Cyber Crucible

Escaping No Man's Land: Combined Arms Adaptation in the Meuse-Argonne

Maj. John M. Nimmons

This is a reprint of Chapter 5 from Bringing Order to Chaos: Historical Case Studies of Combined Arms Maneuver in Large-Scale Combat Operations, part of The Large-Scale Combat Operations Series.



Unwilling or unable to work outside of the existing paradigm, many senior American officers treated doctrine like dogma and failed to understand the true test of doctrine was the reality of battle and that doctrine had to be refined—even radically altered if necessary—to be useful.

—Mark Grotelueschen, The AEF Way of War


During the first two phases of the Meuse-Argonne offensive in World War I, combined arms maneuver was a metaphorical "no man's land" for many in V Corps because many in the organization struggled to bridge the gap between operational processes at corps level and divisional innovation on the front line. Staffs within V Corps oversimplified the complexity of the battlefield they faced because of an over-reliance on existing doctrine. As a result, V Corps and its divisions were slow to implement combined arms methods in the early phases of the Meuse-Argonne offensive, and this failure led to profound organizational and tactical change before the final phase.

As the campaign progressed, V Corps learned to embrace the challenges inherent in this no man's land, resulting in dramatic organizational change that brought about necessary adaptation required for battlefield success. V Corps recognized that in-stride adaptation required an internal cultural shift that enabled leaders to balance integration of new technologies with deviations in doctrinal employment. Specifically, before the third phase of the campaign, V Corps made significant changes to its leaders, planning methods, tactics, and organizational structure to address the reality of the emerging changes on the modern battlefield. This study explains how, despite the problems of doctrinal limitations, unsynchronized use of new technology, poorly trained divisions, and newly created corps headquarters, V Corps and its divisions successfully adapted in-stride during large-scale combat operations in the Meuse-Argonne campaign.

Over the Top: Rushing to Failure in the First Phase of the Meuse-Argonne

Despite the extensive planning that consumed the newly developed headquarters before 26 September 1918, V Corps remained unprepared for the combined arms challenges that awaited them at the outset of the Meuse-Argonne campaign. Namely, the V Corps maneuver plan failed to synchronize divisional infantry maneuver with artillery, aviation, and tank employment. As a result, over the next five days, the divisions of V Corps struggled to achieve the First Army mandated objective of Montfaucon. This failure cost V Corps time and resources as they struggled to move supplies and artillery pieces over rough terrain while maneuvering poorly trained formations.

With mostly untrained and inexperienced units, V Corps positioned the 79th Division on the right flank, the 37th Division in the center, the 91st Division on the left flank (Figure 1). Keeping its only combat-tested unit, the 32nd Division, in reserve, V Corps planned to attack the 117th German Reserve Division and the 1st and 2nd Foot Guard Regiments of the 1st Guard Division located along the Voker Stellung.1 V Corps expected the Germans to initially defend from trenches and subsequently retreat in the face of a large-scale assault, resulting in a more desirable war of maneuver that fit existing American doctrinal constructs.

Despite optimistic plans during the first three days of fighting, the 79th Division, 37th Division, and 91st Division were unsuccessful and the cost to manpower was staggering.2 In addition to navigating rough terrain, German forces changed their tactics by concentrating artillery fire with enfilade machine-gun fire from strong points on advancing American units.3 The enemy situation differed from planned enemy reactions as German forces chose to defend from strong points instead of along trench lines. American commanders found themselves fighting both trench warfare and a war of maneuver. The doctrine of maneuver warfare was incompatible with the enemy situation, yet V Corps continued to issue orders based on existing doctrine that called for spirited infantry assaults and limited artillery preparation of objectives.4

A reason for this over-reliance on existing doctrine stems from a lack of experience and training for commanders and staffs within V Corps. Leaders approached planning one-dimensionally by focusing primarily on infantry divisions rather than combining and synchronizing artillery, tanks, aviation and machine-gun employment.5 As a result, V Corps and its divisions did not understand and fully employ the combined arms capabilities of its formations and equipment. This knowledge gap hindered V Corps's inability to balance the tempo of infantry assaults with the employment of new pieces of technology.6 As it stood, V Corps's infantry-centric focus created a crisis.


Tempo: The Disconnect between Artillery and Infantry

Today, Army doctrine defines tempo as "the relative speed and rhythm of military operations over time with respect to the enemy."7 For V Corps in the first phase of the Meuse-Argonne, infantry units defined speed and rhythm rather than the combined effects of moving enablers simultaneously with infantry divisions, and V Corps's staff failed to anticipate the speed at which combined arms enablers could move to support assaults.8 This thinking resulted in plans that called for infantry maneuvers to penetrate 10–50 kilometers deep within enemy lines, often without sustained artillery support.9 This organizational rigidity resulted in orders that directed subordinates to seize unsupportable objectives.10

V Corps continued to struggle with tempo as its logistics plan for both infantry and artillery did not account for passable routes across no man's land. The ravaged terrain made even simple foot navigation difficult. Compounding this problem was the increased flow of supply convoys and casualty trains back toward the headquarters at Avocourt. Congestion in the corps support area became so bad during the first day that "staff officers on duty at [V] Corps Headquarters [were used] to keep traffic moving."11

Staff officers became preoccupied with managing the corps support area and were unable to adequately provide support for divisions engaged in combat.

The disruption to V Corps's tempo continued because of their failure to properly manage the Corps support area as the only three viable routes through the 38-kilometer area in no man's land became increasingly congested. To make matters worse, the heavy rain right after the start of the campaign all but rendered crossing that vital area with artillery, supply wagons, and trucks all but impossible.12 The compounding result was a failure to resource artillery for the 79th Division on the second day of the Meuse-Argonne as they assaulted Montfaucon.13 Without synchronization, artillery could not move closer to the front to support the infantry, and logistical support could not be timed to alleviate congestion along critical routes.

Analysis: Obstacles to Combined Arms

The challenge posed by the adaption of the Germans notwithstanding, V Corps faced internal obstacles to innovation within their organization. For the first phase of the Meuse-Argonne, leaders and staffs within V Corps primarily relied on the existing doctrine to implement Corps systems for planning. Rushed staff training and a desire to quickly launch the Meuse-Argonne offensive hindered V Corps's ability to develop the necessary organizational understanding required to accurately plan and execute operational tempo. As a new headquarters with roughly only a month working together prior to the offensive, V Corps struggled to understand itself, let alone encourage lower echelons to be innovative. In essence, V Corps lacked leaders capable of bridging new ideas to improve operations through combined maneuver.

As the first phase of the Meuse-Argonne concluded, intense internal and external pressures mounted on V Corps. Doctrine no longer matched the reality on the ground, and all three of the initial assault divisions culminated before reaching their final objectives.14 For change to occur, V Corps needed to address significant internal issues before it could effectively respond to its operational environment. How V Corps decided to deal with this pressure and friction would determine their ability to adapt in-stride during combat operations toward combined arms maneuver.15

Crossing No Man's Land: Innovation that Led to Combined Arms Maneuver Adaptation

By the fifth day of the Meuse-Argonne campaign, V Corps faced a crisis. After a three-day operational pause, by 4 October 1918, V Corps remained unable to seize the First Army mandated objectives directed for 27 September 1918. Desperate to regain momentum, V Corps replaced the 37th, 79th and 91st Divisions with the 32nd and 3rd Divisions.16 Without changing their planning methods, V Corps leadership continued to follow existing doctrine and inserted fresh infantry divisions into the fight.

V Corps leadership still expected infantry-centric plans to lead to success. However, the 32nd and 3rd Divisions differed from their predecessors with regards to combined arms employment, and in doing so, set the precedent for change within V Corps's planning and operations. Despite some early failures, as the second phase progressed, the 32nd and 3rd Divisions avoided costly frontal assaults by employing artillery for suppression as they maneuvered with infantry, tanks and machine guns to envelop German strong point positions.17

Combined Arms Innovation within the 32nd Division

As they reassessed the enemy situation, V Corps staff headquarters expected the Germans to defend their positions along the Kriemhilde Stellung.18 To penetrate this defensive belt, V Corps directed that its divisions seize the objectives of Romagne-sous-Montfaucon and the surrounding heights of Bois de Cunel to its east. (See figure 2).19 While the objectives assigned to the divisions were involved a more feasible distance, V Corps repeated past mistakes.

The V Corps artillery plan did not include supporting fires past the initial bombardment.20 This lack of fire support planning became the starting point for innovation within both the 3rd Divisions and the 32nd Division. The process involved trial and error, and the divisions saw mixed results.

After relieving the 91st Division, the 32nd Division began the second phase of the Meuse-Argonne campaign on 4 October with an assault on Gesnes, to the northeast of Cierges. Through the use of reconnaissance patrols, the 32nd Division established a greater understanding the battlefield. Based on the intelligence collected by their brigades, the 32nd Division's 64th Brigade utilized divisional artillery to destroy obstacles for an infantry advance while also simultaneously suppressing and neutralizing German machine gun positions. As a result, the 64th Brigade successfully captured Gesnes.21

Despite the success of these efforts, the lack of counterbattery fire hindered any further advance for the 32nd Division as a whole. Namely, to exploit success, the 32nd Division decided to continue with an attack on Bois de la Morine. Unfortunately, the 32nd Division rushed its plan to attack and failed to replicate the formula for success at Gesnes. They "issued no formal field order but endorsed copies of the corps order to its brigades."22 With no artillery support or clear understanding of German positions, the 64th Brigade failed to seize Bois de la Morine, and withdrew. Learning from their mistake, the 32nd Division planned to better coordinate and concentrate artillery before the next infantry assault.23

Rather than repeat their mistake at Bois de la Morine, the commander of the 32nd Division, Maj. Gen. William Haan, directed the coordination of artillery support focus on a clear understanding of German positions. The plan of 4 October brought every division asset to bear on the Bois de la Morine in a synchronized manner. In conjunction with massed artillery for the suppression and neutralization of German positions, the 32nd Division cross-attached "gas and flame troops and tanks" to infantry units of the 64th Brigade.24 In doing so, Major General Haan and his staff deviated from existing doctrine. The innovative solution overwhelmed the Germans at Bois de la Morine and solved the problem of tempo that plagued the previous divisions of V Corps.

From Bois de la Morine to the Kriemhilde Stellung, the 32nd Division continued to innovative as they deviated from doctrine to synchronize enablers. Meanwhile, their higher headquarters, V Corps, remained largely ineffectual in supporting its divisions. V Corps had no plan other than directing its divisions to penetrate the Kriemhilde Stellung. As a result of this disconnect between V Corps and its lower echelons, divisions under V Corps continued to fight in small, independent actions rather than a synchronized corps attack.25


Major General Haan wanted to avoid frontal assaults in the main defensive belt around Romagne. The plan was to use artillery to suppress German forces while the 32nd Division's 126th Infantry Regiment penetrated the defense south of Rogmane. Again, cross-attached tanks and infantry, in coordination with artillery, broke through the German lines, and the rest of the 32nd Division's infantry brigades poured through the penetration point.26

As the fight progressed, the Germans realized they were outflanked and began taking up positions along the surrounding hills. In spite of this, the 32nd Division continued to employ their new, innovative tactics. From 10–11 October, the fighting remained difficult, but the ad-hoc application of combined arms maneuver enabled the 32nd Division to seize opportunities that forced the Germans to continually reposition forces.27

On 13 October, V Corps began to change their approach to planning and synchronization. Extensive coordination occurred between V Corps and the 32nd Division to plan the suppression of defenses on La Cote Dame Marie and other hills surrounding Romagne. During this time, Maj. Gen. Charles P. Summerall replaced Major General Cameron as the V Corps commander, and changes to V Corps's planning accompanied his arrival.28 Major General Summerall ordered his staff to synchronize V Corps artillery with divisional artillery to support combined arms assaults on Hill 258 and other hills that flanked La Cote Dame Maire. The result was a decisive penetration of the Kriemhilde Stellung and envelopment of Romagne by the 32nd Division, forcing the German forces to withdraw under pressure.

Combined Arms Innovation within the 3rd Division

Simultaneously, the 3rd Division's learning process mirrored the learning process of the 32nd Division. Despite starting the second phase of the Meuse-Argonne with a rolling barrage for their initial attack, 3rd Division launched their assault brigade, the 5th Infantry Brigade, without any significant artillery preparation. The lack of artillery coordination allowed the Germans to defend machine gun positions and mass their artillery and aviation assets against elements of the 5th Brigade. Instead of continuing the attack, the commander of the 5th Brigade halted his formation and sent a request to the 3rd Division Headquarters for concentrated artillery fire on the machine gun positions located to the south of the woods near Hill 250.29 Deviating from doctrine, the commander sought to mass artillery on an objective before committing his infantry. The 5th Brigade commander's decisions enabled success as the concentrated artillery fire suppressed and dislodged the Germans.

The innovation at the brigade level helped the 3rd Division learn to fight as a combined arms team. In another assault in Woods 250, the 4th Infantry Brigade took a tactical pause, consolidated personnel and requested a 15-minute artillery barrage on the German machine gun positions in Woods 250. This barrage aimed to suppress enemy positions so the 4th Brigade could advance. The effect of this decision allowed the 3rd Division to gain ground and preserve combat power.30

Over the next four days, the 3rd Infantry Division utilized reconnaissance from aviation and infantry brigades to develop the situation. Once they identified enemy strongpoints, they massed their efforts against those points. Their actions demonstrate a dramatic shift from the overreliance on corps assets to requesting corps assets only when the division exhausted its own assets. This process incorporated combined arms methods as the standard operating procedure, and the 3rd Division's systematic clearance of objectives with synchronized and concentrated firepower supporting well-timed infantry assaults drove the Germans back.31

Analysis: Linking Divisional Combined Arms Maneuver to V Corps Operations

In his review of the 32nd Division, Paul Jacobsmeyer asserted that during this period, Major General Haan communicated a desire to plan combat operations outside of existing doctrinal approaches to his staff.32

Haan's challenge to his staff enabled them to understand the operational environment better. As a result, the 32nd Division focused reconnaissance and intelligence efforts that resulted in better-coordinated artillery bombardments with infantry attacks. To complement these efforts, 3rd Division, under the command of Maj. Gen. Beaumont B. Buck, also came to similar conclusions and changed tactics, employing concentrated and synchronized artillery to support a combined assault of infantry, tanks, flamethrowers, and machine guns.33

Capitalizing on the innovations of 32nd Division and 3rd Division, Major General Summerall recognized that V Corps's divisions needed support from their higher command to implement changes. Fortunately, the new First Army commander, Lt. Gen. Hunter Liggett, supported Summerall's changes. Like Summerall, Liggett aimed to synchronize planning between echelons.34

During this time, Liggett ordered an operational pause to retrain First Army in an effort to improve synchronization across all echelons. Summerall utilized this time to incorporate a counterbattery system to better prioritize and synchronize corps-level fires. While the previous leadership of V Corps focused primarily on infantry, Summerall concentrated more on artillery employment and its synchronization across V Corps.35 Divisions would now mass their artillery at more localized objectives, providing faster and more concentrated effects to the infantry. Summerall ensured V Corps artillery supplemented these effects when requested. Corps counterbattery freed divisional artillery to better support maneuvering infantry. While the plans to move guns quickly into support positions were not perfect, better planning between echelons made it possible to sustain success in the final phase of the Meuse-Argonne.36

It was through innovative commanders like Major Generals Buck and Haan who adapted doctrine by tailoring their forces and assets to achieve success on the battlefield. In truth, their examples blended both Pershing's and Allied artillery concepts into a hybrid concept that Paul Jacobsmeyer aptly called "semi-open" warfare.37 This blending of US and Allied ideas on warfare did not precisely fulfill General John Pershing's wish of open warfare, but in the end, V Corps began to adapt by embracing combined arms maneuver in a unique way that captured the American offensive spirit.38

Seizing the Objective: Adaptation in the Third Phase of the Meuse-Argonne

Even though V Corps replaced the 3rd and 32nd Division with the 2nd and 89th Divisions for the last major offensive, the adaptations made during the second phase were not lost with the addition of these new units.39 While retraining and organizational restructuring occurred, lower echelons at the regiment and brigade level actively maintained contact with German forces through multiple patrols. These measures allowed units within the new divisions of V Corps to build a common operating picture across echelons.40 The official account of V Corps cites the actions of the 89th Division on 21 October as vital to the planning of the final phase because their efforts captured a German map that "point[ed] out the main topographical features upon which the [German] defense of the line was based."41 Planning efforts began shifting from top-down objectives to a mix of focused bottom-up intelligence collected by divisions with Corps reconnaissance.

While bottom-up intelligence became integral to division and corps planning, it still had its limits. In order to confirm reports as well as fill in remaining gaps, V Corp further adapted its intelligence collection with innovations in their Corps Air Service.42 The collection efforts resulted in critical information where future planning efforts could concentrate. The official V Corps history accounts for continued adaption, stating that the aerial reconnaissance provided "much valuable information was derivedas to . . . which enemy occupied his sector and . . . his routes of circulation. From them . . . the Artillery Information Service discovered many [enemy] battery positions."43 V Corps leveraged new technology to aid in focused planning efforts to empower maneuver divisions.


The other remarkable outcome of this innovative process was the development of the combined Infantry Assault and Artillery Objective Map.44 This document demonstrates how adaptation became part of the operational system. Decentralized information gathering efforts at lower levels helped higher echelons identify gaps in plans, ultimately helping them focusing their planning efforts as they sought to reduce unknowns.

Through the Objective Map, V Corps addressed the lingering tempo problem that plagued them from the beginning. Whereas original objectives during the first two phases did not acknowledge a realistic understanding of tempo, objectives during the final phase were realistic, thoroughly researched, and properly planned. The most important part of this collaborative planning was that it allowed for synchronization through a shared common operating picture. The overall success of V Corps highlights the effects of this synchronization during the final phase of the Meuse-Argonne. The planning was so effective that the coordinated effort of artillery and infantry isolated German artillery units, preventing them from leaving their shelters to conduct counterbattery operations in support of their infantry in the defense.45

Unlike in the first two phases of the Meuse-Argonne, V Corps and divisional planning did not stop synchronization of artillery after the first planned assault.46 V Corps, with the help of its divisions, built artillery displacement tables for artillery at each echelon while accounting for the necessary sustainment requirements to ensure continuous artillery support to advanced infantry objectives. This planning table also incorporated the capabilities of new technology, such as the ranges of tanks, aircraft, and machine guns. Doing so combined every asset that V Corps could bring to bear in a synchronized manner.47

This planning effort resulted in combined arms synchronization across V Corps that isolated both German infantry and artillery positions by overwhelming and forcing them to withdraw from their positions along the Barricourt Crest. With an accurate common operating picture and shared understanding of equipment capability across the formation, V Corps and its subordinate echelons created flexible plans that allowed them to continue concentrated attacks against the defending Germans.48

In this case, less was more in that V Corps could concentrate operational resources to fill in gaps that tactical levels could not. The manner in which V Corps allocated resources created an agile and adaptive organization that embraced combined arms maneuver. It also removed the unnecessary burden from the corps staff in planning every detail in a vacuum. This system grew to accept input from lower echelons, allowing V Corps to leverage assets toward remaining gaps. At the same time, staff officers worked diligently to produce documents that were simple, effective and could be used by multiple echelons to coordinate efforts. Doing so finally combined the capabilities of new technologies with the American offensive spirit, creating a lethal combined arms approach toward combat that turned the tide of the Meuse-Argonne and gave the Allies the breakthrough they needed.

Conclusions and Recommendations

Despite the passing of 100 years, corps and division missions remain focused on creating opportunities that enable continuous positions of relative advantage.49 As with the corps and divisions of 1918, the impact of new technology today can create opportunities for positions of relative advantage if implemented correctly. However, balancing new technology with existing doctrine can challenge even the best units today in terms of finding the right tempo with which to conduct large-scale combat operations (LSCO). As the Meuse-Argonne case study indicates, operational tempo is vital to success in large-scale combat operations and maintaining it requires corps and division staffs to consider the dynamic impact of technological integration and the application of doctrine on synchronization across echelons.

A fundamental assumption concerning this analysis centers on corps as a tactical headquarters maneuvering divisions throughout the course of LSCO. As the Meuse-Argonne case study demonstrates, V Corps struggled in this regard by neglecting the necessary tactical synchronization needed to successfully maneuver its divisions. As a new headquarters, V Corps relied on existing doctrine to create a fighting force that centered on a top-down approach toward artillery employment. This top-down approach also did not account for the simultaneous requirement of sustainment of other combined arms assets, preventing units across V Corps from maintaining tempo. Field Manual (FM) 3-0, Operations, states that "commanders conduct decisive action to seize, retain and exploit the initiative. This involves the orchestration of many simultaneous unit actions in the most demanding of operational environments."50 Unfortunately for V Corps in the early stages of the Meuse-Argonne, the "orchestration of many simultaneous unit actions" overwhelmed the capabilities of the staff and directly impacted their ability to ensure tempo across the entire corps. This is evidenced by their lack of planning for the V Corps support area. As a tactical organization, V Corps could have benefited from a more detailed plan for their support area to ensure that logistics and casualties did not clog routes needed by supporting artillery units. As the case study shows, a failure to properly plan and synchronize efforts within the support area directly impacts the tempo of operations within the close area.

Maintaining tempo throughout combat operations also requires an iterative dialogue between staffs and commanders to anticipate changes. The 3rd Division and the 32nd Division used this iterative dialogue to creatively adjust to battlefield conditions. While altering how they employed artillery fires, they also changed the organizational structure of their infantry regiments to include tanks, machine guns and flamethrowers. In this instance, Major General Haan and Major General Buck created dialogue with Major General Summerall and his staff that linked innovation at the divisional level to an adaptation of the V Corps operational process.

In this regard, V Corps's change allowed them to choose the most vital points in the battle to assist subordinates in achieving their objectives while also allowing for subordinate freedom of action at the tactical level. In doing so, they struck the right balance of decentralized control while also ensuring more synchronized efforts across V Corps. This concept may seem paradoxical, but it is in this delicate balancing act of two seemingly opposing ideas that the leaders of V Corps achieved success.

Another important factor that impacts the challenge of balance is implementation of new technology. While there were other factors, like training and experience, which negatively impacted organizational cohesion within V Corps, it is important to note that the organizational structure built on older models of warfare confused leaders and staffs. In effect, the rigidity within the organization prevented leaders from focusing on their environment because older doctrinal methods did not account for the complex endeavor of merging new technology with a new organization.

Today, political factors and other operational environment conditions present similar challenges to Army combat unit structures that form new relationships through the creation of task forces that are "scalable and tailorable" depending on the mission.51 To create organizations capable of adapting during large-scale combat operations, leaders and staffs should give serious thought to developing methods of studying, synchronizing, and employing new technology to ensure operational tempo. Central to this is a recognition that the shifting of task organizations often requires a shift in technological capability. Doing so helps staffs and commanders gain a clearer picture of the capabilities of their new subordinate units and the overall change that their addition brings to the overall organization.

Finally, balancing organizational and technological requirements requires an honest look on the applicability of doctrine. As the case study of the Meuse-Argonne demonstrates, doctrinal methods succeed when they are malleable enough for the user to creatively apply as responses from the operational environment dictate. In the latter part of the second phase and into the final phase, V Corps did not completely throw out existing doctrine. Instead, officers linked existing doctrine with new techniques and technology by changing the sequence, timing, and process of synchronization of artillery and other combined arms assets to better suit infantry support. Rather than mass fires effects before assaults or on poorly conceived objectives, they allowed lower echelons to build an intelligence picture that allowed them to mass all effects of their formations on decisive points.

This nuanced change to existing doctrine produced striking results that gave birth to modern combined arms. Infantry assaults remained vital, as General Pershing wanted, but their timing and sequence changed to dramatic and successful effect. In essence, these officers shifted the paradigm with a nuanced change to doctrine by changing how they conceptualized the battlefield. In short, doctrine should not be discounted, but similarly, it should not be followed rigidly. If it is, military planners run the same risk as their predecessors in the first phase of the Meuse-Argonne who remained whetted to the checklists and dogma that prevented unit success.

In conclusion, as the Army looks toward possible future wars that may return to LSCO, communication and synchronization are just as important today as they were in 1918. Corps and division leaders and staffs should remain vigilant in their efforts to create opportunities so seize positions of relative advantage by carefully analyzing all the factors that impact operational tempo. Ensuring the right tempo throughout large-scale combat operations requires an in-depth analysis of the dynamic interactions between technology and doctrine. If not properly planned, unsynchronized tempo becomes a no man's land that can prevent even the best units from succeeding. Avoiding unsynchronized operations depends on the willingness of leaders and staffs to creatively and honestly approach problems. Doing so may make us more adaptable while operating in complex environments, and it may help prevent relearning the hard lessons of the Meuse-Argonne at the corps and division level.



  1. Don Branson, "A Critical Analysis of the Operation of the Fifth Corps in the First Phase of the Meuse-Argonne" (individual research paper, Command and General Staff College, 1933), 6.
  2. Samuel Harrison, "The Operations of the US Fifth Corps in the First Phase of the Meuse-Argonne Offensive" (individual research paper, The Command and General Staff School, 1931), 11–12.
  3. American Battlefield Monuments Commission, 91st Division Summary of Operations in the World War (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1944), 18–19.
  4. Department of the Army, Field Service Regulations, US Army, 1914 (Washington, DC: 1914), 82–96. See also Michael Bonura, Under the Shadow of Napoleon: French Influence on the American Way of Warfare from the War of 1812 to the Outbreak of WWII (New York: New York University Press), 202–12.
  5. John Pershing, My Experiences in the World War (New York: F.A. Stokes, 1931), 150–56.
  6. Don Branson, "A Critical Analysis," 8. See also, American Battlefield Monuments Commission, 37th Division Summary of Operations in the World War (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1944), 1.
  7. Department of the Army, Army Doctrinal Reference Publication (ADRP) 3-0, Operations (Washington, DC: 2016), 2-7.
  8. Mark Grotelueschen, Doctrine Under Trial: American Artillery Employment in World War I (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2001), 115–16.
  9. J. W. Vilner, "History of the Fifth American Army Corps," in Narrative of the 5th Corps from November 1st 1918 (Browns Summit, NC: Etherington Conservation Services, 2007), 2–5.
  10. Paul Strong and Sanders Marble, Artillery in the Great War (Barnsley, South Yorkshire: Pen and Sword Books, Ltd., 2011), 194–195.
  11. Branson, "Critical Analysis," 14. See also, William Haan, Tactical Note No. 7, 32nd Division Headquarters to the 63rd and 64th Infantry Brigades, 24 September 1918.
  12. George C. Marshall, Memoirs of My Services in the World War, 1917–1918 (Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1976), 160–64.
  13. Branson, "Critical Analysis," 9.
  14. Marshall, Memoirs, 167.
  15. Carl von Clausewitz, On War, trans. and ed. Michael Howard and Peter Paret (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1984), 119.
  16. US Army Center of Military History, American Armies and Battlefields in Europe (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1992), 177.
  17. Paul Jacobsmeyer. "On the Edge of a Breakthrough: Semi-Open Warfare in the American Expeditionary Force—the Experience of the 32nd Division (Michigan-Wisconsin National Guard)" (paper presented to Society for Military History 75th Annual Meeting and Conference, 2008), 18.
  18. US Army Center of Military History, American Armies, 177–79.
  19. American Battlefield Monuments Commission, 3rd Division Summary of Operations in the World War (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1944), 61.
  20. Monuments Commission, 3rd Division, 61. V Corps artillery plans remained unsynchronized with divisional artillery for the initial part of the second phase.
  21. Wisconsin War History Commission, The 32nd Division in the World War, 1917–1919 (Madison, WI: Joint War History Commissions of Michigan and Wisconsin, 1920), 98.
  22. American Battlefield Monuments Commission, 32nd Division Summary of Operations in the World War (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1944), 38–41.
  23. Wisconsin War History, The 32nd Division, 100.
  24. Wisconsin War History, 100.
  25. Charles P. Summerall, The Way of Duty, Honor, Country: The Memoir of General Charles Pelot Summerall (Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 2010), 141–42. Constant boundary shifts and the incorporation of the 42nd Division into the fight complicated V Corps's situational understanding.
  26. Wisconsin War History, The 32nd Division, 100.
  27. The 32nd Division, 102–05.
  28. Summerall, Duty, Honor, Country, 142–48.
  29. Unit history, History of the Third Division, 16.
  30. History of the Third Division, 18.
  31. History of the Third Division, 19–21.
  32. Jacobsmeyer, "Edge of a Breakthrough," 19–22.
  33. Unit history, History of the Third Division, 21–27.
  34. Michael Bigelow, "Lt. General Hunter Liggett: Command in the AEF," The Story of the American Expeditionary Forces, accessed 2 November 2017,
  35. Summerall, Duty, Honor, Country, 150–51.
  36. J. B. A. Bailey, Field Artillery and Firepower (Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 2004), 265–70.
  37. Jacobsmeyer. "Edge of a Breakthrough," 16.
  38. Thomas S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago Press, 1962), 5–7.
  39. Summerall, Duty, Honor, Country, 150–54.
  40. Bigelow, "Command in the AEF," accessed 2 November 2017,
  41. Vilner, "History of the Fifth American Army Corps," 7.
  42. Vilner, 7. The coordination and employment of aircraft enabled V Corps to gain valuable information on enemy positions in-depth to support ground assaults and counterbattery targets. This focus indicates that the V Corps's culture continued to adapt to the capabilities of its formations.
  43. Vilner, "History of the Fifth American Army Corps," 8.
  44. Vilner, 8. The active reconnaissance patrols of divisions, coupled with changes in air corps utilization gave V Corps a rough estimate of enemy positions and strength from which they could tailor the use of their assets to confirm or deny information gaps.
  45. Vilner, 8.
  46. Bailey, Field Artillery and Firepower, 265–70.
  47. Vilner, "History of the Fifth American Army Corps," 8.
  48. Bailey, Field Artillery and Firepower, 268. See also Grotelueschen, Doctrine Under Trial, 116–121.
  49. Department of the Army, Field Manual (FM) 3-0, Operations (Washington, DC: 2017), 1–19.
  50. FM 3-0, 5-3.
  51. Department of the Army, Army Doctrinal Publication (ADP) 1-0, The Army (Washington, DC: 2012), 4-3.