Blue Mustang Press Publishes Les Rolston’s Book Home of the Brave
10/12/2012

In their own words about immigrant soldiers who received the medal of honor during the american civil war

Online PR News – 12-October-2012 – Boston, MA – Blue Mustang Press is proud to announce the publication of Les Rolston’s new book Home of the Brave—In Their Own Words: Immigrants Who Received The Medal Of Honor In The Civil War. The book is a collection of stories about some of the hundreds of immigrant soldiers who fought in the American Civil War.

The book offers vivid descriptions of the childhoods of these men in their native lands as well as the heroic feats performed by these ordinary soldiers during wartime. The details come largely from the Medal of Honor military files of these soldiers.

Often even more interesting than the exploits of these men is what happened to the Medal of Honor recipients after the war.  Many of the men or their widows felt abandoned by the very government they sought to preserve in their declining years. The book includes doctors' reports to the government vividly describing the toll the war took on these bodies of these heroes, but not on their spirit. As one of the soldiers profiled in the book, Franz Frey, a German immigrant, proclaimed to the pension bureau after being denied an increase in his pension near the end of his life: "I will not beg a pension from the government I helped save!"

The book brings to life these often unsung heroes and shows that there is more to the War Between the States than the brother-versus-brother drama we are often shown. There was a population of those from outside this country who fought and died for her during this most internal of conflicts.

Les Rolston has studied American history for most of his adult life. His greatest interest is in the lives of ordinary people, who in times of crisis go on to do extraordinary deeds.

His first book, Lost Soul: A Confederate Soldier In New England described his efforts to preserve the unmarked grave site of a Confederate soldier buried in Rhode Island. As a result of this book Rolston gained national attention, telling his story through the Associated Press and television programs. He has received citations from the Rhode Island House of Representatives and a letter of commendation from former United States Senator Claiborne Pell. He was also awarded the Jefferson Davis Medal, the United Daughters of the Confederacy’s highest award.

Rolston has been instrumental in the recognition of other soldiers as well:
* In 1999, Rolston solved the mystery of the “soldier in the cane field” in Bayou Goula, Louisiana, when he identified Private David Ingraham, 3rd Rhode Island Cavalry, as being buried in a makeshift grave there. This grave is now marked as a Louisiana Historic site.

* In 2000, after an inquiry by 91-year old Vera Harris, Les located the grave of Marzy Van Howland Lincoln, 11th United States Heavy Artillery (Colored). In a modest ceremony, only months before her own death, Mrs. Harris visited her father’s grave for the first time.

* In 2001, Rolston secured a military burial for Harold Brown. Mr. Brown had been machine-gunned to death in a lifeboat eight miles off the coast of Virginia after his cargo ship was sunk by a German U-Boat during the opening days of World War II. After months of negotiations with the United States government, Brown, a merchant marine, was recognized as a war veteran. Acknowledging Rolston’s efforts was United States Senator Jack Reed (D) Rhode Island.

* In 2004, Les was instrumental in restoring and preserving the vandalized gravesite of General George Sears Greene, hero of Gettysburg.

In addition to his writings, Rolston serves the City of Warwick, Rhode Island (pop.85,000,) as its Building Inspector. Warwick has three Historic Districts and scores of
Colonial era buildings and cemeteries. Under Rolston’s supervision these sites are protected and preserved.

Rolston is a frequent contributor to the Providence Journal and his work has appeared in the South Reporter, Civil War Times Illustrated, Our Heritage, the New Orleans Times-Picayune and other publications.

Home of the Brave—In Their Own Words: Immigrants Who Received The Medal Of Honor In The Civil War (ISBN 9781935199144) is available at your favorite bookseller or at www.BlueMustangPress.com.