Second Infantry Division / 2nd Division
"The Indianhead Division"
World War I
Belleau Wood (4th Marine Brigade; 5th Marine Regiment; 6th Marine Regiment ONLY)
World War II
First UN Counteroffensive
CCF Spring Offensive
UN Summer-Fall Offensive
Second Korean Winter
Korea, Summer-Fall 1952
Third Korean Winter
Korea, Summer 1953
Presidential Unit Citation (Army) for HONGCHON
French Croix de Guerre with Palm, World War I for AISNE-MARNE
French Croix de Guerre with Palm, World War I for MEUSE-ARGONNE
French Croix de Guerre, World War I, Fourragere
Belgian Fourragere 1940
Cited in the Order of the Day of the Belgian Army for action in the ARDENNES
Cited in the Order of the Day of the Belgian Army for action at ELSENBORN CREST
Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation for NAKTONG RIVER LINE
Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation for KOREA
Sept 21, 1917
World War I
Constituted September 21, 1917 in the Regular Army as Headquarters, 2d Infantry Division, 2nd ID was organized on October 26, 1917, at Bourmont, Haute Marne, France. At the time of its activation, the Indianhead Division was composed of the 3d Infantry Brigade, which was a normal Organic Brigade which included the 9th Infantry Regiment; 23d Infantry Regiment; and the 4th Marine Brigade, which consisted of the 5th Marine Regiment and the 6th Marine Regiment, a battalion of field artillery, and various supporting units.
(Special Note: The Navy furnished the hospital corpsmen for the 4th Marine Brigade, 5th Marine Regiment and 6th Marine Regiment, and made a special uniform change which allows hospital corpsmen of these organizations to wear a shoulder strap on the left shoulder of the "Dress Blues" so that the French Fourragere could be worn. These are the only Navy units to wear the Fourragere.
Twice during "The Great War" the division was commanded by Marine Corps generals, Major General Charles A. Doyen and Major General John A. Lejeune, marking the only times in U.S. Military history when Marine Corps officers commanded an Army division.
The division spent the winter of 1917–1918 training with French Army veterans. Though judged unprepared by French tacticians, the American Expeditionary Force (AEF) was committed to combat in the spring of 1918 in a desperate attempt to halt a German advance toward Paris. The 2d Infantry Division drew its first blood in the nightmare landscape of the Battle of Belleau Wood, and contributed to shattering the four year old stalemate on the battlefield during the Château-Thierry campaign that followed. On 28 July 1918, MajGen John A. Lejeune assumed command of the 2d Infantry Division and remained in that capacity until August 1919, when the unit was demobilized. He was the only Marine officer to command an Army division. The division won hard fought victories at Soissons and Mont Blanc, for which it was awarded the French Fourragère in the colors of the Croix de Guerre. Finally the Indianhead Division participated in the Meuse-Argonne offensive which spelled the end of any German hope for victory. On 11 November 1918 the Armistice was declared, and the 2d Infantry Division marched into Germany where it performed occupation duties until April of 1919. 2nd Infantry Division returned to U. S. in July 1919.
Killed in action - 1,964 (including USMC, 4,478)
Wounded in action - 9,782 (including USMC, 17,752)
Total - 11,746 (including USMC, 22,230)
BG C. A. Doyen, USMC (26 October 1917),
MG Omar Bundy (8 November 1917),
MG James G. Harbord (15 July 1918),
MG John A. Lejeune, USMC (26 July 1918).
Source for the World War I data and information: US Army Center of Military History The following combat chronicles, current as of October 1948, are reproduced from The Army Almanac: A Book of Facts Concerning the Army of the United States, U.S. Government Printing Office, 1950, pp. 510-592.
Upon returning to the United States, the division was stationed at Fort Sam Houston, at San Antonio, Texas as one of three divisions to remain intact and on Active Duty for the entire interwar period. It remained there for the next 23 years, serving as an experimental unit, testing new concepts and innovations for the Army. In 1940 the 2d Infantry Division was the first command reorganized under the new triangular concept, which provided for three separate regiments in each division. Indianhead soldiers pioneered concepts of airmobility and anti-tank warfare, which served the army for the next two decades on battlefields in every corner of the globe.
2ID started taking part in maneuvers at Christine, Texas between January 3 and January 27, 1940. It then moved to Horton, Texas for maneuvers from April 26 to May 28, 1940, followed by maneuvers at Cravens, Louisiana from August 16 to August 23, 1940. It returned to Fort Sam Houston, where it continued training and refitting, until it moved to Brownswood, Texas for the VIII Corps Maneuvers from June 1 through June 14, 1941 at Comanche, Texas. The division was then sent to Mansfield, Louisiana from August 11 through October 2, 1941 for the August-September, 1941 Louisiana Maneuvers.
2ID was transferred to the VIII Corps Louisiana maneuver Area on July 27, 1941, and remained there until September 22, 1942, whereapon the 2ID returned to Fort Sam Houston. They then moved to Camp McCoy at Sparta, Wisconsin on November 27, 1942. Four months of intensive training for winter warfare followed. In September 1943 the division received their staging orders, and moved to the Camp Shanks staging area at Orangeburg, New York on October 3, 1943, where they got their Port Call orders. On 8 October the division officially sailed from the New York Port Of Embarkation, and started arriving in Belfast, Ireland on October 17. They then moved over to England, where they trained and staged for forward movement to France.
World War II
Assignments in the European Theater of Operations
22 October 1943: Attached to First Army
24 December 1943: XV Corps, but attached to First Army
14 April 1944: V Corps, First Army
1 August 1944: V Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group
17 August 1944: XIX Corps
18 August 1944: VIII Corps, Third Army, 12th Army Group
5 September 1944: VIII Corps, Ninth Army, 12th Army Group
22 October 1944: VIII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group
11 December 1944: V Corps
20 December 1944: Attached, with the entire First Army, to the British 21st Army Group
18 January 1945: V Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group
28 April 1945: VII Corps
1 May 1945: V Corps
6 May 1945: Third Army, 12th Army Group
After training in Ireland and Wales from October 1943 to June 1944, the 2d Infantry Division crossed the channel to land on Omaha Beach on D plus 1, 7 June 1944, near St. Laurent-sur-Mer. Attacking across the Aure River, the Division liberated Trevieres, 10 June, and proceeded to assault and secure Hill 192, the key enemy strongpoint on the road to St. Lô. With the hill taken 11 July 1944, the Division went on the defensive until 26 July. Exploiting the St. Lô break-through, the 2d Division advanced across the Vire to take Tinchebray 15 August 1944. The Division then moved west to join the battle for Brest, the heavily defended fortress surrendering 18 September 1944 after a 39-day contest.
The Division took a brief rest September 19–September 26 before moving to defensive positions at St. Vith, Belgium on September 29, 1944. The division entered Germany on October 3, 1944, and the Second was ordered, on December 11, 1944, to attack and seize the Roer River dams. The German Ardennes offensive in mid-December forced the Division to withdraw to defensive positions near Elsenborn, where the German drive was halted. In February 1945 the Division attacked, recapturing lost ground, and seized Gemund, March 4. Reaching the Rhine March 9, the 2ID advanced south to take Breisig, March 10–11, and to guard the Remagen bridge, March 12–March 20.
The Division crossed the Rhine 21 March and advanced to Hadamar and Limburg an der Lahn, relieving elements of the 9th Armored Division, 28 March. Advancing rapidly in the wake of the 9th Armored, the 2d Infantry Division crossed the Weser at Veckerhagen, April 6–April 7, captured Göttingen 8 April, established a bridgehead across the Saale, 14 April, seizing Merseburg on April 15. On April 18 the Division took Leipzig, mopped up in the area, and outposted the Mulde River; elements which had crossed the river were withdrawn 24 April. Relieved on the Mulde, the 2d moved 200 miles, 1 May–3 May, to positions along the German-Czech border near Schonsee and Waldmunchen, where 2 ID relieved the 97th and 99th ID's. The division crossed over to Czechoslovakia on May 4, 1945, and attacked in the general direction of Pilsen, attacking that city on VE Day.
2d Infantry Division returned to the New York Port Of Embarkation on July 20, 1945, and arrived at Camp Swift at Bastrop, Texas on July 22, 1945. They started a training schedule to prepare them to participate in the scheduled invasion of Japan, but they were still at Camp Swift on VJ Day. They then moved to the Staging Area at Camp Stoneman at Pittsburg, California on March 28, 1946, but the move eastward was cancelled, and they received orders to move to Fort Lewis at Tacoma, Washington. They arrived at Fort Lewis on April 15, 1946, which became their Home Station. From their Fort Lewis base, they conducted Arctic, air transportability, amphibious, and maneuver training.
MG John C. H. Lee (6 November 1941-8 May 1942)
MG Walter M. Robertson (9 May 1942-June 1945)
BG W. K. Harrison (June-September 1945)
MG Edward M. Almond (September 1945-June 1946)
MG Paul W. Kendall (June 1946 to 24 May 1948)
MG Harry J. Collins (30 June 1948-)
MG Kid Chris (02 Feb 1952-)
Killed in action: 3,031
Wounded in action: 12,785
Died of wounds: 457
An M4 Sherman tank of the 2nd Infantry firing on enemy positions in 1952With the outbreak of hostilities in Korea during the summer of 1950, the 2d Infantry Division was quickly alerted for movement to the Far East Command. The division arrived in Korea, via Pusan on 23 July, becoming the first unit to reach Korea directly from the United States. Initially employed piecemeal, the entire division was committed as a unit on 24 August, 1950, relieving the 24th Infantry Division at the Naktong River Line. The first big test came when the North Koreans struck in a desperate human wave attack on the night of 31 August. In the 16-day battle that followed, the division’s clerks, bandsmen, technical and supply personnel joined in the fight to defend against the attackers.
Shortly thereafter, the 2ID was the first unit to break out of the Pusan Perimeter and they led the Eighth Army drive to the Manchurian Border. Now within fifty miles of the Manchurian border when Chinese forces entered the fight, soldiers of the 2d Infantry Division were given the mission of protecting the rear and right flank of the Eighth Army as it retired to the South. Fighting around Kuna-ri cost the division nearly one third of its strength, but was ten times more costly to the enemy and the way was kept open. The Chinese winter offensive was finally blunted by the 2d Infantry Division on 31 January at Wonju. Taking up the offensive in a two-prong attack in February, 1951, the Division repulsed a powerful Chinese counter-offensive in the epic battles of Chipyong-ni and Wonju. The United Nations front was saved and the general offensive continued.
Again in April and May 1951, the 2d Infantry Division was instrumental in smashing the communist's spring offensive. For its part in this action the 2nd Infantry Division was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation. What followed were alternating periods of combat and rest, with the division participating in the Battle of Bloody Ridge and Battle of Heartbreak Ridge. Finally, on 9 April 1953, the Division was moved to a rear area and on 20 August 1954, four years after its last unit arrived in Korea, the 2ID was alerted for re-deployment to the United States.
7,094 Killed in action
16,575 Wounded in action
338 Died of wounds
In the summer of 1954 the 2d Infantry Division was transferred from Korea to Fort Lewis, Washington, where it remained for only two years, until being transferred to Alaska in August of 1956. On 8 November 1957, it was announced that the division was to be deactivated. However, a few short months later, in the spring of 1958, the Department of the Army announced that the 2d Infantry Division would be reorganized at Fort Benning, Georgia, with personnel and equipment of the 10th Infantry Division returning from Germany. Fort Benning remained the home of the new 2d Infantry Division from 1958 to 1965, where they were initially assigned the mission of a training division. To improve combat readiness, in March of 1962 the 2ID was designated as a Strategic Army Corps (STRAC) unit. Following this the Division became engaged in intensified combat training, tactical training, and field training exercises, in addition to special training designed to improve operational readiness.
Back to Korea
As a result of increasing tensions on the Korean peninsula, the 2d Infantry Division returned to the Republic of Korea in July of 1965. North Korean forces were engaging in increasing border incursions and infiltration attempts and the 2d Infantry Division was called upon to help halt these attacks. On 2 November 1966, soldiers of the 1st Battalion, 23d Infantry Regiment were killed in an ambush by North Korean forces. In 1967 enemy attacks in the demilitarized zone increased, as a result, 16 American soldiers were killed that year.
In 1968 North Koreans continued to probe across the DMZ, and in 1969, while on patrol, 4 soldiers of 3d Battalion, 23d Infantry were killed, but by 1970 the North had decided that their efforts against the 2ID weren’t worth the cost and organized attacks stopped that year. By March of 1971 ROK forces had assumed the responsibility for the defense of all but 500 yards of the DMZ, allowing the 2d Infantry Division to maintain combat readiness in case of any eventuality.
On 18 August 1976, during a routine tree-trimming operation within the DMZ, two American officers were bludgeoned to death in a melee with North Korean border guards called the Axe Murder Incident. What resulted is known as Operation Paul Bunyan. The 2d Infantry Division was chosen to spearhead the United Nations Command response to this incident and on 21 August, Task Force Brady, a group of ROK soldiers, American infantry, and engineers, swept into the area and cut down the infamous "Panmunjeom Tree". The 2d Infantry Division delivered an unmistakable message to the North Koreans, as well as to the world.
The 2d Infantry Division is still stationed in Korea, with a number of camps near the DMZ. Command headquarters are at Camp Red Cloud in Uijongbu.
Operation Iraqi Freedom
During the late spring of 2004, much of the soldiers of the 2nd Infantry Division’s 2nd Brigade Combat Team were given notice that they were about to be ordered to further deployment, with duty in Iraq. Units involved in this call-up included (but was not limited to:) 1/503rd Infantry Regiment (Air Assault), 1/506th Infantry Regiment (Air Assault) , 2/17th Field Artillery, 1/9 Infantry Regiment (Mechanized), 2nd Forward Support Battalion, and portions of the 2/72nd Armor. Time from first notice of deployment to actual “wheels-up” exit of the peninsula was very short. As such, an extreme amount of training was conducted by the Brigade as they switched from a focus of the foreign defense of South Korea to the more offensive operations that were going to be needed in action in Iraq. Furthermore, time was given for the majority of the soldiers to enjoy two weeks of leave to visit the United States. This was vital: many of the soldiers had been in South Korea for a year or more with only two weeks or less time in the United States during their stay of duty. More, they were about to depart on a deployment that was scheduled to last at least another year. Finally, circa September of 2004, the Brigade deployed to Iraq.
Upon landing in country, the 2nd BCT was given strategic command to much of the sparsely populated area south and west of Fallujah. Their mission, however, changed when the major strategic actions began to take place within the city proper. At this time, the Brigade Combat Team was refocused and given control of the eastern half of the volatile city of Ar-Ramadi. Many of the units had to physically move to new camps in support of this new mission. This became the primary focus of the 2nd BCT for much of their deployment.
The Brigade was spread out amongst many camps. To the west of the city of Ar-Ramadi sat the camp of Junction City. 2ID units stationed there included 2/17 Field Artillery. To the eastern end of the city sat a much more austere camp, known ironically as the Combat Outpost. This was home to the 1/503rd Infantry Regiment. East of them but outside of the city proper itself was the town of Habbiniya and the 1/506th Infantry Regiment. Adjacent to this camp was the logistically important camp of Al-Taqaddum.
For this mission, the Brigade fell under the direct command not of the 2nd Infantry Division, but rather the Marine unit that was in control at the time. For the first six months while in Ramadi, the BCT fell under to the 1st Marine Division. For the second half of the deployment, they were attached to the 2nd Marine Division. While the Marines do not sport patches on their uniforms as such, the units of the 2nd BCT involved are authorized to now wear any of the following combat patches: the 2nd Infantry Division patch, the 1st Marine Division unit patch or the 2nd Marine Division unit patch.
The 2nd Brigade Combat Team was in action in the city of Ramadi for many historical events but most notably the Iraqi national elections of January, 2005. Much man-power and effort was put into stabilizing the city for this event. While the voting went off without a hitch and little to no violence was seen within the city, a minimal amount of voters participated (estimated to be in the 700 person range for the eastern half of the city, according to 2nd BCT officials). While the numbers left something to be desired, the BCT noted the lack of violence as a sign of success.
The 2nd BCT also left its mark on the area in other ways. They built several new camps within the city. For security reasons, many are left unverified, however ones that can be confirmed include Camps Trotter and Corregidor built to ease the burden on the accommodations at Combat Outpost.
In the late summer of 2005, the Brigade began to get relieved by units of the United States National Guard, as well as the Third Infantry Division of the Regular Army. The units of the 2nd BCT were given word that they would not be returning to South Korea but, rather, to Fort Carson, Colorado in an effort to restructure the Army and house more soldiers on American soil.
Restructuring of 2nd BCT
Upon arriving at Fort Carson, the Brigade began to quickly change. In fact, this change is still under way. Unit names and designations were taken from the 2nd BCT and unfurled on other bases. For example, the 1/503rd (Air Assault) Infantry Regiment disbanded in Fort Carson and transferred to 173rd Infantry Brigade (Airborne) in Italy where it is now stationed with its sister battalion, the 2/503rd Infantry Regiment (Airborne). The soldiers of the former 1/503rd now became members of the 1/9th Infantry. The previous soldiers of the 1/9th Infantry became known as the newly formed, 3-61st Cavalry. The entire brigade saw (or, more precisely is seeing, as of 2006) restructuring. The “new” Brigade Combat Team is made up of the following units:
2d Brigade Support Battalion
2d Special Troops Battalion
2d Battalion 12th Infantry Regiment
1st Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment
3d Squadron 61st Cavalry Regiment
The transformation now has the BCT more precisely considered an Infantry Brigade Combat Team, in accordance with the new standards for the modular force. It is also rumored that the Brigade will be leaving the 2nd Infantry Division, altogether.
Future Configuration of 2nd ID
2nd Infantry Division
1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team - Korea
2-9th Infantry Battalion (Combined Arms)
1-72nd Armor Battalion (Combined Arms)
4-7th Cavalry Squadron (Armed Recon)
1-15th Field Artillery Battalion
302nd Support Battalion
Special Troops Battalion, 1-2ID
2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team
2-1st Infantry Battalion (Stryker)
1-17th Infantry Battalion (Stryker)
4-23rd Infantry Battalion (Stryker)
8-1st Cavalry Squadron (RSTA)
2-17th Field Artillery Battalion
2nd Support Battalion
A Co 52nd Infantry Regiment (Anti-Tank)
562nd Engineer Company
21st Signal Company
572nd Military Intelligence Company
3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team
2-3rd Infatry Battalion (Stryker)
5-20th Infantry Battalion (Stryker)
1-23rd Infantry Battalion (Stryker)
1-14th Cavalry Squadron (RSTA)
1-37th Field Artillery Battalion
296th Support Battalion
C Co, 52nd Infantry Regiment (Anti-Tank)
18th Engineer Company
334th Signal Company
209th Military Intelligence Company
4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team
4-9th Infantry Battalion (Stryker)
2-23rd Infantry Battalion (Stryker)
1-38th Infantry Battalion (Stryker)
2-1st Cavalry Squadron (RSTA)
2-12th Field Artillery Battalion
702nd Support Battalion
F Co, 52nd Infantry Regiment (Anti-Tank)
38th Engineer Company
472nd Signal Company
45th Military Intelligence Company
Divisional history from: http://en.wikipedia....fantry_Division