Angelo State University’s History Department launches a new three-year lecture series commemorating the centennial of World War I, also known as the Great War, this Thursday, Sept. 17, in the Houston Harte University Center, 1910 Rosemont Drive.

Dr. John Klingemann, chair of ASU’s History Department, will present “Texans in the Great War, the 36th Infantry Division” at 7 p.m. in the University Center’s C.J. Davidson Conference Center. The lecture is free and open to the public.

The 36th Infantry Division, organized in 1917, was composed of 18,000 Texas National Guard officers and men, with an additional 2,500 from Oklahoma. Known as the Texas Division, the unit was sent to Europe in July 1918 and was part of the final Allied offensive of the war. The unit suffered 2,584 casualties.

A member of the History Department since 2007, Klingemann was named chair in 2014 and is also the interim chair of the Department of Communication and Mass Media. He was named a faculty fellow of the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education/Ford Foundation in 2013 and was awarded a Tinker Fellowship for Graduate Research in Latin America in 2005 and a Fulbright Garcia-Robles Fellowship to Mexico in 2006. The Terlingua native earned a doctorate in history at the University of Arizona after earning a master’s in history and a bachelor’s in Spanish at Sul Ross State University.

ASU’s the Great War Centennial Commemoration Lecture Series is funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and co-organized by Dr. Christine Lamberson and Dr. Kanisorn Wongsrichanalai of ASU’s history faculty.

“World War I is the real birth of the 20th century,” Wongsrichanalai said. “It’s a great opportunity to highlight for the public and for the students an area of history that is not often brought up in discussions of American history.”

The series will continue Tuesday, Oct. 27, with a presentation by Dr. Jim Hindman, former ASU president and history faculty, on “Freedom of the Seas: German U-Boat Warfare, the Lusitania, and America’s Entry into the Great War.”

On Monday, Nov. 16, Dr. David Silbey of Cornell University will present “Fighting the Great War: Nations and Cultures in the Mud of Combat.”

More information on the lecture series is available online at angelo.edu/dept/history/great-war.