The Alliance Française of Newport will present a program about Japanese-American soldiers who fought in  France during World War II.

Dr. JamesT. McIlwain, Professor Emeritus at Brown University, will give a talk on Thursday, May 16, 2019 at the Redwood Library located at 50 Bellevue Avenue in Newport. There will be a Reception at 6:00 p.m. The program begins at 6:45 p.m.

The title of Dr. McIlwain’s presentation is: American Samurai in France: Japanese Americans Liberate Bruyères-en-Vosges, October, 1944

The history of France and that of Americans of Japanese ancestry intersected during WWII in the Vosges, a region of forested hills near the German border.  The 442nd Regimental Combat team, composed largely of Japanese-Americans, was tasked with freeing several small towns in the area that had been occupied by the Germans.  Friendships that developed between the soldiers and those they liberated have lasted to this day.

The event is free for members of The  Alliance Française of Newport and members of The Redwood Library. Guest fee of $15. Reservations are necessary. RSVP by May 12, 2019 to

The Alliance Française of Newport has been part of an international organization for more than 65 years dedicated to the study of the French language and to promoting cultural exchange.  Members of the AFN participate in conversation groups, art gallery and museum events and lectures about French culture and history.

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Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What's Up Newp. He was born and raised in Rhode Island and graduated from Coventry High School. He serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and serves on the Board of Directors for Potter League for Animals. Ryan also is currently the Senior Editor - North America for Mountain News, publisher of OnTheSnow. Ryan is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).