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Trench Commander: The Bachus Family in WW I - Home Page


My grandfather briefly served as a company commander in the trenches of France. And although my grandfather was given a battlefield commission by Gen. Pershing during a tour of the front lines, millions of American and Allied families paid a much higher price for the freedoms we now enjoy. This blog isn’t about how important a role my family played in the Great War effort ... or even about the sacrifices they made to help bring about the end of World War I.

While my ancestors enjoyed a colorful and occasionally dangerous history of serving in nearly every branch of the United States Armed Forces for four generations, this blog isn’t really about us. Rather, this blog is dedicated to putting a human face on a nearly forgotten and incompletely chronicled chapter of our country’s struggle against tyranny and for our seat at the table of the world’s great nations.

Over the next 24 months, Trench Commander: The Bachus Family in WW I promises to provide an intimate and detailed look into the lives of my family before, during, and slightly after WW I.

One hundred years before the start of this blog, my grandfather, Joseph L. Bachus, was already a seasoned veteran and well versed in military life, even though the United States was not yet at war and only ranked 17th in the size of its armed forces compared to the rest of the world. Back home, my grandmother and aunt were already getting a taste for life on the Homefront, as they held down the fort back in Michigan.lina-betty

Over the course of this story, you will discover how one family’s fate swept its members from the Northwoods logging boom to the decks of the aging USS Constellation ... from the last Great Lakes naval vessel to a Marine Corp garrison in Cuba ... from the Michigan National Guard to the Pancho Villa Punitive Expedition into Mexico ... from the docks of Hoboken, New Jersey to the front-line trenches of Alsace-Lorraine, and beyond.

It is my family’s hope that this story will inspire you and your family to uncover more pieces of the American historical puzzle that is World War One.

We invite you to follow our family’s past right here on the Trench Commander blog. And, if you enjoy historical fiction based on the lives explored here, then please sign up for a FREE NOVEL EXCERPT of Into No Man’s Land. In my debut novel, I take readers further into the Great War and deeper into the hearts of American doughboys than the historical record allows. Just use the sign up box on the left of this page, and I'll send you the exciting battlefield Prologue to the novel at no cost or obligation to you.