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World War I activities collection

 Collection — Folder: 1-2
Identifier: RITArc-0008

Scope and Contents

The World War I activities collection consists of a variety of documents on the war-related activities of the Mechanics Institute during World War I. The collection contains a report on the Mechanics Institute's Student Army Training Corps and a list of students and alumni killed during the war. The collection also includes correspondence from Edward R. Foreman, the historian for the city of Rochester, requesting information on the Mechanics Institute's role during World War I. In addition to the correspondence, there is a draft for several chapters on the Rochester Athenaeum and Mechanics Institute's part in the war effort.

Dates

  • 1919-1922

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to researchers.

Historical Information: World War I activities

During World War I, the Rochester Athenaeum and Mechanics Institute (RAMI) played an active role in the war effort at home. Upon the United States entering the war, RAMI began tailoring its programs to meet the needs of a country at war. A program for training nurses was established and women were invited to study mechanical drawing to fill jobs left vacant by men serving overseas. In response to a coal shortage in the fall of 1917, RAMI began offering classes on fuel conservation. Similarly, the Institute initiated a study on the dehydration of vegetables as a means to battle scurvy amongst soldiers. Looking ahead to the war's end, RAMI also offered classes in occupational therapy and began planning training programs for injured veterans who could not return to their former jobs.

In 1918, the United States War Department established a Student Army Training Corp, designed to train enlisted soldiers in trades and vocations seen as essential to the military's success. RAMI was selected as one of 157 colleges and trade schools to participate in the program and received its first contingent of approximately 250 students on May 7, 1918. Although the original term was for eight weeks, the War Department renewed its contract with RAMI, extending the program another eight months. RAMI was expected to provide instruction and housing for the enlisted soldiers who attended each program term. Students of the program were trained in carpentry, machinery, automobile and ignition, electrical construction, pattern making, wood turning, forging, and electricity. The program was demobilized on December 5, 1918, following the armistice on November 11th of the same year.

Extent

2 Folder(s)

Language

English

Overview

Documents related to the activities of the Rochester Athenaeum and Mechanics Institute during World War I. The collection contains a report on the Mechanics Institute's Student Army Training Corp and a list of individuals connected to the Mechanics Institute that were killed during the war. Additionally, the collection contains correspondence between the Mechanics Institute and the Rochester city historian regarding the Institute's role in wartime activities.

Arrangement

Materials are contained within 2 folders. One folder contains a report on the Student Army Training Corp and a list of causalities, while the other contains correspondence and information related to the Rochester city historian's research on the Mechanics Institute's role during World War I.

Physical Location

C.S. South, Shelf 811, Box 227

Related Materials

Processing Information

Finding aid created by Lara Nicosia in November 2010.
Title
World War I activities collection
Subtitle
RIT Archives
Status
Published
Author
Lara Nicosia
Date
01 November 2010
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the RIT Archive Collections Repository

Contact:
RIT Libraries
Wallace Center
90 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester NY 14623 USA
(585) 475-4613