New Hampshire in WWI: The Hoptoad That Made It To France

I previously wrote about the 14th U.S. Engineers, a railway operating unit that trained at Salem, New Hampshire and served in Europe during World War I.  A number of local soldiers served in that unit including Denny McLaughlin who took a local hop-toad with him on his journey.  I’ll let the newspaper article speak for itself in this case.

From: The Tuscaloosa News (Tuscaloosa, Alabama) 23 April 1919, with the headline: HOME TIES BIND THE HOPTOAD, but Originally from “The Homing Instinct in Animals and Birds: by F.H. Sidney:” Private Denny McLaughlin of Company A., 14th U.S. Engineers, a railway operating unit that trained at Salem, New Hampshire,  captured a hoptoad just before leaving the camp, and placed it in a box. He managed to smuggle it about ship and carried it to France. “The toad is still here,” Denny writes me that “he is obliged to the tie the toad with a long string, for every time the toad gets an opportunity he invariably heads for the seacoast, a hundred miles away. The toad wants to get back home.” Continue reading