Ima's diaries are still in progress. Meanwhile, her brother Mike's WW I letters will be part of my new book, THE SMELL OF WAR: THREEE AMERICANS IN THE TRENCHES OF WORLD WAR I, out in December. More news later.
Saturday, July 1, 2017
Saturday, June 10, 2017
On June 9 Mike wrote to Ima that “About two-thirds of those that came over at first will be sent home in the next week. I hope I have made good and won’t be in the bunch. I think I have.” He already knew how to shoot, from a boyhood of hunting with his father and his two brothers. Now he was aiming to hunt a different kind of game. On May 8, 1917, 3,000 men had begun 3 months of intensive training at Camp Funston; on August 15, 1,846 of them had graduated as second lieutenants. One was Lieutenant Mike Hogg. His older brother, Will, once described him as “not particularly studious,” but “fairly aggressive and industrious.”
After a two-week leave in Houston, Mike Hogg moved on to Camp Travis, near San Antonio. There he was soon promoted: He was then Captain Mike Hogg, Company D, lst Battalion, 360th Infantry Regiment, 180th Brigade, 90th Division.
He had four or five lieutenants under his command, and his total company ranged from about 200 to 250.
In the trenches at the Western Front, they would be reduced to 115.
Saturday, June 3, 2017
I sent this letter to the Houston Chronicle on May 29, and it ran in “Letters” on June 2.
Just in case you missed it.
Regarding Allyn West’s “Master plan aims to bring the memorial back to Memorial Park” (Page A3, May 29), it would be well to remember that the site of Camp Logan, the World War I military training camp, along with additional acreage, was bought in 1923 and 1924 by Houston’s Hogg family to preserve as a park. In an arrangement with the city of Houston, and with a donation of $50,000 by Will, Mike, and Ima Hogg, Memorial Park, named to honor the soldiers who fought in World War I, opened as a public park in 1925. At 1,500 acres it is one of the largest urban parks in the nation. As we remember the Great War of a hundred years ago, Houstonians can thank the Hoggs for Memorial Park.
Saturday, May 6, 2017
When the United States entered World War I in April 1917, Ima’s brother Mike was one of the first to enlist. He was not unfamiliar with the military, having worn a uniform and learned to drill as a boy at the Carlisle School in Hillsboro, Texas. In fact, he had rather liked it. In May 1917 he found himself drilling for real at Camp Funston, He wrote the first of many letters to his sister, Ima, in Houston:
Wednesday [May, undated, 1917]
This camp thus far, is the greatest experience I have ever had. We get up at 5:40 every morning and, from that time on till six P.M., we are on the “hop.”. Our equipment is the same as the regular army, and our duties are equally as severe. Everyone is very enthusiastic and, of course, this adds to the interest. We have marching, lectures, music, swimming, and many other things of interest. . . .
Only a few minutes before called out.
With love -
From spring 1917 until winter 1919, from training camp to the Western Front to the postwar Army of Occupation, Mike Hogg wrote letters home.
Saturday, March 11, 2017
More to do on Ima's diaries and her mysteries, but work on my World War I book, The Smell of War: Three Americans in the Trenches of World War I (one of them was Mike Hogg) takes precedence for the nonce. Watch this space for updates. Fall publication.
Saturday, February 11, 2017
Ima and Mike continue their summer travels in Europe 1910.
Off Friday morning [August. 12] 10:08.
Went by trolley then to Milverton
Arrived in Kenilworth 10:40.
Drove a mile and a half to the castle /6 d. These romantic and very beautiful ruins we saw to the best advantage, for after a walk about them, we drove on the way to the station, with the tilting ground, had a fine view of the whole castle, where the lake used to be. Merwyn Tower was the scene of Amy’s life in the castle.
[Amy Robsart, wife of Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, is the heroine of Walter Scott’s novel, Kenilworth, which Ima had just “reviewed” the day before.]
In Warwick, by the way, he & the Earl of Leicester are buried.
[No, Ima, Robert Dudley was the Earl of Leicester. Amy Robsart, his wife, is buried at St. Mary’s Church in Oxford.]
Left Kenilworth 12:25 noon.
After innumerable changes arrived in Ambergate at 4:30 P.M. to find that we should have to go farther in order to coach to Haddon Hall, & Chatsworth. We spent the time there until 6:18 P.M.--walked, drank tea and admired this promising beginning of the Peak--Bought tickets to Rowsley, but decided to get off in Matlock, 6:40 P.M. A mountainous and beautiful place--and a nice hotel--“New Bath”--with a pleasant garden.--So many of the lower classes seem to be traveling hereabouts--just tiny little journeys. There is a grand piano here in Matlock.--I am aching to touch it!
This was Friday, August 12, 1910. Here the diary ends rather abruptly.
The little notebook has more blank pages, but she did not use them.