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Alonzo Foringer

Alonzo Foringer

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Alonzo Foringer was born on 1st February 1878 in Pennsylvania. He studied in Pittsburgh and New York. He became an illustrator and during the First World War designed the popular poster for the Red Cross, The Greatest Mother in the World.

Foringer died on 9th December 1948.

Alonzo Foringer - History

The Engravings of Alonzo Foringer

Alonzo Foringer (1878-1948) created a number of wonderful engravings for the American Banknote Company in the early part of the 1900's. These were used as the vignettes on stock & bond certificates, banknotes and stamps. The works, of which Copyright was and still is held by ABN, were unsigned. Our attribution of these images to Mr. Foringer is therefore not 100% positive. But his unique style of human representation, and especially his masterful rendering of drapery, makes for a reasonably good guess. Here are some of our favorites.

Click on a picture to see the full-scale image. Click on the browser's "back" button to return to this page.

All images on this page are Copyright American Banknote Co. Please respect their rights to the images, and do not download them for any commercial purpose. These images are intended for artistic appreciation only, and as a personal tribute to Alonzo Foringer.

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Photo, Print, Drawing The greatest mother in the world / A. E. Foringer.

The Library of Congress does not own rights to material in its collections. Therefore, it does not license or charge permission fees for use of such material and cannot grant or deny permission to publish or otherwise distribute the material.

Ultimately, it is the researcher's obligation to assess copyright or other use restrictions and obtain permission from third parties when necessary before publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the Library's collections.

For information about reproducing, publishing, and citing material from this collection, as well as access to the original items, see: World War I Posters - Rights and Restrictions Information

  • Rights Advisory: No known restrictions on reproduction.
  • Reproduction Number: LC-DIG-ppmsca-50981 (digital file from original print) LC-USZC4-9020 (color film copy transparency) LC-USZ62-76884 (b&w film copy neg.)
  • Call Number: POS - WWI - US, no. 392 (C size) [P&P]
  • Access Advisory: ---

Obtaining Copies

If an image is displaying, you can download it yourself. (Some images display only as thumbnails outside the Library of Congress because of rights considerations, but you have access to larger size images on site.)

Alternatively, you can purchase copies of various types through Library of Congress Duplication Services.

  1. If a digital image is displaying: The qualities of the digital image partially depend on whether it was made from the original or an intermediate such as a copy negative or transparency. If the Reproduction Number field above includes a reproduction number that starts with LC-DIG. then there is a digital image that was made directly from the original and is of sufficient resolution for most publication purposes.
  2. If there is information listed in the Reproduction Number field above: You can use the reproduction number to purchase a copy from Duplication Services. It will be made from the source listed in the parentheses after the number.

If only black-and-white ("b&w") sources are listed and you desire a copy showing color or tint (assuming the original has any), you can generally purchase a quality copy of the original in color by citing the Call Number listed above and including the catalog record ("About This Item") with your request.

Price lists, contact information, and order forms are available on the Duplication Services Web site.

Access to Originals

Please use the following steps to determine whether you need to fill out a call slip in the Prints and Photographs Reading Room to view the original item(s). In some cases, a surrogate (substitute image) is available, often in the form of a digital image, a copy print, or microfilm.

Is the item digitized? (A thumbnail (small) image will be visible on the left.)

  • Yes, the item is digitized. Please use the digital image in preference to requesting the original. All images can be viewed at a large size when you are in any reading room at the Library of Congress. In some cases, only thumbnail (small) images are available when you are outside the Library of Congress because the item is rights restricted or has not been evaluated for rights restrictions.
    As a preservation measure, we generally do not serve an original item when a digital image is available. If you have a compelling reason to see the original, consult with a reference librarian. (Sometimes, the original is simply too fragile to serve. For example, glass and film photographic negatives are particularly subject to damage. They are also easier to see online where they are presented as positive images.)
  • No, the item is not digitized. Please go to #2.

Do the Access Advisory or Call Number fields above indicate that a non-digital surrogate exists, such as microfilm or copy prints?

  • Yes, another surrogate exists. Reference staff can direct you to this surrogate.
  • No, another surrogate does not exist. Please go to #3.

To contact Reference staff in the Prints and Photographs Reading Room, please use our Ask A Librarian service or call the reading room between 8:30 and 5:00 at 202-707-6394, and Press 3.

You've only scratched the surface of Alonzo family history.

Between 1944 and 2004, in the United States, Alonzo life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1946, and highest in 2004. The average life expectancy for Alonzo in 1944 was 36, and 72 in 2004.

An unusually short lifespan might indicate that your Alonzo ancestors lived in harsh conditions. A short lifespan might also indicate health problems that were once prevalent in your family. The SSDI is a searchable database of more than 70 million names. You can find birthdates, death dates, addresses and more.

What Foringer family records will you find?

There are 1,000 census records available for the last name Foringer. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Foringer census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

There are 72 immigration records available for the last name Foringer. Passenger lists are your ticket to knowing when your ancestors arrived in the USA, and how they made the journey - from the ship name to ports of arrival and departure.

There are 392 military records available for the last name Foringer. For the veterans among your Foringer ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

There are 1,000 census records available for the last name Foringer. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Foringer census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more.

There are 72 immigration records available for the last name Foringer. Passenger lists are your ticket to knowing when your ancestors arrived in the USA, and how they made the journey - from the ship name to ports of arrival and departure.

There are 392 military records available for the last name Foringer. For the veterans among your Foringer ancestors, military collections provide insights into where and when they served, and even physical descriptions.

Phyllis McGuire | View from the Village: Memories of my own World's Greatest Mother

The Greatest Mother in the World poster, depicting a nurse cradling a wounded soldier, was created in 1917, to encourage support for World War I.


WILLIAMSTOWN — There may be one in just about every family’s home, yet, they are treasured. I speak of the World’s Greatest Mother plaques.

Do children think their mother deserves to be called the Greatest Mother in the World because she spoils them, or is because she bandages their scrapes and bruises and kisses them better, reads stories to them, attends the team sports they take part in, lets them play ball in the house?

Mothers come in different shapes and sizes, have different personalities and likes and dislikes, but I think every Greatest Mother in the World has, in common, loving their children unconditionally.

The Greatest Mother in the World was depicted as a nurse in a World War I poster created in 1917. To encourage support of the war, the Red Cross commissioned Alonzo Earl Foringer, an American painter, to create the poster, which showed a young woman in a Red Cross uniform cradling a wounded soldier. The woman’s eyes look upward, as if she is praying.

For some people, the poster brings to mind Michaelangelo’s “Pieta,” a sculpture of mother Mary sorrowfully holding in her lap the body of her only son, Jesus, after the crucifixion.

But, Greatest Mother in the World plaques are popular gifts for Mother’s Day, a happy occasion.

I lucked out with my mother she was so patient and so kind that a cross word never passed between us.

Though she was a practical person, she never scoffed at my fanciful dreams. When I went on about becoming an actress or a singer, she would simply say, “Time will tell.”

The first time I appeared in a school play, Mother created my daffodil costume from yellow crepe paper.

And as Mother colored my hair white with flour for my role in another play, I practiced my part.

“Now, we both know your lines,” Mother said when my hair was white as snow.

I remember Mother wearing spotless, starched house dresses, the scent of Djer Kiss talcum powder clinging to her. When Mother was in those simple cotton dresses, I felt she belonged only to us, her family.

As soon as she put on a skirt and blouse or her best clothes, I knew she was going out into the world to attend a wedding or play bingo with friends.

I felt no harm would come to me when I was with my mother.

Support our journalism. Subscribe today. &rarr

Even when I was an adult visiting Mother for the weekend with my children, I felt safe as well as pampered.

When I offered to help her prepare dinner, she said, “No, you have enough to do.” And she always allowed me the luxury of sleeping in.

Mother kept the children happily occupied, as they “helped” her make muffins for breakfast. They got a kick out of rolling out the dough and then cutting it into circles with a glass.

I gave Mother many a Mother’s Day gift over the years, and don’t remember all of them. But, I think I will never forget the first time I bought a Mother’s Day gift on my own.

I was 8 years old and walked to the Five & Dime store near our home in the Bronx, N.Y., clutching a dollar to pay for the something special I wanted to give my mother.

I went from counter to counter, looking at handkerchiefs, bath powders, hair clips and more, but everything was too ordinary.

I was walking past the greeting cards when I noticed the pretty pictures on display nearby.

As I read a poem inscribed on a framed picture of a wishing well, I knew my search was over.

If there was a wishing well around the corner today,

I’d make a wish in the good old fashioned way,

And when that wish came true,

No one in the world would be happier than you.

I miss you, my angel Momma, but find some comfort in believing you couldn’t be happier than you are in heaven.

Phyllis McGuire writes from her home in Williamstown. The opinions expressed by columnists do not necessarily reflect the views of The Berkshire Eagle.

Shell-shocked: Footage and Sounds of the Front AND American and French Propaganda Posters

World War I was the first time graphic posters were widely used for a political cause. Countries around the world made use of the medium to foster patriotic support for specific needs such as enlistment, war financing, conservation, relief activities, and war-related public employment. Some iconic images came out of the U.S. campaign, for example, James Montgomery Flagg’s Uncle Sam and Alonzo Foringer’s Greatest Mother in the World for the American Red Cross. Dr. Hristova discusses the functions of such posters in representing broader contexts of changing social life.

SHELL-SHOCKED recreates the sensorium of battle at the western front, matching historic silent film footage to audio recreations of battlefield sounds. Featuring sound design by Christopher Plummer and Michigan Tech’s sound design students, this multimedia installation brings the horrific reality experienced by soldiers who fought in the war into sharp contrast with the patriotic rhetoric of AMERICAN AND FRENCH PROPAGANDA POSTERS.

American and French Propaganda Posters are on loan from the Marquette Regional History Center.

Related posts

Dug In: Experiential WWI Trench

September 24 – November 11, 2018 US41 and MacInnes Drive An immersive outdoor trench exhibit invites the public to imagine how soldiers experienced life in the trenches, including “going over the top.” This project is headed by Drs. Stanley Vitton and Kris Mattila (Civil and

And We Were Young

The Hello Girls: The Story of America’s First Female Soldiers

WW1CC Partners and Sponsors

The sponsoring institutions awarding grants include the Michigan Humanities Council Keweenaw National Historical Park Advisory Commission Finlandia Foundation National Chapter and Michigan Council on Arts and Community Affairs through the Copper Country Community Arts Center. The following entities from Michigan Tech are also sponsors of WW1CC: The departments of Humanities, Social Sciences, Visual & Performing Arts, Information Technology, Civil Engineering, and Computer Science College of Sciences & Arts Office of the Vice President of Student Affairs and Advancement Institutional Equity William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning J.R. Van Pelt & Opie Library University Marketing and Communications Film Board and Facilities Management.

WW1CC is made possible in part by a grant from the Michigan Humanities Council, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this program do not necessarily reflect those of the National Endowment for the Humanities or the Michigan Humanities Council.

World War I Poster Collection - Artist unidentified

Inventory of posters by anonymous or unidentified artists

1 Interchurch World Movement. features Lincoln & quote. 2 items. 21x27

2 "All America thinks and acts on National Thrift Day, Feb 3". YMCA. 1 item22x29

3 "Eat more corn." United States Department of Agriculture, Washington, D.C. 2 items. 16x29

4 "United We Serve." United War Work Campaign. 170,500,000. 2 items. 20x30

5 United War Work Campaign. poster for church. 2 items. 19x25

6 "Buy United States Government Bonds." Liberty Bell & Independence Hall. 2 items. 20x30

7 "Buy Liberty Bonds." features profile of Lincoln & quote. 2 items. 20x30

8 "Help fill the war chest/Humanity calls you." features chest filled with money. 2 items. 20x30

9 "White someone gives his life - what are you giving? - think a minute. All of the Red Cross War Fund goes for War Relief." blue border, white background, red cross. 1 item. 20x27

10 "A little starving child brought back to life because you went without some luxury. All of the Red Cross War Fund goes for War Relief." blue border, white background, red cross. 1 item. 20x27

11 Quote by Secretary of the Treasury. Second Liberty Loan of 1917. features soldier holding U.S. flag and sailor holding sign saying "We Depend On You." 1 item. 20x30

12 "The Reformed Church in the United States 400th anniversary of the Reformation. " features heads of Reformed Church educational institutions.1 item. 21x28

13 "The spirit of the War camp community service, Home hospitality." United War Work Campaign. 2 items. 20x30

"The spirit of the War camp community service, Invitations to Home entertaining." United War Work Campaign. 1 items. 20x30

14 "My Daddy bought me a Government Bond". Third Liberty Loan. features child holding bond. 1 item. 20x30

15 "United War Work Campaign." Victory Boys & Girls. 2 items. 25x38

16 "United War Work Campaign." Company poster. 2 item. 25x38

31 "They died for you (killed on the field of battle) Buy Liberty Bonds." features young men from Lancaster County. 2 items. 26x40

76 War Chest Fund poster for business. 1 item. 17x24

88a Red Cross. 1 item

88b "Join the Red Cross." heart shaped. printed on both sides. 1 item.

89 "Make good the promise/Second War Fund/One hundred mission dollars/May 20th-27th." features rainbow coming out of pot of gold in America connecting North America to Europe. 1 item. 11x21

90 "The War of Munitions/How Great Britain has mobilized Her industries." 1 item. 16x21

91 "Humanity Calls? Dare you refuse?" 1 to 31 War Chest. 2 items. 11x21

92 Cablegram. American expeditionary force France. quote from Pershing. United War Work Campaign. 1918 Nov 11-, 18. 1 item. 14x22

96 "Third Liberty Loan Subscriber." red, white & blue flag. Washington, D.C.: Capital Publishing. Bond. 2 items. 9x7

97 "Keep them smiling/this home is helping our boys over there/United War-Work Campaign." features sailor, soldier & officer. red, white & blue border. 2 items. 11x7

98 "The Greatest mother of the world/Join the Red Cross/-All you need is a heart and a dollar." Red Cross nurse holding child on stretcher. Red Cross. 2 items. 10x6

99 "For Our Soldiers and Sailors/November 11-19/National War Work Council."inverted orange triangle. 2 items. 10x7

100 "Third Liberty Loan." features liberty bell. Owners Emblem. triangle. color. 2 items.

101 "Honor Flag of the Third Liberty Loan." The North American. 1917 Apr 7. 1 item. 9x7

102 American Flag. color. 48 stars. 1 item. 7x5 (at widest)

103 "We are pledged to buy." War Saving Stamps Campaign. blue & white. features "Torch of Liberty."1 item. 8x5

104 "Member of United States Food Administration." home card. U.S. emblem. 1 item. 9x6

105 "Member of United States Food Administration." to be hung in front window. U.S. emblem. 1 item. 9x6

106 "Help your American Red Cross Campaign (Jun 18-25)." 1 item. 9x12

107 "Flags of our Allies." Supplement to The North American. 1917 Jun 17. 1 item. 9x12

108 "Last evidence that anyone cares." YMCA. 1 item. 8x14

109 YMCA. "War-Zone home for our boys 'over there.'" National Campaign Nov 11-19 (1917?). 1 item. [miniature of Butler poster ] 8x14

111 French Officer (J. Joffrey) from Public Ledger 1917 May 6. features U.S. & French flags. colored. 1 item. 9x12

112 "Victory Girls." United War Work Campaign. features an eagle. 2 items. 12x8

113 Red Cross, white background, blue border. (1 large red cross & 5 small one pasted on). 1 item. 7x11

114 Liberty Bell. "Third Liberty Loan." blue. 2 items. ht=12

22 "Pour le Retour Souscrivez 4e. emprunt National Credit Foncier D'Algerie et de Tunisie, 43 Rue Cambon, Paris." (French) Signed R.P. 1 item. 41x28

128 "The Call to Duty: Join the Army for Home and Country" [Image] Adapted from the sculpture by Edoardo Cammilli. Published by the Recruiting Committee of the Mayor's Committee on National Defence. 1 item. 30x40

132 "Are you working with Schwab? Charles M. Schwab Director General of the Emergency Fleet Corporation says. " Issued by Publications Section, Emergency Fleet Corporation, Philadelphia. Photo by C. Haimovitz Public Ledger Philadelphia. 1 item. 22x32.

135 &ldquoWe Belong- 100% Strong&rdquo American Red Cross (Lacks usual Red Cross emblem printed in center of poster) 1 item. 18x24.

4. “The Red Cross Nurse.” Artist unknown, 1918

This Red Cross poster explores similar themes to entry 10. As a propaganda piece, it depicts the nurse as a calm figure who can save soldiers no matter how dark their circumstances. However, it presents a more abstract and less explicit view than the first poster, with the “light” and the “darkness” presented more purely as concepts, rather than through the depiction of a muddy, battle-torn field.

The stoical nurse and her spotless uniform imply that entering the medical service brings with it a respectable social position. She is portrayed as an authority figure and someone to aspire to be. This would obviously have been useful when it came to persuading the young women whom this advert was likely targeted towards.


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