Ms. Lida S. Mayo was born in Columbus, Mississippi on March 11, 1904 and earned her undergraduate degree at Randolph-Macon Women's College in 1924. She originally came to Washington as an employee of the Library of Congress, then joined the Military Air Transportation Command as a historian in 1947.
Between 1941 and 1950, she published several acclaimed biographies and historical studies focusing on 19th Century America. During the early 1950's, she was a historian with the Ordnance Corps in Washington. From 1956 to 1959, she was an Ordnance Historian with the Army's Center of Military History, and for 12 years, Chief of the Historical Branch, Center of Military History.
She retired in 1971 as a GS-14. Her writings of World War II are immortalized in the Ordnance Department book series known as "The Green Books." Her description of complex technical issues in highly readable prose has made these texts indispensable to all Ordnance men and women.
Following her retirement, she completed her book Bloody Buna in 1974. This volume described the accomplishments of Ordnance personnel attached to the 32d Infantry Division during the New Guinea campaign in 1942. The book has become a military history classic in the U.S. and was a best seller in Australia. Ms. Mayo died in 1978.