Eisenhower Military Chronology



Eisenhower leaves his hometown, Abilene, Kansas to enter the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York.


World War I erupts in Europe.


Eisenhower graduates from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, 61st in a class of 164. In mid-September he reports to the 19th Infantry Regiment at Fort Sam Houston, Texas.


On April 6, the United States declares war on Germany. Eisenhower is promoted to captain and in September he is sent to Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia to train officer candidates. In December he is sent to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas to serve as an instructor.


Eisenhower is appointed to his first independent command at Camp Colt, an Army Tank Corps training center in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. He receives a temporary promotion to major, and then to lt. colonel on Oct. 14. World War I ends November 11.


Eisenhower is assigned to Camp Meade, Maryland. He volunteers for an Army convoy that spends the summer traveling across the U.S. along the Lincoln Highway (U.S. Highway 30) to study the time it takes to move military equipment from coast to coast.


Eisenhower is returned to the permanent rank of captain in a post-war reduction in rank. In August he is promoted to the rank of major.


Eisenhower graduates from Infantry Tank School and is assigned command of the 301st Tank Battalion.


Eisenhower joins the 20th Infantry Brigade at Camp Gaillard, Panama under General Fox Connor. He receives the Distinguished Service Medal for his work in World War I.


Eisenhower returns to Camp Meade, Maryland to coach football. He is temporarily assigned to Ft. Logan, Colorado as a recruiter.


Eisenhower attends Command and General Staff School, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, graduating first in a class of 275.


Eisenhower serves as executive officer, 24th Infantry, Fort Benning, Georgia and coaches football. In December he reports to Washington, D.C. to work for the Battle Monuments Commission under General Pershing.


Eisenhower writes a battlefield guide to American involvement in World War I. In September Eisenhower enters the Army War College, Fort McNair, Washington, D.C.


Eisenhower graduates from the War College in June. In August he travels to Paris, France, as a member of the Battle Monuments Commission to revise the battlefield guidebook and gain first-hand familiarity with the battlefields of World War I.


In November Eisenhower is assigned to the Office of Assistant Secretary of War to prepare plans for the mobilization of American industry and manpower in case of future war.


Eisenhower becomes General MacArthur's personal assistant in February.


Eisenhower is sent to the Philippines with MacArthur to prepare the Filipino Army for independence.


Eisenhower is promoted to lieutenant colonel with the rest of his West Point class.


Germany invades Poland on September 1 beginning World War II. Eisenhower leaves the Philippines for San Francisco in December.


Eisenhower becomes Chief of Staff of the Third Division at Fort Lewis, Washington and conducts field maneuvers.


Eisenhower is transferred to Fort Sam Houston, Texas, as Chief of Staff, Third Army. He participates in the Louisiana Maneuvers in August and receives a temporary promotion to brigadier general. The Japanese attack Pearl Harbor on December 7 and the United States enters World War II. General Marshall calls Eisenhower to Washington, D.C. to review the Philippines situation and work in the War Department.


Eisenhower is named Assistant Chief of Staff in charge of War Plans. He receives a temporary promotion to major general in March and is named Assistant Chief of Staff of the New Operations Division. Eisenhower arrives in London in May to study joint defense and is appointed Commander of the European Theatre of Operations on June 15. He receives a temporary promotion to lieutenant general in July. On November 8 Eisenhower commands the Allied invasion of North Africa.


Eisenhower is promoted to temporary rank of full general in February. He completes the invasion of North Africa in May and directs the invasion of Sicily in July and August. Eisenhower receives permanent promotion to brigadier general and major general on August 30. Eisenhower commands the invasion of Italy in September and attends the Cairo Conference in November. In December Eisenhower is appointed Supreme Commander of Allied Expeditionary Forces to command Operation Overlord, the invasion of Europe.


Eisenhower arrives in London in January to set up Supreme Headquarters. He directs the invasion of Normandy on June 6, D-day. On December 20 Eisenhower is promoted to General of the Army and receives his fifth star.


Eisenhower accepts Germany's unconditional surrender on May 7 and is appointed commander of the United States occupation zone in Germany. In November Eisenhower returns to the United States to become Chief of Staff, United States Army.


Eisenhower retires from active service in February and writes Crusade in Europe. While serving as President of Columbia University, in December, Eisenhower begins three months service as a military consultant to the first Secretary of Defense, James Forrestal.


In an informal capacity, Eisenhower serves as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under the newly created defense department.


The Korean War begins on June 25. On December 18, at the request of President Truman and the 12 NATO nations, Eisenhower accepts the position of Supreme Commander of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.


In January Eisenhower leaves for NATO headquarters in Paris.


Eisenhower resigns as Supreme Commander in June to return to the United States to campaign for the presidency. After the election, Eisenhower visits Korea. He resigns his commission as General of the Army to assume the presidency.


On completion of his second term, Congress re-instates his five-star rank.


Eisenhower dies March 28 and is buried with full military honors in Abilene, Kansas.



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