New Hampshire WWI Military: Heroes of Hopkinton and Contoocook

South view of Contoocook Covered Bridge
spanning the Contoocook River, Hopkinton,
NH; Library of Congress Prints and
Photographs Division, Washington DC

In 2017 the Town of Hopkinton, New Hampshire’s Historical Society presented an amazing series of seminars and educational programs on the town’s involvement in World War I and how it affected everyone. The Hopkinton Library offered a list of recommended books relating to WWI experiences and how it changed people’s lives. Everyone involved there is to be highly commended for their focus on this forgotten war, and the people who lived and died during this time.

In this article I focus primarily on those who served in the military, and especially those who died in wartime. When the World War ended, towns throughout New Hampshire created monuments, memorials and plaques. They held dinners and parades to welcome “the boys” home. Nurses, telephone girls and Red Cross workers also were celebrated to a lesser degree. Some did not make it home at all.

Hopkinton’s WWI monument is located on the town green at the intersection of Hopkinton Road and Main Street in Hopkinton. The engraving reads as follows:

Photograph of Hopkinton NH WWI memorial.
Photo courtesy of Nadine Ferrero.

ERECTED IN HONOR OF THOSE WHO SERVED IN THE
1917 WORLD WAR 1919
EVANS GEORGE E. — MONTGOMERY E. ROGER
KILLED IN SERVICE
BURRAGE GUY H. REAR ADMIRAL U.S. NAVY
/left-first column/
ABBOTT WALTER G.
BAKER ALBERT S.
BARTON CLAYTON E.
BOUTWELL HARLEY
BOUTWELL LEROY A.
CARR JOHN F.
CARNES HERBERT C.
CLOUGH WENDALL A.
CLOUGH RICHARD R.
CLAUSEN ALBERT V.
CORLISS ALMON W
CONANT DWIGHT L.
CHASE FRED N
/2nd column/
DAVIS AMOS H.
DOW ROBERT B.
DUSTON ARTHUR S.
DODGE CHARLES F.
DODGE JAMES W.
DIMAN HENRY S.
DENSMORE HARLAN W.
DERRY ANGUS P.
DROWN LESLIE W.
DERBY WALTER T.
EMERSON FRANK D.
EMERSON LLOYD S.
GLANVILLE MANLEY A.

Closeup of Hopkinton NH WWI monument.
Courtesy of Nadine Ferrero.

/3rd column/
GRIFFIN HAROLD R.
GRANT WILLIAM C.
HUNTOON ORA M.
HEATH CARL
HOWE GEORGE M.
KIMBALL HAROLD C.
KIMBALL LEROY P.
KIMBALL EDWIN N.
KIMBALL DONALD
LORD EUGENE H.
MOGLE THOMAS H.
MORGAN ALBERT E.
NELSON JOHN
/4th right column/
PERRY CHARLES H.
PUTNEY JOHN S. JR.
PURRINGTON JAMES A.
ROBERTS FRED P.
RUSS CLARENCE K.
SANBORN DONALD E.
STANFORD CHARLES C.
SLEEPER RICHARD B.
SYMONDS BENJAMIN P.
SMITH ROBERT M.
TONKIN ALBERT
TONKIN FRANK
WHITE CHAUNCEY W.
-ARMY NURSE-
SANBORN LAURA
-STUDENT TRAINING CORPS-
BOUTWELL LLEWELLYN — LADD FRANK W. — LIBBEY KENNETH P — CONANT GEORGE E.

✫★✫★✫★✫★✪🌟✪✫★✫★✫★✫★
Heroes of HOPKINTON NH
Died In Service During WWI

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George E. Evans military papers from
Canadian Army records.

George E. Evans |Private |27 Sept 1918 France |1st Depot Bn 2nd C.O.R. [Depot Battalion, Central Ontario Regiment] | Bourlon Cemetery, France. Plot 1, Row C, Grave 8 |

George Ernest Evans’ story is an unusual one, first because he seems to have joined the Canadian Army while providing a false birth place, and second because his name is engraved on the Roll of Honor in Doric Hall of the New Hampshire State House (this honor in other cases seems to be reserved for those who served in the U.S. military).  He was born 17 Feb 1894 in Cambridge MA, son of Joseph Evans & Mary Jane Coiley.  In 1900 the U.S. Census shows him living in Cambridge MA with his father and siblings Joseph H., and Albert D.

George E. Evans married in Lynn MA on 30 June 1916 to Antoinette Marie Bergstrom, daughter of Gustave & Anna (Anderson) Bergstrom. She was b. 31 March 1895 at Maynard MA.   On 5 June 1917 George E. Evans completed his WWI Registration form while living in Webster, New Hampshire.  He detailed that he was a carpenter for the James Fox Factory of Contoocook, and that his wife was sick.  His personal description was that he was tall, slim with blue eyes and light hair.  I could find no evidence that he enlisted or served in the U.S. military.

What I found next was unusual. Canadian Attestation (Enlistment) papers for George Ernest Evans.  Address: Portland Hotel, Kansas City MO. Born: Toronto, Canada. NOK: Nettie Evans, wife. Her address: Contoocook PO New Hampshire. Date of Birth: 17 February 1894. Machinist. married. 5 ft 6 inches tall. medium complexion with blue eyes and brown hair. scar on right hip. age 23y 7 months. Methodist. fit for service. No. 3105689. [SEE Digitized Service File]. During WWI he served as a Private in 1st Depot Bn 2nd C.O.R. [First Depot Battalion, 2nd Canadian Ontario Regiment].   He enlisted 20 November 17 in Toronto, Canada, embarked Canada at Halifax on 3 Feb 1918 for England. Disembarked England at Liverpool 16 Feb 1918.  Seven months later he would be dead.

The Circumstances of Death Register Show:  27 – 9 – 18 [27 September 1918] 102nd Battalion, George Ernest Evans, Killed in Action. During an attack on Bourlon Wood he was hit by fragments from an enemy shell and instantly killed.  He is buried in Bourlon Cemetery, Plot 1, Row C, Grave 8.  [see 2nd listing for Bourlon]. His widow received a pension.

✫★✫★✫★✫★✪🌟✪✫★✫★✫★✫★

Earl Roger Montgomery, likeness from the Boston Sunday Globe, 1918.

 

Earl R. Montgomery | Corp.  |Killed in Accident, 18 June 1918 North Charleston NC |U.S. Army |[Read full article about him here] | American Legion Post in Contoocook named in his honor.

 

✫★✫★✫★✫★✪🌟✪✫★✫★✫★✫★

-STUDENT TRAINING CORPS-

George Elmer Conant


George Elmer Conant
was born 19 December 1900 in Hopkinton New Hampshire, son of of Dwight E. & Blanche L. (Kemp) Conant. In the 1910 census he was living in Hopkinton NH with his parents and siblings: Hiram E., Lucius D., and Lena M.  According to the “War Record of Dartmouth College,” George E. Conant, Class of 1922 “prepared at Hopkinton High School, Contoocook, N.H.  He was accepted for the Dartmouth S.A.T.C., but before induction contracted influenza and died at Hanover, Sept. 21, 1918.”  He is buried in Contoocook Village Cemetery, Contoocook NH.

 

✫★✫★✫★✫★✪🌟✪✫★✫★✫★✫★
NOTABLE SERVICE DURING WWI
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Admiral Guy H. Burrage, 1904,
Library of Congress.

A name listed is prominently at the top of the WWI monument: BURRAGE GUY H. REAR ADMIRAL U.S. NAVY.

Guy Hamilton Burrage was born 14 June 1867 in Lowell MA, son of Hamilton & Mary (Howe) Burrage.  He graduated from the Naval Academy at Annapolis MD with the Class of 1887, and rose in the ranks to Vice-Admiral in the U.S. Navy.  He was in command of the U. S. S. Nebraska during World War I, and in 1919 he was also the Commandant of the Norfolk Navy Yard. He was also in command of U. S. S. Memphis which returned Charles A. Lindbergh from Paris after his historic flight, and was involved in an attempt to resolve the Lindbergh kidnapping case in 1932.  Adm. Burrage built a summer home in Contoocook, New Hampshire.  Here he also built a small “summer house” out of the crate in which Col. Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis was brought back across the Atlantic. [Editor’s note: this small crate house was later sold by a descendant of Adm. Burrage].   Adm. Guy H. Burrage died 16 June 1954 in Hopkinton, Merrimack Co. NH. A funeral was held in this town and he was buried in Congressional Cemetery, Washington DC on 18 June 1954.

✫★✫★✫★✫★✪🌟✪✫★✫★✫★✫★

Wendell Alfred Clough was born on  19 May 1894 Hopkinton NH, son of Charles E. & Gertrude E. (Hastings) Clough.  He registered on 5 June 1917 for the WWI Draft and it did not take long for him to be sent to Europe.  The U.S. Army Transport Passenger list shows a “W.A. Clough” departing New York City on 27 September 1917 aboard the ship Celtic. At that time he was a Private in Company C., of the 103rd Infantry.  Newspaper reports tell his story as follows:

Boston Globe of 8 September 1918

September 8, 1918, BOSTON GLOBE, p. 11. “The second contingent of invalided American soldiers to reach Boston was landed yesterday at the Navy Yard from an American transport, formerly a Hamburg-American Liner. Shortly afterward the patients ere comfortably placed in the hospitals here and on the islands in the harbor. The total of sick   and wounded who arrived from overseas was 195. Of that number 52 were stretcher cases, men so seriously wounded or sick that they must be kept in bed. All these cases were taken to the Boston City Hospital for the present, and later will be distributed among the various Army hospitals which make a specialty of their particular wounds or sickness. Among these arrivals were 13 men suffering from mental disorders caused by shell shock. These were sent to the Boston Psychopathic Hospital whence after a period of rest, they will be removed to Buffalo. One man had tuberculosis in an advanced stage and he was sent to a local State hospital. The remainder, 127 in number, were sent to the hospitals of the Boston coast defense system.Fifty were sent over the road in Red Cross ambulances to Fort Banks. To the hospital at Fort Warren were sent 25 men and to the hospital at Fort Andrews, Peddocks Island, 25 more. These were taken by Army boats. Fifteen sick Marines were sent to the Naval Hospital in Chelsea. The wounded and sick soldiers and Marines were cared for on the way over by two Army nurses and 18 Sisters of the Holy Ghost. The ship was held at Quarantine until yesterday morning and prior to starting for her berth, every man on the ship had been examined by Maj. Austin, assistant medical officer of the Northeastern Department. Surgeon Breck came over from Hoboken and directed the plans for handling the men.The transport also brought 200 officers, sent as instructors to the various camps throughout the county. There were also some returning soldiers on furlough or assigned to various duties at home.The famous musical director, Walter Damrosch, returned on the transport after nine weeks in Paris. He declared he never saw anything so wonderful as the change from darkness to light in Paris following the magnificent work of the Americans at Chateau Thierry. In Paris Mr. Damrosch said nothing is too good for the Americans. Congressman Peter F. Tague has telegraphed to Sec Baker requesting that an information bureau be established by the Department of the Northeast in this city, so that relatives may learn at the earliest possible moment of the arrival of invalided soldiers and the hospital to which they have been sent.List of wounded included “Clough Wedall [sic] pvt. Co . C. 103d Inf.”

Boston Sunday Globe, 9-15-1918. “The next man I talked with was Private Wendell A. Clough, who had enlisted in Concord, N.H., a military man who, afterwards, with the rest of his outfit, and many companies from Maine, made up the 102d Regiment. This regiment was brigaded with the 101st and they gained fame at Chateau Thierry, where many of the outfit were killed and wounded. Clough lost a leg, as he tersely puts it. “I had the satisfaction of knowing that two Germans got theirs before I went out on a stretcher. We dug the Germans from their holes and started them along towards the Rhine. I guess they are still on their way. They were going fast when they started. We did not find time to take any prisoners. I could run some, but believe me, I couldn’t catch up to the German rear guard at Chateau Thierry.”

Fitchburg Daily Sentinel Sept 13, 1918.  Wendell N. Clough of C Co. 103d regiment was nominated as candidate for representative to the New Hampshire legislature by the Democrats. Private Clough is the first soldier from this state thus honored in his town… He was severely wounded in the recent battle of the Marne on July 20 and is now recovering from the loss of one leg just below the knee in a hospital in France. He is expected home soon. — Springfield Republican.

Wendall Alfred Clough Sr. returned home to Hopkinton, and was well enough to marry on 9 April 1919 in Tilton NH to Catharine M. Gile, daughter of Asa E. & Etta J. (Woodward) Gile. She was born abt 1891 Belmont NH. They had a son Wendall Alfred Clough Jr. b 3 Feb 1920 Somerville MA, d. 10 Sep 1988 who served in WW2.    Wendall Alfred Clough Sr. died 25 Dec 1951 and is buried in Contoocook Cemetery.


[Editor’s Note: this story is part of an on-going series about heroic New Hampshire men and women of World War I.  Look here for the entire listing].

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