The book by: WILLIAM H. AMERINE, "ALABAMA'S OWN" is now available for a free download from Google books. The copyright by "EATON & GETTINGER" expired and Google scanned it and put it up for free download in many formats.
I was amazed that the original letter from Lieut. Richard B. Kelly, commander of company G, of the 167th Infantry of the 84th brigade, to the commander of the 42nd "rainbow" division (Douglas MacArthur I would think), recommending my uncle, Sidney Earnest Manning, for the Congressional Medal of Honor. Here's the extract.
The exploit of Corporal Sidney E. Manning, of Flomaton, Ala., stood out for nine months of continuous fighting as the most striking in the traditions of Company "G" of which he is a member, according to the commanding officer of the company, Lieut. Richard B. Kelly. The following description of the daring deed is contained in a letter from Lieut Kelly to the commander of the Forty Second Division, in which the corporal was recommended for a Medal of Honor:
Circumstances : On the morning of July 28, the second battalion of the One Hundred and Sixty Seventh Infantry forced a passage of the River Ourcq on the center of the front of the Forty-Second Division in the face of accurately placed artillery fire from guns of all calibers executed from the rear and from both flanks, and despite machine gun fire from the bald slopes north of the Ourcq River which dominated the riverbed and all creases and swales in the terrain leading to the northern heights of the Ourcq River.
This battalion was under orders to seize a foothold on the northern heights of the Onrcq River at a point between Sergy and the town of Nesles and exploit the successful passage of the river. Company "G" was in the center. The entire battalion in the face of the most violent machine gun concentrations from commanding positions on the steep heights above, carried the assault over the crest of the hill, which was taken by storm in hand-to-hand fighting. At this stage, about 10:30 in the morning, the platoon commander of the second (right) platoon of "G" Company, in which Platoon Corp. Manning was in command of an automatic rifle squad, was killed and the sergeant in command of the platoon was severely wounded.
Manning's squad, the automatic rifle gunner was killed and all but 35 men of the second platoon were either killed or severely wounded. Corp. Manning was himself severely wounded. He assumed command of the platoon. He pushed over the crest of the hill and led the platoon against an enemy strong point which dominated the entire valley of the Ourcq River and was wired, entrenched and strongly defended with machine guns.
During this time he was repeatedly and again severely wounded. He still pushed forward, and though isolated and far in advance of the assaulting troops of his battalion, took a foothold at the strong point and remained there until all of his platoon except seven men had been killed or wounded and no member of his automatic rifle squad remained. He himself, at their head and encouraging the survivors by his indomitable resolution, had received nine wounds in all parts of his body, of which at least four were serious. Alone and severely wounded, he directed the surviving members of his platoon to return to the rest of their company while he covered their movement This was finally and successfully accomplished, during which he held off the enemy who were not more than 50 yards away through his own unassisted efforts, with his automatic rifle which, with the necessary ammunition, he had, while still leading the platoon, taken from the fallen members of his automatic rifle squad, and, with the greatest self sacrifice and unspeakable heroism, covered the return of the survivors of his fallen platoon.
This done, he with difficulty made his way to the crest of the hill, from where he was dragged to safety.
This exploit stands out, after nine months of constant fighting of this company, as the strongest of its company traditions.
Richard B. Kelly, First Lieut, U. S. A., One Hundred and Sixty Seventh Infantry, commanding Company 'G'.
This is the best info ever, on the effort Uncle Sidney gave to earn the Medal of Honor. He refused to discuss this battle with anyone.
Uncle Sidney was named one of General John J. Pershing's "Immortal Ten"