The Cutler Family History Project

The Cutler Family History Project

Friday, September 23, 2011

Making progress on the Western Front -- Eugene Marlborough Cutler in World War I

That title was my lame excuse for a pun, because at the moment, I'm focused on gathering information on Eugene Marlborough Cutler's service in World War I.

After digitizing many of the files and pictures I have, I started to transcribe letters and difficult-to-read documents. One such record is an original copy of Eugene's Honorable Discharge from the United States Army.
Because of a 1973 fire at the National Personnel Records Center, it's possible this may be some of the only original documentation of Eugene's service. I'm hoping to fill out a form to obtain any additional information the NPRC may have.

According to the research I've done, and based on Eugene's obituary, he "entered the army for service in Europe with the First Infantry Division during WWI." There is, however, a slight discrepancy in dates, as Eugene enlisted on Jan. 5, 1918, and the First Infantry Division, which was made up of experienced soldiers, sent the last of its troops in December of 1917. He also returned in April 1919, and the First didn't return home until August/September of 1919. It's possible he was a volunteer put into the division after arriving on the front.

On the back of the form, under "Battles, engagements, skirmishes, expeditions," it reads "A.E.F." This stands for American Expeditionary Forces, which were the troops sent to Europe by the United States in World War I.

He is noted to have been a Private First Class, and appears to have been a member of the H.A.C, or Honourable Artillery Company. This was a British army division, but many American soldiers were placed in British and French units to augment the work being done. This is noted on the second line of his discharge document. If that is the case, there is a possibility he took part in the Battle of Vittorio Veneto, which was instrumental in ending the war.

Just prior to the H.AC. notation on the second line is a word I am unable to make out. It seems to read "Neadjce/Needjre/etc." but a fold line has made it difficult to read, and this is obviously not a word. I'm continuing to research what this means, as it seems to make reference to his company, regiment, arm, corp, or department, as noted by the footnotes at the bottom of the document.

Eugene enlisted at Fort Douglas, Utah. During WWI, this base was used as an internment camp for Germans living stateside, as well as a POW camp for captured German naval members. It was also used as a training base for many troops before they headed off to Europe.

Eugene's discharge date is listed as April 19, 1919 at Fort D.A. Russell, Wyoming, which is currently F.E. Warren Air Force Base. The base had an airfield that had become active that year, so it served as a convenient drop-off point for soldiers heading to the west.

The full transcription of Eugene's Honorable Discharge document is below:

[top of the page stamped Book 17 page 251]

Honorable Discharge from the United States Army


This is to certify, that Eugene M. Cutler A.S. # 828056 1/c Private, Neadjre[?] H.A.C.

THE UNITED STATES ARMY, as a testimonial of honest and faithful service is hereby honorably discharged from the military service of the United States by reason of Circular 106 W.D. 1918.

Said Eugene M. Cutler was born in Kilgore, in the state of Idaho. When enlisted he was 18 2/3 year of age and by occupation a farmer. He had blue eyes, brown hair, fair complexion, and was 5 feet 7 inches in height.

Given under my hand at Fort D.A. Russell, Wyo., this 19th day of April, one thousand nine hundred and nineteen.


H.C. Smith

Major A.G.D.

Post Personnel Adjutant



[top of the page stamped Book 17 page 252]

Enlistment Record

Name: Eugene M. Cutler; Grade: 1/C Private

Enlisted, or inducted, Jan. 5, 1918 at Ft. Douglas, Utah

Serving in First enlistment period at date of discharge

Prior service: none

Noncommissioned officer: never

Marksmanship, gunner qualification or rating: Not qualified

Horsemanship: Not mounted

Battles, engagements, skirmishes, expeditions: AEF

Knowledge of any vocation: farming

Wounds received in service: none

Physical condition when discharged: good

Typhoid prophylaxis completed: Jan. 29,1918

Paratyphoid prophylaxis completed:

Married or single: single

Character: Excellent

Remarks: Service: honest and faithful . No A.W.O.L. or absence under G.O. 31 W.D. 1912 and G.O.45 W.D. 1914

Entitled to travel pay to: Idaho Falls, Idaho

Signature of soldier: Eugene M. Cutler


C.R. Farmer

1st Liet. AGD

Ass’t Personnel Adjutant Commanding

[Bottom is signed] Basil G. Squier, [with a hand-written] 111 15 [above it]

[There is also a stamp on the back that reads:] Recorded Dec. 13, 1962, 3:00 PM book __ of __ page __ J.L. Lemmond (sp?), clerk and recorder Cascade County, Montana by J.J. Schmidt, deputy.

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