About the Book
This was written by my dad and I. He dictated and I edited. The original book was done as a scrapbook on acid-free paper with all acid-free prints and texts. Its 120 pages thick but the printed version is quite manageable. When family members wanted copies, I found a great professional photographer who could take photos of the pages and format them to the size requirements of Blurb. It was difficult since some of the ink used was metallic and this required special filters. The original book is 12 x 12. This is 11 x 13 but it is seamless. I also wanted the photography to show the sense of multiple layers of documents that is in the nature of a scrapbook.
The book started out as a history of his fascinating war experience (at Norman's suggestion). However, dad is a fairly humble guy and always felt that his family contributed to who he is and so he wanted it to be about his parents, his siblings, and his life with "Sonya and the girls". The book is filled with primary source material including letters from my dad's siblings and parents during the war years, train tickets in Europe (especially one to Rheims when he was duty officer). Also, officer club cards, a receipt from Cartier for a gift to Bedell Smith, Eisenhower's Chief of Staff and Dad's superior officer. The original announcement to the troops of FDR's death, etc. etc. I especially like a letter from Dad's father to his oldest sister when she was in college away from home in the 1930's. Its a very sweet letter from a man that was self-educated and for whom English was his second language. There are writings from each of my dad's 3 daughters, 4 grandchildren, his wife about their meeting, and from a special niece. His secretary of 30 years also wrote for the book. There are the photos of my mom and dad's years living in Germany after the war when he worked on the Marshall Plan and felt very strongly that WWII was created by the devastation after WWI. He wanted to help insure a solid foundation for Germany going forward; also materials from his work with JFK and Reagan as well as letters from his 6 months teaching and consulting in Beijing
It was a very satisfying 5 years spent with my dad and even more satisfying as I now see him reading the book, which he keeps at his reading chair. His 95 year-old sister tells me that the book "makes her feel so young". Its an activity I recommend highly for so many reasons. Thanks for your interest.