WASHINGTON OFFICE:
2184 RAYBURN HOUSE OFFICE BUILDING
Washington, DC 20515-2403
(202)225-5031
COMMITTEES:
VETERANS'AFFAIR
RANKING MINORITY MEMBER

NATIONAL SECURITY

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT:
ANDRE CLEMANDOT

G.V. 'SONNY" MONTGOMERY
3D District, Mississippi
Congress of the United States
House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515-2403
District OFFICES:
2100 Ninth St. Room 302
MERIDAN. MS 39301
(601) 693-6681
2080 AIRPORT ROAD. Suit D
COLUMBUS, MS 39701
(601)327-2766

110-D Airport Road
PEARL, MS 39206
(801)932-2410

June 4, 1996

Mr. Robert W. Pearl
President
150th Combat Engineer Btln Association

Dear Bob:
  Please find attached a letter I have just received from the Department of the Army in reply to my inquiry on your behalf.
  I believe you will find the report self-explanatory; however, should you have ftirther questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact me.
  It has been a pleasure to have been of service to you in this matter and I hope you will continue to call upon me, as your representative in Congress, whenever you require assistance with matters affecting the Federal Government.

With warm regards, I am

                                                                                 Sincerely,
 

                                                                               GILLESPIE V. MONTGOMERY
                                                                              Member of Congress
 

GVM:sj
Enclosure







Page 2 (Enclosure)
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
THE CENTER OF MILITARY HISTORY
1099 14TH STREET NW
WASHINGTON DC 20005-3402







REPLY TO
ATTENTION OF                                              May 24, 1996

Organizational History Branch
 

Honorable Gillespie V. Montgomery
Representative in Congress
2184 Rayburn House Office Building
Washingngton, DC 20515-2403

Dear Mr. Montgomery:

This is in response to your request of May 8, 1996, on behalf of your constituent Robert W. Pearl, concerning the 150th Engineer Battalion.

The 150th Engineer Combat Battalion, with which Mr. Pearl served during World War II, was activated on February 25, 1943, Fort Devens, Massachusetts, and inactivated on October 29, 1945, at Camp Shanks, New York. The battalion fought in five campaigns in Europe during the war (Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, and Central Europe) and was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation for its actions on the Sauer and Our Rivers in Luxembourg and Germany between February 7 and February 13, 1945. After the war, the battalion served briefly in the Organized Reserves at Boston, Massachusetts, between March 22, 1949, and June 30, 1950. It has not been active since that time.

There is no relationship Battalion of World War II and Mississippi. The history and Honors of National Guard Units are traced at the local level between the 150th Engineer Combat the current battalion in honors of Army National Guard units within a particular state. The number 150 was allotted to the Mississippi Army National Guard in 1954 for a transportation battalion, which, in 1980, became a quartermaster battalion, and in 1994 became the headquarters company of a new engineer battalion. The battalion's other companies were organized from new and existing units in Mississippi. Its Company B, for example, displays a silver band for service in Southwest Asia as an element of the 786th Transportation Company. Except for the coincidence of sharing the same number, there is no connection between the current and former engineer battalions.

Under Army regulations there is a provision for the Secretary of the Army to reconstitute a disbanded Army National Guard organization at the request of the state. The state's clear intent to perpetuate the older organization creates the official link between the disbanded and reconstituted organization. In this case, however, the battalion desired to be reconstituted was allotted to the Organized Reserves (now designated as the Army Reserve) with no previous link to Mississippi. There is also a provision in the regulations that on rare occasions the Secretary might grant an active organization the honors of a disbanded organization as "a challenge and trust." Since such an endowment would not establish a lineal link between the two units, the honors could be displayed on the battalion colors, but the unit members would not be authorized to wear ribbons associated with such honors. We have no record that the former 150th Engineer Combat Battalion was ever authorized colors; the current battalion carries colors that were originally authorized for the 150th Transportation Battalion. The state of Mississippi may request, through the National Guard Bureau, the honors of the former 150th Engineer Combat Battalion as "a challenge and trust." The request should include substantial justification for such an unusual action to be approved.

I hope this information is useful to your constituent. Your correspondence is returned.
 


Sincerely,


                                                                   John T. Greenwood
                                                                  Chief, Field Programs and
                                                                 Historical Services Division
 

Enclosure

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