United States Navy & Marine Corps Aviation Squadron Lineage, Insignia, and History, Vol. 2: Marine Scout Bomber, Torpedo-Bomber, Bombing & Attack Squadrons, by Michael J. Crowder (ISBN: 076434755; Schiffer Publishing, 4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen,PA 19310; 610-593-1777; www.schifferbooks.com. Hardcover, 11” x 8.6”, 228 pages, illustrated throughout, 2015, $59.99)
Following his first volume covering USN and Marine fighter squadrons, Michael Crowder takes a new approach to presenting the material. He included squadrons in this book based on either their current or last mission designation of attack, covering each from its activation.
Thoroughly researched, it has a complete, extensive bibliography, and the illustrations of the insignia are almost entirely of originals (though only obverses are shown). Crowder has combined these with a trove of historical images, supplemented by historically accurate, engaging narrative, making the book more than just a collector’s guide to insignia, but a thorough history of attack squadrons. —JAG
Rally Round the Flag: Uniforms of the Union Volunteers of 1861. The New England States, by Ron Field. (ISBN 9780764349089, Schiffer Publishing, 4880 Lower Valley Rd, Atglen, PA 19310; 610-593-1777; www.schifferbooks.com. Hardcover, 8- 1/2” x 11”, 160 pages, 165 color and b/w photos, 2015, $45.00)
Many will recognize the author as a widely acclaimed military scholar. This latest work of his builds on an award-winning article, “The New Hampshire Volunteers of 1861,” published in Military Collector & Historian, the journal of the Company of Military Historians. This book examines what the citizen soldiery of the New England States wore in 1861. An exhaustive search of thousands of newspapers yielded a myriad of reports and personal accounts from soldiers’ letters, which together, offer a stirring view of events during the first few months of the Civil War. The combination of detail from numerous diaries and regimental histories with extant images and artifacts enables the author to describe the appearance of the Union volunteers of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Vermont, and Maine.
Even though an exciting, fresh work, the prospective buyer should be aware that nearly one-fourth of the 160 pages are dedicated to bibliography, footnotes, and index. While this helps the work stand as a research pedestal, it does make the retail price a bit hefty. Regardless, if early Civil War uniforms are your passion, this book will satisfy!—JAG