University of Arizona

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Official Report of the Chief of the United States Army Ambulance Service with the French Army, to the Surgeon General of the Army

The United States Army Ambulance Service (USAAS) was created by presidential order on May 18, 1917 for the duration of the "existing emergency." It incorporated the civilian volunteer units already in France: the American Field Service and the American Red Cross Ambulance Service. Col. Percy L. Jones was the commanding officer and Lt. Col. William McFarland was the executive officer. An included copy of the demobilization orders is dated Jan. 24, 1919.

This original typescript in the collection relates the history of the Ambulance Service with the French Army on the Western Front during WWI. A signed introduction by Col. Jones, in Paris on April 15, 1919, stated that the report is in compliance with instructions given by the Surgeon General on November 27, 1918. Some of the chapters discuss organization, instruction, equipment, evacuation, morale activities, demobilization, and their role in the Battle of the Argonne in 1918.  Diagrams illustrate the relationship of the USAAS with the French Army, and maps show zones for the movement of supplies and the wounded. Brief historical summaries of the individual units list statistics such as the American places of origin, many of which were universities; officers' names; fronts and campaigns served on; names and causes of ambulance personnel taken ill, injured, or killed; and commendations. A full-plate photograph depicts a new superior French-built ambulance known as the "American Field Service Type." A gilded leather name-plate inside the front cover credits both Col. Jones and Lt. Col. McFarland for the report.