42nd Infantry “Rainbow” Division to be 100 years old
The renowned 42nd Division will celebrate its 100th anniversary Aug 2017. (Go to www.rainbowvets.org and read about the Divisions history). The 42nd has a prominent place in US history as the FIRST National Guard Division mobilized and sent to combat overseas. The Rainbow Divisions formation in 1917 is predicated on many of the provisions passed in the National Defense Act of 1916 where as the expansion of the National Guard gave the President authority for the first time to activate National Guard units for federal duty among other authorities. This gave rise to the idea to form an Army Division out of National Guard units from around the country. The idea had many positive aspects. First, our Nation was in need of manpower as they prepared to enter WWI. Two, many of the National Guard units had experience from the boarder wars with Poncho Villa and were thought to be well prepared to take on additional training for combat. Three, bringing units together from 26 different States would help bring support for the war effort; hence the 42nd Division was born! The National Guard units that made up the 42nd came from across the country and assembled at Camp Mills in what is now Garden City Long Island. Garden City is home to one of our largest memorials to 42nd Veterans of WWI. We will celebrate the Division’s anniversary at the memorial in 2017.
In honor of the WWI Centennial and the 42nd Division the RDVF will host a trip to France in 2018. The information below is a “save the date flyer” for those that want to attend. WHEN DETAILS ARE FULLY KNOWN YOU WILL BE ABLE TO SIGN UP FOR THE TRIP BY SELECTING THE UPCOMMING EVENTS TAB AT WWW.RAINBOWVET.ORG