1st Infantry Division (Mechanized)
Definition/Scope: The 1st Infantry Division (M), 1st ID (M) has a shoulder insignia that a 1 overlaid upon a OD green patch with a nickname of "Big Red One". They have participated in nearly every armed action from North Africa to OIF. The 1st ID is the oldest division, 1917, in the US Army. While the divisions colors are at Fort Riley they have elements at Schweinfurt, Vilseck, Kitzigen and Bamberg Germany. The First Division was enacted into the U.S. Army as Headquarters, First Expeditionary Division, May 24, 1917. It was organized in May 1917 from Army units then in service on the Mexican border and at various Army posts throughout the United States. Upon arrival in France, the Division, less its artillery, was assembled in the First (Gondrecourt) training area, and the artillery was at Le Valdahon. On the 4th of July, the 2nd Battalion, 16th Infantry, paraded through the streets of Paris to bolster the sagging French spirits. Two days later, July 6 , the First Expeditionary Division was redesignated as the First Infantry Division. On the morning of Oct. 23, the first American shell of the war was sent toward German lines by a First Division artillery unit. Two days later, the 2nd Bn., 16th Inf., suffered the first American casualties of the war. The Division was the first to cross the Rhine into occupied Germany. By the end of the war, the Division had suffered 22,668 casualties and boasted five Medals of Honor winners. On Nov. 8,1942, following training in the United Kingdom, men of the First Division landed on the coast of Algeria near Oran. On May 9, 1943, the commander of the German "Afrika Korps" surrendered his force of 40,000. On D-Day, June 6,1944, the Big Red One stormed ashore at Omaha Beach. The 1st ID has also participated in all other armed actions since.
Broader Terms:Army divisions (active)
Related Terms:Fort Riley