A 10th Mountain Division soldier in February 1945 standing below Riva Ridge in Italy's Northern Apennine Mountains.

Maurice Isserman, the Publius Virgilius Rogers Professor of History, will be offering an illustrated talk, and signing copies of his just-published book, The Winter Army: The 10th Mountain Division in World War II, on Wednesday, Nov. 6, at 4:15 p.m., in the Burke Library.

The event is free and open to the public.


An exhibit of World War II artifacts associated with the 10th Mountain Division, will be unveiled. The exhibit commemorates the memory of the late Donald Potter, emeritus professor of geology at Hamilton College, and 10th Mountain veteran. Located in the library lobby, the exhibition will be on display from November 6 to the end of February.

The 10th Mountain Division

The 10th Mountain Division was formed days before the United States entered World War II in 1941. A volunteer unit, its ranks were filled by men who in civilian life were already proficient in skiing, mountaineering, and other outdoor skills. Shipped to the Italian front, 75 years ago at the end of 1944 and the beginning of 1945, the 10th led the Allied offensive that broke through the last German defensive lines in the Northern Apennine Mountains in the winter and spring of 1945, and drove on to the Alps, forcing the German surrender in Italy on May 2. 

After the war, thousands of veterans of the 10th played a leading role in the expansion of the U.S. ski industry. The division was disbanded in late 1945, but reestablished in the 1980s, and is based today at Fort Drum, in Watertown, New York. Some of the artifacts on display were loaned to the library’s Special Collections office by the 10th Mountain museum at Fort Drum.

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