Zillman to speak in WWI series

BAR HARBOR — Donald Zillman will speak at the Jesup Memorial Library at two events in the World War I and America series on Monday, March 12.

First at 9:30 a.m., Zillman will lead a facilitated discussion about the American experience on the home front during World War I, based on his book “Living the World War: A Weekly Exploration of the American Experience in World War I — Volume One.”

At 7 p.m., he will speak and sign copies of his book, which uses the Congressional Record and The New York Times to delve into the experiences of American citizens during the war, who, before mass communication, did not know what was happening overseas in real time. The book also explores how the experience of war and emerging national issues profoundly shaped America in the 21st century.

Zillman is the Edward Godfrey Professor of Law at the University of Maine School of Law. In his career, he served as an Army Judge Advocate and a professor of law at Arizona State University and the University of Utah before coming to Maine as the dean of the University of Maine Law School. He also served as the president of the University of Maine at Presque Isle and as a visiting professor at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom. Both of these programs are free and open to the public, but registration is required for program at 9:30 a.m. To register, contact Melinda Rice at [email protected] or at 288-4245.

In the last event in the series, Maine State Historian Earle G. Shettleworth Jr. will give an illustrated talk March 29 about the role played by Maine men and women in World War I, especially here at home. Thirty-five thousand men and women across the state joined the military in 1917 and 1918 to fight in a “war to end all wars” that promised to “make the world safe for democracy.”

Maine civilians supported the war by purchasing $118.4 million in government bonds and $8.4 million in war savings stamps. Private sector relief programs operated by the American Red Cross, YMCA, YWCA and the Salvation Army also received generous contributions from the public. By the end of the war, each man, woman and child in the state had donated an average of $147 to the war effort. Newly unearthed historic photographs, many of them real photo postcards of the period, tell the story of recruitment, troop departures, parades, bond drives, shipbuilding, war-related industries and knitting socks for the soldiers. This chapter in Maine’s past comes alive in these century-old pictures.

These programs and the display are supported by a grant for “World War I and America,” a two-year national initiative of the Library of America presented in partnership with The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, the National World War I Museum and Memorial and other organizations with support from The National Endowment for the Humanities.

Contact Jesup Program Director Melinda Rice at [email protected] or 288-4245.

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