35th Infantry Division

Brief History

Formation

The 35th Inf Div was formed on Aug. 25, 1917 at Camp Doniphan, OK (now part of Ft. Sill), from units of the Kansas and Missouri National Guard who had been mobilized for active duty. The commander was MG William Wright. It trained at Camp Doniphan until April 1918, when it moved to the ports of New York and Philadelphia for embarkation to Europe.


Organization – WW I

69th Inf Bde 70th Inf Bde 60th FA Bde
137th Inf Regt 139th Inf Regt 128th FA Regt (75mm)
138th Inf Regt 140th Inf Regt 129th FA Regt (75mm)
  130th Mach Gun Bn 130th FA Regt (155mm)
110th Trench Mortar Btry


Divisional Troops

128th Machine Gun Battalion
110th Engineer Regt
110th Field Signal Bn
Headquarters Troop
Trains


Into the Line – WW I

In France it was attached to the British 30th Division and the French 22nd Division. On June 18, 1918 the 35th moved onto the Western Front line near Epinal, France and on June 20 the 69th Brigade (137th & 138th Inf Regts) took over front line positions. On July 27 the 70th Brigade took over those positions. On Sept. 15, the 35th went into reserve as it moved to the Meuse-Argonne front.


Battles – WW I

On Sept. 26, 1918, under the command of MG Peter A. Traub, the 35th Division launched its attack in the Meuse-Argonne offensive, keeping up the attack for four days until relieved and placed in reserve. Two weeks later it re-entered the front lines in the battles at Alsace & Lorraine serving there until the armistice on Nov. 11, 1918. The division returned to the U. S. in April 1919, and was demobilized on May 30, 1919. The 35th had suffered 1,298 killed in action and 5,998 wounded in action.


Between the Wars

The 35th Infantry Division was reorganized as a three-state division on Sept. 13, 1934. It consisted of the 134th, 137th, 138th, and 140th Infantry Regiments of Kansas, Nebraska, and Missouri. It was under the command of the Fourth U. S. Army.


Mobilization – WW II

On Dec. 23, 1940, the 35th Infantry Division was mobilized for WW II, and sent to Camp Robinson, AR. It participated in the Louisiana maneuvers of 1941, and after Pearl Harbor was sent to San Luis, Obispo, CA, where it performed coastal defense duties. While there, the 138th Inf Regt was relieved from assignment to the 35th and sent to the Aleutian Islands, as was the 130th Field Artillery.


Final Preparations – WW II

On April 1, 1943, the entire division moved to Camp Rucker, AL for advanced training. While there they participated in the Tennessee Maneuvers. Then on Jan. 18, 1944, the 35th moved to Camp Butner, NC for final polishing. Combat Teams 134th and 137th went to West Virginia to attend cliff-scaling schools and take mountain training.


Organization – WW II

Infantry Regts. Field Artillery Division Support
134th Inf Regt 127th FA Bn HHC, 35th Inf Div
137th Inf Regt 161st FA Bn 35th QM Co
320th Inf Regt 216th FA Bn 35th MP Plat
  219th FA Bn 35th Cav Recon Troop
Engineers Medical 35th Signal Co
60th Engr Cmbt Bn 110th Med Bn 735th Ordnance Co


Europe Bound

During the first week of May, 1944, the 35th moved to Camp Kilmer, NJ where they were loaded onto the SS Edmund B. Alexander, the SS General A. E. Anderson, and the SS Thomas H. Berry. On May 12 the transports steamed out of the port of New York. An advance party, headed by BG Edmund B. Sebree, Asst. Div Commander, had embarked to Europe on April 20 on the SS Queen Elizabeth. On May 25, 1955, they greeted MG Paul W. Baade, division commander, and the rest of the division as they stepped ashore at Liverpool, England.


England to Omaha Beach

By May 27, all units had disembarked and were on trains to southern England. D-Day was 10 days away. For the next six weeks special combat equipment poured in and final training was conducted. General Eisenhower visited on June 25. On July 5, LCI, LCT, and LST craft, bearing the soldiers, began the trip on the choppy waters of the English Channel. By July 7 the 35th had landed on Omaha Beach and became a part of XIX Corps, whose commander, MG Charles H. Corlett, desired the 35th immediate commitment to battle.


Normandy
July 5-24, 1944

On July 8, the 35th began fighting in the Normandy hedgerows north of St. Lo alongside the famed 29th Division. Repelling a series of German counterattacks, the 35th entered St. Lo on July 18 after a fierce battle.


Northern France
July 25-Sept. 14, 1944

The 35th Div then attacked southwest of St. Lo, pushing the Germans across the Vire River on 2 Aug and breaking out of the Cotentin Peninsula. In a fierce battle at Mortain, it secured the Mortain-Avranches Corrido and rescued the 30th Division’s “Lost Battalion,” Aug. 7-13, 1944. Racing across France through Orleans and Sens, the 35th attacked across the Moselle on Sept. 13, capturing Nancy on Sept. 15, and covering more miles than any other front line division.


Rhineland
Sept. 15, 1944 – Mar. 21, 1945

The 35th Div took Chembrey on Oct. 1, and Sarreguemines on Dec. 8. During the battle for Achain in Nov., SSG Junior J. Spurrier, Co G, 134th Inf, won the Medal of Honor for gallantry in action. The 35th entered Germany on Dec. 8. After crossing the Saar and Blies Rivers, the 35th Division moved to Metz for rest and rehabilitation on Dec. 19 after 162 days of almost constant combat action.


Ardennes-Alsace
Dec. 16, 1944-Jan. 25, 1945
Battle of the Bulge

On Dec. 25-26, it was ordered to Arlon, Belgium because of the German offensive in the Ardennes, which became known as the Battle of the Bulge. Taking part in the fighting to relieve Bastogne, the 1st Bn, 134th Inf was one of the first units to reach the 101st Airborne. The 35th fought off the attacks of four German divisions, taking Villers-laBonne-Eau on Jan. 10 after a 13-day fight and Lutrebois after a 5-day fight, which involved the firing of over 41,000 artillery rounds. It then returned to Metz to continue its period of rest and relaxation.


Ardennes-Alsace
Dec. 16, 1944-Apr. 1, 1945

Following a short rest, the 35th defended in the Foret de Domaniale area, until ordered on Jan. 23 to the Alsace region of France to help stop a German attack in the Seventh Army sector. One week later the 35th made one of the longest tactical moves of the war when it deployed 292 miles, by rail and truck, to Masstricht, Holland. It relieved the British 155th Brigade on Feb. 6 in positions along the Ruhr. On Feb. 23, the 35th attacked across the Ruhr, pierced the Siegfried Line, and reached the Rhine at Wesel on Mar. 10.


Central Europe Campaign
Apr. 2 – May 8, 1945

On Mar. 25-26, the 35th Division crossed the Rhine. It smashed across the Herne Canal and was ordered to move to the Elbe on Apr. 12. Making the 295-mile dash in 2 days, the 35th mopped up in the vicinity of Colbitz and Angern until Apr. 26, capturing nearly 31,000 Germans during that time. The 35th Div then moved to Dohren, Hannover, Germany for occupational and additional mopping-up duty. Here it remained until after the German surrender on May 8.


Occupation Duty
May 8-Sept 4, 1945

On May 17-18, the 35th was moved to Recklinghausen, Germany, and then to Koblenz on June 1-4 for occupational duty. Here they took on military government duties and were allowed passes for visits to Paris, the Riviera, England, Scotland, and Switzerland. On July 11-12, the entire division, less the 137th Inf, moved to Camp Norfolk near Sommesous, France, where it was brought to full strength and readied for shipment to the Pacific Theater to fight the Japanese.


Homeward Bound
Sept 5-10, 1945

However, beginning on Aug. 15, the 35th moved to the Port of LeHavre, France for transportation to England. The 137th was sent to Brussels, Belgium to serve as an Honor Guard for President Truman. Following this duty, it sailed to Boston Harbor and Camp Myles Standish on the S.S. Cristobal August 23-31. On Sept. 5 the rest of the 35th departed Southampton, England aboard the Queen Mary, arriving in New York on Sept. 10.


Inactivation

Following 30-45 days furlough from Camp Kilmer, New Jersey, the 35th was reassembled at Camp Breckinridge, KY,. High point men were sent home and low point men were transferred to other units. On Dec. 7, 1945, Pearl Harbor Day, the Division was inactivated.
Total casualties had been 2,947 killed in action and 12,935 wounded in action.


Reorganization & Inactivation Again
1946-1963

The 35th Infantry Division reorganized in late 1946 and early 1947 as a Kansas-Missouri division. It resumed its peacetime status and continued to recruit and train, often with training at Camp Ripley, MN and Ft. Riley, KS. In 1963 the 35th Infantry Division was again inactivated, along with three other National Guard Divisions.


Reactivation
1984

On Mar. 1, 1984, the 35th Division was reorganized as a mechanized infantry division, headquartered at Ft. Leavenworth, KS, with major units as follows:
HHC, 35th Inf Div – Kansas National Guard
67th Inf Bde – Nebraska National Guard
69th Inf Bde – Kansas National Guard
149th Armor Bde – Kentucky National Guard
35th Division Artillery – Kansas (Hqs), Nebraska, Kentucky, & Missouri
35th Div Support Command – Missouri (Hqs), Kansas, Nebraska, Kentucky, and Missouri
35th Avn Bde – Colorado (Hqs), Kansas Nebraska, Kentucky, Missouri
Reactivation ceremonies were held at Ft. Leavenworth, KS on Aug. 25, 1984.


Peacekeeping Missions

The 35th Division Hqs commanded Task Force Eagle of the Multi-National Division North in Bosnia as part of the SFOR-13 NATO peacekeeping mission beginning on Jan. 13, 2003. In the fall of 2007 the 35th Division took command of Task Force Falcon (also known as KFOR 9), a multinational peacekeeping force in Kosovo, performing that mission into 2008.


Reorganization Again

The War on Terrorism of the early 2000’s brought significant changes in Army force structure. The 35th was reorganized with the Division Troops Battalion, 33rd Inf Bde Combat team (Illinois), 45th Inf Bde Combat Team (Oklahoma), 48th Inf Bde Team (Georgia), and the Combat Aviation Brigade (Hqs in Missouri and units in Nebraska, Missouri, Utah, and Kansas). Attached units were the 142d Fires Bde (Arkansas), 287th Sustainment Bde (Kansas), 110th Maneuver Enhancement Bde (Missouri), and 218th Maneuver Enhancement Bde.

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