Great Britain's role in World War I received special recognition from The American Legion in 1928. At their annual convention in San Antonio, Legionnaires honored Field Marshal Edmund Henry Hynman Allenby, whose military fame included his leadership of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force in the conquest of Palestine and Syria in 1917 and 1918. Accustomed to a leader who commanded from afar, Allenby's troops appreciated his frequent presence on the front line. In 1919, he was made a field marshal and earned the distinction of viscount.
Biographer Archibald Wavell, a World War II field marshal who once served under Allenby, referred to the "Bloody Bull" as "an intelligent, caring man and a consummate professional soldier." He was credited with commanding the successful joint efforts of planes, infantry and mobile cavalry in the Battle of Megiddo.
As reported by the Montreal Gazette, Allenby told the Legion's convention delegates, "I am a member of the British Legion, and I feel drawn to you by that magnet as well as by the magnet of respect and esteem for your great country, with whom we had the honor to stand side by side in the Great War for the liberty and freedom of the world.
"I think that the great gain to us, at any rate - that is, we English-speaking nations - has been the birth of these two great children of the war: The American Legion and the British Legion. Our ideals are the same, comradeship and patriotism, and those go hand in hand on each side of the Atlantic."
Allenby died in London in 1936, at 75.
For more on Allenby, click here (http://www.firstworldwar.com/bio/allenby.htm).