226 THE FORT SHERIDAN ASSOCIATION
The idea of the parade had strongly appealed to citizens of foreign birth, so that Polish, Servian and other societies were active in organizing marchers and in arranging for the representation of their citizens along the parade route.
The National Army Day Committee, v^ith the co-operation of the mem- bers of the exemption boards for the registration divisions of the city, dis- tributed 10,000 posters prepared to command the attention of the registered men, and mailed directly to those in the first quota to be called, 50,000 invi- tations.
The officers of the parade were: Grand Marshal, Colonel W. J. Nichol- son; Assistant to Grand Marshal, Major Raymond Sheldon; Chief of Staff, Captain E. R. W. McCabe; Aids, Captain Benson, Captain Wharton Clay, executive secretary Military Training Camps Association.
After the event, seven trains carried the members of the R. O. T. C. to the Stock Yards, where luncheon was served to all troops and v^here, in the pavilion, the men w^ere received and addressed by inembers of the Russian commission and others.
The "Reveille" of Friday following the parade gives an interesting description:
Student officers at R. O. T. C. still feel the thrill of Chicago's wel- come to the new National Army and its leaders.
Crow^ds that made the loop district a seething mass of humanity gathered to honor the men who w^ill fight for liberty on the battlefields of France w^ill long be remembered by the men at Fort Sheridan.
The fighting men were on parade. With seven bands playing the soulful battle hymns of all the allied nations, soldiers, sailors and poten- tial fighters passed before tens of thousands of spectators who were there to pay them worship.
It w^as National Army day, and the men who have or will be called to the colors w^ere the guests of honor. Thousands of men who will serve in the new^ army w^ere in line. Every one of them carried an American flag. A more stirring spectacle hardly could be imagined. They looked like a giant wave of red, white and blue to a spectator from a skyscraper w^indow^.
Representatives of every military establishment in Chicago and Cook County took part in the parade. Four thousand members of the Reserve Officers' Training Camp at Fort Sheridan, 6,000 National Guardsmen, the jackies w^ith their great band and the National Army men, with policemen and firemen, composed the make-up. The guards- men lined the sides of the streets until the registered men had passed, then fell in and covered the complete line of march.
Twenty-tw^o thousand seven hundred soldiers, sailors and civilians marched in the parade. It took one hour and tw^enty-five minutes for the parade to pass the reviewing stand, and three-quarters of an hour for the National Army men alone.
The marchers stood as follow^s in numerical strength: National Army men, 10,000; student officers, 4,100; National Guardsmen, 6,000; aliens and foreign-born citizens, 2,000; policemen, 300; firemen, 300.