[Webmaster Note: The following division information is reproduced
from the public domain publication, The Army Almanac: A Book of
Facts Concerning the Army of the United States, U.S. Government Printing Office,
1950. Portions of the information may be out of date. Only minor formatting changes and
typographical corrections have been made.]
World War I
Activated: September 1917.
Overseas: June 1918.
Major Operations: Designated a depot division; supplied over 195,000 officers
and enlisted men as replacements in France. Certain division units saw
Commanders: Maj. Gen. Edwin F. Glenn (25 August 1917),
Brig. Gen. Frederick Perkins (13 January 1918),
Brig. Gen. Willard A. Holbrook (23 March 1918),
Maj. Gen. Edwin F. Glenn (3 April 1918).
Inactivated: October 1919.
World War II
Activated: 15 August 1942.
Overseas: 6 April 1944.
Campaigns: Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, Central Europe.
Days of combat: 244.
Distinguished Unit Citations: 7.
Awards: MH-1; DSC-7; DSM-1; SS-710; LM-11; SM-25; BSM-6,294; AM-110.
Commanders: Maj. Gen. Frank W. Milburn (August 1942-December 1943),
Maj. Gen. Robert C. Macon (January 1944-31 January 1946).
Returned to U.S.: 26 March 1946.
Inactivated: 5 April 1946.
The 83rd Infantry Division arrived in England on 16 April 1944. After training in
Wales, the Division landed at Omaha Beach, 18 June 1944, and entered the hedgerow
struggle south of Carentan, 27 June. Taking the offensive, the 83rd reached the
St. Lo-Periers Road, 25 July, and advanced 8 miles against strong opposition as
the Normandy campaign ended. After a period of training, elements of the Division
took Chateauneuf, 5 August, and Dinard, 7 August, and approached the heavily fortified
area protecting St. Malo. Intense fighting reduced enemy strong points and a combined
attack against the Citadel Fortress of St. Servan caused its surrender, 17 August. While
elements moved south to protect the north bank of the Loire River, the main body of
the Division concentrated south of Rennes for patrolling and reconnaissance
activities. Elements reduced the garrison at Ile de Cezembre, which surrendered,
2 September. The movement into Luxembourg was completed on 25 September. Taking
Remich on the 28th and patrolling defensively along the Moselle, the 83rd resisted
counterattacks and advanced to Siegfried Line defenses across the Sauer after
capturing Grevenmacher and Echternach, 7 October. As the initial movement in
operation "Unicorn," the Division took Le Stromberg Hill in the vicinity of
Basse Konz against strong opposition, 5 November, and beat off counterattacks. Moving
to the Hurtgen Forest, the 83rd thrust forward from Gressenich to the west bank
of the Roer. It entered the Battle of the Bulge, 27 December, striking at
Rochefort and reducing the enemy salient in a bitter struggle. The Division
moved back to Belgium and Holland for rehabilitation and training, 22 January 1945. On
1 March, the 83rd advanced toward the Rhine in the operation "Grenade," and
captured Neuss. The west bank of the Rhine from North of Oberkassell to the
Erft Canal was cleared and defensive positions established by 2 March and
the Division renewed its training. The 83rd crossed the Rhine south of
Wesel, 29 March, and advanced across the Munster Plain to the Weser, crossing
it at Bodenwerder. As opposition disintegrated, Halle fell on 6 April. The
Division crossed the Leine, 8 April, and attacked to the east, pushing over
the Harz Mountain region and advancing to the Elbe at Barby. That city was
taken on the 13th. The 83rd established a bridgehead over the river but
evacuated the area to the Russians on 6 May 1945.
Assignments in the ETO
8 April 1944: VIII Corps, Third Army. // 25 June 1944: Third Army, but attached to the
VIII Corps of First Army. // 1 July 1944: VII Corps. // 15 July 1944: VIII
Corps. // 1 August 1944: XV Corps, Third Army, 12th Army
Group. // 3 August 1944: VIII Corps. // 5 September 1944: VIII Corps, Ninth
Army, 12th Army Group. // 10 September 1944: Ninth Army, 12th Army
Group. // 21 September 1944: Third Army, 12th Army Group. //
11 October 1944: VIII Corps, Ninth Army, 12th Army Group. //
22 October 1944: VIII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group. //
8 November 1944: Third Army, 12th Army Group. //
11 November 1944: VIII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group. //
7 December 1944: VII Corps. 20 December 1944: Attached, with the entire
First Army, to the British 21st Army Group. // 22 December 1944: XIX
Corps, Ninth Army (attached to the British 21st Army Group). //
26 December 1944: VII Corps, First Army (attached to British 21st Army
Group), 12th Army Group. // 16 February 1945: XIX Corps, Ninth Army, 12th
Army Group. // 8 May 1945: XIII Corps.
Nicknames: Thunderbolt Division, and Ohio.
Shoulder patch: A black isosceles triangle with its vertex pointed
downward in the center of which, within a gold circle,
appear the letters "O," "H," "I," and "O," in a monogram pattern.
Publications: The Thunderbolt Across Europe; by Maj. Gen. Robert C. Macon;
F. Bruckmann, KG Printing Co., Munich, Germany; distributor, The
Infantry Journal, Washington, D.C.; 1945. The Thunderbolt Across
Europe: A History of the 83rd Infantry Division, 1942-45; edited
by C. D. Philos and Ernie Hayhow, Washington, D.C.; Infantry Journal Press; 119 pp.
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