One hundred, five years, ago…
Hello Central! Give Me No Man’s Land is a World War I era song released in 1918. Lyrics were written by Sam M. Lewis and Joe Young. Jean Schwartz composed the music. The song was published by Waterson Berlin & Snyder, Co. of New York City. Artist Albert Wilfred Barbelle designed the sheet music cover, which features a photo of Al Jolson next to a shadow of a child on the phone. Explosions in No Man’s Land take up the rest of the red background. The song was written for both voice and piano. It was first introduced in the 1918 musical Sinbad.
The song tells the story of a child attempting to call her father in No Man’s Land. She is unable to reach him over the telephone because her father has been killed fighting on the Western Front.
There is very little else written about this song. When I have gone to the Tsort charts, with these older pieces, I have usually chosen whatever was at the top of the particular chart, for the particular year. This time, I looked, specifically, for this month in 1918. According to (old) US Billboard 1, this song was on the chart for eight weeks. ~Vic
I haven’t done a Military Monday since 2018. One-hundred, fifty-nine years ago, today…~Vic
In 1861, Virginia joined the Confederate States of America. Fearing that the Confederacy would take control of the [Navy yard] facility, the shipyard commander Charles Stewart McCauley ordered the burning of the shipyard.
[The USS Pawnee was] dispatched to Norfolk to secure the ships and stores of the Gosport Navy Yard. Arriving at Norfolk the night of [April 20], she found that all ships, save [the] USS Cumberland, had been scuttled […]. [So], an attempt was made to destroy the Naval stores and the dry dock. Their efforts were largely unsuccessful but, she took Cumberland in tow and saved the frigate.
On Saturday evening, at 9 o’clock, the Pawnee arrived from Washington with 200 volunteers, and 100 marines, besides her own crew […]. [At] once, the officers and crew of the Pawnee and Cumberland went to the Navy yard and, spiked and disabled the guns, [plus], threw the shot and small arms into the river. At 10 o’clock, the marines, who had been quartered in the barracks, fired them and came on board the Pawnee. A party of officers, [in the] meantime, were going through the different buildings and ships, distributing waste and turpentine, and laying a train, so as to blow up the dry dock. At this time, the scene was indescribably magnificent, all the buildings being in a blaze, and explosions, here and there, scattering the cinders in all directions.
The Confederate forces did, in fact, take over the shipyard and did so without armed conflict through an elaborate ruse orchestrated by civilian railroad builder William Mahone (then President of the Norfolk and Petersburg Railroad and soon to become a famous Confederate officer). He bluffed the Federal troops into abandoning the shipyard in Portsmouth by running a single passenger train into Norfolk with great noise and whistle-blowing […]. [T]hen, much more quietly, [he sent] it back west […]. [He returned] the same train, again, creating the illusion of large numbers of arriving troops [with] the Federals listening in Portsmouth across the Elizabeth River (and just barely out of sight).
Burning of Gosport Navy Yard (The New York Times)
The History of Norfolk Naval Shipyard (The Virginian-Pilot Online)
This Day in Naval History (US Navy Website)
How Fear, Deception and Indecision Nearly Destroyed Norfolk Naval Shipyard (USN History)
Norfolk Naval Shipyard (Wikipedia)
Clip from Hearts in Bondage (1936)