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The St. Mihiel Salient from 'The History of The A.E.F.' by Shipley Thomas Captain of the 26th U. S. Infantry. The St. Mihiel Offensive began on September 12, 1918.
The St. Mihiel Salient

The St. Mihiel Salient from The History of The A.E.F. by Shipley Thomas Captain of the 26th U. S. Infantry. The St. Mihiel Offensive began on September 12, 1918.

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The St. Mihiel Salient

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Thursday, September 12, 1918

"At 1 a.m. on 12 September more than 3000 artillery tubes for 4 hours fired 1.1 million shells at the Germans — the greatest single artillery bombardment in the war. Thereafter, nearly 20 divisions of the American First Army, supported by 267 light tanks under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel George C. Patton, Jr., as well as about 1400 Allied aircraft attacked the eight war-weary and understaffed German divisions of Composite Army C in the form of two sharp pincers of a set of forceps on both sides of the salient. Victory was never in doubt — especially since Ludendorff on 11 September, the day before the attack, had ordered Army Group Gallwitz to evacuate the salient in case of attack. The Americans in effect 'relieved the Germans' in the St Mihiel salient. The moral fibre of the Germans can be gauged by the fact that they received the newly arrived Austro-Hungarian 1st and 35th divisions with cries of 'war prolongers'."

Quotation Context

American Commander-in-Chief John J. Pershing launched the St. Mihiel Offensive, the war's first American offensive, on September 12, 1918. The American First Army attacked with support from the French, including their Renault tanks and British and French planes. German commander Erich Ludendorff had earlier determined the war could not be won, but was pulling back to eliminate the salient and shorten his line.


The First World War: Germany and Austria Hungary 1914-1918 by Holger H. Herwig, page 423, copyright © 1997 Holger H. Herwig, publisher: Arnold, publication date: 1997


1918-09-12, 1918, September, St. Mihiel, St. Mihiel Offensive, Patton, George C. Patton, Ludendorff, Erich Ludendorff, Gallwitz, St. Mihiel salient, St. Mihiel Salient, war-prolonger