photo sharing and upload picture albums photo forums search pictures popular photos photography help login
nuthatch | profile | all galleries >> France >> Meuse-Argonne WWI Battlefields tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Meuse-Argonne WWI Battlefields

A visit to a few of the villages in eastern France where Jay's grandfather served with the American Expeditionary Force in 1918 alongside French soldiers near the end of WWI, and several of the nearby sites where French and German soldiers had fought for the four preceding years.
memorials to the soldiers of the Grande Guerre are everywhere in this area...
memorials to the soldiers of the Grande Guerre are everywhere in this area...
...here, a French military cemetery near Brieulles-sur-Meuse
...here, a French military cemetery near Brieulles-sur-Meuse
on the Grande Montagne above Sivry-sur-Meuse...
on the Grande Montagne above Sivry-sur-Meuse...
...an American memorial to soldiers of the 316th Infantry of the 79th Division AEF
...an American memorial to soldiers of the 316th Infantry of the 79th Division AEF
a monument erected by the state of Pennsylvania at Nantillois
a monument erected by the state of Pennsylvania at Nantillois
in the distance, the American monument on the butte of Montfaucon-d'Argonne
in the distance, the American monument on the butte of Montfaucon-d'Argonne
the ruins of the monastery on Montfaucon; in front, a former German observation tower made from stones of the church
the ruins of the monastery on Montfaucon; in front, a former German observation tower made from stones of the church
the Montfaucon monument
the Montfaucon monument
Jay next to a marker for the 29th AEF, his grandfather's division...
Jay next to a marker for the 29th AEF, his grandfather's division...
...with notes of where they fought
...with notes of where they fought
inside the monument
inside the monument
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154785.w2mPRceH.jpg
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154788.qu1Luoi7.jpg from the observation deck, Marla looks rather tiny
from the observation deck, Marla looks rather tiny
looking out over the church ruins...
looking out over the church ruins...
...and in the distance, the American cemetery
...and in the distance, the American cemetery
in the rebuilt village of Montfaucon, France honors its dead...
in the rebuilt village of Montfaucon, France honors its dead...
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154798.NkvfwmNW.jpg ...and thanks the 'Sammies' from the US who fought there in 1918
...and thanks the 'Sammies' from the US who fought there in 1918
at the American military cemetery in Romagne-sous-Montfaucon
at the American military cemetery in Romagne-sous-Montfaucon
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154804.4OxWCohd.jpg t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154806.soEIxz3p.jpg more than 14 thousand soldiers are buried here...
more than 14 thousand soldiers are buried here...
...in the largest American cemetery abroad...
...in the largest American cemetery abroad...
...including many whose identity cannot be known
...including many whose identity cannot be known
at the top of the site, a sober memorial
at the top of the site, a sober memorial
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154816.QRhrUWaY.jpg stained glass windows include the insignia of the divisions (the 29th is at center, second row from the bottom)
stained glass windows include the insignia of the divisions (the 29th is at center, second row from the bottom)
on an exterior wall, the names of those whose bodies were never found
on an exterior wall, the names of those whose bodies were never found
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154823.58hrvGWW.jpg a map of the final engagements by division
a map of the final engagements by division
just outside the village, a well-kept German military cemetery...
just outside the village, a well-kept German military cemetery...
...one of many nearby
...one of many nearby
we are staying in Dun-sur-Meuse, a riverside village with a 12th-c. church on the hill above
we are staying in Dun-sur-Meuse, a riverside village with a 12th-c. church on the hill above
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154836.8BvDj9uN.jpg t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154838.gToFdspb.jpg
the bridge in town is named for General Pershing...
the bridge in town is named for General Pershing...
...and carries a remembrance of the 5th Division AEF which pushed the front forward thru here
...and carries a remembrance of the 5th Division AEF which pushed the front forward thru here
at this same location, the French divisions who fought here are also remembered...
at this same location, the French divisions who fought here are also remembered...
...as well as the German soldiers who died here...
...as well as the German soldiers who died here...
...in a small but tidy cemetery
...in a small but tidy cemetery
above the village of Dun-sur-Meuse, the antique church
above the village of Dun-sur-Meuse, the antique church
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154958.BDxNkFP2.jpg the church has an outstanding view down the Meuse river valley
the church has an outstanding view down the Meuse river valley
one of many markers for the US 5th Division along the Meuse
one of many markers for the US 5th Division along the Meuse
with his unit, the 104th Engineers, Jay's grandfather passed thru Cumières...
with his unit, the 104th Engineers, Jay's grandfather passed thru Cumières...
...which before the war had been a village of 200+ people...
...which before the war had been a village of 200+ people...
...but by 1917 was one of eight villages in the 'red zone' completely destroyed...
...but by 1917 was one of eight villages in the 'red zone' completely destroyed...
...and is today memorialized by a marker made from stones of the leveled buildings
...and is today memorialized by a marker made from stones of the leveled buildings
Marre, another village where Jay's grandfather worked...
Marre, another village where Jay's grandfather worked...
...today, a quiet place
...today, a quiet place
Charny-sur-Meuse, another beautiful village where Jay's grandfather served
Charny-sur-Meuse, another beautiful village where Jay's grandfather served
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146154990.Uo8XSS6J.jpg on the route to Chattancourt, part of a major road-building effort by the 104th Engineers...
on the route to Chattancourt, part of a major road-building effort by the 104th Engineers...
...to support the movement of American troops and equipment to the front
...to support the movement of American troops and equipment to the front
but also the site of repeated French battles in the years before...
but also the site of repeated French battles in the years before...
...leaving many dead...
...leaving many dead...
...of all faiths
...of all faiths
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155008.QOiL95ii.jpg t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155012.fEQE2dE8.jpg
outside Chattancourt, two springs were chosen as memorials to local sons killed in action near here
outside Chattancourt, two springs were chosen as memorials to local sons killed in action near here
on the road to the Mort-Homme...
on the road to the Mort-Homme...
...a hill and forest famous for trench and tunnel warfare between French and German forces
...a hill and forest famous for trench and tunnel warfare between French and German forces
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155022.slw6jCWH.jpg
the monuments today mourn the dead on both sides...
the monuments today mourn the dead on both sides...
...and the surrounding woods still give up artifacts of the war
...and the surrounding woods still give up artifacts of the war
now we are in Avocourt, where the 104th Engineers worked around the clock to repair damaged roads
now we are in Avocourt, where the 104th Engineers worked around the clock to repair damaged roads
a smaller road out of town leads to...
a smaller road out of town leads to...
...another French military graveyard in a quiet setting...
...another French military graveyard in a quiet setting...
...overlooking fields of corn and other grains
...overlooking fields of corn and other grains
in the distance, the Montfaucon monument
in the distance, the Montfaucon monument
here is pretty Samogneux, another important village for road-building in WWI
here is pretty Samogneux, another important village for road-building in WWI
before the war, the village had lined the main riverside road...
before the war, the village had lined the main riverside road...
...but it was destroyed by battles in and around
...but it was destroyed by battles in and around
after the war, the village was rebuilt on adjacent land
after the war, the village was rebuilt on adjacent land
the next village north is Brabant-sur-Meuse, also part of the roadworks
the next village north is Brabant-sur-Meuse, also part of the roadworks
several springs emerge around town now
several springs emerge around town now
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155203.fzB9m9rF.jpg the village of Consenvoye was in the midst of late war fighting
the village of Consenvoye was in the midst of late war fighting
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155211.2gMO1q5i.jpg
the Meuse and the Canal de l'Est slowly pass thru town
the Meuse and the Canal de l'Est slowly pass thru town
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155219.m24XfThg.jpg here's the road between Consenvoye and Damvillers...
here's the road between Consenvoye and Damvillers...
...where the 29th Infantry saw its heaviest fighting just two weeks before the war ended
...where the 29th Infantry saw its heaviest fighting just two weeks before the war ended
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155233.WBCAtRXT.jpg here's the Bois de Consenvoye, one of three named battles
here's the Bois de Consenvoye, one of three named battles
this road leads to...
this road leads to...
...the Molleville Farm, another named battle of the 29th AEF
...the Molleville Farm, another named battle of the 29th AEF
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155248.xuEJHdw7.jpg and here's the village of Étraye, adjacent to the woods named for another battle
and here's the village of Étraye, adjacent to the woods named for another battle
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155257.y2pkqXlv.jpg as everywhere in the region, sons of this village are honored for their sacrifice
as everywhere in the region, sons of this village are honored for their sacrifice
at last we reach Damvillers
at last we reach Damvillers
here is the French & German ossuary at Douaumont, holding the remains of over 200 thousand unknown Verdun dead...
here is the French & German ossuary at Douaumont, holding the remains of over 200 thousand unknown Verdun dead...
...and its adjacent cemetery of over 15 thousand graves
...and its adjacent cemetery of over 15 thousand graves
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155278.iNjH4Tig.jpg
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155285.8b2jzGez.jpg we pass another destroyed village (Fleury), left to regrow as woodland and a memorial
we pass another destroyed village (Fleury), left to regrow as woodland and a memorial
Jay's grandfather passed thru Verdun twice, en route to worksites in the area
Jay's grandfather passed thru Verdun twice, en route to worksites in the area
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155301.DqVheQEv.jpg
here is Récicourt, another road-building site behind the front
here is Récicourt, another road-building site behind the front
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155310.EqnPKmzo.jpg we pause in the rebuilt village of Vauquois...
we pause in the rebuilt village of Vauquois...
...site of a horrific series of battles around, in, and under the butte
...site of a horrific series of battles around, in, and under the butte
the original village stood on this mount
the original village stood on this mount
the church and all village buildings were destroyed in a series of bomb blasts from tunnels under the streets...
the church and all village buildings were destroyed in a series of bomb blasts from tunnels under the streets...
...which also took the lives of hundreds of men
...which also took the lives of hundreds of men
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155334.b20D7o3o.jpg
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146155338.2POqTnb8.jpg today the butte is split in two by the destruction
today the butte is split in two by the destruction
finally, we visit Haudainville...
finally, we visit Haudainville...
...another of the villages Jay's grandfather saw
...another of the villages Jay's grandfather saw
here, some of the French dead are buried in the communal cemetery...
here, some of the French dead are buried in the communal cemetery...
...but there is also a small military cemetery across the road
...but there is also a small military cemetery across the road
t1%2f66%2f607666%2f4%2f146171425.3DlFIpiT.jpg this scene from the war captures the period rather well...
this scene from the war captures the period rather well...