FACT SHEET of the 28th INFANTRY DIVISION
(Bill Hickok) via:
The Information Section, Analisis Branch, Hq Army Ground Forces.
Washington 25 DC, 1 Mar 1947 as found in the records of the National Archives
and Record Administration, RG 407. Archives II, College Park MD.
TYPE OF DIVISION:
National Guard Troops from Pennsylvania
Keystone Division (Called the "Bloody Bucket" Division by the
"28th Roll-on" Words and Music by Sgt Emil Roab, November
A Red Keystone, symbolic of the State of Pennsylvania, known as the Keystone
State. Division was composed in 1917 of men from Pennsylvania National Guard
Division was organized in Sept. 1917 at Camp Hancock, GA. From Pennsylvania
National Guard Troops. It went overseas in May and June 1918. It participated in
the Champagne-Marne defensive and the Aisne-Marne offensive. Division's
outstanding action was in the Mouse-Argonne offensive. One of it's great
achievements was rescue of the famous "Lost Battalion" of the 77th
Infantry Division in the Argonne. During operations in the Division it
took 921 prisoners and its casualties tallied 13,980. Division
returned to the United States in spring of 1919. The 109th Infantry Regiment
orininally from Scranton PA distinguished itself in the Marne battle. The 110th
Infantry Regiment bore the full brunt of Ludendorff's "Peace Storm," a
bid to breakthrough and capture Paris. The 112 th Infantry Regiment charged over
the top at Hill 204 near Chateau Thierry. Battalion "B" of the 107th
Field Artillery Battalion has a history dated back to 1840 and was the first
unit to use the name "National Guard," an adaptation of Napoleon's
Garde Nationale. The 109th Field Artillery Battalion had three separate
companies supporting George Washington's Continental Army.
17 February 1941 at Indiantown Gap PA
13 December 1945, Camp Shelby, Mississippi.
109th, 110th, 112th Infantry Regiments, 28th Cav Rcn Tp (Mecz), 103rd Engr
Co (C) Bn, 103 Med Bn , Div. Arty, 107th , 109th and 229th ( 105 How) and 108th
(155 How) FA Bn's, Sp Tps: 28th QM Co, 28th Sig Co, 728th Ord Co. (LM), HQ Co,
MP Platoon and Band.
Division trained at Indiantown Gap, PA and in Aug 1941 went to AP Hill
Military Reservation, VA for maneuvers participated in Carolina maneuvers from
Sept to Dec. 1941. In Jan 1942 the outfit was sent to Camp
Livingston, LA. And in March came under control of Army Ground Forces and was
placed under the IV Corps of the Third Army., from Sept to Nov 1942, the 28th
took part in Third Army Maneuvers in Louisiana. From Jan to Mar 1943, the 28th
received special training in amphibious warfare at Carrabelle, Fl and was
assigned to the VII Corps of the Second Army, in Aug 1943, the Division began
almost two months of maneuvers in mountainous terrain in West Virginia after
having changed its permanent station to Camp Pickett. VA. Three combat teams
participated in amphibious training conducted by the Amphibious Force, U.S.
Atlantic Fleet, at Camp Bradford, VA.
DEPARTED U.S. FOR FOREIGN DUTY:
8 October 1943 for ETO.
Received extensive training in Wales for six months and in England for three
months. Highlight of training was at Assault Training Center, Braunton,
DATE ENTERED COMBAT:
Division 27 Jul 1944, FIRST ELEMENTS 22 Jul 1944
(Div) 196 Returned to U.S, Aug 1945 (HQ)
(Div) Normandy; Northern France; Rhineland, Ardennes, and Central
SUCCESSIVE COMMANDING GENERALS:
MG Edward Martin, Feb to Dec 1941;
MG J Garesche Ord, Jan to May 1942;
MG Omar N. Bradley, Jun 1942 to Jan 1943;
MG Lloyd Brown from Jan 1943 to Jul 1944;
BG James A. Wharton was commanding for one day in Aug 1944-While visiting a
regiment a few hours after taking command he was fatally wounded.
MG Norman D. Cota from Aug 1944 to inactivation.
CONGRESSIONAL MEDAL OF HONOR:
T/Sgt Francis J. Clark, Co K, 109th Infantry Regiment, for 12 Sept 1944
action at the OUR River near Kalborn, Luxembourg.
Fire and Movement
109th Infantry regiment awarded the French Croix de Guerre for 28 Jan to 2
Feb 1945 action in Colmar, France per French degree # 565, dated 27 Mar 1945.
From Normandy, through France, Belgium, Luxembourg and eventually into
Germany itself, the 28th Infantry Division blasted its way to success against
the enemy which referred to the Keystone unit as the " Bloody Bucket"
division That phrase described the fury of the assault which it launched shortly
after landing on the Normandy Beaches 22 Jul 1944, By 31st Jul, the 28th
was in the thick of the hedgerow fighting. Advances were at a crawling pace
while towns like Percy, Montbray, Montguoray, Gatheme and St Sever de Calvados
and Hill 210 fell. By 20th Aug, The Division was rolling eastward along
the highways of France, An advance north to the Seine to trap the remnants of
the German 7th Army saw the capture of Vernauil,Breteuil,Danville, Conchos, Le
Neubourg and Elbourf as the bag of prisoners mounted. On 29th Aug, the Division
entered Paris and paraded under battle conditions before a populace delirious
with joy. There was no time for rest, however and the advance continued on
through the forest of Compeign, La Fere, St Quentin, Laen, Rethel, Sedan,
Mezieros, Bouilion and on the 6th of Sept the crossing of the Mouse was
accomplished. The Division swept into Belgium averaging advances of 17 miles a
day against the resistance of German roadblocks and "battle groups"
The city of Arlon, Belgium fell to a task force as the Division fanned out into
Luxembourg. Combat Team 112 attached to the 5th Armored Division
Liberated the southern portion of Luxembourg and smashed its way into Germany at
Wallendorf in an attack aimed at Bitburg, Combat Team 109 and 110 liberated the
northern part of Luxembourg and on 11th Sept. entered Germany in strength.
After hammering away in assaults which destroyed or captured 153 pill boxes and
bunkers the Division moved north and cleared the Monschau Forest in an area east
of Elsenborn, Rocherath, and Krinkelt, Belgium, moving up to the Siegfried Line
again. Further attacks were postponed and the
Division made another move northward to the Hurtgen Forest. There the attack
began 2nd Nov. 1944 and the Keystoners stormed into Vossenack, Kommerscheidt and
Schmidt amid savage fighting. Losses were heavy and ground once wrested from the
enemy was lost and regained to be lost again to the ever increasing fury of his
counter-attack. By 12th Nov, the 28th had completed its Hurtgen Forest mission
and moved south to the scene of its initial entry into Germany where it held a
25 sector of the front line along the Our River from the northeastern tip
of Luxembourg to the vicinity of Wallendorf, In the sector the Germans
unleashed the full force of the winter offensive against the thinly-held and
over-extended division line. Five crack (German) divisions were hurled
across the Our River the first day to be followed by four more in the next few
days. The Keystone rocked under the overwhelming weight of enemy armor and
personnel but refused to become panic stricken. The defense by the Division
against Von Runstedt's assault was was termed by one correspondent as one of the
greatest feats in the history of the American Army. By the time that the 28th
was relieved it had thrown the German Timetable completely off schedule
and had inflicted heavy losses on the enemy. During early Jan 1945, the Division
was charged with the defense of the Meuse River from Givet, Belgium to Verdun
France. Later that month a move to the south to Alsace was made. There the 28th
had the experience of serving in the French First Army in the reduction of
the "Colmar Pocket" and to it went the honor of capturing Colmar, the
last major French City in German hands. Further advances to the east across the
L'III River and Rhino-Rhono Canal to the west bank of the Rhine followed. By
23rd Feb, the Division had returned north to the American First Army and was in
the line along the Olef River. March 6th was the jumping-off date in an attack
which carried the Keystone to the Ahr River. Schlieden, Gomunf,Kall,
Sotenich, Sistig and Blankonheim all fell in a rapid advance . Many prisoners
and large stores of enemy weapons, equip[ment and ammunition were taken. The
Rhine was crossed and an area south of the "Ruhr Pocket" occupied
by the 28th awaiting a southward drive by the German forces trapped in the
pocket. Early in April the Division moved west of the Rhine and took up
occupation duties in the area north of Aachen along the Holland-German border.
Two weeks later came a move to the permanent occupation area. The Saarland
and Rhonish Palatinate Early in July the Division started redeployment to the
United States, reassembled at Camp Shelby, Mississippi and was inactivated on 12