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1st Infantry Division

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First Infantry Division / 1st Division



The Big Red One




World War I



St. Mihiel


Lorraine 1917

Lorraine 1918

Picardy 1918


World War II

Algeria-French Morocco (with arrowhead)


Sicily (with arrowhead)

Normandy (with arrowhead)

Northern France



Central Europe





Counteroffensive, Phase II

Counteroffensive, Phase III

Tet Counteroffensive

Counteroffensive, Phase IV

Counteroffensive, Phase V

Counteroffensive, Phase VI

Tet 69/Counteroffensive

Summer-Fall 1969

Winter-Spring 1970


Southwest Asia

Defense of Saudi Arabia

Liberation and Defense of Kuwait





Meritorious Unit Commendation (Army) for VIETNAM 1968


Meritorious Unit Commendation (Army) for SOUTHWEST ASIA


Army Superior Unit Award for 1997


French Croix de Guerre with Palm, World War II for KASSERINE


French Croix de Guerre with Palm, World War II for NORMANDY


French Croix de Guerre, World War II, Fourragere


Belgian Fourragere 1940


Cited in the Order of the Day of the Belgian Army for action at MONS


Cited in the Order of the Day of the Belgian Army for action at EUPEN-MALMEDY


Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm for VIETNAM 1965-1968


Republic of Vietnam Civil Action Honor Medal, First Class for VIETNAM 1965-1970



May 24, 1917








"World War I


The First Expeditionary Division, later designated the 1st Infantry Division, was Constituted on May 24, 1917 in the Regular Army, and was Organized on June 8, 1917 at Fort Jay, on Governors Island in New York harbor under the command of Brigadier General William L. Sibert, from Army units then in service on the U.S.-Mexico border and at various Army posts throughout the United States. The original Table of Organization and Equipment included two Organic Infantry Brigades of two Infantry Regiments each, one Engineer Battalion; one Signal Battalion; one Trench Mortar Battery; one Field Artillery Brigade of three Field Artillery Regiments; one Aero Squadron; and a full Division Train. The total Authorized Strength of this TO&E was 18,919 Officers and Enlisted Men. George S. Patton, who served as the first Headquarters Commandant for the American Expeditionary Force oversaw much of the arrangements for the movement of the 1st Division to France, and their organization in-country.


The first units sailed from New York and Hoboken, N.J., June 14, 1917. Throughout the remainder of the year, the rest of the Division followed, landing at St. Nazaire, France, and Liverpool, England. After a brief stay in rest camps, the troops in England proceeded to France, landing at Le Havre. The last unit arrived in St. Nazaire December 22. Upon arrival in France, the Division, less its artillery, was assembled in the First (Gondrecourt) training area, and the artillery was at Le Valdahon.


On the 4th of July, the 2nd Battalion, 16th Infantry (2-16), paraded through the streets of Paris to bolster the sagging French spirits. At Lafayette's tomb, one of General John J. Pershing's staff uttered the famous words, "Lafayette, we are here!" Two days later, July 6, Headquarters, First Expeditionary Division was redesignated as Headquarters, First Division'.


On August 8, 1917, the 1st Division adopted the Square Table of organization and Equipment, which included two organic Infantry Brigades of two Infantry Regiments each; one Engineer Regiment; one Signal Battalion; one Machine Gun Battalion; one Field Artillery Brigade of three Field Artillery Regiments, and a complete Division Train. The total Authorized Strength of this new TO&E was 27,120 Officers and Enlisted Men.


On the morning of October 23, the first American shell of the war was sent screaming toward German lines by a First Division artillery unit. Two days later, the 2-16th Inf., suffered the first American casualties of the war.


By April 1918, the Germans had pushed to within 40 miles of Paris. In reaction to this thrust, the Big Red One moved into the Picardy Sector to bolster the exhausted French First Army. To the Division's front lay the small village of Cantigny, situated on the high ground overlooking a forested countryside. The U.S. 28th Infantry Regiment|28th Inf. Regiment attacked the town, and within 45 minutes captured it along with 250 German soldiers. It was the first American victory of the war. The 28th was thereafter named the "Black Lions of Cantigny".


Soissons was taken by the First Division in July 1918. The Soissons victory was costly—700 men were killed or wounded. (One of them, Private Francis Lupo of Cincinnati, was missing in action for 85 years, until his remains were discovered on the former battlefield in 2003). The First Infantry helped to clear the St. Mihiel salient by fighting continuously from September 11–13, 1918. The last major World War I battle was fought in the Meuse-Argonne Forest. The Division advanced seven kilometers and defeated, in whole or part, eight German divisions. The war was over when the Armistice was signed. The Division was at Sedan, the farthest American penetration of the war. The Division was the first to cross the Rhine into occupied Germany.


By the end of the war, the Division had suffered 22,668 casualties and boasted five Medal of Honor recipients.



4,411 Killed in Action

17,201 Wounded in Action

1,056 Missing or Died of Wounds



Interwar period


1st Division returned to the Continental U.S. during September of 1919, and demobilized its war-time TO&E at Camp Zachary Taylor at Louisville, Kentucky, and then returned to New York, with its headquarters located at Fort Hamilton in Brooklyn, New York.


On October 7, 1920, the 1st Division organized under the peacetime TO&E, which included two Organic infantry Brigades of two Infantry Regiments each, one Engineer Regiment; one Observation Squadron; one Field Artillery Brigade of two Field Artillery Regiments; one Medical Regiment; one Division Quartermaster Train; and a Special Troops Command replacing the remainder of the Division Train. The total authorized strength of this TO&E was 19,385. 1st Division was one of three Infantry Divisions and one Cavalry Division that was authorized to remain at full peacetime strength, and it was the only Regular Army division assigned to the II Corps Area, which also included the 27th Infantry Division of the New York Army National Guard; the 44th infantry Division of the New Jersey, New York, and Delaware Army National Guards; the 21st Cavalry Division of the New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and New jersey Army national Guards; and the 77th, 78th, and 98th Infantry Divisions and the 61st Cavalry Division of the Organized Reserves. This was the organization that existed in the II Corps area for the duration of the peace period.


1st Division adopted a new peacetime TO&E in preparation for war on January 8, 1940, which included three Infantry Regiments, one MP Company, one Engineer Battalion, one Signal Company, one Light Field Artillery Regiment of three Field Artillery Battalions and one Medium Field Artillery Regiment of two Field Artillery Battalions, one Medical Battalion, and one Quartermaster Battalion. The authorized strength of this TO&E was 9,057 Officers and Enlisted Men. 1st Infantry Division reorganized again on November 1, 1940 to a new TO&E, which added a Reconnaisance Troop, and organized the two Field Artillery Regiments into a Division Artillery Command, and beefed up the strength to a total Authorized Strength of 15,245 Officers and Enlisted men.



World War II


1st Division started preparing for World War II by moving to Fort Benning on November 19, 1939, and ran its personnel through the Infantry School. It then moved to the Sabine, Louisiana area on May 11, 1940 to participate in the Louisiana Maneuvers. They then returned to Fort Hamilton on June 5, 1940. The headquarters was then transferred to Fort Devens at Ayer, Massachusetts February 4, 1941, and then participated in the October and November maneuvers in the Carolinas, with a garrison at Samarcand, North Carolina on October 16, 1941.


1st Division then returned to Fort Devens on December 6, 1941, which is where they were when Pearl Harbor was attacked. 1st Division then deployed to Camp Blanding at Starke, Florida on February 21, 1942, which is where they were when 1st Division was officially redesignated at Headquarters, 1st Infantry Division on August 1, 1942. At this time, 1st ID reorganized under the new Wartime TO&E, which increased the Authorized Strength to 15,514 Officers and Enlisted men.


A Coast Guard-manned LCVP from the USS Samuel Chase disembarks Company E, 2nd Battalion, 16th Infantry Regiment assaulting Omaha Beach on the morning of June 6, 1944.

From newly-captured town, members of the 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, cross the Weser River in assault boats to take Furstenberg. 8 April 1945.In World War II, the division landed in Oran, Algeria as part of Operation Torch. Elements then took part in combat at Maktar, Medjez el Bab, Kasserine Pass, Gafsa, El Guettar, Béja, and Mateur, 21 January – 9 May 1943, helping secure Tunisia.


In July, 1943 it took part in Operation Husky in Sicily under the command of Major General Terry de la Mesa Allen. It was assigned to U.S. II Corps. On 7 August 1943, command was assumed by Major General Clarence R. Huebner.


When that campaign was over, the Division returned to England to prepare for the Normandy invasion. It was the division that stormed Omaha Beach on D-Day, some units suffering 30 percent casualties in the first hour, and secured Formigny and Caumont in the beachhead. The Division followed up the St. Lo break-through with an attack on Marigny, 27 July 1944, and then drove across France in a continuous offensive, reaching the German border at Aachen in September. The Division laid siege to Aachen, taking the city after a direct assault, 21 October 1944. The First then attacked east of Aachen through Hurtgen Forest, driving to the Roer, and moved to a rest area 7 December for its first real rest in 6 months' combat, when the Wacht Am Rhein offensive (commonly called the Battle of the Bulge) suddenly broke loose, 16 December. The Division raced to the Ardennes, and fighting continuously from 17 December 1944 to 28 January 1945, helped blunt and turn back the German offensive. Thereupon, the Division attacked and again breached the Siegfried Line, fought across the Roer, 23 February 1945, and drove on to the Rhine, crossing at the Remagen bridgehead, 15–16 March 1945. The Division broke out of the bridgehead, took part in the encirclement of the Ruhr Pocket, captured Paderborn, pushed through the Harz Mountains, and was in Czechoslovakia, at Kinsperk, Sangerberg, and Mnichov, when the war in Europe ended. 16 members of the division were awarded the Medal of Honor.



3,616 Killed in Action

15,208 Wounded in Action

664 Died of Wounds


Assignments in the European Theater of Operations

1 November 1943: First Army.

6 November 1943: VII Corps.

2 February 1944: V Corps.

14 July 1944: First Army.

15 July 1944: VII Corps.

1 August 1944: VII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group.

16 December 1944: V Corps.

20 December 1944: Attached, with the entire First Army, to the British 21st Army Group.

26 January 1945: XVIII (Abn) Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group.

12 February 1945: III Corps.

8 March 1945: VII Corps.

27 April 1945: VIII Corps.

30 April 1945: V Corps.

6 May 1945: Third Army, 12th Army Group.


In these tabulations, the army and higher headquarters to which the division is assigned or attached is not repeated when the division is assigned or attached to a different corps in the same army.


On 6 November 1943, for example, the 1st Infantry Division was assigned to the VII Corps which was itself assigned to First Army; on 1 August 1944, the 12th Army Group became operational; and on 6 May 1945, the 1st Infantry Division left First Army for the first time during the operations on the Continent for reassignment to the Third Army.



Korean War


During the Korean War, the Big Red One was serving as an occupation force in Germany, and discouraging any Soviet designs on Europe.


In 1955 the division colors left Germany and were relocated to Fort Riley, Kansas.





The division fought in the Vietnam War from 1965 to 1970.


Arriving in July of 1965, the division began combat operations within two weeks. By the end of 1965 the Division had participated in three major operations: Hump, Bushmaster I and Bushmaster II, under the command of MG Jonathan O. Seaman.


In 1966 the division took part in Operations Marauder, Crimp II, and Rolling Stone in the early part of the year. In March, MG William E. DePuy took command. In June and July the division took part in the battles of Ap Tau O, Srok Dong and Minh Thanh Road. In November they participated in Operation Attleboro.


1967 saw the 1st I.D. in Operations Cedar Falls, Junction City, Manhattan, and Shenandoah II. MG John H. Hay assumed command in February. On October 17, 1967, the 1st I.D suffered heavy casualties at the Battle of Ong Thanh with 58 KIA.


1968 would see the division involved in the Tet Offensive, securing the massive Tan Son Nhut Air Base. In March, MG Keith L. Ware took command. That same month the division took part in Operation Quyet Thang (Resolve to Win), April would see the division participate in the largest operation in the Vietnam conflict, Operation Toan Thang (Certain Victory). On 13 September, the Division Commander, MG Ware, was killed in action when his command helicopter was shot down by hostile fire. MG Orwin C. Talbott moved up from his position of Assistant Division Commander to assume command of the Division.


In the first half of 1969, The Big Red One conducted reconnaissance-in-force and ambush operations, including a multi-divisional operation, Atlas Wedge, and participated in the Battles of An Loc. The last part of the year saw the division take part in "Dong Tien" (Progress Together) operations. These operations were intended to assist South Vietnamese forces to take a more active role in combat. In August MG A. E Milloy took command of the 1st I.D. while the division took part in battles along National Highway 13, known as "Thunder Road" to the end of the year.


In January 1970 it was announced that the division would return to Fort Riley. 11 members of the division were awarded the Medal of Honor.



3,146 Killed in Action

18,019 Wounded in Action

20 Prisoner of War



First Gulf War


The division, commanded by Major General Thomas G. Rhame, also participated in Operation Desert Storm. It was responsible for the initial breach of the Iraqi defenses, consequently rolling over the Iraqi 26th Infantry Division and taking 2,600 prisoners of war. The Big Red One continued with the subsequent 260 kilometer assault on enemy-held territory over 100 hours, engaging eleven Iraqi divisions, destroying 550 enemy tanks, 480 armored personnel carriers and taking 11,400 prisoners. By the early morning of February 28, 1991, the division had taken of position along the Highway of Death, preventing any Iraqi retreat. The division's 2nd Dagger Brigade, led by Colonel Anthony Moreno, was then tasked with securing town of Safwan, Iraq, which was to be the site for the permanent cease-fire negotioations.


In 1996 the division colors were relocated to the German city of Würzburg.





2nd (Dagger)Brigade Combat Team deployed to Bosnia as part of IFOR2 / SFOR1 from October 1996 to April 1997. 2nd Brigade was replaced by element from 3rd Brigade and 4th Brigade(AVN).


Kosovo, 1999Elements of the division, to include personnel and units from the 2nd, 3rd and 4th (Aviation) Brigades, served in Kosovo.



2003 Invasion of Iraq


Iraq, May 10, 2004As of 2004, the unit is headquartered at Leighton Barracks in Würzburg, Germany, but has been sent to Iraq, where it relieved as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF-2) the 4th Infantry Division in Sunni Areas, mainly near towns such as Tikrit, Saddam's hometown, since March 2004. The Division has been replaced by the 42d Infantry Division, New York National Guard, and has returned to its home in Germany.


On November 28, 2005, members of the 1st Infantry Division appeared on the MTV program Total Request Live with Korn, and presented the show's host, Damien with momentos of the Division's symbols.


In July, 2006 the division was withdrawn from Germany back to Fort Riley in the United States, leaving only 2nd(Dagger) Brigade in Schweinfurt, Germany. [1]



2006 Operation Iraqi Freedom '06-'08


The 2nd (Dagger) Brigade is deployed to support the "Global War On Terror", spear-headed by the 1st Batallion 26th Infantry Regiment task force, in Eastern Baghdad. The rest of the Brigade, as well as other elements from Fort Riley follow shortly after in Oct. 2006 to other areas of Iraq."


Divisional history from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._1st_Infantry_Division




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Army Green version next to a standard WWII green back. The Army Green variation was very unpopular with Big Red Oner's and was unadopted by the division shortly after it inception in 1956.







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Just to give you an update on the battle history of the Big Red One the 4IBCT is now deployed in Iraq since February of this year.

Activly Selling All Items

All eras

VERY interested in M1 helmets, WWI victory medals, and I will do almost anything for real SOG gear or uniforms.

Email or PM with offers please.

Needing; Pin back CIB, two piece CIB, ANy odd CIB's, 41st Infantry Regiment DUI (old ones), 65th AFAB DUI


Please visit my website at DM1975.com



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I bring my little brick in the wall:

Here is a 1st ID SSI, Kosovo made. These insignias 've been made during the first tour of the division in 1999 - 2000, local tailors around bases and local PX in bases have still numerous quantities!










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Here are some current Iraqi made 1st ID patches. Both are cut edge. Traditionally the 1st ID wears the red "1" when deployed, regardless of which Brigade they were with. I have notice that subdued black "1" are becoming popular with a lot of the 1st ID guys over here. The theory being that the red would give an aim point for a sniper. Of course, as it is with most stuff like this, those soldiers who rarely leave the FOB wear the subdued patch while many of those soldiers who do go outside the wire reguarly still wear the red "1" patch.



Follow me on Facebook @zemkecollectables

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This 1st Infantry Division patch was removed from a very heavily mothed 1937-dated service coat.




In Memory Of......
Pte Harold Griffiths, 1805, 1/6th Manchester Regt, KIA June 4th, 1915 in Gallipoli
Cpl Isaac Judges, 40494, 6th East Yorkshire Regt, KIA October 3rd, 1917 in Ypres
May they rest in peace.....

MSgt - USAF Retired




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