Lucky Forward: The History of Patton's Third U.S. Army

New York: The Vanguard Press, Inc., 1947. Second Printing. Hardcover. 424, illus., maps, endpaper maps, glossary, index, boards soiled and scuffed, small tears at spine, small sticker residue ins rear bd. Inscribed by the author. Robert Sharon Allen (July 14, 1900 – February 23, 1981) was a Washington D.C. correspondent and Washington bureau chief for The Christian Science Monitor. In 1931, with Drew Pearson, he anonymously co-authored Washington Merry-Go-Round (New York, H. Liveright) and More Merry-Go-Round and later wrote the daily column of the same title. He was a veteran of World War I and served on General Patton's staff in World War II. IIn 1947, he edited the book, Our Fair City, an expose of corrupt conditions in American municipalities. He also wrote Lucky Forward: The History of Patton's Third Army. Papers concerning his military career reside in the George S. Patton Museum at Fort Knox, Kentucky.

He died in Georgetown, Washington, D.C. from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Allen, who had cancer, had ended his journalism career when his illness made it impossible for him to work. The Third Army was officially created on the 15th of November, 1918, four days after the First World War Armistice was signed in Europe. On the 2nd of July 1919, the Third Army was deactivated and it's units and personnel were renamed to American Forces Germany. Thirteen years later, in 1932, the Army reorganized it's forces within the continental United States. There were only 48 states at that time, Hawaii and Alaska being added in the late 1950's. Third Army was located in the Southeast section. It's headquarters alternated between Atlanta, Georgia and Fort Sam Houston,

On New Year's Eve 1943, the Third Army was put on alert for overseas movement. They would travel to England where they would train for participation in the coming European invasions. When the staff of the Third Army docked at Glasgow, Scotland, they were met by their new commanding general, Lieutenant General George S. Patton, Jr. He explained to them, "I'm your new commander. I'm glad to meet you. I hope it's mutual. There's a lot of work to be done and there's little time to do it. There's a special train waiting on the dock to take you to our Command Post. We will leave in one hour." The day after the staff were safely in their guarded billets, all of the men, enlisted and officers, were assembled on the large terrace in front of Peover Hall, Patton's headquarters. Peover Hall was a private residence near Knutsford, England which had been turned over to the military for the duration of the war. Patton stood before his men, wearing a tailored, form-fitting, brass buttoned battle jacket with four rows of battle ribbons and decorations. He also wore whipcord riding breeches, and polished, high-topped cavalry boots with spurs. Around his waist he wore a wide, hand-tooled leather belt which had a large, shiny brass buckle with the metal letters U.S. embossed on it. It was the old style cavalry buckle Patton had worn as a young lieutenant. He held in his hand a long riding crop with a hidden sword in it. On his shoulders, his shirt collar, and on his helmet, were a total of fifteen large stars. As usual, General Patton gave a short talk. He said, "I've been given command of the Third Army for reasons which will become clear later on. I'm here because of the confidence of two men; the President of the United States and the Theater Commander. They have confidence in me because ... they know I mean business when I fight. I don't fight for fun and I won't tolerate anyone on my staff who does." "We're here because some crazy Germans decided they were supermen and that they had a right to rule the world. They've been pushing people around all over the world, looting, killing, and abusing millions of innocent men, women, and children. They were getting ready to do the same thing to us. We have to fight to protect ourselves." "Another reason we're here is to defeat and wipe out the Nazis who started all of this trouble. If you don't like to fight, I don't want you around. You had better get out before I kick you out. There's one thing you have to remember. In war, it takes more than the desire to fight to win. You've got to have more than guts to lick the enemy. You also must have brains. It takes brains and guts to win wars. A man with guts but no brains is only half a soldier. We whipped the Germans in Africa and Sicily because we had brains as well as guts. We're going to lick them in Europe for that same reason." Reduced to cold, statistical figures, the feats of the Third Army were astonishing. The Army liberated or captured 81,522 square miles of territory. An estimated 12,000 cities, towns, and communities were liberated or captured, including 27 cities of more than 50,000 in population. Third Army captured 765,483 prisoners of war and an additional 515,205 of the enemy surrendered during the last week of the war. The enemy lost an estimated 1,280,688 captured, 144,500 killed, and 386,200 wounded, adding up to 1,811,388. By comparison, the Third Army suffered 16,596 killed, 96,241 wounded, and 26,809 missing in action for a total of 139,646 casualties. Third Army's losses were only 12.97 percent of the German losses. That is only about 13 American soldiers for every 100 German soldiers. Third Army aircraft and artillery dropped or dispersed by shell 31,552,700 psychological warfare leaflets to enemy troops. XIX Tactical Air Command completed 1,767 tactical reconnaissance missions and 77 photo reconnaissance missions which resulted in 3,205,670 aerial photographic prints being distributed.
Condition: fair to good.

Keywords: WWII, Unit History, George S. Patton, Third U.S. Army, Omar Bradley, Dwight Eisenhower, Adolf Hitler, Bernard Montgomery, Inscribed, Battle of the Bulge, Bastogne, Omar Bradley, Ardennes, Siegfried Line

[Book #42762]

Price: $125.00

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