WORLD WAR 1

A series of rare photos depicting the 8th Infantry are now available by clicking HERE.

The Eighth was again mustered into Federal service on 3 August 1917 under the command of Franklin A. Denison and drafted into the War on 5 August 1917 by Proclamation of the President of the United States. On 1 December 1917, while participating in the war campaign the unit was reorganized and redesignated as the 370th Infantry and assigned to the 185th Infantry Brigade which was assigned to the 93 Division (Provisional) on 5 January 1918.

During World War 1, as the 370th Infantry, U.S., it served with distinction with the French 34th, 36th and 59th Infantry Divisions earning streamers for battles of Lorraine and Olse-Aisne. Sectors occupied and engagements participated in were Saint Mihiel with the French in 1918, Argonne Forest, St. Gobain Forest, Bosi de Mortier, Mont des Signes, Olse-Aisne Canal, Laon, Grandlup, Soissons, and Olse-Aisne and Lorraine offensives. One Battalion of the Regiment, under the command of Lt. Col. Otis B. Duncan, was engaged in pursuit of the retreating enemy far in advance, when halted by Armistice.

Company 'C,' under the command of Captain James C. Smith, was decorated with the French Croix de Guerre for conspicuous bravery and courage in battle. This is one of three instances where each officer and enlisted man of an infantry company were so decorated.

On 8 May 1918 the unit was relieved of assignment to the 185th Brigade and demobilized 11 March 1919 at Camp Grant, IL (near Rockford).

The Regiment was again reorganized in June 1919 in the Illinois National Guard as the Eighth Infantry Regiment and the Headquarters were again Federally recognized 25 August 1921 at Springfield. Headquarters were changed to Chicago on 23 July 1929.

Intensive peacetime training was again pursued. The Regiment attended all field training encampments including the significant Second Amy Maneuvers of 1936 and 1940.

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