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Descriptive Summary and Abstract

Historical Note

Scope and Content Note

Restrictions

Online Index Terms

Separated Material

Administrative Information

Description of Series

Item 1. World War II Map of Italy: Sheet 160 Cassino, Sheet 161 Isernia, ca. 1943

Cushing Memorial Library, Texas A & M University

Inventory of World War II Map of Italy : Sheet 160 Cassino and Sheet 161 Isernia:

ca. 1943



Descriptive Summary and Abstract

Creator Great Britain. War Office. General Staff. Geographical Section.
Title Inventory of World War II Map of Italy : Sheet 160 Cassino and Sheet 161 Isernia
Dates ca. 1943
Abstract This map, created by joining sections of two topographic maps, one for the Cassino area of Italy, the other for the Isernia area, creates a single focus for military activities of the Allied Forces soon after the invasion of Italy began on 9 September 1943 with the landing of American troops at Salerno, and just before the battle of Monte Cassino, fought in four major engagements from 12 Jan-19 May 1944. The taking of the monastery of Monte Cassino, which punctuated the line of German fortifications called the Gustav Line, was finally accomplished after bitter fighting by American, French, Canadian, British, and perhaps, most memorably, Polish forces, who are credited with finally taking the rubbled monastery itself at very great cost. Although the owner of the map is not identified, the inscriptions of observations of various military actions, labeled by time and oriented to the military grid on the map, primarily of the Isernia area, attest to heavy fighting southwest of the town of S. Pietro Infine, much apparently centered on the town of Mignano. This Mignano Gap area was taken by American forces in mid-December 1943, but represented only a step in the arduous push northward toward breaking the Gustav Line by crossing the Rapido River and taking Monte Cassino. Two topographical maps marked with military grid lines, originally published in 1941 by the British War Office, but apparently used by American forces in this instance, one for Cassino, Italy (sheet 160), the other for Isernia, Italy (Sheet 161), appear to have been joined with linen tape along the south grid number 96 for each one. The map legend is missing on both sections, but major roads are not only marked in red, but stamped with numbers. The Isernia map is inscribed on the lower half of the back of it mostly in pencil, but with a few notes in ink. The inscriptions, possibly in several different hands, record times of day by military clock, and locations numerically oriented on the military grid map for various military actions. These actions include remarks on place and type of artillery or small arms fire, observations on the taking of prisoners of war, and other actions in the area southwest of the Rapido River and the town of Cassino. According to the orientation of the action, these notes apparently record fighting by Allied forces against the German army in the Mignano Gap region preceding the Battle of Monte Cassino (12 Jan-19 May 1944). The linen tape joining the two maps appears to have been added after inscriptions made on Isernia map, but most likely during the campaign itself, to be useful for the entire area involved in the Battle of Monte Cassino. Polish troops, the 7th Infantry and the name Custer are mentioned. The Isernia map is also inscribed in ink in the margin at the top with "Knapp - 31309661, K Co."
Identification Ragan MSS 00114
Extent 1 item
Quantity: (50 x 72 cm.)
Language English.
Repository Cushing Memorial Library,  College Station, TX 77843-5000

Historical Note

This map, created by joining sections of two topographic maps, one for the Cassino area of Italy, the other for the Isernia area, creates a single focus for military activities of the Allied Forces soon after the invasion of Italy began on 9 September 1943 with the landing of American troops at Salerno, and just before the battle of Monte Cassino, fought in four major engagements from 12 Jan-19 May 1944. The taking of the monastery of Monte Cassino, which punctuated the line of German fortifications called the Gustav Line, was finally accomplished after bitter fighting by American, French, Canadian, British, and perhaps, most memorably, Polish forces who are credited with finally taking the rubbled monastery itself at very great cost. Although the owner of the map is not identified, the inscriptions of observations of various military actions, labeled by time and oriented to the military grid on the map, primarily of the Isernia area, attest to heavy fighting southwest of the town of S. Pietro Infine, much apparently centered on the town of Mignano. This Mignano Gap area was taken by American forces in mid-December 1943, but represented only a step in the arduous push northward toward breaking the Gustav Line by crossing the Rapido River and taking Monte Cassino.

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Scope and Content Note

Two topographical maps marked with military grid lines, originally published in 1941 by the British War Office, but apparently used by American forces in this instance, one for Cassino, Italy (sheet 160), the other for Isernia, Italy (Sheet 161), appear to have been joined with linen tape along the south grid number 96 for each one. The map legend is missing on both sections, but major roads are not only marked in red, but stamped with numbers. The Isernia map is inscribed on the lower half of the back of it mostly in pencil, but with a few notes in ink. The inscriptions, possibly in several different hands, record times of day by military clock, and locations numerically oriented on the military grid map for various military actions. These actions include remarks on place and type of artillery or small arms fire, observations on the taking of prisoners of war, and other actions in the area southwest of the Rapido River and the town of Cassino. According to the orientation of the action, these notes apparently record fighting by Allied forces against the German army in the Mignano Gap region preceding the Battle of Monte Cassino (12 Jan-19 May 1944). The linen tape joining the two maps appears to have been added after inscriptions made on Isernia map, but most likely during the campaign itself, to be useful for the entire area involved in the Battle of Monte Cassino. Polish troops, the 7th Infantry and the name Custer are mentioned. The Isernia map is also inscribed in ink in the margin at the top with "Knapp - 31309661, K Co."

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Restrictions

Access

No restrictions.

Usage Restrictions

Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

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Online Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the online catalog of Cushing Memorial Library. Researchers wishing to find related materials should search the catalog under these index terms.
Subjects
World War, 1939-1945--Campaigns--Italy--Maps.
Military topography--Italy--Cassino.
Military topography--Italy--Isernia.
Maps, Military.
Places
Cassino (Italy)--Maps, Topographic.
Isernia (Italy)--Maps, Topographic.

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Separated Material

As an item separated from the other manuscript collections:

Map is stored in Cushing Memorial Library Basement, Map Case D, Drawer 2.

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Administrative Information

Provenance

Purchased from Arthur Lee. Hall, Jr., through John A. McCall of Houston in 1989.

Processing Information

Processed by Aletha Andrew in August 2002.

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Detailed Description of the Map

 

Item 1. World War II Map of Italy: Sheet 160 Cassino, Sheet 161 Isernia, ca. 1943

Two colored topographic maps, one of Cassino, Italy, the other of Isernia, Italy, in Transverse Mercator Projection with military grid lines, joined into one sheet, measuring 50 x 72 cm., showing cities, towns, rivers, streams, roads (major roads in red stamped with numbers), railroads, with relief shown by countour lines and spot heights. Published by the War Office of Great Britain, originally in 1941, though both sections have date of 1943 for the second edition. Both maps are designated part of the series "Geographical Section, General Staff, No. 4164." Maps may have been reproduced by the U.S. Army Map Service. Maps joined at South 96 grid line, with linen tape which goes around back up map and up onto top and bottom margins, obscuring some printed information. The Isernia map is inscribed on back with a chronology of battle action, and with a possible serial number 31309661 and company designation K for a soldier named Knapp.

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