Motivational Posters: George S. Patton Edition

by Brett & Kate McKay on July 5, 2009 · 41 comments

in A Man's Life, Motivational Posters

George “Old Blood and Guts” Patton was a four star general who ably led American troops during World War II. In his 36 years of distinguished service to the military, he earned the Purple Heart, 2 Distinguished Service Crosses, 3 Distinguished Service Medals,  2 Silver Stars, and several other decorations as well. Patton was as famous for his efficiency on the battlefield as his colorful personality off of it. He was a sight to behold, with his medals emblazoned on his chest, a shiny helmet upon his head, and two ivory-handled pistols around his waist. The men who served under him groused about his demand for absolute discipline, yet they knew that his strict leadership upped their chances for survival.

Patton, like every single man from history, was far from perfect. His love of war bordered on the crazy, and his behavior and outspoken nature often got him in trouble. His most famous controversial incident occurred when he slapped a man suffering from “battle fatigue” in a hospital and called him a coward.

But he was decidedly good at his job. He was born to lead men in battle. And while one can certainly disagree with his philosophy, he was undeniably a compelling leader and master motivator of men. His words will give any man a needed kick in the pants.
patton action

patton charisma

patton courage

patton delegation

patton determination

patton duty

patton equality

patton impermeance

patton integrity

patton intiative

patton leadership

patton marriage

patton moral courage

patton originality

patton retirement

patton standards

patton strength

patton cynicisim

Check out all the motivational posters from AoM: 
Theodore Roosevelt Edition
George S. Patton Edition
Ernest Hemingway Edition
Winston Churchill Edition (Part I)
Winston Churchill Edition (Part II)
Black History Month Edition
Bear Bryant Edition
Founding Fathers Edition
Band of Brothers Edition
Business Posters from the 1920s and 1930s

{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Leonard July 5, 2009 at 9:14 pm

This was great! My grandfather served under Patton in the Third Army. Like you said, he said Patton was beyond a hard ass about every little detail being right. But he also had a tremendous amount of respect for the man. It gave him confidence to know Patton was calling the shots.

I really like the new redesign by the way….love the wood paneling!

2 TheManRevolution July 6, 2009 at 3:01 am

The “Duty” and “Equality” ones were manly as hell. My chest hair grew thicker and my voice got deeper as I read them.

3 Kenney July 6, 2009 at 6:25 am

Listened to George C. Scott’s opening address as Patton from the movie during an Independence Day radio broadcast. Still gives me chills. That type of leader is missing from today’s landscape. Oh, sure I know his lack of political correctness got him into trouble even back then, but what a leader.

4 Sean July 6, 2009 at 11:28 am

Another great set, great job Brett and Kate.

5 Jonathan July 6, 2009 at 1:13 pm

Great posters. Patton is and always will be one of my favorite leaders

@ Kenney
I think a leader like that only comes around once in a while. And since we are so politaclly correct about everything, even warfare (which is very sad), leaders like Patton keep the handcuffs on so they can have a long military career.

6 Robyn July 6, 2009 at 1:42 pm

Just an interesting tidbit about Patton: My father served under Patton in WW2. He had upon occasion the opportunity to speak with him or rather be reprimanded by him. He liked Patton a great deal and thought it strange that the general had a “squeaky girlish voice”.

7 R. J. Vincent July 6, 2009 at 2:35 pm

My significant other’s dad served under Patton during WW 2. He even got to personally salute him at a crossroads in France one fine summer day. He thought highly of him.

8 Alessandro July 7, 2009 at 5:58 pm

Is there any way to find high resolution images or purchase these posters?

9 Julian July 7, 2009 at 9:24 pm

ditto on Alessandro’s post. Need a good wallpaper sized one.

10 CathleenRitt July 8, 2009 at 1:00 am

These are almost better than the Teddy Roosevelt posters and that says a lot. Thanks

11 Waltman July 8, 2009 at 8:35 am

I agree: great posters. Would like some high-res versions for printing.

12 Dan July 8, 2009 at 9:23 am

I like the swivel chair comment…

13 Flashman July 8, 2009 at 11:43 am

The posters are great! I do have a request… Can you make the posters larger to save as Wallpapers or screensavers for our computers? I know some will say that “fancy” wallpapers are not manly, but a black and white photograph of Old Blood and Guts sends a pretty strong message.

14 Deyka July 8, 2009 at 5:23 pm

Your motivational poster are awesome. I am wondering were could I find past editions. Like Theodore Roosevelt edition.

15 Enrique S July 9, 2009 at 12:54 pm

I like the Motivational Posters series. I liked the Initiative quote in particular. Whenever the movie “Patton” is on, I usually watch it.

16 Brian July 9, 2009 at 1:58 pm

Great posters. His quotes remind me of my grandfather. It does not take many words to say a lot.

17 Pete July 12, 2009 at 11:55 pm

General Patton was a leader. Like any human he had his faults, but his qualities as leader rose to the top. Like any true leader he spoke up and a lot of time it was not what his superiors and others wanted to hear. I firmly believe you don’t have to be politically correct when your right.

Learn from Patton and the other great leaders in perilous times. When you lead men into dangerous situations you will truly see what a man is made of or if they merely talk the talk.

18 rmax July 14, 2009 at 2:11 am

Patton never achieved the rank of general (four stars). He was a lieutenant general when he died. He had flaws as we all do; he was a bigot and a racist. He was a great general: feared by his enemy, respected by his troops.

19 Ben Forbus July 14, 2009 at 5:15 am

Thousands of unarmed WW1 veterans were burned out of their camp on us soil by Patton and men under his leadership……

20 T.R. Melcher July 14, 2009 at 5:36 pm

Hate to bust your bubble rmax, but George S. Patton did recieve his fourth star and if you look at the poster for impermanence, his photo will bear this out.

21 Chas Morgan August 5, 2009 at 1:24 pm

A young officer Patton saved a black calvary soldier (falsely) accused of rape from being lynched when he was first posted out West before WWI. Much later, Patton’s orderly, a black man, wept openly during his funeral. Odd behavior for a racist.

And, Melcher had it right, Patton had 4 stars in the end. Not that stars are that important given the fact that Patton was the only general that the Germans feared.

22 JimS August 8, 2009 at 2:51 pm

Max… George Patton definitely was a 4 star general. The racist and bigot comments are about as poorly founded.

Rank Patton

Second Lieutenant 11-Jun-09
First Lieutenant 23-May-16
Captain 15-May-17
Major 26-Jan-18
Lieutenant Colonel 30-Mar-18
Colonel 17-Oct-18
Captain (Peacetime reversion) 30-Jun-20
Major 1-Jul-20
Lieutenant Colonel 1-Mar-34
Colonel 1-Jul-38
Brigadier General 1-Oct-40
Major General 4-Apr-41
Lieutenant General 12-Mar-43
Brigadier General August 16, 1944[40]
Major General August 16, 1944[41]
General 14-Apr-45

23 Timothy August 11, 2009 at 7:46 pm

Not to rain on this particular parade but Patton was beyond a hard ass. He was responsible for several injuries and deaths of WW1 vets who were only trying to get what had been promised them. I recommend that some research is done on the bonus army where

“By 4:45 P.M. the troops were massed on Pennsylvania Ave. below the Capitol. Thousands of Civil Service employees spilled out of work and lined the streets to watch. The veterans, assuming the military display was in their honor, cheered. Suddenly Patton’s troopers turned and charged. “Shame, Shame” the spectators cried. Soldiers with fixed bayonets followed, hurling tear gas into the crowd.

By nightfall the BEF had retreated across the Anacostia River where Hoover ordered MacArthur to stop. Ignoring the command, the general led his infantry to the main camp. By early morning the 10,000 inhabitants were routed and the camp in flames. Two babies died and nearby hospitals overwhelmed with casualties. Eisenhower later wrote, “the whole scene was pitiful. The veterans were ragged, ill-fed, and felt themselves badly abused. To suddenly see the whole encampment going up in flames just added to the pity.”

If you’re interested in learning more here’s a great link.

I’ll not take away from his great victories in WWII, but I’ll not count him among men I admire or would care to be like.

24 Freeman August 18, 2009 at 2:48 am

Oh hell yes, this made my night.

Patton is a man I look up to, and despite any personal or professional failings, he still managed to tough his way past most things that tried to inhibit him.

25 Derek September 6, 2009 at 12:56 am

Ben and Timothy: If you read the history, even on the pages you posted, you will find this–
- Patton, MacArthur, and Eisenhower were under orders from President Hoover
- Patton was in command of the cavalry and was merely the initial push.
- The infantry was the main body who drove the veterans off at bayonet point after the cavalry’s charge.
- MacArthur was the one who pursued the veterans and attacked the camp which resulted in the deaths. This was also done in defiance of Hoover’s orders.
- MacArthur also behaved in a similarly defiant way during the Korean War.

From this, I say MacArthur deserves the criticism for the reprehensible behavior, and not Patton.

26 JOE September 6, 2009 at 9:58 am

My father first saw and heard this unusual guy during the 1941 manuevers in the South prior to WW II. The U S Army was very ” rag -tag” and under-prepared . A year later, my father was part of Operation Torch and in the Western Task Force commanded by Patton. They attacked north of Casablanca in November , 1942, and he saw Patton regularly in Morrocco afterwards. He would tell me stories that later on I would read in books and see in the movie. Patton was one of a kind. Good thing he was on our side. He was a heart-breaker and a life-taker

27 Yavor October 1, 2009 at 4:09 am

Those were ridiculously good. And the posters make them so much beter.

Gracias :)

28 TerraHertz October 9, 2009 at 9:47 am

“I don’t want to get any messages saying, “I am holding my position.” We are not holding a goddamned thing. Let the Germans do that. We are advancing constantly and we are not interested in holding onto anything except the enemy’s balls. We are going to twist his balls and kick the living shit out of him all of the time. Our basic plan of operation is to advance and to keep on advancing regardless of whether we have to go over, under, or through the enemy. We are going to go through him like crap through a goose; like shit through a tin horn!”
-Gen. George Patton

Some links about Patton’s life and death:

29 David A. Patton November 9, 2009 at 4:14 pm

More to consider:

“Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.”

“Take calculated risks. That is quite different from being rash.”

Part of a much longer one, but short enough never to mistake.
“Duty is the essence of manhood.”

30 koda blakwulf November 14, 2009 at 5:10 am

“I am a soldier, I fight where I am told, and I win where I fight.”

“Lead me, follow me, or get out of my way.”

“May God have mercy on my enemies, because I won’t.”

“It is the unconquerable nature of man and not the nature of the weapon he uses that ensures victory.”

“Live for soething, rather than die for nothing.”

31 Crystal December 15, 2009 at 1:17 pm

Are these posters available for purchase??

32 Jeremy June 28, 2010 at 1:34 pm

For what is probably the best book regarding G. S. Patton, I recommend “Patton:A genius for War” by Carlos D’Este. It paints a complete picture of the man – good AND bad – without leaning to one side or the other. Although the movie “Patton” had a stellar performance by George C. Scott (which I enjoyed thoroughly), a great amount of the information for it came from the memoirs of General Bradley, who despised Patton and was very clear about that fact in later years.
@Timothy: Even given that history paints a different picture of the events than you portrayed, he was a soldier and following orders, as were others. Does one negative act remove any worthwhile qualities or make him unworthy of admiration? If so, then I have to wonder if you truly admire any mortal man or woman.

33 mike August 10, 2010 at 2:24 pm

There’ve been continual attempts to trash the reputation of Patton over the years, but he still stands out as not only one of the greatest American generals, but as an independently wealthy man could could have lived a life of ease, and instead devoted it to serving his country. He even used some of his own wealth to help keep the Armored Corps going between the wars.

34 adam August 15, 2010 at 9:01 pm

love it, the movie patton will drop your balls an extra inch, i’ve read it was a movie well loved by nixon, and after it came out he would watch it sometimes several times a month when he was at camp david

35 Ben September 22, 2012 at 2:19 am

As much as I love everything on this site, I was most compelled to comment on this post. I have always been a long time Patton fan and this is one of the best articles here. Thanks again for another great read!

36 Cody powell October 29, 2012 at 1:37 am

Something about the man. Cant help but too be drawn to him

37 Astro Gremlin October 31, 2012 at 10:36 pm

Patton was honest with his troops about the nature of war, and got the most from them.

38 Bill Tennant November 14, 2012 at 7:31 pm

Are any of these posters for sale? I would love several of them. George was and is my guy.

39 john July 7, 2013 at 8:10 pm

My grandfather was one of the drivers for Patton and Omar Bradleys Jeep. As strict as Patton was my grandfather had a great admiration for him

40 Liam Carter January 31, 2014 at 2:06 pm

Can someone help me finish Gen Patton’s timeline

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