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“Fine day but we did not enjoy it much… One shell wounded three this evening. Have dysentery & fever. Am so weak I can hardly get around.” (Diary, 10/27/1918)

   Norvel Preston Clotfelter
Image of Norvel Preston Clotfelter
Detail from a full-length studio portrait of Norvell Clotfelter, Vichy, France [11/19/1918]
War: World War, 1914-1918
Branch: Army
Unit: Company A, 344th Machine Gun Battalion, 90th Division, American Expeditionary Forces; Company L, 357th Infantry Regiment
Service Location: Camp Travis, Texas; England; France
Rank: Sergeant
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In 1917, Norvel Preston Clotfelter’s life was upended when he was drafted into the Army. But one thing did not change – he had been keeping a diary since 1912, a habit he would maintain for 37 years, and the 17 months he spent in the Army were no exception. Clotfelter noted his unit’s movements, the weather, commented on the food and briefly described his duties. As he served with the 357th Infantry Regiment, he suffered dysentery, fever, lack of food and clean water and was eventually hospitalized with the Spanish Flu. As he recuperated, rumors of an armistice spread, and on November 11, 1918, he and his fellow patients listened as heavy artillery barrages ceased at exactly 11am.

  Photos
»Photo Album  (7 photos)
 Diaries
»The World War I Journals of Norvel P. Clotfelter [transcription]
 

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  October 26, 2011
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