Following the Tet Offensive, a shift in U.S. naval strategy in 1967–1968 saw young men fresh out of high school policing the canals and tributaries of South Vietnam aboard PBRs (patrol boat, riverine)—unarmored yet heavily armed and highly maneuverable vessels designed to operate in shallow, weedy waterways. This memoir recounts the experiences of the author and his shipmates as they cruised the Viet Cong-occupied backwaters of the Mekong Delta, and their emotional metamorphosis as wartime events shaped the men they would be for the remainder of their lives.
April means we’re halfway to our next Halloween, and we think it’s a great time to celebrate all things macabre. This month, we’re offering readers 40% off our most riveting—and often downright frightening—books on real-life monsters and mayhem with our true crime sale. Through April 19th, use coupon code TRUECRIME40 on all of our reads about serial killers, unsolved crimes, famous robberies and more. Browse our true crime catalog here!
The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry first deployed to Baltimore, where the soldiers’ exemplary demeanor charmed a mainly secessionist population. Their subsequent service along the Mississippi River was a perfect storm of epidemic disease, logistical failures, guerrilla warfare, profiteering, martinet West Pointers and scheming field officers, along with the doldrums of camp life punctuated by bloody battles. The Michiganders responded with alcoholism, insubordination and depredations.
Yet they saved the Union right at Baton Rouge and executed suicidal charges at Port Hudson. This first modern history of the controversial regiment concludes with a statistical analysis, a roster and a brief summary of its service following conversion to heavy artillery.
The following titles are now available on Kindle:
A Century in Uniform: Military Women in American Films
African American Entertainers in Australia and New Zealand: A History, 1788–1941
Apocalypse TV: Essays on Society and Self at the End of the World
Apocalyptic Ecology in the Graphic Novel: Life and the Environment After Societal Collapse
Autogenic Training: A Mind-Body Approach to the Treatment of Chronic Pain Syndrome and Stress-Related Disorders, 3d ed.
Baseball in Europe: A Country by Country History, 2d ed.
Chasing the Bounty: The Voyages of the Pandora and Matavy
Colonels in Blue—Missouri and the Western States and Territories: A Civil War Biographical Dictionary
Electric Trucks: A History of Delivery Vehicles, Semis, Forklifts and Others
Ethics After Poststructuralism: A Critical Reader
Film History Through Trade Journal Art, 1916–1920
Final Battles of Patton’s Vanguard: The United States Army Fourth Armored Division, 1945–1946
George “Mooney” Gibson: Canadian Catcher for the Deadball Era Pirates
Girl of Steel: Essays on Television’s Supergirl and Fourth-Wave Feminism
Hollywood’s Hard-Luck Ladies: 23 Actresses Who Suffered Early Deaths, Accidents, Missteps, Illnesses and Tragedies
Italian Crime Fiction in the Era of the Anti-Mafia Movement
Japan’s Spy at Pearl Harbor: Memoir of an Imperial Navy Secret Agent
Joe Quigley, Alaska Pioneer: Beyond the Gold Rush
John Derek: Actor, Director, Photographer
Kenny Riley and Black Union Labor Power in the Port of Charleston
Managing Organizational Conflict
Nick McLean Behind the Camera: The Life and Works of a Hollywood Cinematographer
Parenting Through Pop Culture: Essays on Navigating Media with Children
Philip K. Dick: Essays of the Here and Now
Quaker Carpetbagger: J. Williams Thorne, Underground Railroad Host Turned North Carolina Politician
Rhode Island’s Civil War Dead: A Complete Roster
Rosalie Gardiner Jones and the Long March for Women’s Rights
Rosenblatt Stadium: Essays and Memories of Omaha’s Historic Ballpark, 1948–2012
Sacred and Mythological Animals: A Worldwide Taxonomy
Sailing Under John Paul Jones: The Memoir of Continental Navy Midshipman Nathaniel Fanning, 1778–1783
Section 27 and Freedman’s Village in Arlington National Cemetery: The African American History of America’s Most Hallowed Ground
Sicily on Screen: Essays on the Representation of the Island and Its Culture
Springsteen as Soundtrack: The Sound of the Boss in Film and Television
Taking Fire!: Memoir of an Aerial Scout in Vietnam
The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War: A History and Roster
The Civil War in the South Carolina Lowcountry: How a Confederate Artillery Battery and a Black Union Regiment Defined the War
The General Aviation Industry in America: A History, 2d ed.
The Man Who Made Babe Ruth: Brother Matthias of St. Mary’s School
The Showgirl Costume: An Illustrated History
The USS Swordfish: The World War II Patrols of the First American Submarine to Sink a Japanese Ship
The Women of City Point, Virginia, 1864–1865: Stories of Life and Work in the Union Occupation Headquarters
Themes in Latin American Cinema: A Critical Survey, 2d ed.
Understanding Nazi Ideology: The Genesis and Impact of a Political Faith
Virtual Tribe: Indigenous Identity in Social Media
Why the Axis Lost: An Analysis of Strategic Errors
Chasing the Bounty: The Voyages of the Pandora and Matavy
Edited by Donald A. Maxton
Popular films about the Bounty mutiny only scratch the surface. This rebellion on a British vessel in 1789 sparked the voyages of H.M.S. Pandora—dispatched to track down the mutineers and return them to England for court-martial—and the Matavy, a schooner built by the mutineers in Tahiti.
This is the first book to include eyewitness accounts from five men who endured these voyages. Presented in overlapping, chronological order are the first publication of a narrative by a member of Matavy’s crew, who vividly describes a desperate struggle to survive with meager provisions among islands filled with hostile natives. A previously unpublished poem by an anonymous sailor on Pandora recounts the ship’s sinking, the survivors’ tortuous journey to the Dutch East Indies, and their return to England. The captain’s unedited statement on the loss of Pandora is included and appendices summarize the Bounty and Pandora courts-martial and the later history of each narrator.
By January 1945, Nazi Germany’s defeat seemed inevitable yet much fighting remained. The shortest way home for American troops was towards Berlin. General George S. Patton’s Third Army would carve its way into the German heartland, the Fourth Armored Division once again serving as his vanguard.
This companion volume to the author’s Patton’s Vanguard: The United States Army Fourth Armored Division covers the final months of combat: the drive to Bitburg; the daring exploitation of the bridgeheads on the Moselle, Rhine and Main Rivers; Patton’s ill-fated raid to rescue his son-in-law from a prisoner of war camp deep behind enemy lines; the first liberation of a concentration camp on the Western Front; the drive toward Chemnitz; the controversial push into Czechoslovakia; and the little-known encounter with General Andrey Vlasov’s turncoat Russian Liberation Army.
Understanding Nazi Ideology: The Genesis and Impact of a Political Faith
Carl Müller Frøland
Translated by John Irons
Nazism was deeply rooted in German culture. From the fertile soil of German Romanticism sprang ideas of great significance for the genesis of the Third Reich ideology—notions of the individual as a mere part of the national collective, and of life as a ceaseless struggle between opposing forces.
This book traces the origins of the “political religion” of Nazism. Ultra-nationalism and totalitarianism, racial theory and anti–Semitism, nature mysticism and occultism, eugenics and social Darwinism, adoration of the Führer and glorification of violence—all are explored. The book also depicts the dramatic development of the Nazi movement—and the explosive impact of its political faith, racing from its bloody birth in the trenches of World War I to its cataclysmic climax in the Holocaust and World War II.
Section 27 and Freedman’s Village in Arlington National Cemetery: The African American History of America’s Most Hallowed Ground
Ric Murphy and Timothy Stephens
From its origination, Arlington National Cemetery’s history has been compellingly intertwined with that of African Americans. This book explains how the grounds of Arlington House, formerly the home of Robert E. Lee and a plantation of the enslaved, became a military camp for Federal troops, a freedmen’s village and farm, and America’s most important burial ground. During the Civil War, the property served as a pauper’s cemetery for men too poor to be returned to their families, and some of the very first war dead to be buried there include over 1,500 men who served in the United States Colored Troops. More than 3,800 former slaves are interred in section 27, the property’s original cemetery.
Why the Axis Lost: An Analysis of Strategic Errors
The factors leading to the defeat of the Axis Powers in World War II have been debated for decades. One prevalent view is that overwhelming Allied superiority in materials and manpower doomed the Axis. Another holds that key strategic and tactical blunders lost the war—from Hitler halting his panzers outside Dunkirk, allowing more than 300,000 trapped Allied soldiers to escape, to Admiral Yamamoto falling into the trap set by the U.S. Navy at Midway.
Providing a fresh perspective on the war, this study challenges both views and offers an alternative explanation: the Germans, Japanese and Italians made poor design choices in ships, planes, tanks and information security—before and during the war—that forced them to fight with weapons and systems that were too soon outmatched by the Allies. The unprecedented arms race of World War II posed a fundamental “design challenge” the Axis powers sometimes met but never mastered.
Taking Fire!: Memoir of an Aerial Scout in Vietnam
David L. Porter
As a first lieutenant in the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment, U.S. Army pilot David Porter was section leader in an Aerial Scout platoon in Vietnam. Their mission was to conduct reconnaissance in OH-6 aircraft (a.k.a. Light Observation Helicopter or “Loach”) near the Cambodian border. Finding and engaging the enemy at low altitude in coordination with an AH-1 Cobra gunship circling above, these units developed a remarkable method of fighting the Viet Cong: Hunter-Killer Operations.
The tactic had great local success but died with the war. Few today are aware of the hazards these pilots faced during times of intense combat. Porter’s vivid memoir recounts the internal workings of a legendary air cavalry troop, in-the-cockpit combat actions, and the men who were key players on this perilous battleground.
From Omaha Beach to Nuremberg: A Memoir of World War II Combat and the International Military Tribunal
Daniel Altman with Fawn Zwickel
A tough Jewish kid from the Bronx, Dan Altman enlisted in the Army when the U.S. entered World War II. Adapting street smarts to soldiering, he became a skilled sharpshooter and attained the rank of sergeant in the 1st Infantry Division.
On D-Day, Altman’s unit was among the second wave to assault the German defenses at Normandy. Surviving the invasion, the fighting in the lethal hedgerow country, the Hürtgen Forest, and the Battle of the Bulge, he was later assigned to gather information on the Nazi atrocities performed at the concentration camps for the trials at Nuremburg.
Beginning with his plunge into the blood-tinged surf at Omaha Beach, his candid, often graphic memoir is presented here as told to his granddaughter.
Celebrate Women’s History Month with our new women’s studies catalog!
Christopher H. Tebault, Surgeon to the Confederacy
Alan I. West
Among the top physicians of the Confederacy, Christopher H. Tebault distinguished himself as a surgeon during the Civil War. Recognized for his medical contributions after the war, he was nominated Surgeon General of the United Confederate Veterans, a position he used to compile the history of Confederate medicine, advocate for veterans and contribute to Southern literature. A staunch “Lost Cause” proponent, he also fought Reconstruction policies and the enfranchisement of former slaves.
Drawing on his own writings, this first biography of Tebault describes his notable medical education in New Orleans and the ingenuity he used to treat wounds and illness, as well as his struggles against Reconstruction policies, situating his story in the problematic context of Confederate history that persists today.
American Military Cemeteries, 2d ed.
Dean W. Holt
This updated edition of the 1992 reference work (“exhaustive…fascinating”—Library Journal) contains comprehensive information about United States military cemeteries, including how each cemetery was chosen, why it was established, and notable individuals buried therein. Covered are cemeteries operated by the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of the Army, the National Park Service, the American Battle Monuments Commission, and the various states, among others, along with smaller and “lost” cemeteries. Appendices provide lists of installations by state and by year of establishment, as well as information on headstones, markers and the Medal of Honor.
Nazi Films in America, 1933–1942
From 1933 until America’s entry into World War II in 1941, nearly 500 Nazi films were shown in American theaters, accounting for nearly half of all foreign language film imports during the period. These poorly disguised propaganda films were produced by Germany’s top studios and featured prominent pro–German and Nazi actors, directors and technicians. The films were replete with overt and covert anti–Jewish imagery and themes, but in spite of this obvious intent to use the medium to justify Nazi ascendancy, viewers and film critics from such prominent publications as the New York Times, Variety, the Washington Post and the Chicago Times consistently overlooked the films’ anti–Semitic message, dubbing them harmless entertainment.
This is the complete history of German films shown in America from the founding of the Nazi government to America’s involvement in the war. Summaries, descriptions and discussions of these almost 500 films serve to examine the major filmmakers and distributors who kept the German film industry alive during the rule of Hitler and the Third Reich. Special emphasis is placed on films directly commissioned by Joseph Goebbels, head of the German Ministry for the Enlightenment of the People and Propaganda and the man directly responsible for ensuring that the anti–Semitic ideology of the new regime was reflected in all films produced after January 30, 1933. Rarely seen photographs and illustrations complete an in-depth study of the Nazi use of this global medium.
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Inside the Spanish-American War: A History Based on First-Person Accounts
James M. McCaffrey
This is the story of the Spanish-American War, told not from the perspective of generals, policy makers, or politicians, but from that of the soldiers, sailors and marines in the field and the reporters who covered their efforts. Concentration on the daily lives of these people provides insight into the often overlooked facets of a soldier’s life, detailing their training and interaction with weaponry, their food, clothing, and medical supplies, and their personal interactions and daily struggles. While the Spanish-American War set the stage for America’s emergence as a global power, this is its history on an individual scale, as seen through the eyes of those upon whom the war had the most immediate impact.
Battle History of the United States Marine Corps, 1775–1945
George B. Clark
Designed as a reference work for those interested in the combat history of the U.S. Marine Corps, this book describes the engagements from the formation of the Continental Marines to the Corps’ great exercise at the Battle of Okinawa. Organized chronologically, the individual skirmishes illustrate how each of the Marine Corps’ engagements contributed to the formation and evolution of the United States. Persons and divisions of note are mentioned, including key players, commanders and medal recipients.
After more than three years of grim fighting, General Ulysses Grant had a plan to end the Civil War—laying siege to Petersburg, Virginia, thus cutting off supplies to the Confederate capital at Richmond. He established his headquarters at City Point on the James River, requiring thousands of troops, tons of supplies, as well as extensive medical facilities and staff.
Nurses flooded the area, yet many did not work in medical capacities—they served as organizers, advocates and intelligence gatherers. Nursing emerged as a noble profession with multiple specialties. Drawing on a range of primary and secondary sources, this history covers the resilient women who opened the way for others into postwar medical, professional and political arenas.
Lost to the Shoah: Eight Lives
Vera Schiff with Jeff McLaughlin
It is important to remember not just what the Holocaust was but the individuals who were the subjects of its unrelenting Nazi brutalities. Written by a survivor about the people she knew and cared for, these eight stories fight against the depiction of Jews as victims and victims only, and individualize a tragedy that is too often abstracted into dates and statistics.
Amidst the dramatic narrative, there is a brutal honesty and frankness that makes these stories far more infuriating, sad and shocking than any fictional attempt to convey what it was like to be human in such inhuman circumstances. These biographies remind readers of the consequences of hate upon the fragile beauty and complexity of human life.
American Zouaves, 1859–1959: An Illustrated History
Daniel J. Miller
The elite French Zouaves, with their distinctive, colorful uniforms, set an influential example for volunteer soldiers during the Civil War and continued to inspire American military units for a century. Hundreds of militia companies adopted the flamboyant uniform to emulate the gallantry and martial tradition of the Zouaves.
Drawing on fifty years of research, this volume provides a comprehensive state-by-state catalog of American Zouave units, richly illustrated with rare and previously unpublished photographs and drawings. The author dispels many misconceptions and errors that have persisted over the last 150 years.
4–31 Infantry in Iraq’s Triangle of Death
Darrell E. Fawley III
The Iraqi Triangle of Death, south of Baghdad, was a raging inferno of insurgent activity in August of 2006; by November 2007, attacks had been suppressed to such an extent as to return the area to near obscurity. In the intervening months, the U.S. Army 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry (“Polar Bears”) employed a counterinsurgency approach that set the conditions for a landmark peace agreement that has held to the present.
With a focus on counterinsurgency, this book is the first to look at the breadth of military operations in Yusifiyah, Iraq, and to analyze the methods the Polar Bears employed. It is a story not of those who fought in the Triangle of Death, but of how they fought.
Connecticut privateer Nathaniel Fanning (1755–1805) was captured by the British during the Revolutionary War. Upon his release, he joined the Continental Navy and sailed as a midshipman under Admiral John Paul Jones during his most famous battles. Fanning later obtained his own command, sailing from French ports to prey upon British warships.
This new edition of Fanning’s memoir—first published in 1806—provides a vivid account of wartime peril and hardship at sea, and a first-hand character study of Jones as an apparent tyrant and narcissist. Vocabulary, spelling and narrative style have changed in the more than two centuries since Fanning’s chronicle, and some details clash with historical and geographical data. The editor has updated and annotated the text for modern readers, but attempted to retain much of the original memoir’s style.
Some of the most dramatic and consequential events of the Civil War era took place in the South Carolina Lowcountry between Charleston and Savannah. From Robert Barnwell Rhett’s inflammatory 1844 speech in Bluffton calling for secession, to the last desperate attempts by Confederate forces to halt Sherman’s juggernaut, the region was torn apart by war.
This history tells the story through the experiences of two radically different military units—the Confederate Beaufort Volunteer Artillery and the U.S. 1st South Carolina Regiment, the first black Union regiment to fight in the war—both organized in Beaufort, the heart of the Lowcountry.
Greene and Cornwallis in the Carolinas: The Pivotal Struggle in the American Revolution, 1780–1781
Jeffrey A. Denman and John F. Walsh
The story of the Revolutionary War in the Northern colonies is well known but the war that raged across the South in 1780–1781—considered by some the “unknown Revolution”—included some of the most important yet least studied engagements.
Drawing extensively on their letters, this book follows the campaigns of General Nathanael Greene and Lord Charles Cornwallis as they fought across the Carolinas, and offers a compelling look at their leadership. The theater of war in which the two commanders operated was populated by various ethnic and religious groups and separated geographically, economically and politically into the low country and the simmering backcountry, setting the stage for what was to come.
A former Harvard professor of decision science and game theory draws on those disciplines in this review of controversial strategic and tactical decisions of World War II.
Allied leaders—although outstanding in many ways—sometimes botched what now is termed meta-decision making or deciding how to decide. Operation Jubilee, a single-division raid on Dieppe, France, in August 1942, for example, illustrated the pitfalls of groupthink. In the Allied invasion of North Africa three months later, American and British leaders fell victim to the planning fallacy: having unrealistically rosy expectations of an easy victory. In Sicily in the summer of 1943, they violated the millennia-old principle of command unity—now re-endorsed and elaborated on by modern theorists. Had Allied strategists understood the game theory of bluffing, in January 1944 they might well not have landed two-plus divisions at Anzio in Italy.
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Formula for Failure in Vietnam: The Folly of Limited Warfare
Drawing on a range of sources, including original interviews with the commanders ordered to fight a land war in Southeast Asia, former U.S. Army infantry officer recounts his experiences in Vietnam as a company commander and as a battalion- and division-level operations officer carrying out those orders. The crucial flaws of the Johnson Administration’s strategy of attrition are analyzed—the failure to seal off the theater of battle from Chinese and Soviet resupply, and allowing North Vietnamese forces to maintain sanctuaries in Laos, Cambodia and even North Vietnam.
Peyton Randolph and Revolutionary Virginia
Robert M. Randolph
In 1763, King George III’s government adopted a secret policy to reduce the American colonies to “due subordinance” and exploit them. This brought on the American Revolution. In Virginia, there was virtually unanimous agreement that Britain’s actions violated Virginia’s constitutional rights. Yet Virginians were deeply divided as to a remedy. Peyton Randolph, Speaker of the House of Burgesses 1766–1775 (and chairman of the First and Second Continental Congresses), worked to unify the colony, keeping the conservatives from moving too slowly and the radicals from moving too swiftly. Virginia was thus the only major colony to enter the Revolution united. Randolph was a masterful politician who produced majorities for critical votes leading to revolution.
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Woodrow Wilson as Commander in Chief: The Presidency and the Great War
Michael P. Riccards and Cheryl A. Flagg
This first study on Woodrow Wilson as the commander in chief during the Great War analyzes his management style before the war, his diplomacy and his battle with the Senate. It considers the war as representing the collapse of Western traditional virtues and examines Wilson’s attempt to restore them. Emphasizing the American war effort on the domestic front, it also discusses Wilson’s rise to power, his education, career, and work as governor as necessary steps in his formation. The authors deal honestly and critically with the racism that characterized this brilliant but limited career.
Hoping to stay out of Vietnam, David Lyman joined the U.S. Naval Reserve to avoid the draft. By summer 1967 he was with a SeaBee unit on a beach in Chu Lai. A reporter in civilian life, Lyman was assigned to Military Construction Battalion 71 as a photojournalist. He documented the lives of the hard-working and hard-drinking SeaBees as they engineered roads, runways, heliports and base camps for the troops.
The author was shot at, almost blown up by a road mine, and spent nights in a mortar pit as rockets bombarded a nearby Marine runway. He rode on convoys through Viet Cong territory to photograph villages outside “The Wire.” The stories and photographs Lyman published as editor of the battalion’s newspaper, The Transit, form the basis of this memoir.
Rhode Island’s Civil War Dead: A Complete Roster
Rhode Island sent 23,236 men to fight in the Civil War. They served in eight infantry regiments, three heavy artillery regiments, three regiments and one battalion of cavalry, a company of hospital guards and 10 batteries of light artillery. Hundreds more served in the U.S. Army, Navy and Marine Corps. Rhode Islanders participated in nearly every major battle of the war, firing the first volleys at Bull Run, and some of the last at Appomattox.
How many died in the Civil War is a question that has long eluded historians. Drawing on a 20-year study of regimental histories, pension files, letters, diaries, and visits to every cemetery in the state, award-winning Civil War historian Robert Grandchamp documents 2,217 Rhode Islanders who died as a direct result of military service. Each regiment is identified, followed by the name, rank and place of residence for each soldier, the details of their deaths and, where known, their final resting places.
Deep Space Warfare: Military Strategy Beyond Orbit
John C. Wright
Since the Cold War, outer space has become of strategic importance for nations looking to seize the ultimate high ground. World powers establishing a presence there must consider, among other things, how they will conduct warfare in orbit. Leaders must dispense with “Buck Rogers” notions about operations in space and realize that policies there will have serious ramifications for geopolitics.
How should nations view space? How should they fight there? What would space warfare look like and how should strategists approach it? Offering critical observations regarding this unique theater of international relations, a military professional explores the strategic implications as human affairs move beyond Earth’s atmosphere.
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Women in the Struggle for Irish Independence
Women have too often been written out of history. This is especially true in the fight for Irish independence. The women’s struggle was three-fold, beginning with the suffragettes’ fight to win the vote. Then came the push for fair pay and working conditions. Binding them together became part of the national struggle, first for home rule, then for the establishment of an Irish Republic.
The Easter Rising of 1916 brought them together as soldiers of the Republic. Through the terrible years that followed, they became the conscience of Republicanism. Following independence, they were betrayed by the men they had served alongside. DeValera and the Catholic Church restricted their roles in society—they were to be wives and mothers without a voice. It was not until Ireland’s entry into the European community and the self destruction of a corrupt Church that Irish women were acknowledged for what they had achieved.
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The Cossack Struggle Against Communism, 1917–1945
The downfall of tsarism in 1917 left the peoples of Russia facing an uncertain future. Nowhere were those anxieties felt more than among the Cossacks. The steppe horsemen had famously guarded the empire’s frontiers, stampeded demonstrators in its cities, suppressed peasant revolts in the countryside and served as bodyguards to its rulers. Their way of life, intricately bound to the old order, seemed imperiled by the revolution and especially by the Bolshevik seizure of power.
Many Cossacks took up arms against the Soviet regime, providing the anticommunist cause with some of its best warriors—as well as its most notorious bandits. This book chronicles their decades-long campaign against the Bolsheviks, from the tumultuous days of the Russian Civil War through the doldrums of foreign exile and finally to their fateful collaboration with the Third Reich.
From the Crimean War through the Second Boer War, the British Empire sought to solve the “Great Gun Question”—to harness improvements to ordnance, small arms, explosives and mechanization made possible by the Industrial Revolution. The British public played a surprising but overlooked role, offering myriad suggestions for improvements to the civilian-led War Office.
Meanwhile, politicians and army leaders argued over control of the country’s ground forces in a decades-long struggle that did not end until reforms of 1904 put the military under the Secretary of State for War. Following the debate in the press, voters put pressure on both Parliament and the War Office to modernize ordnance and military administration. The “Great Gun Question” was as much about weaponry as about who ultimately controlled military power.
Drawing on ordnance committee records and contemporary news reports, this book fills a gap in the history of British military technology and army modernization prior to World War I.
The United States and the Rise of Tyrants: Diplomatic Relations with Nationalist Dictatorships Between the World Wars
Lawrence E. Gelfand and John Day Tully
Nationalist dictatorships proliferated around the world during the interwar years of the 1920s and 1930s. Policymakers in Washington, D.C., reasoning that non-Communist regimes were not necessarily a threat to democracy or national interests, found it expedient to support them. People living under these governments associated the United States with their oppressors, with long-term negative consequences for U.S. policy.
American policymakers were primarily concerned with fostering stability in these countries. The dictatorships, eager to maintain political order and create economic growth, looked to American corporations and bankers, whose heavy investments cemented the need to support the regimes. Through an examination of consular records in nine countries, the author describes the logistics and consequences of these relationships.
Among the more than 260 American submarines that patrolled the Pacific during World War II, the USS Swordfish in 1941 was the first to sink a Japanese armed merchant ship, marking the beginning of the submarine’s colorful history. A series of seven commanders led Swordfish’s 13 war patrols. Each skipper had a distinct leadership style. Some were successful in sinking enemy ships; others returned to port empty-handed. Yet all patrols risked dangerously close encounters with the enemy and the unforgiving nature of the open sea.
Drawing on archival sources and interviews with veteran sailors, this first full-length history of the Swordfish provides detailed accounts of each patrol and covers the mysterious disappearance of the legendary submarine on its final mission.
After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, America’s fast carrier task forces, with their aircraft squadrons and powerful support warships, went on the offensive. Under orders from Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, the newly appointed Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, as the Commander-in-Chief of the Pacific Fleet, took the fight to the Japanese, using island raids to slow their advance in the Pacific.
Beginning in February 1942, a series of task force raids led by the carriers USS Enterprise, USS Yorktown, USS Lexington and USS Hornet were launched, beginning in the Marshall Islands and Gilbert Islands. An attempted raid on Rabaul was followed by successful attacks on Wake Island and Marcus Island. The Lae-Salamaua Raid countered Japanese invasions on New Guinea. The most dramatic was the unorthodox Tokyo (Doolittle) Raid, where 16 carrier-launched B-25 medium bombers demonstrated that the Japanese mainland was open to U.S. air attacks.
The raids had a limited effect on halting the Japanese advance but kept the enemy away from Hawaii, the U.S. West coast and the Panama Canal, and kept open lines of communications to Australia.
This biographical dictionary catalogs the Union army colonels who commanded regiments from Missouri and the western States and Territories during the Civil War. The seventh volume in a series documenting Union army colonels, this book details the lives of officers who did not advance beyond that rank. Included for each colonel are brief biographical excerpts and any available photographs, many of them published for the first time.
American Gadfly: The Intellectual Odyssey of Paul Fussell
Ronald R. Gray
The American cultural historian, literary and social critic and college professor Paul Fussell (1924–2012) is primarily noted for his famous work The Great War and Modern Memory, but he also wrote and edited 21 books on a wide variety of topics, ranging from 18th century British literature to works on World War II and sardonic critiques of American society and culture. This book offers a thorough introduction to his writings and thought, and argues for Fussell’s importance and relevancy. Covering Fussell’s traumatic experience in World War II and the important influence it had on his life and outlook, this intellectual biography puts in context Fussell’s perspectives on ethics, the human experience, war, and literature as an evaluative and critical endeavor.
PT Boat Odyssey: In the Pacific War with Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 16, 1943–1945
Robert P. Gelzheiser
During the Pacific War between the United States and Imperial Japanese navies, the author’s father, Francis Gelzheiser, deployed with Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 16A, from New Orleans to Panama to Seattle and to Attu Island in the Aleutians. After their return voyage, the PT boats journeyed to New Guinea, then battled Japanese kamikazes for the Philippine Island of Mindoro.
Like many World War II veterans, Gelzheiser only shared his recollections of combat later in life. The author chronicles his father’s experience, details the roles PT boats played in the war and examines why, despite America’s overwhelming wartime manufacturing capacity, the Japanese believed they could still win the war.
McFarland is exhibiting at a number of regional and national conferences in the coming months, and conferees are encouraged to take the opportunity to peruse our books and meet an editor. Schedule an appointment by emailing us in advance (Layla Milholen, Gary Mitchem, or Dré Person), or stop by the McFarland booth in the exhibit room for a casual conversation with an editor.
Popular Culture Association in the South Sept 26-28, Wilmington, NC, Layla Milholen
Association for the Study of African American Life and History Oct 3-5, Charleston, SC, Dré Person
Midwest Popular Culture Association Oct 10-13 Cincinnati, OH, Layla Milholen
American Folklore Society Oct 16-19, Baltimore, MD, Gary Mitchem
South Central Modern Language Association Oct 24-26, Little Rock, AR, Gary Mitchem
Mid-Atlantic Popular Culture Association Nov 7-9, 2019, Pittsburgh, PA, Gary Mitchem
Film and History Nov 13-17, Madison, WI, Dré Person
National Women’s Studies Association Nov 14-17, San Francisco, CA, Layla Milholen
South Atlantic Modern Language Association Nov 15–17, Atlanta, GA, Gary Mitchem
American Philosophical Association Jan 8-11, Philadelphia, PA, Dré Person
Modern Language Association Jan 9-12, Seattle, WA, Gary Mitchem
Cinema & Media Studies
Comics & Graphic Narratives
The first Republican president since the Great Depression, Dwight Eisenhower was the victorious supreme allied commander of World War II’s European theater, but a political novice when he moved into the White House in 1953. To help make domestic policy, he recruited two of the country’s richest businessmen—Cleveland industrialist George Humphrey and General Motors president Charles Wilson—with the goals of ensuring American postwar prosperity and developing a defense posture against the nuclear threat of the Soviet Union.
This book provides the first detailed examination of how Humphrey and Wilson helped shape Eisenhower’s policies and priorities. Persuasive and charming, Treasury Secretary Humphrey was obsessed with cutting spending. Defense Secretary Wilson—whose departmental funding comprised most of the federal budget—bore the brunt of Humphrey’s anti-spending campaign, while struggling to master his brief and control the restive military bureaucracy. The frugality of the Humphrey-Wilson years manifested in an unambitious domestic agenda and a military that seemed to lag behind the Soviets in key areas, leading to disastrous Republican losses in the elections of 1958 and 1960.
Elbridge Durbrow’s War in Vietnam: The Ambassador’s Influence on American Involvement, 1957–1961
Ronald Bruce Frankum, Jr.
Elbridge Durbrow served as the third United States ambassador to the Republic of Vietnam from 1957 to 1961. His relationships with Vietnamese president Ngô Đình Diệm and members of the Military Assistance Advisory Group in Saigon helped to shape his tenure in office, which ultimately concluded with his decision to end his support for the Vietnamese leader as well as turn away from the American military representatives who had earned Ngô Đình Diệm’s trust.
This triangular relationship was mired in clashes of ego and personality that often interfered with the American decision making process. Durbrow and his embassy staff, rather than work with the Vietnamese leadership, chose to focus on the negative and reported to Washington only those items that reinforced this perspective. They created an atmosphere of distrust and anxiety that neither the Americans nor Vietnamese could overcome in the 1960s and helped to create the conditions for greater United States involvement in Southeast Asia.
Civil War Taxes: A Documentary History, 1861–1900
John Martin Davis, Jr.
During the Civil War, both the North and South were challenged by fiscal and monetary needs, but physical differences such as gold reserves, industrialization and the blockade largely predicted the war’s outcome from the onset. To raise revenue for the war effort, every possible person, business, activity and property was assessed, but projections and collections were seldom up to expectations, and waste, fraud and ineffectiveness in the administration of the tax systems plagued both sides. This economic history uses forensic examination of actual documents to discover the various taxes that developed from the Civil War, including the direct and poll taxes, which were dropped; the income tax, which stands today; and the war tax, which was effective for only a short time.
Plants Go to War: A Botanical History of World War II
“In this impressively researched exploration, esteemed ethnobotanist Sumner takes a scholarly yet totally accessible approach to the myriad ways plant materials were critical to both Allied and Axis war efforts. With balanced attention to domestic sacrifices and ingenuity, Sumner’s astonishing discoveries make this a fascinating read for botany buffs and those steeped in military history.”—Booklist
The C-124 Globemaster—a U.S. military heavy-lift transport in service 1950 through 1974—barreling down a runway was an awesome sight. The aircraft’s four 3800 hp piston engines (the largest ever mass-produced), mounted on its 174-foot wingspan, could carry a 69,000-pound payload of tanks, artillery or other cargo, or 200 fully equipped troops, at more than 300 mph.
The flight crew, perched three stories above the landing gears in an unpressurized cockpit, relied, like Magellan, on celestial fixes to navigate over oceans. With a world-wide mission delivering troops and materials to such destinations as the Congo, Vietnam, Thule, Greenland and Antarctica, the Globemaster lived up to its name and was foundational to what Time magazine publisher Henry Luce termed the “American Century.”
Drawing on archives, Air Force bases, libraries and accident sites, and his own recollections as a navigator, the author details Cold War confrontations and consequent strategies that emerged after Douglas Aircraft Company delivered the first C-124A to the Military Air Transport Service in 1949.
Browse our latest catalog of Vietnam War memoirs, and, through August 31, get 20% off your order with coupon code VIETNAM19!
Nothing in the small village of Bazoilles-sur-Meuse in the northeast of France bears witness today to the 13,000–bed Bazoilles Hospital Center located there during World War I. Yet in 1918–1919 more than 63,000 American soldiers received treatment there—three out of every 100 U.S. servicemen and women who served in Europe.
This richly illustrated history describes daily life and medical care at Bazoilles, providing a vivid picture of the conditions for both patients and personnel, along with stories of those who worked there, and those who were treated or died there.
Hattie Lawton was a young Pinkerton detective who with her partner, Timothy Webster, spied for the U.S. Secret Service during the Civil War. Working in Richmond, the two posed as husband and wife. A dazzling blonde from New York and a handsome Englishman, both with checkered pasts, they were matched in charm, cunning, duplicity and boldness. Betrayed by their own spymaster, Allan Pinkerton, they fell into the hands of the dictator of Richmond, the notorious General John H. “Hog” Winder.
This lively history, scrupulously researched from all available sources, corrects the record on many points and definitively answers the long-standing question of Hattie Lawton’s true identity.
Our Fall 2019 new books catalog is now available—browse our authors’ new and forthcoming titles today!
Plants Go to War: A Botanical History of World War II
As the first botanical history of World War II, Plants Go to War examines military history from the perspective of plant science. From victory gardens to drugs, timber, rubber, and fibers, plants supplied materials with key roles in victory. Vegetables provided the wartime diet both in North America and Europe, where vitamin-rich carrots, cabbages, and potatoes nourished millions. Chicle and cacao provided the chewing gum and chocolate bars in military rations. In England and Germany, herbs replaced pharmaceutical drugs; feverbark was in demand to treat malaria, and penicillin culture used a growth medium made from corn. Rubber was needed for gas masks and barrage balloons, while cotton and hemp provided clothing, canvas, and rope. Timber was used to manufacture Mosquito bombers, and wood gasification and coal replaced petroleum in European vehicles. Lebensraum, the Nazi desire for agricultural land, drove Germans eastward; troops weaponized conifers with shell bursts that caused splintering. Ironically, the Nazis condemned non-native plants, but adopted useful Asian soybeans and Mediterranean herbs. Jungle warfare and camouflage required botanical knowledge, and survival manuals detailed edible plants on Pacific islands. Botanical gardens relocated valuable specimens to safe areas, and while remote locations provided opportunities for field botany, Trees surviving in Hiroshima and Nagasaki live as a symbol of rebirth after vast destruction.
We’re turning 40, and we’re celebrating with a special fortieth anniversary sale! Through June 30, get a 25% discount on ALL books when you use the code ANN2019. And if you’ll be in our area (Ashe County, North Carolina, in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains), we’d love to see you at our open house event on Friday, June 14. Thank you for supporting our first 40 years—we look forward to celebrating many more birthdays with you.
Vietnam Veterans Unbroken: Conversations on Trauma and Resiliency
Jacqueline Murray Loring
For 50 years, civilians have avoided hearing about the controversial experiences of Vietnam veterans, many of whom suffer through post-traumatic stress alone. Through interviews conducted with 17 soldiers, this book shares the stories of those who have been silenced. These men and women tell us about life before and after the war. They candidly share stories of 40–plus years lived on the “edge of the knife” and many wonder what their lives would be like if they had come home to praise and parades. They offer their tragedies and successes to newer veterans as choices to be made or rejected.
On June 14, 2019, McFarland will celebrate its fortieth anniversary with an open house party. From noon to five, our campus at 960 Hwy 88 W, Jefferson, NC will be open to the public with finger food, conversation and tours available, and many of our authors will be in attendance. To stay up-t0-date with event information, follow our event page. Below is a brief company history, with personal thoughts, by founder and editor-in-chief Robert Franklin.
McFarland Publishers Now Forty Years Old
by Robert Franklin
McFarland’s history (founder, Robbie Franklin, me): My close friends Biff and Alicia Stickel were burned out special ed teachers in Connecticut, early 70’s. What to do? Back to the land! They (and their little daughter Maranatha Shone Stickel) drove south till they loved the vibe and the scenery and wound up living on Peak Road from 1972 through part of 1978 (and birthing Micah Stickel). Alicia played piano at the local Baptist church and they were cofounders of the Creston Co-op. I visited them in ’72 (instantly fell for the land and people, the forefinger car salute, the almost drinkable river) and again every year after, and when wife Cheryl Roberts came into my life in 1975, we visited. Soon I was bragging about Ashe County to everybody – “If your car breaks down, the very next person to come along will stop and ask if you need help.” I hope a few readers can recognize the Stickels’ name (he goes by Richard now; they live in Toronto). They are the reason McFarland was begun in Ashe County. We present band of publishers, about fifty in number, owe them great honor.
I did not learn till after we moved here in 1979 that my Revolutionary War ancestor Lieutenant Robert McFarland, after whupping the king at Kings Mountain, lived up here in the 1790s. He then went overmountain to become the first ever sheriff of Greene/Washington County, Tennessee. (I was born in Memphis.)
McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers is our official name. Founded in April 1979 right here. I had been the executive editor of a smallish scholarly publisher in New Jersey; my mentor/boss/friend Eric Moon (a charismatic Brit) knew before I did it was time for me to go off on “my own” (very misleading words!). The local Ashe County newspaper was failing by 1978 and at first I thought, o.k., I’m an editor type, maybe I can start up a new one. Between summer and Christmas the local fellow David Desautels decided the same thing and very successfully started The Jefferson Times. We became friends and McFarland’s earliest two or three books (including a biography of Soviet leader Brezhnev) were typeset using off-hours time on that new newspaper’s equipment. Katy Zell Taylor was our first fulltime employee (Ashe Central H.S. yearbook editor!) and did a lot of typesetting and correcting. Dental Care in Society was our first published book, in 1980 (ask me some day).
After deciding up in New Jersey to stay with book (versus newspaper) publishing, I phoned the Jefferson Post Office in February 1979 to set up a box number mailing address – they said people had to apply in person. Whew! So I flew from Newark to Tri-Cities, Tennessee (what did I know?), rented a car, drove to Jefferson (hours!), filled out a form, got back in the car, drove back to Tri-Cities, and got back home not long before day was done.
A couple of months later, on April 1, 1979, Cheryl and I packed our former life stuff (including hundreds of books—heavy!) in a small U-Haul, attached it to our VW bug, and began to drive south, the Stickels’ Ashe County on our minds.
My ninth-grade homeroom friend (Toledo, Ohio), Mike Strand, had helped with some financial and emotional support and we stopped at his place in Maryland overnight. Armed with an Ashe return address, I had written several hundred letters (yes!) on a yellow pad on my knees in the front seat while Cheryl drove, and Mike arranged for a nearby university used-to-weird-hours thesis typist to type them all overnight; we mailed them April 2 and drove on. We were headed to my parents’ (retired librarians) house in Charlottesville, with me again writing several hundred short letters on my lap. We had arranged for a similar heroic overnight typing fest (the two days: 905 letters to all the authors I had addresses for, saying my former employer will take good care of you, they’re wonderful publishers—But if by any chance they turn you down for something, give us a shot!).
The U-Haul was too much for the Bug and our left rear wheel came OFF 20 miles north of Charlottesville—but stayed in the wheel well (having nowhere else to go), behaving violently. Definitely exciting (it was my stint at the wheel). We lost two or three days; I split logs for my parents’ fireplace.
In Ashe County finally, we scooped up some reply mail from authors. Already! And we soon secured a sweet farmhouse in Dillard Holler (landlord Jesse Dillard; Mom-figure Clyde Dillard; horse-plus-himself quarter-acre-garden plower Jones Dillard). The Dillard families taught us a great deal about what being “conservative” actually means. (One day Jesse turned up with several hundred fence rails he stored near “our” (his) house; no immediate need, but “I got ’em for 25¢ each.” They stayed stacked for years…) The birth of our sons Charles (in ’81), Nicholas (’85) and William (’89) certainly emphasized the Dillards’ lessons. (Jesse routinely tossed hay bales up into pickup trucks in his 80’s. Lemme be him!)
McFarland itself started out next to the H & R Block office, near the florist, in Jefferson, a small space but enough for our first couple of years. The Jefferson Post Office turned out, under our loyal friend Charles Caudill, to be one of our greatest early assets. He was so supportive as McF struggled through ignorance of mass mailings, foreign registered packages (we learned together!), “library rate” book mailings, etc. McFarland moved in 1981 or ’82 to the Mountain View shopping center between the towns and quickly expanded there. In 1982 we lucked out by having Rhonda Herman agree to join the tiny staff, doing all the “business” stuff while I coddled authors, edited manuscripts and coached the typesetters. High school senior Cynthia Campbell became a stalwart and sixteen year old Cherie Scott was a wow of a typesetter, along with Katy Taylor, on our new typesetting equipment. Within three years we were producing 40 or so new books a year (in 2018 the total was nearly 400).
Meanwhile, the people of Ashe County all around us showed interest, great surprise (“A Publisher in Ashe County?” read one huge Jefferson Times headline), and affection. Highly significant was Hal Colvard, repeatedly trusting us, at Northwestern bank, another wonderful early friend of McFar. We warmly greeted each other on Saturday mornings at the post office for many years after he retired.
By 1984 we’d moved to our present location, which became five buildings on both sides of the road. We’re technically inside Jefferson town limits. We took Mackey McDonald’s trim brick ranch house, whacked walls left and right, pushed out here, there… Years later we added a second floor – my joke is, the main building now has more roof lines than an Italian hill village.
We are, or were, a library-oriented scholarly and reference book publisher. (We’ve grown much more into a straight-to-people operation today but libraries are still a critical component of our efforts.) Two of our earliest works were Library Display Ideas by my sister Linda Franklin and Free Magazines for Libraries, by Adeline Mercer Smith: they were terrific sales successes. Another 1982 biggie was Anabolic Steroids and the Athlete by William M. Taylor, M.D. We hit that topic just as it exploded nationwide. One of the most memorable early works was Keep Watching the Skies! by Bill Warren (1982). This huge book expertly, humorously covers in amazing depth every American science fiction movie of the 1950s and a lot of Hollywood Big Names spoke highly of it in print. We were famous! (Well, the author was…)
McFarland was an early strong supporter of the local arts scene. (There are hundreds of paintings hanging in four of our buildings.) Cheryl Roberts and I founded the publication ARTS/DATES for the Arts Council in 1980 or 1981, and for more than a decade paid all its expenses as it grew grander and ever more useful. Loyal Jane Lonon (Arts Council head) wangled twice for us an N.C. Governor’s Business Award for the Arts and Humanities (go to Raleigh; shake hands; pose for photos; eat dinner).
I joined the strong, active Ashe County Little Theatre and played Dracula for them in 1981, sporting fangs crafted by the late Brett Summey, who became a good friend, now truly missed. Jane Lonon and I wowed the crowd in The King and I and Tom Fowler and I rolled them in the aisles in Greater Tuna. When I played Macbeth, the high school English teacher promised extra credit to student attendees.
McFarland’s output grew rapidly—by the 1990s we were producing hundreds of new titles each year and our staff had doubled, then tripled in size. Margie Turnmire had arrived in the mid–’80s, a beautiful soul and a very smart lady: director of finance and administration. In 1995 the Ashe County Chamber of Commerce honored us with a Business of the Year award (I believe we were the third such) and in 1998 The Wall Street Journal ran a feature article on us, showing that we are a bit unusual in our range of offerings. We have a commanding position in, for example, Vietnam combat memoirs, chess history, baseball (teams, eras, bios), automotive history and popular culture (film, TV, comics, literature…). We’ve done many reference books (though with Wiki-Google etc. now such works are uneconomical to produce); a Library Journal book of the year was local John Stewart’s African States and Rulers in 1989. Lots of Civil War, World War II, American/European/World history, literary criticism. Authors from all over the world. That part’s fun! As I write this we have published 7,800 titles.
We had busted out of our onsite warehouse and used the old Ashe County Jail on Buffalo Road for several years in the 80s! Ultimately we had to move our shipping operation into the building next to the Arts Council owned by Jim Reeves. On its outer wall facing the Arts Center we had Jack Young do the town’s first mural (now painted over): “Ashe County through the Ages.” Finally, Mike Herman built us an entirely new warehouse across the road from our main building in about 1990. Fourteen years later, then-vice-president Rhonda Herman (now president) moved the company onto firmer financial footing by arranging to install state-of-the-art printing equipment in that warehouse (we’d always used out-of-house printing firms).
Cheryl and I love Ashe County. We love the people. We love the trees, the river. (We came in first in the Mixed Expert class canoe race four or five years ago!) I even like the curves driving 23 miles to and fro our home to work (we live practically on the Tennessee line, up in the Flatwoods). The finger salute still works and the tire zing helps me think through business challenges. Our three boys, Charles, Nicky and William, also revere their place of birth. McFarland has about 50 employees, all of whom are exceptionally talented. When I got here to start the company, I truly had my pick of some of the best talent available anywhere, and I mean Anywhere. Our typesetters know every Hungarian or Swedish accent mark there is!
The local merchants have become business partners. Local artists have paintings hanging in our offices. The restaurants are great for business lunches. The weather—sublime (I learned to fell trees and the art of minimizing the lifting and stacking of logs our first year here); I like winter! Mike Herman built our house and the numerous renovations of our current space—impossible to imagine a better job. Stan Barker did some fabulous stone walls at our home. I feel both cozy and exhilarated just getting up in the morning! Ashe County, we’re for you!
McFarland is having an open house (snacks, drinks, tours) starting at noon on Friday, June 14th. We want to show our thanks to a community that has nurtured us for 40 years. Come one, come all!
Charles “Jerry” Juroe, who ran publicity on 14 James Bond movies, starting with Dr. No in 1962, will be awarded France’s prestigious Legion of Honor award for excellence in military conduct on June 6th, 2019 during D-Day Celebrations in Normandy. Juroe, 96, was part of the historic invasion on June 6th, 1944. After his WWII service, Juroe had a long career in the film industry, starting out as a publicist for Paramount Pictures, then serving as the personal publicist for stars like Bob Hope, Bing Crosby and Marilyn Monroe when she was filming The Prince And The Showgirl in England. Jerry was based in Europe for many years, working for every major studio. He worked with The Beatles on their UA movies, A Hard Day’s Night and Help!, but is best known for his association with the Bond films and his fruitful working relationship with legendary producer, Albert “Cubby” Broccoli. In 2018, he published his memoir, Bond, the Beatles and My Year with Marilyn: 50 Years as a Movie Marketing Man.
The Star Gate Archives: Reports of the United States Government Sponsored Psi Program, 1972–1995. Volume 4: Operational Remote Viewing: Memorandums and Reports
Compiled and Edited by Edwin C. May and Sonali Bhatt Marwaha
During the Cold War, the U.S. government began testing paranormal claims under laboratory conditions in hopes of realizing intelligence applications for psychic phenomena. Thus began the project known as Star Gate––the largest in the history of parapsychological research, it received more than $20 million in funding and continued into the mid–1990s. This project archive includes all available documents generated by research contractor SRI International, and those provided by government officials.
Volume 4 focuses on selections from a vast body of U.S. Government documents that present a multifaceted view of its support of Star Gate. These materials show that the project was briefed to the President, Vice President, agency directors and Secretaries of the Armed Services, and other senior officials. The fact that the program ran for so many years, and that there were many returning end users, is offered as evidence of the utility of psi, and hence of its very existence.
For more than a century, the U.S. Navy’s battleships, cruisers, destroyers, submarines and amphibious warfare vessels have depended on a small group of specialized auxiliary ships to provide fuel, food, ammunition, parts and other material support and services. Without these workhorse vessels, the U.S. Fleet could not have won in World War II and it could not today deploy and remain on station in the far distant waters of the world.
This book provides the rosters, histories, specifications and illustrations of 130 different auxiliary ship types in the last 100 years, including the little-known ones, the latest expeditionary fast transports and future towing, salvage and rescue ships.
Organized in the fall of 1862, the 125th Ohio Volunteer Infantry was commanded by the aggressive and ambitious Colonel Emerson Opdycke, a citizen-soldier with no military experience who rose to brevet major general.
Part of the Army of the Cumberland, the 125th first saw combat at Chickamauga. Charging into Dyer’s cornfield to blunt a rebel breakthrough, the Buckeyes pressed forward and, despite heavy casualties, drove the enemy back, buying time for the fractured Union army to rally. Impressed by the heroic charge of an untested regiment, Union General Thomas Wood labeled them “Opdycke’s Tigers.”
After losing a third of their men at Chickamauga, the 125th fought engagements across Tennessee and Georgia during 1864, and took part in the decisive battles at Franklin and Nashville.
Drawing on both primary sources and recent scholarship, this is the first full-length history of the regiment in more than 120 years.
The German Failure in Belgium, August 1914: How Faulty Reconnaissance Exposed the Weakness of the Schlieffen Plan
Dennis Showalter, Joseph P. Robinson and Janet A. Robinson
If wars were wagered on like pro sports or horse races, the Germany military in August 1914 would have been a clear front-runner, with a century-long record of impressive victories and a general staff the envy of its rivals. Germany’s overall failure in the first year of World War I was surprising and remains a frequent subject of analysis, mostly focused on deficiencies in strategy and policy.
But there were institutional weaknesses as well. This book examines the structural failures that frustrated the Germans in the war’s crucial initial campaign, the invasion of Belgium. Too much routine in planning, command and execution led to groupthink, inflexibility and to an overconfident belief that nothing could go too terribly wrong. As a result, decisive operation became dicey, with consequences that Germany’s military could not overcome in four long years.
The Civil War from Its Origins to Reconstruction
James S. Pula
The period of Sectionalism, Civil War and Reconstruction was the most traumatic in American history. The outcome changed the foundations of the nation, with effects still felt today. While most Civil War histories focus on specific topics―military history, economics, politics―this book presents the narrative as it unfolded against a broader historical background. Drawing on direct quotations from actual participants, the author provides an interpretive overview of the issues and events that divided and then devastated the United States.
British Blockade Runners in the American Civil War
Perhaps more than all the campaigns of the Union armies, the Union naval blockade—covering all major Southern ports along 3,500 miles of coastline for the duration of the war—brought down the Confederacy. The daring exploits of Confederate blockade runners are well known—but many of them were British citizens operating out of neutral ports such as Nassau, Havana and Bermuda.
Focusing on British involvement in the war, this history names the overseas bankers and manufacturers who, in critical need of cotton and other Confederate exports, financed and equipped the fast little ships that ran the blockade. The author attempts to disentangle the names and aliases of the captains—many of whom were Royal Navy officers on temporary leave—and tells their stories in their own words.
The Star Gate Archives: Reports of the United States Government Sponsored Psi Program, 1972–1995. Volume 3: Psychokinesis
Compiled and Edited by Edwin C. May and Sonali Bhatt Marwaha
Star Gate is the largest funded program in the history of psi research receiving about $19.933 million in funding from 1972 to 1995. Researchers from SRI International, and later at Science Applications International Corporation, in association with various U.S. intelligence agencies participated in this program.
Using the remote viewing method, research focused on understanding the applicability and nature of psi in general but mostly upon informational psi. Volume 1: Remote Viewing (1972–1984) and Volume 2: Remote Viewing (1985–1995) include all aspects of RV including laboratory trials and several operational results. Volume 3: Psychokinesis focuses on laboratory investigations. Volume 4: Operational Remote Viewing: Government Memorandums and Reports includes an analysis of the applied remote viewing program and a selection of documents that provide a narrative on the behind the scenes activities of Star Gate.
In a total of 504 separate missions from 1972 to 1995, remote viewing produced actionable intelligence prompting 89 percent of the customers to return with additional missions. The Star Gate data indicate that informational psi is a valid phenomenon. These data have led to the development of a physics and neuroscience based testable model for the underlying mechanism, which considers informational psi as a normal, albeit atypical, phenomenon.
The Star Gate data found insufficient evidence to support the causal psi (psychokinesis) hypothesis.
Alert America!: The Atomic Bomb and “The Show That May Save Your Life”
To address the threat of an atomic-armed Soviet Union during the early days of the Cold War, President Harry Truman approved the Alert America exhibit as the most effective way to convey the destructive power of the atomic bomb and to encourage participation in civil defense. Following its debut in the nation’s capital in January 1952, Alert America, promoted as “The Show That May Save Your Life,” traveled in three separate convoys to more than eighty cities considered most likely to be bombed, and garnered unprecedented support from elected and civic officials, the media, the military, private industry, and myriad organizations. This is the first book to examine the scope and impact of Alert America, which has been largely overlooked by historians. Also included are resource materials providing insights into the government’s overriding objective of preparing men, women and children to survive an atomic war.
When the Americans invaded the Japanese-controlled islands of Saipan and Tinian in 1944, civilians and combatants committed mass suicide to avoid being captured. Though these mass suicides have been mentioned in documentary films, they have received scant scholarly attention. This book draws on United States National Archives documents and photographs, as well as veteran and survivor testimonies, to provide readers with a better understanding of what happened on the two islands and why. The author details the experiences of the people of the islands from prehistoric times to the present, with an emphasis on the Japanese, Okinawan, Korean, Chamorro and Carolinian civilians during invasion and occupation.
From 1915 through the early 1920s, American auto racing experienced rapid and exciting change. Competition by European vehicles forced American car manufacturers to incorporate new features, resulting in legendary engineering triumphs (and, essentially, works of art). Some of the greatest drivers in racing history were active during this time—Ralph DePalma, Dario Resta, Eddie Rickenbacker, the Chevrolet brothers, Jimmy Murphy.
Presenting dozens of races in detail and a wealth of engineering specs, this history recalls the era’s cigar-shaped speedway specials and monumental board tracks, the heavy-footed drivers, fearless mechanics, gifted engineers and enthusiastic backers.
General George Armstrong Custer and his wife, Libbie Custer, were wholehearted dog lovers. At the time of his death at Little Bighorn, they owned a rollicking pack of 40 hunting dogs, including Scottish Deerhounds, Russian Wolfhounds, Greyhounds and Foxhounds. Told from a dog owner’s perspective, this biography covers their first dogs during the Civil War and in Texas; hunting on the Kansas and Dakota frontiers; entertaining tourist buffalo hunters, including a Russian Archduke, English aristocrats and P. T. Barnum (all of whom presented the general with hounds); Custer’s attack on the Washita village (when he was accused of strangling his own dogs); and the 7th Cavalry’s march to Little Bighorn with an analysis of rumors about a Last Stand dog. The Custers’ pack was re-homed after his death in the first national dog rescue effort. Well illustrated, the book includes an appendix giving depictions of the Custers’ dogs in art, literature and film.
Longstreet at Gettysburg: A Critical Reassessment
Cory M. Pfarr
This is the first book-length, critical analysis of Lieutenant General James Longstreet’s actions at the Battle of Gettysburg. The author argues that Longstreet’s record has been discredited unfairly, beginning with character assassination by his contemporaries after the war and, persistently, by historians in the decades since. By closely studying the three-day battle, and conducting an incisive historiographical inquiry into Longstreet’s treatment by scholars, this book presents an alternative view of Longstreet as an effective military leader, and refutes over a century of negative evaluations of his performance.
It was not Robert Oppenheimer who built the bomb—it was engineers, chemists and young physicists in their twenties, many not yet having earned a degree. The first atomic bomb was originally conceived as a backup device, a weapon not then currently achievable. The remote Trinity Site—the birthplace of the bomb—was used as a test range for U.S. bombers before the first nuclear device was secretly detonated. After the blast, locals speculated that the flash and rumble were caused by colliding B-29s, while Manhattan Project officials nervously measured high levels of offsite radiation.
Drawing on original documents, many recently declassified, the author sheds new light on a pivotal moment in history—now approaching its 75th anniversary—told from the point of view of the men who inaugurated the Atomic Age in the New Mexico desert.
Terrorism Worldwide, 2018
This comprehensive worldwide study catalogs terrorist attacks in 2018, during which the Islamic State continued its decline from a quasi-government commanding territory the size of the United Kingdom to a more traditional terrorist network controlling just 1000 square miles. Yet IS still boasts 30,000 adherents in Syria and Iraq, with many others awaiting plans for attacks in their home nations. Organized by region and country, this volume covers domestic and international incidents around the world, outlining significant trends. The author offers several indicators of what to watch in the coming years. The single-year format allows readers access to the most up-to-date information on terrorism, while geographic focus more easily facilitates regional comparison.
Defeat was looming for the South—as the Civil War continued, paths to possible victory were fast disappearing. Dr. Luke Pryor Blackburn, a Confederate physician and expert in infectious diseases, had an idea that might turn the tide: he would risk his own life and career to bring a yellow fever epidemic to the North. To carry out his mission, he would need some accomplices. Tracing the plans and movements of the conspirators, this thoroughly researched history describes in detail the yellow fever plot of 1864–1865.
Confederate Ironclads at War
R. Thomas Campbell
Hampered by lack of materials, shipyards and experienced shipbuilders, even so the South managed to construct 34 iron-armored warships during the Civil War, of which the Confederate Navy put 25 into service. The stories of these vessels illustrate the hardships under which the Navy operated—and also its resourcefulness. Except for the Albemarle, no Confederate ironclad was sunk or destroyed by enemy action. Overtaken by events on the ground, most were destroyed by their own crews to prevent them from falling into Union hands.
This account covers the design and construction and the engagements of the Confederate ironclads and describes the ingenuity and courage, as well as the challenges and frustrations of their “too little, too late” service.
Abbott and Costello on the Home Front: A Critical Study of the Wartime Films
Scott Allen Nollen
As two of the most popular entertainers of the mid-century film industry, comic greats Bud Abbott and Lou Costello offered an essential balm to the American public following the sorrows of the Great Depression and during the trauma of World War II. This is the first book to focus in detail on the immensely popular wartime films of Abbott and Costello, discussing the production, content, and reception of 18 films within the context of wartime events on the home front and abroad. The films covered include the service comedies Buck Privates, In the Navy, and Keep ’Em Flying; more mainstream comic relief films such as Pardon My Sarong and Who Done It?; and post-war experiments such as Little Giant and The Time of Their Lives. More than 120 stills and lobby cards from the author’s personal collection illustrate the text, including many showing outtakes or deleted scenes.
The Texas Rangers: A Registry and History
Darren L. Ivey
The Texas Ranger law enforcement agency features so prominently in Texan and Wild West folklore that its accomplishments have been featured in everything from pulp novels to popular television. After a brief overview of the Texas Rangers’ formation, this book provides an exhaustive account of every known Ranger unit from 1823 to the present. Each chapter provides a brief contextual explanation of the time period covered and features entries on each unit’s commanders, periods of service, activities, and supervising authorities. Appendices include an account of the Rangers’ battle record, a history of the illustrious badge, documents relating to the Rangers, and lists of Rangers who have died in service, been inducted into the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame, or received the Texas Department of Public Safety’s Medal of Valor.
The award of a military decoration does not define valor—it only recognizes it. Many acts of notable courage and self-sacrifice occur on the battlefield but are often obscured in the fog of battle or lost to history, unrecognized and unheralded.
The largely overlooked men and women in this volume did incredible things in dire circumstances. Although in some cases decorations were awarded—including several Medals of Honor—their stories remain unknown.
McFarland’s biographies and memoirs cover the fascinating life stories of both iconic personalities and quiet heroes. On sale now, browse hundreds of titles from history, sports, movies, music, science & technology, literature, military history, transportation and more. When you order direct from our website using the coupon code BIOGRAPHY, print editions of all biographies, autobiographies and memoirs are 20% off now through February 15.
This naval history of the Delaware Estuary spans three centuries, from the arrival of the Europeans to the end of the World War II. The author describes the shipbuilders and infrastructure, and the ships and men who sailed this surprisingly active waterway in peace and in war. From Philadelphia to the Delaware Capes, the story of the nascent U.S. Navy and key historical figures emerges. Dozens of historic images and four appendices are included.
A Burned Land: The Trans-Mississippi in the Civil War
Robert R. Laven
Often neglected by historians, actions in Missouri and Kansas had an important influence on the course of the Civil War, with profound effects for the communities and people in the region. Outside of Virginia and Tennessee, Missouri was perhaps the most hotly contested territory during the war. The fighting in Missouri culminated with an expedition that re-wrote the books on tactics and the use of mounted infantry.
This book focuses on the experiences of the soldiers, officers and civilians on both sides. The author brings to life the events in the region that contributed to the internecine strife in the Western Theater.
In the summer of 1862, two great armies met outside of Richmond in a series of battles that would determine the course of the Civil War. The Union had time, men and materiel on its side, while the Confederates had mobility, esprit de corps and aggressive leadership. Untried General Robert E. Lee was tasked with driving the Yankees from their almost impregnable positions to save Richmond and end the war.
Lee planned to isolate part of the Union Army, crush it, and then destroy the only supply base the remaining Federals had. To do so, he had to move thousands of troops hundreds of miles, bringing multiple forces together with intricate timing, all without the Yankees or their spies finding out. The largest and most important of these battles occurred at Gaines’ Mill.
The 22nd Michigan Infantry and the Road to Chickamauga
Called upon to take a hill at the 1863 Battle of Chickamauga, the untested 22nd Michigan Infantry helped to save General George H. Thomas’ right flank. Formed in 1862, the regiment witnessed slavery and encountered runaways in the border state of Kentucky, faced near starvation during the siege of Chattanooga and marched to Atlanta as General Thomas’ provost guard.
This history explores the 22nd’s day-to-day experiences in Kentucky, Tennessee and Georgia. The author describes the challenges faced by volunteer farm boys, shopkeepers, school teachers and lawyers as they faced death, disease and starvation on battlefields and in Confederate prisons.
America’s “Foreign Legion”: Immigrant Soldiers in the Great War
Dennis A. Connole
Immigrant American soldiers played an important, often underrated role in World War I. Those who were non-citizens had no obligation to participate in the war, though many volunteered. Due to language barriers that prevented them from receiving proper training, they were often given the most dangerous and dirty jobs.
The impetus for this book was the story of Matthew Guerra (the author’s great-uncle). He immigrated to America from Italy around age 12. He was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1918 and shipped to France, where he joined the 58th Infantry Regiment of the 4th “Ivy” Division and participated in the St. Mihiel and Meuse-Argonne offensives. Wounded in the Bois de Fays, the 22-year-old Guerra died in a field hospital.
African Americans and American Indians in the Revolutionary War
Jack Darrell Crowder
At the time of the Revolutionary War, a fifth of the Colonial population was African American. By 1779, 15 percent of the Continental Army were former slaves, while the Navy recruited both free men and slaves. More than 5000 black Americans fought for independence in an integrated military—it would be the last until the Korean War.
The majority of Indian tribes sided with the British yet some Native Americans rallied to the American cause and suffered heavy losses. Of 26 Wampanoag enlistees from the small town of Mashpee on Cape Cod, only one came home. Half of the Pequots who went to war did not survive. Mohegans John and Samuel Ashbow fought at Bunker Hill. Samuel was killed there—the first Native American to die in the Revolution.
This history recounts the sacrifices made by forgotten people of color to gain independence for the people who enslaved and extirpated them.
Abandoned Shipmate: The Destruction of Coast Guard Captain Ernie Blanchard
Ladson F. Mills, III
Captain Ernie Blanchard left for work January 10, 1995, a successful officer. Respected by superiors and subordinates, his personal and professional values seemed perfectly aligned with the institution he served, the United States Coast Guard. By day’s end his career was finished.
At a speaking engagement at the Coast Guard Academy, Blanchard’s icebreaker—a series of time-tested corny jokes—was met with silence. Within hours, an investigation was underway into whether his remarks constituted sexual harassment. Several weeks later, threatened with a court-martial, he shot himself.
The author investigates Blanchard’s “death by political correctness” in the context of the turmoil surrounding the U.S. Armed Forces’ gender inclusion struggles from the 1980s to the present.
The Vermont Brigade, sometimes referred to as the “First Vermont Brigade” or the “Old Brigade,” fought its first full-brigade engagement in the Seven Days’ battles. The leaders, as well as the rank and file, were inexperienced in warfare, but through sheer grit and determination they made a name for themselves as one of the hardest-fighting units in the Army of the Potomac.
Using soldiers’ letters, diaries, and service and pension records, this book gives a soldier’s-eye-view of the Virginia summer heat, days of marching with very little rest or nourishment, and the fear and exhilaration of combat. Also included are the stories of 29 men that were wounded or killed and how the tragedies affected their families.
For President Lyndon Johnson, 1968 was a year of calamity, including the hijacking of the USS Puebloin international waters off North Korea. After a fierce attack by the North Korean Navy, the lightly armed spy ship was captured and its 83 crewmen taken hostage, imprisoned and tortured for nearly a year before being released.
How and why did the Navy, the National Security Agency and the Johnson administration place the Pueblo in such an untenable situation? What drove Kim Il-sung, North Korea’s autocrat, to gamble on hijacking a ship belonging to the world’s most powerful nation?
Drawing on extensive research, including summaries of White House meetings and conversations, the author answers these questions and reviews the events and flawed decisions that led to Pueblo’s capture.
Mid-flight noncombat mishaps and blunders occur frequently in the USAF during training and utility flights—sometimes with the loss of life and regularly with the destruction of expensive aircraft. In one extreme case, a $2.2 billion B-2 Spirit bomber crashed soon after takeoff and was destroyed.
The events surrounding such accidents are gathered by USAF investigators and a report is published for each case. The author has collected these reports, including some made available following FOI (Freedom of Information) requests to U.S. air bases, and rewritten them in language accessible to the general public.
The causes—bird-strikes, joy-riding, unauthorized maneuvers, pilot disorientation, an unseen binoculars-case blocking the plane’s joystick, unexpected moisture in an air-pressure gauge—are often surprising and, at times, horrifying.
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Through a reliance on nuclear weapons, President Eisenhower hoped to provide a defense strategy that would allow the U.S. to maintain its security requirements without creating an economic burden. This defense strategy, known as the New Look, benefited the U.S. Air Force with its focus on strategic bombing. The U.S. also required European missile bases to deploy its intermediate range ballistic missiles, while efforts continued to develop U.S. based intercontinental ballistic missiles.
Deploying such missiles to Europe required balancing regional European concerns with U.S. domestic security priorities. In the wake of the Soviet Sputnik launch in 1957, the U.S. began to fear Soviet missile capabilities. Using European missile bases would mitigate this domestic security issue, but convincing NATO allies to base the missiles in their countries raised issues of sovereignty and weapons control and ran the risk of creating divisions in the NATO alliance.
Between 1817 and 1864, sixteen officers were assigned as Commandants of Cadets at the U.S. Military Academy. They played an important role in training the officers who would serve on both sides of the Civil War.
Historians criticize the program as antiquated for its time: A course in Napoleonic strategy and tactics that did not account for rifled weapons or the particularities of terrain. Yet these commandants made changes to the program, developed new textbooks and instructed cadets who became field generals.
The biographies of the commandants are presented along with their contributions to the Academy, notable graduates and other military service.
Robert A. Lovett and the Development of American Air Power
David M. Jordan
Robert Lovett grew up in Texas, went to Yale, and earned his wings as a naval air force hero in World War I. He played a key role in the development of the Army Air Force in World War II. His emphasis on strategic bombing was instrumental in defeating Hitler’s Germany.
During his postwar State Department service, he was influential in initiating the Marshall Plan, the formation of NATO and planning the Berlin Airlift. He served as Truman’s Secretary of Defense during the Korean War, was a consultant for his friend Dwight Eisenhower and served John F. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Between tours of duty in Washington, he was an international banker on Wall Street. This first complete biography covers his life and career in detail.
The U.S. Army 7708 War Crimes Group investigated atrocities committed in Germany and Nazi-occupied Europe during World War II. These young Americans—many barely out of their teens—gathered evidence, interviewed witnesses, apprehended suspects and prosecuted defendants at trials held at Dachau. Their work often put them in harm’s way—some suspects facing arrest preferred to shoot it out.
The War Crimes Group successfully prosecuted the perpetrators of the Malmedy Massacre, in which 84 American prisoners of war were shot by their German captors; and Waffen-SS commando Otto Skorzeny, aptly described as “the most dangerous man in Europe.” Operation Paperclip, however, placed some war criminals—scientists and engineers recruited by the U.S. government—beyond their reach. From the ruins of the Third Reich arose a Nazi underground that preyed on Americans—especially members of the Group.
World War I began in August 1914—the United States did not enter the conflict until April 1917. During those nearly three years of neutrality, a small number of Americans did experience the horrors of the war zones of Europe. Some ran for their lives as refugees while others, like journalists and doctors, headed toward the fighting. Missionaries in Persia (Iran) and the Ottoman Empire became witnesses to both the Armenian genocide and the persecution of Assyrian Christians. This history focuses on the war from the perspective of ordinary people who found themselves in the midst of what was then the most destructive and bloody war in history.
The holidays are a special time at McFarland—in addition to publishing scholarship, many of us also participate in the tree harvest, as Ashe County produces more Christmas trees than any other county in the United States. If you live in the Southeast, you may have a little bit of McFarland in your living room right now! This season, please consider putting some McFarland under the tree for the readers in your life. To make your holiday shopping easier, we’re offering 25% off of ALL books through the end of the year! On our website, use coupon code HOLIDAY18, or call us at 800-253-2187. For inspiration, browse our new catalog of of gift ideas for readers. Happy holidays from your friends at McFarland!