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The Gadget & First DSC

US Military History Throughout The Years

Short bits of history you know and some you may not!

  • Front Row Seat: Tuesday, July 12, 1864 – During the Battle of Fort Stevens during the Civil War, in the northwest of of Washington D.C, President Lincoln becomes the first standing President to view witness a battle.
  • Lead By Example: Wednesday, July 12, 1950 – With the Korean War not even a month old, the first Distinguished Service Cross is awarded posthumously to US Army Colonel Robert Martin. Col Martin was a decorated veteran, having fought in WW2, and was in command of the 34th Infantry Regiment during the Battle of Chonon, which occurred during the night of 7-8 July. This battle was the third engagement between US and North Korean forces in the new war. Along with the 24th Infantry Division the 34th Infanty Regiment would be tasked to delay the southern advancement of the North Korean 4th Infantry Division at the village of Chonan. Faced with superior numbers the US forces would be pushed back from their positions into the village and into intense urban combat. During the fighting Col Martin would lead his troops by example as the enemy pushed through his units forwards positions. While personally exposing himself to enemy troops and tanks he would engage and destroy an enemy tank with a rocket launcher at a range of only 15 yards. He would be killed during this and his body would never be recovered. During this battle the 3rd Battalion, 34th Infantry Regiment would nearly be destroyed and the North Koreans would push the US forces out of the area.
  • The Gadget: Monday, July 16, 1945 – Code Name Trinity, the first detonation of a nuclear device. At 5:29 am in the Jornada del Muerto desert the US Army would test a nuclear device for the first time under the Manhattan Project. “The Gadget”, as it was informally known, was of the same design as the Fat Boy bomb dropped later on Nagasaki. The device would explode with a yield of 22 kilotons of TNT and would begin the atomic age and help end WW2.

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