- Nancy Buck
On this day, we remember the sacrifice of soldiers in England, the United States, and France who fought and died in the Great War, the war to end all wars. While their noble goal is not yet realized, their noble deeds continue to be honored from the 1921 burial of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery to our daily remembrances of those who have been or are in the armed services. The VFW explains that the day was chosen to commemorate the ending of World War I at the eleventh hour on the eleventh day in the eleventh month in 1918.
Originally called Armistice Day, General Eisenhower asked that the scope of our commemoration be broadened to include veterans of all wars and, thus, the day is now called Veterans' Day. The Department of Veterans' Affairs offers a listing of DC area events this Veterans' Day as well as a look at their annual posters and other information about veterans.
The following is a a short list of books, music, and videos about World War I and World War II and those who fought in the first half of the last century.
World War I, 1914-1918
Blood and Mud: Trench Warfare in the West, 1914-1918, narrated by Robert Powell
Archival footage from the front lines of fortified battle trenches stretching from Switzerland to the North Sea.
Devil Dogs: Fighting Marines of World War I, by George B. Clark
The author not only looks at the Marines' most famous battle, Belleau Wood, but also examines less well-known confrontations at Soissons, Blanc Mont, Meuse River, Verdun, and St. Mihiel.
The Great War: Classical and Popular Selections from the Time of World War I
Includes familiar classical pieces of Strauss, Mahler, and Debussy as well as pop favorites like "Strike Up the Band," "Shine on Harvest Moon," and "How You Gonna Keep 'Em Down on the Farm?"
The Guns of August
Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Barbara Tuchman, the film uses documentary film stills and maps to describe the mishaps leading up to World War I, concentrating on the events of August 1914. Briefly traces the course of the war through November 11, 1918, when an armistice was declared.
Yanks, by John S. D. Eisenhower
A best-selling military historian's blow-by-blow depiction brings to life the generals and the doughboys who turned the tide in World War I, the conflict that gave birth to the modern U.S. Army.
World War II, 1939-1945
The Central Rappahannock Regional Library has hundreds of books, videos, and CDs from or about the World War II period. You can use our catalog with broad subject search terms like World War, 1939-1945 and World War, 1939-1945 - Songs and Music, or a general keyword search like the Andrews Sisters, Harry James, Winston Churchill, or Battle of the Bulge. And don't forget that our reference staff is always standing by at Ask a CRRL Librarian.
Ernie Pyle's War
If the hidden horrors and valor of combat persist at all in the public mind, it is because of those writers who watched it and recorded it in the faith that war is too important to be confined to the private memories of the warriors. Above all these writers, Ernie Pyle towered as a giant. Through his words and his compassion, Americans everywhere gleaned their understanding of what they came to call "The Good War."
Infantry Soldier: Holding the Line at the Battle of the Bulge
Describes in harrowing detail the life of the men assigned to infantry rifle platoons during World War II. Neill served on the front lines in Belgium and Germany. He focuses on the role of his division in the Battle of the Bulge. The 99th, "green" recruits bolstered by veterans of the 2nd Division, held the northern line of the Bulge, preventing a German breakthrough and undermining their strategy. Using his wartime letters, his research in the United States and Europe, and hundreds of interviews, Neill chronicles his and his friends' experiences -- acts of horror and heroism on the front line.
Pearl Harbor: America's Darkest Day
This chronicle of the events of December 7, 1941, in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, offers a gripping account of the political, social, and military landscape leading up to that infamous day.
Shadow of Suribachi
For over 50 years, myth has surrounded the American flag raisings on Suribachi. This book presents the first complete and accurate account of those controversial events. The battle for Iwo Jima was a classic, seminal event of World War II, and Joe Rosenthal's photograph of the second flag raising on Mt. Suribachi remains the war's most famous icon.
Songs That Got Us Through WWII, vol. 2
Many popular hits by the Andrews Sisters, Duke Ellington, Roy Rogers, Dinah Shore, Glenn Miller and more.
A Wartime Log
With watercolors extracted from food can labels and paint-brushes made from their own hair, downed WWII American airmen illustrated their experiences as prisoners of war in blank books provided by the YMCA.