(Wednesday, December 12, 1917, 11:15 p.m. CET; during World War I) — A train carrying at least 1,000 French troops on their way home for leave from the Italian front derailed tonight while descending a steep hill in Modane, France, killing at least 700 troops in France’s greatest rail disaster.
(Tuesday, September 4, 1917, late evening CEST; on the Western Front during World War I) – The American Expeditionary Forces in France suffered their first fatalities today during the Great War when a German plane attacked a British-run base hospital near Dannes-Camiers in Pas-de-Calais, France.
Lt. W.T. Fitzsimmons was killed along with Pvt. Oscar Tugo, Pvt. Rudolph Rubino and Pvt. Leslie Woods.
(Friday, August 10, 1917, early afternoon; during World War I) — Herbert Hoover was named formally as the first director of the U.S. Food Administrationtoday by President Woodrow Wilson, under authority invested in him by Congress, and immediately served notice on speculators and profiteers that the time of reckoning had come for those who would not cooperate in the efforts of the government to obtain lower prices for the consumer and help the allies of America in the war against Germany.