From The Lowell Tribune, Apr. 19, 1917, page 1, column 3:
Soldier Boys Leave
The first soldier boys from Lowell left for Ft. Wayne Saturday morning. They were Chester Wood, John Windbigler and Cleon Wisner. Letters received from the boys stated they had arrived at Ft. Wayne all right and were immediately sent to the barracks at Columbus, Ohio. These boys will all serve in the infantry. On Monday morning Walter Bater went to Hammond and will later go to a barrack. He enlisted in the cavalry.
These boys are the first from Lowell to answer the call of their country for volunteer soldiers, and everyone of them was anxious to get to training so they would be in a position to fight for Uncle Sam. The best wishes of the entire community go with the boys, and many prayers will go up for their safe return.
Boyd Davis left yesterday morning for Ft. Wayne, where he went to enlist and will probably leave at once for some training camp.
from The Lowell Tribune, May 3, 1917, page 4 (page 8 on microfilm), column 2:
Two More Enlist
Two more Lowell boys, Charles Tanner, son of Mr. and Mrs. Fred Tanner, and George Minninger, son of the late Mat Minninger, have enlisted in the army, both boys going into the coast artillery service. They will leave today for Ft. Wayne and from there will go to Columbus, Ohio.
From The Lowell Tribune, Dec. 27, 1917, page 4, column 2:
Is in the West
Ft. _____, Neb. Dec. 8, 1917.
I will drop you a few lines to let you know how I am. I am feeling fine and hope that this finds you the same.
But say, while I was up in Snelling and not drilling I wrote a little poem as an answer to a lady who put a lot of stuff in a newspaper, ridiculing the soldiers, so a friend and myself made up this little poem and I am sending it to you and would like to have you publish it, if you can and think it is any good.
Say, how did the Lowell ball team make it this year? I suppose they lost quite a few players, didn't they? As soon as I got down to Fort _____, I started playing ball with the 36th Inf. team, and say we had some team, all we did was to play ball. We beat everything we went up against.
Well, I must close as I want to go up town tonight and it is getting late. So if you can, please publish this in your paper.
Written by Cpl. John Windbigler, of the "Fighting Forty-first," for the boys at Fort Snelling as the answer to Mrs. T.J. Winters' charge of immorality at Minnehaha Park and vicinity.
THE SOLDIERS' SIDE
We are not ashamed of the uniform and if you are a friend,
You'll never again say a word that will offend.
It has covered honored bodies and by heroes has been worn
Since the day of the Republic, when the stars and stripes were born.
Some are khaki, some are white and all are true,
And the men who choose to wear them are of many patterns too;
Some are sons of wealthy parents, some are college graduates.
Some have many virtues, some are simply reprobates.
We have many skilled mechanics, men of brain and loyal letters, who
Have loyally served their country that they are a credit to.
No, indeed, they are not all angels; blackguards? yes, we've some of those,
But when they came in the service they all wore civilian clothes.
Men of all kinds when they're drinking misbehave, act rough and swear.
Drunken soldiers or civilians are disgusting everywhere.
Grant us then your kind forbearance and we'll appreciate it more,
Than a lot of noisy cheering when we're leaving for a war.
We have sat with you in public and smelled your whiskey breath,
Heard remarks insane and silly, boring us to death.
Though we offered no objection when in theatres we met
Yet you think you should exclude us from your most exclusive set.
If you meet us out in public on the streets or anywhere
We don't meet with sneering glances or a patronizing stare.
We have an honored calling, as garments plainly show;
You may be thief or parson--how on earth are we to know?
We don't care what your profession, occupation, what you do.
When you're looking at a soldier and he's looking back at you,
Who is there to judge between as we stand there man to man?
Only One, The God Almighty, name another if you can.
So drop your proud and hasty bearing and your egotistic pride,
Get acquainted with the soldier and the heart and soul inside.
Try to test and analyze him, criticize him through and through.
And you'll very likely find him just as good a man as you.