The Netherlands / Landmark

Bridges over the river Geul




In the weeks preceding the liberation of South Limburg, the German troops hastily built fortifications along the river Geul. They blew up nearly all the bridges over the natural barrier on or around 13 September 1944. The destruction of the bridge at Wilhelminalaan in Valkenburg was postponed for a while because it was part of an essential traffic artery. With the Americans in sight, the defenders blew up part of the bridge on 14 September.

Many buildings were damaged by the explosions and the subsequent siege that lasted for days. Nobody was safe on the streets. Most residents sought refuge in caves or cellars.

Troops of the American Old Hickory Division crossed the river Geul on 16 September and met the last of the German resistance on the Goudsberg one day later. They had already destroyed the remains of the bridge over the river Geul to prevent a possible German counter-attack.

Wilhelminalaan 44-42, 6301 GJ Valkenburg