Leading Them Back Home for Christmas
FES Title: Coming Home for Christmas French Refugees. Am. Infantry
Alternate Titles: Bringing Them Back Home for Christmas
Date: 09/17/1918
Size: 30″H x 50″W
Medium: oil-on-Smooth-canvas
Type: illustration
Published: “Souvenir Pictures of the Great War.” The Ladies Home Journal, December 1918: 19.
caption: Leading them back home for Christmas. After weary months of waiting these innocent victims of the Huns lust for destruction are to-day being led back over the shell-torn roads, by their tender-hearted defenders in khaki, to spots that, no matter how, desolate and ravaged, still are “home.” The bond of sympathy thus created is one that can never break, linking as it does the heart of French childhood with the great heart of America.

Horne, Charles F. The Story of the American People, Vol. 2, The National Period. New York: U.S. History Publishing Co., 1926: facing 420.
caption: Leading the children home for Christmas

Smith, Louise Schoonover. “The Art of Frank E. Schoonover.” Illustration, July 2003: 36.
Caption: “Leading the Children Home,” 1918. Oil on canvas, 30″ x 50″. Daybook #897. Private collection.

Inscription: ll: Frank E. Schoonover / – ’18
Annotations: en verso on label: From F.E. Schooonover “Bringing them home for Christmas” / 1616 Rodney St / Wilmington, Del. / September 18, 1918. / #897
Exhibitions: 1919 WSFA
Comments: TP 8/7/02; form 10/25/02; index; edit
Commentary: Schoonover depicts American soldiers leading refugees home through a devastated city as locals look on. Each vignette within the painting tells an aspect of the story. For further commentary, see #886.
This image was made into a plywood interlocking jigsaw puzzle by Parker Brothers, Salem, Massachusetts in 1930. (www.old puzzles.com)

Provenance: Sold by the artist to William C. Blatz (February 15, 1919); Annie Stern, Wilmington, Delaware; private collection