Floyd Spragg Strosnider

The following profile was researched and compiled by Candice L. Buchanan and Glenn J. R. T. Toothman III, for www.RainDayBoys.com.

Birth: 24 March 1891 Spraggs, Greene County, Pennsylvania

Parents: Simon K. Strosnider and Elizabeth Stewart

Residence at time of enlistment: Waynesburg, Greene County, Pennsylvania

Physical description: 5 feet 8 inches tall, stout build, dark complexion, brown hair, brown eyes

Death: Killed in action 27 September 1918 Argonne, Champagne-Ardenne, France

Age at death: 27 years old

Last resting place: 9 September 1921 Green Mount Cemetery, Waynesburg, Greene County, Pennsylvania

Military rank: 2nd Lieutenant. Company L, 315th Infantry, 79th Division.

Additional information:

Floyd Spragg Strosnider had worked as a teacher and school principal in Smithfield, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, ahead of the war. His education was received at Waynesburg College, where his life was shaped not only by his graduation with the Class of 1916, but also by the attachment made there to his sweetheart and bride, Alice Lazear McCracken, Class of 1914. Their wedding was a dashing one, taking place 22 December 1917, with the groom and his best man in uniform. The Waynesburg Republican covered the event, reporting:

"At the home of the bride's brother, Dr. Lazear McCracken, Smithfield, Pa., Saturday, December twenty-second, was solemnized the marriage of Miss Alice Lazear McCracken and Lieutenant Floyd Spragg Strosnider. The marriage service was read at three o'clock by the Rev. N. L. Brown, pastor of the First Methodist Episcopal church of Waynesburg, in the presence of about thirty guests, the immediate friends and relatives of the young couple. The bride was gowned in white satin trimmed with Brussels lace and carried a bouquet of white roses. She wore a tulle veil, caught with orange blossoms. She was attended by Miss Blanche Swope, of Pittsburgh, as maid of honor, who wore a pink gown and carried a bouquet of pink roses, and was given in marriage by her brother, Dr. McCracken. The groom had as his best man, Lieutenant Morford Guiher, a cousin of the bride. The ring bearer was little Robert McCracken, who carried the ring in the heart of a rose. Rebecca Guiher, who wore a white lingerie dress with pink ribbons, was flower girl and strewed rose leaves in the pathway of the bridal party. Miss Mary Guiher, cousin of the bride, played the wedding march and during the ceremony. Following the marriage service a two course wedding dinner was served. Covers were laid for fifteen at the bride's table, which was beautifully decorated with pink roses. The bride is a daughter of Dr. and Mrs. J. C. McCracken, of Wind Ridge, R. D., and is a most estimable young woman. She is a graduate of Waynesburg college and is popular in social circles. The groom is a son of Mr. and Mrs. S. K. Strosnider, of Waynesburg, R. D., and is a graduate of Waynesburg college in the class of 191[6]. He is a member of the Delta Sigma Phi fraternity. He was formerly principal of the Smithfield, Pa., high school. Last August he completed a course at the officers' training camp at Ft. Niagara and was commissioned [second] lieutenant. He has since been located at Camp Meade, Annapolis Junction, Md., where he and his bride will spend their honeymoon. Among the guests from Waynesburg were S. K. Strosnider and son, Clarence, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Strosnider, Miss Mary Inghram and Rev. N. L. Brown. The wedding being a military one the rooms of the McCracken home were appropriately decorated with flags."

Alice's wedding dress is preserved in the collection of the Greene County Historical Society. She never remarried.

Floyd was a member of local Company K, 10th Pennsylvania (later 110th Infantry), ahead of the United States' entry into World War I. However, he was transferred to Company L, 315th Infantry, 79th Division with whom he trained and served during the war. A letter written to Floyd's parents by his friend Lieutenant D. M. Garrison of Company K, informed them of details regarding their son's final battle. Floyd had been "in command of his company, leading his men into battle when he met his death. The machine gun bullet which caused his death passed through a Testament which he carried in his pocket and passed through his left breast." The Testament and other personal items were retrieved by Lieutenant Ford of Floyd's Company L, and later returned to the family in Greene County.

In eloquent tribute to their fallen soldier, Waynesburg College, published these words of remembrance, written by Dessie (Rush) Stewart, Class of 1909:

"As the sunset glow of a summer's day tints the evening sky, just so have the valiant deeds of a heroic son of Waynesburg college, turned another blue star to gold. As we sit beneath its rays we seem to see him of old, erect, confident, joyful; his attitude a challenge to life and its difficulties, his soul full of determination to win. Proud indeed is old Waynesburg to claim him as her own. Proud to be called his friends are we who knew him best, and though now his face has faded into one of the best loved pictures that hang on memory's wall, yet the wonderful influence for good which he has left behind still hovers over and uplifts us and thus "goes marching on" the soul of him who "died to make men free."
Only three short years ago and he was one of us, doing his level best in everything. He fitted into and made better and stronger every department of the college of the "four-sided life." In its athletic, its social, its intellectual and its religious phases, he had no superior. Thus he stood a man, "four square to all the winds that blow."
Here, too, within these loved walls where so many have found life's happiness, he met the one to whom, in all the hope and buoyancy of youth he said,
"Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be,
The last of life, for which the first was made;
Our times are in His hand
Who saith "A whole I planned,
Youth shows but half; trust God; see all, nor be afraid."
So bravely, in spite of the hydraheaded dragon of war leering upon the horizon, they started hand in hand down the "long, long trail" that leads to the haven of home. Yet now his own loved home has been given up that ours may be secure and his splendid spirit has gone back to God, clean as it came to earth.
From childhood he had responded nobly to the splendid environment created by his parents and now, in spite of the sorrow caused by his passing, the hearts of the homefolks may well be filled with pride and satisfaction over their realization of the completeness of his life. The service flag in the window proclaims aloud that they have given to the world a hero.
Inscrutable to the finite mind are plans of the Infinite. Strange it seems to us that one so talented, so able and so thorough should be taken when the world so sorely needs real men. Yet the work that he has accomplished already is so much greater than that commonly done by the average span of life, that there is no comparison.
The world has sustained an irreparable loss through the death of Lieutenant Floyd S. Strosnider, but the Great Commander, looking down, could accept no lesser man in his place. Without the supreme sacrifice he made the great victory could not have been complete."


  • Lieut. Floyd S. Strosnider obituary, Waynesburg Republican: Greene County Soldiers' Edition, Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, 4 July 1919, page 6, column 4.
  • "PA National Guard Veterans' Card File, 1867-1921," digital images, Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC), Pennsylvania State Archives Records Information Access System (www.digitalarchives.state.pa.us/archive.asp: viewed 5 June 2018), Floyd S. Strosnider, Private, Co K, 10th Inf., P. N. G.; citing series #19.135.
  • Strosnider-McCracken marriage announcement article, Waynesburg Republican, Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, 27 December 1917, page 1, column 9.
  • "Tribute to Lieut. Floyd S. Strosnider" article, Waynesburg Republican, Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, 2 January 1919.
  • "United States, World War I Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918," digital images, Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=6482 : accessed 5 June 2018), Floyd S. Strosnider draft card, serial no. 770, Local Draft Board, East Franklin, Greene County, Pennsylvania; citing National Archives microfilm publication M1509, FHL roll 1892940.
  • "Was in Command of His Company" article, Waynesburg Republican, Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, 19 December 1918.
  • "WWI Veterans Service and Compensation Files, 1917-1919, 1934-1948," digital images, Ancestry.com (http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=60884 : accessed 5 June 2018), Alice Lazear Strosnider, wife of Floyd Spragg Strosnider - application no. 200057; citing World War I Veterans Service and Compensation File, 1934–1948 (RG 19, Series 19.91), Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC), Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.