Recreating History

97th Infantry Division

World War I

The division was activated 5 September 1918 and inactivated 20 November 1918 ; one infantry regiment (303d) served with the 76th Division.


World War II

Activated: 25 February 1943.

Overseas: 19 February 1945, for the ETO; 28 August 1945, for the Pacific Theater.

Campaigns: Central Europe.

Days of combat: 41 (ETO).

Awards: MH-1 ; DSC-1 ; DSM-1 ; SS61; LM-2; SM-3 ; BSM-206.


Maj. Gen. Louis A. Craig (4 February 1943-19 January 1944)
Brig. Gen. Milton B. Halsey (20 January 1944-24 September 1945)
Maj. Gen. Herman F. Kramer (24 September 1945 to inactivation).

Returned to U.S.: 26 June 1945, from the ETO.

Overseas: 16 September 1945, to the Philippine Islands.

Inactivated: 31 March 1946 in Japan.

Combat Chronicle

The 97th Infantry Division landed at Le Havre, France, 2 March 1945, and moved to Camp Lucky Strike. On 28 March, the Division crossed the German border west of Aachen and took up a defensive position along the west bank of the Rhine River opposite Dusseldorf, engaging in patrolling. The 97th entered the battle of the Ruhr pocket, crossing the Rhine near Bonn, 3 April, and taking up a position on the southern bank of the Sieg River. It crossed that river, 7 April, against light resistance and fought a street-to-street engagement in Siegburg on the 10th. Pushing on toward Dusseldorf through difficult terrain and heavy resistance in densely wooded areas, the Division captured Solingen, 17 April. Dusseldorf fell on the next day and the Ruhr pocket was eliminated. Moving to protect the left flank of the Third Army on its southern drive, the 97th took Cheb, Czechoslovakia, on 25 April 1945 and attacked the Czechoslovak pocket near Widen, Germany, on the 29th. It had advanced to Konstantinovy Lazne, Czechoslovakia, when it received the cease-fire order on 7 May. The Division left for Le Havre, 16 June 1945, for redeployment to the Pacific, arriving at Cebu, Philippine Islands, 16 September, and then sailed to Japan for occupation duty, arriving at Yokohama 23 September 1945.

Assignments in the ETO

30 January 1945: Fifteenth Army, 12th Army Group.
28 March 1945: XXII Corps.
1 April 1945: First Army, 12th Army Group.
10 April 1945: XVIII (Abn) Corps.
19 April 1945: Third Army, 12th Army Group.
22 April 1945: XII Corps.
28 April 1945: First Army, 12th Army Group.
30 April 1945: V Corps.
6 May 1945: Third Army, 12th Army Group.


Nickname: Trident. Shoulder patch: A vertical trident in white on a blue background.