Ellis Beesley Jr. 1st Gas Regiment WWI

Ellis Beesley Jr. served in World War One as a member of Co B 1st Gas Regiment of the 13th engineers Battalion  He grew up in Newark   His parents had emigrated from England in the 1880’s His father was a hatter / furrier and after Ellis returned from the war he worked in the same trade. The 1st Gas regiment was literally the first gas regiment in the Army.  In 1918 General Pershing noted that the Germans had introduced both poison gas and flame throwers to the battlefield. He felt that the best countermeasure was to match them thus the Gas and Flame regiment was born. Mostly made up of volunteers draftees were used to fill out the ranks before the unit went overseas. They arrived in France never having trained with any gas warfare equipment they spent the first weeks assigned to the front training under a British Chemical Warfare Unit and under fire. The unit distinguished itself time and again with Ellias Beesleys’ Co B earning just by itself consisting of 2 offices and 32 enlisted men a medal for gallantry under fire.  Research by Wesley Shelton

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