This is a review of the Osprey Publishing LTD book US 10th Mountain Division in World War II by author Gordon L. Rottman and illustrator Peter Dennis with series editor Martin Windrow.
body of the text
** Against the backdrop of the particular demands of mountain warfare, this book describes and illustrates the organization, special clothing and equipment of America’s only dedicated mountain division of World War II. It traces the complex evolution of the light infantry concept; the long preparation before the 10th Mtn Div was deployed to Europe; how its actual employment differed from what had been anticipated; and the grueling battles in the Italian mountains that saw over 30 percent of the division’s infantry become casualties in just four months of combat. The text is illustrated with rare wartime photos, and detailed colour plates of uniforms and gear that pioneered today’s cold-weather combat equipment. **
** Quoted from the back cover of the book.
Osprey Publications Ltd has released US 10th Mountain Division in World War II as Number 482 in their Men-at-Arms series. It is a paperback book with 48 pages. Included with the text are black and white photographs, colour illustrations, informational charts and detailed captions. It has a 2012 copyright and the ISBN is 978-1-84908-808-4. As the title states, the book covers the US 10th Mountain Division in World War II.
"Climb to Glory" – The US 10th Mountain Division motto.
- The mountain warfare environment
- Origins Of US Army Mountain troops
- Formulating the requirement
- Raising and training the units
-The light division experiment
- The 87th Mountain Goes To “War”
- The Aleutians
- Creation Of 10th Mountain Division
- Training, 1943-44
- The mountain infantry regiment
- Weapons and equipment
- A new commander
- Deployment To Italy
- Riva Ridge and Mt Belvedere-Mt della Torraccia Ridge, February-March 1945
- The March offensive, March 3-6
- The Spring offensive, April 14-16
- Breakout, April 17-20
- Po Valley, April 20-26
- The End Of The Trail
- Repatriation and inactivation
- The Mountaineers live on
- Select Bibliography
- Plate Commentaries
The text in the book is well written and extremely detailed. Gordon L. Rottman covers the US 10th Mountain Division during World War Two very well and goes into great detail in the development, training and the military actions that the unit was involved with such as the fighting in the Aleutians and in Italy. Another area covered in the text is the uniforms, weapons and other equipment used by the US 10th Mountain Division. Included as well is information about the M29 Weasel (T-15) and (T-24) and armor such as the M4A1/A4 Sherman, M5A1 Stuart, M24 Chaffee and the M10 Tank Destroyer.
This is a well written history that will be of great use and interest to the well-seasoned and knowledgeable US 10th Mountain Division historian or the individual that is new to this world famous military unit and wants to learn about its history. As I read through the text I didn’t notice any spelling or grammatical errors. Grammar and spelling might not be an important factor to everyone however it is something that I take notice of and pass on my findings. I feel that if the text is well written then it shows that the author has taken the time to be a professional with their writing. Anyone wanting to add an excellent reference and history book on the US 10th Mountain Division to their personal library will be pleased with this book and will find this book very informative and interesting. Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the text for yourself.
There are a total of 34 black and white photographs throughout the book. There are no colour photographs featured in this volume. Gordon L. Rottman has stuck to the title of the book and chose photographs that are specific to the US 10th Mountain Division and did not include photographs that strayed from the main subject of the book. The photographs are typical for that period. They range from very nice and clear staged photographs to some that are not so well defined.
Several of them are staged or posed for the photographer, as opposed to stills being made from films. Nonetheless the photographs accompany the volume nicely and help provide visual reference to the text. There are a few that have an out of focus look to them and some appear to be too dark. With that said the quality of the blurry photographs is of no fault of the author and do not take anything away from the book. I haven’t seen a majority of the featured photographs before, if not all of them, and I was pleased with this. Many of the photographs provide several close-up details on items such as uniforms and web equipment.
Some of the items shown are:
- Ski training
- Mountain warfare training
- US M29 (T-15) and (T-24) Weasels
- Various clothing items
- Web gear and backpacks
- Rappelling training
- Pack mules
- Canine handlers
- Camp sites
- M4 Sherman tank
- M10 Tank Destroyer
- 75mm M1A1 pack howitzer
- 37mm T33 AT gun disassembled and packed on a pack mule using a Phillips pack saddle
- A captured German bunker
Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the photographs for yourself.
the colour illustrations
There are 8 pages of colour illustrations by illustrator Peter Dennis which cover the uniforms and various equipment of the US 10th Mountain Division and they are very well done. There are Plate Commentaries that begin on Page 43 that accompany the illustrations and provide details on the individual regiments, dates and locations shown, equipment, etc. The military scale figure modeler will find the illustrations very helpful for detailing purposes. Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the illustrations for yourself.
The colour illustrations are of the following:
- Camp Hale, Colorado, 1942
1: Corporal, service uniform
2: Private, cold-weather clothing
3: Private first class, mountain clothing
- Ski Training
- Skier With Combat Load
- Weasel Cargo Carrier, 1943
- Mountain Tent & Snowshoes
- Kiska Island, August, 1943
- Pack Mules
- Combat In The Appenines
- Aid Station
There are no maps included in this volume.
There are 8 informational charts provided which are well done, nicely detailed and cover:
- A chart of US Military abbreviations
- 87th Combat Team, Kiska Island, June 1943
- 10th Light Division (Pack, Alpine) July 15, 1943-November 6, 1944
- 10th Mountain Division November 6, 1944 to November 30, 1945
- Mountain rifle platoon, November 1944
- Senior officers, 10th Mountain Division, January-May 1945
- 10th Mountain Division attachments in Italy, January-May 1945
- Ski trooper’s equipment (exclusive of clothing items, weapon & ammo) in US, 1942-44
The captions that accompany the photographs are well written and are very detailed. They give very specific information as to individuals, uniform items, weapons, and vehicles shown. As with the text I didn’t notice any spelling or grammatical errors as I read through the captions. As I stated before, grammar and spelling might not be an important factor to everyone however it is something that I take notice of and pass on my findings. Please refer to the scans that I have provided so that you can judge the captions for yourself.
All in all I am very impressed with the book. This is a very nice reference book that contains many excellent and subject specific photographs and illustrations and well detailed captions. It details the US 10th Mountain Division in World War II very well. This volume will be of interest and also beneficial to the military uniform and equipment collector, military re-enactor, weapon and military vehicle enthusiast and anyone interested in US 10th Mountain Division in World War II or Special Forces units as a whole. There are no maps provided in this volume and personally I would have liked to have seen some maps provided to show the units movements during its various actions, but that is just a personal wish. I would have no hesitation to add other Osprey titles to my personal library nor would I hesitate to recommend this book to others as it will be a welcome addition to one’s personal military reference library.
This book was provided by Osprey Publishing Ltd. Please be sure to mention that you saw the book reviewed here when you make your purchase.
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Take a look inside the book at the Amazon web site:
http://www.amazon.com/10th-Mountain-Division-World-Men-at-Arms/dp/184908808X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1357492238&sr=8-1&keywords=US 10th Mountain Division in World War II
Take a look inside the Kindle Edition at the Amazon web site:
http://www.amazon.com/Mountain-Division-World-Men-at-Arms-ebook/dp/B009BWWPJW/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1357492238&sr=8-2&keywords=US 10th Mountain Division in World War II
Highs: Well written and detailed text and captions
Nice photographs and artwork
Lows: No maps showing the units movements during its various actionsVerdict: This is a very nice reference book that examines the US 10th Mountain Division in World War II very well. It will make a nice addition to anyone’s personal library and will also be a benefit to the military enthusiast, historian and modeler.
Our Thanks to Osprey Publishing! This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.
About Randy L Harvey (HARV) FROM: WYOMING, UNITED STATES
I have been in the modeling hobby off and on since my youth.
I build mostly 1/35 scale. However I work in other scales for aircraft, ships and the occasional civilian car kit. I also kit bash and scratch-build when the mood strikes.
I mainly model WWI and WWII figures, armor, vehic...