35th Infantry in the Hawaiian Division
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The 35th Infantry Regiment
The Hawaiian Division, Schofield
And the Formation of the 25th
|Maj John M. Schofield, Commanding
General of the US Armyís Pacific Division, visited the
Hawaiian Islands, in 1872, to determine the defense
capabilities of its ports. He determined that a harbor
could be formed at the mouth of the Pearl River.
Military units started moving to the islands after the
annexation of Hawaii by the United States, in 1898.
In 1905, a temporary camp was set up for the
Organized Militia, later to become the National Guard.
The role of the Army was the protection of the Navy
while in port. In November of 1908, the first two
squadrons of the 5th Cavalry Regiment
arrived. This influx of troops gave the impetus to
further construction of the facilities there. Captain
Joseph C. Castner followed the Cav in December, bringing
with him the plans to begin what is now known as
||The following April, the
War Department officially named the post Schofield
barracks in honor of General Schofield, who had first
reviewed the strategic importance of the area. However,
it was referred to locally as "Castner
Village", in reference to the efforts of Captain
Castnerís efforts to create to post.
In 1911, the Secretary of War approved plans for
further construction and troop build-up at Schofield
Barracks. The plans called for five infantry regiments,
and one each of cavalry and field artillery. While those
plans were later altered, permanent quarters were needed
for the four regiments already on post. The first
permanent structures on post, which still exist today,
were the quadrangle barracks.
|With the war in Europe
raging, all of the troops stationed at Schofield
Barracks were deployed in 1917. Construction at the post
was halted during the war and did not begin anew until
the early 1920ís.
||On September 25, 1920, the
35th Infantry Regiment was assigned to duty
at Schofield Barracks.
In February of 1921, the Hawaiian Division, also know
as the "Pineapple Army", was established, to
provide land defense of the territory strategically
located at "the crossroads of the Pacific". It
was built from units of the old World War 1, 11th
Infantry Division. The Hawaiian Division soldiers wore
the Taro Leaf shoulder patch which would later pass down
to two new divisions
Hawaiian Division camp prior to the
formation of the 25th Infantry Division
The Hawaiian Division was formed under the structure
used in WW1, that is two infantry brigades consisting of
two infantry regiments each, and a brigade of artillery.
The 35th Infantry was officially assigned
to the Hawaiian Division on 17 October, 1922. She would
serve here, under the idyllic climes of Hawaii, for the
next 20 years.
Last Review of the Hawaiian Div.
wearing "wrapped" leggings
In 1940, the Army determined that the structure of
the old "square" division was too cumbersome
and the decision was made to reorganize the Hawaiian
Division into two new "triangular" divisions.
On 1 October, 1941, these two divisions, the 24th
and 25th Infantry Divisions were formed from
units of the Hawaiian Division. The 19th and 21st
Infantry Regiments and the 11th and 13th Field Artillery
were assigned to the 24th Division. The 27th and 35th
Infantry Regiments and the 8th Field Artillery were
assigned to the 25th Division. The Hawaiian Division's
support units consisting primarily of an engineer
regiment; a quartermaster regiment and a medical
regiment were reorganized into separate battalions and
assigned to the two new divisions.
To convert one square division into two triangular
organizations required two extra infantry regiments, and
the 298th and 299th, both from the Hawaiian National
Guard, were selected. These units had a high number of
enlisted personnel, and some officers of Japanese
descent. With the involvement of Japan in the war,
distrust of their national loyalties caused the War
Department to order the 298th to be replaced in the 25th
Division by the 161st Infantry of the Washington
National Guard. The soldiers of Japanese heritage in the
298th and 299th were withdrawn from their regiments and
formed into a provisional infantry battalion, which
later became the 100th Infantry Battalion, a highly
decorated unit that served in the European Theater.
The taro leaf, used to make poi, a basic food staple
in the native diet, and symbolic of Hawaii, was
contained in the shoulder patch of the Hawaiian
Division. This symbol would be adopted by both the 24th
and 25th Infantry divisions.
25th Infantry Division
Early designs of the 25th
Infantry Divisionís shoulder patch were a taro leaf
without the lightning bolt we see today. The Division
had used "Lightning" as the code word for its
Division Headquarters on its arrival on Guadalcanal in
December of 1942. The Japanese found it difficult to
pronounce the letter "L". The Marines also
called the unit the "Lightning Division". In
addition, the 25th also earned its nickname
from the "lightning" way it concluded its
operations on Guadalcanal. The "Lightning
Division" later became known as the "Tropic
Lightning." The shoulder patch of the 25th
Infantry was officially adopted by the War Department on
7 June, 1944. The final design was a red and yellow taro
leaf, the colors of the late Hawaiian Monarchy, to
recognize the 25th Division's ties to Hawaii and the old
Hawaiian Division, with a lightning bolt superimposed,
representative of the Division's nickname.
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