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A new online presentation from the Library, "World War II Military Situation Maps," documents troop positions from June 6, 1944, to July 26, 1945. The presentation is one of more than 135 thematic presentations in the American Memory Web site.

General Omar Bradley, half-length portrait, seated, facing left HQ Twelfth Army Group situation map, 1944

Starting with the D-Day Invasion, the maps give daily details on the military campaigns in Western Europe, showing the progress of the Allied Forces as they push toward Germany.  Some of the sheets are accompanied by a declassified "G-3 Report" giving detailed information on troop positions for the period March 3 through July 26, 1945.  These maps and reports were used by the commanders of the United States forces in their evaluation of the campaigns and for planning future strategies.

The collection consists of 416 printed maps and 115 reports, the originals of which are in the custody of the Library of Congress' Geography and Map Division.

The collection provides interesting insights into U.S. Army operations in northwestern Europe during World War II.  Each map is a cartographic snapshot that preserves the day-by-day deployment of Allied and Axis forces as understood by the operations staff (G-3) of the First United States Army Group (FUSAG) and, later, the 12th Army Group.

By browsing through the maps, researchers can easily follow the Western Allies' progress in Europe through the movements of the unit symbols and the frontline. Even the casual browser's eye can identify significant battles by the concentrations of unit symbols on the maps.

However, the situation maps have greater significance beyond their use as an easily interpreted display of the Western Front operations during World War II.  In addition to providing the general scope of the campaign, the situation maps specifically provide excellent primary source information that reflects the incomplete and inaccurate information available to the operational commander, Gen. Omar N. Bradley, and his planning staff during the campaign.  Users can zoom in on these digitized maps and view details not easily seen with the naked eye.

Twenty-seven presentations in American Memory relate to war and the military. The list of all of them includes maps from the Revolutionary and Civil wars, public reactions to the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, Ansel Adams' photographs of the Japanese internment camps during World War II and films from the Spanish-American War.

A. [General Omar Bradley, half-length portrait, seated, facing left], ca. 1950. Prints and Photographs Division. Reproduction information: Reproduction No.: LC-USZ62-94489 (b&w film copy neg.); Call No.: BIOG FILE - Bradley, Omar [P&P]

B. [June 6, 1944], HQ Twelfth Army Group situation map, 1944. Geography and Map Division. Reproduction information: See