With Their Bare Hands: General Pershing, the 79th Division, and the battle for Montfaucon

After the American declaration of war on Germany in 1917, hundreds of thousands of U.S. troops were deployed to France–among them the recently drafted Seventy-Ninth Division. Thrown into the hellish stalemate of trench warfare, the (AEF) was blooded in battle by the time of the Meuse-Argonne offensive of 1918 where the Seventy-Ninth would fight its most famous engagement–the battle of Montfaucon.

Using stunning contemporary photographs and testimony from a wealth of primary sources from all sides of the conflict and all military ranks, With Their Bare Hands follows the Seventy-Ninth from its origins in 1917 through to the end of the war, with a focus on the bloody encounter at Montfaucon. Using the division as a window on the whole AEF, Gene Fax explores its achievements and failures, as well as shows how the lessons learned from this conflict ultimately affected American strategy in World War II.