Danish Living History Association
4th Infantry Division
Creation of the 4th ID
This division was created in december 1917 when the United States prepared to send troops to the European battlefields during the first world war.
In July 1918, soldiers of the 4th Infantry division fight in France with the French armies against the German troops, in the Marne and Aisne areas. Losses are heavy during that period.
World War Two
The 4th Infantry division is sent to England in 1943 in order to prepare the invasion of the western Europe. This attack (codenamed Operation Overlord) involves the 8th Infantry Regiment of the 4th Infantry division, which will land on Utah Beach and then join the american airborne units dropped the night before the assault.
On D-Day, June 6, 1944, soldiers of the 4th Infantry division capture Utah Beach very quickly. The landed troops meet paratroopers from the 82nd and 101st Airborne divisions. From that moment D-Day means success for those of the 4th Infantry division.
The 4th Inf. div. takes part in the conquest of the North part of the Cotentin peninsula, in Normandy. The city of Cherbourg represents a major objective for the Allied troops, because of its deep water harbor which would allow major landings. 26 days after D-Day, Cherbourg and its harbor are freed by the Americans, after hard fightings. But the harbor is completely out of order since the Germans destroyed the harbor installations: the Allies will have to wait some weeks before being able to use it.
Then the 4th Infantry division went to the South-East of Normandy. It is the first American division to reach Paris. Once Paris freed, the 4th Inf. div. took the direction of the North-East of France
Late september 1944, the division attacks the Germans toward Belgium and the Netherlands, where the fights are very difficult since the weather conditions are terrible.
During the Battle of the Bulge in the Ardennes, January 1945, the 4th Infantry division resists to the strong German counter-attacks and the German soldiers had to cross back the Rhein river.
Until May 8, 1945 (end of the fightings in Europe) the 4th Inf. div. will move toward Southern Germany.
Copyright (C) Hans Martin Nielsen - 2015