The United States officially entered into World War I on April 6, 1917. At that time enrolled members of the Osage Tribe were not considered citizens of the United States; therefore, they were not subject to the Selective Service for the Armed Forces. However, that did not stop many Osages from volunteering for military service. At the deterrence of Osage Agent, J. George Wright, 153 Osage men enlisted and proudly served in the United States armed forces.
Sadly not all Osages that went to Europe came back. Original allottee Charles Donovan was killed in action on October 13, 1918, just a few weeks short of the armistice that unofficially ended the war. Donovan was the only Osage casualty of World War I. But Charles Donovan’s sacrifice, along with the sacrifices of all the Osage men who bravely fought, are still celebrated today by their Osage people.