Arthur goes into service

December 1, 1942

After his high school education Arthur Whitbeck enlisted in the army. At Camp Claiborne in Louisiana, he was trained as a tank technician and assigned to B Company, 784th Tank Battalion. Arthur was part of a crew of a Sherman tank.

Read the story: overview >

To the front

Le Havre, dec. 25, 1944

784 Tank Battalion embarked on Oct 30 '44 in America and arrived on Christmas Day in Le Havre (F). The front line lay along the German border and the Batlle of the Bulge (Ardennenoffensive) was in full swing. The battalion immediately moved further. Within one week, on Dec. 31, they had entered Germany at the border at Eschweiler.

Read the whole story: Combat route (1) >

Anxious hours

Sevelen, March 2, 1945

Task Force Byrne went smoothly. That changed on March 2, when Arthur's B Company fought at Sevelen, which was strongly defended by German paratroopers. The Americans were sealed off from reinforcements and supplies ...

Read the whole story: Combat route (3) >

Arthur is killed

Kamperbruch, March 4 1945

On March 4 Arthur and his comrades were ordered to attack Kamperbruch. The commander expected little opposition, but the Germans had set up tank guns. Arthur's tank was directly hit.

Read the whole story: Combat route (4) >

July 1943 (?)

Registration ARC

September 1943

to the UK

July 16, 1944

Landing on Utah Beach

March 15, 1945


May 1, 1945

Died on pleasure flight

June 19, 1945

Buried in Margraten, Block RR, Row 12 Grave 290

November 23, 1943

Departure for Europa

January 20, 1944

Arriving in England

June 1944

Landing Omaha Beach

US enters the war

December 11, 1941

Nazi Germany declares war on the US

Turnaround WWII

Februari 2, 1943

Battle of Stalingrad: Red Army defeats Germans


Arthur Whitbeck

The African American Tank technician

Born: Ca 1924
Location: Hudson, New York


Family Whitbeck was of African American descent. Whitbeck's
father worked in a garage and the family lived at 6 Spring Street
in Hudson. Arthur was nicknamed Snookie by his grandfather.
The name can be seen on a preserved shopping
list that Snookie sent to his grandmother
asking her to buy supplies for him
and to send them to the front. The
items on the list included writing
paper, brushes, crackers and socks.

Hudson New York

The family lived in the town of Hudson,
along the river of the same name, north of
New York. Hudson is generally
regarded as the oldest settlement
along the Hudson River, named after
Henry Hudson, the 16th century English explorer
and traveler who was the first to explore the river.

The Whitbeck family is directly descended from the founder of Hudson, the Dutch settler John Thomas Van Witbeck, who around 1660 bought land from the local Indians (the Mohicans) and settled there with his family. Arthur J. Whitbeck was therefore of both African American and Dutch descent.