Roer River Crossing

"Battlefield Art" by Lt. Ben D. "Stookie" Allen


    The following images are images that were drawn by Lt. Stookie Allen, believed to have been with Co. A., 237th, 1106th Engineer Combat Group.

    We were given kind permission to display the images below by a gentleman from upstate New York, a Mr. Frank Ledda (no relation).

    The images sent to us by Mr. Ledda are identified as Images #1 and #2 below.

    The history behind this quite interesting artwork is as follows: Mr. Ledda was working with his sister in renovating an older house purchased by her in upstate New York. When he ripped out an old wall, he located an old cardboard mailing tube buried inside the wall. The tube contained the following images.

    Can anyone tell us more about the drawings? Who was Lt. Stookie Allen and whatever happened to him.



    Here are some of Lt. Ben D. "Stookie" Allen's drawings.


image of roer crossing artwork

[Click on the image for larger view]


Image #1: Roer River Crossing

Contributed by Mr. Frank Ledda


    This image depicts two scenes.

    One scene is of the construction of a Bailey bridge across the Roer River. In this scene you can see the construction in progress and a notation as to which unit was doing the construction -- Co. A., 237th, 1106th Engineer Combat Group. An additional note says: "The longest fixed Bailey in the ETO. Roer River Crossing 250 feet long." There appears to be a P-38 flying above the bridge.

    In the second image, a lot of action appears to be taking place including a few Shermans firing across the river. A group of mine clearing units are in the process of clearing mines...under enemy fire [one group is hit by the fire]. An officer appears to be carrying something on his shoulder [officer? has a side arm]. Center point is a group of four medics transporting a casuality from river. In the background can be seen a pontoon brige across the river with assulting troops crossing under fire. A notation states:" And Here's to the Lads Who Took Out the Mines on the Approaches to the Roer."

    The images shown here are reduced versions of the original images received and are cleaned up a bit for better detail. The larger images are as received and NOT cleaned up in any way.

    They appear old, yellowed and aged.

    The art work (both images) are signed by Lt. Stookie Allen.


image of battlefield map

[Click on the image for larger view]


Image #2: VII Corps Map

Contributed by Mr. Frank Ledda


    This battlefield map [VII Corps] shows troop movements in France, the Battle of the Ardennes and the Roer/Rhine sectors. Notations in the lower right portion of the map include the following:

    VII Corps map -- J. Lawton Collins, Lt. Gen. U. S. Army, Commanding

    Scale: 1/200,000

    Passed by base censor

    Compilation and layout by the Engineer Section Hqd, VII Corps

    Drafted and Reproduced by the 663rd Engr Topc Co.


    An interesting web site that was located has photographs taken during the action in and around the Roer. One image is of interest. The image is one taken from a similar angle as the one taken of the construction of the Bailey bridge across the Roer River. The photograph is of the completed Bailey bridge.

Image of the completed Bailey Bridge over the Roer River


image of american flag

Battlefield Art
by Lt. Ben D. Stookie Allen

We at World War II Stories -- In Their Own Words have recently added a few additional prints by Lt. Stookie Allen. These prints were contributed by various wonderful folks from around the country and all depict various aspects of the men of the 1106th Engineer Combat Group.

If you would care to view these prints and the accompanying information please click on the following new link!

image of NEWBattlefield Artwork by Lt. Ben D. "Stookie" Allen


Below are links to some of the stories of some of the men who were involved in the Roer River Crossing:

Co. F., 405th Regiment -- Kitchen History Stories:

Gene Greenburg, Sgt., Co. F., 405th Reg. -- Gene's World War II Diary

Jim Hansen, Sgt., 2nd Lt., Co. F., 405th Reg. -- Jim Hansen Remembers

Bob Herrick, 2nd Lt., Co. F., 405th Reg. -- From the Roer to the Rhine

Edward L. Souder, Pfc., Co. F., 405th Reg. -- Going Off to War

All of the stories of the men of Co. F., 405th Reg. to date...


Interested in some background information?
Check out the related links below...

Rhineland Reoccupied - 1945

From the Roer River to the Rhine River

Rare World War II Prints

War Prints

Crossing the Roer River

Establishing the Roer Bridgehead

Assault Crossing of the Roer

United States Army, 102nd Infantry Division

102 Infantry Division

History of the 102nd Infantry Division

Attack on Linnich, Flossdorf, Rurdorf - 29 Nov -- 4 Dec 1944

Gardelegen War Crime

image of NEWGardelegen: April 13, 1945:
Massacre at the Isenschnibbe Barn

American Battle Monuments Commission: WWII Honor Roll

National World War II Memorial


Information and photographs were generously provided to World War II Stories -- In Their Own Words by Mr. Frank Ledda of San Leandro, California. We cannot express enough "Thanks" to Mr. Ledda for his kind offer to share this rare find.

Original materials submitted on 31 January 2003.
Materials added to website on 11 February 2003.
Additional Materials added to website on 3 May 2003
Additional Materials added to website on 20 December 2003
Additional Materials added to website on 29 March 2004


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