The Forest of Argonne (French pronunciation: [aʁɡɔn]) is a long strip of mountainous and wild woodland in northeastern France, approximately 200 km (120 mi) east of Paris. The forest measures roughly 40 miles long and 10 miles wide filled with many small hills and deep valleys formed by water run-off from the Aire and Aisne rivers rarely exceeding more than 650 feet in elevation. Post World War l the landscape of the forest was forever changed, trench warfare lead to parts of the forest being riddled with deep man-made trenches along with craters from explosives. The forest is bordered by the Meuse River on the west and rolling farmland and creeks to the east. The forest is largely oak, chestnut, and pine trees, and ferns cover much of the forest floor. Common animal life consists of wild boar, red deer, roe deer, hares, rabbits, foxes, wildcat, and brown bears.
During World War I, the forest again became the site of intense military action. Bitter fighting between German and Allied units took place here in fall and winter 1914, summer 1915, and fall 1918. During the Meuse–Argonne offensive (1918), several United States Army soldiers earned the Medal of Honor there, including Colonel Nelson Miles Holderman, Major Charles White Whittlesey, Sergeant Alvin C. York, Corporal Harold W. Roberts and William Henry Johnson (a.k.a. "Black Death"), most of them part of the "Lost Battalion". The World War I Montfaucon American Monument consists of a large granite Doric column surmounted by a statue symbolic of Liberty. The monument is located 32 kilometres (20 mi) northwest of Verdun, not far from the Meuse–Argonne American Cemetery and Memorial.