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Sat, 10.27.1917

98th Infantry Division Formed

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*On this date in 1917, the 92nd Infantry Division was formed. 

This was a segregated infantry division of the United States Army that served in both World War I and World War II.  The 92nd Division was first constituted on paper in the National Army, over six months after the U.S. entry into World War I.  The division was commanded throughout most of its existence by Major General Charles C. Ballou. It was composed of the 183rd Infantry Brigade with the 365th and 366th Infantry Regiments. It included the 184th Infantry Brigade with the 367th and 368th Infantry Regiments, together with supporting artillery, engineer, medical and signal units attached.  

The division was organized at Camp Funston, Kansas, the men first being trained at the regimental level. For this division, 104 Black captains, 397 first lieutenants, and 125 second lieutenants were trained at a "negro officers' camp" in Des Moines, Iowa.  A special "negro zone" was to be built at the east end of Camp Funston, with "separate amusement places and exchanges." A.D. Jellison, a banker of Junction City, Kansas, gave a plot of land for a "community house," to be erected by the Black men from the seven states which sent Black trainees. 

The division was organized with Black soldiers from all states. In 1918, before leaving for France, the American buffalo was selected as the divisional insignia due to the "Buffalo Soldiers" nickname, given to Black cavalrymen in the 19th century. The "Buffalo Soldiers Division" divisional nickname was inherited from the 366th Infantry, one of the first units of the division organized.  The 92nd Infantry Division was the only Black infantry division to see combat in Europe during World War II, as part of the U.S. Fifth Army, fighting in the Italian Campaign. The division served in the Italian Campaign from 1944 to the war's end.  

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Reference:

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