========


PREFACE


This study The Stars and Stripes, a United States Armed Forces newspaper, covers the period from June 6, 1944, to August 21, 1944, dates which correspond to the beginning and the end of the Battle of Normandy in World War II. On August 21, 1944, isolated German troops were still fighting in the ”Falaise pocket” in Lower Normandy, but, in the middle of the valley, the only road to escape was completely surrounded by Allied artillery and the long battle soon came to an end.


This period in the history of The Stars and Stripes is marked by the publication of four different editions. The first edition of The Stars and Stripes appearing in Normandy was volume 4, N° 189, dated Monday, June 12, 1944, - a special edition entitled “Liberation Issue”. This issue is an eight-page issue. Volume 4 was printed at The Times Publishing Company Limited, Printing House Square, London. Under study will be the London Times Edition from Monday, June 12, 1944 to Monday, July 3, 1944, since, although printed in England, it was distributed daily to the troops in Normandy. The “Liberation Issue” covers the period from Tuesday, June 6, 1944 to Saturday, June 10, 1944. It was printed six times a week and transported to the beachhead via army airplane. Nineteen issues were published from Tuesday, June 6 to Monday, July 3, 1944
.


Normandy 44 liberation of Saint-lô


Also to be studied is the beachhead edition of The Stars and Stripes printed in Sainte- Mère-Eglise by Charles Kiley on Friday, June 16, 1944. Only one issue of the mimeographed beachhead news sheet, Volume 1, N°1, carrying the above date, can be studied. This edition, the photocopy of which is reproduced in Appendix C, can be consulted at the New York Public Library. It is the only issue from the beachhead found until today. Several issues were mimeographed, but the author-editor, Charles Kiley, does not remember for how long he printed this beachhead edition. Then, about June 20, a detachment of The Stars and Stripes, led by its editor-in-chief, Lieutenant-Colonel Ensley M. Llewellyn, arrived in Carentan a few miles from the front, a town which had been liberated on June 12, 1944. This Carentan episode in the story of The Stars and Stripes will also be considered.


From Tuesday, July 4, 1944 to Saturday, August 19, 1944, the Continental edition of The Stars and Stripes was printed at the Cherbourg Eclair plant in Cherbourg, which had been liberated on June 26, 1944 : this edition will constitute the main part of this study. The staff of The Stars and Stripes next moved to Rennes on Sunday, August 20, 1944, and printed the first issue of the Rennes edition at l’Ouest Journal plant in Rennes on Monday, August 21, 1944. The first issue of this edition, which is Volume 1, N° 42, corresponds to the closing of the Falaise gap and will be considered only briefly at the end of this study.

 


 

Under study in the following pages will be not only the evolution of these various editions, but also, and primarily the form and contents of this military newspaper printed and distributed during the crucial period of the opening of the Second Front on the European continent. These contents include editorials, news from the different fronts, news from the United States, articles from Stars and Stripes staff writers with the fighting forces, reports by Ernie Pyle, a Scripps-Howard correspondent, on the situation and activities on the Normandy Front, sports news and major and minor baseball leagues standings, cartoons and comic strips, and very few photographs. But for a better understanding of this study, the reader will certainly be interested in the history of this U. S. Armed Forces newspaper which began during the American Civil war.

summary | chapters | preface | presentation | sources | testimonials | home