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4th Armored Division
(no official nickname)

Looking for more information from military/civilian personnel assigned to or associated with the U.S. Army in Germany from 1945 to 1989. If you have any stories or thoughts on the subject, please contact me.


Occupation History

Cold War History


Page 2
Combat Comds
Brigades
Div Arty

Page 3
Div Trains
DISCOM

2nd Sq, 4th Cav


144th Sig Bn

24th Engr Bn

504th Avn Bn

Welcome Booklets

Yearbook 1958

Pass-By 1961

Related Links

 
Division History - Occupation Period
 
Occupation Period
4th Armored Division Patch
 
Subordinate units remaining in Germany were redesignated as Constabulary units on 1 May 1946 (Webmaster Note: this table is still a DRAFT; still doing research on original duty stations of 4th Armd Div units in the April-May 1945 timeframe):
  ORIG. DESIGNATION   ORIG. STATION   NEW DESIGNATION   NEW STATION
  Hq/Hq Co, 4th Armd Div       HHT, 1st Con Bde   Wiesbaden
  Hq/Hq Co, Cbt Cmd "A"       HHT, 2nd Con Bde   Munich
  Hq/Hq Co, Cbt Cmd "B"       HHT, 3rd Con Bde   Bad Cannstatt (Stuttgart)
  8th Tank Bn   Straubing   8th Con Sqdn    
  35th Tank Bn       35th Con Sqdn   Füssen
  37th Tank Bn   Deggendorf   37th Con Sqdn   Wetzlar
  25th Cav Rcn Sq       25th Con Sqdn   Regensburg
Straubing
  10th Armd Inf Bn   Kitzingen?   10th Con Sqdn    
  51st Armd Inf Bn   Passau   51st Con Sqdn   Passau
  53rd Armd Inf Bn       53rd Con Sqdn   Schwabach
  22nd Armd FA Bn   Neustadt?   22nd Con Sqdn   Hammelburg?
  66th Armd FA Bn       66th Con Sqdn   Degerndorf
  94th Armd FA Bn       94th Con Sqdn    

(Source: Email from Arnold Belasco)

I joined the 51st AIB, 4th Armored Division in March 1946 in Passau. At that time we were living in a school house down near "the point." This is where the 3 rivers come together, the Inn, the Ilse, and the Danube ,,, not sure of the spelling.

Was looking for some info on the 4th Armored when I came across your site. It is a long time ago ...

Have a few memories ... when I first got there, we rotated every couple of months between 3 towns: Passau, Pocking and Freyung. Believe this was to give the Germans the idea that we had many troops there at the time.

A number of the guys in the outfit were rotating home on points ... so many points for combat, time in service, etc.

I do remember visiting some of my friends at an outpost near Czechoslovakia, we were sitting aound playing poker at night when gunfire broke out. I was told, don't worry about it, it's the Russians firing up at us, our guys will return the fire shortly. It seemed it happened every night.

I do remember when General Harmon was visiting us, this must have been when the Constabulary first came into existence. Somehow, our commanding office knew his driver and I had some artillery training. I don't know where he got it, but we had a 75mm cannon. We loaded it with gunpowder and were told, as soon as Harmon comes around that hill, start firing. We did, but didn't realize we were right down the road from a German hospital. Well, people came pouring out of the hospital. They must have thought the war had started again.z

This is probably not the kind of stuff you would like, but it's what came to mind.


TELEPHONE DIRECTORIES
 

1. HQ 4th Armd Div Telephone Directory, early 1946







 
Division History - Cold War Period
 

In December 1957, 4th Armored Division arrived in Germany from Ft. Hood, TX and established
division headquarters in this building at Cooke Barracks, Goeppingen (Photo from 1968)
 

The Big Picture: 4th Armored Division, 1960s (YouTube)

Location of 4th Armd Div units and stations, 1958 (Walter Elkins)
Click on the graphic to view a higher res version of the map
If you have additional information/corrections, contact the webmaster - see email link at top of page
 
Commanding Generals, 4th Armored Division
 

1957 - 1971 (list is complete)

  • Maj Gen Andrew P. O'Meara (1 Aug 1957 – 13 Feb 1959)
  • Maj Gen James B. Quill (14 Feb 1959 – 1 Apr 1960)
  • Maj Gen John K. Waters (2 Apr 1960 – 27 Aug 1961)
  • Maj Gen James H. Polk (28 Aug 1961 – 30 Nov 1962) (1)
  • Maj Gen John F. Franklin, Jr. (1 Dec 1962 – 31 May 1964)
  • Maj Gen Alexander D. Surles, Jr. (1 Jun 1964 – 17 Dec 1965)
  • Maj Gen James W. Sutherland, Jr. (18 Dec 1965 – 23 May 1967)
  • Maj Gen Edward C.D. Scherrer (24 May 1967 – 2 Dec 1968)
  • Maj Gen Stephen W. Downey, Jr. (3 Dec 1968 – 4 Feb 1970)
  • Maj Gen William W. Cobb (5 Feb 1970 – 10 May 1971) (2)
(1) MG Polk later served in Germany as CINCUSAREUR.
(2) MG Cobb, 22nd division commander, was reassigned to Berlin after the inactivation of the 4th AD and became the US Commander, Berlin.

 
1957 - 1971
COLD WAR - GERMANY
(Source: 52nd Anniversary, 1918 - 1970. The JAYHAWK Anniversary Issue, August 19, 1970.)
On June 15, 1954, the division was reactivated at Fort Hood, Tex.

In 1957 the division was ordered to Germany for the second time, and made the move in three days. The land was the same, but the mission was vastly different. The 4th Armored was now a peacetime force as part of the NATO shield. Former enemies were now trusted allies.

Today the 4th Armd Div, commanded by Maj. Gen. William W. Cobb, trains diligently to keep men and equipment in readiness. The Tank Crew Qualification Course, Mechanized Infantry and Scout Squad Proficiency Courses and Operational Readiness Tests are now the big challenges.

Apart from participation in the Command Post Exercises Certain Check and Front Centre '70, in which the brigades moved to field positions to test their command skills under combat conditions, there were a number of activities the Tankers enjoyed this past year.

In September, the 4th Armd Div band represented the US at the observance of the silver anniversary of the liberation of the Belgians during World War II, in Brussels. German-American Friendship Week was held throughout the division from April 26 through May 2, and from Goeppingen to Bamberg and Erlangen to Zirndorf, it was a week of bratwurst and beer, band concerts and bi-national athletic events.

Even in the line of duty, the 4th Armored has close ties with its host country, as numerous joint training exercises and marksmanship competitions are held with German Army units throughout the year.

 
1957
  Fort Hood ARMORED SENTINEL

The website "Portal to Texas History," serves as a gateway to Texas history materials from Texas libraries, museums and archives. The website is maintained by the University of Texas Library's Digital Projects Unit.

Among its online newspaper collections are issues of the ARMORED SENTINEL that covered news of the Fort Hood garrison and the units assigned to this large post in Texas.

Click on the thumbnail (left) and follow the 4th Armored Division as it prepares for its GYRO deployment to Germany in late 1957 as well as the 2nd Armored Division as it settles in at Fort Hood after being replaced by the 4th AD in Germany.


Cooke Barracks and the Army airfield, August 1960 (Albrecht Brugger/www.leo-bw.de)
 

An M-24 CHAFFEE stands gate guard in front of 4th Armd Div Headquarters in Göppingen
 

A WWII-era M-4A1 SHERMAN tank next to the flag pole at Cooke Barracks
 
1958
(Source: STARS & STRIPES, Feb 8, 1958)
Stuttgart Subarea Welcomes 4th Armd
Lots of Extra Work in Big Switch

STUTTGART, Germany (Special) -- The Stuttgart Subarea really had to hustle to roll out the welcome mat for the 4th Armd Div, which Gyroscoped into the subarea from Texas.

The 4th Armd Div moved into the area formerly occupied by the 8th Inf Div, which in turn moved into Northern Area Comd to take over the area formerly housing the 2d Armd Div, which Gyroscoped to the U.S.

According to Stuttgart Subarea officials, the major part of the logistical-support work involved in the movement of the 8th and the 4th divisions fell on personnel of the subarea here.

Extra Troops
To handle the sharp increase in the work, additional troops were assigned to the subarea. Sections most affected were transportation, billeting, quartermaster and engineer. The subarea's S4 section did the coordinating.

Posts involved in the 4th Armd Div move included Ulm, Leipheim, Heilbronn, Neckarsulm, Goeppingen, Schwaebisch Hall and Schwaebisch Gmuend, where 4th Armd soldiers and their families moved into quarters previously occupied by 8th Div personnel.

Timetables for various parts of the two-division switch were worked out at USAREUR Hq, subarea officials said, but these had to be coordinated with a host of smaller timetables set up in the subarea so that the movement could go off without a hitch.

'Biggest Fear'
"Our biggest fear," said Maj Howard C. Merrill, assistant S4, "was things we could not count on such as winter weather. We never knew when a blizzard or an ice storm would disrupt our plans. But luck was with us all the way."

Problems involved with moving troops without their dependents were nominal, officials said. The newly arrived soldiers came equipped with the same equipment the moving 8th Div troops had, they said, so that phase of the move was relatively easy.

The bigger problem came with the dependents, officials said, because no two families are exactly alike. All told, 1,000 housing units had to be changed.

Procedures had to be set up to move out the 8th Div dependents with a minimum of inconvenience, and plans had to be made to move the 4th Armd Div families in. And both plans had to be executed.

Each housing unit was equipped with about $20 in foodstuffs to help the new arrivals get settled in a hurry. The transportation section had its hands full with baggage.

One 4th Armd soldier noted that "I never saw any of the subarea troops, but my wife and I certainly appreciate what they did. The arrangement for myself and my family in getting together and settling down in our new quarters was swell."

1958
(Source: Walter Elkins)

Location of 4th Armored Division units, June 1958

 
Yearbook 1958
 
  Email from Michael Gushwa, author of the "2/5 FA Wiley Kaserne Neu-Ulm West Germany" website.

A few weeks ago somebody gave me a 4th Armored division yearbook from 1958 and I scanned it and put it on my website with my other book. It's got about 200 pages. Thanks

http://www.wiley2-5fa.com/new_page_10.htm

 
1960
(Sources: The 4th Armored Division, Welcome Booklet, 1960 or 1961, Germany)
ORGANIZATION (1961):

UNIT DESIGNATION

DUTY STATION  
HHC, 4th Armd Div Cooke, Göppingen Special Trps
HHC, CC "A" Wiley, Neu Ulm  
HHC, CC "B" Ferris, Erlangen  
HHC, CC "C" McKee, Crailsheim  
1st MTB, 35th Arm Ferris, Erlangen  
1st MTB, 37th Arm McKee, Crailsheim  
2nd MTB, 66th Arm Air Field, Illesheim  
2nd MTB, 67th Arm Monteith, Fürth  
2nd Rcn Sq, 15th Cav O'Brien, Schwabach  
2nd ARB, 41st Inf Wiley, Neu Ulm  
2nd ARB, 50th Inf Ferris, Erlangen  
2nd ARB, 51st Inf Ford, Ulm  
1st ARB, 54th Inf Wharton, Heilbronn  
HHB, 4th Armd DivArty Pinder, Zirndorf  
2nd How Bn, 14th Arty Monteith, Fürth  
2nd Rkt How Bn, 16th Arty Bismarck, Schw. Gmünd  
1st How Bn, 22nd Arty Pinder, Zirndorf  
2nd How Bn, 78th Arty McKee, Crailsheim  
24th Engr Bn Johnson, Fürth  
504th Avn Co Monteith, Fürth  
Det "C" McKee, Crailsheim  
Det "H" Cooke, Göppingen  
144th Sig Bn Cooke, Göppingen  
46th Med Bn Wharton, Heilbronn  
126th Ord Bn Cooke, Göppingen  
"A" Company Nelson, Ulm supports CC "A"
"B" Company Monteith, Fürth supports CC "B"
"C" Company McKee, Crailsheim supports CC "C"
"D" Company Ferris, Erlangen  
4th QM Bn Cooke, Göppingen  
Division Band   Special Trps
404th MP Co Cooke, Göppingen Special Trps
504th Admin Co Cooke, Göppingen Special Trps
4th Armd Div Trains Cooke, Göppingen Special Trps
Div NCO Academy Wiley, Neu Ulm  

Pass-By 1961
 
(Source: Letter from Murray Sunday, 66th Armor Bn)
  The 4th Armored Division held a full-scale pass-by in Area M North, Grafenwöhr Military Reservation, on 17 June 1961 in commemoration of the Division's Activation Day, Flag Day, Infantry Birthday, and Armed Forces Day.

The event represented an historical occasion, including two significant "firsts:"

-- First public viewing on the European continent of the mass of an entire US Armored Division since World War II.

-- First display of the flags of the 50 United States outside of the US.

More than 3000 tracked and wheeled vehicles were assembled, manned by more than 12,000 troops. Under a brilliant sky and for more than two hours -- tanks; armored personnel carriers; self-propelled howitzers; signal, engineer, and ordnance equipment; and wheeled vehicles of every type rolled past more than 3000 spectators and representatives of several press, radio, and television media in an impressive display of power. 

Pass-By 1961
Grafenwöhr, Germany
     

1. 50 State flags

2. Aerial view of the pass-by

3. A unit mounted on jeeps and weapons carriers passes in front of the reviewing party

 
I spent 31 months in Illesheim, from 1960 to 1963. Was there when they built the Wall in Berlin. I remember the Sunday morning they called the Alert. We really thought the "balloon had gone up" and we were going to war. I remember to this day that chill that went through us all. Of course they didn't tell us what was going on for two or three days.

The time I spent in Illesheim wasn't as hard on me as it was for the guys from the big cities since I was from a small town in farmland Indiana. I enjoyed meeting a lot of good men and after almost 50 years I still wonder about them all.

I hope to hear from people who served in Illesheim and hope the web site keeps growing.
Murray Sunday

1961
Maj Gen James H. Polk, 4th AD commander, 1961-1962

Special guest, former commanding general of the 4th AD during WWII, John S. Wood
(in civilian clothes), accompanied by outgoing CG, John Waters and incoming CG,
James Polk, head towards the parade field for the change of command ceremony,
August 1961
 

Aerial view of the parade field at Cooke Barracks during the change of command
ceremony held on August 28, 1961. The reviewing stand in middle distance (left).
 

Change of Command, 1961
Göppingen, Germany
     

1. Cooke Bks, 1961

2. Cooke Bks, 1961

 

1962
(Source: Walter Elkins)

Location of 4th Armored Division units, June 1962
 



A while back, this sports plaque was listed on a well-known online auction
website. No date was given but based on the unit crests, I have idenitfied
it to have been produced around 1962. Also, the crest for the 51st INF was
missing on the original. Unit designations have been added by me.
Comments or corrections are welcome.

 
MISCELLANEOUS INFORMATION
(Source: Rolling Review, 23 April 1962)
 
Combat Command "A," Ulm
1st MTB, 37th Armor (Crailsheim) and 2nd ARB, 51st Inf (Ulm).

Combat Command "B," Erlangen
2nd MTB, 67th Armor (Fürth) and 2nd ARB, 41st Inf (Neu Ulm).

Combat Command "C," Crailsheim
1st MTB, 35th Armor (Erlangen), 2nd MTB, 66th Armor (Illesheim) (1), 2nd ARB, 50th Inf (Erlangen) and 1st ARB, 54th Inf (Heilbronn).

(1) 66th Armor, Illesheim, was transferred from Combat Command "B" to CC "C" in August 1961.

The US Army post at Illesheim was redesignated as Storck Barracks in Dec 1961. The facility was named in honor of Col Louis Storck, commanding officer of CCR, 4th Armd Div, who was killed in France during WWII.
 
CORRECTIONS
(Source: Email from Frank A. Tapparo)  

I was in the 4th AD from June 1961 to December 1964, serving in the 2/50th ARB in Erlangen (Jun 61-Nov 62) and Div HQ at Goeppingen (Nov 62-Dec 64). I was also at Graf for the roll-by, which was also a farewell to Div Commander MG John Waters (Patton's son-in-law) and a welcome to the new commander MG James Polk. There are some interesting stories I have about the roll-by including what happened when four abreast vehicles passing the reviewing stand went to two abreast on the tank trail -- not a pretty sight. Also, some of the units had "shined" the right sides of the tracks with oil and guess what happened when the place turned to dust! 

Also, there are a few errors in the description of the first page.

Under "Miscellaneous Information" CCB and CCC are mislabeled.

CCB had 1/35, 2/50. and 1/54th.

Combat Command "B," Erlangen
1st MTB, 35th Armor (Erlangen); 2nd ARB, 50th Inf (Erlangen) and 1st ARB, 54th Inf (Heilbronn).

Also, though it is correct that the 4th AD had units at Heilbronn in 1961, the 4th AD and 3rd  ID switched some locations, with the units at Heilbronn going to 3rd ID and the 4th AD picking up the 3rd ID units at Bamberg.

In addition to forming a support command, the armored divisions changed combat commands to brigades and the artillery lost its BG commander, who became the second BG in the division HQ.

In addition, there is a note that with the ROAD organization the infantry units of the 4th AD became mechanized. NOT TRUE. The 4th AD's infantry units were always mechanized -- at least for several years before I joined 2/50 in June 1961. We had M-59 APCs. About the time of the ROAD reorganization, we switched from M-59s to M-113s, about the same time the armored units went from M-48s to M-60s. That was also the time when we went from M-1 rifles and .30 MGs to M-14s and M-60s firing the 7.62mm round. 

The ROAD reorganization was not as traumatic on the armored divisions, as, with the exception of forming a support command from what was division trains, the reorganization was minimal. In addition to forming a support command, the armored divisions changed combat commands to brigades and the artillery lost its BG commander, who became the second BG in the division HQ. 

The infantry divisions, on the other hand, had to go from a Pentomic structure (five battle groups) to a triangular division.

Thanks for keeping the memories alive.

Can anyone provide details on how CC "A" and CC "C" were organized in the 1962/1963 period, just before the transition to ROAD?

 
1963
ROAD Reorganization
 
(Source: STARS & STRIPES, Sept 14, 1963)
On Sept 21 1963, the 4th Armd Div marked the formal completion of the division's reorganization and redesignation plan under the ROAD system. The reorganization began on May 1. A division review held at Monteith Barracks on Sept 21 marked the formal redesignation.

4th Armd Div is the fourth division in USAREUR to complete the reorganization of its combat capability structure under ROAD: Since January 1963, the 24th, 8th and 3rd Infantry Divisions have reorganized into mechanized divisions.

Under ROAD, the 4th Armed Division 's three combat commands were changed to brigades; Div Trains was reorganized into a support command; and the division's infantry battalions were mechanized (addition of armored personnel carriers).

In addition, the ROAD changes brought an increase of two armor battalions and one mechanized infantry battalion (Source: Pamphlet for newcomers to the 4th Armored Division, 1965).

(SOME) CHANGES UNDER ROAD (1963)

INFANTRY BATTALIONS
2nd ARB, 41st INF, Neu Ulm -> reorg/redes as 1st Bn, 51st INF, 1 July 1963; battalion remains in Neu Ulm
2nd ARB, 50th INF, Erlangen -> replaced by 3rd Bn, 51st INF, April 1963; 2/50th relieved from assignment to 4th AD & reassigned to 2nd AD (CONUS)
2nd ARB, 51st INF, Ulm -> reorg/redes as 2nd Bn, 51st INF, 1 August 1963; battalion remains in Ulm
1st ARB, 54th INF, Heilbronn -> reorg/redes as 1st Bn, 4th INF and assigned to 3rd ID; 5 June 1963; 1/54 colors moved to Bamberg
1st Bn, 54th INF, Bamberg -> activated 5 June 1963
2nd Bn, 54th INF, Bamberg -> activated and assigned to 4th AD, 15 August 1963

Above information is tentative - looking for confirmation or corrections

ARMOR BATTALIONS
to be added soon

1964
(Source: Walter Elkins)

Location of 4th Armored Division units, August 1964

 
1966

Your Army Reports: 4th Arm Div firepower demonstration at Graf, c. 1966 (YouTube)
(see report starting at 1:15 min into the program)

1968
(Source: Walter Elkins)

Location of 4th Armored Division units, June 1968
 
The list was created by Walter Elkins and is based on units and locations listed in the June 1968 STATION LIST. For corrections, please contact the webmaster.

1969/1970
(Source: Unit Day Issues of the Rolling Review)




 
 



Pages 8-9, ROLLING REVIEW, 1969




 
DUIs - 1950s-60s

CC "A"

CC "B"

CC "C"

TRAINS
 
 
NCO ACADEMY

4th AD NCO Academy DUI

 
24th Engineer Battalion
 

Short home movie taken by a soldier assigned to the 24th Engineer Battalion at
Johnson Barracks, Fürth, 1962-63 (YouTube)
(A few good shots of the post are visible as well as some scenes during field training)
 
ADM Pltn, 24th Engr Bn
Who can provide details on the ADM Platoon?

 
2nd Squadron, 4th Cavalry
 
2nd Squadron, 4th Cavalry DI
 
(Source: Email from Paul Keats)
 
I arrived in Frankfurt in July, 1970, a month after graduating from Infantry OCS at Fort Benning.  I was assigned to the Seventh Army, 4th Armored Division and told to report to the 2nd Squadron, 4th Cavalry in Schwabach. The Commanding Officer was LTC Calvin R. Bean.  

I spent two years, first as platoon leader, 2nd Platoon A Troop; “A” Troop Executive Officer; Squadron Support Platoon Leader; and finally as S-1  Adjutant to LTC James Dozier (later, then Brigadier Gen. Dozier was captured by the Red Brigade in Naples, Italy and then released). 

As a member of the 2/4 Cav, I participated in several Reforger exercises, Tank Gunnery (M-551 Sheridans) at Grafenwoehr  and Hohenfels.  I also served at Camp Gates on the Czech border.  After I left the Squadron in April of 1972, the colors were retired and the unit was renamed 1st Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment.  The 4th Armored Division had already become the 1st Armored Division, “Old Ironsides”.

The Crest you display was the one worn by members of the 2nd Sqdn, 4th Cavalry, headquartered in Schwabach.


Related Links:
The Fourth Armored Division - Guy Ries' site is focused on the history of the 4th Armored during WWII.
4th Armored Division Yearbook 1958 - the entire book (200 pages) is posted in the 2nd Bn, 5th FA Wiley Bks website.