It Tolled For New Mexico

New Mexicans Captured by the Japanese 1941–1945.

Eva Jane Matson. Yucca Tree Press, 1994.

 

This book is a hybrid that divides itself equally between historical narrative and detailed listings of New Mexicans who were prisoners of war in WWII. It provides a context for understanding the impact of the Bataan legacy on New Mexico. Albeit cursory and sparse at times in its treatment of the historical narrative, it is nonetheless a basic research tool and reference for those interested in the details of this military campaign. It provides for the identification of the volunteers of the 200th Coastal Artillery Unit, and discusses the continuing impact of this episode upon the communities of New Mexico through the informal and formal efforts of various organizations.

 

Judging from the manner in which this book is organized, the author shares the fruits of a process in researching documents pertaining to “military ancestors.” As a self-professed “collector of history’s bits and pieces,” the book is a basic compendium of many events and episodes that have escaped most narratives on Bataan. Although the context is limited to events that were staged in New Mexico, it will hopefully prove to be a reader that is replicated for other regions of the country.

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