Oscar Griswold

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Oscar W. Griswold
Oscar Griswold.jpg
Lieutenant General Oscar Griswold
Born(1886-10-22)October 22, 1886
Ruby Valley, Nevada
DiedSeptember 28, 1959(1959-09-28) (aged 72)
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service1910–1947
RankUS-O9 insignia.svg Lieutenant General
Commands heldThird United States Army
Seventh United States Army
II Corps
XIV Corps
IV Corps
4th Infantry Division
Battles/warsWorld War I

World War II

AwardsArmy Distinguished Service Medal (2)
Navy Distinguished Service Medal
Legion of Merit
Silver Star (2)
Bronze Star
Air Medal
Purple Heart
Signature

Oscar Woolverton Griswold (22 October 1886 – 28 September 1959) was an American soldier and general in the first half of the 20th century. He is best known for his command of the XIV Corps in the South Pacific Area and South West Pacific Area during World War II.

Early life[edit]

Oscar Woolverton Griswold was born on 22 October 1886 in Ruby Valley Nevada. He attended the University of Nevada, Reno from 1905 to 1906, when he received an appointment to the United States Military Academy. On graduation with the West Point Class of 1910, he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Infantry.[1]

World War I[edit]

His early company grade assignments included three years service in China from 1914 to 1917. During World War I he served as a major and Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. 84th Infantry Division, American Expeditionary Force from 1918 to 1919, and participated in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive.[1]

Interwar years[edit]

He was assigned to the United States Military Academy from 1921 to 1924. He graduated from the Command and General Staff College in 1925, graduating 189th in the class of 258,[2] and the U.S. Army War College in 1929.[1]

From 1929 to 1931 he served with the War Department General Staff. This duty was followed by service with the United States Army Air Corps. He served as a member of the Infantry Board from 1932 to 1936, and from 1936 to 1939 was assigned to the Office, Chief of Infantry.[1]

World War II[edit]

Griswold commanded the 29th Infantry Regiment from September 1939 to October 1940. He was promoted to Brigadier General in October 1940 and became Commanding General of the Infantry Replacement Training Center at Camp Croft. Promoted to Major General in August 1941, he commanded 4th Infantry Division (United States).[1]

From April 1943, he was Commanding General of the XIV Corps, which fought in New Georgia, Bougainville and in the Philippines.

He was promoted to Lieutenant General in early 1945 [1] and continued to serve in the Pacific theater under Douglas MacArthur, during the battle of Manila in February 1945. In June 1945, General of the Army MacArthur nominated Griswold to command the Tenth United States Army following the death of Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner, Jr. in the Battle of Okinawa. However, he was passed over in favor of General Joseph Stilwell.[3]

Later life[edit]

After World War II Griswold served as Commanding General of the Seventh United States Army from 11 June 1946 to 15 March 1947,[4] and then the Third United States Army from 15 March 1947 to 14 April 1947.[5]

In October 1947, he retired to The Broadmoor resort in Colorado Springs, Colorado and resided in the Broadmoor Stadium Apartments. In 1948 he was employed by The Broadmoor Hotel Corporation as the Director of Athletic Events. These included ice hockey and figure skating in the Broadmoor Ice Palace (no longer extant). He also appeared in a television segment of This Is Your Life in December 1956 where he lauded the exploits of an Army Captain who refused to surrender in the Philippines and successfully led a guerilla campaign against the Japanese until he turned himself in to General Griswold during US Army combat operations. He remained employed by the Broadmoor until health problems caused him to retire. He died on 28 September 1959.[1][6]

Awards[edit]

Among General Griswold's many awards and decorations include the following:

Bronze oak leaf cluster
Army Distinguished Service Medal with one oak leaf clusters
Navy Distinguished Service Medal ribbon.svg Navy Distinguished Service Medal
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Silver Star with one oak leaf clusters
Legion of Merit ribbon.svg Legion of Merit
Bronze Star Medal ribbon.svg Bronze Star Medal
Air Medal ribbon.svg Air Medal
Purple Heart ribbon.svg Purple Heart[5]
World War I Victory Medal ribbon.svg Victory Medal
American Defense Service Medal ribbon.svg American Defense Service Medal
Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal ribbon.svg Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with two campaign stars
World War II Victory Medal ribbon.svg World War II Victory Medal
Army of Occupation ribbon.svg Army of Occupation Medal

In 1946 he received a Doctor of Laws from the University of Nevada, Reno.[1]

Dates of rank[edit]

Insignia Rank Component Date
No insignia Cadet USMA June 15, 1906
No insignia in 1910 Second Lieutenant Regular Army June 15, 1910
US-O2 insignia.svg
 First Lieutenant Regular Army July 1, 1916
US-O3 insignia.svg
 Captain Regular Army May 15, 1917
US-O4 insignia.svg
 Major National Army June 7, 1918
US-O5 insignia.svg
 Lieutenant Colonel National Army October 1, 1918
US-O4 insignia.svg
 Major Regular Army July 1, 1920
US-O5 insignia.svg
 Lieutenant Colonel Regular Army March 1, 1935
US-O6 insignia.svg
 Colonel Regular Army July 1, 1939
US-O7 insignia.svg
 Brigadier General Army of the United States October 1, 1940
US-O8 insignia.svg
 Major General Army of the United States August 5, 1941
US-O7 insignia.svg
 Brigadier General Regular Army March 1, 1944
US-O9 insignia.svg
 Lieutenant General Army of the United States April 14, 1945
US-O8 insignia.svg
 Major General Regular Army December 1, 1946
US-O9 insignia.svg
 Lieutenant General Retired List October 31, 1947

[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Ancell, R. Manning; Miller, Christine (1996), The Biographical Dictionary of World War II Generals and Flag Officers: The US Armed Forces, Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, pp. 123–124, ISBN 0-313-29546-8
  2. ^ Dr. Robert H. Berlin, U.S. Army World War II Corps Commanders: A Composite Biography Archived 2006-06-11 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ James, D. Clayton (1975), The Years of MacArthur, II: 1941–1945, Boston: Houghton Mifflin, pp. 735–736, ISBN 0-395-20446-1
  4. ^ Seventh Army / USAEUR commander bios
  5. ^ a b Third Army / ARCENT commander bios
  6. ^ Robert "Rusty" Lomax, subordinate to General Griswold from 1948 to 1956.
  7. ^ Official Register of Commissioned Officers of the United States Army, 1948. pg. 2219.
Military offices
Preceded by
Major General Lloyd R. Fredendall
Commanding General of the 4th Infantry Division (Mechanised)
18 August 1941 to 7 October 1941
Succeeded by
Major General Fred C. Wallace
Preceded by
Lieutenant General (then Major General) Alexander M. Patch
Commanding General of the XIV Corps
26 April 1943 to 31 December 1945?
Succeeded by
Disbanded
Preceded by
Geoffrey Keyes
Commanding General of the Seventh United States Army
11 June 1946 to 15 March 1947
Succeeded by
Manton S. Eddy
Preceded by
Ernest N. Harmon
Commanding General of the Third United States Army
15 March 1947 to 14 April 1947
Succeeded by
Edward H. Brooks