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Indiana. National Guard.  Artillery, Battery B | Purdue University Libraries, Archives and Special Collections

Name: Indiana. National Guard.  Artillery, Battery B

Historical Note: Battery B was organized in November 1914 from Purdue students and faculty interested in forming an artillery unit.  At the time, the Purdue Cadet Corps consisted entirely of infantry.  Because the Cadet Corps was unable to obtain the cannon or horses necessary to form a battery of field artillery, Battery B members agreed to organize as an Indiana National Guard unit.  In the summer of 1916, during the so-called “Border War” with Mexico (1910-1919), the battery was mobilized and sent to Texas to help prevent against border incursions by Mexican revolutionaries hostile to the United States. By the end of the summer, 117,000 National Guardsmen were performing similar duty along the southern borders of Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Texas.  At the time of its mobilization on June 23, 1916, Battery B consisted of 163 officers and men, all but three of whom were Purdue students or faculty.  From July to September, Battery B performed guard duty at several irrigation pumping stations along the Rio Grande.  In late September, President Woodrow Wilson issued an executive order, releasing Battery B from federal service.   Many members of the battery went on to serve in the U.S. Army during World War I.  On May 6, 1967, seventeen former members of Battery B held a special 50th Year Reunion at Purdue.

Martin, J. Holmes. “The Men of Battery B.” Purdue Alumnus (1967): 17-19.

“Students Were Summer Soldiers,” Lafayette Journal and Courier, June 3, 1967

“Border War (1910-1919),” from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Border_War_(1910-1919)

Note Author: John Michael Foster

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