The War Years
  • World War I  

The first local draft board on Staten Island opened on May 25, 1917.  Richmond County sent more men to the war effort per capita than any other county in the United States. Of the 5,000 Islanders who served, 141 were killed. 

The names of 369 veterans are memorialized on the Pleasant Plains War Memorial Monument, “Erected by Citizens of the Fifth Ward in honor of the soldiers and sailors who served their country in the World War of 1914-1918.”

The original Almer G. Russell Recreation Pavilion, located at the end of Hylan Blvd in Tottenville, was formally opened in 1935 to honor Russell, a Tottenville soldier killed in action in France in 1918.  After falling into ruins from years of neglect, the Russell Pavilion was razed in the 1960s.  Finally rebuilt in 2002, the structure was rededicated to the memory of Russell in 2008.  This structure was also removed due to its poor construction.   The Russell Pavilion is expected to be rebuilt in 2017.  Six local men lost their lives during the Great War:

Private Almer G. Russell
Lieutenant Walton U. Beauvais
Private Thomas Cavallo
Private Peter L. Massey
Clarence R. Klinger
Sergeant John W. O'Meara, Jr.