Second United States Army

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Second United States Army
US Second Army.svg
Second United States Army shoulder sleeve insignia
Active 15 October 1918 – 15 April 1919;
20 October 1933 – 1 January 1966;
1 October 2010 – present
Allegiance  United States of America
Branch  United States Army
Type Regular Army
Role Field Army
Motto "Second To None"
Engagements World War I

William Simpson
Leonard T. Gerow
Edward H. Brooks

George Windle Read, Jr.
Distinctive Unit Insignia 2nd Army DUI.jpg

Second United States Army is currently a Direct Reporting Unit to Headquarters U.S. Army, Chief Information Officer (CIO)/G-6. Under the G-6, Second Army is responsible for the execution of administrative, policy, management, architecture, and has compliance responsibilities. Originally formed 15 October 1918 during World War I, it functioned as a training and administrative headquarters until being deactivated 15 April 1919. It operated 1933 to 1966, training and organizing troops for overseas deployment during World War II. It later operated under U.S. Army Forces Command as a regional command to control Army Reserve forces 1983 to 1995. Second Army was reactivated on 1 October 2010 as U.S. Army Cyber Command. On 6 March 2014, HQDA General Order No. 2014-02 activated Second Army as a direct reporting unit of the CIO/G-6 with Commander, U.S. Army Cyber Command, as the Second Army Commander.[1]

Second Army is based at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.[2] There are plans for the command to move to Fort Gordon, in Augusta, Georgia home of the service's Signal Center and Signal Corps.[3]


World War I[edit]

Second Army's task during the First World War was to hold the line a short distance east of the Moselle River in France following the end of the Saint-Mihiel offensive along the Western Front. The army was also tasked with reinforcing units from the active-in-combat soldiers of the U.S. First Army.

On November 9, 1918, Second Army was responsible for a frontline sector of 50 kilometers, held by four divisions totaling 43,000 men.[4] These divisions from left to right were the 33rd Division (Illinois Army National Guard), 28th Division (Pennsylvania National Guard), U.S. 7th Division (a regular formation) and 92nd Division (a Colored formation). In reserve were the 4th Division (a regular formation) and the 35th Division (Missouri and Kansas National Guard). One brigade of the 88th Division, a National Army formation raised in Minnesota and North Dakota, had just arrived at the front.

On 10 November, Second Army advanced on German positions, already in disorder and retreating. Word did not reach the units advancing until after eleven-hundred hours on 11 November, making it one of the last formations to fight to the very conclusion of the war. On 15 April 1919, Second Army was deactivated.

World War II[edit]

Second United States Army was reactivated on 1 October 1933 under a plan developed by then-Army Chief of Staff Douglas MacArthur to consolidate forces in the continental United States under four regional army commands.[5] It was headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee. In 1940, with the activation of Army General Headquarters (succeeded by Army Ground Forces in 1942), the four field armies were given responsibility for training forces in their respective areas and conducting maneuvers to evaluate training and readiness. In September 1941, Second U.S. Army participated in large-scale maneuvers pitting it against Third United States Army in what were known as the Louisiana Maneuvers.[6] Over 350,000 troops took part. Also in 1941, four regional defense commands were established coterminous with the army areas, and the Commander, Second U.S. Army became also Commanding General, Central Defense Command.

With First and Fourth Armies given primary responsibility for defense of the eastern and western coasts of the United States, and later with First Army's relocation to England to command U.S. Army forces in the invasion of France, Second and Third Armies assumed increasing responsibility for the training and organization of the rapidly expanding army and preparing troops for overseas deployment. When Third Army headquarters was relocated to France in 1944 to serve as a combat command, Second Army assumed its stateside responsibilities as well.

Second U.S. Army was commanded from 1940 to 1943 by Lt. Gen. Ben Lear. He was succeeded by Lt. Gen. Lloyd Fredendall after Fredendall's removal from command in North Africa. General Fredendall held command until war's end.

Post-World War II[edit]

In November 1964, as an effort to reorganize military operations, the Department of the Army announced the closure of Fort Jay at Governors Island New York and the relocation of U.S. First Army to Fort Meade, Maryland. First and Second Armies would merge and Second Army subsequently inactivated. It had been proposed that First Army be inactivated, but its commander Lt. General Robert W. Porter, Jr. strongly protested the proposal and it was dropped. In the end, Second Army headquarters staff were retained and became the new staff for U.S. First Army. On 1 January 1966 at Fort Meade, Second Army was deactivated and its colors cased by commander, Lt. General William F. Train who then assumed command of U.S. First Army.

Second Army was reactivated on 1 October 1983 under U.S. Army Forces Command as a regional command to control Army Reserve forces in the southeastern United States, including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. It was headquartered at Fort Gillem, Georgia. It was again deactivated on 3 July 1995 with First Army once again assuming its functions. First Army was then relocated to Fort Gillem.

Past Commanders[edit]

Date Began Date Ended Commanding General
15 October 1918 15 April 1919 Robert Lee Bullard
20 October 1939 25 April 1943 Ben Lear
25 April 1943 7 May 1945 Lloyd Fredendall
1945 October 1946 November William Simpson
1948 January 1950 July Leonard T. Gerow
10 August 1950 11 April 1951 James Alward Van Fleet
11 April 1951 1953 April Edward H. Brooks
1953 1956 Floyd L. Parks
1957 1960 George Windle Read, Jr.
1960 1962 Ridgely Gaither
1964 1 January 1966 William F. Train
2010 2013 Rhett A. Hernandez
2013 present Edward C. Cardon


  1. ^ The Relationship of U. S. Army Cyber Command and Second Army, U.S. Army Cyber Command Homepage, last accessed 12 January 2015
  2. ^ US Army (1 October 2010). "Army establishes Army Cyber Command". Retrieved 27 December 2010. 
  3. ^ "Army Settles On Augusta For Cyber Forces Headquarters". 20 December 2013. Retrieved 22 December 2013. 
  4. ^ Second Army Operations, accessed July 2014
  5. ^ [1] Army Ground Forces, Study No. 1
  6. ^ [2] Army Ground Forces, Study No. 1
  • Ray, Max (1980). The History of the First United States Army From 1918 to 1980. Fort Meade MD: First United States Army. pp. 120, 124. 

External links[edit]