Harman Patil (Editor)

89th Infantry Division (United States)

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Active  1917–19 1942–45
Branch  United States Army
Size  Division
Country  United States
Type  Infantry
Nickname(s)  "The Rolling W"
89th Infantry Division (United States)

The 89th Infantry Division, known as the "Rolling W," was an infantry unit of the United States Army that was activated for service in World War I and World War II.


World War I

  • Activated: August 1917.
  • Overseas: June 1918.
  • Major Operations: St. Mihiel, Meuse-Argonne.
  • Casualties: Total-7,091 (KIA-980; WIA-6,111).
  • Commanders: Maj. Gen. Leonard Wood (27 August 1917), Brig. Gen. Frank L. Winn (26 November 1917), Brig. Gen. Thomas G. Hanson (24 December 1917), Brig. Gen. Frank L. Winn (29 December 1917), Maj. Gen. Leonard Wood (12 April 1918), Brig. Gen. Frank L. Winn (1 June 1918), Maj. Gen. William M. Wright (6 September 1918), Maj. Gen. Frank L. Winn (12 November 1918), Maj. Gen. Charles Clarendon Ballou (19 November 1918).
  • Inactivated: May 1919.
  • See also

  • Charles Denver Barger - Medal of Honor recipient
  • David B. Barkley - Medal of Honor recipient
  • Marcellus Holmes Chiles - Medal of Honor recipient
  • M. Waldo Hatler - Medal of Honor recipient
  • J. Hunter Wickersham - Medal of Honor recipient
  • Jesse N. Funk - Medal of Honor recipient
  • Harold A. Furlong – Medal of Honor recipient
  • Charles E. Kilbourne - Distinguished Service Cross recipient
  • Marcelino Serna - the most decorated soldier from Texas in World War I.
  • Ferdinand Louis Schlemmer – Division camouflage officer in World War I and noted artist in civilian life.
  • Richard Wahler - Distinguished Service Cross recipient
  • World War II

  • Activated: 15 July 1942.
  • Overseas: 10 January 1945.
  • Campaigns: Rhineland, Central Europe.
  • Days of combat: 57.
  • Awards: Distinguished Service Cross-1; Distinguished Service Medal (United States)-1 ; Silver Star-46; Legion of Merit-5; Soldier's Medal-1 ; Bronze Star Medal-135 ; Air Medal-17.
  • Commanders: Maj. Gen. William H. Gill (July 1942 – February 1943), Maj. Gen. Thomas D. Finley (February 1943 to inactivation).
  • Returned to U.S.: 16 December 1945.
  • Inactivated: 27 December 1945.
  • Combat chronicle

    The 89th Infantry Division landed in France at Le Havre, 21 January 1945, and engaged in several weeks of precombat training before moving up to the Sauer River into jump-off positions east of Echternach, 11 March 1945. The next day, the offensive began, and the 89th plunged across the Sauer in a rapid advance to and across the Moselle, 17 March. The offensive rolled on, and the division assaulted across the Rhine River on 26 March 1945 under intense fire in the Wellmich-Oberwesel region. A pontoon bridge was built across the Rhine from St. Goar to St. Goarshausen. In April, the 89th attacked toward Eisenach, taking that town on 6 April. The next objective, Friedrichroda, was secured by 8 April. On 4 April 1945, the 89th overran Ohrdruf, a subcamp of the Buchenwald concentration camp.

    The division continued to move eastward toward the Mulde River, capturing Zwickau by 17 April. The advance was halted, 23 April, and from then until VE-day, the division saw only limited action, engaging in patrolling and general security. Three towns, Lößnitz, Aue, and Stollberg, were kept under constant pressure, but no attacks were launched.


  • Total battle casualties: 1,029
  • Killed in action: 292
  • Wounded in action: 692
  • Missing in action: 5
  • Prisoner of war: 40
  • Assignments in European Theater of Operations

  • 21 January 1945: Fifteenth Army, 12th Army Group.
  • 4 March 1945: XII Corps, Third Army, 12th Army Group.
  • 23 March 1945: VIII Corps.
  • 22 April 1945: VIII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group.
  • See also

  • David B. Barkley - Medal of Honor recipient
  • Charles T. Payne - (great-uncle of Barack Obama, the 44th President of the United States)
  • 89th Sustainment Brigade
  • Post-World War II

    The 89th was reactivated as a Reserve unit in 1947 with headquarters in Wichita, Kansas and redesignated as the 89th Division (Training) in 1959. In 1973 the division colors were cased and the shoulder patch (but not the lineage and honors) was continued in use as the 89th Army Reserve Command (ARCOM). (ARCOMs were not tactical commands, but were instead regional conglomerations of unrelated units. Upon mobilization, units within the ARCOMs would be assigned to active duty units with which they were aligned.) The 89th ARCOM was later redesignated as the 89th Regional Support Command, and in 2003 it became the 89th Regional Readiness Command. In its 2005 BRAC recommendations, United States Department of Defense recommended realigning the Wichita US Army Reserve Center by disestablishing the 89th Regional Readiness Command. This recommendation was part of a larger recommendation to re-engineer and streamline the command and control structure of the Army Reserves that would create the Northwest Regional Readiness Command at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin. The 89th currently exists as the 89th Sustainment Brigade in the US Army Reserve.


  • Nickname: Rolling W ; also called Middle West Division.
  • Slogan: Above The Rest
  • Shoulder patch: A black-bordered khaki circle containing the letter "W" within a black-bordered circle.
  • References

    89th Infantry Division (United States) Wikipedia

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