LDL to Offer Program Commemorating Anniversary of U.S. involvement into World War I

The U.S. entered World War I on April 6, 1917, and the “Hello Girls” were formed later that year when General Pershing insisted he needed bilingual phone operators near the front lines.

One hundred years later on Thursday, April 6th at the Loutit District Library (LDL), storyteller Lois Sprengnether Keel portrays Oleda Joure, a Marine City, Michigan teenager who received special permission to enlist. Only after the war did the Girls learn that the Army considered them contractors instead of combatants, which meant they could not receive any veteran’s benefits.

President Carter finally recognized their contributions in 1978 during the fiftieth anniversary of the war’s end. Learn about Oleda and this group of heroic women of southeastern Michigan, including their only death abroad, in a program featuring music and other artifacts of the time.

This program runs from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. in Program Room A. For more information, visit or call 616-842-5560, ext. 214.