by Edgar L. Keeler
compiled by Ruth A. (Keeler) Weaver
Every young soldier and sailor who went to war in World War I was given a pocket diary. This young man from a farm in South Dakota wrote in his every day. The story is that he disembarked (from the sister ship to the Titanic) on the coast of France and saw two lines of soldiers, one headed for rifles, the other headed for musical instruments. He thought a bugle was the better choice and headed for that line. General Pershing had been so impressed with the national and royal bands in Europe that he decided to start his own band. This soldier who picked up a bugle was a member of the very first Pershing's Band. Stationed in Charmount, France, he tells of playing for the King of France in the morning and going to town to do laundry in the afternoon. His daughter transcribed the diary and brought some amazing photographs, one of which wraps totally around the cover of the book. There is no narrative—the diary and photos tell the story.
Specifications: 7 x 10 trim size, 142 pages, softcover, digitally printed, set in Didot. Cover photo from the U.S. Army. Published privately by the author, 2003.