Letters On Military History (Part I)


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Letters On Military History (Part I)

Letters On Military History (Part I)

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About This Collection:

Get letters in the mail from famous American generals, admirals, aviators, spies, and more.

Explore American military history with this six-month collection of weekly letters. This "From The Vault" collection features twenty-six of the best letters, telegrams, and memorandums we've found from throughout American military history.

Each letter also includes domestic first-class USPS postage and "the postscript," an article written by our curators providing historical context for your latest letter.

For more details on why this collection makes a great gift for anyone who loves reading about military history, visit this page.

This is part I of our Military History collection. We expect part II to be available sometime in 2024.

Meet Your Pen Pals

Learn about a few of the leaders and warriors who could grace your mailbox.

Letters from General William T. Sherman

William T. Sherman

General William Tecumseh Sherman wrote Letterjoy members to discuss his famous "March To The Sea" and the rationale behind his controversial decision to burn the city of Atlanta.

Letters from Thurgood Marshall in Korea

Thurgood Marshall

Letterjoy members received a letter from Thurgood Marshall from before his appointment to the Supreme Court, when he was a young lawyer for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund investigating the malicious prosecution of black GIs in Korea. Through his letters home, Letterjoy members learned about Marshall's work overturning unjust courts-martial..

Letters from President Eisenhower

Dwight D. Eisenhower

President Dwight D. Eisenhower wrote Letterjoy members to discuss his efforts to de-escalate the Cold War, D-Day, and his work as Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in Europe..

Letters from Allen W. Dulles

Allen W. Dulles

Long-time CIA Director Allen W. Dulles has written Letterjoy members to discuss notable CIA programs and operations, including the U-2 Spy Plane, Operation Paperclip, and the Bay Of Pigs invasion.

Letters from John Paul Jones

John Paul Jones

John Paul Jones, father of the American Navy, wrote Ben Franklin (and Letterjoy members) to discuss the exploits of the Bonhomme Richard, a vessel in the Continental Navy which drew its name from Franklin's famous Poor Richard's Almanac(k).

Letters from Theodore Roosevelt on the USS Maine

Theodore Roosevelt

President Theodore Roosevelt wrote Letterjoy members to discuss the explosion of the U.S.S. Maine and his time leading the Rough Riders at San Juan Hill.

Letter from General George S. Patton

George S. Patton

A young George S. Patton wrote his father (and Letterjoy members) to discuss his role in a WWI tank battle, the first mechanized battle fought by the US military.

John Brown's Raid letters

Harriet and Dangerfield Newby

Dangerfield Newby was one of five formerly enslaved men to join John Brown on his famous raid of the armory at Harper's Ferry, in the lead-up to the American Civil War. On his body, a letter was found from his wife Harriet, still enslaved, pleading for rescue. Letterjoy members received this letter as well as a note from Colonel Robert E. Lee (then serving in the US Army) to Brown demanding his surrender.

Letters from President Franklin D. Roosevelt during World War 2

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Over the years, Letterjoy members have received scores of different war-time letters and memorandums from FDR. Among the best was a top-secret letter from Roosevelt to Winston Churchill pondering the question of whether to remove General Charles de Gaulle from his post as leader of Free French Forces.

Letters from Charles Dickens

William Tudor

Lieutenant-Colonel William Tudor was the first Judge Advocate General of the Continental Army. As the soldier solely responsible for adjudicating courts-martial during the early years of the American Revolution, he struggled to keep up. George Washington's micromanagement didn't help. Nevertheless, he single-handedly set many of the precedents later enshrined in the Uniform Code of Military Justice (though many were borrowed from the British). Letterjoy members received a letter he sent to Washington plotting reforms to this nascent system.

Letters from William Jennings Bryan

William Jennings Bryan

After the sinking of the RMS Lusitania, President Woodrow Wilson pushed his advisors to demand that Germany accept responsibility and take corrective action. Secretary Of State William Jennings Bryan, fearful of escalation, pushed back. After Wilson drafted a particularly inflammatory note, Bryan threatened to resign if it was sent. Wilson didn't back down. Bryan sent the note, then resigned. Letterjoy members received Bryan's note and the German response.

Letters from other war-time leaders

And More...

We have a long list of amazing letters we look forward to sharing with you. In fact, we have so many that we had to save some for Part II - Stay tuned!

Please note: Authors are subject to change

Topics Covered In This Collection:

  • The Revolutionary War
  • The Civil War
  • The Spanish-American War
  • World War I
  • World War II
  • The Korean War
  • The Cold War
  • Courts-Martial & Military Justice
  • Military innovation
  • Conscription
  • & More.

Branches, Services, & Agencies Covered In This Collection:

  • The Continental Army
  • The Continental Navy
  • The United States Army
  • The United States Navy
  • The United States Marine Corps
  • The United States Air Force (and Army Air Corps)
  • The United States  Coast Guard
  • The United States Merchant Marine.
  • The State Department
  • The Department of War
  • The Central Intelligence Agency

About "From the Vault": This collection includes a selection of the best letters on American military history from the Letterjoy archives.

If you're an existing Letterjoy member, this collection may include some letters you've received in the past.

This collection is available for a limited time and is a one-time purchase, not a subscription.