March 20, 1898 (Newark, NJ) – April 20, 1918; 20 years old
Last local address: 42 South Main Street, South Norwalk
Entered the service June 21, 1917
Serial number 64387
Unit: 26th Division, 102nd Infantry, Company D
Born to unknown father from New Jersey and Cornelia Ernst Cameron then Devine (1868-?). No siblings.
Killed In Action during the Battle of Seicheprey.
From unknown Norwalk newspaper
The following clipping from the Newark, N.J. Evening News gives some additional details about the death of Charles R. Davenport who was killed in action on April 20th:
Within an hour after she had read his name in the casualty list printed last night in the News, Mrs. Frank Devine of 63 Summit Street, received a telegram from the War Department in Washington stating that her son Charles R. Davenport, had been killed in action in France on April 20.
At first, friends of the boy did not realize that it was he who had been in the list as South Norwalk, Connecticut. Then they remembered that he had enlisted from that town last June. He had been employed there for more than a year.
Davenport was born in Newark March 20, 1899. He was educated in the public schools, graduating from the Washington Street School. He attended the Sixth Presbyterian Church when he lived in Newark.
In the summer of 1916, Davenport went to South Norwalk and took a position in the Norwalk Iron Works. He worked there until June 23 of last year, when he enlisted in the Connecticut Blues, a New Haven regiment. He sailed for France in September.
Mrs. Devine received a letter from her son Tuesday. He wrote that he was in the best of health and was enjoying soldier life immensely. The letter arrived almost two weeks after he had met his death.
Besides his mother, Davenport is survived by a brother, Ormond Davenport, of Manayunk, Pennsylvania who served four years in the marines prior to the war. Mrs. Devine is unable to state whether he is in the service at the present time.
No details of the manner in which Davenport met his death have been received by his mother.
While employed in this city Private Davenport was known as C. Reginald Davenport. His mother’s name before her marriage was Cornelia Lickett, and she was a former resident of this city.
The picture of Private Davenport given in this article was taken when he was in this city on a furlough visiting with some friends.
From worldwar1centennial.org On April 20th, 1918, in Seicheprey, France, near the St. Mihiel Salient, American soldiers engaged in their first significant infantry battle of World War I. On the front lines, the St. Mihiel-Metz corridor was seen by General Pershing as the entrance to Imperial Germany. He considered it to be a key operating and training area for his growing force of soldiers. In 1918, Pershing started sending a number of his divisions to the St. Mihiel Salient for combat exposure, and in situ training. This front-line training involved units from the 26th Division, known at the “Yankee Division”. The battle of Seicheprey occurred on the southern side of the St. Mihiel salient. There, three companies of the Yankee Division’s 102nd Regiment occupied a trench, known as the Sibille trench. On April 20th, the German Army attacked from the northeast, north, and northwest, arriving at the town simultaneously in three different groups. This attack outmaneuvered the Americans, and inflicted a number of American battle casualties, which ranged between 400 and 500 people wounded & killed. (includes Private Davenport).
From The Norwalk Hour May 17, 1919
A certificate of honorable mention has been received by Mrs. Frank Devine of 176 Lafayette Street, Newark, New Jersey from the War Department, in commemoration of the death of her son Charles R. Davenport, killed in action in Seicheprey, France on April 20, 1918. Young Davenport was a private in Company D, 102nd Infantry, a Connecticut National Guard regiment, and enlisted in Norwalk, Connecticut on June 223, 1917, going overseas in September of that year. In recognition of his death, the Newark city commission last July changed the name of Chester Avenue West, from the Morris canal to the city line, to Davenport Avenue. Davenport was born and educated in Newark, graduating from the Washington Street School. In the summer of 1916 he went to South Norwalk to work for the Norwalk Iron Works company. The certificate received by Mrs. Devine was signed by Colonel E.F. Potis, commanding the 102nd Infantry.
Ridge Street in Norwalk renamed Davenport Street in 1921 in Private Davenport’s honor
Private Davenport is buried at St. Mihiel American Cemetery Thiaucourt, France; Plot B, Row 25, Grave 15.