U.S. Third Army

The U.S. Third Army gained fame during World War II while under the command of Lt. Gen. George S. Patton, Jr.  Deployed to the Western Front in the summer of 1944, Third Army executed an impressive offensive drive across France, and during the Battle of the Bulge that winter elements of Third Army disengaged from an existing fight, pivoted northward, and relieved the besieged garrison at the Belgian crossroads town of Bastogne.

Smoke billows from a generator employed at Ludwigshafen along the banks of the Rhine River. The ruins of the city of Mannheim, Germany, are visible in the background.

U.S. Third Army

Smokescreens: Fighting for Metz

By Jon Latimer

With the defeat of the German Seventh Army and the closing of the Falaise Gap in the summer of 1944, the Allies pursued the retreating enemy across France. Read more

Rocket-firing British Typhoons lay down a deadly barrage on German armor attempting to escape through the Falaise Gap in Normandy following the American breakout at St. Lo.

U.S. Third Army

Closing the Falaise Pocket

By Mike Phifer

After almost two months of bloody and desperate fighting, the Allies had failed to break through the German defenses that had been limiting their hold on Normandy since D-Day. Read more

A mannequin wearing the uniform of a technical sergeant in the American 359th Infantry Regiment mans the equipment in the Hoffmann Museum’s “radio corner.”

U.S. Third Army

Luxembourg’s Hoffman Museum

By Raymond E. Bell, Jr.

You won’t find the familiar little triangular signs, “Warnung Minen!” hanging on barbed wire today in Western Europe, with one exception. Read more

An American soldier cautiously approaches two burning vehicles that had been destroyed by a German ambush. As a scout, Private Sevel never wore equipment or heavy clothing in order to stay mobile on the battlefield.

U.S. Third Army

A Scout in Patton’s Third Army

By Kevin M. Hymel

The Messerschmitt Bf-109 fighter plane dove out of the sky with machine guns firing. The pilot’s target—a pontoon bridge being stretched across Germany’s Werra River by American engineers. Read more

GIs manhandle a 57mm anti-tank guns into position during the Battle of the Bulge.

U.S. Third Army

With Third Army Across Europe

By Christopher Miskimon

Corporal Frank Sisson spent eight freezing hours in a truck, riding through France toward Belgium. A day earlier, Frank and his fellow GIs of the 667th Field Artillery Battalion, 10th Armored Division lay comfortably billeted in a French town, warm and relatively safe. Read more

U.S. Third Army

Armored in Lorraine: Battle of Arracourt

By Arnold Blumberg

Scouts for the U.S. Third Army on foot and in armored vehicles cautiously approached the town of Luneville on the east side of the Moselle River in the rolling hills of north- eastern France on September 15, 1944. Read more

U.S. Third Army

Voices of the Bulge, Part I

By Michael Collins & Martin King

BACKSTORY: Unternehmen Wacht-am-Rhein (Operation Watch on the Rhine), better known in the West as the Battle of the Bulge, had its beginnings following the failed assassination attempt on Adolf Hitler’s life by Colonel Count Claus Schenk von Stauffenberg and a group of other high-level plotters who felt that their Führer was not only leading Germany to defeat but also its doom, and thus had to be eliminated. Read more

U.S. Third Army

Patton in Lorraine: Breaking the Moselle Line

By William E. Welsh

By mid-September 1944, the U.S. Third Army was poised to strike at the soft underbelly of Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich along a fabled corridor in northeastern France used for centuries by armies tramping across Europe. Read more