information on why soldiers were called Doughboys check out The Doughboy Center. That site has an excellent article exploring where the name dougboy orginated from.
In March 2001, I created this site for collectors, students, and reenactors. It was created because there was a lack of good sites about the uniforms and accouterments of the American Expeditionay Force on the internet. During the 1999 to 2000 timeframe, I began to use the internet to search for photographs and information detailing what the average doughboy of the AEF was uniformed and equiped with. There were a few sites out there, but they were vague and still did not answer my questions about U.S. World War I militaria. Representation of accouterments was not covered in the depth I was looking for. For example, some sites would list a particular item of the doughboys' kit, but show no photograph of the item!
I wanted to fill in that gap on the internet, and this site was born. Over the years I have slowly cultivated this site as my knowledge and collection of U.S. World War I militaria grew. It has been through many changes as I have improved the site's format, photographs, and content. Plus I update the site throughout the year as I aquire new items for display. I intend to show the variety of items used by US troops used not only in France, but also on the Mexican Border. Where possible, I try to show the many variations of different items used. For example, rather than show one gas mask, I display what ever variations I come across.
One final note, my site does not cover the politics, personalities, tactics, or campaigns of the the Great War as there are numerous other sites on the internet that cover those subjects. However, I will point students in the right direction if they wish to pursue those subjects. Included below are a few of the subjects about the AEF worth researching.
General John Pershing, Belleau Wood, the Meuse-Argonne Campaign, the Lost Battalion, almagamtion- the British and French insistence that US soldiers fill their own worn out armies, African Americans in the AEF, Gas Warfare, Trench Warfare, Sergeant Alvin York
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