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Edward James Bogh, World War I soldier

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The Lincoln Republican

By Will De Vinny

 

Lincoln, Kansas

Feb. 19-‘19

 

The State Historical Society

Topeka, Kansas

 

Sirs: I am sending you information regarding Pvt. Edward J. Bogh for use in compiling a history of Kansas boys during the late war as you requested some time ago thru the papers.

Edward James Bogh was born in Lincoln Center, Kansas, July 8-1895

Son of Minnie and Simon H. Bogh. Was married to Dorinne Holcouch De Vinny in August of 1917. He entered service Oct. 12,

 

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The Lincoln Republican

By Will De Vinny

 

1916 being one of the selective draft and was stationed at Camp Funston where he received his military training. Was sent to Camp Mills April 12 – 1918 and sailed for England on April 23-1918. Arrived in France May 9 after spending a few days in a rest camp in England. Pvt. Bogh was made a gunner in an automatic squad after receiving instructions in a French school. From Camp Funston on the trip east he was acting Corp’l and is now Company Clerk of Co. G. 140th Infantry – 35th Division, American E. F. his present address.

 

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The Lincoln Republican

By Will De Vinny

 

Pvt. Bogh received his high school education in Lincoln and two and a half years was spent at K.S.A.C. Manhattan, Kansas. Also find enclosed newspaper clipping that may be of some use to you. Will enclose a snap taken just before going to Camp Mills.

Wishing you success in your work, I am

Sincerely

Mrs. Edward J. Bogh

 

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Sherman Put It Very Mild

 

War is Worse than That Writes a Lincoln Boy

 

That war is worse than Sherman said is the declaration of Private Edward Bogh, a Lincoln boy, in a letter to his wife. He went through one of the big drives but although there were bullet marks all about his uniform and apparel, he escaped safely. He writes.

“This is the first chance I have had to write for a long time and I am mighty lucky to be able to do it. Sherman didn’t know what war is, why, hell isn’t in it. I have seen some terrible things. I am ten years older than I was before the big drive and pretty weak, but I’m alive. I have no words to picture the awfulness of that struggle. We drove the Huns back and took places which the English and French said could not be taken. Some Boche prisoners said we were crazy to face machine guns and artillery like we did. I have a few dents in my helmet, a bullet hole in my gas mask, several in my pack and my rifle was blown out of my hand but here I am. For five days we lived on a can of corned beef and a little hard tack and I slept for a couple of days in a hole full of water. My nerves were all shot to pieces. I slept under a roof last night for the first time in ages. I am longing for the time when the statue of liberty in New York comes again within range of my vision. Salina Journal-Nov. 13-1918.

 

Lincoln Soldier has Thrilling Experience in Argonne Fight.

 

Extracts from letter from Private Edward Bogh, Co. G, 140th Inft., AEF.

This is the first chance I’ve had to write for some time and I am mighty lucky to be able to do it. I guess you have been reading about what the ---- did in the big drive. I am about 10 years older and pretty weak but I’m alive anyway (4 lines deleted) I have surely been thru the mill and I couldn’t begin to tell you how terrible it all was but we certainly drove them back and took places that the French and british said couldn’t be taken. Some Boche prisoners said we were crazy to face machine guns and artillery ltke we did. I have a few dents in my helmet, a bullet hole in my gas mask, several in my pack and my rifle was blown right out of my hand but here I am and will have to tell you some of the things I saw when I come home. Sherman did not know what war was at all—it’s worse than hell and I have surely seen terrible things. For five days we lived on a can of corned beef and a few hard tack and I slept a couple of nights in a hole full of water but I haven’t even a cold. The night we were relived I received sixteen letters from you and they surely did put new life into me; my nerves were all shot to pieces and I surely did need them.

The second night out we were camped on a hill and I ran across Will (Caughey) and Harve Hall and you can just bet we were happy boys and made good use of the time we had together. I was mighty glad Will wasn’t hurt but I do not know where his regiment is now.

I slept under a roof last night on some hay for the first time in ages and maybe you don’t think I did some fine sleeping. I hope we stay here a few days so we can get rested up again. We’re getting more than we can eat so I ought to soon be back in shape again. It is sure lonesome though without my pals and I hope they will come back to the company again soon.

Today I’ve been busy cleaning mud off my clothes, they were a solid mass of mud and I nearly feel like a new man since I have shaved and washed up. I hear that to-morrow we will all get a hot bath and will soon get a new outfit of clothes. I broke my watch the first time we went “over the top” and I hate it mighty bad. I’ll surely miss it and think that I will not be in a town where it can be fixed. It certainly kept good time and I could have sold it several times for as much as $30. but it was worth more than that to me.

I am mighty lucky to be all safe and sound. I don’t see how I ever got out without a scratch, it was some battle. The tank drivers said it had the Chateau Thierry drive beat all to pieces and you know that is saying something. We advanced so fast at times that (six words deleted) but I guess you have read all about it by this time. If you find anything in the papers about the 140th Infantry. I wish you would send me some clippings. You people at home really know more about how the war is going on than we do right here in it. I haven’t heard a word since we left the front but I know it is lively by the heavy shelling I can hear. We’ve sure got them on the run and I hope nothing will stop us because a few drives like that will bring us home soon and I am sure looking forward to that time when we will get in sight of the Statue of Liberty again. – Lincoln Republican No. 7-1918

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