The Homecoming Episode

Coffins at Antwerp

Image used from Lisa Budreau's Bodies of War: World War I and the Politics of Commemoration in America (New York: New York University Press, 2010)

At the close of the First World War, the US Government gave the American people a choice unlike that of any other nation: to leave their dead loved ones where they fell, or repatriate them to the US for burial at home. Of the 116 000 dead, over 45 000 families made the choice to bring their dead home. In this episode, RAI Fellow Dr Alice Kelly speaks to Dr Lisa Budreau, Kevin Fitzpatrick and Professor Steven Trout about how and why the Americans did this. What impact did this homecoming have on the ways Americans remember the First World War today? Is WWI really a ‘forgotten’ war in the US?

Download this episode here