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Reference Books & Reading Material
My Reference Books are grouped into the following categories:
CATEGORIES of BOOKS:
Combat and Unit Histories CLICK TO GO
Biographies and Specific Topics CLICK TO GO
Mussolini & The Fascists CLICK TO GO
Pamphlets & WW2-era Publications CLICK TO GO
Official Records, Photos, Maps & Other - Archived Material CLICK TO GO
General WW2 Manuls & Material - Softbound CLICK TO GO
These books are listed in no particular order as a quick guide for anyone who is searching material on the Italian Campaign from 1943-1945. The brief description is intended to help the reader determine if this is the book that is needed for their library. Some of the unit history books written at the end of the war are sanitized, meaning there are few references to US losses or casualties. I will be glad to provide a better description or any information from these books to assist in your research.
Many of these books are printed prior to 1965. Except for the booklets, very few are paperbacks. The booklets and manuals of last two categories are paperbacks issued to troops during the war. I've color-coded the Titles to indicate which books were printed before the end of the war, as follows:
Book Titles(in purple)= printed during or immediately after the War
Book Titles(in green)= printed after the war. However, some are modern reprints of older books.
Book Titles(in red)= Published after 1999. Books that you can buy now to build your library.
softbound = indicates softbound versions of the book.
91st Division = Units are hightlighted in text for quick reference.
Explanation of my review comments:
History - A good historical account of events of the war. Should be easy to read & not dry.
Unit History - A detailed account of one division or regiment.
Personal account - Describes the events from an individual(s) level. (Ex: The Longest Day.)
Oral History - Written from interviews. Usually no continuity through book.
Reference - Basic reference material; such as maps, organization, casualty figures. If a history book is too difficult for casual reading, then it is categorized as a Reference book.
Discussion or Analytical - Author presents arguments and opinions.
Photos - Glossy finish refers to special paper inserted in books for photos.
Plain paper refers to photos printed on same page as text.
Newsprint - Some WW2-era booklets were printed on newsprint paper, which yellow over time.
The Mediterranean Theater series
includes the following 4 volumes which cover the campaigns in North
Africa, Sicily and the mainland
two volumes, "Salerno to Cassino"& "Cassino
to the Alps", cover the entire campaign in Italy, with the latter one
just the period when the 85th Division was in combat.
"Northwest Africa: Seizing the Initiative in the West"- George F. Howe. History of entry of the US Army into WW2 combat in the Mediterranean. Begins with the landings in western coast and the loss at Kasserine and the final thrust into Bizerte. A whopping 748 pages. 21 maps in text & 8 color fold-out maps. USPO, 1957.
and the Surrender of Italy"-
Lt.-Col. Albert N. Garland & Howard McGaw Smyth & Martin
Blumenson. Covers amphibious landings in Sicily and General
Patton's race to reach Messina before the British. Includes a
history of the secret negotiations and capitulation of the Italian
government. Includes a complete organization table of US forces
that landed on Sicily on 9 July. 609 pages. 8 maps
in text & 8 color
fold-out maps. USPO, 1965.
"Cassino to the Alps" - Ernest F. Fisher, Jr. Covers campaign from May 11 offensive to the capture of Rome and through to the end of war. One of several volumes of official US Army history. 584 pages. 11 maps in text & 16 color fold-out maps. USPO, 1977.
"Pictorial History of WW2: The War Against Germany and Italy; Mediterranean and Adjacent Areas" - Photo history of US fighting in Tunisia, Sicily, Italy and southern France--- a large portion is devoted to Italy. A good source for photos of equipment and front-line conditions. Most photos have a good identification of equipment but not the specifics, such as unit. Estimate there are 500 photos in this book. 465 pages with Index. Pictures on every page with a few intro pages with text. No maps. USPO.
Other CMH Publications:
- US Army History - 50th Anniversary Edition (softbound):
- Battery Press. Hard back book covers the mad dash across the Po River
Valley to the base of the Alps from April 21 to May 2, 1945. Includes
details about exact crossing sites of Po River by the different
Basically a modern reprint and compilation of two earlier publications:
"19 Days, From the Appennines to the Alps: The Story of the Po Valley Campaign". Printed in Milan in 1945, 90 pages, softbound booklet and
"The Final Campaign across Northwest Italy, 14 April - 2 May 1945" by Headquarters IV Corps.
Dawn: The War in North Africa, 1942-1943" - by Rick
Atkinson. This is the first in a trilogy on the campaign in
Mediterranean. Describes in detail the American entry into WW2 with the
invasion of North Africa and the eventual link up with the British
forces at Tunisia. Excellent book for reading or reference. 681 pages, 32 pages of glossy photos,
maps. 2002 ISBN 0-8050-6288-2.
"The Day of Battle: The War in Sicily and Italy, 1943-1944" - by Rick Atkinson. This is the second book in his trilogy; the third volume has yet to be published. Details the invasion of Sicily and the early campaigns in Italy that lead up to the battles of Cassino. This volume ends with the fall of Rome on 4 June 1944. 791 pages, 32 pages of glossy photos, 20 maps. 2007 ISBN 978-0-8050-6289-2.
"The Allied Forces in Italy; 1943- 1945" - by Guido Rosignoli. Includes a brief history of different campaigns and a short paragraph on Allied divisions plus an organizational table listing the regiments. Has color sketches and photos of uniforms worn by different units. This is a handy reference book for unit insignia, badges, & patches worn by American, British, Indian, Canadian and even organization of various units. 160 pages, 28 color plates, 10 maps (including copy of a Polish map). 1989 ISBN 0715392123.
"The Italian Campaign" - by John Strawson. A British officer re-examines the factors that influenced the Italian campaign based on new information released 30 years after the war. A fair discussion on the reasons for the Allied campaign in Italy. He includes some details from the front lines by drawing from his experience in 4th Hussars. A required analytical book for those who ask: "Was the Italian Campaign necessary?" 221 pages, 22 photos, 4 maps. Published by Secker & Warburg, 1987. ISBN 0-436-49993-2.
in Italy, 1943-1945" - by Field Marshall Lord
Subtitled "The campaign that tipped the War in Europe". A nice,
history of the Italian campaign, interspersed with first-hand accounts
of the fighting on the British front. The author was a tank
in Italy and France. The narratives seem to take up too much of
book. The maps only show geographical features and the front
does not show troops locations nor movements. (I had to go to
London to get my copy.)
350 pages, 24 pgs of glossy photos. Sidwick & Jackson in association with Imperial War Museum. 2001. ISBN 0-283-07294-6
"Tug of War:
The Battle for Italy; 1943-45" - by Dominick Graham
Shelford Bidwell. Another British book that seems to be slanted
their prespective, but I have not read it yet. 445 pages, 8 pages
of the commanders printed on plain paper, good Index. A few maps &
a sketch of Cassino front. Hodder & Stoughton
Underbelly: The Anglo-American Controversy over the
1939-1945" - by Trumbull Higgins.
Described as the first complete American account that analyzes the
policies and strategems by the British to divert the Allied
cross-channel invasion in favor of a limited land offensive in the
Mediterranean theater. 275 pages. Index only. 1968 MacMillian Co., NY and
Collier-MacMillian Ltd in UK.
"War in Italy, 1943-1945: A Brutal Story" - by Richard Lamb. Another British book that covers the last year of the war, with good information on partisans, the Royal army and the war's impact on the Italian civilians. Another view of the attrocities against the partisans and the Jews and both pro & con about the Pope's stand on the subject. Author served as a British liason officer with the Friuli Division and claims that this unit was the first one to enter Bologna. 335 pages(softbound), photos, Index, Appdx. DaCapo Press, 1996. ISBN 0306806886
"Salerno" - by Hugh Pond. Story of the invasion of first amphibious assault on Italy at Salerno, September 8, 1943. A concise, well written book with some photos. Follow-up to his first book, "Sicily". 269 pages, 8 pages of photos. Nice map in front. Little, Brown and Co., 1961 and William Kimber & Co, Ltd in UK.
"Salerno: A Military Fiasco" - by Eric Morris. Another book that describes and analyzes the Salerno invasion. Have not read it yet. Appendix include good organizational tables. 358 pages, 12 pages of glossy photos, 6 Appendices & good Index. A few maps. Stein and Day Pub., 1983.
"Salerno 1943: Operation Avalanche" - by Angelo Pesce. This is a hugh 10 x 13-inch book loaded with photos of the fighting around Salerno. The first 88 pages are a history written in Italian, but the remaining pages are nothing but photos with both Italian and English captions. The last 30 pages are full page color scenes of the battlefield as seen today. A must-have book as these photos are not found in most books printed in U.S. 446 pages, ~700 photos, 7 maps, 5 organizational charts. The Falcon Press, Naples, 1993.
"Anzio: Edge of Disaster"- by William L. Allen. Nice overview and details on the struggle for the beachhead at Anzio. Small format book for high school level. 181 pages, with photos on plain paper. 3 maps. Talisman/Parrish Books, 1978. ISBN 0-525-93003-5.
"Fatal Decision: Anzio and the Battle for Rome" - by Carlo D'Este. A detailed history book of the Anzio campaign with personal accounts of action in battle. Covers a lot of the issues of higher command; such as the decision and planning of the invasion and Clark's decision to capture Rome. But the best part is the story of the battles. Highly recommend this as the first book to include in your library. 556 pages(softbound) Appendices include an organization tables. Hardbound: Harper Collins 1991. Softbound: Harper Perennial 1992 ISBN 0-06-092148-X.
"Bloody River; The Real Tragedy of Rapido" - by Martin Blumenson (author one of above of US Army series). This book describes the Allied crossing of the Rapido River at the base of Monte Cassino in Italy in January 1944 that stands out as one of the most bitter failures of WW2. The 36th "Texas" Division was caught in a cross-fire from well-entrenched German panzer division. A study of the leaders, decisions and problems with the assault; but not much about the fighting. 157 pages, 8 pages of photos, Apdx of organizational charts. Houghton Mifflin Co. 1970.
"The Gothic Line" - by Douglas Orgill. The Allied offensive in Italy in the autumn of 1944 plunged the British 8th Army and US 5th Army into some of the fiercest fighting of the war. Against them were two great German armies, 10th and 14th, who were defending from a chain of mountains that stretched across Italy's Northern Apennines. Written from a British view; places small emphasis on US participation. 257 pages, 6 maps, 2 organizational charts. W.W. Norton & Co. 1967."The Gothic Line: Canada's Month of Hell in World War II Italy " - 2nd in Mark Zuehlke's trilogy on the Canadian Army in Italy. This is a complete history of Canada's participation in the battle to break the Gothic Line in August & September 1944. Includes first-hand accounts from veterans who were there. 551 pages. 5 Maps with units. 16 pages of glossy photos, appendix, Index. Douglas & McIntyre, 2003. (softbound) ISBN 1-55365-023-9.
Division in World War II" by Paul L. Schultz. Full of
history and facts of 85th
'Custer' Division, such as training in US and even includes
a brief history of its WW1 experience. This is the best info on the
of the 85th Division in the Italian Campaign. Good maps. Written
just after the war, it does not contain any of the negative news; i.e.,
info on casualties. 240 pages and 24 pages of
real clear) and 14 maps. Battery Press 1949
(Reprinted 1979). Appendix includes citations
Medal of Honor & Distinguished Units. ISBN 0-89839-019-2.
"History of the 3rd Battalion, 338th Infantry Regiment, 85th Infantry Division" by Captain Harry J. Goodyear. A brief history of one portion of the 85th Division. Provides a good description on small unit actions. Small format, hardbound edition. 131 pages, no maps. Campus Publishing Co. 1946.
"The Blue Devils in Italy; A History of the 88th Infantry Division in World War II" by John Delaney. The 88th 'Blue Devil' Division served 344 days of combat and lost 15,173 officers and men killed, wounded and missing. This is an excellent account of their combat in Italy. Maps are very basic sketches. Includes interesting chapters covering their occupation duty after the war ended. Appendices of casualties and decorations. 359 pages, pictures, maps and over 15 chapters. Originally published 1947 Infantry Journal Inc. (Reprint 1988).
"The Blue Devil 'Battle Mountain' Regiment in Italy"- by John E. Wallace, subtitled- "A History of the 350th Infantry Regiment, 1944-1945". A very detailed and somewhat technical history of the 350th Regiment, 88th 'Blue Devil' Division. A lot of info is crowded into this small book. Sometimes it lacks explanation of military terms and symbols. Includes many detailed accounts of individuals in combat and the names of people those involved. Many of the maps are too small or faint to read, but the sketches made at the front lines are great. 266 pages, photos, maps and sketches. Extensive references but no index. Battery Press, 1981 (First Ed- 1977). ISBN 0-89839-052-4.
"Draftee Division; The 88th Infantry Division in WW2" - by Brig-General John Sloan Brown (grandson of General Sloan), Chief of Military History. A study of the concept and performance of the draftee division or conscripted American troops. This specifically details the 88th Division and contains some facts on the 85th Custer Division. This book has a few good tables and even some photos but this is NOT a combat history of this unit. (I do not own this book. See book review for details.)
- by Major Robert Robbins. This unit history of the 91st
'Powder River' Division is one of the best as it has
it all: an overall history of the division, great maps, and many
personal accounts of combat. The Forward states this was the first book
written on this subject and relied mostly on records and personal
of the 91st Division. Includes simple sketches made for the book. Also
includes detailed maps; many tracing unit advances in 3 colors.
423 pages. Color maps, photos and sketches scattered throughout book.
Journal Press, 1947. (Previous owner of
copy was George A. Julius, probably of 361st Regiment.) ISBN
"History of the 363rd Infantry Regiment" - by Captain Ralph E. Strootman. A great unit history on the 363rd Regiment of the 91st "Powder River" Division. This book has detailed history with maps similiar in detail to those found in Robbins' book. Roster includes Company C of both 316 Medical and 316th Engineers and 347 Field Artillery. 354 pages. Photos and artist sketches. Appendices for Honor Roll, awards, battle statistics and roster. Journal Press, 1947.
"Thunder in the Appennines: The Story of the 361st Infantry Regiment in Italy" - by Roy Livengood. This is a detailed history of the 361st Regiment of the 91st Division (which fought to left of 85th Division at the Gothic Line). Drawing from several sources, it tells the story of the hard fighting in the Appennines. Appendix contains list of veterans of the 361st Association as of 1978. Published by 361st Association in 1981. Many photos. 473 pages. [Autographed]
"Buffalo Soldiers in Italy; Black Americans in World War II" - by Hondon B. Hargrove. A short history of the 92nd 'Buffalo' Division, plus attaching units. A good history of the battles and individual acts of bravery. Contains well-written analysis of their combat and their overall performance. Good discussion about opinion and treatment of the black troops by the higher-level commanders. 200 pages, 16 pages photos Apdx. 5 Maps. McFarland & Co. 1985. ISBN 0-89950-116-8.
"Buffalo Soldiers; The 92nd Infantry Division & Reinforcements in WW2" - by Thomas St. John Arnold, Plans & Operational Officer for 92nd Division. A short history of the combat experiences of the all Negro 92nd Division, plus the units that were attached, such as 442nd RCT. This unit fought on the western coastline of Italy. 245 pages(softbound), 5 Apdx, many photos & cartoons scattered throughout text. 2 Maps of Genoa. Sunflower Univ Press, 1990. ISBN 0-89745-127-9.
"The Battle History of the 1st Armored Division"- by George Howe. This book covers the complete history of the 1st 'Old Ironsides' Armored Division from North Africa to the battles in Italy. A superb historical reference in every detail with few personal stories, which can be distracting. This book helps to explain the many re-organizations and special task forces that the 1st AD took part in. Makes reference to other units that fought with them. Excellent info for anyone interested in armored units. 471 pages, 300+ photos and maps. Apdx compares the range and effectivity of German & Allied armor. No rosters. 1954.
"Eager For Duty" - Unit history of the 157th Infantry Regiment of the 45th Division from 6 June 1943 to 8 May 1945. Good details of this regiment as it fought in Sicily, Italy, France and Germany. Includes dates, unit names, leaders and some great stories from the front. Last chapter is on Dachau. Fold-out pages with large, color map sketches. 192 pages. List Honors and awards. Photos. Printed in 1946 by Army & Navy Publishing Company.
"The Rock of Anzio: From Sicily to Dachau: A History of the 45th Infantry Division"- by Flint Whitlock. A new book about the 45th 'Thunderbird' Division as told by interviews with several veterans. Based on archives, photos, letters, diaries, previously classified official records, and scores of personal interviews with surviving veterans. The title is misleading to a degree since this covers the entire history of the division both in Italy and Germany. There is a special chapter that investigates the shooting of German guards at Dachau concentration camp. 479 pages, 55 photos and 26 maps. 1998. ISBN: 0-8133-3399-7. (Softbound - ISBN: 0-8133-3687-2 )
"Attack! Attack! Attack! : History of the 'Famous' 34th Infantry Division"- by Lt. Col. John H. Hougen. This is a large format book about the 34th 'Red Bull' Division. This book is written in a news-print format with large font titles at the start of each article. There is a a lot of details even though the articles are short. It is pretty good reference book and would be even better if the maps were clearer. A large selection of photos, including informal ones of the officers of various units. No page numbers. No index or appendix. 1949. Excellent quality reprint by Battery Press ( ISBN: 0-89839-024-9)
"The Texas Army; A History of the 36th Division in the Italian Campaign" - by Robert L. Wagner. A great compilation from several sources on the 36th "Texas" Division while they were in Italy. The preface refers to "this volume" as if there is a follow-on book. Some maps are an eye-level view of the battlefield. 285 pages. 16 Maps & 36 photos printed on plain paper. State House Press, 1972.
"T-Patch to Victory; The 36th "Texas" Division": France, Germany & Austria - by Col. Vincent M. Lockhart. A 'new' book about the 36th Division in France. I list this book only to note that it does not cover any of the period while they were in Italy. 325 pages. Maps & B&W photos printed on plain paper. Staked Plains Press, 1981.
- by Robert Adleman and Colonel George Walton. This is a detailed oral
history of the 1st Special Service Forces
that was formed from American and Canadian soldiers. It covers some of
the early organization by Colonel Frederick and the training in Helena,
Montanna. Their first assault was the scaling of the 200-foot cliff of
the Monte la Difensa in Italy. Later they commanded a 10-mile portion
the Anzio front where their nightly patrols earned them the name Schwartzteufeln,
or "Black Devils." The 1968 movie by the same name, staring
Holden and Cliff Roberson, was based on this unit. Book has alot of
and documentation, including text of memos, but it doesn't tell the
in a continuous flow; it is more like excerpts of interviews.
"No Greater Ally" - by Kenneth K. Koskodan. A general history and overview of the Poland's forces that fought to defend their country in 1939 and their contributions to the Allies througout the campaigns in Italy and Europe. Osprey Publications(one of their first hardback books) 272 pages, 32 pages of glossy photos. 2009 ISBN 978 1 84603 365 0.
"Poles in the Italian Campaign; 1943-1945 "- by Olgierd Terlecki. A short history of the Polish troops that came from Soviet prisoners. One chapter describes the Polish commandos early in the war. Another describes the Polish navy off the Italian coast. Also, describes the Polish RAF squadrons flights to aide the Warsaw uprisings. Good details on various units of the II Polish Corps. 136 pages, photos maps. 9 X 4-3/4 format. Interpress Publishers 1972.
"The History of the Fallschrim-PanzerKorps Herman Goring" - by Franz Kurowski. A very detailed history of the organization and history of the Herman Goring Division as it went from a police battalion to a flak regiment then to a division serving in Italy and finally to a corps on the Russian front. Contains some very detailed info but not a lot of personal accounts. With no index and its odd outline, this makes the book difficult to use as a reference source. 474 pages, 5 Appd, 18 map sketches(German text) and loads of photos on glossy paper, but no Index. Appendices includes several Org charts or tables down to company level and tables of armaments, wearers of the Knights Cross, commanders and important dates. Fedorowicz Publishing Co. (Canada) 1995. ISBN 0-921991-25-8. See book review for more details & history of HG Division.
"Air War Italy, 1944-45 " - by Nick Beale. Subtitled“The Axis Air Forces from the Liberation of Rome to the Surrender”. Any book that covers the history after June 1944 is unique. This reference book is a daily log of the flights and combat over northern Italy. Therefore, any research on a specific subject is rather cumbersome. Includes both German and Italian fighters and bombers. The Allied victories are mentioned but this is not the primary focus. Appendices include sketches of air bases and table of aircraft found at end of the war. 2 maps showing locations of airports and radar installations. 12 pgs of color side views of aircraft. Loads of photos. 232 pgs. Index, Appdx. Co-authors Fernando D’Amico & Gabriele Valentini. Airlife Publishing Ltd. 1996. ISBN 1-85310-252-0.
"The 451st Bomb Group of WW2: A Pictorial History " - by Mike Hill. Lots of photos and a little bit of history. This book covers the 451st BG that flew B-24's out of Castellucia, Italy with the 15th Air Force. This book is full of action photos and B-24 nose art. The history is the story of the group with some accounts of how aircraft and crew were lost. Includes a list of the missions and a list of 300 aircraft that served with this unit. No appendix. 160 pgs. Schiffer Military History, 2001. ISBN 0-7643-1287-1.
"The War North of Rome: June 1944 - May 1945 " - by Thomas R. Brooks. I wasn't interested in this book at first, because it was modern and it seemed to only skim over the events. After realizing it was a thick book, I decided it must contain some new information. The book is an overview of the campaigns during the last year of the war. There is no mention of the air forces. Very little first hand accounts. 422 pgs. Photos(poor quality). Index, Appdx 2002. ISBN 0785814000.
"Impossible Victory: A Personal Account of the Battle for the River Po " - Brian Harpur. The author served with British 8th Army. He gives a lengthy intro on the Italian Campaign and includes news scoops from post-war interviews of 3 main leaders: McCreery, Clark and Alexander. He tells some personal stories of his close calls including a face-to-face confrontation with a Tiger tank (just like "Kelly's Heroes"). But his stories and his eloquent, and sometimes incorrect, grammar adds little substance to the study of this campaign. The only redeeming value of this book is that it provides a little insight into the British front lines. Even the title is confusing: Impossible Victory? 202 pages, 1 map, 12 pages of photos, 7 Appdx & Index. Hippocrene Books 1981.
"The Canadians In Italy, 1943-1945" - Vol II - by Lt.-Col. G.W. Nicholson. The official history of the 1st Canadian Division in Italy during WWII. This thick volume covers the period from the Allied decision to invade Sicily until the Canadians were pulled out in February 1945. This reference book has a highly detailed index that is sub-divided by Allied and German units. The appendices include order of battle and commanders. So exhaustive, its hard to read. 807 pages, including 25 very detailed & colorful maps, 14 B&W maps and 53 photos. A short version of the Official History was published in 1947; this is second volume of a later and more exhaustive work. (no date)Return to Top of Page
Biographies & Specific Topics
- by General Mark W. Clark, CO of 15th Army Group. Maybe this book will
explain why Clark made some of the decisions that he did, such as going
for Rome and letting the German Army escape or the bombing of the Monte
Cassino monastery. This book relates what he did and has a few stories
from the front. For example; the time he read to a group of Colonels
released promotion list; he intentionally read Eisenhower's name last.
[General Clark later wrote a book on his experiences in Korean War, "From
the Danube to the Yalu".] 500 pages, 17 pg of
photos, 30 small maps. Harper & Brothers, 1950.
PX BOOK AVAILABLE, CLICK TO ORDER.
- by Nigle Nicolson. A biography of the British commander of all the
ground forces in Italy; Major-General Sir Harold Alexander. Good
quality book with detail info on this important leader of WW2.
General Alexander was born in Ireland, the son of an earl. He
served with distinction with the Irish Guards in World War 1.
After commanding the retreats of Dunkirk and Burma, he was
knighted and given command in North Africa. 346
pages, 16 pg of
photos, 12 maps. Atheneum, (Murray Printing Co in US) 1973. ISBN 0-689-10552-5.
"The Memoirs of Field-Marshal Kesselring" - Auotbiography of Albert Kesselring, the commander of all German troops in Italy(OBSW) until March, 1945. He was condemned to death, but later released in 1952. Before his death in 1960, he wrote his memoirs under the title "Soldat bis zum letzten Tag"- a soldier to the last day. Written in 3 parts: (a) WW1 experiences and early days in Luftwaffe, (b) Italian Campaign, & (c) his final command in Germany and his arrest and imprisonment. Book is a little hard to read, since it was translated from German by an Englishman. Kesselring assumes the reader is knowledgeable of some history of German command decisions and events. It starts right off using abbreviations GSO and GOC without any definition of what it means. It could use a lot more commas(,). Still, a must read. 319 pages. 6 pages of Glossy photos. English version printed by Presido, 1989. ISBN 0-89141-353-7.
"Neither Fear Nor Hope"
- by General Frido von Senger Und Etterlin, the defender of
Cassino. General von Senger describes his experiences serving in
the German Army in Russia, Sicily and Italy, where he was in command of
the 14th Panzer Corps. He describes the Cassino campaign and
critiques the Allied decisions but there is not much history on the
latter year of the war. Includes one chapter on his captivity and
his association with the Dostler war crimes trial. 368
pages, 16 pgs photos on text pages, 14 maps. Greenhill Books, 1989.
"Monte Cassino" - by David Hapgood. There are many books on the battles for Cassino; this is not one. This details the action initiated by a doctor in the Herman Goering Division who tries to save the art and documents stored in the Monte Cassino Abbey, including treasures from Naples. It describes the events that lead up to the Germans occupation of the prominent fortress area and the eventual mass bombing of the monastery. Based on Major Becker's 1968 report, interview with General Clark, Allied mission reports, and diaries of General Senger and many of the monks. It quotes from the diary of the monks who were not evacuated until just prior to the bombing. Co-author, David Richardson. 269 pages, dozens of photos, Maps on inside cover. Congdon & Weed, Inc, 1984.
"Death in Rome" - by Robert Katz. Great book-- reads like a novel with good documentation. A revealing story of one of the most horrible episodes in Italy-- the execution of 335 Italians in the Ardeatine Caves. On March 23, 1944, a group of partisans attacked a column of SS troops and killed 32. Hitler ordered the execution of 10 Italians for every one German within 24 hours. This is a very interesting book with a lot of details on the personalities of both sides. Includes details of behind-the-scene planning of the massacre, selection of prisoners to be executed (like a Schindler's list in reverse) and other info, such as General Wolff's plan to deport the entire male population of Rome. 334 pages. Appendices include list of names killed in the caves. Macmillan Company, 1967.
"Rome Fell Today" - by Adleman, Robert H. and Colonel George Walton. Despite the title, this book covers the events from May to June 5, 1944, that lead up to the capture of Rome. The main focus is on the US participation and that of II Corps. He also defends General Mark Clark and the strategy of the Italian Campaign. 336 pages. Photographs printed on regular paper. Little, Brown, and company, Boston, 1968, 1st ed.
"The Race For Rome" - by Dan Kurzman. The author interviewed civilians and soldiers of all nationalities for this oral history of the events in and around Rome. The book describes some of the combat at Cassino. It mainly focuses on the civilians who suffered at the hands of the Germans and the French goumiers. It has some information on the partisan groups and leaders. 488 pages, with 20 photos printed on the text pages. Doubleday, 1975. ISBN:0-385-06555-8.
on Monte Sole" - by Jack Olsen. A well-researched book on a
little known subject; the massacre of 1800 Italian citizens by the SS
fall of 1944. Told as a story based on eye-witness accounts. My brother
contacted the author; this is the only history book the author
Click on open book icon for the Book Review and more details and a map
of the location of this dreadful atrocity. G. P. Putnam
Sons, New York, 1968.
"Disaster At Bari" - by Glenn B. Infield. An account of the German attack on the Allied port at Bari on December 2, 1943. The successful attack became a tragedy when the SS John Harvey was hit while carrying 100 tons of mustard gas bombs. 301 pages, with 16 pages of photos. Diagrams of harbor. Macmillian Company, 1971.
"The Other Italy: The Italian Resistance in WW2" - by Maria de Blasio Wilhelm. The resistance in Italy sprang up independantly in all the cities. That results in a disjointed history. Each chapter is a theme based on eye-witness accounts. The 1st chapter is an excellent short history of the resistance as it grew with the rise of Fascism. 272 pages. Index, Photos scattered throughout book. W.W. Norton & Co., 1988. ISBN 0-393-02568-3.
"Hitler's Pope; The Secret History of Pius XII" - by John Cornwell. Cornwell began research for this book in an attempt to show the Pope had tried to relieve the plight of the Jews. Instead, his research in the Vatican archives proved the opposite. Eugene Pacelli was the Papal Nuncio(ambassador) in Germany and thought authoritarian governments were easier to deal with. As Cardinal Secretary of State before the war, Pacelli pursued Vatican diplomatic goals that crippled Germany's large Catholic political party, which might otherwise have stymied Hitler's worst excesses or even changed the election. The book covers Pacelli's formative years and the decisions he made. Cornwell seems to repeat himself: its as if he doesn't expect the reader will read the entire book. Otherwise, easy reading, even for non-Catholics. 426 pages, softbound. Penguin Putnam Inc, 1999 & Penguin Books 2000. ISBN: 0140296271
There Shall Be Wars: WW2 Diaries And Memoirs"
- by Wilmer "Bud" Wgner. The sub-title is a little misleading, as
this is the diary of one soldier who served in 151stField
Artillery Battalion, 34th "Red Bull Division".
Corporal Wagner has added commentary to his diary that spans from April
1941 to July 1945. He first served as a cook and then later as a
messenger. This latter job required him to drive to the various
under cover of night. This account survived because Bud hid his
and his "forbidden Kodak 828" from being confiscated. Good
of his experiences in training and in combat in North Africa and Italy.
pgs, 178 photos & Appendices. Wilmer & Lloyd Wagner Publishing,
[Click on book icon for an external website advertisement for this book. Includes photos.]
PX BOOK AVAILABLE, CLICK TO ORDER.
and Unarmed" - by Ernest Kowalik. Staff Sgt. Kowalik was a
pilot for the 88th Division's
---the only pilot who was not an officer. He flew an L-4 Piper
to spot for the artillery; he was the pilot and the observer.
is a great account of the experiences of an Army pilot in Italy.
Sgt Kowalik tells it like it was without any distracting dialogue.
305 pages, many photos, small index. Glenn Curtis Press, 2005. ISBN 0-9763058-0-1. [Autographed ] PX BOOK AVAILABLE, CLICK TO ORDER.
"Long Walk Through War: A Combat Doctor's Diary" - by Klaus H. Huebner. Detailed diary of a German immigrant who was a Captain with 88th Division, 349th Regiment. He saw front line duty while serving as an assistant battalion surgeon. He tells about experiences treating wounding while under fire by small arms and artillery and in mine fields where he earned the Bronze Star. He gives a lot of detail, not only place but dates and times, and the other divisions that were near them. Well written, but he could have left out the risqué stories of his night life. 207 pgs, 5 maps, 25 pgs of photos & index. Texas A&M Univ, 1987. ISBN 0-89096-320-7. [Autographed ]
"Through My Eyes: 91st Infantry Division in the Italian Campaign, 1942-1945 " - by Leon Weckstein. A personal account of a soldier in the 91st Division. He claims that he had orders to watch the Leaning Tower of Pisa and direct artillery on it if any enemy were seen in it. Good details about the places and men of his unit but he doesn't identify his unit. 193 pages. Photo on white paper and sketches from other references on 91st Division. Includes Bill Mauldin's cartoons. Hellgate Press, OR, 2003. (softbound) ISBN 1-55571-497-8.
"A Staff Officer in the Fifth Army: Sicily, Salerno, Anzio" - by Major Edmund F. Ball. A narrative account of Major Ball's service in the Fifth Army where he served as an aide to Gen. Clark in North Africa and a Army Air Force liason officer in Sicily and Salerno. Book has details about officers, such as who was killed or promoted, but doesn't go into detail about the events behind the important decisions of the campaign. Expositioin Press, 1958. [Autographed to Author's nephew.]
From My Skull"
- by Stuart Hood. A narrative account of a British Intelligience
Officer who was captured at El Alamein. He escaped a PW camp in
Italy and served with the partisans. 153 pages Hutchinson
& Co. LTD. 1963.
"Out of the Italian Night: Wellington Bomber Operations 1944-45" - by Maurice G. Lihou. A detailed account of the British 205th Bomber Group that flew missions out of Italy. The author relates his account of his service with good info on the unit. Appendices include a list of targets and the number of aircraft that participated and were lost and a list of the author’s missions. 196 pages, B&W photos printed throughout, Index. Softbound, Airlife Classic, 2000. ISBN 1-84037-405-5.
"Invasion Diary" - by Richard Tregaskis. An account of fighting in Sicily and Italy written by a journalist from July 1943 to January 1945. A few good stories of combat by an observer. Example; he flew a photo recon mission with Col. Elliot Roosevelt. 245 pages & 16 pages of photos. Appendices include an organization tables. Random House - 1944.
"Brave Men"- by Pulitzer-prize winner Ernie Pyle. This depressed, frail hypochondriac became America's best-loved and most widely read war correspondent. His articles provided mothers and family back home a ray of hope that our US troops were being treated well and just might survive this war. The GI's loved him because Pyle took risks when he visited them at the front lines. This book contains interviews with GI's at Anzio and 45th Division in Italy. Index includes names and hometowns of the GI's that Pyle met and interviewed. Publisher Henry Holt & Co. - 1944 (Reprinted several times).
"Naples '44" - by Norman Lewis, British Intelligence. A personal diary of the author's experiences in Naples during the Allied occupation. He served in the British Field Security Service but was attached to the US 5th Army. The first entry in the diary begins with the invasion forces off Salerno. He describes the conditions and despair of the civilian population, including problems with black market, poverty, prostitution and disease. Recommended reading for the impact of war on civilians. Dates include Sept. 8, 1943, to October 24, 1944. 206 pages, Patheon Books, 1978. ISBN 0-394-50354-6.
"The Man Who
Was" - by Ewen Montagu. The documented story of British
Mincemeat; which planted false information to make the Germans
that Sicily was not the site of Allied landing in July 1943. The
was planted on a body disguised as a Royal Marine courier, Major
complete with identification, love letters, theater ticket stubs, etc.
Major Martin was dropped off coast of Spain to appear as an aircraft
A recent TV documentary identified the "body" as that of a man who
the physical for British Army and, due to excessive drinking, died of
He served his country after his death more than many
I read this book for a high school book report. Made into a movie in
160 pages. Photos of documents and Major Martin. J.
B. Lippincot, 1954.
"Montgomery's Desert Army" - Osprey's softbound booklet by John Wilkinson-Latham. A nice reference book on the British Army and its campaign in North Africa. Detail photos and drawings on uniforms. Includes a complete order of battle for the British 8th Army for October 1942. 40 pages, 7.3 x 9.8 inch. Osprey Pub Co, 1977. (one of their earliest booklets)
"Canadian Forces in World War II" - Osprey's softbound booklet by Rene Chartrand. An overview of the formation of the Canadian forces and their uniforms. Includes a table of every Canadian regiment and where they served in WW2. Detail photos and drawings. Tables on chronology of war and highlander colors. A good beginner study of Canadian shoulder insignia. 48 pages, 7.3 x 9.8 inch. Osprey Pub Co, 2001.
Defences in Italy in World War II" - Osprey's softbound
booklet on Fortresses by Neil Short. Details on the 34 defense
lines that were planned and how they were constructed. Detail
drawings on the installations of Panzer I & II tank turrents, 88-mm
cannon, Nebelwerfers, Panther tank turrents, and self-contained MG
Panzernest pill boxes.
64 pages, 7.3 x 9.8 inch. Osprey Pub Co, 2006.
"A Bell for Adano" - by Pulitzer-prize winner John Hershey. A novel about the struggles and frustrations of a military AMGOT advisor working with the Italian civilians and the local government to return life back to normal. Like the above book, I read this book as a 9th grade assignment. Alfred A. Knopf publisher- 1944.(Only novel in this list)Return to Top of Page
Mussolini & The Fascists
"Italy Under Mussolini" - by William Bolitho. The material of this book appeared in THE WORLD during Dec. 1925,as a series of short articles, which Mr. Bolitho was commissioned to write. Contents: Origin of Fascism, Socialism & Fascism, The Tyranny, Fascist Doctrine, Militia, Army, King, Foreign Policy, Finance, Slave State, Enemies of Fascism, Conquered South, & Fascist Internationale. 1926
- by Benito Mussolini - Forward by US ambassador to Italy, Richard
Child. Published in New York in 1928,
this was a purely propaganda tool by Mussolini to sway the thinking of
Americans. Haven't read through the marlarky, but found an interesting
comment on the troublesome state of Bosnia-Herzegovina --even back in
days. Charles Scribner's Sons, 1928. 318 pages and index. Five photos-
-all of Mussolini with hair. [If you want to read something more
try "The Cardinal's Mistress" written by Mussolin when he was
years old.] Translated by Hiram Motherwell,
by Albert & Charles Boni, 1928.
"Sacrifice on the Steppe" The Italian Alpine Corps in the Stalingrad Campaign, 942-1943. - by Hope Hamilton. A history of the Italian mountain troops, the Alpini, during their struggle in the frozen plains at Stalingrad. The 2nd Alpini Division lead a group of 40,000 Italians, Germans and Romanians on a break-out from behind the Russian encirclement. This book has some good details on the battles but is based upon interviews with veterans. 366 pgs, 16 pages glossy photos, 4 maps. Bibliography is mostly Italian publications. Pub Casement. ISBN 978-1-61200-02-2, 2011.
War; The Italian-Ethiopian Campaign, 1935-1941"-
- by Anthony Mockler. This book covers the Italian invasion of
the Italian colonial rule and the British counter-invasion 5 years
The author spent years studying in Italy and Ethiopia and interviewed
King Haile. Book includes such details as a pedigree of kings and
a chronology events. 454 pgs, 32 pages glossy photos, 10 maps,
index & biographical index. Random
Pub. ISBN 0-394-54222-3, 1984.
"Lion by the Tail" - by Thomas M. Coffey. A history of the Italian invasion of Abyssinia (or Ethiopia) in 1935-36. 369 pgs, 8 pages photos, 1 map. Viking Press. ISBN 670-42965-1, 1974.
"The Ciano Diaries" -by Count Galeazzo Ciano, Italian Minister for Foreign Affairs. Ciano was an Italian diplomat from 1938 to 1943 and was married to Mussolini's daughter. After his arrest by Gestapo, he added an epilogue to his diaries before his execution. His wife smuggled the manuscript out to the world press. There are some interesting in-sights of the dealings with Italy, Germany, Russia and Poland. The most interesting item of this book is the DRAMATIS PERSONAE at the front that identifies about 500 political, governmental, and military figures. Edited by Hugh Gibson, 584 pages, Doubleday & Co., 1945.
"Mussolini, The Wild Man of Europe" - John Bond. An early exposition written during a time when Mussolini had 41 published biographies that contained a lot of hype and propaganda. The author quotes from speeches as translated by Signora Margherita Sarfatti, Mussolini's first mistress who moved to USA. 206 pages, 38 photos. Independent Publishing Co,1928.
- Another book I picked up at an antique store. I have not read enough
of it to determine if it is well documented. It says it is about the
days of Mussolini but it does go back and explains what lead up to his
overthrow in 1943. Appendix contains a list of key names and places.
Straus & Co., 1948.
"Operation Sunrise: the Secret Surrender" - by Bradley F. Smith & Elena Aga Rossi. This a history of the Allied effort to secure the surrender of German forces in Italy. Secret surrender negotiations were begun between SS General Wolfe and OSS Allen Dulles. Their progress was delayed due to several military and political events. Bradley Smith is the author of many books on Nuremberg, ULTRA and the OSS. 234 pages with photos. New York: Basic, 1979. London: André Deutsch, 1979.
"One Afternoon At Mezzegra: The Story of Mussolini's Death"- - by Peter Whittle. This is the story of the last 5 days of Mussolini, tracing the progress of his convoy and the capture of Mussolini by the 52 Girabaldi Brigade. It is told in narrative form, which makes you wonder who was the surviving witness to some of the conversations. 195 pages. Index, 16 pages of photos. Prentice-Hall, Inc. 1969. See Execution of Mussolini page.
"Benevolence and Betrayal; Five Italian Jewish Families under Fascism" - by Alexander Stille. An interesting account of five Jewish-Italian families who worked with anti-fascists forces to protect other Jews from the Nazi secret police after the Nazis occupied Italy. 365 pages, Summit publisher. 1991, Second Edition.
"The Man Who Saved Florence" - by David Tutaev. The account of Dr. Gerhard Wolf's defiant stand against the Nazi High Command is the center of this dramatic record of a great city under siege and the fate of the Holy Trinity Bridge. Florence was the storehouse of Renaissance art during the Nazi occupation of 1943-44. 1966.
- by Rex Trye. A modern study of the Italian soldier during the years
Fascism in Italy. Included are some personal recollections of officers
and private soldiers. Filled with museum-quality photos of equipment,
and some detail drawings of weapons. I use this as a quick
on Italian uniforms. 167 pages, 124 B&W and
color photos, Motor Books Intl, 1987. ISBN 0-7603-0022-4.
Publication - Men-At-Arms series.
Soft-bound books that describe the uniform details with photos and illustrations and includes some history and organization.
|"The Italian Army (1943-1945)" - by Philip S. Jowett. Osprey published a 3-part reference series on the Italian army and uniforms. Great info on organizations and uniform details. Each booklet contains photos and color plates, 48 pages. Very excellent source. 7.3 x 9.8 inch. Osprey Pub Co, 2001-2002.|
|- Part I, Europe 1940-43, Series No. 340 - Describes the Italian army beginning with the war in Europe and the standard uniform issued in 1937. Includes details of the uniforms worn in Russia. ISBN: 1-85532-864-X.|
Part II, Africa 1940-43, Series No.
349 This part details the desert uniforms worn during the
Africa in 1940-1943. ISBN: 1-85532-865-8.
Part III, Italy
1943-45, Series No.
353 The thrid book includes the organizations and uniforms
dating from the
Italian surrender in 1943. This booklet covers the Italian army that
loyal to Germans, the Italians who fought with Allies, and the partisan
bands. ISBN: 1-85532-866-6. See
Units and Organizations.
|The Italian Invasion of Abyssinia, 1935-36 - by David Nicolle. Describes the armies, uniform, equipment of the Italians and the Ethiopian soldiers. 48 pages. 1997. ISBN: 1-85532-692-2.|
Desert Army - by John
Wilkinson-Latham. A older publication but includes details of
the British army during the North African desert campaign. 40
pages. 1977 ISBN: 0 85045 250 3.
|Canadian Forces in World War II - by Rene' Chartrand - A good source on the Canadians that served both in Italy and France. 48 pages. ISBN: 1-84176-302-0.|
|German Defences in Italy in World War II - by Neil Short. Detail description of the pill boxes, buried tank turrents, Panzernester, and other defences used throughout Italy. Cross-section drawings and map of every defence line in Italy. 64 pages. 2007 ISBN: 1-84176-938-X.|
Army Elite Units & Special Forces 1940-43 - by P. Crociani & P. P.
Battistelli. A brief overview of the speical units such as the
Ariete armored and the Trieste motorized divisions, the Folgore
paratrooper division, the assault engineers. Also describes the X
Arditi regiment, the Monte Cervino ski battalion, Blackshirts
sea-landing groups as well as some ineffective foreign troops.
This book introduces many of these units as this is a lot of material
to cover in this small book. 63
pages. New Nov
978 1 84908 595 3. (available in e-Book)
Field Artillery of World War II - by Steven J. Zaloga A great
history of the development of the various US field artillery guns from
the paratrooper 105mm up to the 240mm. Photos and illustrations
cover details of all guns. Includes a few pages on the tractors
that transported the guns. 48
pages. 2007 ISBN: 978 1 84603 061 1.
Army Radio Operator in World War II - by Gordon Rottman. A very thin
publication about the SCR-300 field radio. Booklet came in the
kit of a 1/16-scale BBI figure. 8 pages. 2004.
Pamphlets & Publications
Unit Histories & material printed at end of the war for the soldier. Most have no publisher info or date.
There: From Gruber to the Brenner Pass" - History of the
88th Infantry Division. Size: 6 X 5
inch, 96 pages. For complete contents, see 88th Infantry Division.
"WW2 History of the 34th 'Red Bull' Division" - Another booklet issued to troops. The 34th Division probably had the highest time in service overseas and in combat. Therefore, their history was published in two booklets. See "34th Infantry Division".
Division Artillery" - Contains info on the officers and the
organization of the 45th Infantry Division. A chronology of
events and 4 maps for their service in Sicily, Italy, France &
Germany. Printed on nice glossy paper with photos. Size: 5-1/4
inch, 67 pages. SHEAF Field Press.
"Welcome to the 85th Division" - A small orientation booklet given to new recruits. Contains a brief history of the 85th Division and some advice about security and such. Printed in black with red cartoon illustrations. Size: 6 X 5 inch, 12 pages.
"Finito!; The Po Valley Campaign" - Printed HQ 15th Army Group, May 1945. A short history with maps, photos, including full page photos of several commanders. Size: 6 X 8 inch, 66 pages.
"Mission Accomplished: Africa, Sicily, Italy" - A souvenir booklet to take home to the family. Size: 10 X 7 inch, 24 pages on newspaper print. A flashy newspaper hand-out. Extermal Link of images of this booklet: Mission Accomplished.
Report by The Supreme Allied Commander Mediterranean to the Combined Cheifs of Staff on The Italian Campaign, 8 January 1944 to 10th May 1944 - A long title for a short softbound booklet written by General Maitland Wilson. Booklet discusses the operations and planning for Anzio. Contains some useful info on ships and British units from a British point-of-view. 43 pages. His Majesty's Stationery Office, 1946.
"A Soldier's Outline of Italian History" - Printed by Information Education Section of MTOUSA to inform the American soldier of the ancient history of Italy. Given to GI’s as a tour guide. 71 pages, 4 photos and 5 maps of Italy's states and regions. No publisher info or date (except MTOUSA would date it as WW2 booklet). Size: 6-3/4 X 4-3/4 inch.
"Souvenir Album of Rome" - A collection of 16 postcards of the sites of Rome issued to troops on their leave. Photos printed on good paper. Size: 9 X 6 inch. No publisher info or date.
"Milano; 24 Vedute Colorate" From my Dad's collection, so I assume it is a war publication. Small foldout booklet of postcards of the sites of Milan. Photos printed in color. Text in 5 languages. Size: 3 X 4 inch. No publisher info or date.Return to Top of Page
Official Records of 328th Field Artillery- A collection of documents obtained from Archives that contains simple memos about camp routine and awards. Memos recognize soldiers awarded the Good Conduct Medal, Purple Heart, and driving certificates. I presume any higher awards had to be issued by higher headquarters. A good source for names of members of the 328th FA Battalion. Reading through these, you feel sorry for the poor clerk who typed all of this on an ole Remington. Approximately 125 pages.
Operational Reports of 328th Field Artillery- Official, monthly report of the 328th Field Artillery Battalion during the war from April 1944 to May 1945. Obtained from National Archives. Follow link to Operational Report.
Army Issue Maps: For further description and photos of my map collection, go to Army Maps.
Army Group Photographs:
General WW2 Manuals & Material
Army Field Manuals:
Field Manuals were issued in two sizes: small pocket size and the 9 X 6 inch size. These are arranged in numerical order.
"The Biographical Dictionary of WW2" - Mark M. Boatner III. Biographical sketches of various military and political personalities of WW2. No photos. 733 pages, with 67 page Glossary and a Bibliography. Presidio Press 1996, Softbound. ISBN 0-89141-624-2.
"Army Badges and Insignia of WW2" - Guido Rosignoli. A small reference book of patches, insignia, rank badges of uniforms from the European countries involved in WW2. Includes some history of uniform and patches in text. Color drawings. 1972. See other book by Rosignoli.
Officer's Guide - Published by the Military Service Publishing Co.; 1943. Hardbound with dust jacket. Learn everything from orientation, uniforms, pay and allowances, forms, and much more related to the military -- as it was back then. Hardbound, 9th edition.
AAF -The Official Guide to the Army Air Corps - A booklet published for Army Air Corps personnel that provides into on the USAAF and details of Staff and aircraft and history of air war. Many photos, sketches and diagrams. 375 pages. Special Edition Printing June 1944. Original Printing, May 1944.
A Guide to U.S. Army Insignia and Decorations - by Gordon A. J. Petersen. A small pocket-size, hardback booklet with color drawings of insignias, patches and decorations. 62 pages and 160 illustrations. Copyright by Whitman Publishing Co., Revised Edition - 1942.
What's That Plane, How to Identify American and Jap Airplanes - Each page contains a black silhouette of aircraft and opposite page describes its "recognition points", such as type of wing, shape of cowling, etc. A few photos. Peguin Books of NY. Eighth Printing, May 1943.
& "This Damn Tree Leaks" - by
Mauldin. Bill's excellent work of his cartoons and
as a member of the 45th Division and
a writer for "Stars and Stripes". He recently passed
away on January 23, 2003. First Edition - 1943
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|Oct. 10, Sunday,
Their shells are dropping between 200-300 yards. Our nerves are jumpy. You should see my foxhole! The Lord better be on our side tonight or you will never see me. We buried a few more of our boys today. Are sure of many more tomorrow. Tis all.from un-published diary of Private Paul Brown,
Grave Registration Service, 179th Regiment, 45th Division