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General John Pershing decorates Lt. Samuel Woodfill of the 60th Infantry (New York). Lt. Woodfill killed fifteen Germans with a pick-axe, receiving only a slight wound himself., February 9, 1919
Vintage ferrotyped gelatin silver print on paper

Technique: Photography
Credit Line: Restricted gift of Michael Mattis, Judy Hochberg, Fernando Barnuevo and Gloria Ybarra
Accession Number: P2020.6.486

Purchased by the Benton Museum of Art at Pomona College on August 12, 2020 from Edwynn Houk Gallery, New York.

He Killed 15 Germans With A Pick Axe: General John Pershing decorates Samuel Woodfill of the 60th Infantry (New York). Lieutenant Woodfill has the remarkable record of having killed fifteen Germans with a pick-axe, receiving only a slight wound himself.

Samuel Woodfill (1883-1951) was a Major in the United States Army. He was a veteran of the Philippine–American War, World War I, and World War II. Woodfill was one of the most celebrated American soldiers of the early 20th century. General John Pershing called Woodfill the most outstanding soldier in World War I. During an offensive in October 1918, he single-handedly neutralized three German machine gun emplacements while suffering under the effect of mustard gas, and he was able to successfully lead his men safely back to the American lines without casualties. Woodfill was considered to be one of America's most decorated soldiers in World War I. He received the Medal of Honor (which General Pershing presented on February 9, 1919), the French Légion d'honneur in the degree of Chevalier, the French Croix de Guerre with bronze palm, the Montenegrin Order of Prince Danilo I in the degree of Knight and the Italian Croce al Merito di Guerra, among other awards.

Credited in plate with typeset credit and title on label affixed to verso.

Ferrotyped prints are processed in such a way that they are shiny. The print has a sensitive surface, usually thinner, because it was put through a press while still wet.

Ferrotyped prints have a sensitive surface, usually shiny and thinner, because they are put through a press while still wet. Ferrotyping makes the surface of the photograph smoother. Light does not scatter as much on a smoother surface, so this increases contrast. That makes ferrotyped images better for press photography.

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