6TH ARMORED DIVISION
World War II
Activated: 15 February 1942. Overseas: 11 February 1944. Campaigns: Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, Central Europe. Days of combat: 272. Distinguished Unit Citations: 4. Awards: MH-1 ; DSC-24 ; DSM-3 ; SS-807 ; LM-23; DFC-1 ; SM-24 ; BSM-6,406 ; AM-105. Commanders: Maj. Gen. William H. H. Morris, Jr. (February 1942-May 1943), Maj. Gen. Robert W. Grow (May 1943-29 April 1945), Brig. Gen. George W. Read Jr. (30 April 1945-31 May 1945), Maj. Gen. Robert w. Grow (1 June 1945-30 June 1945), Brig. Gen. George W. Read, Jr. (1 July 1945 to inactivation). Returned to U. S. and inactivated: 18 September 1945.
After continuing its training in England, the 6th Armored Division landed on Utah Beach in Normandy, 18 July 1944, and went on the offensive in the Cotentin Peninsula, driving through Avranches, and moving on to take part in the liberation of Brest and the clearing of the Brittany Peninsula. In mid-August the Division moved down to Lorient. The 6th then turned east and cut across France, reaching the Saar in November. It crossed the Nied River 11-12 November, against strong opposition, reaching the German border on 6 December, and established and maintained defensive positions in the vicinity of Saarbrucken. On 23 December the Division was ordered north of Metz to take part in the Battle of the Bulge, and took over a sector along the south bank of the Sauer River. The 6th was heavily engaged in the battle for Bastogne, finally driving the enemy back across the our River into Germany by late January. After a short period of rehabilitation, the Division resumed the offensive, penetrated the Siegfried Line, crossed the Prum, reached the Rhine River at Worms 21 March, and set up a counterreconnaissance screen along its west bank. The 6th crossed the Rhine at Oppenheim 25 March, drove on to Frankfurt, crossed the Main, captured BadNauheim, and continued to advance eastward, and surrounded and captured Muhlhausen 4-5 April 1945. After repulsing a light counterattack, it moved forward 60 miles to cross the Saale River and assisted in freeing Allied prisoners of war and the notorious German Concentration Camp at Buchenwald. The Division raced on, took Leipzig, crossed the Mulde River at Rochlitz 15 April 1945, and stopped, pending the arrival of the Russian Army.
Defensive positions along the Mulde River were held until the end of hostilities in Europe.
Assignments in the ETO*
3 March 1944: VIII Corps, Third Army. 9 March 1944: XX Corps. 25 July 1944: Third Army, but attached to VIII Corps, First Army. 1 August 1944: VIII Corps, Third Army, 12th Army Group. 5 September 1944: Ninth Army, 12th Army Group. 16 September 1944: Third Army, 12th Army Group. 20 September 1944: XII Corps. 11 December 1944: III Corps. 18 December 1944: XII Corps. 21 December 1944: XX Corps. 25 December 1944: XII Corps. 28 December 1944: III Corps. 11 February 1945: VIII Corps. 8 March 1945: XV Corps, Seventh Army, 6th Army Group. 23 March 1945: XX Corps, Third Army, 12th Army Group. 24 March 1945: XII Corps. 28 March 1945: XX Corps. 17 April 1945: VIII Corps. 22 April 1945: VIII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group. 6 May 1945: VIII Corps, Ninth Army, 12th Army Group.
Nickname: Super Sixth. Shoulder patch: Same as the 1st Armored, but with number "6" in upper portion of triangle. Association: 6th Armored Division Association (Col. George W. Read, Jr.), Army Field Forces Bd. No. 2, Fort Knox, Ky. Publications: Combat History of the 6th Armored Division; by unit members ; Ripple Publishing Co., Yadkinville, N. C. ; 1946. Combat Record of the Sixth Armored Division in the ETO; 6th Armored Division. Brest to Bastogne; The Story of the Sixth Armored Division; 6th Armored Division Information and Education Division, ETOUSA, 1945. 32 pp.
[Nota Bene: These combat chronicles, current as of October 1948, are reproduced from The Army Almanac: A Book of Facts Concerning the Army of the United States, U.S. Government Printing Office, 1950, pp. 510-592.]
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