Edward M. Almond and the US Army: From the 92nd Infantry Division to the X Corps gives an overview of General Edward M. Almond’s development as a military leader and his overall service. This biography covers almost 60 years from his early career as a soldier to his time in teaching and military leadership, and finally, to his retirement and death. It also covers the development of the US Army during that time, and the US Army’s treatment of African American soldiers.
This book notices the controversial, faulty man while examining his personal life and military accomplishments. Here is an excerpt from Edward M. Almond and the US Army: From the 92nd Infantry Division to the X Corps, page 26, that displays Almond’s attitude as a soldier during his early career:
From this first combat action, Almond placed himself at the front with his troops. On the evening of August 4, Almond seated himself in an observation post on the front slope of a hill overlooking the Vesle River. From there he could direct supporting fire for an American attack. The 3rd Battalion, 58th Infantry, advanced in a dispersed formation because of the Germans firing from the other side of the river. Almond sent his draft animals and carts to the rear and positioned his machine guns so that they could provide overhead fire across the stream. Just as Almond took a moment to eat, a shell exploded nearby and a fragment struck him in the head. He later remembered: “I had just opened a can of corn willy [corned beef] when a shell broke into our midst from across the stream, and although I had my helmet on it penetrated my helmet and the top of my head. My orderly who had brought me my supper was killed by another fragment, and a number of men in my vicinity were wounded also, and a couple killed.”
Medics evacuated Almond to an aid station and later to a field hospital where he recuperated. Almond’s small but potentially deadly wound and his performance under fire earned him respect and a commendation. The 4th Division commander, Maj. Gen. George Cameron, later cited Almond’s valor:31 “Staggering to his feet[,] he issued the necessary orders for the welfare of his men, directing that they report to the next senior officer and after making an inspection to see that all were as well protected as possible from shell fire, he consented to be evacuated. His coolness, courage[,] and utter disregard of personal welfare were a great inspiration to his men.”