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Curtiss-Wedge, F.; Jones, Geo. O. (ed.) / History of Dunn County, Wisconsin

Chapter XVII: Military record,   pp. 134-145

Page 137

first call, and courage in the performance of duty, not a man showing a white
On April 28, 1898, the company was mustered into federal service, on account
of the war with Spain, and saw service in Porto Rico under General Miles, at the
battle of Coama supporting the Sixteenth Pennsylvania Regiment, which took an
active part in the fight. They were under the direct command of Capt. John
Ohnstad, who is now in the regular U. S. army. No casualties were suffered.
They were mustered out of service in January, 1899.
The company was reorganized on May 9 of the same year with J. W. Macauley,
captain. In 1916 Company H was mustered into federal service again and was
sent to the Mexican border, being mustered out of service Dec. 14 of the same year.
On March 26, 1917, the call again came and a guard was placed on the main line
Red Cedar railroad bridge. Twenty-four men and one officer were left to guard
the structure, while the remainder of the company were sent to Superior to guard
bridges and ore docks.
On Sept. 5 the entire regiment was concentrated at Camp Douglas and three
days later were sent to Waco, Texas. In the latter part of the month the regiment
was reorganized and the local company became Company H, 128th Infantry. On
Feb. 14, 1918, the men entrained for Camp Merritt, N. J., and sailed for Brest,
France, four days later. They arrived in France March 10. Captain Albert
Nathness was transferred to the 18th Regiment of the First Division, the rest of
the company joining the 28th Regiment of the same division.
The first taste of battle came in June, 1918, when the regiment containing the
local men was transferred to Alsace-Lorraine, being among the first American
troops to step on German soil. They stayed there until the middle of July, when
they were shifted to Chateau Thierry. From there they were shifted north to
Juvigney. For 20 days they were in the battle of the Meuse-Argonne, which was
the longest stretch of straight fighting the men were in.
After the armistice was signed the men took part in the march into Germany
and were stationed at the Coblenz Bridgehead, where they held one of the honored
positions between the First and Second Divisions of the UT. S. regular army. The
regiment returned to the States and was mustered out of service at Camp Grant,
May 17 and 18. They returned home May 19, at which time they received one of
the greatest ovations ever tendered a local organization.
Such was substantially the account of their service in the great war as written
by their former captain, John Ohnstad, and published in the Dunn County News,
in its issue of April 17, 1924, with other data contained in this article. All of them,
however, did not return, for 22 had fallen on the field of battle. The names of
the members of Company H who went to France for World War service are pre-
served on a bronze memorial tablet affixed to the face of a granite monument which
stands in a conspicuous place on Main Street, between the post office and Memorial
building, and which bears the following inscriprion:
"To those who offered their lives in defense of their ideals and in memory of
those who gave the last full measure of devotion."
The names of the dead, each indicated by a star, are: William H. Buckland,
Dan Storing, Charles L. Owen, Lawrence W. Neverdahl, Ralph L. Richard, Albert
Amundson, Raymond Branshaw, Arthur C. Close, Stanley R. Harris, William H.
Hosford, Lloyd S. Howe, Anton Juve, Arnold Keister, Guy R. McClusky, Arthur
C. Nelson, Odin F. Olson, Clarence G. Paff, Arnold G. Peter, Fred W. Ranee,
Fred J. Rassbach, and Hedley Semdstrom. There is one other name indicated by
a star-that of Winifred Hays; he was erroneously reported as dead but returned
home about a year after the close of the war, and is now living.
This monument was erected by an organization known as Company H Sisters.
which was formed soon after the company went to France for the purpose of sup-
plying the boys with comforts that they would not be able to get at the front.
The cost of the monument, about $1250, was defrayed by money raised through
entertainments of various kinds. It was unveiled with appropriate ceremonies on
Armistice Day, Nov. 11, 1921. Exercises were held at 10:45 a. m. in the audi-

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