One of the U.S. Army’s most successful, yet secretive creations, was the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops, or as they called themselves, the “Ghost Army.” “Victor Dowd and the World War II Ghost Army” written by Enigma Albert and illustrated by Scott Wegener provides a glimpse into the everyday operations of the individuals that made up this deceptive group through the lens of real-life Veteran Sergeant Victor Dowd.

Unlike other military units, the “Ghost Army” was largely made up of skilled artists and sound engineers, whose mission was to effectively deceive German soldiers. As you read, try and look for clues while using the spy craft tools included to see if you can uncover Victor’s secret message and find his missing sketchbook!

Extend Your Learning:

Use these comprehension questions with your kids or students to build their literacy skills! Print this PDF for your classroom or home.

  1. What is the main idea of the story? What details let us know that this is the main idea? 
  2. What company was Victor a part of? What was their main job?
  3. What were the names of some of the divisions they were instructed to imitate?
  4. What did Victor and his fellow soldiers do in their free time after the war had ended, but before they went home? 
  5. Why was the work of the “Ghost Army” important? What significant impacts did they have?
  6. State your opinion: What is something you are good at, and how do you think you could use that to help a team out in a time of need?  

This book is available at the Columbus Metropolitan Library, as well as at the NVMM Museum Exchange. Visit the NVMM to see the traveling exhibition, “Ghost Army: The Combat Con Artists of World War II,” on view through August 25.

TUES-SUN 10 A.M. - 5 P.M.
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