French Battlefields Lecture Series for Remainder of 2023


French Battlefields offers programs on a variety of First and Second World War military engagements. These programs are sponsored by local educational, social, or historical organizations and may be available in person only or by a combination of in-person and virtual formats. Please check with the sponsoring organization for registration requirements.
For descriptions of all French Battlefields lectures please see:

To schedule a program for your audience, please contact:

Naval Battles of the Second World War
– Ela Area Public Library District on November 6, 2023 at 7:00pm (Part 1)

The Generals: Patton, Rommel, and Montgomery
– Arlington Heights Memorial Library on November 10, 2023 at 1:30pm

Pearl Harbor – A Day of Infamy
– Grayslake Area Library on December 5, 2023 at 7:00pm

– Batavia Public Library on December 7, 2023 at 2:00pm

– Lisle Library District on December 9, 2023 at 2:00pm

Operation Market Garden: Airborne Invasion of the Netherlands Review

A guide crafted for people interested in touring historic battle sites by car, Mueller’s examination of the failed World War II Allied Operation: Market Garden is remarkably thorough as it encompasses both the wider plan for this invasion of the occupied Netherlands as well as the actions of individual soldiers and civilians. In a methodical fashion, Mueller offers an abundance of historical detail while still providing a crisp overview of the mission and the goals of the major divisions involved (including the American 101st and 82nd Airborne). Each division’s mission is broken down into surveys of individual actions and battles, complete with summaries, maps, extensive footnotes offering additional biographical information, and specific coordinates for those visiting modern memorials.

A wealth of fascinating anecdotes accompanies the overarching details of the operation. Mueller’s account emphasizes a crucial truth: No matter how an operation is planned by the officers, it’s up to the courage of the soldiers to carry them out. He illustrates this with stories of bravery and ingenuity from soldiers and civilians, including the Dutch resistance fighter cutting wires to a bridge that the Germans were going to destroy, the soldiers who escape a hospital prison on foot, and the farmer who talks Germans out of using a bridge by telling them it’s too fragile. Mueller’s judgment at times is harsh, especially on the British officers whose arrogant planning failures that led directly to the deaths of thousands.

The book’s practical purpose makes it a tough straight-ahead read, even for armchair historians. Instead, it’s intended as a field guide, and as such it’s jammed with invaluable details that would illuminate a traveler’s experience. The exercise of reading these accounts where they actually occurred supports Mueller’s idea that war is always a traumatic local experience dependent on the actions of individuals. When those individuals are betrayed by bad planning, the sacrifices become even more tragic.

Takeaway: Readers interested in the minutia of military operations will be fascinated by this guide’s thoroughness.
Great for fans of: Cornelius Ryan’s A Bridge Too Far, John Buckley’s Operation Market Garden: The Campaign For the Low Countries 1944: Seventy Years On.

Production grades
Cover: A
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: A
Editing: A
Marketing copy: A-

— Booklife Review

The Bulge Battlefields Reviewed

The Bulge Battlefields
Having already penned “Fields of War: Battle of Normandy,” author Robert J. Mueller returns with this in-depth look at America’s largest battle of the Second World War, the Ardennes Offensive which is more commonly referred to as the Battle of the Bulge. There is necessarily a lot of history here but the book is a field guide, put together with the intent of helping visitors get the most out of a visit to Battle of the Bulge battlefields. So for example in the chapter entitled Battle for Elsenborn Ridge, Mueller first provides an overview before giving a comprehensive synopsis of each significant battle within the campaign: Monschau, Krinkelterwald and Lausdell Crossroads to name a few. Within each sub-section Mueller explains the specific objectives of German and American forces and explains the outcome of the battle including casualty numbers. But the real treasure here lies in the explicit directions that Mueller gives that enable the battlefield visitor to trace troop movements and locate still-standing remnants like German bunkers, command posts, machine gun barriers and even tanks. Battlefield maps are included as are suggested touring routes and directions to memorials and museums. And so it goes for the battles covered in the additional six chapters. Mueller has really done most of the work for potential battlefield visitors and for them “The Bulge Battlefields” will be an indispensable companion during their adventure; those who aren’t able to make it to Europe for a first-hand look will find the book a wealth of well-presented information that will no doubt fill in holes in what they may already know about the Battle of the Bulge.
– Kevin Wierzbicki’s Travel News, Trips, and Tips

New Battlefield Visitor’s Guide now available

French Battlefields announces the second volume in our Second World War battlefields series.

The Bulge Battlefields
By Robert J Mueller

The Bulge Battlefields provides a comprehensive historian’s or traveler’s guide to the Battle of the Bulge (Ardennes Offensive) —Americas largest battle of the Second World War.

As a visitor’s guide, The Bulge Battlefields presents the actual locations of key events in the struggle to defeat Germany’s last offensive of the war. Each battlefield visit begins with a succinct history of events followed by a description of the intense military action that determined success or failure. The narrative revolves around the stories of the privates, NCOs, and junior officers whose sacrifices made success possible. Extensive detailed maps illustrate the flow of the battle across the landscape and the units that participated. Detailed driving instructions and 550 GPS co-ordinates direct visitors to each battlefield site. Descriptions of museums, memorials, cemeteries, and surviving artifacts are given along with their hours of operation. Mailing, email, and web addresses are also provided.

The text includes locations and contact details for:
– 23 Museums
– 182 Monuments or Memorials
– 21 Farthest Advance Stones
– 19 WW II Tanks
– 18 Region Tourist Offices
– Westwall Bunkers
– Commemorative Walking Tours
– Dozens of awards for Bravery and Sacrifice

ISBN: 978-0-9823677-5-9
480 PAGES plus
6″ X 9″ (15.2cm X 22.8cm)

Available from, Gazelle Book Services (UK), or directly from the publisher at frenchbattlefields