Military History Talks 2017

Our first military history talk of 2017

 

Visit all of our videos on VBMA TV

This year our talks will be on the Third Thursday of the month, from 6:30PM to 7:30 PM at the Marshall House, at the Vancouver Barracks.  Talks will be held from January to June 2017.  There is one exception, in May, the talk will be on Wednesday, May 3.  Our hosts, the Fort Vancouver National Trust have donated the use of this building, and their employee's to support our efforts.   Presentations will last about 60 minutes.  This no admission fee.  The street address for the Marshall House is, 1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  9861.  To get there from Interstate 5, take Exit 1c.  Head east on Mill Plain Blvd to the first light.  Head south (right) on Fort Vancouver Way to the traffic circle.  Take the third exit, east on Evergreen Blvd to the second parking lot.  Park in this lot, the Marshall House is on the opposite side of the road.    The phone number for the Marshall House is: 360 574-3872

Download a list of our 2017 talks

Several VBMA members would also be happy to give many of the talks they have given in the past, to new groups of interested people. Please email us with your request. Contact VBMA at president@vbma.us

Thursday, 19 January 2017, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: Major Jefferson Davis, US Army (Ret.)
Topic related to Global War on Terrorism
Title:
Reminiscences of a Military Historian
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
253 223-0125

Jeff Davis deployed to Southwest Asia in 2002 and from 2003-2004.  He worked as a military historian, both authoring reports, as well as going from base to base interviewing soldiers about their experiences in the Global War on Terrorism.  While respecting the privacy of those he interviewed, Jeff will share some of the mostly humorous, often ironic experiences he had during his deployments.

 

Thursday, 16 February 2017, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: CW3 Daniel Sockle, US Army (Ret.)
Topic related to the Global War on Terrorism
Title: When Tomorrow Means More Than Yesterday - Can We "Trump" the Roots of Extremism?
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number, 360 693-3103

When humans start caring more about tomorrow than yesterday, about the lives of our children and future generations more than ghosts of the past, conflict arising from vengeance will fade into history.” We must find a way to extract our instincts for revenge from the human condition – particularly from the DNA of politicians, religious leaders, and a complicit media that perpetuates conflict and victimhood around the world, 365/24/7

  

Thursday, 16 March 2017, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: Speaker: Major Jefferson Davis, US Army (Ret.)
Topic related to Vancouver Barracks Officers
Title:
The Vancouver Barracks, Proving Ground for Generals
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number, 360 693-3103

The Vancouver Barracks was established in 1849, and was open as a military post until the new millennium.  In the 150+ years of history, many young officers served at the Vancouver Barracks, and later rose to the rank of general.  Jeff Davis will focus on many young officers who served from the 1849 to the early 1860s, and became generals in the Civil War.

 

Thursday, 20 April 2017, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker MSG Timothy Shotwell, US Army (Ret.)
Topic related to period from Vietnam War to Global War on Terrorism
Title: C-4 Does Not Float 
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number, 360 693-3103

Retired Master Sergeant Timothy Shotwell served in the U.S. Army and Army Reserves for over 30 years, serving from the Vietnam War to the Global War on Terrorism.  He will share many tales, some amusing, some not so amusing relating to his military experiences.

 

Wednesday, 3 May 2017, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: MSG Jack Giesen US Army (Ret.)
Topic related
to World War I Centennial
Subject:
The M1917 Army Ambulance    
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number, 360 693-3103

Over the past year, the Vancouver Barracks Military Association has constructed a replica of the Model 1917, US Army Ambulance, as part of their commemoration of the 100 year anniversary of World War I.  This talk will be the public unveiling of the completed ambulance.  Weather permitting, this talk will take place outside, where the audience can see the replica ambulance as well as uniforms and equipment.  If the weather is bad, the talk will take place indoors, but with replica uniforms, and video footage of the ambulance construction.

 

Thursday, 15 June 2017, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: Mr. James Moody
Topic related to The Spanish American War, and Moro War
Title:
The Other Spanish American War 
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number, 360 693-3103


Many people associate the Spanish American War with Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough Riders charging up San Juan Hill, in Cuba.  Fewer people know that the Spanish American War was fought in the Western Pacific, in places like Guam, and the Philippines.  Local historian James Moody knows a lot about that part of the war, and the conflict that raged afterward in what some people call the Moro War, or the Philippines Insurrection, because one of his ancestors fought there.  Come listen to James talk about this conflict, with its very personal associations.

 

 The talks described below were given by the VBMA in the past.  It may be possible for the presenters to give the talk again upon request.

2016 Talks

2015 Talks

2014 Talks

2013 Talks

2012 Talks

 

Our 2016 Talk Schedule:

 Thursday, 21 January 2016, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: Major Jefferson Davis, USAR (Ret.)
Subject: Guard House Tales from the Vancouver Barracks
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number is, 360 693-3103
See Flyer For the Event

 

Thursday, 18 February 2016, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: SSG Frazier Raymond US Army (Ret.)
Subject: Buffalo Soldiers and the Vancouver Barracks
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number is, 360 693-3103
See Flyer For the Event

 

Thursday, 17 March 2016, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: MSG Jack Giesen US Army (Ret.)
Subject: The US Army Ambulance Service in World War 
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number is, 360 693-3103
See Flyer For the Event

 

 Thursday, 21 April 2016, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker: CW3 Daniel Sockle, US Army (Ret.)
Subject: America’s Jihad: Joining Humanity’s Struggle with the Far Left, the Far Right, and other Extremists since 9/11        
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number is, 360 693-3103
See Flyer For the Event

 

Thursday, 19 May 2016, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker SGM Kelly Jones US Army (Ret.)
Subject: Changing Army Culture, A Female Perspective
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number is, 360 693-3103
See Flyer For the Event

 

Thursday, 16 June 2016, 6:30 - 7:30 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker Colonel Bruce Mulkey (Retired)
Subject: The Oregon Trail and Today’s Mass Migrations
The Marshall House
1301 Officer's Row, Vancouver, WA  98661
Marshall House phone number is, 360 693-3103
See Flyer For the Event

 

 

2015 Military History Talks

Downloadable flyer for the 2015 talk season.

Friday, 13 February 2015, 6 - 7 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker CW3 Daniel Sockle, US Army (Ret.)
Subject: ISIS/ISIL:  How Did The Islamic State Gain Power?
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

An Islamic State that exists beyond modern national borders has been the dream of many moderate and radical Muslims for centuries.  In 2014, a radical group of Islamists formed ISIL or ISIS, and began a campaign to create their own Islamic state in Southwest Asia.  Dan Sockle, a professional intelligence specialist and professor at Clark College will give a one hour presentation on the rise of ISIL, taken from his Clark College lecture course.  To learn more about his course, read the course syllabus.

 

Saturday 26 February 2015, 6 PM
Buffalo Soldiers History Event
Vancouver Barracks Red Cross Building
605 Barnes Road, Vancouver, WA 98660
See Flyer For the Event

Link to the Historic Trust, the event hosts and sponsors

 

Friday, 13 March 2015, 6 - 7 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker COL Larry Smith US Army (Ret.)
Subject: Special Operations Forces in Vietnam
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

The work of Special Operations Forces in Vietnam is a subject still shrouded in mystery.  What was their mission?  Where did they operate?  What were their tactics and who were their allies?  Retired Colonel Larry Smith was a Special Forces commander during the Vietnam War and he will talk about some of his experiences in what some have called, the Ten Thousand Day War.

 

Friday, 10 April 2015, 6 - 7 PM
Military History Talk
Speaker Christopher Heagy
Subject: The Congressional Medal of Honor
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

The highest award for valor that the United States can award is known as the Congressional Medal of Honor.  Since this medal was created in the Civil War, only a few thousand have been awarded to service members, from among the hundreds of thousands who fought in America's wars.  Christopher Heagy will discuss the history of the medal, and some of the unique customs surrounding it as well as some of the special people who received the Congressional Medal of Honor.

 

Friday, 8 May 2015, 6 - 7 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker SSG Frazier Raymond US Army (Ret.), and Maj Jefferson Davis (Ret.)
Subject: Congressional Medal of Honor Recipients in the Vancouver Barracks Post Cemetery
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

As a prelude to the Memorial Day commemorations for 2015, Frazier Raymond, will talk about four soldiers buried in the Vancouver Baracks Post Cemetery; who were singled out for their courage, and received the Congressional Medal of Honor.  These four soldiers were Moses Williams, William Wallace McCammon, Herman Pfisterer, and James Madison Hill.  From service in the Civil War, to the Indian Wars of the American Southwest, to the Spanish American War, these four soldiers showed extreme courage under fire.  

See Flyer For the Event

 

Friday, 12 June 2015, 6 - 7 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker Colonel Bruce Mulkey (Retired)
Subject: The Vancouver Barracks in the 19th Century;
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

The Vancouver Barracks were the 'old frontier' long before the Indian Wars of the late 19th Century. From 1849 until the 1880s, soldiers from the Barracks were active, patrolling the Pacific Northwest, guarding against both Native American and domestic threats. Retired Colonel Bruce Mulkey will speak about some of these events.

 

Friday, 10 July 2015, 6 - 7 PM
Military History Talk
Speaker Major Jefferson Davis (USAR Retired)
Subject: A New Book, Custer's Other Brother-in-Law, Frederic Calhoun
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

Many people have heard of George Armstrong Custer; and know that many of his family and friends, often called the Custer Clique, died with him at the Battle of the Little Bighorn.  Fewer know that his brother-in-law, Lieutenant Frederic Calhoun who fought in the Great Sioux War, survived because he was not at the Little Bighorn.  Later Fred Calhoun was stationed at the Vancouver Barracks, before he retired in 1890.  Decades later, family members donated Fred Calhoun’s personal orders book to the Barracks.  As de facto post historian, Jeff Davis had temporary custody of the book, which he is publishing, in the hopes of shedding light on the lifestyle of soldiers and their families in the American West.  

.

Friday, 14 August 2015, 6 - 7 PM 
Military History Talk Cancelled
Speaker 
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

2014 Military History Talk Schedule is not available, Sorry

 

2013 Military History Talk Schedule:

Thursday, 11 April 2013 8 - 9 PM
Military History Talk
Speaker Major Jefferson Davis (Ret.)
Subject: The Liberation of Concentration Camp Dora Mittelbau.
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

The 104th Division, known as the Timberwolves, called the Pacific Northwest home for many years.  The Division Headquarters was stationed at the Vancouver Barracks from 1946 to 2011.  Before it came to the Northwest, the 104th Division had an illustrious history in World War II.  It is listed as one of the Holocaust Liberation units, after the Timberwolves helped liberate the Concentration Camp Dora Mittelbau, where slave laborers built the dreaded V2 rockets.  This talk includes photographs of the camp, then and now as well as an audio recording from one of the liberators.

See the flyer for more information.

Thursday, 9 May 2013 8 - 9 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker Major Jefferson Davis (Ret.)
Subject: The 14th Infantry Regiment at the Vancouver Barracks. 
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

From the earliest days of the United States military, it was a common practice to move units from one location to another.  This was done for many reasons.  Sometimes units moved to gain expertise in fighting in many different environments.  Others moved as periodic breaks from hostile environments.  The 14th Infantry Regiment was one such unit.  Formed in the early days of the Civil War, it fought t at Antietam, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, Wilderness and Petersburg. Following the Civil War, the 14th Infantry Regiment served in the Pacific Northwest several times.  Its post-Civil War fame came when it led the assault on Manilla in the Spanish American War, and later rotated to the Western Pacific in the early 20th Century.  Many people called the 14th Infantry Regiment, Vancouver's Own.

See the flyer for more information.

Thursday, 13 June 2013 7 - 8 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker Dr. Anita Fisher
Subject: Civil War Medicine 
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

In the early 1860s, medicine had a coming of age in Europe and enlightened locations in the United States.  The first use of modern antiseptic practices, allowing doctors to set compound fractures without amputation dated to the mid-1860s.  Unfortunately, most of these new practices were late in coming to the battlefields of the United States Civil War.  Historian Dr. Anita Fisher will describe some of the techniques and practices of doctors and caregivers in those years and its impact on later medicine in the United States.

See Information Flyer for  the Event

Thursday, 11 July 2013 7 - 8 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker Ms. Alisha Hamel
Subject: Oregon and Washington's Role in World War II 
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

See Information Flyer for  the Event

Alisha Hamel, an experienced historical presenter, will talk about Oregon and Washington's role in WWII. This presentation will tell the story of what happened in Oregon and Washington that is unique from other areas of the United States.  Did you know that the United States was sure that the west coast would be attacked after the attack at Pearl Harbor?  What did Oregon and Washington do?  Did you know that Oregon was attacked?  Come and hear that story.  Also the 41st Infantry Division, an Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana National Guard Infantry Division was activated on September 16, 1940 over a year before the attack at Pearl Harbor.  Where did they go?  Where did they fight?  Where did their first casualty happen?  This unit was considered the "best" National Guard Infantry Division prior to WWII so was one of only four Infantry Division activated so early to fight during WWII.  Come and learn your WWII history.  Alisha will also bring touchable artifacts from actual WWII veterans and maps of WWII free for all attendees.

 

Thursday, 8 August 2013 7 - 8 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker Master Sergeant (Ret.) Jack Giesen
Subject: The North Vancouver Barracks
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau

See Information Flyer for  the Event

Today, most of Vancouver’s citizens think of the Vancouver Barracks as a plot of ground and buildings from Evergreen Boulevard, south to the Columbia River. For nearly a century, the Barracks was much larger, taking in the land from the Columbia River to what is now 4th Plain Boulevard. For much of that time, this northern portion was a field training area. However, during World War II, it was converted into a series of camps and military hospital to support World War II. This talk gives an overview of that forgotten portion of the Vancouver Barracks.

Thursday, 12 September 2013 7 - 8 PM 
Military History Talk
Speaker Colonel Bruce Mulkey (Retired) 
Subject: The 1856 Battle of the Cascades 
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau

See Information Flyer for  the Event

Late in 1855, Indian Agent Andrew J. Bolon (or Bolan) was killed by members of the Yakamas Indian Tribe. A few weeks later, the United States Army led a failed punitive expedition against the Yakamas. Early in 1856, army forces moved from the Vancouver Barracks to Fort Dalles, to begin a spring campaign against the Yakamas and their allies. The army commander, Colonel George Wright did not suspect that the Yakamas and their allies had planned an attack on the US Army post and civilian settlements at the Cascades of the Columbia River.

In March 1856, they struck with complete surprise. In a three day fight, the US Army eventually drove away the attackers. One prominent name in the fight was Lieutenant Philip Sheridan. To learn more about the background behind the attack, and how it unfolded, please come.

 

Thursday, 10 October 2013 7 - 8 PM  
Military History Talk
Speaker  CW3 Dan Sockle (Ret.)
Subject: Unforseen Consequences, Operation Iraqi Freedom 
40 et 8 Chateau at, 40 Et 8 Chateau
7607 NE 26th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98665
360 574-3872

See Information Flyer for  the Event


In March 2003, the United States and its Coalition of allies extended what was then called the International War on Terrorism to Iraq.  Their invasion, which began on 20 March reached Baghdad in a little over a month. The years after the successful invasion of Iraq, the Coalition strategies did not go as planned either inside of Iraq our outside.  In part this was due to a lack of understanding of the peoples of Southwest Asia, their religion and customs. 

2012 Military History Talk Schedule:

12 April 2012
Masonic ties to the U.S. Army in the Early Days of the Vancouver Barracks
By Major Jeff Davis (Ret.)

The Vancouver Barracks were established in 1849 by a diverse group of soldiers. Many of the officers were born in the United States, but came from an already divided North and South. Many of the enlisted men were foreign born. Their common service could either bond them together or divide them. Many found unity in joining fraternal organizations such as freemasonry. Some of the famous (or infamous) alumni include artist Gustav Sohon, Marcus Reno and Henry Weinhard.

See the flyer with a full description of the talk. It may be possible for the VBMA to make this presentation available to other groups upon request.

3 May 2012
Raising the Colors: The Founding of the Vancouver Barracks
By Major Jeff Davis (Ret.) as part of the Clark County Historical Museum’s First Thursday History Talk Program

The United States Army took the axiom, ‘One if by land… two if by sea’, when planning the establishment of the first U.S. Army post in the Oregon Territory, which became known as the Vancouver Barracks. Two separate forces took the journey westward, one overland, the other by sailing ship. The first force landed in 1849, and began construction, waiting for the second to arrive. Which force was it? Come to this talk and find out. Local historian Jefferson Davis will discuss the reasons why the site of the Vancouver Barracks was chosen, and the early years on the post.

See the flyer with a full description of the talk. For more information, contact Jeff Dirctly for more information president@vbma.us It may be possible for the VBMA to make this presentation available to other groups upon request.

10 May 2012
The 1856 Battle of the Columbia River Cascades
By Colonel Bruce Mulkey (Ret.)

Late in 1855, Indian Agent Andrew J. Bolon (or Bolan) was killed by members of the Yakamas Indian Tribe. A few weeks later, the United States Army led a failed punitive expedition against the Yakamas. Early in 1856, army forces moved from the Vancouver Barracks to Fort Dalles, to begin a spring campaign against the Yakamas and their allies. The army commander, Colonel George Wright did not suspect that the Yakamas and their allies had planned an attack on the US Army post and civilian settlements at the Cascades of the Columbia River.

In March 1856, they struck with complete surprise. In a three day fight, the US Army eventually drove away the attackers. One prominent name in the fight was Lieutenant Philip Sheridan.

See the flyer with a full description of the talk. It may be possible for the VBMA to make this presentation available to other groups upon request.

22 June 2012
Failure Without Consequence: The U.S. Army, the U.S. Marine Corps, and Amphibious Preparation During the Interwar Period.
By U.S. Army Captain Richard Ingleby

All too often nations make the mistake of planning for future wars using tactics and equipment from the prior war. When this happens, the price the military of that nation pays can be costly in terms of lives, equipment, and lost battles. In World War II, it was the primary method used to deliver combat troops to many battlefields in the islands of the South Pacific and other locations. In 1914, the U.S. Navy conducted an amphibious assault at the beaches of Veracruz, Mexico, and occupied the city as result of the Tampico Affair. Captain Ingleby who has a BA in History from the University of Utah, and a MA in Military History from Norwich University will examine the planning and preparations that the United States military conducted in the years between World War I and World War II, and how it affect operations once the war began.

See the flyer with a full description of the talk.

25 August 2012
The 104th Division at the Vancouver Barracks
By Major Jeff Davis (Ret.)

In 1945, after the surrender of Japan, the United States and its allies believed that the last world war had been fought. The U.S. War department disbanded its military quickly, too quickly. Many military posts were decommissioned and military units inactivated before the end of 1945. Within a few months, it became apparent that the United States needed a standing army, and large force of Army Reservists and National Guard soldiers. One of the units chosen for reactivation in the Organized Reserves was the 104th Division. In December 1946, it was reactivated, with its headquarters at the Vancouver Barracks, where it remained until 2011. This talk summarizes some of the activities of the division in World War II and the 60 years afterward.

See the flyer with a full description of the talk. It may be possible for the VBMA to make this presentation available to other groups upon request.

13 September 2012
The North Vancouver Barracks
By Master Sergeant Jack Giesen (Ret.)

In 2012, most of Vancouver’s citizens think of the Vancouver Barracks as a plot of ground and buildings from Evergreen Boulevard, south to the Columbia River. For nearly a century, the Barracks was much larger, taking in the land from the Columbia River to what is now 4th Plain Boulevard. For much of that time, this northern portion was a field training area. However, during World War II, it was converted into a series of camps and military hospital to support World War II. This talk gives an overview of that forgotten portion of the Vancouver Barracks.

See the flyer with a full description of the talk. It may be possible for the VBMA to make this presentation available to other groups upon request.

12 October 2012
The Congressional Medal of Honor and the Pacific Northwest
By Mr. Frank Krone

The Congressional Medal of Honor was created by Congress during the Civil War to recognize notable or supreme acts of heroism on the part of United States service members. Since its creation less than 4,000 medals have been awarded. Four soldiers who served at the Barracks and are buried in its Post Cemetery. Other service members who were born in the Pacific Northwest, or served there also received the Congressional Medal of Honor and are buried elsewhere. This talk discusses the Medal, and highlights some of its recipients.

See the flyer with a full description of the talk. It may be possible for the VBMA to make this presentation available to other groups upon request.