© WW2 Market Garden -
17 September 1944:
Early in the afternoon the paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division jumped on the drop zones at Groesbeek, Overasselt and Grave. Elements of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment (PIR) jump from their C-
The 505th was confronted with some enemy resistance but were quickly able to repulse the attacks and secure the area. The Grave bridge was also taken swiftly by paratroopers of E-
Because of a misunderstanding between the commander of the 508th, Colonel Roy Lindquist and the Division Commander Brig-
18 September 1944:
During the night, troops of the 508th tried in vain to capture the bridge over the Waal at Nijmegen. The Germans had set up defenses around the bridge which were hard to destroy by the lightly armed paratroopers of the the 82nd Airborne Division. While Company A and B were still fighting for Nijmegen, other elements of the 508th attacked westwards towards the Maas-
In the morning of the 18th, the Germans launched several attacks at Groesbeek and Mook. With a makeshift force, consisting of soldiers from regular army, air force and navy units, the Germans attacked drop zone N and were able to overrun drop zone T, which was lightly defended by a small force of the 508th. With these drop zones under pressure by the enemy, the 82nd Airborne Division found itself in a precarious situation.
Reinforcements were supposed to land on drop zone N and T today and if the Germans were able to capture the drop zones it would become a massacre. The entire 505th was ordered to defend drop zone N and was able to do that successfully. The 508th had to call back all its troops from Nijmegen and the Maas-
The second lift coming from England could safely drop reinforcements on the drop zones once again. Just after the landings of the reinforcements, American bombers were also able to drop supplies on the drop zones at Overasselt and Groesbeek of which 80% was salvaged.
19 September 1944:
After a long delay, XXX-
The lines of the 505th in between Mook and Groesbeek were also under constant pressure by German attacks. The 505th eventually was able to withstand all the attacks but was in need of reinforcement.
20 September 1944:
The previous day, Gavin had come up with a plan to take the road bridge at Nijmegen. He wanted the 504th to clear the western suburbs of Nijmegen, put them in boats just west of the Nijmegen railroad bridge, and put them across the Waal so they were able to attack the north side of the road bridge. While the 504th attacked the north side of the bridge, the 505th, together with tanks from the Guards Armoured Division would assault the southern side of the road bridge. If these troops were able to succeed, the bridge at Nijmegen would be safe to cross for XXX-
At 14.00 hours the 505th, supported by the tanks of the Grenadier Guards, launched their attack on the southern ramp of the Nijmegen road bridge. They were also successful and at 18.30 hours, two tanks of the Grenadier Guards had been able to cross the Nijmegen bridge and linked up with troops of the 504th on the other side.
While the troops at Nijmegen were trying to capture the road bridge over the Waal, the rest of the 82nd Airborne Division around Groesbeek, Berg en Dal and Mook had to endure the first major German attack on the corridor. German forces of the 3rd and 5th Fallschirmjäger Divisions, supported by tanks, artillery and air support attacked numerous positions of the 505th and the 508th. The Germans were able to reach Berg en Dal and Beek and fought around the ‘Duivelsberg’, a piece of high ground in that area. The Duivelsberg was defended by a small force of the 508th, but they were able to withstand the attacks for two days. Mook had fallen into German hands. In the upcoming days Mook would swith hands numerous times. With the corridor now under pressure at Mook, the 505th together with the Coldstream Guards fought back the German attackers and were able to retake the village in the evening.
With numerous losses in the infantry regiments of the 82nd Airborne Division, Gavin was in dying need of reinforcements, he even rushed in the glider pilots to help with the defense of Mook. But the airlift containing reinforcements (especially the 325th Glider Infantry Regiment) which had to be flown in from England had not been able to take off from British airfields due to bad weather.
21 September 1944:
The 508th continued fighting for Beek. After several attempts to retake the village it was back in allied hands in the evening of the 21st. The 504th held its newly acquired ground at Lent and witnessed the crossing of tanks and trucks over the Nijmegen bridge. XXX-
22 September 1944:
With more and more tanks of XXX-
23 September 1944:
After days of delays due to bad weather conditions in England, the 325th Glider Infantry Regiment and other supporting units of the 82nd Airborne Division were able to leave England and were flown over to land on the drop-
The 508th held the line at Beek. They asked for the help of the 8th Armoured Brigade Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry, part of XXX-
After 7 days of battle all along the corridor and with the bridge at Arnhem lost, it was obvious that operation Market Garden failed to succeed. The 82nd Airborne Division consolidated their positions at Mook, Groesbeek, Beek and Nijmegen. They stayed in the Nijmegen area until early November before being taken off the frontline.