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Title Page || 1: Cast of Characters: Birth of the US War Department General Staff, 1898-1916

Several individuals have made this thesis possible. My parents did much over the years to satiate my curiosity, whether my interests focused on fossils, stars or humanity's past. I would like to thank Dr. Michael L. Seewer of Fairborn High School for introducing me to the promise of history. I am indebted to Dr. William N. Denman and all involved with the Society of Yeager Scholars at Marshall University, who provided me with a solid undergraduate education more than sufficient to carry me on to graduate school. I must also express my appreciation to the staffs of the Library of Congress Manuscript Division, the National Archives and the James E. Morrow Library at Marshall University, including Patricia Delnero, Ron Titus, Becky Goodman and a woman I know only through her numerous messages on my answering machine as "Wendy from interlibrary loan." I extend my thanks to Dr. Charles Bias and Dr. Frances Hensley for their patient and enlightening criticism, and of course to Dr. David R. Woodward, whose confidence has opened several opportunities for me and through whose mentorship I have learned the joy of research and the dangers of Szechuan Chinese food. Finally, I am most appreciative of my loving wife, Diane, whose gentle tauntings of "history is bunk" serve to remind that all historiography is written in sand rather than stone. Any errors of fact or interpretation exist in spite of the efforts of these individuals and others, and thus are my own.