This inspiring anthology it the first to convey the noteworthy experiences and contributions of women in the American military in their own words-from the Revolutionary War to the present wars in the Middle East. Serving with the Union Army during the Civil War as a nurse, scout, spy, and soldier, Harriet Tubman tells what it was like to be the first American woman to lead a raid against an enemy, freeing some 750 slaves. Busting gender stereotypes, Inga Fredriksen Ferris's describes how it felt to be a woman marine during World War II. Heidi Squier Kraft recounts her experiences as a lieutenant commander in the navy, deployed to Iraq as a psychologist to provide mental health care in a combat zone. In excerpts from their diaries, letters, oral histories, military depositions and testimonies, as well as from published and unpublished memoirs-generations of women reveal why and how they chose to serve their country, often breaking with social norms and at great personal peril.
Jerri Bell is a retired naval officer and the managing editor of O-Dark-Thirty, the literary journal of the Veterans Writing Project. Tracy Crow is the author of Eyes Right: Confessions from a Woman Marine (Nebraska, 2012) and On Point: A Guide to Writing the Military Story (Potomac Books, 2015).