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March 10, 2009

Christine Webb
For The Salvation Army


New Work Notes Contributions of African-Americans and Poses Alternative Beginning of The Salvation Army USA

Author Warren L. Maye and wife (in suits) with Salvation Army officers (in uniform) Soldiers of Uncommon Valor book display

West Nyack, NY ( - As Booker T. Washington noted in 1896, the work of The Salvation Army was welcome in the southern United States because it "draws no color line in religion." The same trials and tribulations that would affect the rest of the nation, however, would also be reflected in The Salvation Army through time.

Author Warren Maye's unflinching resolve to bring the truths of the organization to light includes candid looks at racism, an alternative account of The Salvation Army's founding in America and anecdotes of how black Americans affected by slavery were served by and contributed to the growth of The Salvation Army USA. This historical overview is the result of eight years of steady research, which follows Maye's more than 100 other articles documenting various historical aspects of the African-American experience and highlighting contributions of people of color. By turns provocative and uplifting, Soldiers of Uncommon Valor is now being shared publicly to expose yet more truths of black history in America.

The discoveries within Soldiers of Uncommon Valor are "another well-kept secret that add to the pride of being an African-American and a Christian," says community activist Merle Petersen George of Spring Valley, New York. "I have gone to great lengths to affirm the credibility, authenticity, and accuracy of each account," says Maye, "and I have attempted to tell the story of black Salvationists from their own perspectives..."

Maye shared the personal stories he uncovered during Black History Month and will continue touring and speaking at least until the conclusion of National Salvation Army Week (May 11-17), engaging with students, educators, religious enthusiasts and history buffs on a face-to-face basis. In keeping with the revolutionary content of the book, Maye is most interested in increasing grassroots awareness.

"Documentation dating back to 1872 shows that people of color added something special to Salvation Army ministry," says Maye. "The book is designed to take you on a fascinating journey through distinct eras in Salvation Army and African-American history. As you meet the many people woven throughout this text, perhaps you will recognize yourself among them."

About Author Warren Maye: Warren L. Maye, B.F.A., M.A., is Editor and a contributing writer for Good News!, a monthly news magazine of The Salvation Army USA Eastern Territory. He is also a contributing editor and writer for Priority!, a quarterly magazine about people touched by The Salvation Army's work nationwide. Warren Maye has chronicled The Salvation Army's work for 27 years while serving at various levels within the organization. He has worked in publishing for more than 30 years and has designed history textbooks for Harper & Row Publishers (now HarperCollins) as well as other companies. Other books he has co-authored are Orita: Rites of Passage for youth of African Descent in America (2000), which was written in partnership with his wife, Dr. Marilyn Maye, and When Your Whole World Changes (2004), which is published by the International Bible Society.

About Others Press: Others Press is the official publishing house of The Salvation Army USA Eastern Territory. Several contemporary Christian books are available through Others Press to date, with the next release, Will You Choose Joy?, anticipated for release in March 2009.

About The Salvation Army: The Salvation Army is an evangelical part of the universal Christian church that has been serving mankind without discrimination since 1865. Nearly 33 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a broad array of social services for people of all ages. About 82 cents of every dollar raised is used to support these services in nearly 9,000 communities nationwide. For more information, visit

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