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249th Engineer Construction Battalion
18th Engineer Brigade

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.

Battalion History 

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Battalion History
1955 - 1991

249th Engineer Bn (Cons) DI

(Source: US Army Corps of Engineers website, accessed March 29, 2013)
The 249th Engineer Battalion (Prime Power) mission (2013) is to provide advice and technical assistance in all aspects of electrical power and distribution systems and to generate and distribute prime electrical power in support of Army operations worldwide. But this was not always the case.

The 249th Engineer Combat Battalion was originally constituted in 25 February 1943 and activated 5 May 1943 at Camp Bowie, Texas. The Battalion was deployed to Europe where it engaged in four major World War II campaigns, and was cited in the Belgian Army Order of the Day for action in the Ardennes in Alsace, France. Following the war, the unit pulled a short tour of occupation duty and then returned to Camp Patrick Henry, Va., where it was inactivated on 27 November 1945.

On 23 March 1948, the Battalion was redesignated as the 442d Engineer Battalion and assigned to the Active Reserve Corps under Fifth Army. The Battalion was activated and affiliated with the Iowa State Highway Commission in 1948-49. It again was inactivated in May 1950 and returned to reserve status.

On 25 June 1952, the 442d Battalion was redesignated as the 249th Engineer Construction Battalion, and on 9 December 1954 was allocated to the Regular Army. The battalion was reactivated on 9 February 1955 and sent to Kaiserslautern, West Germany.

In March 1960, the Battalion deployed to France, fragmented and performed airfield missions. It returned to Karlsruhe, West Germany in 1965.

On 30 June 1975, the Battalion was redesignated as the 249th Engineer Combat Battalion (Heavy).

On 8 December 1990, the 249th deployed to Southwest Asia to participate in Desert Shield and later Desert Storm. For its actions there, the unit was awarded the Meritorious Unit Commendation.

On 29 April 1991, the unit returned to Germany and was inactivated on 15 October 1991.

The 249th is a four time Itschner Award winner with D Company in 1982, C Company in 1983, B Company in 1984, and B Company once again in 1986. Additionally, the 249th Engineer Battalion has produced three Sturgis Award winners.

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(Source: Wikipedia)

End of World War II

IIn May 1945, when the war ended in Europe, the battalion was moved to Plattling, Germany where they built a camp for displaced refugees. In November 1945, the 249th Engineers were sent on their final orders to Camp Lucky Strike, near Marseilles, France and then redeployed back to the United States. The battalion was inactivated at Camp Patrick Henry, Virginia on 27 November 1945.

Occupation & Cold War

In late 1954, the Black Lion Battalion was withdrawn from the Reserves and assigned to the Regular Army. In February 1955, it was activated and assigned to USAREUR and an Engineer Battalion (Combat Heavy). From 1955 until 1960, the 249th Engineer Battalion (Construction) was stationed at Kleber Kaserne, Kaiserslautern, Germany. Then it was dispatched to France for a time.

(After returning from France in 1965,) the battalion was stationed at Gerszewski Barracks, Knielingen, Germany under the command of the 18th Engineer Brigade where it provided construction support to USAREUR elements stationed in Germany for the Cold War.

If you have more information on the history or organization of the 249th Engr Const Bn, please contact me.

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