Monday, February 15, 2016

329th Infantry Returns Home to Lorain County – Feb. 15, 1919

Ninety-seven years ago today, the Lorain County soldiers of the 329th Infantry were welcomed home from the “great world war,” arriving in Wellington at the Big Four Railroad depot early on the morning of February 15, 1919.

They were treated to a wonderful reception in Wellington, as described on the front page of the Feb. 15, 1919 Evening Telegram, including a sumptuous breakfast. They also marched in a parade before boarding a car for Oberlin, and then Elyria.

As eloquently stated in the caption below the illustration, “Elyria’s welcome home to the soldier boys in the blowing of whistles, the ringing of bells, the acclaim of the populace, and given expression in speech and song, not only cheered their hearts, but the hearts of fathers, mothers, and sweethearts, as they have not been cheered since they left the city many months ago in response to the country’s call, to perform a patriotic duty, to win the fight for democracy and make the world safe.

“Having performed that duty without flinching, but at the sacrifice of long separation from friends, and the privations suffered, which is the lot of the true soldier, they have now returned to again mingle with those they love, and pursue the avocations of peace.

“And so, in extending these boys, 36 in number, members of the 329th Infantry, and comprising 12 from Elyria, 19 from Lorain, two from Wellington, including the gallant Lieutenant F. L. McDermott, and three from Oberlin, we speak not alone for the Telegram, and the people of these four cities, but Lorain county in its entirety; and may the best wishes of the community as a whole be ever with them, and God’s richest blessings ever rest upon them. That is our thought and wish and will ever be our prayer and the prayer of this community.”

It’s interesting how Lady Liberty is drawn in the Telegram illustration.
Like many women on World War I posters, she’s drawn wearing Roman garb and clutching the flag. But unlike many of the stuffy women in other renderings, the Lady Liberty here – joyous and triumphant – is attractive, almost like a pin-up.

The soldiers marching by her seem to approve.

Quite a difference graphically from what had been used as Lady Liberty only a couple of decades earlier (below).
Vintage 1880s engraving
(Courtesy the

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