An Army Doctor on the Western Frontier: Journals and Letters of John Vance Lauderdale, 1864–1890, edited by Robert M. Utley, won the 2014 Army Historical Foundation (AHF) Distinguished Writing Award in the Journals, Memoirs, and Letters category.

The AHF honored the winners, which included six books and three articles, at the foundation’s Eighteenth Annual Members’ Meeting held recently at the Army Navy Country Club in Arlington, Va. The annual awards recognize outstanding achievements in writing on U.S. Army history.

Edited and annotated by historian Robert M. Utley, An Army Doctor on the Western Frontier presents a selection of writings by physician John Vance Lauderdale. Assigned to the District of Utah during the Civil War, Lauderdale spent the next 25 years on army posts in the American West, serving in California, Arizona, New Mexico, South Dakota, and Texas. Throughout his career he kept a detailed journal and sent long letters home to his sister in upstate New York. Lauderdale’s observations offer valuable insight into army life and the settlement and growth of the West in a time of rapid change.

Utley, formerly the chief historian of the National Park Service, is the author of many distinguished books on the history of the American West, including Geronimo.

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