Mrs. Bingham herself is no stranger to the political arena. A grand-niece of the late Governor Herbert H. Lehman of New York, she is the wife of U.S. Representative Jonathan B. Bingham (Democrat, New York). Her latest book, U Thant: The Search for Peace , was published in 1966. This article is the first in a new series that will appear frequently in AMERICAN HERITAGE . Before the Colors Fade is the title of a recent biography of General George S. Patton, Jr. and is used with the kind permission of the author, Fred Ayer, Jr., and the publisher, Houghton Mifflin.