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Item:
ON5529

Original U.S. WWII 3rd Infantry Division Named Grouping

Regular price $795.00

Item Description

Original Items: One-of-a-kind set. Technician 3rd Grade Robert Ward Boyer ASN 33925186 from Kittanning, Pennsylvania was born in 1921 and enlisted on September 1st, 1944. He was assigned to the 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division of the U.S. Army and fought in the ETO beginning February 16th, 1945. He was assigned to a mortar company in Southern France then entered Germany in March, 1945, and arrived in Austria in May 1945. His regiment occupied Salzburg until early July 1945, at which time he was transferred to Bad Wildungen, Germany for the occupation. All of this is documented in his hand written spiral notebook which is included with the set.

The 3rd Division broke through the West Wall at Zweibrücken in mid- March 1945, crossed the Rhine, and drove through Germany taking the cities of Bamberg, Nürnberg, Augsburg, München, Berchtesgaden and finally the Obersalzberg on May 4th. Thanks to the efforts of the city commandant of Salzburg, the city surrendered on May 4 without a fight, saving the city from destruction. The peaceful surrender freed the 3rd Infantry Division to seize Berchtesgaden and the Obersalzberg, which had not been their originally assigned objectives. Three units of the 7th US Army, namely the 3rd Infantry Division, the 101st Airborne Division, and the 2nd French Armored Division, were competing to capture Hitler’s so-called Eagle’s Nest, the Berghof on the Obersalzberg.

The 3rd Infantry Division arrived in Berchtesgaden first, having seized the only standing bridge over the Saalach and barring its use by any other units. Major General Leclerc of the 2nd French Armored Division was turned away at the bridge on the express order of the 3rd Infantry Division Commander, Major General “Iron Mike” O’Daniel. The French moved into Berchtesgaden later in the evening of May 4, and participated in a joint flag-raising ceremony with the 3rd Infantry Division’s 7th Infantry Regiment on the Obersalzberg the morning of May 5. The 3rd Infantry Division occupied Salzburg from May 4 until early July 1945, at which time it was transferred to Bad Wildungen, Germany. Trying to return to a sense of normalcy, the Division instituted an athletics program, including a rodeo which used captured Hungarian cavalry horses and Austrian bulls.

Included in this fantastic 3rd Infantry Division "The Rock of the Marne" named grouping includes the following items:

- Size 36R Ike Jacket in excellent condition with rare embroidered bullion 3rd Infantry Division patch on left shoulder and a rare embroidered bullion 70th Infantry Division patch on right shoulder. Also included are very rare theater made hand painted 3rd Infantry Division Distinctive Unit Insignias (DI) on each lapel. Sterling Silver Combat Infantryman's Badge, Medal ribbons; European-African-Middle Eastern with two battle stars, WWII Victory Medal, Army of Occupation, Presidential Unit Citation, Sergeant Chevrons, 3 overseas service bars on left sleeve indicating 18+ months of overseas service. The "Belgian Fourragère 1940"- composed of one round smooth cord, partially braided, and of two other cords, of which one is terminated by a knot and a brass ferret - it is made of wool and cotton for NCOs and EM, and of silk for Officers - all threads are tinted in colors resembling the ribbon of the Belgian Croix de Guerre 1940 (i.e. basic red, dotted with green threads) - the Fourragère encircles the shoulder and passes under the armpit, and is fixed by 2 tiny loops onto the button of the shoulder loop.

- Infantry overseas garrison cap with rare theater made hand painted 3rd Infantry Division Distinctive Unit Insignia (DI).

- Unattached patches

- Wartime spiral notebook with handwritten dates and locations.

- Large amount of original wartime news clippings and newspapers including the Stars and Stripes issues announcing HITLER DEAD dated May 2nd, 1945 and ROOSEVELT DEAD dated April 13th, 1945.
- Lots of other paperwork from occupation in German especially from Bad Wildungen, Germany.

Overall a fantastic grouping from a soldier in one of the most famous U.S. infantry divisions of WWII.

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