Sign on the road leading up to Hill 314, Petite Chapelle is the small chapel near the 30th ID Memorial.
Photo of Hill 314 from the South-West, the building on the hill is the Petite Chapelle.
Some information on a sign on Hill 314.
The memorial on the top of Hill 314.
A hole on Hill 314 which pretty much looks like a square foxhole, on this side of the hill there were many crater-like holes as well. This is in Co. G's area.
Positions of E Company on the South-East of the hill.
View at Mortain taken from the Northwest side of Hill 314. The houses on the left are Mortain, and left is Abbaye Blanche. The hill in the background is Hill 285.
One of the main reasons for taking Hill 314 was of course the sight. Here a photo to give you an idea how far you can look. The hill like object on the photo is Mont St. Michel, a chapel build on a hill more than 40 km to the west! The hill maybe not very high, but the sight is incredible.
This photo is taken south of Mortain near the site of the 120th's Co. F roadblock. Read about this position told by George E. Neidhardt of Co. F...CLICK to READ
Using a map drawn by Jay Karamales match the numbered arrows with the corresponding numbered photos below. Present photos taken by Tim Ypelaar of Kerkrade, Holland.
No. 1 The abbey itself.
No. 2 Bridge on road to Mortain: This bridge was a roadblock, mined on the other side, and covered by a .30 cal Machine Gun and a 57mm AT gun. If you follow the road over the bridge you'll get into the center of Mortain.
Probable position of the .30 and 57mm AT gun.
Road leading to St. Barthelmy north and Mortain South: the AT gun could have been on this road as well. The road leads to the next couple of photo's, on the other side is the bridge on the photo of the bridge leading to Mortain. ( No. 2 )
No. 3 Small square besides the road leading to St. Barthelmy (2006): This is sort of a small square (it is actually a triangle), along the road leading to the bridge at arrow 4 and going to St. Barthelmy. It has been made like the next photo has been made in 1944. The TD CP can be seen in the distance.
Small square besides the road leading to St. Barthelmy (1944): Same photo angle as above.
Small square besides road leading to Mortain (2006): Same square only from the other side, this road leads to the roadblock at arrow 1.
Small square besides road leading to Mortain (1944): Same photo angle as above.
TD CP: Tank Destroyer CP, not sure if this was the house standing in 1944, this could be a new house. But the CP stood on this spot. Please note TD CP is marked on map between Nos. 3 & 4.
No. 4 Bridge on road to St. Barthelmy: Bridge leading to St. Barthelmy, was covered by a .50 cal machine gun. Off course all roadblocks were also defended by infantry and bazooka teams.
No. 5 Roadblock position on road to St. Barthelmy: iIt was also covered by a .50 machine gun. The road leading to the left was mined, and the one to the right blocked by a barricade.
No. 6 Positions 3" guns: This was probably the position of the 2 3"guns covering the road to St. Barthelmy. They would have been pointed at the camera, the road leads in to the village of Abbaye Blanche.
No. 7 Roadblock position on small bridge to the abbey: There were mines laid in front of this bridge, and defended by a BAR position as well. It leads to the abbey.
BAR position on other side of the bridge: Here the BAR positions must have been, there are actually 2 bridges I guess the BAR position would have been after the first bridge.
No. 8 Position 3" towed TD gun: Probable position of the 3" gun covering the road to the railroad station.
Position .30 MG: Probable position of the .30 cal machine gun covering the road to the railroad station.
No. 9 Mortain sign: The road leading into Mortain.
Another series of Now and Then Mortain photos from John Croxton, Mortain
Click here to open the Microsoft Word document
John also owns a Bed and Breakfast in Mortain for those who wish to visit Mortain: