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Home : News
NEWS | Nov. 1, 2010

CTNG unveils Sgt. Stubby display in the new 1636 room

By Timothy Koster

The Connecticut National Guard unveiled a new Sgt. Stubby display in the National Guard Bureau’s new heritage room in Patton Hall at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Virginia, Nov. 1, 2023.

The room was named the 1636 Room as a tribute to the year the National Guard, America’s first organized military, was founded and all the traditions and heritage that carry on nearly 400 years later.

“The 1636 Room is a tribute to that tradition, a commemoration of a force unlike any other—one that continues to have an impact as 20% of the Joint Force and continues to shape the course of history,” said Gen. Daniel Hokanson, chief of the National Guard Bureau, during the ceremony unveiling the exhibit Nov. 1.
“When I travel across the 54, I always ask to see their heritage rooms,” said Hokanson. “A lot of them are pretty amazing and what they do, is they capture the history of that unit and the people and the community that created that unit and its history. [What] makes this one unique is we try to capture that for the 54 and really our historical team has done incredible work to look at our history from the National Guard going back to the beginning.”

The National Guards of each of the 54 states and territories were asked to submit a display or artifact that best represents that state’s military history. Connecticut has a storied history that dates back to before the Revolutionary War and boasts many crowning achievements that would be valuable additions to the 1636 room, but Sgt. Stubby is probably the most famous and a favorite among Connecticut National Guard troops.

The display was designed and built by a team of Connecticut National Guardsmen, including: Lt. Col. Steve Landry, Sgt. 1st Class Daniel Damon, Staff Sgt. Benjamin Shadlich, Sgt. Blake Dominello, and Sgt. Ricardo Alavezeveros.

Sergeant Stubby was a Boston Terrier who wandered onto the campus of Yale University in 1917 as members of the 1-102nd Infantry Regiment mustered and prepared to deploy to Europe during World War I. There, a young Corporal named James Conroy befriended the pup and smuggled him onto the boat the troops were using to sail to France.

Stubby served alongside the 102nd for 18 months and participated in more than 17 battles over four different offensives, including the United States’ first major engagement at the Battle of Seicheprey, France. In that battle, he was injured and sent to the rear where he recovered and helped improve the morale of wounded Soldiers.

When he returned the front line, he was provided a specially designed gas mask to protect him from the German military’s mustard gas attacks. Because of his acute hearing and sense of smell, Stubby became a vital asset to the Connecticut Guard Soldiers as he could warn them of impending gas and mortar attacks before the humans were aware of the threats. He earned the rank of sergeant when he single-handedly (pawedly?) captured a German spy in the Argonne.

Stubby was not only beloved by the men of the 102nd. After the U.S. forces retook Château-Thierry, a commune in the department of the Aisne, province of Champagne, France, the women of the town made him a chamois with all his patches and medals sewn on. By the end of the war, Stubby had been injured three times from either mustard gas or grenade shrapnel, but he and Cpl. Conroy returned home at the end of the war.

After the war, Stubby was a celebrity. He met Presidents Woodrow Wilson, Calvin Coolidge, and Warren G. Harding and led and marched in parades around the country. He was awarded the Humane Education Society’s gold medal from Gen. of the Armies John Pershing and became Georgetown University’s mascot and performed shows at halftime.

Stubby passed away peacefully in his sleep in 1926. His body was preserved through taxidermy and is currently on display at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in its Price of Freedom: Americans at War exhibit.