"The most significant battle of WWII that no one has heard of..."
THE BATTLE OF HERRLISHEIM 8-19 January 1945
This battle that lasted almost two weeks is seen in our museum as a SEVEN -PART diorama series with amazing clarity of seven specific moments in history. These diorama's were not only taken from pictures on file, but also the stories and memories of many of our veterans as THEY dictated how buildings should look, placement of items and who was laying where!
Each stop, whether using a listening wand or reading the written encounter helps our visitors understand the horrid time in Herrlisheim - many men call it "Bloody Herrlisheim" as 2/3rd's of the Division's force was killed, wounded or captured at Herrlisheim.
The Battle of Herrlisheim- The 12 day Battle of Herrlisheim occurred when the 12th Armored
Division was ordered into the city to blunt a German attack across a bridgehead
established at Gambsheim. The battle was part of a larger German offensive
entitled Operation Nordwind. The offensive occurred slightly more than a week
after the conclusion of the Battle of the Bulge, and consisted of a large
reserve force which had not been committed to that battle. The 12th
Armored Division faced elements of seven different German divisions, including
three crack Divisions of the SS. The objective of Nordwind was to punch through
the Seventh Army’s thin front line and capture Strasbourg- the capital of the
Alsace region of France, which had just been liberated in November of 1944.
Strasbourg falling to the Germans a second time would have had dire political
consequences- General DeGaulle having stated that its fall would fracture the
Alliance, with France refusing to fight under Allied command. A secondary
objective was the capture of Nancy immediately to the west of Strasbourg- it
contained massive Allied stores of fuel, weapons and vehicles. With Allied
strategic bombing having destroyed most German industry, the Wehrmacht’s only
hope of re-supply was to capture Allied materiel.
But there are more Diorama's --
This one celebrates the end of the War
The 12th Armored Division Men are also recognized liberators; below is a diorama of the hutments that were used at Hurlach IV; a sub camp of Dachau.
We are so much MORE than "just a WWII" museum - we have the personal stories of over 17,000 men, stories of POW's, Stories of concentration camp survivors, stories of French and German Citizens who helped the 12th Men as they fought to end the war!
Call us Today to ask questions about the museum
OPEN Tuesday - Saturday 10 am to 5 pm
(CLOSED for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years)
Senior Citizens/Military (Active and retired)/ Students -- $4
Children 7-12 --$2
Children 6 and under -- FREE
WWII VETERANS -- FREE