Sunday, June 29, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #23: Bachelor Brothers in WWI

Yesterday was the 100th anniversary of the flashpoint that started WWI. It reminded me that one of my Farkas great uncles had been a very reluctant conscript.

Julius Farkas (1892-1969) signed his WWI draft registration card in June, 1917, with the notation that he had a "conscientious objection" to the war (see below). Julius and his younger brother, Peter Farkas (1894-1961), were close throughout their lives. Peter also registered for WWI but didn't mention any objection.

Both brothers were drafted and served in the war.

Peter (service record, left) quickly rose through the ranks from private first class to corporal to sergeant during his period of service, May 1918 to March 1919. His service in the 152 Depot Brigade was at Camp Upton, NY, processing recruits and then processing newly returned soldiers at the end of WWI.

Julius, the reluctant soldier, became a cook (see his service record, below) and served from March, 1918 to August, 1919. He was also in a depot brigade, after initial training.
After the war, the Bachelor Brothers, as they were known in the family, were a quiet, affable presence, living together, often operating a dairy store together, and then moving in with one of their sisters late in life. Their stinky cigars were a feature at family get-togethers; my cousin B remembers the stinky cheeses they brought to picnics!

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