Images from “Over There”
Personal Photography of America’s Expeditionary Forces in WWI and Occupation
Stephen C. McGeorge
Schiffer Publishing, Atglen, Pennsylvania, 2018, 128 pages
Book Review published on: July 5, 2019
Since 2007, Army Maj. (Retired) Stephen McGeorge has worked as the deputy chief historian at the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Prior, he was the historian for the Stryker brigade combat teams at Fort Lewis, Washington. McGeorge’s other experiences include teaching at the Combat Studies Institute, serving as director of the Oregon Military Museum, and serving as the National Museum of the United States Army’s chief of collections curator. The idea for Images from “Over There” stemmed from a National Museum of the United States Army exhibit idea in which the museum wanted to display photographs of U.S. soldiers in France as part of the American Expeditionary Force and the Army of Occupation in Germany. With a fascination of World War I and as a collector of “doughboy” pictures, McGeorge agreed to allow the museum to use the pictures from his collection. Instead of using more formal “official” photos, the decision was made to use pictures of a more personal nature.
Seeing the collection as a unique opportunity, McGeorge decided to create Images from “Over There.” The book has 128 pages with 150 pictures that have never been published before. The first twelve pages of pictures are of known “doughboys.” When the identity of a soldier is known, McGeorge does a very nice job of providing background information in addition to noting key aspects of the soldier’s uniform, equipment, and unit. The identity of the “doughboys” in the remaining photos are not known, but again McGeorge does a very good job of pointing out and describing key aspects of uniforms, equipment, and possible locations and dates. Unlike most books that focus primarily on “combat troops,” McGeorge’s photos cover ranks from private to general and a wide range occupational specialties such as infantryman, artilleryman, communication specialists, and cooks.
I recommend this book to those interested in better understanding our “doughboys” during World War 1. Additionally, Images from “Over There” would be great to be prominently displayed as a coffee table book. It is easy to read and the pictures are excellent.
Book Review written by: David McCulley, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas