Though achieving surprise was unlikely, Clark made no provision for a pre-invasion naval bombardment despite evidence from the Pacific that suggested this was required. These efforts resulted in a successful campaign that led to the overthrow of Italian leader Benito Mussolini in late July 1943. The Salerno battle was also the site of a mutiny by about 600 men of the British 10th Corps, who on September 16 refused assignment to new units as replacements. With operations in Sicily coming to close in mid-August, the Allied leadership renewed discussions regarding an invasion of Italy. Though American leaders such as General George C. Marshall favored moving forward with an invasion of France, his British counterparts desired a strike against southern Europe. ThoughtCo uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. This assault gained ground until stopped by a last-ditch defense by the 36th Infantry Division. Capri Boat full day tour with Cranchi 32 ", https:/…Museo_dello_sbarco_e_Salerno_Capitale, abbaziamontecassino.org/abbey/index.php/en/, http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html, Salerno to Amalfi and Positano in August by boat, what is the best way to get to capri from salerno in march, Trogir Croatia to Plitvice lakes and Zagreb. During the course of the invasion of Italy, Allied forces sustained 2,009 killed, 7,050 wounded, and 3,501 missing while German casualties numbered around 3,500. Though further south, Salerno was chosen due to its calmer surf conditions, proximity to Allied air bases, and the existing road network beyond the beaches. Having meticulously planned our upcoming trip to Salerno, we're in the middle of a bit of a u-turn. Responsibility for the initial landings fell to the British 46th and 56th Divisions in the north and the U.S. 36th Infantry Division in the south. In September 1943, 191 soldiers of Montgomery's 8th Army downed guns and refused to take part in the battle for Salerno in southern Italy. Still hampered by poor road conditions, Montgomery dispatched light forces up the coast. On September 16, forward patrols from this detachment made contact with the 36th Infantry Division. The Allied invasion of Italy took place September 3–16, 1943, during World War II (1939–1945). Having meticulously planned our upcoming trip to (ta && ta.queueForLoad ? more. Tasked with seizing Naples and driving across to the east coast to cut off enemy forces to the south, Operation Avalanche called for landing on a broad, 35-mile front to the south of Salerno. At Salerno, Allied warships fired more than 11,000 tons of shells in support of the ground forces. On October 1, Allied forces entered Naples as von Vietinghoff's men withdrew into the positions of the Volturno Line. Planning for the invasion fell to Supreme Allied Commander in the Mediterranean, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, and the commander of the 15th Army Group, General Sir Harold Alexander. If you are a resident of another country or region, please select the appropriate version of Tripadvisor for your country or region in the drop-down menu. In the north, Army Group B, under Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, assumed responsibility as far south as Pisa. Landing in July, American and British forces came ashore near Gela and south of Syracuse. As additional reinforcements arrived, Clark's men were able to turn back German attacks on September 14 with the aid of naval gunfire. Kennedy Hickman is a historian, museum director, and curator who specializes in military and naval history. ta.queueForLoad : function(f, g){document.addEventListener('DOMContentLoaded', f);})(function(){ta.trackEventOnPage('postLinkInline', 'impression', 'postLinks-86120183', '');}, 'log_autolink_impression');Salerno, but if you're up to a day trip or on route to Rome you may want to stop at Cassino and visit Monte Cassino. There are several on the page that might interest you... https://www.youtube.com/watch…. The Allied invasion of Italy took place September 3–16, 1943, during World War II (1939–1945). We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one. Though they encountered some German resistance, the greatest impediment to their advance came in the form of demolished bridges, mines, and roadblocks. Fully occupied on their front, the British were unable to press south to link up with the Americans. If anyone is able to assist in any way, or just point me in the direction of a starting point / resources, I would be very grateful. Kesselring agreed on September 17 and on the night of the 18/19th, German forces began pulling back from the beachhead. It was hoped that these landings would draw German forces south, allowing them to be trapped in southern Italy by the later Avalanche landings on September 9. Aware of the Allies' approach, German forces on the heights behind the beaches prepared for the landings. In response, the Germans initiated Operation Achse, which saw them disarm Italian units and take over the defense of key points. With the battle at Salerno raging, Montgomery was pressed by Alexander to hasten Eighth Army's advance north. Blocked by these defenses, the Allies finally broke through in May 1944 following the Battles of Anzio and Monte Cassino. Each of these operations was deemed either unnecessary or unsupportable and was dismissed. However, I'm struggling to get to grips with what's accessible and how to go about planning a day that takes this particular piece of history in. He has appeared on The History Channel as a featured expert. Not believing that any enemy landings in Calabria or other areas in the south would be the main Allied effort, Kesselring left these areas lightly defended and directed troops to delay any advances by destroying bridges and blocking roads. On September 15, having sustained heavy losses and failed to break through the Allied lines, Kesselring put the 16th Panzer Division and 29th Panzergrenadier Division on the defensive. To the north, XIV Panzer Corps continued their attacks but were defeated by Allied forces supported by airpower and naval gunfire. In assessing options for invading Italy, the Americans initially hoped to come ashore in the northern part of the country, but the range of Allied fighters limited potential landing areas to the Volturno river basin and the beaches around Salerno. With the Italian capitulation, the Allies commenced Operation Slapstick on September 9, which called for British and U.S. warships to ferry the British 1st Airborne Division into the port of Taranto. Assigned to Montgomery's Eighth Army, Baytown was scheduled for September 3. "The highlight is the crypt, containing the supposed tomb of St Matthew, with the ceiling completely covered with stunning frescoes depicting scenes from the life of Jesus - they just take your breath away." Prime Minister Winston Churchill ardently advocated for attacking through what he termed "the soft underbelly of Europe," as he believed that Italy could be knocked out of the war and the Mediterranean opened to Allied shipping. To their right, McCreery's corps encountered fierce German resistance and required naval gunfire support to move inland. Also, as the Italians had approached the Allies with peace overtures, it was hoped that much of the country could be occupied before German troops arrived in large numbers. This task largely fell to General Traugott Herr's LXXVI Panzer Corps. Not believing that the Germans would give battle in Calabria, Montgomery came to oppose Operation Baytown as he felt that it placed his men too far from the main landings at Salerno. Having secured the beachhead, Clark turned north and began attacking towards Naples on September 19. Tonnes of history here during the war. This is the version of our website addressed to speakers of English in the United States. On September 9, Clark's forces began moving towards the beaches south of Salerno. Having (very!) Pushing inland, the troops of Lieutenant General George S. Patton's Seventh Army and General Sir Bernard Montgomery's Eighth Army pushed back the Axis defenders. Over the next three days, Clark worked to land additional troops and expand the Allied lines. As night fell, the British had achieved an advance inland of between five to seven miles while the Americans held the plain to the south of the Sele and gained around five miles in some areas. Having (very!) recently discovered that my grandpa fought in the battle of Salerno I would like to give over some time while in the area to WWII sites. As it became increasingly clear that resources were not available for a cross-Channel operation in 1943, President Franklin Roosevelt agreed to the invasion of Sicily.