The Quartermaster Corps : Operations in the War Against Germany
Publication of this volume completes the subseries dealing with Quartermaster operations during World War II. Two companion volumes of this group have described the Quartermaster organization and achievements in the United States, and a third has told about operations in the Pacific in the war against Japan. The principal Quartermaster function in World War II was to supply items needed by all Army troops, most notably, food and clothing. But the Quartermaster Corps was more than a supply force; it provided many services, such as bath and laundry facilities, necessary to the health and comfort of the troops. The prompt collection and careful identification and burial of the dead and the respectful and suitable disposition of their possessions were essential services that contributed much to the morale of the front-line soldier. While established to serve the Army itself, before the war was over in Europe the Quartermaster organization found it had also to provide minimum support for millions of war prisoners and destitute civilians. However prosaic a history of providing goods and services may seem at first glance, this was an activity of vital concern to the American soldier, and in the Mediterranean and European theaters it was an enormous and highly complicated operation. By the spring of 1945 the Quartermaster organization in the European theater was feeding and clothing and otherwise providing necessities and comforts to more than seven and one-half million people, the largest human support operation by a single organization in all history to that time. Inevitably Quartermaster officers and troops could not satisfy everybody, and made some mistakes; it is to the credit of the authors of this volume that they have tackled fairly and squarely-if not laid to rest-a number of controversial issues. Since so much of the Quartermaster effort was essentially civilian in its character, the general as well as the military reader should find this work instructive.
- Paperback | 822 pages
- 177.8 x 254 x 47.24mm | 1,723.64g
- 04 Jul 2015
- Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
- United States
- black & white illustrations
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About William F Ross
William F. Ross, a graduate of Hamilton College (Clinton, N.Y.), has done graduate work in Germanics at the University of Berlin and at Harvard. Commissioned in the Field Artillery, AUS, in 1942, he then received training as a prisoner of war interrogator at Camp Ritchie, Md., and served in the G-2 Division in the Pentagon. He was an assistant military attache in Turkey from 1943 to 1946, and was then employed in the National Archives for a year, surveying the federal records created during the war. He is one of the coauthors of Federal Records of World War II: The Military Agencies (Washington, 1950). Returning to active military duty late in 1947, he was assigned to OCMH in various capacities for nearly four years. During that time he was the last Army-sponsored editor of Military Affairs, and later was senior member of the team that translated and edited the German Reports Series of Department of the Army pamphlets. He was transferred to the Historical Division, U.S. Army, Europe, in 1951, and while there edited and brought to press the Guide to Foreign Military Studies, 1945-54: Catalog and Index (Darmstadt, 1955). During the years 1957-61, when Mr. Ross was engaged in writing The Quartermaster Corps: Operations in the War Against Germany, he was a civilian employee in the Historical Branch, Office of The Quartermaster General. He is now Assistant Historian, Defense Supply Agency. Charles F. Romanus is coauthor of three volumes on the China-Burma-India Theater already published in the series UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II: Stilwell's Mission to China (1953); Stilwell's Command Problems (1956); and Time Runs Out in CBI (1959). He received the degree of Master of Arts in history from the University of Illinois and pursued his work for a doctorate at Louisiana State University, where he was a teaching fellow in history. Entering the Army in 1943, he was commissioned in March 1945 and became a historian in Headquarters, China Theater. Except for the 3-year period (1953-56) during which he worked on the present volume as a member of the Historical Section, Office of The Quartermaster General, he has been on the staff of the Office of the Chief of Military History since 1946, serving presently as Chief, General Reference Branch. He holds a commission as major in the U.S. Army Reserve.