Lowell in World War One: July 15, 1918 to July 19, 1918

After a short break, I’m resuming my Lowell in World War One posts. This is the 62nd installment of my Lowell in World War One series which commemorates the centennial of the entry of the United States into World War One. Here are the headlines from one hundred years ago:

July 15, 1918 – Monday – Germans attacking on 65 mile front. Huns after lull of 33 days hurl masses of troops against French and Americans. Americans meet advancing enemy with shower of machine gun bullets. Yankees wearing gas masks “handling the enemy weill” in desperate fighting. Enemy attaches preceded by terribly artillery fire. Towns behind actual battle area under bombardment. 10,000 on strike. War work at Lynn plans of General Electric Company hampered by walkout. Strike calls for more pay and changes in working conditions. The annual convention of the Massachusetts State District Union, No. 1, International Brotherhood of Stationary Firemen, is being held in Lowell today and tomorrow, attracting members from across the state. Vive la France! Fitting observance of Bastille Day in Lowell. Big meeting at CMAC Hall. Patriotic addresses by eloquent speakers. Band concert at North Common.

July 16, 1918 – Tuesday – Huns launch new attacks. Germans in furious assaults continue efforts to break allied defense. Attackers repulsed everywhere in first day of offensive. Americans in magnificent counter attacks recapture villages of Fossy and Crezancy, south of Marne. New fishways. First step in construction of fishway at the Pawtucket Falls taken today. Engineer makes survey, fishway to be completed before cold weather. Orphanage children have picnic. A happy lot of boys and girls left the French American orphanage in Pawtucket street this morning for a day in the country. Organized by the St. Joseph’s Sewing Circle, two special electrics carried the boys and girls from Pawtucket street to the OMI novitiate in Tewksbury. After enjoying a bountiful dinner under the shade trees, the children spent the afternoon playing games and in sporting events.

July 17, 1918 – Wednesday – Lieut. Quentin Roosevelt killed in air battle. German losses in big drive estimated at 100,000. Offensive attempts a turning movement against Rheims salient. Another Lowell man dies in France. Private Edward A Nelson of Co. K, 104th Infantry, formerly of 506 Middlesex street, has died of wounds in France. Pvt Nelson enlisted in Company K during last year’s recruiting drive. He was married. His wife is now living in Manchester, NH. Fuel question. Lowell Textile School man addresses local engineers and firemen at meeting held under the auspices of the State Board of Education. George H. Perkins, head of the textile engineering department made a presentation on ways to save fuel in light of the predicted 20 per cent reduction in coal expected this winter. Perkins explained that high quality coal was all going to ship building and other war industries, so local plant could expect coal of a poorer quality. He said there were three ways to respond. One was to convert to oil as some plants have already done; two was to burn wood, although that is three times as expensive was coal; and three was to conserve coal (and steam), both in the heating plant and in the manufacturing process.

July 18, 1918 – Thursday – Allied counter plow. General Foch launches new attack on 24 mile front. Allied commander in chief has taken aggressive action between the Aisne and the Marne. Early reports state Franco-American forces have advanced two miles. John T Carville, of 115 A street, who was serving on the USS Covington when it was torpedoed about three weeks ago, was not lost at sea as first reported, but is among the survivors, Congressman John Jacob Rogers reported to Covington’s family.

July 19, 1918 – Friday – Allied victory grows. Americans and French continue to advance capturing thousands of enemy. Experts believe turning point of war near. Terrific fighting along whole front. City Hall news: new boilers at city hall will cost $10,000. State inspector reports the boilers are badly needed. Open air rally. Well attended meeting in interest of Richard H Long, candidate for governor. Judge Thomas P Riley and others open Democratic campaign here.

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