Alvin York: A New Biography of the Hero of the Argonne

Alvin York: A New Biography of the Hero of the Argonne

by Douglas V. Mastriano
Alvin York: A New Biography of the Hero of the Argonne

Alvin York: A New Biography of the Hero of the Argonne

by Douglas V. Mastriano


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Alvin C. York (1887–1964)—devout Christian, conscientious objector, and reluctant hero of World War I—is one of America's most famous and celebrated soldiers. Known to generations through Gary Cooper's Academy Award-winning portrayal in the 1941 film Sergeant York, York is credited with the capture of 132 German soldiers on October 8, 1918, in the Meuse-Argonne region of France—a deed for which he was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.

At war's end, the media glorified York's bravery but some members of the German military and a soldier from his own unit cast aspersions on his wartime heroics. Historians continue to debate whether York has received more recognition than he deserves. A fierce disagreement about the location of the battle in the Argonne forest has further complicated the soldier's legacy.

In Alvin York, Douglas V. Mastriano sorts fact from myth in the first full-length biography of York in decades. He meticulously examines York's youth in the hills of east Tennessee, his service in the Great War, and his return to a quiet civilian life dedicated to charity. By reviewing artifacts recovered from the battlefield using military terrain analysis, forensic study, and research in both German and American archives, Mastriano reconstructs the events of October 8 and corroborates the recorded accounts. On the eve of the WWI centennial, Alvin York promises to be a major contribution to twentieth-century military history.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780813145198
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
Publication date: 03/25/2014
Series: American Warriors Series
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 1,136,137
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Douglas V. Mastriano, Ph.D., is a Colonel in the U.S. Army.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations x

1 A Life Well Lived 1

2 Without Prospect 9

3 At War with the Army 21

4 Marching as to War 43

5 Into the Trenches! 57

6 Prelude to Battle 67

7 One Day in October 93

8 The War without End 117

9 Emergence of a National Hero 145

10 Back on the Farm in Pall Mall 161

11 Another War with Germany 173

12 Honoring a Hero 191

Acknowledgments 217

Notes 223

Bibliography 283

Index 307

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