Patton's Third Army in World War II: A Photographic History.

AuthorWilley, Scott A.
PositionBook review

Patton's Third Army in World War II: A Photographic History. By Michael Green and James D. Brown. Minneapolis Minn.: Zenith, 2013. Maps. Photographs. Appendix. Bibliography. Index. Pp. 288. $24.99 paperback ISBN: 978-0-7603-4557-3

Many books have been written about Gen. George S. Patton, Jr., and Third Army's exploits in Europe during World War II. As a long-time admirer of the general and his troops, I was interested in reading this latest coverage of what he and Third Army accomplished--and it is limited to the July 1944 to May 1945 period. I was also interested to see how this book covered the marriage of Third Army with Maj. Gen. Otto P. Weyland's XIX Tactical Air Command (TAC), one of the greatest examples of ground and air cooperation in the war.

This book really offers no new insight into the operations of Third Army from its breakout from Normandy, through the capture of Brittany, its juggernaut across France, the mid-winter attack to the north during the Battle of the Bulge, and the final thrust into Germany and Czechoslovakia. The authors used most of the standard references to frame the story: Patton's own War As I Knew It, Blumenson's The Patton Papers, Province's The Unknown Patton, Essame's Patton: A Study in Command, D'Este's Patton: A Genius for War, and others. But what is really unique about this treatise on Third Army is the photographic coverage. The book does exactly what the authors promised in the subtitle--provided a photographic history. And what a collection of photos it is! By scorning the National Archives' and the General George Patton Museum's holdings and pursuing leads through other organizations and individuals, Green and Brown put together a very good story. If one didn't want to read the book's text, a reader could get a pretty good idea of the story of Third Army just by looking at the pictures and reading their...

To continue reading

Request your trial