Sergeant Stubby

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Sergeant Stubby
Sergeant Stubby.jpg
Sergeant Stubby c. 1920
Born 1916
Died March 16, 1926 (aged 9–10)[1]
Place of display Smithsonian "The Price of Freedom" exhibition
Allegiance  United States of America
Service/branch Seal of the United States Department of War.png United States Army
Years of service 1917-1918
Rank WW1-Sergeant.svg Sergeant
Unit 102nd Infantry Regiment, 26th (Yankee) Division
Battles/wars

World War I

Awards Humane Education Society Gold Medal
Wound stripe
Other work Georgetown Hoyas' mascot

Sergeant Stubby (1916 – March 16, 1926) was a dog who is the official mascot of the 102nd Infantry Regiment (United States) and was assigned to the 26th (Yankee) Division in World War I. He served for 18 months and participated in seventeen battles on the Western Front. He saved his regiment from surprise mustard gas attacks, found and comforted the wounded, and once caught a German soldier by the seat of his pants, holding him there until American soldiers found him.[citation needed] His actions were well-documented in contemporary American newspapers.[2][3][4]

Stubby has been called the most decorated war dog of World War I, and the only dog to be nominated for rank and then promoted to sergeant through combat,[5] a claim having no official documentary evidence, but recognized in connection with an exhibition at the Smithsonian Institution.[5][2][3]

Stubby is the subject of a 2018 animated film.

Early life[edit]

Stubby was described in contemporaneous news items as a Bull Terrier or Boston Terrier.[4][6] Describing him as a dog of "uncertain breed", Ann Bausum wrote that "The brindle-patterned pup probably owed at least some of his parentage to the evolving family of Boston Terriers, a breed so new that even its name was in flux: Boston Round Heads, American Bull Terriers, and Boston Bull Terriers."[7] Stubby was found wandering the grounds of the Yale University campus in New Haven, Connecticut in July 1917, while members of the 102nd Infantry were training. The dog hung around as the men drilled and one soldier, Corporal Robert Conroy, developed a fondness for him.[3] When it came time for the outfit to ship out, Conroy hid Stubby on board the troop ship. As they were getting off the ship in France, he hid Stubby under his overcoat without detection.[8] Upon discovery by Conroy's commanding officer, Stubby saluted him as he had been trained to in camp, and the commanding officer allowed the dog to stay on board.[5]

Military service[edit]

Sergeant Stubby wearing his coat and medals

Stubby served with the 102nd Infantry Regiment in the trenches in France for 8 months and participated in four offensives and 17 battles. He entered combat on February 5, 1918, at Chemin des Dames, north of Soissons, and was under constant fire, day and night for over a month. In April 1918, during a raid to take Seicheprey, Stubby was wounded in the foreleg by the retreating Germans throwing hand grenades. He was sent to the rear for convalescence, and as he had done on the front was able to improve morale. When he recovered from his wounds, Stubby returned to the trenches. He ultimately had two wound stripes.[3][9]

In his first year of battle Stubby was injured by mustard gas. After he recovered, he returned with a specially designed gas mask to protect him.[10] Also, he learned to warn his unit of poison gas attacks, located wounded soldiers in no man's land, and—since he could hear the whine of incoming artillery shells before humans—became very adept at letting his unit know when to duck for cover. He was solely responsible for capturing a German spy in the Argonne, leading to the commander of the 102 Infantry to nominate Stubby for the rank of sergeant.[5] However, whether Stubby was actually promoted or even an official member of the Army has been disputed.[8] Following the retaking of Château-Thierry by the US, the women of the town made Stubby a chamois coat on which were pinned his many medals. He also helped free a French town from the Germans.[citation needed] He was later injured in the chest and leg by a grenade. At the end of the war, Robert Conroy smuggled Stubby home.[5]

After the war[edit]

After returning home, Stubby became a celebrity and marched in, and normally led, many parades across the country. He met Presidents Woodrow Wilson, Calvin Coolidge, and Warren G. Harding.[5] In 1921 General John J. Pershing presented a gold medal from the Humane Education Society to Stubby, which was the subject of a famous photograph.[3][4][9][11] Starting in 1921, he attended Georgetown University Law Center with Conroy, and became the Georgetown Hoyas' team mascot.[11] He would be given the football at halftime and would nudge the ball around the field to the amusement of the fans.[12][13]

Stubby died in his sleep in 1926.[3] After his death, he was preserved with his skin mounted on a plaster cast. Conroy presented Stubby to the Smithsonian in 1956.

Legacy[edit]

Sergeant Stubby's brick at the Liberty Memorial

Stubby received an obituary in the New York Times following his death in 1926. The obituary was half a page, which was much longer than the obituaries of many notable people of the time.[11]

Stubby was the subject of a portrait by "Capitol artist" Charles Ayer Whipple.[4] He was featured in the Brave Beasts exhibit at the Legermuseum in Delft, The Netherlands July 18, 2008 - April 13, 2009.[14] During a ceremony held on Armistice Day in 2006, a brick was placed in the Walk of Honor at the Liberty Memorial in Kansas City to commemorate Sergeant Stubby.[15] Stubby was the subject of at least four books.[8][16][17][18] In 2014, BBC Schools World War One series used Stubby as a Famous Figure to help teach children about the war, along with creating an animated comic strip to illustrate his life.[19][20]

Stubby has his portrait on display at the West Haven Military Museum in Connecticut.[8]

Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero is an animated feature-length film based on the life and times of Stubby, which was theatrically released on April 13, 2018.[21][22] The film features the voices of Logan Lerman,[23] Helena Bonham Carter,[24] and Gérard Depardieu,[25] with music by Academy Award nominee Patrick Doyle. The animation was made by the studio Mikros Image.[26] It has also been endorsed as an official project of the United States World War I Centennial Commission.[27]

The descendants of Robert Conroy (Stubby's inseparable companion) are driving an effort to create and place a life-size bronze statue of Stubby in the Connecticut Trees of Honor Memorial at Veteran's Memorial Park in Middletown, Connecticut in May 2018. The statue will pay tribute to fallen Connecticut veterans. Both Stubby and Robert Conroy were from Connecticut.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bausum, Ann; Sharpe, David E., Foreword (2014). Sergeant Stubby: How a Stray Dog and His Best Friend Helped Win World War I and Stole the Heart of a Nation (Print). Washington, D.C: National Geographic. p. 220. ISBN 978-1426213106. 
  2. ^ a b "Stubby, World War I Canine Hero 1921". History wired. Smithsonian Institution. Archived from the original on November 17, 2014. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f Kane, Gillian; Larson-Walker, Lisa, Illustrator (May 7, 2014). "Sergeant Stubby: America's original dog of war fought bravely on the Western Front—then helped the nation forget the Great War's terrible human toll". Slate.com. Archived from the original on July 13, 2014. Retrieved July 13, 2014.  Reprinted in Kane, Gillian (May 24, 2014). "The story of Sergeant Stubby, WWI's most decorated dog". Stars & Stripes. Archived from the original on July 1, 2014. Retrieved July 17, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Stubby's Obituary: Stubby of A.E.F. Enters Valhalla". The New York Times. Connecticut Military History. April 4, 1926 – July 16, 2003. Archived from the original on August 2, 2014. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f ""The Price of Freedom" exhibition". Smithsonian Institution. Archived from the original on June 24, 2014. Retrieved July 14, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Evening Public Ledger. (Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, July 09, 1921, NIGHT EXTRA, Image 18". Chroniclingamerica.loc.gov. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Library of Congress. July 9, 1921. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved February 6, 2016. 
  7. ^ Bausum, Ann; Sharpe, David E., Foreword (2014). Sergeant Stubby: How a Stray Dog and His Best Friend Helped Win World War I and Stole the Heart of a Nation (Print). Washington, D.C: National Geographic. p. 23. ISBN 978-1426213106. 
  8. ^ a b c d Bausum, Ann; Sharpe, David E., Foreword (2014). Sergeant Stubby: How a Stray Dog and His Best Friend Helped Win World War I and Stole the Heart of a Nation (Print). Washington, D.C: National Geographic. p. 112. ISBN 978-1426213106. 
  9. ^ a b "Dog Hero Again Honored". Roundup Record-Tribune & Winnett Times. October 28, 1921. p. 10. 
  10. ^ Marie Lux, Anna. "Janesville author breathes new life into Stubby the war dog". The Janesville Gazette (WI). 2014.
  11. ^ a b c Martin, Major General Thaddeus (April 12, 2011). "Stubby the Military Dog". Connecticut Military department. Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved February 6, 2016. 
  12. ^ "A Connecticut Hero: Sgt. Stubby". Archived from the original on January 17, 2015. Retrieved January 9, 2015. 
  13. ^ *Richmond, Derek (November 4, 2003). From Mascot to Military, Stubby Left Pawprints on Hilltop and Beyond. The Hoya. Georgetown, Washington, D.C: Georgetown University. Archived from the original on October 29, 2014. 
  14. ^ "Brave Beasts". Legermuseum. July 18, 2008. Archived from the original on December 9, 2009. Retrieved December 21, 2009. 
  15. ^ "Stubby". Snopes.com. November 11, 2006. Retrieved July 14, 2014. 
  16. ^ Bausum, Ann (May 13, 2014). Stubby the War Dog: The True Story of World War I's Bravest Dog (Hardcover/audio). Washington D.C.: National Geographic Children's Books. p. 80. ISBN 1426314868. 
  17. ^ Glendinning, Richard; Glendinning, Sally; Amundsen, Richard (October 1978). Stubby, Brave Soldier Dog. Famous Animal Stories (Hardcover). Champaign, Illinois: Garrard Pub. Co./Olympic Marketing Corp. p. 48. ISBN 0811648648. 
  18. ^ George, Isabel (March 8, 2012). The Most Decorated Dog In History: Sergeant Stubby (Print) (Kindle ed.). Harper Collins. p. 304. ASIN B00739VSKW. 
  19. ^ "BBC Schools World War One". BBC. Archived from the original on February 19, 2015. 
  20. ^ "Animation: Sergeant Stubby". BBC. Archived from the original on July 4, 2015. 
  21. ^ "Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero". Official Homepage. Archived from the original on March 11, 2016. Retrieved March 11, 2016. 
  22. ^ "Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero". IMDb. Archived from the original on January 8, 2016. Retrieved March 11, 2016. 
  23. ^ Pictures, Fun Academy Motion. "Logan Lerman Enlists for Fun Academy Motion Pictures' Animated Feature SGT. STUBBY". www.prnewswire.com. Archived from the original on March 8, 2017. Retrieved March 8, 2017. 
  24. ^ "Helena Bonham Carter joins cast of animated tale "Sgt Stubby"". The Slanted. July 26, 2016. Archived from the original on July 27, 2016. Retrieved July 28, 2016. 
  25. ^ Studio, Fun Academy Motion Pictures. "Award Winning Actor Gérard Depardieu Joins Cast of Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero". www.prnewswire.com. Archived from the original on July 15, 2016. Retrieved July 28, 2016. 
  26. ^ Hero, Sgt Stubby: An American (2017-01-24). "Fun Academy and Mikros Image's SGT. STUBBY Slated to Open on April 13, 2018". Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero. Retrieved 2017-06-12. [permanent dead link]
  27. ^ "Stubby - An American Hero Named Official Film Partner Of The United States World War I Centennial Commission". PRNewswire. November 12, 2015. Archived from the original on March 11, 2016. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Bausum, Ann; Sharpe, David E., Foreword (2014). Sergeant Stubby: How a Stray Dog and His Best Friend Helped Win World War I and Stole the Heart of a Nation (Print). Washington, D.C: National Geographic. p. 112. ISBN 978-1426213106. 
  • Bausum, Ann (May 13, 2014). Stubby the War Dog: The True Story of World War I's Bravest Dog (Hardcover/audio). Washington D.C.: National Geographic Children's Books. p. 80. ISBN 1426314868. 
  • Furstinger, Nancy (April 12, 2016). Paws of Courage: True Stories of Heroic Dogs that Protect and Serve (hardcover) (1st ed.). National Geographic Children's Books. p. 160. ISBN 978-1426323775. 
  • Garden, Joe; Pauls, Chris; Ginsburg, Janet (October 9, 2007). The Dangerous Book for Dogs: A Parody by Rex and Sparky (hardcover) (1st ed.). Villard. p. 208. ISBN 978-0345503701. 
  • George, Isabel (March 8, 2012). The Most Decorated Dog In History: Sergeant Stubby (Print) (Kindle ed.). Harper Collins. p. 304. ASIN B00739VSKW. 
  • Glendinning, Richard; Glendinning, Sally; Amundsen, Richard (October 1978). Stubby, Brave Soldier Dog. Famous Animal Stories (Hardcover). Champaign, Illinois: Garrard Pub. Co./Olympic Marketing Corp. p. 48. ISBN 0811648648. 
  • Goodavage, Maria (March 15, 2012). Soldier Dogs (Hardcover) (1 ed.). New York: Dutton Adult. p. 293. ISBN 0525952780. 
  • Stone, Barry (March 1, 2012). The Diggers' Menagerie: Mates, Mascots and Marvels - True Stories of Animals Who Went to War. Australia: HarperCollins/ABC Books. p. 215. ASIN B0062GO7FK. }

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