Maginot Line at War 1939-1940

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References and Links

"Be as careful of the books you read, as of the company you keep, for your habits and character will be as much influenced by the former as the latter."
     Paxton Hood (1820-1885), English Clergyman

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Casemate on the bank of the Rhine River (NARA)

Links to Related Sites
 
The Maginot Line has a significant presence on the Internet.  The following websites are ones we find most informative:
 
A multi-language site describing the history of Fort (Petit Ouvrage) Kerfent and the other fortifications of Fortified Sector Faulquemont attacked by the German 167th Infantry Division.
 

A web site with recent photographs of a renovated interval casemate fully equipped with the weapons and equipment used by French fortress troops in 1940.

 

An extensive site multi-language website that details Fortress (Gros Ouvrage) Schoenenbourg and the other Maginot Line fortifications in northern Alsace.  The site includes a large database of recent photos of the Maginot Line plus many historical first-hand accounts by French combatants.

 

A multi-language site describing the history of Fortress (Gros Ouvrage) Fermont which was unsuccessfully attacked by the German 183rd Infantry Division.

 

A French language site describing the design and history of Fortress Michelsberg which was unsuccessfully attacked by the German 95th Infantry Division. 

 

A French and English language site that describes several fortified works in the Thionville area; including nice videos of the workings and machinery of a typical Maginot Line fortress.
 
An English language site describing the development, design, and function of the Maginot Line.
 

A multi-language webpage of the Maginot Line.  The site includes a description of the Alpes Maritimes Fortified Sector and Fortress (Gros Ouvrage) Sainte-Agnes located near France's border with Italy.

 

The battle history of the U.S. 44th Infantry Division in World War II.  The site includes a description of the division’s attack on Fortress (Gros Ouvrage)Simserhof in December 1944.

 

Interesting essay about US Army battles against the German forces occupying the Maginot Line in 1944.
 
 

When viewing foreign language sites, consider using Altavista's translation website http://world.altavista.com.  Although use of Babel Fish or other similar sites can result in confusing, or perhaps even amusing, translations, much can be still be gained if you do not read too much into the translated text.

Books about the Maginot Line
 
Most histories of the Line are written in French.  That situation not withstanding, here are some recommended works that are currently in print: 

 

Blitzkrieg in the West: Then and Now by Jean Paul Pallud (London: After the Battle, 1991).  Although not exclusively devoted to the Maginot Line, this book has extensive "then and now" photographs about the Line's various fortified works and the German attacks to take them. 

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Blitzkrieg in the West: Then and Now by Jean Paul Pallud (London: After the Battle, 1991).  Although not exclusively devoted to the Maginot Line, this book has extensive "then and now" photographs about the Line's various fortified works and the German attacks to take them.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Fortress France:  The Maginot Line and French Defenses in World War II by J.E Kaufmann and H.W. Kaufmann (Connecticut: Praeger Security International, 2006).  This book primarily describes the engineering and construction of the Maginot Line.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Hommes et Ouvrages de la ligne Maginot, Tomes 1-4 by Jean-Yves Mary and Alain Hohnadel (Paris: Histoire & Collections, 2000-2009).  Although these books are written in French, the lavish illustrations and photographs stand on their own.  Tome (Volume) 3, contains an informative chapter about battles involving the Maginot Line.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Maginot Line 1928-45 by William Alcorn (United Kingdom: Osprey Publishing, 2003).  For the price, this is the best description of the Maginot Line in English.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Videos about the Maginot Line
 
After the fighting in the West ended, the Germans produced a propaganda film called Sieg im Westen (Victory in the West).  As propaganda, the film should be viewed with the understanding that its sole purpose was to extol the might of the German Army.  Despite numerous technical and factual errors, the film does include interesting footage of the Maginot Line.  To see the Maginot Line footage, try the following link:
 
Allied Movie news of the Phoney War:
 
Allied Movie news of the French Army:
 
Maginot Line documentary in five parts.  Dispite a few glaring errors and the pejorative name calling of Germans as "Boche," it is one of the few videos in English discusses German attacks against the Maginot Line. It does though, leave out notable German victories in the Maubeuge, Faulquemont, and Rohrbach sectors.
 
Extract from a British documentary with period footage of the Maginot Line: