Anthony McAuliffe

Anthony McAuliffe

Infobox Military Person
name=Anthony C. McAuliffe
born= birth date|1898|7|2
died= death date and age|1975|8|11|1898|7|2

caption=then-Brigadier General Anthony C. McAuliffe during World War II
placeofbirth= Washington, D.C.
placeofburial= Arlington National Cemetery
allegiance= United States of America
branch= United States Army
rank= General
commands=U.S. Army Europe Seventh Army
battles=World War II
awards= Distinguished Service Cross
General Anthony Clement McAuliffe (July 2, 1898 - August 11, 1975) was the United States Army general who commanded the defending 101st Airborne troops during the Battle of Bastogne, Belgium, during the Battle of the Bulge in World War II. He is famous for his single-word reply to a German surrender ultimatum: "Nuts!"


Born in Washington, D.C. on July 2, 1898, McAuliffe was a student at West Virginia University from 1916-17, and graduated from West Point in November 1918. He rose through the ranks from second lieutenant in 1918 to general in 1955.

World War II

McAuliffe was serving as Commander of Division Artillery of the 101st Airborne Division when he parachuted into Normandy on D-Day and when he entered into Holland during Operation Market Garden in a glider. In December 1944, when the German army launched their surprise offensive, General Maxwell D. Taylor, commander of the 101st Airborne Division, was away, attending a staff conference in the United States.

Battle of the Bulge

In Taylor's absence, acting command of the 101st and its attached troops fell to McAuliffe. At Bastogne, the 101st was besieged by a far-larger force of Germans under the command of General Heinrich Freiherr von Lüttwitz, who soon demanded that the Americans surrender. McAuliffe sent back his now-famous reply: "NUTS!" The 101st was able to hold off the German assault until the 4th Armored Division arrived to provide reinforcement. For his actions at Bastogne, McAuliffe was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross by General Patton on December 30, 1944, followed later by the Distinguished Service Medal.


After the Battle of the Bulge, McAuliffe was given command of his own division, the 103rd Infantry Division of the US 7th Army, which he led from January 15, 1945 to July, 1945.

Following the war, McAuliffe held many positions, including Chief Chemical Officer of the Army Chemical Corps, and G-1, Head of Army Personnel. He returned to Europe as Commander of the Seventh Army in 1953, and Commander-in-Chief of the United States Army Europe in 1955. He was promoted to general on March 1, 1955.


In 1956, he retired from the Army. He worked for American Cyanamid Corporation from 1956-63 as Vice President for Personnel. He began a program to teach employees to maintain contact with local politicians. The company now requires all branch managers to at least introduce themselves to local politicians. [ [,9171,873724,00.html?iid=chix-sphere Business in Politics - TIME ] ] McAuliffe also served as chairman of the New York State Civil Defense Commission from 1960-1963.

He resided in Chevy Chase, Maryland until his death on August 11, 1975, age 77, and is buried along with his wife, son, and daughter in Arlington National Cemetery.


On December 22, 1944, General Heinrich Freiherr von Lüttwitz sent the following ultimatum to Gen. McAuliffe:

To the U.S.A. Commander of the encircled town of Bastogne. The fortune of war is changing. This time the U.S.A. forces in and near Bastogne have been encircled by strong German armored units. More German armored units have crossed the river Our near Ortheuville, have taken Marche and reached St. Hubert by passing through Hompre-Sibret-Tillet. Libramont is in German hands. There is only one possibility to save the encircled U.S.A. troops from total annihilation: that is the honorable surrender of the encircled town. In order to think it over a term of two hours will be granted beginning with the presentation of this note. If this proposal should be rejected one German Artillery Corps and six heavy A. A. Battalions are ready to annihilate the U.S.A. troops in and near Bastogne. The order for firing will be given immediately after this two hours term. All the serious civilian losses caused by this artillery fire would not correspond with the well-known American humanity. The German Commander.
According to various accounts from those present, when McAuliffe was told of the German demand for surrender he said "Aw, nuts". At a loss for an official reply, Lt. Col. Kinnard suggested that his first remark summed the situation up well, which was agreed to by the others. The official reply: "To the German Commander, NUTS!, The American Commander" was typed and delivered by Colonel Harper and Major Jones to the German delegation. Harper had to explain the meaning of the word to the Germans.According to an article in the Daily Mail (a British Newspaper) the reply was not Nuts but a four letter expletive that was changed for propaganda purposes for domestic consumption.


Route 33 in eastern Pennsylvania is called the Gen. Anthony Clement McAuliffe 101st Airborne Memorial Highway.

ee also


* [ entry]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Anthony McAuliffe — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Anthony McAuliffe Anthony Clement McAuliffe (2 de julio de 1898 11 de agosto de 1975) fue un general del Ejército de los Estados Unidos, encargado de dirigir la defensa de la 101.ª División Aerotransportada, de las… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Anthony McAuliffe — Anthony Clement McAuliffe (* 2. Juli 1898 in Washington D. C.; † 11. August 1975 in Washington D. C.) war ein US amerikanischer General. Er kommandierte zeitweise die 101. US Luftlandedivision in der Schlacht von Bastogne während der… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Anthony McAuliffe — Pour les articles homonymes, voir McAuliffe. Anthony Clement McAuliffe …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Anthony Mac Auliffe — Anthony McAuliffe Pour les articles homonymes, voir McAuliffe. Anthony Clement McAuliffe Naissance …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Anthony C. McAuliffe — Anthony Clement McAuliffe (* 2. Juli 1898 in Washington D. C.; † 11. August 1975 ebd.) war ein US amerikanischer General. Er kommandierte zeitweise die 101. US Luftlandedivision in der Schlacht von Bastogne während der Ardennenoffensive im… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • McAuliffe — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Anthony McAuliffe (1898–1975), US amerikanischer General Christa McAuliffe (1948–1986), US amerikanische Astronautin Jack McAuliffe (1866–1937), US amerikanischer Boxer Michael Francis McAuliffe… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • McAuliffe — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom.  Pour l’article homophone, voir Mac Auliffe. Patronymie Anthony McAuliffe (1898 1975) était un général américain ; Christa McAuliffe (1948 1986) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • McAuliffe (surname) — McAuliffe or MacAuliffe is a surname of Norse Irish origin.[1] The name is an Anglicisation of the Gaelic Mac Amhlaoibh , meaning son of Amhlaoibh .[1] The Gaelic name, Amhlaoibh, was derived from the Old Norse personal name Olaf …   Wikipedia

  • Anthony Joseph O’Connell — (* 10. Mai 1938 in Lisheen, Irland) war von 1988 bis 1998 Bischof von Knoxville und von 1998 bis 2002 Bischof von Palm Beach. Nachdem bekannt geworden war, dass er Jugendliche sexuell mißbraucht hatte, trat er von seinem Amt zurück. Leben Anthony …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • McAuliffe, Anthony C(lement) — ▪ United States general born July 2, 1898, Washington, D.C. died Aug. 11, 1975, Washington  U.S. Army general who commanded the force defending Bastogne, Belgium, in the Battle of the Bulge (Bulge, Battle of the) (December 1944) during World War… …   Universalium