Donald Thomas War Poetry Collection
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Donald Thomas, a native Texan, enlisted in the U.S. Navy at the age of 17 and was deployed to Vietnam in 1968, where he served as part of a Medical Unit Self-Contained Transportable ONE. He was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal with Combat “V” for his service in Vietnam. In 1972, Mr. Thomas earned his Master’s degree in Library and Information Sciences from the University of North Texas. He retired from the Navy in 1986 to pursue his interest in librarianship, which allowed him to work at Baylor Health Science Library, Texas A&M University, and the Harris County Public Library System.
The Donald Thomas War Poetry Collection was acquired in 2015, and consists of over 1,000 volumes collected over 40 years. The Collection focuses on English and American poetry spanning the period from the American Civil War to the Iraq War. The Collection contains a number of reference volumes, biographies, and histories related to war poetry. The majority of the Collection is focused on World War I and contains many important names and titles from the time period including works by Rupert Brooke, Wilfred Owen, and Siegfried Sassoon. The greatest strength of this collection, though, is the number of works by lesser known war poets whose works have become difficult if not impossible to find today. Special Collections and UNT English Faculty created The Lost Generation: World War I Poetry exhibit to highlight these strengths.