African Americans in the United States Army in World War II


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About the Book

The political, economic and social landscapes of the United States in the early 1940s were split by one overriding factor—race. This book explores the ways this separation extended to the military forces and the impact segregation had on World War II. Beginning with an overview of African Americans and the military from the inception of the United States and a brief history of the African American role in World War I, the focus moves to between-the-wars movements such as the Protective Mobilization Plan promoting racial integration of the military.
The main focus is the African American role in World War II and the stigma that remained despite their valor. Groups discussed include the Women’s Army Corps; tank destroyers; separate infantry regiments such as the 24th, 65th, 364th, 366th and 372nd; and the 2nd cavalry. Also included is a list of African American World War II veterans belatedly (and mostly posthumously) awarded medals of honor on January 13, 1997.

About the Author(s)

Bryan D. Booker is an assistant professor of history at St. Augustine’s College in Raleigh, North Carolina and an adjunct professor of history at Fayetteville State University. He retired from the army as a chief warrant officer and lives in Garner, North Carolina.

Bibliographic Details

Bryan D. Booker
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 366
Bibliographic Info: 37 photos, tables, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012 [2008]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6904-8
eISBN: 978-0-7864-9172-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1

Introduction—“The Good War”      5

I. World War I      11

II. Between the Wars      32

III. The African American Press      52

IV. Combat Service Support Units      60

Early Deployments—Pacific Theater      68

Liberia Task Force      75

Road Builders      76

Combat Service Support Deployments      83

Truck Drivers—The Red Ball Express      85

Combat Support Units      87

V. Women’s Army Corps      96

6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion      105

Demobilization      108

VI. Artillery      111

Antiaircraft Artillery      127

VII. Tank Destroyers      131

VIII. Separate Infantry Regiments      145

24th Infantry Regiment      146

364th Infantry Regiment      150

366th and 372nd Infantry Regiments      159

65th Infantry Regiment (Puerto Rico)      160

IX. Paratroopers      162

X. 2nd Cavalry and 93rd Infantry Divisions      167

Army Divisions      167

2nd Cavalry Division      168

93rd Infantry Division      172

XI. 92nd Infantry Division      192

366th Infantry Regiment      210

December Offensive      212

Operation Fourth Term      223

Reorganization      247

Operation Second Wind      252

XII. Combat Infantry Replacements      274

XIII. Armored Forces      285

761st Tank Battalion      288

Camp Hood, Texas      290

Deployment to War      293

Baptism by Fire      295

Aftermath.      323

XIV. Conclusion      329

Appendix: The Medal of Honor      335

Chapter Notes      339

Bibliography      353

Index      357

Book Reviews & Awards

“highly recommended”—ARBA; “a new valuable, and important study of the men and women who faithfully served their nation despite national and institutional racism…an excellent primer for students and scholars”—The North Carolina Historical Review; “valuable”—The NYMAS Review; “rich with oral histories and thoroughly referenced by government records”—Reference & Research Book News.