World War I campaign medal
Tela Burt earned this medal for his service in France during World War I. The Allied countries are listed on the back of the medal.
Burt was in his late 20s when he enlisted. As an African American man, he was assigned to a segregated unit; black men and white men did not serve in regiments together. Burt served with the 809th Pioneer Infantry, and like most other black regiments, they were assigned to manual labor rather than to combat.