Category archive


Before the paratroopers arrived, the bombs fell first

in Arnhem/Nijmegen/September 17
The Willemskazerne in the city center of Arnhem was completely destroyed during the bombings of September 17. (Photo: Gelders Archives.)

The air raid siren in Arnhem had already gone off several times in the morning of Sunday, September 17, but each time it had been a false alarm. But from a quarter to eleven it was a hit. Dozens of military targets in Arnhem and the surrounding area were hit by Allied bombers until approximately…

Keep Reading

The airborne landings of the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions

in Nijmegen/September 17
American paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division from a Dakota above Groesbeek on Sunday, September 17.

If everything went as planned, the tanks and ground troops of XXX Corps could advance without any problems from the south over “a carpet of airborne troops” from the Belgian border to the Rhine bridge in Arnhem. At least: that was how the British army leadership had presented the advance of the ground troops to…

Keep Reading

The Waal Bridge in Nijmegen is still firmly in German hands on September 18

in Nijmegen/September 18
Dead American paratroopers on Keizer Karelplein in Nijmegen. (Photo: Gelders Archives.)

The British at Arnhem were not the only airborne troops who encountered problems after the landings. The American paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division who had landed near Groesbeek also did not reach the objectives they were supposed to achieve on September 17 . Capturing the Waal Bridge was not at the top of the…

Keep Reading

September 19: the Allies make no progress in Nijmegen

in Nijmegen/September 19
American paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division on the Oranjesingel in Nijmegen.

Immediately after the Allied airborne landings on September 17 to capture the bridges over the Dutch rivers, the Germans decided to place the focus of their defense at Nijmegen. Here, at the bridges over the Waal, the advance of the ‘Anglo-American enemy’ would be reversed. The Germans could not use the bridge over the Rhine…

Keep Reading

The heroic crossing of the Waal river

in Nijmegen/September 20
American paratroopers climb over the dike to cross the Waal with their boats.

The Americans call it ‘The Crossing’ for short. On Wednesday, September 20, the soldiers of the 3rd Battalion of the 504th Infantry Regiment crossed the Waal in 26 canvas boats to attack the Waal Bridge near Nijmegen from the north side. General Jim Gavin of the 82nd Airborne Division had concluded the day before that…

Keep Reading

The Americans manage to capture the Waal Bridge on Wednesday evening, September 20

in Nijmegen/September 20
Nijmegen and Grave 17 - 20 September 1944: The bridge at Nijmegen after it had been captured by the 82nd (US) Airborne Division. A dead German SS officer lies where he fell during the attack. EA 38567 Part of AMERICAN (US) EMBASSY SECOND WORLD WAR PHOTOGRAPH LIBRARY: CLASSIFIED PRINT COLLECTION

In 26 canvas boats, 260 soldiers of the 504th Parachute Regiment crossed the Waal on Wednesday afternoon, September 20. Despite a smoke screen and covering fire from tanks and machine guns, there were many casualties. A total of 48 people were killed and many dozens were injured during the crossing. Major Julian Cook had fewer…

Keep Reading

The Allied advance from Nijmegen stalls just beyond Nijmegen

in Nijmegen/September 21
Destroyed Sherman tank between Nijmegen and Elst.

After the Waal Bridge in nijmegen had been captured, the tanks of XXX Corps advanced further north on Thursday, September 21, towards the besieged British airborne troops near Arnhem. The Allies did not get very far. The Germans stopped the advance after just a few kilometers. Nowadays the A325 runs between Nijmegen and Arnhem. In…

Keep Reading

The adventures of Colonel Mackenzie on the way to Nijmegen

in Nijmegen/Oosterbeek/September 23
This is what Colonel Mackenzie's escort must have looked like: a Daimler Scout Car, a few armored cars and another Scout Car.

Colonel Charles Mackenzie was General Urquhart’s chief of staff in Oosterbeek. Mackenzie had been sent south across the Rhine by Urquhart the day before to make clear to General Horrocks of XXX Corps and General Browning how dire the situation in Oosterbeek was. The British commanders at Nijmegen seemed to have no idea of ​​the…

Keep Reading

The day after the battle: exhausted airbornes recover in Nijmegen

in Nijmegen/september 26
British airborne soldiers in Nijmegen, the day after the evacuation.

More than 2,000 British soldiers were ferried across the Rhine in boats during the night of September 25 to 26. General Roy Urquhart reached Driel during the night. In Driel he went looking for General Boy Browning, his commander. But Browning was still at his headquarters in Nijmegen. The fact that he had not come…

Keep Reading

Myth: “The Allies could have reached Arnhem on Wednesday evening, September 20, without opposition.”

in Myths/Nijmegen
A British tank drives over the Waal Bridge during Operation Market Garden.

There are still many myths circulating about the Battle of Arnhem for so many decades afterwards. One of those myths is that Allied tanks could have driven undisturbed to the Rhine Bridge in Arnhem on Wednesday evening, September 20, without major opposition. If the Allies had done that, they would have been able to relieve…

Keep Reading

Go to Top