The WWI soldiers in these biographies were credited to a town in Sullivan County, New Hampshire. WWI deaths were attributed to a specific town based on a variety of criteria that was not always consistent from town to town. Their attributed location could have been their birth place, or where they married, or where they registered for the World War I Draft. Other reasons were they indicated the town as their last known address, or noted some next of kin or friend living there during wartime.
I’ve made every attempt to identify these heroes of World War I, and have placed some of them in this County Heroes list in order to recognize them. If you find them here, then their name appears on the New Hampshire WWI Honor Roll, in Doric Hall, State House, Concord NH (unless otherwise noted). Let us not forget!
Heroes of SULLIVAN COUNTY
(Died in Service)
Private Perley V. Smith
Credited to Gorham, NH
Perley Vernon Smith was born 5 Feb 1896 in Grantham, Sullivan Co. NH, son of Elbridge M. & Mary V. (Currier) Smith. He completed his WWI Registration form in Grantham NH where he was working as a laborer on his father’s farm. He was single of medium height and slender build with blue eyes and light brown hair. U.S. Military Transport Passenger Lists show that he was a Private in Co. A, 303rd Infantry Regiment, 76th Division when he sailed for Europe aboard the ship Burma from Montreal Canada on 6 July 1918. His father of North Groton NH was his next of kin, and his service number was 2722987. There was some confusion in regard to Perley V. Smith’s disposition. He was, at first, reported in newspapers of December 1918 to be “Missing in Action.” Then on June 6, 1919 the Fitchburg Daily Sentinel newspaper reported “Perley V. Smith, Grafton N.H. Died of Disease” His declared date of death is 9 May 1919. His remains were returned to the United States aboard the ship Matoika (from Brest, France to Hoboken, NJ), arriving on 21 July 1920. He must have been transferred, because now hie is listed as a private in Co. I, 18th Infantry (his service number remains the same. Perley Vernon Smith was laid to rest in Hill Dale Cemetery, East Grantham NH. Perley V. Smith’s name is engraved on the NH WWI Honor Roll, in Doric Hall of the NH State House, Concord.
[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].