Capt. Jonathan D. Bratten, command historian for the Maine Army National Guard, will present the first talk in the March Collaborative Encounters series at 6 p.m. Thursday, March 1, at the Maine State Library, 230 State St., Augusta. The free talk is titled “The Pine Tree State in France: Maine’s 103rd Infantry Regiment in the Great War,” according to a news release from the state library.

“In 1917, 2,002 Mainers left their homes and families to ‘make the world safe for democracy,'” said Bratten, according to the release. “Their travels took them directly into the heart of the Great War, where they proved that the best of the German Army was no match for the boys from Maine. During my talk, I’ll be sharing the stories of the 103rd Infantry and discussing how the actions of its soldiers changed the course of World War I.”

Bratten’s talk is part of the March Collaborative Encounters series jointly sponsored by the Maine State Library, Maine State Museum and Maine State Archives. The museum’s new exhibition, “Over There and Down Home: Mainers and World War I,” will be open free of charge from 5 to 5:30 p.m. prior to Bratten’s talk.

Future presentations in the series include March 15 — “World War I Open House: Exhibits and Special Collections at the Maine State Museum, Archives, and Library;” March 29 — “The World War I Dye Shortage: Color, Clothes, and Chemistry” by Jacqueline Field; and April 12 — “Maine and World War I” Talk and Book Signing by Jason Libby and Earle G. Shettleworth Jr. All programs begin at 6 p.m.

The Maine State Library, Maine State Museum and Maine State Archives are located in the Cultural Building, adjacent to the Maine State House. For more information, see the museum’s website, or call the museum at 287-2301.

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