They Called Them Soldier Boys
A Texas Infantry Regiment in World War I
Texas History - Military History
6 x 9, 352 pp.
21 b&w photos. 5 maps. Notes.
Pub Date: 03/05/2013
War and the Southwest Series
Price:        $29.95


Published by University of North Texas Press

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They Called Them Soldier Boys

A Texas Infantry Regiment in World War I

Gregory W. Ball


Winner of two Communicator Awards for Cover (overall) and Cover (design), 2013.

They Called Them Soldier Boys offers an in-depth study of soldiers of the Texas National Guard’s Seventh Texas Infantry Regiment in World War I, through their recruitment, training, journey to France, combat, and their return home. Gregory W. Ball focuses on the fourteen counties in North, Northwest, and West Texas where officers recruited the regiment’s soldiers in the summer of 1917, and how those counties compared with the rest of the state in terms of political, social, and economic attitudes.

In September 1917 the “Soldier Boys” trained at Camp Bowie, near Fort Worth, Texas, until the War Department combined the Seventh Texas with the First Oklahoma Infantry to form the 142d Infantry Regiment of the 36th Division. In early October 1918, the 142d Infantry, including more than 600 original members of the Seventh Texas, was assigned to the French Fourth Army in the Champagne region and went into combat for the first time on October 6. Ball explores the combat experiences of those Texas soldiers in detail up through the armistice of November 11, 1918.

GREGORY W. BALL received his Ph.D. in United States History from the University of North Texas in 2010. He served on active duty with the USAF from 1995-2006 and remains an active member of the USAF Reserve. Ball serves as a historian for the United States Air Force in San Antonio.


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