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Firsthand accounts

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Vietnam Book Review: American Warrior

    American Warrior: A Combat Memoir of Vietnam by Brig. Gen. John C. “Doc” Bahnsen Jr. with Wess Roberts. Citadel Press, New York, 2007, hardcover $24.95, softcover $16.95. American Warrior, described in the frontispiece as a “combat...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Convoy Escort Service Extraordinaire

    Aboard its V-100s named for comic book heroes, the 66th Military Police Company battled the enemy evildoers for control of South Vietnam’s roads. No matter where you are, there should be some law and order, and this is especially true in...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Civilian medic’s routine service in a Vietnam war zone

    As a civilian medic serving in the midst of war in Vietnam from 1965 to 1972, I had my share of close calls. I found myself in plenty of hairy experiences, often alongside GIs who displayed remarkable acts of courage and compassion, but...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Photograph relieves one GI of his lingering guilt

    Over the years, the memories of my experience in Vietnam were becoming more and more faded. Had I actually spent some 60 days in the war? My neverceasing reminder that yes, I had been there, was the pain in my right knee. I had been...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Collateral Damage

    A wounded vet’s odyssey home began four decades ago on an egg-splattered bus. I was wounded on August 18, 1968, in an ambush while at the helm of an armored troop carrier heading north on Hai Muoi Tam Canal in the Mekong Delta. With a...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Douglas Pike On the Tragedy of Our Times

    Tough questions remained even for the man who arguably knew the intricacies of Vietnam better than anyone else. INTRODUCTION Douglas Pike arrived in Saigon in 1960 as an employee of the U.S. Agency for International Development. He spent...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    World Airways’ Audacious Airlift

    Just days before Saigon’s fall in April 1975, Ed Daly and Charles Patterson of World Airways defied U.S. bureaucracy to fly Amerasian orphans out of Vietnam. Charles Patterson earned the Silver Star, Bronze Star Medal and Purple Heart...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Setting a Trap for the VC at An Ba

    When the troops of the Cacti Blue unleashed a crushing air combat assault, they had a VC Local Force Battalion right where they wanted: caught between the proverbial rock and a hard place. “Damn it!” I yelled. “What’s the matter...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    No Choice

    You’re a slave, the Yankees are coming, and your fate is “refugeeing” with your master to god-knows-where. “Times were so hard” for the slaves during the war, Elizabeth Hines remembered, because her “white master took them into...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    Caved Inn at Vicksburg

    Three eyewitness accounts describe what it was like for Vicksburg civilians to burrow underground to escape unrelenting shellfire. In the spring and summer of 1863, as the following accounts show, Vicksburg residents found themselves in a...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    I Saw a Column of Black Smoke

    Two Confederate soldiers recount their dogged efforts to stop Sherman’s March to the Sea despite confusing orders and overwhelming odds. While not quite a dime a dozen, Union memoirs of Major General William T. Sherman’s celebrated...

  • Military History Magazine

    Selections: Letters from the Front

    From the Revolutionary War to Desert Storm, combatants’ correspondence is personal and revealing. William Czako began a hastily written letter to his sister, Helen, on a winter day from a U.S. warship. Czako wondered whether he—or his...

  • MHQ Magazine

    Experience | Wartime Diarist

    For seven years Swedish writer Astrid Lindgren, who would become world-famous for her Pippi Longstocking books, kept notes on “a world gone mad.”...

  • American History Magazine

    Fearful Cry of Freedom

    Rare oral histories of the Civil War reveal slaves held surprisingly mixed opinions of Marse Lincoln and their emancipation. On the eve of the Civil War one in seven people in the United States was a slave. Moreover, Africa was already a...

  • Civil War Times Magazine

    ‘He Is Dead, Yet He Liveth’

    John James Carson drove the ambulance that transported the wounded ‘Stonewall’ Jackson from the Chancellorsville battlefield to Guiney’s Station. In the early morning hours of May 4, 1863, an ambulance bumped along dark Virginia...

  • Civil War Times Magazine

    Cavalier Gunner

    The diary entries of one of J.E.B. Stuart’s renowned Horse Artillerymen chronicle the Battle of Brandy Station and the Rebels’ 1863 march into Pennsylvania. The saber-wielding troopers of Confederate Major General J.E.B. Stuart’s...