I wish that I had bid on this Ebay item.

Scarce Williams College

World War I Service

Large Table Medal

Engraved on the rim

FREDERICK E. STEWARD SERGT

all the issued medals were engraved this way

SGT Steward Entered service as Pvt. 1st Class in the 63rd Balloon Company U.S. Signal Corps on March 16, 1918; Sgt. 1st Class in the 50th Balloon Company at Ft. Omaha, Nebraska. Discharged January 15, 1919.

He was a member of the class of 1912

He was a member of the Enlisted Reserve Corps which was made up of technical experts which likely explains why he was not commissioned during the war. He was living in Ramsey County, MN at the time of his enlistment.

Questions:

1) Does anyone know more about the history of these medals?

2) What current military mission will seem as out-of-date in 2108 as “Balloon Company” seems in 2008? My guess is manned fighter jets.

3) What does it say about the changes at Williams over the last 100 years that the College awarded a medal to every single veteran then but does not deign to award a Bicentennial Medal to an Eph veteran of the current war? (I nominated Kathy Sharpe Jones ’79 and Bunge Cooke ’98 this year. Neither was selected.)

I have written hundreds of thousands of words on EphBlog over the last five years, none better than these or these. Who will serve so that my daughters might sleep safely in their beds at night?

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