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Private Joseph Martin, Franklin Tribune 11-7-1918

Carl Joseph Martin
January 22, 1890 – October 28, 1918
Killed in Action in France.

Word has been received that Private Joseph Martin, who enlisted in the United States army May 29th, last, and sailed for France in August, was killed in Action on October 28th.
Joseph Martin was born January 22, 1890, in Camp Township. He was reared by his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. John Savela, both of whom are now dead. He was an industrious and well liked young man. The surviving relatives are: one sister, Mrs. Oscar Stonelake, and one brother, William Martin of Bandon. The sympathy of this communkity is tendered the sorrowing relatives.

Letter From Joseph Goeddertz, Bird Island Union, 11-7-1918

Letter From France: Joe Goeddertz Take Part in Great Drive Against Huns

From Kossuth Co. Advance, How a Kossuth county boy who only six months ago was peacefully farming in Minnesota, helped chase the Huns “somewhere in France” five months later is told in vivid letter received last week by Mr. John Goeddertz, of Algona, from their son Joe.

Joe lived four years near Bird Island, Minn., where his sister, Mrs. F. E. McCorkle, also resides, when he received his call to the colors last spring. On April 28 he was sent to Camp Dodge. After about 2 weeks there, he was transferred to Camp Travis, Texas, where he remained six weeks. In June he embarked for overseas, and spent the Fourth of July in England.

Father Escaped From Germany

It adds to the interest of Joe’s story to learn that his father was German born and served two years in the German Army. In fact, the elder Goedderts, with two companions left the army to come to the country. That was in 1866, and the thrilling story of the escape of the three comrades will bear telling sometime.

Joe’s letter, which was dated September 18, follows:

“Well, thank God, I’m still with the living and well. I have just got back from a five day drive and it sure was the awfulest thing I ever saw.

Drive Boches Five Miles

“We went to the front in a rain. Most of the night we marched in mud. At about five o’clock in the morning we went over the top. By that time we had become wet through to the skin and were so covered with mud that we looked like clay balls.

“We drove the Boches back five miles, killed many and took I don’t know how many prisoners, but a large number, for we went so fast they couldn’t get away from us. They left may guns and a great deal of ammunition behind them.

I have talked with some of the prisoners, and they said the American boys were the worst fighters they ever saw. Most of the prisoners are old men with beards or young boys. One of them told me the Germans were calling out boys only 14 year old and were even using women.

Women Fight Like Hell

“We captured women carrying machine gun ammunition, and also found some chained to their machine guns. Some fought like hell, but most of them gave up when we rushed them.

“The Germans are still going back, but I don’t know how far they went. It must be some distance, however, for we can no longer hear the guns. Just now are resting. How soon we shall go back into the fight none of us know.

“It is hell – more than hell – to take part in a drive; but I must say we haven’t lost as many men as might have been expected.

No Man’s Land Disappears

“The Germans we drove back had a good many concrete dugouts, with trenches in some places, and more barbed wire than one would think there could be in the world. But nothing stopped us and there isn’t any No Man’s Land any more.

“I think of you all when the bullets and shrapnel are flying out there ahead of us, but when we get into action we are too busy with what to do next to give a thought to anything else.” Joe is a member of the 359th U. S. Infantry Machine Gun Co.

Four Sons in Army, Father in Civil War, Buffalo Lake News, 11-8-1918

It may be of interest to the readers of your paper to learn of the whereabouts of my sons. When war was declared in Europe I could scarcely believe it and dreaded such a war, for having gone through the Civil War I knew what another war would mean.

But when Uncle Sam declared war in defense of the United States for which I fought four long years, I wanted my boys to do their duty toward their country.

Oscar Schmidt

Four are now in service, Oscar enlisted. When he chose between corporal or truck driver for the coast artillery, he accepted corporal for “overseas” duty – Battery C. 36th artillery, Ft. Barrancas, Florida.

Walter Schmidt

Walter was awarded a “chevron” inside of two weeks. He writes that he has charge of an anti-air craft gun and a squad of men and is now in France.

Luvern (no photograph of him) volunteered in the S.A.T.C. at Northwestern College, Naperville, Illinois. He is just recovering from an attack of the influenza.

Waldermar (no photograph of him) is in England, Co. E. 343rd Infantry, on the Intelligence Division. He says it’s one of the most dangerous positions in the army.

Henry Schmidt, Commander of Post 85

Letter From Ernest Wallner, Buffalo Lake News, 11-8-1918

Ernest Wallner
July 4, 1896 – July 11, 1970
Born in Buffalo Lake, son of Christian & Bertha (Pofahl) Wallner. Entered service at Olivia, Minnesota 02/25/1918, sent to Camp Dodge, IA Feb. 27, 1918; assigned to Co. B, 55th Eng’s; transferred to Camp Custer, May 14, 1918; transferred to Ca,p Merritt, June 20, 1918; promoted to 1st Cl. Priva., Nov. 2, 1918; overseas July 2, 1918. Take from the book Renville County In World War I: 1917, 1918, 1919 published by the Olivia Times.

The following letter was received by Virgil Wallner from his cousin, Ernest Wallner, now in France.

France, Sept. 15th, 1918

Dear Cousin:

Your most welcome letter came to me yesterday, together with one from cousin, Lillian, and I am taking great pleasure in answering it this afternoon. To be sure your letter was thoroughly enjoyed. Letters over here are quite valuable and you can bet when one shows up it looks mighty inviting. I feel that I have a big job when I undertake to write a long letter as you request. Owing to the strict censorship on letters before they leave for the states, I will not be able to write a lengthy missive. However one may write almost anything as to what he has seen, but is barred from giving out anything like military information. Well I will try to give you some idea of how the French live and so on. I have been to towns on Sundays three times, and these towns are from 20,000 to 60,000 and are considered to by some of the best little cities in France. These towns seem to be all of the same type, narrow streets, open sewers, stone buildings with tiled roofs and no paved streets and no street cars. The trains are toys compared with those in the United States. The people generally are of the poorer class financially., the farmers have a few good cattle and large flocks of sheep with a few goats in the bunch. Heavy one-horse carts are used. Eggs are a precious article and they charge from 4 to 5 francs a dozen for them. I am several hundred miles from the fighting lines and things are about as quiet here as in camp in the states. I am well and will close with best regards to all.

Your Cousin, Ernest

Redeem War Savings Stamp Pledges, Fairfax Standard, 11-7-1918

1917-1918 War Savings Stamp

Patriotic people of Minnesota are out to make a record in the redeeming of pledges for War Savings Stamps. They have already proven themselves loyal by pledging approximately $40,000,000. Of this amount there is still $18,000,000 outstanding in unredeemed pledges. All of these pledges must be redeemed in order to put Minnesota in its proper place among the patriotic states of the Union.

The State Committee has just launched a campaign in which a check is being made upon every unredeemed pledge in the State. Special representatives have been assigned to each County, and every place where pledges have been lodged for collection will be visited and the data in connection with unredeemed pledges will be taken by these representatives and same will be investigated through the State Committee with a determination by the Committee that there will be no unredeemed pledges outstanding by December 31st, 1918, at which time the 1918 campaign for the State closes.