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Exhibition Echoes of the Great War: American Experiences of World War I

Dan Smith. World War—In the Service of the Nation, ca. 1918. Color photomechanical print with photograph of unidentified soldier, ca. 1918. William A. Gladstone Collection, Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (187.00.00)

Certificate of Service

Though the American World War I soldier pictured here is unidentified, his uniform indicates that he served with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Their three-towered castle appears on his collar insignia and is echoed in artist Dan Smith's commemorative certificate design that also features symbols for Infantry, Cavalry, Field Artillery, Coast Artillery, Signal Corps, the Aviation Section of the Signal Corps, and the Medical Corps. Flanked below them are allied country flags while Columbia, representing the United States, presides above, gazing toward a battle scene. More than one million African Americans responded to the draft with more than 350,000 serving in segregated military units.