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87th Infantry Division

World War I

Saw no combat; was activated 25 August 1917, went overseas in September 1918, retained and was inactivated in January 1919.


Maj. Gen. S. D. Sturgis (25 August 1917)
Brig. Gen. R. C. Van Vliet (13 November 1917)
Maj. Gen. S. D. Sturgis (17 November 1917)
Col. John O'Shea (6 October 1918)
Maj. Gen. S. D. Sturgis (23 October 1918)
Brig. Gen. W. F. Martin (22 November 1918).

World War II

Activated: 15 December 1942.

Overseas: 17 October 1944.

Campaigns: Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, Central Europe.

Days of combat: 154.

Distinguished Unit Citations: 2.

Awards: MH-1 ; DSC-9 ; DSM-1 ; SS-364; LM-20; SM-41 ; BSM-1,542 ; AM49.


Maj. Gen. Percy W. Clarkson (December 1942-October 1943)
Maj. Gen. Eugene M. Landrum (October 1943-April 1944)
Maj. Gen. Frank L. Culin, Jr. (April 1944 to inactivation).

Returned to U. S.: 11 July 1945.

Inactivated: 20 September 1945.


Combat Chronicle

The 87th Infantry Division arrived in Scotland, 22 October 1944, and trained in England, 23 October-30 November. It landed in France, 1-3 December, and moved to Metz, where, on the 8th, it went into action against and took Fort Driant. The Division then shifted to the vicinity of Gross Rederching near the SaarGerman border on the 10th of December and captured Rimling, Obergailbach, and Guiderkirch in short order. The 87th was moving into Germany when Von Rundstedt launched his offensive in the Ardennes. The Division was placed in SHAEF reserve, 24-28 December, then thrown into the Bulge battle in Belgium, 29 December. In a fluctuating battle, it captured Moircy on the 30th and Remagne on the 31st. On 2 January 1945, it took Germont, on the 10th Tillet, and reached the Ourthe by the 13th. On 15 January 1945, the Division moved to Luxembourg to relieve the 4th Division along the Sauer and seized Wasserbillig on the 23d. The 87th moved to the vicinity of St. Vith, 28 January, and attacked and captured Schlierbach, Selz, and Hogden by the end of the month. After the fall of Neuendorf, 9 February, the Division went on the defensive until the 26th, when Ormont and Hallschlag were taken in night attacks. The 87th crossed the Kyll River, 6 March, took Dollendorf on the 8th, and after a brief rest, returned to combat, 13 March 1945, crossing the Moselle on the 16th and clearing Koblenz, 18-19 March. The Division crossed the Rhine, 25-26 March, despite strong opposition, consolidated its bridgehead, and secured Grossenlinden and Langgons. On 7 April, it jumped off in an attack which carried it through Thuringia into Saxony. Plauen fell, 17 April, and the Division took up defensive positions, 20 April May, about 4 miles from the Czech border. On 6 May 1945, it took Falkenstein and maintained its positions until VE-day.

Assignments in the ETO *

25 November 1944: Third Army, 12th Army Group.
4 December 1944: III Corps.
11 December 1944: XII Corps.
21 December 1944: XV Corps, Seventh Army, 6th Army Group.
29 December 1944: VIII Corps, Third Army, 12th Army Group.
14 January 1945: XII Corps.
25 January 1945: VIII Corps.
22 April 1945: VIII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group.


Nickname: Golden Acorn Division. Slogan: Stalwart and Strong; and Sturdy as an Oak. Shoulder patch: A golden acorn on a circular green background. Association: 87th Infantry Division Association, 1915 South Western Avenue, Los Angeles 7, Calif. (Mr. Lorrin L. Morrison). Publications: History of the 87th Infantry Division: by unit members; Army & Navy Publishing Co., Baton Rouge 1, La.; 1947. Pictorial Review; by unit members; Albert Love Enterprises, Atlanta 2, Ga.; 1944.

* See footnote, 1st Infantry Division.


[Nota Bene: These 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.]

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