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Massachusetts 'Dough-boys'

WW I-KershawThe term ‘dough-boy’ goes back to the Mexican-American War of the 1840s and referred to young men who left their schooling to join the Army and later had dust (like flour dough) all over them from marching in the dry lands of Texas into Mexico. It became very popular term to refer to any soldier in the Army or in the Marines during World War I. By World War Two the term for soldiers had changed to ‘G.I.’ – government issued.

During World War I, the United States sent American soldiers to Europe between early 1917 to the early months of 1919. You could have had an ancestor who served in the United States military during the ‘Great War’, what was later termed WW One.

If that relative served from Massachusetts, there may well be a photo image of that ancestor with the State Library of Massachusetts which is now online. There is approximately 8,440 images to view.  WW I-Briggs

Using the search box, you can place a surname, but do try variations in the spelling. There will be a thumbnail image after you click on a name. The full known name, military rank and regiment the person served with will be written. If there was information on the back of the photo, that is shown also. Click on each to make larger and right-click to save to your computer.

Some surname only have initials and not full given names. Most are very large and clear portraits of each soldier in their uniform.  WW I-Sawyer

This would be quite a treasure if you located a relative from this collection.

Photos: Sgt. J. Donald Kershaw who served in the 104th Inf. Headquarters Co., Lt. Col. Lloyd Vernon Briggs, Medical Corps, U.S. Reserves; and Chapman F. Sawyer, Battery C., 9th Train Battalion F. A. R. D.

Related genealogical blogs:

Ancestors of World War One

New Sources for WW One Photos

Old Boston


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