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This inspiring anthology is the first to convey the rich experiences and contributions of women in the American military in their own words—from the Revolutionary War to the present wars in the Middle East.
Serving with the Union Army during the Civil War as a nurse, scout, spy, and soldier, Harriet Tubman tells what it was like to be the first American woman to lead a raid against an enemy, freeing some 750 slaves. Busting gender stereotypes, Josette Dermody Wingo enlisted as a gunner’s mate in the navy in World War II to teach sailors to fire Oerlikon antiaircraft guns. Marine Barbara Dulinsky recalls serving under fire in Saigon during the Tet Offensive of 1968, and Brooke King describes the aftermath of her experiences outside the wire with the army in Operation Iraqi Freedom. In excerpts from their diaries, letters, oral histories, and pension depositions—as well as from published and unpublished memoirs—generations of women reveal why and how they chose to serve their country, often breaking with social norms and often at great personal peril.
About the Author
Jerri Bell is a retired naval officer and the managing editor of O-Dark-Thirty, the literary journal of the Veterans Writing Project.
Tracy Crow is a former Marine Corps officer and the author of Eyes Right: Confessions from a Woman Marine (Nebraska, 2012) and On Point: A Guide to Writing the Military Story (Potomac Books, 2015).
Kayla Williams served in the U.S. Army for five years and is the author of Love My Rifle More Than You: Young and Female in the U.S. Army and Plenty of Time When We Get Home: Love and Recovery in the Aftermath of War.
"From every major U.S. war, the stories both awe and inspire."—Captain Bill Bray, Proceedings
— Captain Bill Bray
“Even those already familiar with military history will enjoy learning the details and politics behind the formation of female units. . . . This book should be required reading for women in the military and those who seek to understand them.”—Megan Moyette, Army History
— Megan Moyette
" A useful introduction to the role of American women in war."—A. A. Nofi, Strategy Page
— A. A. Nofi
"Bell and Crow have done a service by amplifying the important voices in this collection."—Publishers Weekly
— Publishers Weekly
"This rich anthology of women's military stories is ripe with the history of female contributions to U.S. conflicts. . . . Enthusiastically recommended for all collections."—Mattie Cook, Library Journal starred review
— Mattie Cook
"Observing that “too often women were viewed as incidental,” Jerri Bell, retired naval officer and managing editor of O-Dark Thirty, and Tracy Crow, a former Marine Corp Officer, endeavored through this anthology to highlight the service of women in the military conflicts in which the United States has engaged from the American Revolution to Operation Iraqi Freedom."—John R. Burch Jr., American Reference Books Annual
— John R. Burch Jr.
"While women have historically been a very small proportion of the American military, this book is still an important work that required a major undertaking given the challenges of finding women's voices from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in particular, as well as some periods in the twentieth."—Tanya L. Roth, H-Diplo
— Tanya L. Roth
“It’s My Country Too presents essential research and up heaves women’s history of gallantry that’s been obscured and overlooked. . . . These accounts deserve integration into our national narrative.”—Amy Lou Jenkins, Consequence Magazine
— Consequence Magazine
“Brings to light many unknown and underappreciated tales of valor and service.”—Military Heritage
— Military Heritage
"The breadth and depth of the stories the editors included is remarkable."—Eric Chandler, Wrath-Bearing Tree
— Eric Chandler
“This compendium of women’s bravery and accomplishments is a compelling read of firsthand accounts in U.S. military conflicts. No American woman should raise her right hand and swear to ‘support and defend’ without these haunting voices urging her to walk the trail where few have gone. Every American history syllabus should include this book as a requirement. A true inspiration!”—Maj. Gen. Dee Ann McWilliams, U.S. Army (Ret.), president of Women in Military Service for America
— Dee Ann McWilliams
“Jerri Bell and Tracy Crow have done a great literary service with this book—for too long, the courage and gallantry of American women on the battlefield has gone unnoticed. This is vital, superb reading.”—Matt Gallagher, author of Youngblood
— Matt Gallagher
“This meticulously researched book . . . allows women to speak for themselves about their experiences in American military service. It echoes with voices of many thousands of their sisters in arms.”—Margaret Vining, curator of Armed Forces History for the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution
— Margaret Vining