East of Chosin

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This week I continue reading as a part of my class on Studies in U.S. Military History East of Chosin: Entrapment and Breakout in Korea, 1950 by Roy E. Appleman. In chronicles in great detail a little remembered event in the bone chilling winter of 1950 as a team of American infantry 3000 strong are caught by a surprise massing of Chinese and attacked in their position east of the Chosin Reservoir in North Korea. Only 385 survived.

The contrast between my comfortable holiday weekend in a mid-summer American suburb and the desperate events that took place east of Chosin that winter couldn’t be greater.

Entrapment and Breakout in Korea, 1950 (Texas a & M University Military History Series)

  • Author: Roy E. Appleman
  • ISBN-10: 0-89096-465-3
  • Published on: 1991-03
  • Number of items: 1
  • Binding: Paperback
  • 416 pages

A tip of my hat to Mr. Appleman (1904 – 1992) (see biography here and photo below) for an excellent piece of military history. His research and use of first person accounts is exemplary. The book is nothing short of spellbounding.

Roy E. Appleman

Roy E. Appleman (1904 – 1992)
Photo Credit: National Park Service

The 1st Marine Division fought on the west side of the Chosin Reservoir in equally desperate battle. I discovered a website that collects information about the conflicts that took place near the reservoir here. Available on the site is an essay by Patrick C. Roe (Major, USMC, Ret) about the destruction of the 31st Infantry east of Chosin. There is also a picture gallery.

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