Fifty years ago, a disparate group of soldiers was cobbled together at Fort Benning Georgia to become the Second Battalion of the Seventh Cavalry, part of the newly created First Cavalry Division (Airmobile). Their senior leadership had no experience with the new tactics or methods of operations required in the air assault concept, neither did their junior officers, nor their men. It was a chaotic few weeks as they were hurriedly assembled, issued new equipment, and in short order, were bussed to Charleston Naval Base for a thirty day voyage to Vietnam. Their families are given a few days to relocate since the men were no longer assigned to the Fort, and in 1965, this was no small task in the South for new brides, new mothers, or those with school children.

 

Alley introduces the characters that made up the Seventh Cavalry and their dependents and the politics that sent the men into war so far away. He reveals the foibles, strengths, and humor as nearly seven hundred men of the Second of the Seventh try to meld into a fighting unit…Little did they know they would soon become the recipients of the largest number of Purple Hearts awarded to a single unit for a single day’s fighting in the war.

 

In February 1876, the far flung companies of the Seventh Cavalry began their trek toward Fort Abraham Lincoln in the Dakota Territory. Coming from occupation duties in the south, Texas, Kentucky, South Carolina, Mississippi, and scattered across the west, they too were being pulled into a fighting unit with new tactics and new men.

 

In The Ghosts of the Green Grass, Alley tells the parallel stories of the Seventh Cavalry of 1876 and 1965. Separated by almost a hundred years, the events of the past seem to pull the Air Cavalry men toward a common fate beside another isolated river. It is there they meet the ghosts of the green grass that will haunt them all their days.

 

Hardcover with dust jacket - 395 page - 12 pages of photos - 12 page index - 10 page bibliography - glossary of terms and endnotes

Price: $29.99

Plus Tax, S & H total price $38.76