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From the Editor

Joyelle Soucier
ProofandPen LLC, Harleysville PA November 2023

Almost three decades ago, Edward Blomstedt, an avid reader, began collecting West Point Military Academy fiction as his oldest son entered the Academy as a plebe. It wasn’t long until he learned that his collection had surpassed what the West Point library had to offer their cadets and colleagues. While the United States Military Academy (USMA) cadets receive a free education (though not an easy journey!), parents and graduates are always looking for ways to give back to the institution who helped them excel in leadership and vocation. By 2012, Ed knew he would one day give his growing collection to West Point.

In the spring of 2020, Ed decided it was just about time to make his donation but believed that the collection would have greater impact on a wider audience if it accompanied a descriptive book, including annotations, pictures, and noteworthy facts about each of the collection’s contents. Thus, a book began its life; and for the past 20 months, I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Ed, editing his book, and learning so many Army and West Point details along the way.

This past weekend was the culmination of all his hard work, and I had the honor and privilege of seeing Ed’s passion project come to fruition. Not only did he donate his collection of 600+ items to the West Point Library and Archives (in honor of the Class of 1998), but he accompanied it with his latest published book, Grip Hands Thru the Shadows. The USMA Library and Archives’ staff welcomed Ed’s collection with a dedication and wonderful display of significant and unique items from the collection.

West Point was thrilled to receive this donation as it will be incorporated into future Academy curriculum and will stand as a valuable research resource for all academia.


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