2nd Infantry Division, U.S. Army Divisions of World War II


Name:2nd
Type:Infantry
Nickname:Indian Head
Source:Regular Army
Theater: European
Casualties:16,795
Days of Combat:303
Activation Date:26 Oct 17
Date Sent Overseas:18 Oct 43 (UK)
Date Entered Combat:8 Jun 44 (Normandy)
Status June 1946:active Fort Lewis, Washington
Other Wars:WW I, Korea, Iraq
Commanding General(s): Maj. Gen. John C. H. Lee    (Nov 41 - May 42)
Maj. Gen. Walter M. Robertson    (May 42 - Jun 45)
Brig. Gen. W. K. Harrison    (Jun 45 - Sep 45)
Maj. Gen. Edward M. Almond    (Sep 45 - Jun 46)
 
Campaign(s): Normandy    (6 Jun 44 - 24 Jul 44)
Northern France    (25 Jul 44 - 14 Sep 44)
Rhineland    (15 Sep 44 - 21 Mar 45)
Ardennes-Alsace    (16 Dec 44 - 25 Jan 45)
Central Europe    (22 Mar 45 - 11 May 45)

Brief History:

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. Lo. With the hill taken 11 July 1944, the Division went on the defensive until 26 July. Exploiting the St. Lo 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 19-26 September before moving to defensive positions at St. Vith. 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, 4 March. Reaching the Rhine 9 March, the 2d advanced south to take Breisig, 10-11 March, and to guard the Remagen bridge, 12-20 March. The Division crossed the Rhine 21 March and advanced to Hadamar and Limburg, relieving elements of the 9th Armored Division, 28 March. Advancing rapidly in the wake of the 9th Armored, the 2d Division crossed the Weser at Veckerhagen, 6-7 April, captured. Gottingen 8 April, established a bridgehead across the Saale, 14 April, seizing Merseburg on the 15th. On the 18th 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Division took Leipzig, mopped up in the area, and outposted the Mulde River; elements which had crossed the river were withdrawn 24 April.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, 1-3 May, to positions along the GermanCzech border near Schonsee and Waldmunchen, and attacked in the general direction of Pilsen, reaching that city as the war in Europe ended.

Notes:
Activation date is the date the division was activated or inducted into federal service (national guard units).
Casualties are number of killed, wounded in action, captured, and missing.
Other Wars are the wars in which the division was mobilized.
The dates after the campaign name are the dates of the campaign not of the division.

Sources: The Army Almanac: A Book of Facts Concerning the Army of the United States; , U.S. Government Printing Office. Army Battle Casualties and Nonbattle Deaths in World War II, Final Report, 1 December 1941 - 31 December 1946.


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