BRISTOL - The Memorial Military Museum has moved its April 19 program on the 100 year anniversary of the Battle of Seicheprey to American Legion Post 2, which is named after the battle.
The program, which was initially scheduled to be held from 2 to 4 p.m. at the recently renovated Bristol Historical Society at 98 Summer St., has been moved to American Legion Seicheprey Post 2, located at 22 Hooker Court but will be held at the same time.
Carol Denehy of the Memorial Military Museum said that the reason for the move was due to window coverings not being installed in the event room until April 23. This could have interfered with a 2 p.m. power point presentation.
The Memorial Military Museum program will be led by speaker and retired Air Force Colonel Terry Finnegan. It will focus on 73 Bristol men who left their hometown to serve in Company D of the 102nd Infantry Regiment of the “Yankee Division.”
On April 20 and 21, 1918, for 24 hours, they fought back against a German blitzkrieg attack in the ruined village of Seicheprey, France.
“Bristol responded so dramatically to that historic battle,” said Denehy. It was the first time American Division fought solely against the Germans. They previously had been in battle with the support of French troops. 3,000 Germans were determined to make an example of the novice Americans and came out full force.
Artillery barrages began at 3 a.m., followed by elite Storm Troopers attacking with machine guns, flame throwers, etc. There was a great deal of hand to hand combat with bayonets. The Americans held their own so much that the German command wrote about them with admiration.
Bristol recognized the heroism and sacrifices of those involved in that historic battle by naming the local American Legion “Seicheprey Post 2”, publishing letters from France in the newspaper, greeting returning soldiers with parades, erecting a monument and by naming Memorial Boulevard.