History only from the Free Republic!
Interesting history of National Guard:
In 1903, a piece of landmark legislation opened the way for increased modernization of, and Federal control over the National Guard. The law provided increased Federal funding, but to obtain it, National Guard units had to reach minimum strengths and be inspected by Regular Army officers. Guardsmen were required to attend 24 drills per year, and five days of annual training, for which they received pay for the first time.
In 1916, another act was passed, guaranteeing the state militias’ status as the Army’s primary reserve force, and requiring that all states rename their militia “National Guard.” The National Defense Act of 1916 prescribed qualifications for National Guard officers and allowed them to attend U.S. Army schools; required that each National Guard unit would be inspected and recognized by the War Department, and ordered that National Guard units would be organized like regular Army units. The act also specified that Guardsmen would be paid not just for annual training, but also for their drills.
The First World War
The National Defense Act of 1916 was passed while the Mexican bandit and revolutionary Pancho Villa was raiding the border towns of the Southwest. The entire National Guard was called to active duty by President Woodrow Wilson, and within four months, 158,000 Guardsmen were in place along the Mexican border.
Guardsmen stationed on the border in 1916 saw no action. But in the spring of 1917, the U.S. declared war on Germany and entered World War I, and the Guardsmen had a chance to put their training to good use.
The National Guard played a major role in World War I. Its units were organized into divisions by state, and those divisions made up 40% of the combat strength of the American Expeditionary Force. Three of the first five U.S. Army divisions to enter combat in World War I was from the National Guard. Further, the highest number of World War I Medals of Honor recipients were from the 30th Division, made up of National Guardsmen from the Carolinas and Tennessee.
Central to its success along with the 3rd Infantry Division, were the 26th, 28th, and 42nd Divisions,................................... The 42nd was one of the most decorated Divisions in WW I, they were again in action in 1945. I was at one of the cemeteries in France where there is a monument for those who served in WW I. The 42nd steamrolled any German division sent against them, but it was a mater of numbers. When you send in a 27,000 man division against a 10,000 maned division you gotta expect success. In WW II it was more like accepting the surrenders and taking names as they moved forward against light resistance unless it was an SS Unit. If my memory serves me correctly they were only in action from March to May. They did liberate a couple of Concentration Camps. It was one of their former officers that encouraged me to join the Guard after I came out of the Army. I spent a few years with the 42nd, then went over to the reserves where I felt like I was back in the Army. Doing job filling over seas was better than camping on Ft Drum every summer.(I do miss the great fishing up there.)
National Guard Music Video: “Warrior” by Kid Rock
Over There, George M. Cohan (motivational music, WWI)
Goodbye Broadway, Hello France — American Quartet
My late Maternal Grandfather was a Corporal in the Infantry in the 42nd. Wounded, but survived to live well into his 70s.