Saturday, February 22, 2014

North Carolina's Youngest Soldier in WW I Enlisted at 14

“Youngest Soldier” from the Feb. 6, 1919 issue of The Watauga Democrat, Boone

Concord can boast, perhaps, of the youngest soldier sent overseas in the recent conflict, in the person of Master Plato Miller, son of Mr. and Mrs. B.N.H. Miller.

When war was declared on Germany, young Miller, then only 14 years of age, was ready, anxious and wanting to go, but on account of his age he did not get into the service for several months. However, not to be foiled in his attempt to help lick the Germans, he made one effort after another to enter the service, only to be told that he was too young, and also that his weight was against him.

Finally one day he left home and enlisted, having attained the proper weight, and being very much overgrown for his age, he was accepted and sent to a training camp. After spending several weeks in training he was sent overseas and was with Gen. Pershing’s forces doing his “bit” before he was 15, having celebrated his 15th birthday in France.

Cabarrus County lays claim to the youngest soldier in the service.

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