Search

Captain Horatio Winslow: Co. 'I', 339th Infantry

Updated: Apr 5


(Cpt. Horatio Winslow - Detroit Free Press, 1919)


Horatio Winslow was born May 5, 1882 in Madison, WI, his parents, Agnes and Judge John B. Winslow. Horatio’s father, the Chief Justice of Wisconsin’s Supreme Court was a powerful man. He was a major player in Wisconsin’s Democratic party, as well as a national Progressive-pushing force, aggressive enough that he had caught President Theodore Roosevelt’s attention to the point Winslow was on TR’s short list for Supreme Court nominee. With a high-ranking judge for a father, this meant Horatio and his brother and four sisters grew up in a mansion in Madison’s posh Langdon Street district. Horatio attended the elite private institute, The Racine Academy, and went on to earn his B. A. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1904. Horatio though, did not follow in his father’s footsteps. Instead he found great joy in putting words on paper. The young Winslow became a member of Phi Delta Theta, and was a prolific writer for the Wisconsin Alumni Magazine.[1]

Winslow’s career choice—becoming a writer—did not meet his father’s aspirations for his son, but the Judge supported him when the young writer ventured away to the publishing capitol, New York City. Horatio acquired an apartment in Brooklyn and became the copy editor for the activist magazine, The Masses, and in 1909 published his first book, Rhymes and Meters: A Practical Guide for Versifiers.[2] And at this time he met a rambunctious young divorcee who had published enough to simply refer to herself by her pen name—Jane Burr—whose given name was Rosalind Guggenheim. The two married in 1911.

Winslow published a number of articles in Munsey’s, a publication with a circulation of as many as 700,000 monthly subscribers, and The Cavalier, which specialized in an entire story per publication, as well as sophisticated colorized covers.These publications, front runners in the new world of pulp magazines, sold for ten cents a copy, and destroyed the old-school idea that magazine publications must be stolid, conservative, and printed on fine paper. These pulp magazines often had racy covers and lascivious illustrations, along with progressive ideas among their writings, and were, “attacked for [their] half-dressed women and undressed statues.” Meanwhile, Jane Burr also continued writing, publishing articles on, “marriage, women’s rights, birth control, modern dress, and the changing attitudes of the day.”[3]

The couple though, besides supporting themselves with writings advocating the liberal and progressive notions of the time, also lived what they promoted; they became known as ‘movers and shakers’ in the “Greenwich Village group of artists, writers, and radicals.”[4] A few years later, Winslow left his editing position at The Masses and focused entirely on writing articles and books. Sadly, their marriage crumbled and in 1917 the two separated. Thus, when America entered the Great War, Horatio Winslow chose to turn his back on the literary world; he went into the military.

Winslow applied to become an officer, passed the examination and was sent to Ft. Sheridan, IL for Officer’s Candidate School. He was commissioned Captain upon completion of the course, and in early 1918 was sent to Camp Custer, where he eventually was slotted as a company commander (Co. I) in the 339th Infantry, and from there, he and his regiment headed to Russia.

Captain Winslow's company was sent to Obozerskaya, and along with the other units in the Second Battalion battled the Bolsheviks in this region until being pulled out in May 1919. Winslow's formation served with honor during that time, though their reputation was marred by an ill-named 'mutiny', occurring on March 30, 1919. The company was on 'R-and-R' in Archangel, Winslow's riflemen enjoying the diversions that Russian city offered. However, a Bolo attack west of Obozerskaya forced the Allied command to scramble for combat soldiers. The first unit sent to the battle front, Company 'E', melted away, forcing the high command to seek more help, and the call went to Company 'I'. Winslow's men were unhappy to have their R-and-R shortened, and arguing that someone else should be sent. One of Winslow's men growled, We felt imposed upon, and felt that some of those other companies that had just been on guard duty around Archangel and Bakharitza could replace them.”[5]

Captain Winslow's riflemen balked at loading up for the trip to Obozerskaya and this strike-appearing action quicky accelerated into a situation that began to look like a mutiny. Horatio Winslow contacted Col. George Stewart, who gathered the entire company together and in the next hour, sorted the situation out. The men loaded their gear and were transported to Obozerskaya, where they immediately were thrown into the fight, and they did themselves proud. Later, Brig. Gen. Wilds Richardson, who had come to Russia to take over the command of the American soldiers there, would stated, "the alleged mutiny was nothing as serious as had been reported."[6]

Captain Winslow was discharged from the Army in July 1919, and though still married to Jane Burr who lived in New York, he returned to his parents' home in Madison, WI. Winslow secured a teaching position in Madison and resumed his writing. He published a number of articles, as well as traveling back to Europe. There he met his future wife, a French woman named Madeline, who was twenty years younger than he. Horatio divorced Jane Burr in 1925, and a year later, married Madeline. The couple had two children, Jacqueline and John.

The Winslow family moved to San Diego in the late 1920's, and then, in 1931, to Pasadena, CA, where Horatio worked full time writing. He would publish over fifty articles in the Saturday Evening Post during the next twenty years, as well as a detective novel, Into Thin Air. Winslow published his last short fiction story in 1955, entitled, "God and the Apes." [7] He continued writing, still be listed as an 'author' in the Pasadena city directory as late as 1970. Winslow died in 1972 and is buried in Pasadena, CA.

--------------------------------------------

[1] The University of Wisconsin Alumni Directory, 1849-1911,1912. [2] Winslow, Horatio, Rhymes and Meters: A Practical Guide for Versifiers, 1909. [3] “Jane Burr (1882-1957),” www.laborarts.org. [4] “Jane Burr (1882-1957),” www.laborarts.org.

[5] Siplon, James, “Interview," 7 Jun 1977.

[6] Scales, Howard, “Alleged Mutiny of Company I, 339th Infantry,” Washington, D.C., 25 June 1920.

[7] "Horatio G. Winslow." www.gadective.pbworks.com

49 views0 comments