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On the Western Front with the Rainbow Division
A World War I Diary
$29.95 Hardcover

An ordinary soldier’s day-by-day account of the Great War

Vernon E. Kniptash, an Indiana national guardsman who served in the Rainbow Division during World War I, observed firsthand some of the Great War’s fiercest fighting. As a radio operator with the Headquarters Company of the 150th Field Artillery, he was in constant contact with French and British forces as well as with American troops, and thus gained a broad perspective on the hostilities. Editor E. Bruce Geelhoed introduces and annotates Kniptash’s war diaries, published here for the first time.

With clarity and compelling detail, Kniptash describes the experiences of an ordinary soldier thrust into the most violent conflict the world had seen. He tells of his enthusiasm upon enlistment and of the horrors of combat that followed, as well as the drudgery of daily routine. He renders unforgettable profiles of his fellow soldiers and commanders, and manages despite the strains of warfare to leaven his writing with humor.

Readers will share Kniptash’s ordeals as he participates in the furious effort to stem a major German offensive, followed by six months of violent combat and the massive Allied counteroffensive that ended the war. Because Kniptash was called to remain with the Army of Occupation in Germany after his unit was shipped home, his diaries cover the full extent of American participation in the war.

About The Author

Vernon E. Kniptash was the grandson of German immigrants who—unlike most of their German American contemporaries—did not support Germany in the years before the Great War. After the Armistice, he returned to his job as a draftsman with an Indianapolis architectural firm.

E. Bruce Geelhoed, Professor of History at Ball State University, is coauthor (with Anthony O. Edmonds) of Eisenhower, Macmillan, and Allied Unity, 1957–1961 and coeditor (with Edmonds) of The Macmillan-EisenhowerCorrespondence, 1957–1969.
Book Information
22 b&w illus., 2 maps
256 Pages
Hardcover 978-0-8061-4032-2
Published April 2009