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countered the first of the enemy in the wooded ravine of the Hallerbach, well camouflaged in unorthodox positions facing both sides of the ravine so that the attackers found themselves receiving mortar, Werfer, and bullet fire from front and rear.


About 1000 Maj. John N. Acuff, the battalion commander, withdrew his infantry a short distance to see what a mortar barrage could do. The woods were thick, visibility was poor, and mortar fire proved not very effective. When the Americans resumed the assault they in turn were hit by a counterattack. It was dusk when the enemy finally gave way and the 2d Battalion reached the woods north of the ravine. Ordered by Colonel Black to continue the attack through the night, the battalion converged shortly after midnight in a pincers move on the town of Beaufort, located on commanding ground and controlling one of the main exit roads leading to the Dillingen bridge. The enemy held for awhile in the north edge of Beaufort but by daybreak had abandoned the town to the 2d Battalion.


During the morning of 26 December the 3d Battalion had attacked almost without opposition, crossing the Hallerbach ravine and gaining the high ground to the east of Beaufort and overlooking the road to Dillingen. But when the first appetizing target appeared, a column of a hundred or more vehicles heading for the Dillingen bridge, the artillery radios failed to function and a hasty barrage laid on the road by mortars and machine guns caught only the tail of the column. By noon patrols were in position on the river bank to observe