The Conquering 9th

The Ninth U.S. Army in World War II

Nathan N. Prefer

A comprehensive history of the U.S. Ninth Army, from its formation and organization, through its constituent units and commanders to narrative of the key battles it took part in August 1944-May 1945.
Date Published :
March 2020
Publisher :
Illustration :
25 images and maps
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781612008288
Pages : 264
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
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A comprehensive history of the U.S. Ninth Army, from its formation and organization, through its constituent units and commanders to narrative of the key battles it took part in August 1944-May 1945.

The Ninth Army came into existence in May 1944, under the command of General William Hood Simpson, himself a rather unknown but highly successful ground commander. By late August, the Ninth Army was ready to join the crusade in Europe. Known by its radio call sign "Conquer," they landed at Utah Beach, France, on August 28 and 29. They were now at war and ready for their first assignment. It entered the fray in Brittany, taking over from the Third Army. The biggest port in Brittany was Brest, and operations to capture it began mid-August, with the Ninth Army completing what General Patton had begun by late September.

The Ninth Army then moved to the Siegfried Line alongside the First Army. After some inter-army political maneuvering, it was moved to the north flank of the American lines and was the only American army to fight under British Field Marshal Montgomery’s command for several months, until the Rhine River was crossed, playing a small supportive role in the Battle of the Bulge.

It went on to be involved in the reduction of the Wesel Pocket in cooperation with the British; the Rhine Crossing, including Operation Varsity, the airborne drop across the Rhine, the reduction of the Ruhr Pocket, and then the "Race to Berlin." The Ninth reached the Elbe River before it was stopped not by the enemy, but by high command. Following the end of hostilities the army was eventually dissolved, and the book covers the dissolution and the subsequent fate of some of its leaders.

This new history of the Ninth places the contribution of this unsung army into a full history of the war in Europe in 1944–45. It covers all levels of the army’s activities from the responsibilities and duties of the higher echelon, the commanders through to combat stories of the units under its command and Medal of Honor actions.

About The Author

Nathan N. Prefer is retired with graduate degrees in Military History. His life-long study of the Second World War has resulted in three prior military studies including MacArthur's New Guinea Campaign, March-August 1944; Patton’s Ghost Corps, Cracking the Siegfried Line and Vinegar Joe's War, Stilwell's Campaigns in Burma. He resides in Fort Myers, Florida.


1. A New Field Army
2. Brittany
3. October 1944
4. November 1944
5. Operation Clipper
6. Plans and Preparations
7. Operation Grenade
8. Race to the Rhine
9. The Wesel Pocket
10. Operation Flashpoint
11. Operation Varsity
12. Battle for the Ruhr
13. On to Berlin
14. To the End


"Dr. Prefer deserves credit for resurrecting the achievements of this successful army and its quiet commander."

- The Journal of America's Military Past

"...should appeal to those seeking a better understanding of a field army in combat operations."

- On Point: The Journal of Army History

‘’It is a scholarly and comprehensive account of the army until its deactivation in 1945. It is a fascinating narrative of how armies work. Overall, this is a highly readable book, is an important historical account of the Ninth Army and will give the wargamer many potential scenarios.  It is strongly recommended for the general reader and expert alike.’’

- Miniature Wargames

"...serves to bring attention to an army and its commander, who fought without the fanfare enjoyed by other U.S. Army units and generals in World War II. The book is a good starting point for anyone wanting to delve further into the history of Ninth Army."

- ARMY Magazine

"...a must have for all who would like to learn more about WW2 history. It is nice to see good balance between photos and text here. Such style should be interesting to read and would give you more knowledge about 9th US Army."

- DetailScaleReview

"…an absorbing story that will appeal to any WWII reader, particularly those with an interest in the US army in Europe from D-Day onwards."

- Wargames Illustrated

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