15 Images of Field Marshal Montgomery You May Not Have Seen Before

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Field Marshal Montgomery is one of the defining figures of British wartime. In terms of image and influence, he ranks alongside Winston Churchill. Churchill had his Homburg hat and cigar. Montgomery, or “Monty” as he was known, had his black beret with twin badges.

He didn’t smoke though. Montgomery has often been compared to Wellington, such was the respect for him.

General Admiral Hans-Georg von Friedeburg (1895 – 1945) and Field Marshal Sir Bernard Law Montgomery (1887 – 1976) at the British camp on Luneburg Heath to sign the Instrument of Surrender of the German armed forces in Holland, north-west Germany and Denmark at the end of World War II, 4th May 1945. (Photo by George Rodger/The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images)
General Admiral Hans-Georg von Friedeburg (1895 – 1945) and Field Marshal Sir Bernard Law Montgomery (1887 – 1976) at the British camp on Luneburg Heath to sign the Instrument of Surrender of the German armed forces in Holland, north-west Germany and Denmark at the end of World War II, 4th May 1945. (Photo by George Rodger/The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images)

Born Bernard Law Montgomery in 1887, he came from a large Irish family. He faced conflict from a young age.

During the Battle of Ypres in 1914 the young Monty was shot. The bullet went through his lung and nearly ended not only his military career but also his life. He was awarded the coveted Distinguished Service Order as a result.

When World War II broke out, Montgomery’s reputation became legendary. He led the elite 3rd Division out of Dunkirk in 1940.

(Original Caption) 9/20/43-Reggio, Italy: Their smiling leader, General Sir Bernard L. Montgomery, greets men of the British Eighth Army as they march, single file, through the narrow streets of Reggio in the early stages of the allied invasion of the Italian mainland. This an original of the radiophoto previously serviced.
(Original Caption) 9/20/43-Reggio, Italy: Their smiling leader, General Sir Bernard L. Montgomery, greets men of the British Eighth Army as they march, single file, through the narrow streets of Reggio in the early stages of the allied invasion of the Italian mainland. This an original of the radiophoto previously serviced.

But it was what happened 2 years later that really made his name. Heading the Eighth Army, he organized the victory at El Alamein in Egypt, fighting off Rommel’s troops. He also ensured victory during D-Day by insisting the number of Divisions were increased.

His responsibilities during the war saw him working closely alongside Dwight D. Eisenhower, future President of the United States.

General Eisenhower, Commander in chief of the Allied armies in North Africa , flew by plane to visit General Bernard Montgomery at his tactical headquarters to congratulate him on his recent successes with the 8th Army. April 1943 (Photo by Daily Mirror Archive / Crown/Mirrorpix/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)
General Eisenhower, Commander in chief of the Allied armies in North Africa , flew by plane to visit General Bernard Montgomery at his tactical headquarters to congratulate him on his recent successes with the 8th Army. April 1943 (Photo by Daily Mirror Archive / Crown/Mirrorpix/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)

The men didn’t always see eye to eye, putting it mildly. Monty’s outspoken attitude and lack of interest in things like smoking and drinking made him unpopular with his superiors. But soldiers reportedly loved him.

He had his failings, but only lost 1 fight in his career – Arnhem in 1944. Tragedy befell him when wife Betty died of a blood infection 10 years into their marriage.

Monty himself passed away in 1976 in Hampshire at the age of 88. A statue of Field Marshal Montgomery has stood for 40 years outside the Ministry of Defence in Whitehall, London, reminding everyone of his immense contribution to the British war effort…

circa 1942: General Montgomery (1887 – 1976) meets a camouflaged Home Guard on a tactical training course in South Eastern Command. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
circa 1942: General Montgomery (1887 – 1976) meets a camouflaged Home Guard on a tactical training course in South Eastern Command. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)

 

Field Marshal the Viscount Montgomery of Alamein KG, GCB, DSO photographed with Lady Churchill GBE at a luncheon organised by Foyles Bookshop at the Dorchester Hotel. 31st October 1958. (Photo by Smith/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)
Field Marshal the Viscount Montgomery of Alamein KG, GCB, DSO photographed with Lady Churchill GBE at a luncheon organised by Foyles Bookshop at the Dorchester Hotel. 31st October 1958. (Photo by Smith/Mirrorpix via Getty Images)

 

VATICAN – 1958: Pope Pius XII with Field Marshal Bernard Law Montgomery just before their private audience, 1958 in Vatican. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
VATICAN – 1958: Pope Pius XII with Field Marshal Bernard Law Montgomery just before their private audience, 1958 in Vatican. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

 

May 1945: Crowds turn out to welcome 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein (1887 – 1976), commander of the British Eighth Army in Africa, as his car passes through Stroget, a street in Copenhagen. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
May 1945: Crowds turn out to welcome 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein (1887 – 1976), commander of the British Eighth Army in Africa, as his car passes through Stroget, a street in Copenhagen. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

PARIS, FRANCE – AUGUST: British General Bernard Montgomery Being welcomed in Paris, France, in August 1944. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE – AUGUST: British General Bernard Montgomery Being welcomed in Paris, France, in August 1944. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

 

(Original Caption) “Monty” talks with front line sappers in Sicily… Sicily- Near the front line, General Bernard (Monty) Montgomery stops his car to chat with some of his men who were working on the road.
(Original Caption) “Monty” talks with front line sappers in Sicily… Sicily- Near the front line, General Bernard (Monty) Montgomery stops his car to chat with some of his men who were working on the road.

 

World War II. Invasion of Normandy (France). From left to right: Miles Dempsey (1896-1969), Bernard Montgomery (1887-1976) and Omar Nelson Bradley (1893-1981). In June 1944. (Photo by adoc-photos/Corbis via Getty Images)
World War II. Invasion of Normandy (France). From left to right: Miles Dempsey (1896-1969), Bernard Montgomery (1887-1976) and Omar Nelson Bradley (1893-1981). In June 1944. (Photo by adoc-photos/Corbis via Getty Images)

 

Le général Montgomery visitant une ville conquise en Allemagne en 1945. (Photo by Keystone-FranceGamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
Le général Montgomery visitant une ville conquise en Allemagne en 1945. (Photo by Keystone-FranceGamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

 

19th June 1967: Bernard Law Montgomery (1887 – 1976), commander in chief of the British army during World War II, wearing ceremonial garb at a Garter Ceremony in Windsor. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
19th June 1967: Bernard Law Montgomery (1887 – 1976), commander in chief of the British army during World War II, wearing ceremonial garb at a Garter Ceremony in Windsor. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)

 

Bernard Law Montgomery, 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein (1887 – 1976) (right) hands his new manuscript ‘History of Warfare’ to book publisher George Rainbird (1905 – 1986), 27th April 1967. (Photo by Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Bernard Law Montgomery, 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein (1887 – 1976) (right) hands his new manuscript ‘History of Warfare’ to book publisher George Rainbird (1905 – 1986), 27th April 1967. (Photo by Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

 

Field marshal and senior British Army officer Bernard Montgomery (1887 – 1976) arrives at the last parade of the 1st Batallion Royal Warwickshire Regiment, UK, 23rd April 1968. (Photo by Ron Moran/Daily Express/Getty Images)
Field marshal and senior British Army officer Bernard Montgomery (1887 – 1976) arrives at the last parade of the 1st Batallion Royal Warwickshire Regiment, UK, 23rd April 1968. (Photo by Ron Moran/Daily Express/Getty Images)

20 Images of Eisenhower You May Not Have Seen Before

Field-Marshall Viscount Montgomery (L) and Sir Rupert de la Bere, Lord Mayor of London (R), leaving Westminster Abbey after the full dress rehearsal for the Coronation Ceremony, 29th May 1953. Nicholas Wright, page to Viscount Montgomery, is seen in the middle. (Fox Photos/Getty Images)
Field-Marshall Viscount Montgomery (L) and Sir Rupert de la Bere, Lord Mayor of London (R), leaving Westminster Abbey after the full dress rehearsal for the Coronation Ceremony, 29th May 1953. Nicholas Wright, page to Viscount Montgomery, is seen in the middle. (Fox Photos/Getty Images)