A look back
Researched by Dr. Bill Stewart
Eighty years ago-in 1918-the Great War (later known as World War I)-the "war to end all wars"-was in its last horrific year. These events suggest some of the War's consequences.
May 1-Private Charner L. Harp, one of Morgan County's finest young men, is now fighting for his country somewhere on a French battlefield. (Private Harp later died in combat.)
May 2-Many Morgan County selectmen (draftees) are currently training for service in France at either Camp Pike or Camp Dodge. About 20 men are called up each week.
May 3-There is currently strong sentiment for coming up with another name for the Bismarck Hotel in Decatur. Since America is at war with Germany there is an understandable anathema toward practically everything Germanic.
May 4-Fred B. Hammond and Sebe A. Moore, both Hartselle young men, will undergo training at the field artillery central officers' military school at Camp Taylor, Ky. Upon successful completion of the program of instruction they will be commissioned as second lieutenants.
May 5-There is still a big backlog of cases on the docket of the Circuit Court of Morgan County. One thing that has caused the congestion of the docket is that court has been continued for some time on account of the entire Morgan County bar having been engaged in aiding the government in selective draft work.
May 6-As many local school children as possible have now been vaccinated for small pox. Biological agents could be used by the enemy to cause massive sickness and death among all American population groups, not merely the fighting forces.
May 7-Two of the songs heard most frequently at the present time on local Victrolas are "Keep the Home Fires Burning" and "When the Boys Come Home." Sheet music sales of these and other patriotic songs also continue to be very high.
May 7-Nearly two dozen young men who worship at Hartselle's First Methodist Church are presently either in military training camps or actually fighting on the battlefields of France, helping to win human liberty for the world.