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D-Day – June 6

D-Day – June 6


June 6, 1944, is known most commonly by the term D-Day. It refers to the landing of Allied forces on the beaches of Normandy, France staging one of the pivotal attacks against Germany during World War II.

The codename Operation Overlord became known as the beginning of the end of World War II. Following the Battle of Normandy, which began on June 6, 1944, along a 50 mile stretch of beaches, including Utah and Omaha Beach, the attack became known as D-Day. While there are many explanations for the name, one reason may be due to the military countdown to the designated day and hour of the assault. D represented Day and H represented Hour in the military.

The battle liberated Northern France with more than 160,000 Allied troops from Britain, the United States and Canada under the leadership of General Dwight Eisenhower. The troops manned more than 5,000 ships and 13,000 aircraft the day of the initial landing.


World War II museums, memorials, and ceremonies will be honoring the American, British, and Canadian forces who landed along the 50 mile stretch of beaches that day over 75 years ago. Learn more about the Battle of Normandy by exploring World War II museums. Read books about the Battle of Normandy or listen to a podcast such as:

  • D-Day Girls: The Spies Who Armed the Resistance, Sabotaged the Nazis, and Helped Win World War II by Sarah Rose
  • The Longest Day by Cornelius Ryan
  • Normandy ’44: D-Day and the Battle for France by James Holland
  • Pegasus Bridge by Stephen E. Ambrose
  • The Bedford Boys by Alex Kershaw
  • History Extra Podcast

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The landing of troops on the beaches of Normandy on June 6, 1944, known around the world as D-Day, was given the name Operation Overlord. Leading up to the attack, plans of deception were carried out to mislead Germany.

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