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          This essay began as an assignment for Dr. Russell F. Weigley's graduate level course on World War II at Temple University. Professor Weigley (a highly respected American military historian, author of A Great Civil War, for which he was recently awarded the prestigious Lincoln Prize, The American Way of War, Eisenhower's Lieutenants, and A History of the United States Army among others) asked his students to pick a topic relating to the war and read and review approximately ten secondary sources to determine "what historians have to say about that particular topic." I chose the Huertgen Forest campaign in Germany during the fall of 1944. Professor Weigley had this to say about the finished product:

You have written a generally strong paper, fulfilling well the assignment to write a critical, comparative historiographical essay. I believe, however, that if you are to take on the interpretation of the Huertgen Forest battles that have persisted since the war, you need to offer a more persuasive argument for hitting the forest head-on than you do on pp. 25-26 [of the original copy]. It remains difficult to justify the casualties that were suffered to dig out immobile German troops. Still, the point is not so much that you have failed to persuade me. More important, your analysis needs to be expressed more clearly and cleanly than your often awkward literary style in this paper manages to do. (Although I much like your introduction) B+ (Russell Weigley, hand-written comments as appeared on original essay assignment, December, 2000).

          The paper has been revised first, to include more information pertaining to the 8th Infantry Division's role in the Huertgen Forest campaign and the coverage the unit receives in the aforementioned texts. I plan to distribute this essay to veterans of the 13th Infantry and their families at an upcoming reunion of the 13th Infantry Regiment Association in Philadelphia. It is my hopes to not only provide new information to the veterans and their families, but also to introduce them to the available literature concerning this often overshadowed campaign. Secondly, I hope the revision has cleared up some of the awkwardness Professor Weigley had referred to although the historian's craft is often a long and arduous journey. I am fortunate to sit at the feet of one of the true masters of military history.

Gregory N. Canellis
September 9, 2001.

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