Photographed is a tired U.S. Army Signal Corp dispatch rider transporting homing pigeons in his Indian sidecar to the front in Northwestern France, Spring 1918.

Thanksgiving 1918; the world was taking its first steps into a new era, into a new, modern civilization built of from the wreckage of mankind’s madness. The gruesome tragedy of it all was unavoidable, but so too was the immense relief and the immeasurable hope. Thousands of American soldiers would remain along the putrid battlefronts and fractured villages of France and Belgium for months to come, while tables across the country sat places at empty seats, waiting for their young heroes to return. For the soldiers abroad though, the U.S. Army spared no expense providing them with a hearty Thanksgiving feast, a reminder of home and the good days to come. This poem, credited to anonymous author was printed across the top of a menu for one such feast given to the Second Aviation Instruction Center in Tours France, November 28th, 1918.

Now sit down ye warriors bold,

eat, drink, and sing songs as in days of old.

Tis said that man and beast and bird some day has its inning.

The turn comes now for men who fight;

give thanks above “La Guerre est Finie.”

I hope your’s is a good day today, Happy Thanksgiving.