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"Farmers Help the Belgians"
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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In August, 1914, Germany invaded Belgium in the opening moves of World War I. Belgium had been neutral, but its flat fields lay between Germany and its enemy, France. Belgium was almost entirely occupied save a small area in its northwest corner. From the first, Germany's occupation was portrayed by British propaganda as unusually brutal, and great sympathy was raised for the Belgians. Americans responded generously. In Deerfield, Massachusetts, two local ministers organized a benefit that collected $50, 7 cases of clothing, a barrel of apples, and 10 bags of potatoes and onions. Three years later, the United States was drawn into the fighting.
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