Joseph Joffre

1852–1931

GENERAL JOSEPH JOFFRE
Joseph Joffre was commander of the French Army during the early stages of World War I. He is most well known for rallying the retreating French forces and leading them to victory against the Germans at the crucial First Battle of the Marne.

Joffre was born in Roussillon and attended the École Polytechnique, where he graduated as a career officer. He participated in the Franco-Prussian War but spent much of his early years in China, serving in the Keelung Campaign during the Sino-French War. He returned to France and was made commander-in-chief of the French army, despite his limited leadership experience. His troops were forced to retreat when Germany descended on Paris at the start of the First World War, but he organized a counterattack and led France to victory in the First Battle of the Marne. He was replaced two years later following several enormous losses, but, still widely popular, he was made Marshal of France. Joffre was also appointed head of the French Military Mission meant to reform the struggling Romanian army, and, after spending a year in the country, he was moved to a similar position in the United States. There he was chosen as leader of the Supreme War Council, and Mount Joffre in Canada was named after him. He passed away in 1931, and his memoirs were published a year after his death.


Key events during the life of Joseph Joffre:


Year
Event
1852
Born
1870
Franco-Prussian War
1884
Served durign the Sino-French War
1911
Was made commander-in-chief of the French Army
1914
Defeated the Germans at the First Battle of the Marne
1916
Replaced as commander-in-chief but made Marshal of France
  Appointed head of the French Military Mission in Romania
1917
Appointed head of the French Military Mission in America
1918
Was made leader of the Supreme War Council
1918
Mt. Joffre in Canada was named after him
1931
Passed away in Paris

Other Resources


Story Links
Book Links
General Joffre  in  Heroes and Heroic Deeds of the Great War  by  Donald A. Mackenzie
Joffre  in  Boy's Book of Famous Soldiers  by  J. Walker McSpadden
Campaign on Paris  in  The Story of the Great War  by  Roland G. Usher


Image Links


General Joffre
 in Heroes and Heroic Deeds of the Great War

Four Allied Commanders in France
 in The Little Book of the War


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