After the liberation: Unpublished color photos of American troops posing happily with liberated Europeans... and defeated German enemies during World War II
- A series of never-before-published color images of jubilant locals in liberated Normandy after the D-Day landings has been released by LIFE.com
PUBLISHED: 08:39 EST, 23 June 2013 | UPDATED: 09:30 EST, 23 June 2013
The devastation wreaked on the beaches of Normandy in northwest France as the Allies unleashed their history-changing assault against the Germans in June 1994 has been well-documented.
But in color photos taken by LIFE.com’s Frank Scherschel, but not published at the time, countless other scenes 'of the beginning of the end of the war' were captured.
From the reception troops enjoyed on their way to Paris to the jubilant liberation of the capital from Nazi control, these recently-released photos bring into the focus the spirit of the historic invasion on the 69th anniversary of the landings.
American Army trucks parade down the Champs-Elysées the day after the liberation of Paris by French and Allied troops, August 1944
Life after the French capital was liberated in August 1944
Troops and civilians pass the time on Henley Bridge, Henley-on-Thames, in 1944
Photographer Scherschel (1907-1981) was an award-winning staff shooter for LIFE well into the 1950s.
On June 6, 1944, about 156,000 American, British and Canadian forces, led by General Dwight D. Eisenhower, landed on five beaches along a 50-mile stretch of the heavily fortified coast of France’s Normandy region.
By late August 1944, all of northern France had been liberated, and by the following spring the Allies had defeated the Germans.
The Normandy landings have been called the beginning of the end of war in Europe.
Veterans of the 1944 Normandy landings gathered earlier this month on June 6 at the site of history's largest amphibious invasion for a day of ceremonies marking D-Day's 69th anniversary.
Captured German troops: From D-Day until Christmas 1944, German prisoners of war were shipped off to American detention facilities at a rate of 30,000 per month
Allied troops uniting with locals in liberated French towns after D-Day
An American tank crew takes a breather on the way through the town of Avranches, Normandy, in the summer of 1944
OTHER IMAGES CAPTURED AT THE TIME OF THE HISTORIC INVASION
Operation Overlord Normandy: Four Allied soldiers are looking at a map with two French police officers in the center of a town in Normandy, June 1944
In England, American soldiers, having loaded their equipment and supplies onto a landing craft tank, await the signal to begin the D-Day invasion, June 1944
Two American members of the Women's Army Corps are looking at a map presented by a uniformed Frenchman in July 1944, after Cherbourg, France, was liberated by the U.S. Army
In the wake of World War II's D-Day invasion, French townspeople wave at arriving Allied forces, Normandy, France, 1944
Three girls are playing in the sand next to a war-damaged vehicle in Cherbourg, July 1944
French couple sharing cognac with American tank crew after Allied forces liberated the area
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2346829/After-liberation-UNPUBLISHED-color-photos-American-troops-posing-happily-liberated-Europeans-Allied-Forces-defeated-Nazis-World-War-II.html#ixzz2X8PlBumm