November 4, 1918: A Dartmouth Doctor in WWI

November 4, 1918

Rain in the morning clearing by noon.
Pierce Leavitt joins the unit this morning. 

The French liaison officer at Hdqrs. makes it possible for me to go over the German lines in a plane today. This was my first experience in the air. I was warned that it must be done with the utmost secrecy. 

We left the hospital at two in the afternoon and drove to the field on the Nancy road, a short distance from Toul.
I was given a one piece, fur lined suit that was a bit small for me and climbed into the machine.
To my surprise I found myself sitting on a small stool that was not even fastened to the machine. There was plenty of room to move about and there were two machine guns, one on either side that were useless as far as I was concerned. 

We started at 2.45 p.m. The little stool did not move but I clutched the frame work of the plane and held on for dear life. I doubt if I ever let go as my hands and wrists were sore for some days later.
Within a few minutes I was conscious of being very warm from my neck down and during most of the trip I was bathed in perspiration. My face however felt very uncomfortable from the force of the wind and from time to time I was obliged to duck down into the pit as my eyes were so filled with tears that I could not see. 

First we went to Flirey and then over Montsec and from there to St. Mihiel. There were numbers of planes in the air. From St. Mihiel we followed the Meuse to Verdun going higher and higher all the time. We could see a few shells exploding in Verdun. The pilot circled the town three times and then started over the German lines.

We were just north of Fresnes when I was conscious of an explosion just beneath me, the plane dropped some distance, wobbled about, then righted itself and went on. The first thought was that we had been hit but the pilot turned around and smiled and I realized we were out of range of the guns. 

He continued for a minute and then seeing some planes, probably German, in the distance he started back behind our lines. Once losing sight of them he turned back and the next place I recognized was Thiacourt. Soon after passing the town we were again fired upon and planes were seen in the distance.
Once more he turned back and circled about Pont-a-Mousson.
During all this time there was an occasional shell exploding on both sides of the line. 

Frankly I was scared to death and I wished I was back in Toul.
I certainly did not have any use for the fur lined suit.
However the pilot turned about and smiled now and then and that was very reassuring.  

Now we leave Pont-a-Mousson and start for Metz.
We are going at a steadily increasing elevation and things on the earth are not very distinct. We get in sight of the city, having been fired upon four times, and see four planes in the distance. The pilot turns about and we land at 4 p.m.
I was weak in the knees and covered with perspiration.
It was an experience worth while but I swore I would never go in the air again. 

I was back at the hospital at 4.45 and had recovered sufficiently to eat my supper and read a paper before the Medical Society at 8 p.m.

From MS-397, Box 1 Folder 14. To read the diary in its entirety, visit Rauner Special Collections Library and ask to see the Harry Goodall papers (MS-397).

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November 1, 1918: A Dartmouth Doctor in WWI

November 1, 1918

Very pleasant day but heavy fog at night. 

The morning papers say “Turkey Capitulates”.  “Austrian Commander begs Diaz to grant armistice”. “Republic declared in Budapest by National Council”.

The general opinion is that the war is nearly over. Everyone is talking peace and speculating as to when they will get home. It would be difficult for anyone that was not actually present to understand the excitement of the next ten days, that is to the signing of the armistice.
For a week there had been nothing but talk of peace. The men were uneasy, unwilling to work, they spent much time in Toul and in the wine shops. There was a marked increase in the number of intoxicated men.
This feeling must have been general. Col. Tucker had read the order from Hdqrs. on Oct. 28 requesting officers to stop talking about peace and to keep on fighting.
In spite of all this he made the remark at supper that the war would be over in ten days – and it was but that was the general opinion and Tucker deserved no credit as a prophet. He only demonstrated his unfitness to command. 

The morning paper also told us of the heavy fighting on the part of the Americans on the Verdun front, yesterday.
They capture Bois Des Loges for the sixth time, occupied the Belle-Joyense farm and drove the Germans from the village of Brieulles.

There could be no question but what there were very active operations at the front as we could hear the heavy guns all day yesterday and today. 

The reports of peace in the papers, the evident action at the front, the failure of starting the drive on Metz that had been talked abut for some days left the men in a very unsettled state of mind. No one knew what was going to happen and evidently no one cared. Toul once more assumed the activity that was evident just before the St. Mihiel drive. 

Added to this unrest was the renewed discontent among the officers of *51. Rumors today are to the effect that Tucker is to be detached.

My own work with the unit is completed.
The pneumonia epidemic has been stopped. The wards are filled with cases but no new cases are being contracted in the hospital from carelessness.
Building A, the medical building is in perfect shape.
The bed capacity has been reduced from 500 to 400. We have nothing but American Hospital beds. There is plenty of room to work. Every bed is separated from the adjoining bed by sheets.
The wards are absolutely clean. No one could possibly object to occupying one of the beds. 

There was drinking water or every floor, and means of heating water.
There were wash rooms and a special room for smoking on every floor.
Every patient had sputum cups and they were properly cared for.
There were decent toilet facilities. 

Everything was harmonious, thanks to the loyalty of the nurses, the convalescent patients and the appreciation of the patients themselves.
Yet the rest of the hospital was discontented, the officers do not appreciate their rest room, the enlisted men do about as they please. The unit is almost at a breaking point.
Col. Maddux calls me to Hdqrs. again and asks me to straighten things out. I explain the situation and tell him there is nothing more I can do. 

It is only fair to say that the nurses are quite happy.
They have a very nice rest room and enjoy it. After much trouble I have given them new mattresses, sterilized baskets, and ample toilet facilities. In addition to this they have an opportunity to do washing if they choose to do it.

The enlisted men are practically without discipline. There are just enough of the energetic type to keep things going. 

From MS-397, Box 1 Folder 14. To read the diary in its entirety, visit Rauner Special Collections Library and ask to see the Harry Goodall papers (MS-397).

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October 30, 1918: A Dartmouth Doctor in WWI

October 30, 1918

Very pleasant day. A very quiet day with but little work.

Met Carter Harrison, ex-mayor of Chicago this afternoon.
He is here to take charge of the Red Cross in Toul.
Must be a man of 60 years. 

At 4.45 p.m. the Boche came over and dropped two bombs in the outskirt of the town. As yet do not know what they hit. 

Bill Stickney visited me this morning and told me Bob Thonbourg was in command at headquarters. 

Went to Toul with Capt. Whitcomb at 5 p.m. to have supper at the Red Cross mess.
Met James G. Blane, the 3rd. at dinner. He was with the Red Cross. A very arrogant, opinionated man, very free with his criticisms of the President and the Government.

On the way down to dinner the big guns were very active at the front.
It was just midway between daylight and darkness and we could see the smoke of the bursting shells and a little later hear the report.
At 6 p.m. the bombardment shook the building and seemed very near.
One Red Cross man came in late and said the Germans were shelling Nancy. Later we found that this was a false report.
At the time however we felt that things were getting exciting at the front. 

At 8 p.m. we started out to the street and as we reached the sidewalk the sirens began and we heard the German plane just over our heads. The street was filled with people and the French inhabitants made a mad rush for the nearest Abri – paying no attention to anyone in the street.
We were obliged to look sharp, in the darkness to keep from being run over.
The search lights were flashing and the shells of the anti-air guns were exploding over our heads.
It was such a beautiful sight that many gave no thought of the danger and stood watching.
This continued for a half an hour. After this we continued our way to the hospital.
As we walked along we watched the flashes of light, the signals, and the exploding shells in the North.

We were back at the hospital at 9 p.m. and stood watching the North from the Hospital yard for about a half an hour then went to bed. 

We had no knowledge as to what was going on but the rumor was that the Germans were advancing. 

When I went to sleep the firing was still going on.

From MS-397, Box 1 Folder 14. To read the diary in its entirety, visit Rauner Special Collections Library and ask to see the Harry Goodall papers (MS-397).

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October 29, 1918: A Dartmouth Doctor in WWI

October 29, 1918

Nice clear day.
Major Quackenboss, Capt. Gatewood, and myself leave for Verdun at 9 a.m.

We went out on the Void road turning to the right just beyond Pagny. Went through Toussey, Euville, Commercy, Leronville, Sampigny, St. Mihiel, Rouirois, Lacroix, Troyon, Genicourt, and Haudainville.

It was at Leronville that the signs of devastation began.
St. Mihiel was badly damaged but the people were moving back and a few of the shops were opened.
From here on many of the small towns on either side of the road were completely destroyed.
From St. Mihiel we drove along the Meuse and the canal.
The canal was out of commission and there were numbers of canal boats that had been destroyed. 

Troop were moving in both directions. German planes frequently came over our heads, antiaircraft guns were firing on either side of the road. 

We reached Verdun about noon and remained about an hour.
A few German shells exploded outside the town while we were there but none hit the town. Boche planes went over us but did nothing. 

A part of the 26th. division were in town. I tried to find Ed. Logan but was told that he had left in the morning. He had been relived from duty. They had given him a dinner the night before. It was evident that there was some trouble and that the men I talked with were very much distressed.
On the way back we turned off the road at Lacroix going through Lamorville, Lavigneville, Savonniers, Woinville to Montsec.

At Savonniers there was a large German ammunition dump and just beyond some extensive German dugouts. 

At Montsec they had collected a large pile of German explosives. 

From here we went to Schiespray, Bernecourt and then home arriving at 5 p.m.

After supper Rodhyheaver sang to the officers. 

From MS-397, Box 1 Folder 14. To read the diary in its entirety, visit Rauner Special Collections Library and ask to see the Harry Goodall papers (MS-397).

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October 22, 1918: A Dartmouth Doctor in WWI

October 22, 1918

Clear and very much warmer.
Went to town this noon and as I came to the square I was surprised at see everyone at attention.
Looking at the machine in the center of things I recognized Marchal [sic.] Foch. I quickly came to attention but was seized with stage fright for the fear that I would not do the proper thing.
After he finished speaking the car drove rapidly away.
He had a strong face, kindly, intelligent and it is evident that the French soldier loves him. 

The Second American Army has its headquarters in Toul now.
The expectation is that there will be an advance on Metz.
Patients are being evacuated from the hospitals and we are told to be prepared for another drive.

Col. Maddux visited my wards today bringing with him an inspector, a regular army man.
They were both very complimentary.
Major Barkley visited me and said a miracle had been performed. 

Another Boche plane comes over at 5 a.m. and woke us all up.
Two of our planes were after it but were too late, as usual.
The anti-aircraft fire was tremendous. 

From MS-397, Box 1 Folder 14. To read the diary in its entirety, visit Rauner Special Collections Library and ask to see the Harry Goodall papers (MS-397).

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October 21, 1918: A Dartmouth Doctor in WWI

October 21, 1918

A clear pleasant day and a beautiful moonlight night.

Finished cleaning up the medical building today. All the beds are separated with sheets. The old plumbing is closed. The large iron cans are used for taking care of waste and rubbish and the entire building is as clean as any hospital at home. It is a matter of great satisfaction and everyone but Tucker expressed satisfaction at what had been done.
I asked Maddux to come over and see it and he was very much pleased. 

Just before lunch Tucker sent for me. Major Smith was in the office at the time and Tucker made one of his flattering speeches and said that it was his pleasure to hand me my promotion to a Lt. Colonel.
The promotion was dated Aug. 10th. It had been sent to Camp Upton and forwarded. This was the day after we had sailed and had it been received before I had sailed things would have been much easier for me. More than this my increased pay did not begin until I had accepted the commission. 

It was a great pleasure to get it but in a way a disappointment as Maddux had told me a few days before that he was going to recommend my promotion in a few days. Said he had reasons to believe that I had been promoted and would wait a week or so before he did anything. 

During the afternoon Quack. and I went over to *55. Both Balch and Torbert were away. 

We came back to *51 and I went over to the bath house for a shower. As I came out of the bath and was walking back to quarters and this was about 4 p.m. I saw a French plane flying just over the roofs of the buildings – going so close that it seemed as if it would hit them. Back and forth he went three or four times then came straight towards me, flying so close to the ground that I feared something would happen so I stepped in one of the doorways. As I did so he passed me, turned his head and laughed and then turned the plane upwards and went over the roof of the bath house in the direction of Dongermain.
At the time I thought nothing about it as so many American aviators were in the habit of flying close to our buildings in order to perform for the benefit of the particular nurse he was interested in and I supposed this was an American in a French machine. However this fellow dropped a bomb on the ammunition dump at Dongermain and there was a constant explosion of small munitions until about 9 p.m. From where we were it sounded like the explosion of bunches of large fire crackers. It seemed that none of the large shells exploded.
There was no immediate attempt to get him and he sailed away in safety. Some few minutes later an American plane came over but it was too late. 

The First meeting of the Justice Hospital Medical Society was held tonight.

Clear, warm, rain in the evening.
Rodhyheaver visits the hospital today.
Work progresses rapidly in the wards.
Went to Toul tonight and celebrated my promotion with Homer and Lyman.

From MS-397, Box 1 Folder 13. To read the diary in its entirety, visit Rauner Special Collections Library and ask to see the Harry Goodall papers (MS-397).

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Haitian Graffiti artist in Baker Main Hall January 12

Haitian Graffiti Artist Jerry Rosembert Moïse will give a live demonstration of his work Friday January 12 from 10 am to 3pm in the Main Hall of the Baker Library  (Refreshments will be served from 1-3pm)

Jerry Rosembert Moïse is Haiti’s most prominent graffiti artist. His murals color Haiti’s urban landscape with images of everyday people grappling with the harsh realities of life in the impoverished country. But if his subject matter is misery, his subjects are not miserable. He showcases urban Haitians combating and cunningly navigating the most difficult challenges—disaster, insecurity, illiteracy, aid dependency, corruption, poverty—with courage, poise, and humor. At the same time his murals critique Haitian society, they also valorize the Haitian spirit, featuring strong, smart, and witty characters that invoke viewers’ sympathies and respect simultaneously. Situated at the intersection of Haitian traditions of popular art, Caribbean models of humor and caricature, and graffiti practices common in the urban African diaspora, Jerry’s murals present a new movement of public art as a form of social critique in Haiti.

Jerry Rosembert Moïse’s visit and painting demonstration are sponsored by Dartmouth’s Department of Anthropology.

Student Publishing Fair on Thursday January 18th at Noon

Stop by the Student Publishing Fair on Thursday January 18th, noon-2:30, Berry Library Main Street!

  • Learn about student-led publishing at Dartmouth past and present
  • Find out how you can get involved
  • Get expert help with digital publishing tools like InDesign and the Dartmouth Digital Commons publishing system
  • Enjoy refreshments over conversations about student publishing

October 13, 1918: A Dartmouth Doctor in WWI

October 13, 1918

Another pleasant day.
At officers meeting Major Smith and I requested that we be permitted to consult together as to the distribution of the officers from a medical and surgical standpoint to get the best possible out of the men. Tucker agreed.

After the meeting I told Tucker that things in the hospital were very bad from a sanitary point of view and that if the thing was to be cleared up it would be necessary to do a lot of work and that the first thing to be done was to reduce the bed capacity so that the nurses could get between the beds and so that sheets could be hung between the beds in order to get isolation.

I never saw Tucker so mad before – his face turned ashen and he said “Not a single bed is to be removed from this hospital.” I tried to keep calm and told him again that the epidemic could not be stopped unless there could be isolation and that was possible only when the space between the beds was enough to permit the nurses to care for the patients.
He said “If you remove a single bed I will court marshal you.”
By this time I had lost my temper and I replied “Col. Tucker I have come back to stop this epidemic and I am going to do it. I cannot do it without bothering you evidently but I am going to do it and you will not interfere because when you step in and bother me I shall send a copy of this report to the Chief Surgeon and to Gen. Thayer. You can read it over and I will come in and see you again whenever you wish. He hesitated a moment, took the report and said come in at 11.30.

When I returned he was quite meek and said “You would not send that report in would you?” I replied – I will send it through you right now if you wish. If you do not care to have me do that you know perfectly well that I can send it directly anytime I wish and I assure you I will do it. 

From that time on I never had any trouble with Tucker except that he did everything possible to hinder my work.
After this conversation he said he would cooperate with me in every way possible. I asked him for a carpenter and he gladly granted the request. The carpenter came and worked from 1.30 until 2.30 and then he disappeared.
I went to Tucker and he said “For Christ’s sake do you think you are the only man here that wants a carpenter?”
Still keeping cool I asked him for a hammer and saw and he said that the tools were all in the hands of the carpenter and he was not permitted to give them to anyone else.
I thanked him and told him I thought I knew exactly where I stood and said that I had been in France long enough to do things in spite of the fellow that tried to block everything.
He said “What do you mean?” and I replied that from now on you and I have nothing in common – you have nothing on me and I have a lot on you. I am in the hands of friends here in France and you are quite by yourself. So long as you leave me alone I will leave you alone – when you interfere with me there will be only trouble for you. He was purple with rage and as I left the office I turned and said I am going now to Maddux and tell him [sic.] just kind of a man you are and am going to tell him just what I am going to do. Furthermore if I am opposed my Maddux I am going to see Gen. Thayer tomorrow and insist that he come up and inspect your rotten place. 

The filthy condition of this building was but one of the problems at the unit. 

The discontent among the officers was very marked. Tucker had his friends and those he disliked and the distinction was very apparent. He spited himself in particular against what he termed as the “Boston crowd”.
Men were doing surgery that had no surgical training while good surgeons were doing medical work, or administrative work.

The nurses were unhappy. There were about 100 in all and they had but one toilet. Their beds were infested with lice and no effort was made to correct this. Many of them had been bitten so that they had numerous small abscesses on their extremities. The conditions under which they were working in the wards was impossible – they could not get between the beds, they had to run down to the ground to get drinking water for the men, bath water was practically impossible to get, there was no hot water and no means for heating water.

The enlisted men were discontented and they lacked discipline.
The enlisted men assigned to duty in Building A were incompetent and could not be depended upon. They very worst men in the unit had been assigned to duty here.

In order to clean up the epidemic it was necessary to reduce the bed capacity and to hang sheets between the beds in order to isolate. More than this it meant instructing the enlisted men in ordinary cleanliness, care of sputum etc.

It was all such a mess that one hardly knew where to begin.
The first step however was the cubicles. The bed capacity could not be reduced immediately as there was no place to put the men. However the death rate was so great as this time that by the time we were ready to cubicle we were reduced to the proper number of beds. That is as soon as a man died his bed was removed.
I had expected trouble from Tucker as a result of this but he never said anything about it. 

The walls of the wards were of concrete and it was impossible to drive nails or fasten hoots but fortunately there was a very strong shelf running along the walls, intended for the belongings of the soldiers and there was a space of about three inches between the wall and the shelf. If we could get boards they would go in back of the shelf and would be stable enough for us to string wires across the room.
But there were no boards to be had. However there was a small mill not far from Toul and I had decided that I would go there and get the lumber just as soon as I was sure of sheets and wire. 

In the morning I had requisitioned 500 sheets. Tucker had laughed and said that he could not get enough sheets to put on his beds to say nothing of hanging them between beds. He refused to sign the requisition. 

 During the morning, and after the sheets had been refused I went down to the Red Cross warehouse at Toul and had found cases of sheets.
With this information I went back to 51 and saw the Red Cross representative at this hospital, Mr. Ernest Whitcomb of Amherst Mass, one of the best men I have ever had the privilege of knowing. Through all this trying time Mr. Whitcomb was a friend to be depended upon.
Mr. Whitcomb said he would be very glad to give me the sheets. Later however he came to me and said that he had made out the requisition to Maddux and had gone to Maddux for his signature and that Maddux had refused to sign it. The only reason I could find for his refusal was that it would be an admission that the Red Cross had the sheets and that the Army did not have them.
We were both disgusted with the outcome and I then asked Mr. Whitcomb if he would go to Toul and buy cloth for the purpose and he readily consented.
Later he came back to me with a smile on his face and said that after I had left he had thought things over and decided that it would be best for him to tell Maddux what he was going to do for me and that Maddux had said “Hell is Goodall going to do that? Give me the requisition and I will sign it.”
Whitcomb said I should have the sheets tomorrow. 

During this time Major Barclay came over and asked me how things were going on and I told him frankly that everything was just about as bad as it could be, that the wards were not fit for anyone to work in and that I would not ask anyone to work in a place where I would not work. Said that I would clean it up as fast as I could but until it was clean I would assume no responsibility for the patients.
Barclay then said that he had just left Maddux and that it was his intention to make me the Commanding Officer of the unit. I requested him to tell Maddux that any such step would be a mistake as Tucker’s friends in the unit would do everything possible to make things uncomfortable for me. 

Later in the afternoon Homer Smith and I went over the list of officers assigning them to their various duties according to their qualifications and then went to the office and presented the plan to Tucker. Once more Tucker went up in the air as his favorites were not given important jobs and he rejected the entire plan. When we left Homer went to Toul – to forget and I went back to the Medical building and called Pettingill into my office. I told Pettingill that the situation was a hopeless one unless we could get enough convalescent patients that were willing to work to put things over. Pettingill was familiar with the men and I was not. He said it can be done and I put him to work organizing the men. Fortunately for me he knew what he was saying and he got the men.
I thought I had seen hard days at the gas Hospital but this was the first time that I had met with opposition from every point. My mad was up and I was calm compared with Pettingill.  

From MS-397, Box 1 Folder 13. To read the diary in its entirety, visit Rauner Special Collections Library and ask to see the Harry Goodall papers (MS-397).

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October 11, 1918: A Dartmouth Doctor in WWI

October 11, 1918

After officers meeting at noon Maddux requested me to remain and told me that he might have to send me back to *51 to straighten things out. He said that the pneumonia situation was getting away from them and that something would have to be done or else he would have to break up the unit.
He said that Tucker was not equal to the job, that the officers were disconcerted, that the nurses were all upset and that the unit was practically disorganized.
I had known much of the discontent but did not suppose that it was as serious as Maddux was making it out.
I told him that I hoped he could find service for me elsewhere, that Tucker and I were not congenial and that my returning to the unit would probably cause friction.
The matter was left unsettled. 

At 2 p.m. I took the Dodge, having invited Quackenboss, and started for Chaligny, where the convalescent camp was to be located. We drove about 10 miles through the Moselle valley, along the south bank of the river through beautiful and peaceful country. We went through Chaudeney and Bois-l’eveque.
The fields on either side of the river were beautiful green while the high hills on either side were brown with the turning foliage. Everything was peaceful except in the roads we now and then passed French troop marching forward, or a train of Trucks.
Here and there was a concealed observation balloon.
We finally came to Pont-St. Vincent and here we crossed the river and turned back, and after about two miles we came to the camp. It was a most discouraging place – much like Rimacourt with all the mud and lack of facilities that that town had.
We returned on the north bank of the river going through Maron and Villey-le-Sec. Here we turned away from the river and came out into the Nancy road.
The ride back was even more pleasant. The hillsides were covered with vineyards and the fields were being worked by aged men, women and children.
The country was as beautiful as anything could be but every town we passed through, which seems to be typical of France was as dirty and filthy as it could be.
How can a people keep their land looking so clean and keep their houses and persons so dirty?

At 5 p.m. Maddux called me to Hdqrs. and said that I must go to 51 the first thing in the morning and clean up the pneumonia epidemic. It was discouraging but there was nothing to do but to obey. 

At 7 p.m. while I was packing up my things Maddux’s car called for me and the driver said the Col. wanted me at B.H. *51 at once. I arrived promptly to find all the officers assembled in the dining room.
Maddux, the medical and surgical consultants, and Capt Gatewood were at the head table. As I came in Maddux pointed to a chair near him, and the meeting began.
The substance of all the remarks was that the unit was not doing satisfactory work, that the epidemic was getting ahead of them, that they either must brace up or be broken up.
It was a disagreeable experience and it hurt to think that things had reached this crisis. 

From MS-397, Box 1 Folder 13. To read the diary in its entirety, visit Rauner Special Collections Library and ask to see the Harry Goodall papers (MS-397).

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