Soldiers’ Stories Summary

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

What follows in this section is in many ways the most personal and satisfying collection of documents in the volume. Through diaries, letters, and other writings we learn about the daily lives of American troops in the field, whether it is those on the front lines during the heat of battle or those situated behind the lines in crucial support roles. We hear from airmen, expeditionary force members, artillery specialists, infantry troops, and a variety of other military and nonmilitary personnel. In a few cases we hear from outside observers on the scene. In most of the documents we discover that there is more to the daily lives of soldiers than fighting, and that, often, a kind of work routine sets in–however tenuous it may be. Thoughts of home are frequently paramount in the minds of the authors, although, obviously, those thoughts would tend to be magnified when one is writing home, which is the case with most of the letters included here.

What follows in this section is in many ways the most personal and satisfying collection of documents in the volume. Through diaries, letters, and other writings we learn about the daily lives of American troops in the field, whether it is those on the front lines during the heat of battle or those situated behind the lines in crucial support roles. We hear from airmen, expeditionary force members, artillery specialists, infantry troops, and a variety of other military and nonmilitary personnel. In a few cases we hear from outside observers on the scene. In most of the documents we discover that there is more to the daily lives of soldiers than fighting, and that, often, a kind of work routine sets in–however tenuous it may be. Thoughts of home are frequently paramount in the minds of the authors, although, obviously, those thoughts would tend to be magnified when one is writing home, which is the case with most of the letters included here.

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