Confronting the Modern Era
Confront TN at War 01 1st TN Vols Confront TN at War 02 Confederate Vets Confront TN at War 03 Children/Army Confront TN at War 04 Welcome/Parade Confront TN at War 05 Araon Weise Confront TN at War 06 MC Kirkpatrick Confront TN at War 07 30th in WWI

Tennesseans at War

After the devastation of the Civil War, Tennesseans, like other Americans, wanted to enjoy a time of peace.

Eventually the memories of the Civil War evolved from the bitterness of defeat to nostalgia about the war. Remembrance ceremonies, commemorative statues and clubs for war veterans or relatives of veterans became common.

At the end of the 1890s, war, this time between the United States and Spain, broke out again. The Spanish American war was fought in Cuba and the Philippines. Tennesseans served in this war under the Stars and Stripes.

In 1918, Tennesseans again went to war as the United States joined war underway in Europe. More than 80,000 Tennesseans joined or were drafted into the armed forces to serve in World War I.

A Tennessean, Alvin C. York, who at first had religious doubts about fighting in the war, became the most decorated soldier of the war.

Picture Credits:
  • Photograph of soldiers from Company C, First Tennessee Volunteers, Spanish-American War. This photo was taken in 1898 or 1899 at Camp Merritt in California. Tennessee State Library and Archives.
  • Photograph of Tennessee Confederate Veterans. This photo was taken in Dallas, Texas at a Confederate Veterans Reunion and is dated April 2, 1902. All of the men pictured are from Maury County and its surrounding areas. Tennessee State Library and Archives.
  • Photograph of children playing army. The photo was taken in 1900 and shows six young children dressed up in army uniforms. They are posing with an American flag and a wagon in the background. Blount County Public Library. 
  • Postcard showing a welcome home parade for World War I soldiers. The parade took place on Market Street in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The caption at the bottom reads, “Celebration 30th Division April 3, 1919.” Chattanooga-Hamilton County Bicentennial Library.
  • Photograph entitled “Aaron Weise in Uniform.” The photograph features Aaron Weise in his World War I uniform in 1917. Weise served as an aviator and was eventually promoted to captain. Albert Gore Sr. Research Center, Middle Tennessee State University
  • Photograph of “M. C. Kirkpatrick in Cleveland, Tennessee.” This photograph was taken in 1916 and features Melvin Kirkpatrick saluting in his World War I uniform. Cleveland Public Library.
  • Stereograph showing World War I soldiers in battle. A stereograph is a type of photograph. This photo features American soldiers inside a trench and fighting a battle. Tennessee State Museum Collection, 2002.3.79.20.

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