Montgomery was not among the leading lights of his class. The division moved to France with the British Expeditionary Force in that year for the so-called Phony War. Montgomery was upset with the decision as he believed he was a better general than Eisenhower, so as a consolation Prime Minister Churchill made him Field Marshal of all British forces on September 1, 1944. ." Nigel Hamilton , Monty, 3 vols., 1981–86. In Sicily, he was annoyed to be given a lesser role in the fighting. 16 Oct. 2020 . The Oxford Companion to British History. Montgomery retired in 1958 and went to live with his son David at Isington Mill in Alton, Hampshire, where he German field marshal known as the "Desert Fox" Heidelberg, Germany Montgomery believed that commanders who remained distant from their troops could not command as much loyalty and dedication as those who saw and talked to as many soldiers as possible. Finally, Eisenhower gave Montgomery permission to launch Operation Market-Garden, a combined air-ground attack planned to get British forces across the lower Rhine River in Holland. Please set a username for yourself. When Montgomery was two years old the family moved to Tasmania, an Australian island in the south Pacific Ocean, where his father had been appointed bishop. In England he became head of the 5th Corps in 1940, of the 12th Corps in 1941, and of the South East Command in 1942. Interesting Bernard Montgomery Facts: Montgomery married widow Elizabeth Carver in 1927. The battles in Sicily and Italy that followed the successful North African campaign were somewhat less glorious for Montgomery, for they exposed more of his weaknesses. (b. The troops landed behind Germany's line and faced stronger-than-expected resistance. 16 Oct. 2020 . ", During World War II, Montgomery had a pet terrier he named "Hitler.". American general Born November 17, 1887 London, England Died March 24, 1976 Alton, England British field marshal. France surrendered to the Germans on June 22. Encyclopedia of World Biography. ." now known as the broad-front versus narrow-front strategy. British Field Marshall Bernard Law Montgomery (1887-1976) was among the most decorated military leaders of World War II. Montgomery married widow Elizabeth Carver in 1927. . In this invasion the Allies hoped to get a foothold on the northern shores of France and then drive the Germans out of France and back into Germany. New York: Ballantine Books, 1967. Instead, he signed up with the Royal Warwickeshire Regiment, which had a battalion in India. ." Looking for a new commander for the 8th Army, Prime Minister Winston Churchill (1874-1965; see entry) considered Montgomery but ultimately chose General "Strafer" Gott. Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography. His life was saved by another soldier who had come to help him and was himself shot; the dead man's body fell over Montgomery and shielded him from taking further bullets. ." He told them: "Here we will stand and fight; there can be no further withdrawal… we will stand and fight here. He was to have captured Caen on D-day, but he took it only on the forty-second day of the campaign. Montgomery was sent as part of the British Expeditionary Force sent to help fight off a German invasion. John Whiteclay Chambers II "Montgomery, Bernard Law (October 16, 2020). He died in 1976 and was buried in a country churchyard near his home. . Yet Montgomery virtually destroyed two German field armies in the Argentan-Falaise pocket, closed on August 19, and he propelled the four Allied armies across the Seine River in a pursuit that came to an end only at the Siegfried Line. Montgomery's generalship came under criticism during the first 2 months of the European campaign be… ." . . In March, Montgomery took part in the final Anglo-American offensive in Tunisia, which swept the Axis forces entirely out of North Africa by May. When World War I (1914-18) began in 1914, he was immediately called into battle in France. Montgomery continued to have difficulty cooperating with his Allied colleagues, including—and most dangerously— Eisenhower. Once again, he worked hard on bolstering his troops' morale; one of the ways he did this was to travel around Normandy during and after the initial invasion to meet with the soldiers. Meanwhile, he focused on training and rigorous physical fitness to keep his men ready for possible attack. Born in 1900, he joined the British navy and served as a midshipman during World War I, specializing in the use of signals. ." Montgomery then tried to drive up the eastern coast to Messina, but his army was blocked at Catania, and American forces reached Messina first. . and of staff from 1939 to 1945 Hamilton, Nigel. Educated at St Paul’s School, he went on from there to the Royal Military College at Sandhurst. He moved to the Taranto and Bari areas of the eastern coast, where his forces captured the Foggia airfields by October 1. World Encyclopedia. Encyclopedia of World Biography. In terms of his personality, Montgomery was said to lack tack and was not very diplomatic. When . Montgomery crossed the Rhine River late in March 1945, helped encircle and reduce the industrial Ruhr, and swept across the northern German plain to the Elbe River. Montgomery was the fourth of nine children born to a clergyman and his wife. In the spring of 1940, the Kelly was almost sunk several times by torpedoes from German airplanes. Elizabeth died of an infection in 1937. JOHN CANNON "Montgomery, Bernard Even though his abrasive personality and arrogance had made him unpopular with some people, Montgomery's skills and experience were noted by his superior officers. Montgomery's own books include El Alamein to the River Sangro (1948), Normandy to the Baltic (1948), Memoirs (1958), The Path to Leadership (1961), and A History of Warfare (1968). He fought in France during World War I and was mentioned in dispatches for gallantry in action. World War II Reference Library. When he retired in 1965, Mountbatten had reached the rank of admiral of the fleet. Bernard C. Harris Publishing Company, Inc. https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/educational-magazines/montgomery-bernard, https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/bernard-law-montgomery, https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/montgomery-bernard-law, https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/montgomery-bernard. The British 8th Army had been fighting Rommel's troops in the desert and were exhausted and demoralized. The Oxford Companion to American Military History, Marshall, George C. "Bernard Law Montgomery In July 1942 he was appointed commander of the British 8th Army in Egypt, a position that marked the beginning of his rise to fame. It was largely Montgomery's plan, one of concentrated rather than dispersed landings, that dictated the invasion of Sicily on July 10, 1943. Montgomery's own books include El Alamein to the River Sangro (1948), Normandy to the Baltic (1948), Memoirs (1958), The Path to Leadership (1961), and A History of Warfare (1968). People will see it as Author Name with your public flash cards. He was later quoted saying about the experience, "I shall be sorry to leave Palestine in many ways, as I have enjoyed the war out here. Military leader Although he was a hero to many people, he was also a controversial figure; it is said that he possessed a difficult personality—his bluntness, egotism, and stubborn streak often got him into trouble with his military colleagues. Pasadena, California Montgomery's generalship came under criticism during the first 2 months of the European campaign because of his alleged caution and slowness. Thompson, R. W. The Montgomery Legend. Meanwhile, Montgomery had been made a field marshal, the highest rank in the British army. He started the discussion Eventually, in fighting off the Greek island of Crete, the ship was sunk and Mountbatten almost drowned. It was largely Montgomery's plan, one of concentrated rather than dispersed landings, that dictated the invasion of Sicily on July 10, 1943. Considered by some historians the greatest British general of all time, Bernard Montgomery was the best known and most successful officer to lead British troops during World War II. He was rescued and taken to a hospital in England. Just before the outbreak of World War II he was assigned to command the Fifth Destroyer Fleet. . Cite this article Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography. (October 16, 2020). ." In July 1942 he was appointed commander of the British 8th Army in Egypt, a position that marked the beginning of his rise to fame. 16 Oct. 2020 . In the years between World War I and World War II, Montgomery served in a number of locations around the world, rising steadily through the ranks of the army. By continuing, you agree to our During the 1930s, Montgomery served in India, Egypt, and Palestine (where he helped in the effort to keep peace between Arabs and Jews). Montgomery's experiences during World War I strongly affected his attitude toward the military—especially how officers should treat the troops serving under them. After the war, Mountbatten (who was named Earl Mountbatten of Burma in 1947) became viceroy of India, which was still a British colony. He was promoted to field marshal on the same day. The Oxford Companion to American Military History. https://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/montgomery-bernard-law-1st-viscount-montgomery-alamein, Turning Points: The Allies Begin to Win the War. In later years, Montgomery would be criticized for refusing to begin battles before his plans, troops, and equipment were ready, but those fighting under his command appreciated his concern for their lives. After their return to London in 1901, Montg… The English field marshal Bernard Law Montgomery, 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein (1887-1976), was an outstanding commander and hero of the British people during World War II. Montgomery left much of the detailed battle planning to his staff—especially his trusted chief of staff, Francis de Guingand—and concentrated instead on building up his men's fighting spirit. "Montgomery, Bernard In addition to being 21st Army Group commander, he was named the Allied ground forces commander for the invasion of Normandy. After twelve days of fierce fighting, the 8th Army emerged victorious and chased the He died on March 24, 1976, in Alton, Hampshire. ." In 1943 Mountbatten was transferred to another part of the world, becoming Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in Southeast Asia, where, said Churchill, "a young and vigorous mind" was needed. The March to Tunis: The North African War, 1940-1943, Montgomery, the Field Marshal: The Campaign in Northwest Europe, 1944/45. Encyclopedia of World Biography. Although Montgomery pursued Rommel, he was unable to trap him. His mother was stern and too busy with her church work to devote much time to her children. In a last desperate attempt to gain some ground, the Germans had managed to push the Allies back along one portion of the front, creating a "bulge" in the line. While Eisenhower favored a "broad front" approach to moving the troops forward, Montgomery pushed him to adopt a "single thrust" approach. Bernard spent much of his childhood on the Australian island of Tasmania, but returned to England in 1897. Like Montgomery, Mountbatten knew that personal attention from high-level commanders could lift the men's spirits, so he began to visit as many units as possible, trying to convince the troops that their role was important and appreciated. Encyclopedia.com. Montgomery relinquished his command of the Allied ground forces to Eisenhower on Sept. 1, 1944, a change contemplated long before the invasion. In September, Montgomery's plan, nicknamed Operation Market Garden, was to land Allied troops behind the northernmost section of Germany's front line, and create a gap through which more troops could pour in and surround the