The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
United States Military Academy
The United States Military Academy known as West Point, Army West Point, The Academy, or The Point, is a four-year federal service academy in West Point, New York. It was established as a fort that sits on strategic high ground overlooking the Hudson River with a scenic view, 50 miles north of New York City, it is one of the five U. S. service academies. The Academy traces its roots to 1801, when President Thomas Jefferson directed, shortly after his inauguration, that plans be set in motion to establish the United States Military Academy at West Point; the entire central campus is a national landmark and home to scores of historic sites and monuments. The majority of the campus's Norman-style buildings are constructed from black granite; the campus is a popular tourist destination, with a visitor center and the oldest museum in the United States Army. Candidates for admission must both apply directly to the academy and receive a nomination from a member of Congress or Delegate/Resident Commissioner in the case of Washington, D.
C. Puerto Rico, Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, the Virgin Islands. Other nomination sources include the Vice President of the United States. Students are officers-in-training and are referred to as "cadets" or collectively as the "United States Corps of Cadets". Tuition for cadets is funded by the Army in exchange for an active duty service obligation upon graduation. 1,300 cadets enter the Academy each July, with about 1,000 cadets graduating. The academic program grants a bachelor of science degree with a curriculum that grades cadets' performance upon a broad academic program, military leadership performance, mandatory participation in competitive athletics. Cadets are required to adhere to the Cadet Honor Code, which states that "a cadet will not lie, steal, or tolerate those who do." The academy bases a cadet's leadership experience as a development of all three pillars of performance: academics and military. Most graduates are commissioned as second lieutenants in the Army. Foreign cadets are commissioned into the armies of their home countries.
Since 1959, cadets have been eligible for an interservice commission, a commission in one of the other armed services, provided they meet that service's eligibility standards. Most years, a small number of cadets do this; the academy's traditions have influenced other institutions because of unique mission. It was the first American college to have an accredited civil-engineering program and the first to have class rings, its technical curriculum was a model for engineering schools. West Point's student body has lexicon. All cadets dine together en masse on weekdays for breakfast and lunch; the academy fields fifteen men's and nine women's National Collegiate Athletic Association sports teams. Cadets compete in one sport every fall and spring season at the intramural, club, or intercollegiate level, its football team was a national power in the early and mid-20th century, winning three national championships. Its alumni and students are collectively referred to as "The Long Gray Line" and its ranks include two Presidents of the United States, presidents of Costa Rica and the Philippines, numerous famous generals, seventy-six Medal of Honor recipients.
The Continental Army first occupied West Point, New York, on 27 January 1778, it is the oldest continuously operating Army post in the United States. Between 1778 and 1780, the Polish engineer and military hero Tadeusz Kościuszko oversaw the construction of the garrison defenses; the Great Hudson River Chain and high ground above the narrow "S" curve in the river enabled the Continental Army to prevent British Royal Navy ships from sailing upriver and thus dividing the Colonies. While the fortifications at West Point were known as Fort Arnold during the war, as commander, Benedict Arnold committed his act of treason, attempting to sell the fort to the British. After Arnold betrayed the patriot cause, the Army changed the name of the fortifications at West Point, New York, to Fort Clinton. With the peace after the American Revolutionary War, various ordnance and military stores were left deposited at West Point. After the Continental Army was disbanded 1783, West Point was the only place in the newly formed United States to have active military personel, 80 in total, until Legion of the United States was established in 1792."Cadets" underwent training in artillery and engineering studies at the garrison since 1794.
In 1801, shortly after his inauguration as president, Thomas Jefferson directed that plans be set in motion to establish at West Point the United States Military Academy. He selected Jonathan Williams to serve as its first superintendent. Congress formally authorized the establishment and funding of the school with the Military Peace Establishment Act of 1802, which Jefferson signed on 16 March; the academy commenced operations on 4 July 1802. The academy graduated Joseph Gardner Swift, its first official graduate, in October 1802, he returned as Superintendent from 1812 to 1814. In its tumultuous early years, the academy featured few standards for length of study. Cadets attended between 6 months to 6 years; the impending War of 1812 caused the United States Congress to authorize a more formal system of education at the academy and increased the size of the Corps of Cadets to 250. In 1817, Colonel Sylvanus Thayer became the Superintendent and established the curriculum, elements of which are still in use as of 2015.
Thayer instilled strict disciplinary
The Berlin Blockade was one of the first major international crises of the Cold War. During the multinational occupation of post–World War II Germany, the Soviet Union blocked the Western Allies' railway and canal access to the sectors of Berlin under Western control; the Soviets offered to drop the blockade if the Western Allies withdrew the newly introduced Deutsche Mark from West Berlin. The Western Allies organised the Berlin airlift to carry supplies to the people of West Berlin, a difficult feat given the size of the city's population. Aircrews from the United States Air Force, the Royal Air Force, the French Air Force, the Royal Canadian Air Force, the Royal Australian Air Force, the Royal New Zealand Air Force, the South African Air Force flew over 200,000 sorties in one year, providing to the West Berliners up to 12,941 tons of necessities in a day, such as fuel and food, with the original plan being to lift 3,475 tons of supplies. However, by the end of the airlift, that number was met twofold.
The Soviets did not disrupt the airlift for fear this might lead to open conflict though they far outnumbered the allies in Germany and Berlin. By the spring of 1949, the airlift was succeeding, by April it was delivering more cargo than had been transported into the city by rail. On 12 May 1949, the USSR lifted the blockade of West Berlin, although for a time the U. S. U. K and France continued to supply the city by air anyway because they were worried that the Soviets were going to resume the blockade and were only trying to disrupt western supply lines; the Berlin Blockade served to highlight the competing ideological and economic visions for postwar Europe and was the first major multinational skirmish of the cold war. From July 17 to August 2, 1945, the victorious Allies reached the Potsdam Agreement on the fate of postwar Europe, calling for the division of defeated Germany into four temporary occupation zones; these zones were located around the then-current locations of the allied armies.
Divided into occupation zones, Berlin was located 100 miles inside Soviet-controlled eastern Germany. The United States, United Kingdom, France controlled western portions of the city, while Soviet troops controlled the eastern sector. In the eastern zone, the Soviet authorities forcibly unified the Communist Party of Germany and Social Democratic Party in the Socialist Unity Party, claiming at the time that it would not have a Marxist–Leninist or Soviet orientation; the SED leaders called for the "establishment of an anti-fascist, democratic regime, a parliamentary democratic republic" while the Soviet Military Administration suppressed all other political activities. Factories, technicians and skilled personnel were removed to the Soviet Union. In a June 1945 meeting, Stalin informed German communist leaders that he expected to undermine the British position within their occupation zone, that the United States would withdraw within a year or two and that nothing would stand in the way of a united Germany under communist control within the Soviet orbit.
Stalin and other leaders told visiting Bulgarian and Yugoslavian delegations in early 1946 that Germany must be both Soviet and communist. A further factor contributing to the Blockade was that there had never been a formal agreement guaranteeing rail and road access to Berlin through the Soviet zone. At the end of the war, western leaders had relied on Soviet goodwill to provide them with access. At that time, the western allies assumed that the Soviets' refusal to grant any cargo access other than one rail line, limited to ten trains per day, was temporary, but the Soviets refused expansion to the various additional routes that were proposed; the Soviets granted only three air corridors for access to Berlin from Hamburg, Bückeburg, Frankfurt. In 1946 the Soviets stopped delivering agricultural goods from their zone in eastern Germany, the American commander, Lucius D. Clay, responded by stopping shipments of dismantled industries from western Germany to the Soviet Union. In response, the Soviets started a public relations campaign against American policy and began to obstruct the administrative work of all four zones of occupation.
Until the blockade began in 1948, the Truman Administration had not decided whether American forces should remain in West Berlin after the establishment of a West German government, planned for 1949. Berlin became the focal point of both US and Soviet efforts to re-align Europe to their respective visions; as Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov noted, "What happens to Berlin, happens to Germany. Berlin had suffered enormous damage. After harsh treatment, forced emigration, political repression and the hard winter of 1945–1946, Germans in the Soviet-controlled zone were hostile to Soviet endeavours. Local elections in 1946 resulted in a massive anti-communist protest vote in the Soviet sector of Berlin. Berlin's citizens overwhelmingly elected non-Communist members to its city government. Meanwhile, to coordinate the economies of the British and United States occupation zones, these were combined on 1 January 1947 into what was referred to as the Bizone. After March 1946 the British zonal advisory board was established, with representatives of the states, the central offices, political parties, trade unions, consumer organisations.
As indicated by its name, the zonal advisory board had no legislative p
George Armstrong Custer
George Armstrong Custer was a United States Army officer and cavalry commander in the American Civil War and the American Indian Wars. Custer graduated from West Point in 1861, bottom of his class, but as the Civil War was just starting, trained officers were in immediate demand, he worked with General McClellan and the future General Pleasonton, who both recognised his qualities as a cavalry leader, he was brevetted brigadier general of Volunteers at age 23. At Gettysburg, he commanded the Michigan Cavalry Brigade, defeated Jeb Stuart’s assault on Cemetery Ridge, while outnumbered. In 1864, Custer served in the Overland Campaign and in Sheridan’s army in the Shenandoah Valley, defeating Jubal Early at Cedar Creek, his division blocked Lee's final retreat and received the first flag of truce from the Confederates, Custer being present at Lee’s surrender to U. S. Grant at Appomattox. After the war, Custer was appointed a lieutenant colonel in the Regular Army, sent west to fight in the Indian Wars.
On June 25, 1876, while leading the 7th Cavalry at the Battle of the Little Bighorn in Montana Territory against a coalition of Native American tribes, he was killed along with over one third of his command during an action romanticized as "Custer's Last Stand". His dramatic end was as controversial as the rest of his career, his legacy remains divided, his bold leadership in battle is unquestioned, but his legend was of his own fabrication, through his extensive journalism, more through his wife’s energetic lobbying throughout her long widowhood. Custer's paternal immigrant ancestors and Gertrude Küster, emigrated to the North American English colonies around 1693 from the Rhineland in Germany among thousands of Palatine refugees whose passage was arranged by the English government to gain settlers in New York and Pennsylvania. According to family letters, Custer was named after George Armstrong, a minister, in his devout mother's hope that her son might join the clergy. Custer was born in New Rumley, Ohio, to Emanuel Henry Custer, a farmer and blacksmith, his second wife, Marie Ward Kirkpatrick, of English and Scots-Irish descent.
He had two younger brothers and Boston. His other full siblings were the family's youngest child, Margaret Custer, Nevin Custer, who suffered from asthma and rheumatism. Custer had three older half-siblings. Custer and his brothers acquired their life-long love of practical jokes, which they played out among the close family members. Emanuel Custer was an outspoken Democrat who taught his children politics and toughness at an early age. In a February 3, 1887 letter to his son's widow, Libby, he related an incident "when Autie was about four years old, he had to have a tooth drawn, he was much afraid of blood. When I took him to the doctor to have the tooth pulled, it was in the night and I told him if it bled well it would get well right away, he must be a good soldier; when he got to the doctor he took his seat, the pulling began. The forceps slipped off and he had to make a second trial, he pulled it out, Autie never scrunched. Going home, I led him by the arm, he jumped and skipped, said'Father you and me can whip all the Whigs in Michigan.'
I thought, saying a good deal but I did not contradict him." In order to attend school, Custer lived with an older half-sister and her husband in Monroe, Michigan. Before entering the United States Military Academy, Custer attended the McNeely Normal School known as Hopedale Normal College, in Hopedale, Ohio, it was to train teachers for elementary schools. While attending Hopedale and classmate William Enos Emery were known to have carried coal to help pay for their room and board. After graduating from McNeely Normal School in 1856, Custer taught school in Ohio, his first sweetheart was Mary Jane Holland. Custer entered West Point as a cadet on July 1, 1857, as a member of the class of 1862, his class numbered seventy-nine cadets embarking on a five-year course of study. With the outbreak of the American Civil War in 1861, the course was shortened to four years, Custer and his class graduated on June 24, 1861, he was 34th in a class of 34 graduates: 23 classmates had dropped out for academic reasons while 22 classmates had resigned to join the Confederacy.
Throughout his life, Custer tested rules. In his four years at West Point, he amassed a record-total of 726 demerits, one of the worst conduct records in the history of the academy. A fellow cadet recalled Custer as declaring there were only two places in a class, the head and the foot, since he had no desire to be the head, he aspired to be the foot. A roommate noted, "It was alright with George Custer. Under ordinary national conditions, Custer's low class rank would result in an obscure posting, but Custer had the "fortune" to graduate as the Civil War broke out. All officers were needed. Like the other graduates, Custer was commissioned as a second lieutenant. S. Cavalry Regiment and tasked with drilling volunteers in Washington, D. C. On July 21, 1861, he was with his regiment at the First Battle of Bull Run during the Manassas Campaign, where Army commander Winfield Scott detailed him to carry messages to Major General Irvin McDowell. After the battle, Custer continued participating in the defenses of Washington D.
C. until October, when he became ill. He was absent from his unit until February 1862. In March, he participated with the 2nd Cavalry in the Peninsula Campaign in Virginia until April 4. On April 5, Custer s
Ulysses S. Grant
Ulysses S. Grant was an American soldier and international statesman, who served as the 18th president of the United States from 1869 to 1877. During the American Civil War Grant led the Union Army as its commanding general to victory over the Confederacy with the supervision of President Abraham Lincoln. During the Reconstruction Era, President Grant led the Republicans in their efforts to remove the vestiges of Confederate nationalism and slavery. From early childhood in Ohio, Grant was a skilled equestrian, he served with distinction in the Mexican -- American War. Upon his return, Grant married Julia Dent, together they had four children. In 1854, Grant abruptly resigned from the army, he and his family struggled financially in civilian life for seven years. When the Civil War broke out in 1861, Grant joined the Union Army and rose in rank to general. Grant was persistent in his pursuit of the Confederate enemy, winning major battles and gaining Union control of the Mississippi River. In March 1864, President Abraham Lincoln promoted Grant to Lieutenant General, a rank reserved for George Washington.
For over a year Grant's Army of the Potomac fought the Army of Northern Virginia led by Robert E. Lee in the Overland Campaign and at Petersburg. On April 9, 1865, Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox, the war ended. On April 14, 1865, Lincoln was assassinated. Grant continued his service under Lincoln's successor President Andrew Johnson and was promoted General of the Army in 1866. Disillusioned by Johnson's conservative approach to Reconstruction, Grant drifted toward the "Radical" Republicans. Elected the youngest 19th Century president in 1868, Grant stabilized the post-war national economy, created the Department of Justice, prosecuted the Ku Klux Klan, he appointed Jewish-Americans to prominent federal offices. In 1871, Grant created the first Civil Service Commission; the Democrats and Liberal Republicans united behind Grant's opponent in the presidential election of 1872, but Grant was handily re-elected. Grant's new Peace Policy for Native Americans had both failures. Grant's administration resolved the Alabama claims and the Virginius Affair, but Congress rejected his Dominican annexation initiative.
Grant's presidency was plagued by numerous public scandals, while the Panic of 1873 plunged the nation into a severe economic depression. After Grant left office in March 1877, he embarked on a two-and-a-half-year world tour that captured favorable global attention for him and the United States. In 1880, Grant was unsuccessful in obtaining the Republican presidential nomination for a third term. In the final year of his life, facing severe investment reversals and dying of throat cancer, he wrote his memoirs, which proved to be a major critical and financial success. At the time of his death, he was memorialized as a symbol of national unity. Historical assessments of Grant's legacy have varied over the years. Historians have hailed Grant's military genius, his strategies are featured in military history textbooks. Stigmatized by multiple scandals, Grant's presidency has traditionally been ranked among the worst. Modern scholars have shown greater appreciation for his achievements that included civil rights enforcement and has raised his historical reputation.
Grant has been regarded as an embattled president who performed a difficult job during Reconstruction. Hiram Ulysses Grant was born in Point Pleasant, Ohio, on April 27, 1822, to Jesse Root Grant, a tanner and merchant, Hannah Grant, his ancestors Matthew and Priscilla Grant arrived aboard the ship Mary and John at Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1630. Grant's great-grandfather fought in the French and Indian War, his grandfather, served in the American Revolution at Bunker Hill. Afterward, Noah married Rachel Kelley, the daughter of an Irish pioneer, their son Jesse was a fervent abolitionist. Jesse Grant found work as a foreman in a tannery, he soon met his future wife and the two were married on June 24, 1821. Ten months Hannah gave birth to their first child, a son. At a family gathering several weeks the boy's name, was drawn from ballots placed in a hat. Wanting to honor his father-in-law, who had suggested Hiram, Jesse declared the boy to be Hiram Ulysses, though he would always refer to him as Ulysses.
In 1823, the family moved to Georgetown, where five more siblings were born: Simpson, Orvil and Mary. At the age of five, Ulysses began his formal education, starting at a subscription school and in two private schools. In the winter of 1836–1837, Grant was a student at Maysville Seminary, in the autumn of 1838, he attended John Rankin's academy. In his youth, Grant developed an unusual ability to manage horses. Since Grant expressed a strong dislike for the tannery his father put his ability with horses to use by giving him work driving wagon loads of supplies and transporting people. Unlike his siblings, Grant was not forced to attend church by his Methodist parents. For the rest of his life, he prayed and never joined any denomination. To others, including late in life, his own son, Grant appeared to be an agnostic, he inherited some of Hannah's Methodist quiet nature. Grant was apolitical before the war but wrote, "If I had had any political sympathies they would have been with the Whigs. I was raised in that school."
Grant's father wrote to Representative Thomas L. Hamer requesting that he nominate Ulysses to the United States
8th Armored Division (United States)
The 8th Armored Division was an armored division of the United States Army that served in the European Theater of World War II. The successes of the German armored units in Poland and France underscored America's need for an effective armored force; the tank battles of North Africa and Russia in early 1942 caused the US Army to recognize the need to drastically increase the number of its armored units. The 8th Armored Division was activated on 1 April 1942 at Fort Knox, with "surplus" units of the recently-reorganized 4th Armored Division and newly-organized units; the division served as the first official military guardian of the gold vault at Fort Knox. From 1942 to 1944 it functioned as a training command stationed at Louisiana. During this period the 8th supplied trained personnel to the 9th through 14th Armored Divisions. In September 1943 the division completed reorganization from the old style triangular division to the new'light' armored division, as per War Department Letter AG-322, in preparation for activation as a combat unit.
The light format armored division was made up of three combat commands referred to as Combat Command A, Combat Command B and a smaller unit called Combat Command Reserve. Units could be assigned to one of the combat commands at need, creating a flexible formation. During December 1943, the division participated in the D Series of exercises in Texas; the D Series were small scale maneuver problems designed as a precursor to the full scale Sixth Louisiana Maneuver Period. The D Series included exercises to simulate contact with the enemy and included recon, movement to contact and minefield clearing problems; the 8th completed the D Series and participated in the Sixth Louisiana Maneuver Period from February through April 1944 as part of the Red Force. From the period of April through October 1944, the division conducted post-maneuver training, losing a number of trained personnel to other units and absorbing and training their replacements. At the end of October the 8th received movement orders to Camp Kilmer, New York in preparation for shipment overseas.
On 6 November 1944 the division left Camp Kilmer and boarded ships in New Jersey for the United Kingdom. The ships arrived in Southampton on 18 November and the division moved to Tidworth Camp, joining the newly formed Fifteenth Army. After some additional training and acquisition of new equipment at Tidworth, the 8th Armored Division landed in France, 5 January 1945, at Le Havre and Rouen; the division assembled in the Bacqueville area of upper Normandy as part of the still secret Fifteenth Army and was placed in reserve. In mid-January the division was seconded to the Third Army and raced 350 miles across France through heavy snow and ice to Pont-à-Mousson to help stem the German drive for Strasbourg, part of the German Operation Nordwind It was at this point that the division was assigned the call-sign'Tornado'. A detachment of the 88th Armored Cavalry undertook the division's first combat action – a reconnaissance of the best route to contact with the enemy; the division, finding the enemy halted and beginning to fall back, took part in the Third Army drive against the Moselle-Saar salient.
The 8th supported the 94th Infantry Division's attack on Nennig and Sinz, 19–28 January 1945 aimed at reducing the salient between the Saar and Moselle Rivers. Nennig and Berg were defended by elements of the German 11th Panzer Division. German losses in action against 8th Armored units were 5 Panzer IV tanks, 72 prisoners and many dead and wounded. 8th Armored losses were 4 Halftracks and heavy personnel casualties. From Berg, the 8th continued their advance through more heavy fighting. German losses were 1 anti-aircraft gun, 1 anti-tank gun and 1 halftrack. Division losses were an additional 6 tanks destroyed and 4 disabled as well as heavy personnel casualties; the week's action resulted in the loss of 50% of the personnel the 110th and 111th Panzer-Grenadier Divisions had brought into the Saar-Moselle triangle. The division moved to Simpelveld, the Netherlands for rest and refitting absorbing 200 replacements; the 8th was now part of the Ninth Army and continued refitting and replacing losses during the first half of February 1945.
On 19 February the division moved to Roermond, the Netherlands to relieve the British 7th Armoured Division in the vicinity of Echt and launched a diversionary attack as part of Operation Grenade, pushing the enemy north of the Heide woods and east of the Roer River. On 27 February, 8th Armored crossed the Roer River via the Hilfarth Bridge, captured by the 35th Infantry Division. CCA headed for the town of Wegberg. CCB moved through Sittard, Geilenkirchen and Brachelen to arrive at the Hilfarth Bridge and crossed after CCA. CCA tanks and infantry destroyed fifteen pillboxes, captured Tetelrath, crossed the Schwalm river while CCB attacked and captured the towns of Arsbeck and Ober Kruchten. On 2 March – CCA captured Lobberich, moved through the 35th Inf. Div. and secured the town of Wachtendonk at the confluence of Niers River and Nette River. Co. C of the 53rd Engineers worked through the night to bridge the Niers River, holding up the advance on Moers.3 March CCB moved through CCA area and captured Aldekerk while CCR captured Saint Hubert and Saelhuysen in their advance toward Moers.
The Division received orders to cease forward movement as it was'pinched out' by the 35th Inf. on the right and the 84th Inf. on the left. CCB was assigned to the 35th Inf. Div. so an attack could be mounted in the direction of Rheinberg and Wesel to prevent the Germans from crossing the Rhine River
Distinguished Service Cross (United States)
The Distinguished Service Cross is the second highest military award that can be given to a member of the United States Army, for extreme gallantry and risk of life in actual combat with an armed enemy force. Actions that merit the Distinguished Service Cross must be of such a high degree that they are above those required for all other U. S. combat do not meet the criteria for the Medal of Honor. The Distinguished Service Cross is equivalent to the Navy Cross, the Air Force Cross, the Coast Guard Cross; the Distinguished Service Cross was first awarded during World War I. In addition, a number of awards were made for actions before World War I. In many cases, these were to soldiers who had received a Certificate of Merit for gallantry which, at the time, was the only other honor for gallantry the Army could award, or recommend a Medal of Honor. Others were belated recognition of actions in the Philippines, during the Boxer Rebellion and on the Mexican Border; the Distinguished Service Cross is distinct from the Distinguished Service Medal, awarded to persons in recognition of exceptionally meritorious service to the government of the United States in a duty of great responsibility.
The Distinguished Service Cross is only awarded for actions in combat, while the Distinguished Service Medal has no such restriction. A cross of bronze, 2 inches high and 1 13⁄16 inches wide with an eagle on the center and a scroll below the eagle bearing the inscription "FOR VALOR". On the reverse side, the center of the cross is circled by a wreath with a space for engraving the name of the recipient; the service ribbon is 1 3⁄8 inches wide and consists of the following stripes: 1⁄8 inch Old Glory Red 67156. The Distinguished Service Cross is awarded to a person who, while serving in any capacity with the Army, distinguishes himself or herself by extraordinary heroism not justifying the award of a Medal of Honor; the act or acts of heroism must have been so notable and have involved risk of life so extraordinary as to set the individual apart from his or her comrades. The following are authorized components of the Distinguished Service Cross: Decoration: MIL-D-3943/4. NSN 8455-00-269-5745 for decoration set.
NSN 8455-00-246-3827 for individual replacement medal. Decoration: MIL-D-3943/4. NSN 8455-00-996-50007. Ribbon: MIL-R-11589/50. NSN 8455-00-252-9919. Lapel Button: MIL-L-11484/1. NSN 8455-00-253-0808. Additional awards of the Army's Distinguished Service Cross are denoted with oak leaf clusters; the Distinguished Service Cross was established by President Woodrow Wilson on January 2, 1918. General Pershing, Commander-in-Chief of the Expeditionary Forces in France, had recommended that recognition other than the Medal of Honor be authorized for the Armed Forces of the United States for valorous service rendered in like manner to that awarded by the European Armies; the request for establishment of the medal was forwarded from the Secretary of War to the President in a letter dated December 28, 1917. The Act of Congress establishing this award, dated July 9, 1918, is contained in 10 U. S. C. § 3742. The establishment of the Distinguished Service Cross was promulgated in War Department General Order No.
6, dated January 12, 1918. The Distinguished Service Cross was designed by J. Andre Smith, an artist employed by the United States Army during World War I; the Distinguished Service Cross was first cast and manufactured by the United States Mint at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The die was cast from the approved design prepared by Captain Aymar E. Embury II, Engineers Officer Reserve Corps. Upon examination of the first medals struck at the Mint, it was considered advisable to make certain minor changes to add to the beauty and the attractiveness of the medal. Due to the importance of the time element involved in furnishing the decorations to General Pershing, one hundred of the medals were struck from the original design; these medals were furnished with the provision that these crosses be replaced when the supply of the second design was accomplished. 10 U. S. C. § 3991 provides for a 10% increase in retired pay for enlisted personnel who have retired with more than 20 years of service if they have been awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.
Order of precedence and wear of decorations is contained in Army Regulation 670-1. Policy for awards, approving authority and issue of decorations is contained in AR 600-8-22. During World War I, 6,309 awards of the Distinguished Service Cross were made to 6,185 recipients. Several dozen Army soldiers, as well as eight marines and two French Army officers, received two Distinguished Service Crosses. A handful Air Service aviators, were decorated three or more times. Eddie Rickenbacker, the top U. S. ace of the war, was awarded a record eight Distinguished Service Crosses, one of, upgraded to the Medal of Honor, while flying with the 94th Aero Squadron. Fellow aviators Douglas Campbell of the 94th, Frank O'Driscoll "Monk" Hunter of the 103rd Aero Squadron each received five. Another 94th aviator, Reed McKinley Chambers, was awarded four Distinguished Service Crosses. Three aviators received three Di