Honoring the Doughboys: Following My Grandfather's World War I Diary is a stunning presentation of contemporary photographs taken by the author that are paired with diary entries written by his grandfather, George A. Carlson, who was a soldier in the U.S. Army during World War I. Lowdermilk followed his grandfather's path through France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Germany and returned with these meticulously crafted photographs and his own engaging stories that bring the diary to life for contemporary readers.
Lowdermilk's passion for World War I and military history began as a young boy when he listened to his grandfather tell his stories about serving as an infantryman- a "doughboy"-in Europe during the Great War. When his grandfather passed away in 1983, Lowdermilk's mother gave him her father's diary, which included not only lengthy descriptions of the landscapes, towns, and battles he had experienced, but also keen observations and insights about life as a doughboy for Mr. Carlson and his buddies.
Lowdermilk became fascinated with the diary, first transcribing it and then plotting his grandfather's course. He immersed himself in the history of World War I and its geography, eventually retracing, more than a dozen years, the path of his grandfather's journey.
This image-rich tour of European landscapes, battlefields, and monuments offers the reader an experience that is at once an intimate reliving of Carlson's time as a doughboy, a lively collection of Lowdermilk's travel anecdotes, and a moving expression of gratitude to American veterans of the Great War. The foreword by Helen Patton, granddaughter of General George S. Patton, Jr., adds an extra dimension to the narrative.
** Nominated for a 2015 IPPY Award" from the Independent Publishers Association **
"Jeff Lowdermilk has made a significant contribution to the public memory of World War I. By combining the straightforward narrative of his grandfather, George A. Carlson, with his stunning photographs of memorials and landscapes associated with the war, Lowdermilk captures the sense of courage and sacrifice of that epochal moment in world history. In his introduction, he reminds us that, because the American role was relatively brief, this war is often overlooked in our history books. Because of his passionate dedication to this subject, the valorous service of his grandfather and all the grandfathers-including my own-who fought to defend freedom will not be forgotten." -Dr. Brent D. Glass, Director Emeritus, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution
"Jeff Lowdermilk has done more than provide a civic service-remembering the thousands of American doughboys who fought and died for freedom on the fields of France, Belgium, and Germany during World War I. He has done more than give us a personal testament to his grandfather's bravery, memory, and the heartfelt relationship between a young man and his wise elder. He has given us a work of art. Lowdermilk's achingly beautiful photographs of the graves, monuments, and fields of valor of the American Expeditionary Forces cannot fail to impress the reader with the heroism of a generation of Americans long and wrongfully forgotten. May his grandfather's words and his spectacular photographic vision move you as much as they have moved me." -Bruce C. McKenna, creator, writer, and producer of HBO's Emmy Award-winning miniseries, The Pacific, and writer of the television series, Band of Brothers
"Honoring the Doughboys: Following My Grandfather's World War I Diary is a lasting and loving tribute to the honor and memory of all Americans who served their country during World War I, especially the 'doughboys,' the common foot soldiers who fought in Europe for liberty and a better world. The words of Jeff Lowdermilk's grandfather, taken from his war-time diary, speak viscerally to us about his experiences. As illustrations accompanying these words, none could be more appropriate than Lowdermilk's photographs, as they provide a visual record of the legacy of service and sacrifice of many thousands who did their patriotic duty." -Jonathan R. Casey, Museum Archivist, National World War I Museum
"Honoring the Doughboys: Following My Grandfather's World War I Diary is a must read for all generations. Lowdermilk's eloquent way of weaving his own photographic journey with history along with his grandfather's personal war experience is an awe-inspiring gift of history with a heart. This book brings to life the very sacrifices that so many men and women have endured throughout history in the pursuit of freedom and America's dedication to world peace. This book enlightens, educates, and entertains all at the same time. Wonderfully done, beautifully illustrated, and comprehensively told, it is highly recommended!" -Deborah York, great-granddaughter of Sergeant Alvin C. York and Executive Director of the Sergeant York Patriotic Foundation
"I am sure that no grandfather could be more proud of the way Jeff Lowdermilk has honored his service and followed in his footsteps. His photographs capture with awe the memory of those courageous Americans who served in the Great War. Each photograph is perfectly lit, and the composition always captures some important detail of the landscape or monument." -Frances Levine, Ph.D., Director of the New Mexico History Museum
"From our first meeting, Jeff Lowdermilk has always impressed me with his dedication toward honoring America's military men and women, both past and present. His photographs and narrative nobly connect us with his grandfather's service as well as all of our World War I veterans. I wholeheartedly endorse this important work." -Brigadier General Jack Fox (Retired), New Mexico National Guard and Bataan Memorial Museum
This is a uniquely beautiful and touching book by a renowned photographer. Jeffrey Lowdermilk inherited his grandfather's diary from World War I . The hand-written book details the places and the terrible battles of the many he was in while a doughboy soldier. Jeffrey, who had loved to read about World War I history since he was a young reader, became fascinated by the diary and decided to go as a photographer to the places described in such detail and try to follow his heroic grandfather's footsteps and learn more from experiencing the places and people. He traveled extensively through France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Germany where his grandfather, George A Carlson, had served with the American Expeditionary Forces. He met many of the veteran soldiers from that period of history and became friendly, eliciting their stories about those times also, helping Jeffrey to make the history more real and personal. He used his skills as photographer to make images of the places, the cemeteries, bridges, buildings, landscapes where these battles had taken place, as well as pictures of the many re-enactments that take place from time to time now. The touching foreword is written by Helen Patton, the granddaughter of the same doughboy soldier. I believe this book is a moving portrait of the history of about a century ago, when the world was so troubled. Anyone interested in history will find this book very touching and worthwhile because it truly makes history come alive in an unforgettable way.
Number Of Pages: 128
Published: 15th August 2014
Publisher: George F. Thompson
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 26.2 x 23.4 x 1.5
Weight (kg): 0.86