Signed first edition of With The Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa by Eugene B. Sledge, with an additional inscription by Sledge’s commanding officer.
Octavo, xvi, 326pp. Brown hardcover, title stamped in gilt on spine. First edition, with no additional printings on copyright page. This copy appears unread. In publisher’s very good dust jacket, short closed tears along top edge, retail price on front flap, bright illustrations. Signed on the front free endpaper by the author, Eugene Sledge, and his commanding officer, Brigadier General Austin C. Shofner. Inscription reads: “To: Dwight. To a Marine by a Marine from a Marine. The author, Dr. Sledge was a member of my battalion on Peleliu. Austin C. Shofner. Brig. Gen. U.S.M.C. (Ret).” An exceptional association copy.
Then Lt. Colonel Shofner is featured in this book. Of him, Sledge notes that “not only was he highly respected, but his men considered him someone special. As a captain, he had survived the fighting on Corregidor, been captured by the Japanese, escaped, and had returned to combat.” Shofner remained in the Marines until 1959, when he retired as a Brigadier General. He lived in Tennessee the remainder of his life and died in 1999. This memoir by E.B. Sledge, which recounts his time as a marine during World War II in the South Pacific, is considered one of the finest war memoirs ever written by a soldier. It began as notes that Sledge kept in his bible during the battles and which he sporadically wrote down after returning to the United States. This work, which went largely unnoticed when it was first published in 1981, has become an important first person narrative of the Pacific theater. It was the inspiration for the HBO miniseries, The Pacific, and Ken Burns PBS series, The War.