Original U.S. WWII Brigadier General Triple Silver Star Recipient Named Grouping

Item Description

Original Item: One-of-a-kind. Brigadier General Ernest Aaron Bixby (1899-1965) was born born on February 22, 1899 in North Charlestown, New Hampshire. Commissioned in the Field Artillery upon graduating from West Point in 1919. Assistant Professor of Military Science and Tactics at Princeton 1926-1928. Instructor with the organized reserves in Kentucky 1928-1931, then at West Point 1934-1936. Graduated from Command and General Staff School in 1937. Again Assistant Professor of Military Science and Tactics at Princeton 1937-1939. Graduated from the Army Industrial College in 1940. Duty in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of War in 1941.

At the start of World War Two was assigned in the Operations Division at the War Department General Staff 1941-1942. Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations at Army Ground Forces 1942-1943. Commanding Officer of 4th Armored Division Artillery March 1943 - September 1944. Brigadier General in November 1944. Commanding General of 90th Division Artillery 1944-1945, then the Army Personnel Center at Camp Atterbury 1945-1946. He served in helping run the Nuremberg Trails and Retired as Brigadier General in November 1955.

Decorations included three Silver Stars, the Legion of Merit and two Bronze Stars. Two of this three Silver Stars were with the 4th Armored Division, the other Silver Star and the Legion of Merit medal was awarded for his service with the 90th Infantry Division. These can be verified at this link.

Died on March 1, 1965 and was interred at Arlington National Cemetery. 

Reference can be found at this link.

This uniform grouping named to Brigadier General Ernest Aaron Bixby includes the following items:

- Original 1942 dated size 38 Class A Uniform Jacket named BIXBY on interior offered in excellent condition with the following medal ribbons: Silver Star with two Oak Leafs, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star with Oak Leaf, Army Commendation Medal, WWI Victory Medal, American Campaign, American Defense, European–African–Middle Eastern Campaign with three bronze battle stars, WWII Victory Medal, German Occupation Medal. Jacket features Belgian Red and Green Fourragère shoulder cord, WWI and WWII overseas service bars and much more.

- High quality English made WW2 Army officer peaked cap with WIMBLEDON maker label with Genuine FUR FELT.

- Officer's shirt in excellent condition.

A wonderful uniform grouping from West Point graduate a three time Silver Star and Legion of Merit recipient that served in in multiple Divisions during WWII!

4th Armored Division in World War II
The division was organized as a full Armored Division in May and June 1942 under the command of Major General John Shirley Wood. It left Pine Camp for Camp Forrest for the Tennessee maneuvers in the Cumberland Mountains held in September and October. In Mid-November, it was transferred to the Desert Training Center (DTC) in the California-Arizona maneuver area and was the first Armored Division to occupy Camp Ibis near Needles, California in the Mojave Desert, which was close to the Arizona and Nevada borders. On 3 June, the 4th AD arrived at Camp Bowie, Texas, an armored training center located at the southern end of the Piute Valley, for more maneuvers until 11–18 July when it departed for Camp Myles Standish in Massachusetts for winter training. On 29 December, the 4th AD departed Boston to conduct training in England in preparation for the invasion of Normandy.

After training in England from January to July 1944, the 4th Armored Division landed at Utah Beach, on 11 July, over a month after the initial Normandy landings, and first entered combat on 17 July; on 28 July, battle action as part of the VIII Corps exploitation force for Operation Cobra, the 4th AD secured the Coutances area. The 4th AD then swung south to take Nantes, cutting off the Brittany Peninsula, 12 August 1944. Turning east, it drove swiftly across France north of the Loire, smashed across the Moselle 11–13 September, flanked Nancy and captured Lunéville, 16 September. The 4th AD fought several German panzergrenadier brigades in the Lorraine area including the SS Panzergrenadier Brigade 49 and SS Panzergrenadier Brigade 51 at this time, defeating a larger German force through superior tactics and training.[6]

After maintaining a defensive line, Chambrey to Xanrey to Hénaménil, from 27 September to 11 October, the 4th AD rested briefly before returning to combat 9 November with an attack in the vicinity of Viviers. The 4th AD cleared Bois de Serres, 12 November, advanced through Dieuze and crossed the Saar River, 21–22 November, to establish and expand bridgehead and took Singling and Bining, then Baerendorf 24 November, before being relieved 8 December.

The 4th Armored Division received the following unit awards from France: Croix de Guerre with Palm (27–29 July 1944), Croix de Guerre with Palm (12–29 September 1944), and French Fourragere in the colors of the Croix de Guerre.

Battle of the Bulge
Two days after the Germans launched their Ardennes Offensive, the 4th AD entered the fight (18 December 1944), racing northwest into Belgium, covering 150 miles in 19 hours.[6] The 4th AD, spearheading Patton's Third Army, attacked the Germans at Bastogne and, on 26 December, was the first unit (Company C, 37th Tank Battalion led the 4th Armored Division column that relieved Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge)[8] to breakthrough at Bastogne and relieve the besieged 101st Airborne Division. Six weeks later the 4th AD jumped off from Luxembourg City in an eastward plunge that carried it across the Moselle River at Trier, south, and east to Worms, and across the Rhine, 24–25 March 1945. Advancing all night, the 4th AD crossed the Main River the next day, south of Hanau, and continued to push on. Lauterbach fell 29 March, Creuzburg across the Werra on 1 April, Gotha on 4 April ... where the 4th AD liberated Ohrdruf prison camp, the first NSDAP camp liberated by U.S. troops. By 12 April the 4TH AD was across the Saale River. Pursuit of the enemy continued, and by 6 May the division had crossed into Czechoslovakia, established a bridgehead across the Otava River at Strakonice, with forwarding elements at Pisek. The 4th AD was reassigned to the XII Corps on 30 April 1945. The 4th AD received the following Letter of Commendation:

To: Maj. Gen. Hugh J. Gaffey: The outstanding celerity of your movement and the unremitting, vicious and skillful manner in which you pushed the attack, terminating at the end of four days and nights of incessant battle in the relief of Bastogne, constitutes one of the finest chapters in the glorious history of the United States Army. You and the officers and men of your command are hereby commended for a superior performance. Lt. Gen. George S. Patton, Jr., Commander, Third U.S. Army

The 4th AD's second commander, Major General John Shirley Wood, (known as "P" Wood to his contemporaries, the "P" standing for "Professor", and "Tiger Jack" to his men) who took over the division officially on 18 June 1942, trained the 4th Armored Division for two years before he personally led it into combat in France, on 28 July 1944, and was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross. On 1 August, General George Patton's U.S. Third Army became operational and the 4th AD became the spearhead of the Third Army. The British military armor theorist and historian, Captain Basil Henry Liddell Hart, once referred to General Wood as "the Rommel of the American armored forces." Like Rommel, Wood commanded from the front, and preferred staying on the offensive, using speed and envelopment tactics to confuse the enemy. General Wood often utilized a light Piper Cub liaison aircraft flown by his personal pilot, Major Charles "Bazooka Charlie" Carpenter, to keep up with his rapidly moving division, sometimes personally carrying corps orders from headquarters directly to his advancing armored columns.

On 3 December 1944, General Wood was relieved as division commander. The division was then led by Major General Hugh Gaffey through the Battle of the Bulge and until the end of the war. Major General Archibald R. Kennedy commanded the division after the war.

Among the most famous members of the 4th AD during World War II was Creighton Abrams, who commanded the 37th Tank Battalion. Abrams later rose to command all U.S. forces in South Vietnam during the Vietnam War and served as U.S. Army Chief of Staff in the 1970s. The current U.S. M-1 tank is named after him.

The 90th Infantry Division in WW2:
The 90th Infantry Division landed in England, 5 April 1944, and trained from 10 April to 4 June.

First elements of the division saw action on D-Day, 6 June, on Utah Beach, Normandy, the remainder entering combat 10 June, cutting across the Merderet River to take Pont l'Abbe in heavy fighting. After defensive action along the river Douve, the division attacked to clear the Foret de Mont-Castre (Hill 122), clearing it by 11 July, in spite of fierce resistance. In this action the Division suffered 5000 killed, wounded, or captured, one of the highest casualty rates suffered in WW II. An attack on the island of Saint-Germain-sur-Sèves on 23 July failed so the 90th bypassed it and took Périers on 27 July.

On 12 August, the division drove across the Sarthe River, north and east of Le Mans, and took part in the closing of the Falaise Gap, by reaching 1st Polish Armored Division in Chambois, 19 August.

It then raced across France, through Verdun, 6 September, to participate in the siege of Metz, 14 September-19 November, capturing Maizières-lès-Metz, 30 October, and crossing the Moselle River at Kœnigsmacker, 9 November. Elements of the 90th Infantry assaulted and captured the German-held Fort de Koenigsmacker 9–12 November.

On 6 December 1944, the division pushed across the Saar River and established a bridgehead north of Saarlautern (present-day Saarlouis), 6–18 December, but with the outbreak of Gerd von Rundstedt's (Army Group A) drive, the Battle of the Bulge, withdrew to the west bank on 19 December, and went on the defensive until 5 January 1945, when it shifted to the scene of the Ardennes struggle, having been relieved along the Saar River by the 94th Infantry Division. It drove across the Our River, near Oberhausen, 29 January, to establish and expand a bridgehead. In February, the division smashed through Siegfried Line fortifications to the Prüm River.

After a short rest, the 90th continued across the Moselle River to take Mainz, 22 March, and crossed the rivers Rhine, the Main, and the Werra in rapid succession. Pursuit continued to the Czech border, 18 April 1945, and into the Sudetes mountain range. The division was en route to Prague when they came upon the remaining 1500 emaciated prisoners left behind by the SS at Flossenbürg prison camp. Today, a memorial wall at the former camp honors the 90th as the liberators of Flossenbürg prison camp.[3] A week later, word came that the war in Europe ended on 8 May 1945. On that same day, Erich Hartmann, the highest-scoring fighter ace in history, along with a squadron of the elite Jagdgeschwader 52 fighter wing (the highest-scoring fighter wing in history), surrendered to the 90th.

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