Biography of John Joseph Pershing


Pershing, John Joseph. American general and commander-in-chief of the American military forces sent to France, 1917-18. Was born in Linn County, MO, 1860. Pershing graduated at the state normal school at Kirksville, 1880, and at the United States military academy at West Point, 1886. He served as lieutenant of cavalry in the Apache and Sioux campaigns, was in Cuba in 1898, and in the Philippine Islands, 1899-1903, being made captain in 1901 and brigadier-general in 1906. In 1905 Pershing was military attaché with Kuroki's army in Manchuria in the Russo-Japanese War. For services in command of the troops sent into Mexico in pursuit of Villa in 1916, he was made major-general. In March, 1918, General Pershing placed the entire American army in France at the command of General Foch. In June, portions of Pershing's forces won the battles of Chateau Thiery and Belleau Wood, and in July turned the Germans back near Soisons. His armies captured the St. Mihiel salient, September 13, and in October fought the great battles of the Argonne and the Meuse, victoriously reaching Sedan, November 7. Pershing was appointed chief of staff, United States Army, 1921.