April 13, 1918: Ten Thousand march in Duluth for a Liberty Loan Campaign 

On this day in Duluth in 1918, ten thousand Duluthians marched in procession to kick off the city’s third Liberty Loan Campaign, whose goal was to “take bonds to the extent of $5,000,000.” Historian Walter Van Brunt wrote about the event, and the war, four years later: “Some of the slogans written on banners and other writing surfaces, by some of those who marched in that procession indicated the spirit and confidence of the nation. Some of the slogans read: ‘Slip a pill to Kaiser Bill’; ‘The early bird catches the worm; your bonds will help catch the kaiser’; ‘Save, save, save; then dig some more’; ‘Your bonds will bring the boys back home from Europe’s western shore’; ‘Your dollar is the seed of victory; plant it in Liberty bonds and watch it grow’; ‘Ho, Skinny! My dad bought some Liberty bonds. Did yours?’; ‘Dig and we’ll dig with you; slack and you slack alone’; ‘Put up, or shut up’; ‘Five million or bust; Duluth has never failed’; ‘This is the spring drive over here, to help the spring drive over there’; and other equally appealing slogans. Practically every organized society of public character was out in full force in that procession. The next day’s Duluth News Tribune reported that ‘The steady tramp of marching thousands gave a new thrill to the achievement of Duluth. It was more determined enthusiasm than that displayed in the first loyalty demonstration of a year ago. It was the crystallization of an ideal to do.” Duluth and the county in general, did well. The war record is an enviable one, and whether the demand was for man-power or for money the county met it to more than the full. More than nine thousand men were taken into the federal armed forces, and many joined the auxiliary service corps, Red Cross, Y. M. C. A., and other welfare organizations. At least 232 men of St. Louis County gave their lives to the nation.”

This Perry Gallagher Sr. photograph, showing soldiers lining up for Duluth’s third Liberty Loan campaign Parade, appeared in the Duluth News Tribune the day after the parade. (Image: Zenith City Press)