ABILENE, Kan. - Author Gary Palmer will discuss his book, The U.S. Cavalry - Time of Transition, 1938-1944: Horses to Mechanization on July 20 at 11 a.m. in the Visitors Center Auditorium at the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum. The program is free and open to the public.
During the 1930s and into World War II, the U.S. Cavalry wrestled with a fundamental question: should its horses be retired and replaced with tanks and other mechanized vehicles or should the horse remain the mainstay of the cavalry? Time of Transition
is a volume of military history that salutes the pioneers who stood at the crossroads of tradition and modernization and courageously grappled with the challenges of change.
Palmer was an aviator in the U.S. Navy for 10 years. He flew the E-2A Hawkeye, a tactical early warning aircraft, during the Vietnam War. Following his military service, Palmer joined the San Diego Sheriff's Department while simultaneously serving as a tank commander in the Army National Guard.
Meanwhile, in 1994, Palmer became interested in his father's World War II service with the 106th Cavalry Group. Ten years in the making, Time of Transition is Palmer's tribute to his father who served in the 106th Cavalry Group during World War II. He deftly blends official wartime records with fresh interviews, stories and rare photos from personal and archival collections.
Guardsmen and regular Army cavalry troops relate their inspiring wartime stories. Palmer also uncovers the behind-the-scenes activities of the War Department, Army General Staff, and other military units as they test the firepower of the traditional horse cavalry against the new technology of tanks, jeeps and other mechanized vehicles.
Copies of The U.S. Cavalry - Time of Transition, 1938-1944: Horses to Mechanization will be available for sale in the gift shop. A book signing will follow the discussion.