Naval History and Heritage Command

National Museum of the U.S. Navy

Invasion of Normandy, France

(Codename: Operation Overlord)

On June 6, 1944, in Operation Overlord, the Allied forces landed troops on Normandy beaches for the largest amphibious assault in history, beginning the march eastward to defeat Germany.  In a larger strategic sense, the successful Allied landing in France was a psychological blow to the German occupation of Europe.   It called into question the German Army's ability to control western Europe, dramatically increase partisan activity against enemy occupation, and hearten the spirits of those fighting against Nazi tyranny.  The balance of power on the continent, already weakened by Soviet offensives into Poland was decisively tipped into Allied favor.  From that point on, the Allies would begin to drive into Germany that ultimately destroyed the Nazi regime on May 7, 1945.  

To read more about Operation Overlord from the NHHC Navy Library, please click here.  

To view Navy Art from the Navy Art Gallery on Operation Overlord, please click here.  

Image:  80-G-59422:  Normandy Invasion, June 1944.  Army troops onboard an LCT, ready to ride across the English Channel to France.  Some of these men wear 101st Airborne Division insignia.   Photograph released June 12, 1944.   Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.