The Hippo


Apr 23, 2019








NH and the Great War lecture series. Courtesy photo.

New Hampshire Historical Society’s Spring Lecture Series: “New Hampshire and the Great War”

When: Thursdays, 6 p.m., from April 13 through May 11
Where: New Hampshire Historical 
Society, 30 Park St., Concord
Cost: $50 for the whole series; includes a one-year membership to the Society. The series is free for members.
Visit: or call 856-0621 to register

Making history
Lectures examine NH’s role in the Great War

By Matt Ingersoll

 World War I began in 1914, but it would be three more years before the United States entered — with New Hampshire making several contributions you probably didn’t learn about in history class.

As a way to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the nation’s involvement in the war, the New Hampshire Historical Society is shaping its annual spring lecture series around the topic, specifically examining the Granite State’s involvement. Events for the “New Hampshire and the Great War” series will be held every Thursday at 6 p.m., from April 13 through May 11, and are open to the public.
Registrations are available collectively for the full series, but Elizabeth Dubrulle, director of education and public programs at the Society, said signups will continue to be available through the day of the last lecture if you can’t make all of them.
“[The lectures] are for general audiences, so there is no prerequisite or assigned reading or anything like that,” she said. “Each one can also kind of be its own event too, so you can easily jump into one lecture and miss another and not lose the thread at all.”
Dubrulle added that the series also kicks off the beginning of several other events and commemorations that will be promoted throughout each lecture, including a special issue of the Society’s publication Historical New Hampshire in the fall, and a World War I exhibit opening at the museum in November, among other public tours and lectures.
Local historian and former journalist Byron Champlin will present at the first lecture. He will tell the story of how several men from Concord played a major role in the United States’ expansion in air service during the war. Champlin appeared at a similar program in December at the Aviation Museum of New Hampshire and is working on a book about the subject.
The series continues on April 20 with an appearance by Saint Anselm College history professor Hugh Dubrulle, who will talk about New Hampshire residents who were members of the 26th Infantry “Yankee” Division.
Society library director Sarah Galligan will appear at the lecture on April 27. Dubrulle said Galligan will tell the story of singer Carolyn Gardner Bartlett of Warner, who became one of the first American women in Europe during the war.
“[Bartlett] was actually a singer in England when the war broke out,” Dubrulle said, “and she reinvented herself as a nun named Sister Beatrice. … She started setting up field hospitals and became a kind of humanitarian [during the war]. … She was even once accused of being a spy.”
Champlin will return for the lecture on May 4 and will examine the life of John G. Winant and his role in the war prior to becoming the state’s 60th governor.
The final lecture, on May 11, features MIT history professor Christopher Capozzola and will cover the role of Uncle Sam during the time of the war, how he was perceived by the public and how they responded.
“There are all these kinds of funky connections [the war] had to New Hampshire that maybe you didn’t have time to learn in school but are fun to learn now,” Dubrulle said. “Each one is also going to have a question-and-answer session afterward.” 

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