Jump to content

Feedback requested - Purple Heart Book - have I left anything out?


Recommended Posts

So I have to submit my book on posthumous Purple Hearts of WW2 to the publisher next week. In between now and then, I'm working on smoothing and editing...but need to know if there's anything I've left out that would avoid the "hey, this is a great book...but..." comments.

 

The constraints I'm working with is keeping the book under 300 pages, having it a single volume, and keeping it at 800 photos. Well, I'm at 1,370 photos, so hopefully my publisher won't freak out. I hope it can be under 300 pages, so I've kept the writing to the bare minimum. (I photographed 1,400 Purple Hearts for both volumes...and have about 30,000 photos of both medals as well as documents, etc...sadly, they can't all go in the book!)

 

The direction I've taken for the book is to do two things: 1. educate people that there were actually PEOPLE who earned the posthumous Purple Hearts (they weren't just medals that happened to have a name issued on the reverse) and 2. educate people about the actual medal itself. To that end, I've included 320 Purple Hearts, where I've written short biographies of the recipients and included, wherever possible, photos of the recipient. I've also included, wherever possible, the other awards they received (not campaign medals, but actual valor awards) ranging from the Medal of Honor (I have representations from the Navy, Army, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard...no AAF ones, sadly) to many Navy Crosses, Distinguished Service Crosses, Bronze and Silver Stars, etc.

 

I've also included, when possible, Purple Heart certificates, from all branches of the service, to include the Coast Guard and the Public Health Service (I never found a complete medal and document group to a civilian, so that's not in there). On the topic of paperwork, I've include notification telegrams, from missing in action to killed in action, from all branches of the service. The same goes for a representative sampling of documentation for the delivery and receipt of the medals themselves (but not overkill on documents as they take up room in the book...and room is something I don't have enough of!)

 

For the dog tag collectors, I've included several dog tags that were used for grave markers as well as were sent back with the coffins in 1948 (I saved a lot of those for Volume 2, as I have photos of them in use in that volume).

 

In addition to the biographies and medals and documents and photos, I've included original (most never seen before) photos of people in action in the different theaters of war to convey what these guys were going through when they were killed.

 

As if 320 Purple Hearts from all branches of the service weren't enough, I've also included an additional ~300 that are without biographies in a single appendix (some are from earlier in the book, admittedly), where people can refer to them to compare a medal for originality. In this appendix I also cover the four different types of observed Purple Hearts to the Navy, the three to the Marine Corps, and the ones to the Coast Guard and Army. Similarly, I also cover five different Navy engraving styles, three different Marine Corps engraving styles, and the four different Army engraving styles. Same goes for different examples of brooches. I also have a few posthumous medals represented for WW1, as well as posthumous accolades from the US and from France.

 

I also include a small discussion about Purple Heart numbers...though really there's not much to say there.

 

I have also included a few examples of privately and officially WIA awards, from WW1 through WW2. I also show a handful of examples of fake awards. I'd like to show more of those, but unfortunately, those are apparently hard to find in most collections (or that people are willing to cough up!) :D I have quite a few photos of them, actually, but they are off of websites and eBay, and I can't put those in the book without permission.

 

Things that are not in this book are awards to families (multiple siblings killed), awards to people who died as POWs, Purple Hearts (no docs, unfortunately) to civilians, and an entire photographic section on Graves Registration duties...those will all be in Volume 2, along with Purple Hearts from Korea through the GWOT. I simply do not have the room in volume 1 to include them all, as much as that sucks (I did include one group to brothers in volume 1 but that's because they're pretty much the most famous out there and I wanted to include them...so did the family...so...)

 

So...my question is...while I have a week to wrap this up, is there anything I'm neglecting to include? There could easily be something out there that is totally slipping my mind, as I'm pretty much entirely focused on what I've been working on currently and my "creative side" has pretty much gone out the window at the moment. I've got a week, and working 19 hours a day, plenty of time to get this squared away if I need to!

 

Thanks for reading-

 

Dave

Only a weak society needs government protection or intervention before it pursues its resolve to preserve the truth. Truth needs neither handcuffs nor a badge for its vindication. -Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy

Peace is not the absence of war, but the defense of hard-won freedom. -Anton LaGuardia


donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave,

 

sounds like a great book! I'm eagerly waiting for it to come out. Thank you for all the research, time, and effort you've put into this daunting project. I don't see anything obvious that you've missed.

 

Well done!

 

Geoff

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm offended that you would take pictures and write about medals that are so precious. (KIdding!)

 

Seriously, it sounds like a great book. I'll look forward to seeing it.

donation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

 

 

Always interested in the 166th Infantry, 42nd Division, A.E.F.

Quality WW1 studio portraits and real photo postcards of Distinguished Service Cross recipients; showing steel helmets; or other interesting content.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your input, guys! I will definitely keep people informed as to the availability. I'll admit I was pretty happy about my last book because it not just looked good, but also told an untold story. However, going into it, I knew it was very "niche" and really not for a broad audience. I think this one is not just as good (I think it's even better) but it will appeal to not just historians and collectors, but to a much broader range of people. At least that's what I'm hoping. :D

Only a weak society needs government protection or intervention before it pursues its resolve to preserve the truth. Truth needs neither handcuffs nor a badge for its vindication. -Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy

Peace is not the absence of war, but the defense of hard-won freedom. -Anton LaGuardia


donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm going to say what everyone is thinking: " Just be certain that one of MY Purple Hearts appears in the book ". ;):D

 

 

 

 

Wharf

In Peace and War, US Merchant Marine. WARNING: Dangerous Cargo. No Visitors, No Smoking, No Open Lights.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm going to say what everyone is thinking: " Just be certain that one of MY Purple Hearts appears in the book ".

 

 

 

 

Wharf

 

 

:D

 

I think I've done a pretty good job of including examples from everyone I visited. One of the major collectors I visited put it well: "You don't want to photograph everything in my collection, as you'll then just have to call the book 'The Purple Hearts of so-and-so's collection'!" So I put in examples from many sources. I did leave out some "super" Purple Hearts so I could include ones that had more poignant material with them. I know some folks might think I'm nuts, but I did not include all of the FSSF, 2nd Ranger, and 506th PIR D-Day Purple Hearts I photographed. Yes, those are great units, and their Purple Hearts are extremely desirable...but there were other people killed during the war, and it was only fair to include them too (yes, there are fifteen Purple Hearts from the USS Arizona represented...so I'm admittedly biased there, but whatever...) :D

Only a weak society needs government protection or intervention before it pursues its resolve to preserve the truth. Truth needs neither handcuffs nor a badge for its vindication. -Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy

Peace is not the absence of war, but the defense of hard-won freedom. -Anton LaGuardia


donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave,

 

I think you have covered it all! I know I, like everyone else on the forum, am looking forward to the publication of this tome!

 

Gary B

 

P.S. You probably do need to make a determination on how many books you will be publishing. I know for some of the recently published German medal books - 500 was the number.

ANA LM #1201868, OMSA LM #60, OVMS LM #8348

 

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2017.gifdonation2018.gif

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave,

 

I am new to the forum, but over the past few months have switched my collecting interests to named US medals, especially Purple Hearts. I am really looking forward to your book, as an internet search for other references came up blank.

 

As others have already mentioned/asked where & when will the book be available. If a pre-order list is being passed around sign me up!

 

-Doug

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks again guys! As far as when it will be out...probably late next year (hopefully!)

 

For unclegrumpy...you have a good point. One would hope, that in seeing around 600 good Purple Hearts, people might know what to look for! Thanks!

Only a weak society needs government protection or intervention before it pursues its resolve to preserve the truth. Truth needs neither handcuffs nor a badge for its vindication. -Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy

Peace is not the absence of war, but the defense of hard-won freedom. -Anton LaGuardia


donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

I also would drop the section on fakes to make room for more original material. The fakes change as techniques advance, but originals are always....well...original. I've always thought it best to show people what right looks like, then let them weed out the bad stuff. I also think the fakes should not be included alongside all of the originals. They detract from their significance IMO

I will pay top dollar for original WWII items pertaining to:

 

OSS

OSS Maritime Unit

NCDU

UDT

Scouts and Raiders

FSSF

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks again guys! As far as when it will be out...probably late next year (hopefully!)

 

For unclegrumpy...you have a good point. One would hope, that in seeing around 600 good Purple Hearts, people might know what to look for! Thanks!

Dave,

 

Like LBJ stated about the Tonkin Gulf Resolution, "like Grandma's nightshirt, it covers just about everything." I think that you have done the topic justice and welcome the opportunity to see the completed work.

 

Congrats,

 

Kurt

My hobby is my job and my job is my hobby. High School and University History Instructor

 

post-2-0-10415400-1477335312.jpg

donation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif



Link to post
Share on other sites

I Cant wait for this book. Will you have written information on the Purple Heart? It's history, award criteria, types, numbers awarded, types of engravings etc.

 

Nic

Wanted - WW2 Medals, Uniforms or Groupings to the 82nd Airborne Div

 

donation2011.gifdonation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave, I agree with the others regarding the fakes. Leave them out. We need to see and recognize the good ones.

 

Perhaps in a later volume. It's worth some space but not to much....

 

And .... Thanks for your great work and the time spent. Please write me down for a copy of all volumes.

 

Regards

Herman

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 year later...

Updates ?

 

 

 

Wharf

 

 

Schiffer has had the completed book since December 14, 2016. They are sitting on it...so it will be on whatever timeline they are using to actually get it published.

 

Volume 2 is at a standstill because I have no interest in putting a bunch of effort into meeting a deadline...only to have them sit on the book to publish it at their convenience. Once Volume 1 is moving forward, I'll start working on Volume 2 again.

Only a weak society needs government protection or intervention before it pursues its resolve to preserve the truth. Truth needs neither handcuffs nor a badge for its vindication. -Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy

Peace is not the absence of war, but the defense of hard-won freedom. -Anton LaGuardia


donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave,

A Purple Heart was awarded for Ernie Pyle in about 1986 or so. I think a cousin received it as NOK, then I think he gave it to the museum. I do no know if it was engraved, of course it would not be the same as a WW II era heart, but is one given to a civilian. I was at the event when it was awarded in Dana, IN at his home town. There is a museum there that probably has it on display.

Might be interesting for Volume II.

BKW

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave,

A Purple Heart was awarded for Ernie Pyle in about 1986 or so. I think a cousin received it as NOK, then I think he gave it to the museum. I do no know if it was engraved, of course it would not be the same as a WW II era heart, but is one given to a civilian. I was at the event when it was awarded in Dana, IN at his home town. There is a museum there that probably has it on display.

Might be interesting for Volume II.

BKW

 

Most definitely! Was that the one on the cover of one of the JOMSA editions?

Only a weak society needs government protection or intervention before it pursues its resolve to preserve the truth. Truth needs neither handcuffs nor a badge for its vindication. -Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy

Peace is not the absence of war, but the defense of hard-won freedom. -Anton LaGuardia


donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

I do not know, the web site of the Ernie Pyle Museum has a photo of the front, but not the back. You could e-mail them with the question. It used to be owned and operated by the state, but cutbacks closed it. It was reopened by a not-for-profit organization now. Funny story I think you'll understand. The first time I visited it, probably about 1982-83, the curator/caretaker was showing me around, (I was the only visitor at the time) and I noticed several "problems" one was 1960's vintage web gear in one of the displays and another was on one of his uniforms, his War Correspondence insignia was on the wrong side. SO I asked her about it. She said she had purchased the web gear at a surplus store so there was some for a display (it was not claimed to have been his). And she said she had taken the patch off and sewn it on the other side so it would display better in the case. When she told me that my mouth dropped open and I think I said something like, "You can't do that!" As it turned out, I had actually purchased a pretty nice WW II pistol belt and a canteen cover earlier that day, so I gave them to her. She was a very sweet lady but did not know much about military history. On another visit, she had me go upstairs (where she lived) and showed me some artifacts that had just been donated by a relative of Pyle's. In the group was his Jeep Cap! Also his black crackle finish zippo lighter with "EP" scratched into it. Holding those artifacts was a great moment for me.

BKW

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.