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Canteen workers at Union station, St. Paul

Canteen workers at Union station, St. Paul

Red Cross workers, mainly women, operated canteens for Allied soldiers in the United States and France. Canteens offered food, drinks and other items (such as cigarettes, magazines, and postcards). Some canteen workers provided these free items to soldiers at train stations, as they left for the war or arrived home. This photograph was taken in 1917 at Union Depot in St. Paul.

The Red Cross estimates that during the war, 55,000 workers operated 700 canteens in the United States, and 130 canteens in France served more than 15 million Allied soldiers. 

Date: 
1917
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