Guide to the Eugene B. Sledge Papers, RG 96

Listed by: Dieter C. Ullrich
Date: August 2003

Date Span:

15.0 cubic feet.

Number of Boxes:
4 legal document boxes; 1 1/2 legal document box; 10 record center boxes; 4 oversized boxes & folders; and 1 document tube.

Historical or Biographical Sketch:
This collection consists of materials on the life and career of Eugene B. Sledge.

Eugene Bondurant Sledge was born on November 4, 1923 in Mobile, Alabama. He graduated from Murphy High School in Mobile in May 1942 and entered Marion Military Institute (MMI) in Marion, Alabama, that fall. Sledge enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in December 1942 at MMI and was eventually assigned to Company K, 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment, 1st Marine Division (K-3-5). He served in the Pacific Theater where he saw action at Peleliu and Okinawa. After the war, Sledge attended Alabama Polytechnic Institute (now Auburn University) where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in the summer of 1949. He returned to Auburn in 1953 where he worked as a research assistant until 1955; that same year he graduated from A.P.I. with a Master of Science degree in Botany. From 1956 to 1960 he attended the University of Florida and worked as a research assistant. He received his doctorate in biology from the University of Florida in 1960. He was employed by the Division of Plant Industries for the Florida State Department of Agriculture from 1959 to 1962. In the summer of 1962, Dr. Sledge was appointed Assistant Professor of Biology at Alabama College (now the University of Montevallo). In 1970 he became a professor in the Department of Biology at the University of Montevallo, a position he held until his retirement in 1990.

In 1981, Dr. Sledge published an account of his experiences during the Second World War in a book entitled "With the Old Breed: at Peleliu and Okinawa". "With the Old Breed" is now widely recognized as a classic war memoir.

Dr. Sledge died on March 3, 2001. A second memoir, "China Marine: An Infantryman's Life after World War II", was published posthumously in 2002.

Scope and Content:
The collection contains personal materials, correspondence, professional items related to Eugene B. Sledge's academic career, photographs, clippings, book reviews, article drafts, periodicals, books, and video cassettes. The major portion of these materials relate to Dr. Sledge's book With the Old Breed at Peleliu and Okinawa, and his experiences in World War II. Includes artifacts from World War II and a small set of letters from various persons to Dr. Sledge, mostly concerning his writings on World War II. The artifacts consist of uniforms, equipment, flags, and items gathered from battlefields in the Pacific. Many of the items are Japanese. Also included are uniform items worn by his father, a medical officer in World War I and essays, poems, and letters by Eugene Sledge's Grandmother Sturdivant. Sturdivant was Dean of Women at Huntington for several years. The final addition contains ten years of letters, reviews and photographs (1990-2000) from various persons to Dr. Sledge, mostly concerning his writings on World War II.

Item list:
Accession number: 96-038
Box 1

Box 2 Box 3 Box 4 Box 5
Accession Number: 97-005
Box 1 Box 2 Box 3 Box 4 Box 5
Accession Number: 97-048
Box 1 Box 2 Box 3 Box 4 Box 5 Box 6 Box 7 Folder
Accession Number: 98-069
Box 1
Accession Number: 98-091
Box 1 Box 2 Box 3
Accession Number: 00-004
Box 1

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