Contact the GG Archives

Atlanta, Georgia USA

Sixth Unit of American Telephone Operators Has Arrived in France - 1918

Sixth Unit Shares in Telephone Work in France Telephone Operators Doing Overseas Service in France “Plug In" for Victory.

Sixth Unit Shares in Telephone Work in France Telephone Operators Doing Overseas Service in France “Plug In" for Victory. The Telephone Review, October 1918. GGA Image ID # 1980c4cb71

Left to Right—Back Row:

  1. Miss Ellen Disbrowe, 7 1/2 years. Pacific Tel. & Tel. Co.;
  2. Mrs. Mary Steele, 2 years, N. E. Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  3. Miss Jane E. Conroy, 9 years. Bell Tel. of Penn.;
  4. Miss Elizabeth Anne Brown, 3 years. Southwestern Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  5. Miss Anna M. Ostrander, 4 years, Pacific Tel. A Tel. Co.:
  6. Miss Mabel Lapp, years, Chicago Tel. Co.;
  7. Miss Anna Campbell, 9 years, Mountain States Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  8. Miss Louise Gordon, 15 years, Michigan State Tel. Co.;
  9. Miss Helms Greenlund, 8 years. Pacific TeL A Tel. Co.;
  10. Miss Corah Bartlett, 9y% years, Michigan State Tel. Co.;
  11. Miss M. Beryl Broderick, trained at Scranton, Pa., and Detroit;
  12. Miss Lydia E. Erickson, 12 years, Chicago Tel. Co.;
  13. Miss Rosemary de Montauzan, trained at Trenton, N. J.;
  14. Miss Abbie Mitchell, 7 years, N. E. Tel A Tel. Co.;
  15. Miss Agnes Houley, 8 years, N. E. Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  16. Miss Helen Bixby, trained at Chicago and Camp Dix, N. J.;
  17. Miss Hazel Hammond, 7 years. Mountain States TeL A Tel. Co.;
  18. Miss Anna Swanson, 7 years, Mountain States Tel. A Tel. Co.

Left to Right—Front Row:

  1. Miss Delta Hagan, 4 years, Northwestern Tel. Exchange Co.;
  2. Miss Eliz. Horsman, 15 years, Chicago TeL Co.;
  3. Miss Maude Johnson, 4 years. Pacific Tel. A Tel. Co.:
  4. Miss Margaret Olker, 9 years. Northwestern Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  5. Miss Mary Story, trained at San Francisco and New Haven;
  6. Miss Frances Laney, trained at San Francisco and New Haven;
  7. Miss Isabelle Macdonald, 2yt years, N. E. Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  8. Miss Oleda Joure, 3yt years, Michigan State Tel. Co.;
  9. Miss Marion C. Swan, 12 years, N. E. Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  10. Miss Mae Ganley, 3 years, N. E. Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  11. Miss Hortense Levy, trained at Trenton, N. T.
  12. Miss Elsie Wolloff, 7 years, N. E. Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  13. Miss Bernadette Doucette, 5 years. Pacific Tel. A Tel. Co.;
  14. Miss Minnie Goldman, trained at Chicago and Camp Dix, N. T.;
  15. Miss Ruth Boucher, 3 years. Pacific Tel. A Tel. Co.:
  16. Miss Stella Russell, 8 years,Nebraska Tel. Co.;
  17. Miss Celia Grimeke, 12 years, Mountain States Tel. A Tel. Co.

U.S. Telephone Operators in France Share Glory of American Drive

IN a special cable dispatch to The Sun from the London Times Service, word is conveyed to us of the "workings" of our initial drive for Germany.

Although the Germans suspected the attack, it says, they were completely surprised at its force and concentration, which were due in large part to the perfect communication system which the American army had built up and was trying out for the first time.

It was possible, through this system and through the excellent and faithful work of the operators, for the army to move forward with precision and unity. Corps and head quarters were able to get constantly in touch with each other by telephone as easily as two business men talking in New York.

To quote, "These women (the American operators) . . . are plug ging their calls now as never before, and are plugging them to save Amer ican lives."

Our operators have made good, as everyone knew they would. What was the mainstay of our army in this, its first big blow, was, strangely enough, what disintegrated the German troops and destroyed their morale.

In a communication from the American Army Headquarters on the Lorraine front to the Times, we learn that faulty liaison work left enemy units cut off from Headquarters and each other in a great many cases.

The cable adds: We have now heard the tale from prisoners of division calling to division in vain for aid, little knowing that the source from which it sought help was in even more desperate straits.

Where the German troops were willing to fight,—which was not everywhere,—they were frequently left in such sad case by faulty liaison work that they had no option but to surrender.

Such news must be thrilling to the girls in the sixth unit, just arrived in France to "carry on" the work that their sisters at arms have so ably started.

The unit is composed of twenty-eight experienced long distance operators taken from the forces of the Bell System in various parts of the country, and seven of the French-English speaking operators who have been in training for about eight months, and who have qualified as long distance operators.

Lieutenant William F. Packard, Jr., of the Signal Corps, formerly of the Western Union Telegraph Company, was in command of the unit. To know that they are to be privileged to perform so vital a task, is a "thrill that comes once in a life-time."

The new unit, naturally, is inspired with the same high aims that sent the other five across to share in the fortunes of war, and to give to their country that which they above all others were best fitted to give, telephone service. To do one's best, to serve with enthusiasm and a true heart,—that is an honor indeed.

"U.S. Telephone Operators in France Share Glory of American Drive: Sixth Unit Has Now Arrived," in The Telephone Review, Vol. 9, No. 10, October 1918, p. 276.

Return to Top of Page

World War I
Hello Girls in the Great War
GG Archives

Telephone Operators in the Great War

 

 

 

Improve Your Family History Through Illustrations

Make Your Family History More Readable Through Illustrations From the GG Archives