Monday, March 24, 2014

Carmine "Charlie" Lanzillotto's WWI Service Record

I've recently reviewed the WWI Service Records of three of my four great-grandfathers, John Joseph O'Hara, Joseph Eugene Mulcahy, and Domenico Gatto. All three served during the war, but none of them was sent overseas. Only one of my great-grandfathers, Carmine "Charlie" Lanzillotto, actually served in Europe.

Lanzillotta, Lanzilotto, World War I
WWI Service Record of Carmine Lanzillotta, NYS Archives
He was born 16 July 1894, in what's recorded here as "Bitelo," Italy. (It was actually Bitetto, outside of Bari, in Italy). When he was inducted, he was living at 281 E. 155th St. in northern Manhattan. This was the same address where he had been living when he registered for the draft in 1917, as well as where he was living when he naturalized on 20 October 1919, which means that he came back to the same building after the war.

Carmine Lanzillotto fought in the Battle of the Argonne Forest, officially known as the Meuse-Argonne Offensive; it's both the only engagement listed here, and the only battle my grandmother had ever heard him speak of. He was inducted on 25 June 1918 and was overseas by 3 August 1918. The battle lasted from 26 September 1918 until 11 November 1918, the date of the Armistice that ended the war. Charlie, though, remained overseas until the following September, and was discharged on 6 October 1919.

I'm not sure of all of the abbreviations used in the section "Organizations served in," but "MP" shows up a lot, which accords with the image below, showing Charlie Lanzillotto in his uniform and wearing an "MP" band on his arm. 

Lanzillotta, Lanzilotto, world war I, military police
Carmine Lanzillotto


Mary Ann Miale said...

Thanks Katie! Great Job!
Mary Ann Miale

Mary Ann Miale said...

Great Job Katie! Thank You!

Laura O'Hara said...

You really reveal a lot about our ancestors. I love hearing the stories.

Ralph Poore said...

The poor typing on the record doesn't help. The first unit is the Headquarters of the 52nd Pioneer Infantry. A history of that unit is online at That is the unit your great grandfather would have been with during the battle. The other units as you noted are Military Police. It might be worth your time to search Stars and Stripes for that time period. You can search on your ancestor's name and units at

annie lanzillotto said...

thank you Katie for keeping our story alive

Anthony N Lanzillotta said...

Carmine Lanzillotta is my grandfather Nicola Lanzillotta's brother and lived with him @ 281 e 155 in the Bronx ,now the Morris. Houses,,my father carmine Lanzillotta is named after him,,my father would refer to him as zii carmanid my grand father did not serve in wwI because he had 3kids at the time and in 1922 my Gand father Nicola went back to bitetto to help our great grand father Giuseppe work their farm ,,,and the correct spelling if the last name end with an A