Falls, DeWitt Clinton, 1864-1937

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1864 - 1937

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Author, artist, and military general DeWitt Clinton Falls (1864-1937) was an authority on military heraldry and a designer of military insignia.

Author, artist, and military general DeWitt Clinton Falls (1864-1937) was an authority on military heraldry and a designer of military insignia. Born in New York City, he enlisted in Company K of the Seventh Infantry Regiment, New York National Guard, becoming corporal (1889), major (1911), and colonel (1917). He would eventually retire as a brigadier general in 1928. For most of the first three decades of the twentieth century he was stationed in Europe observing various military conflicts, including World War I, when he was in Belgium and England. After the Spanish-American War he was given an assignment to determine the appropriate uniforms for service in tropical climates. He would eventually assemble a large collection of military uniforms, and his paintings, drawings, and photographs on the subject were donated to the New York Public Library in 1938. Falls published numerous works, including children’s books, on a variety of topics. They include An A.B.C of Golf (1898), The Mishaps of an Automobilist (1902), Army and Navy Information: Uniforms, Organizations, Arms, and Equipment of the Warring Powers (1917), Washington in War Times (1919), and History of the Seventh Regiment, 1889-1922 (1923?). Falls became a fellow of the American Numismatic Society in 1923 and served on its Committee on Decorations, Insignia, and War Medals and on its governing council from that year until his death. (Note: the alternate form of his name, De Witt Clinton Falls, is often used.)

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