According to the information on the
front of the monument base, under the heading WORLD WAR II HISTORY:
The 103rd Infantry Division was
activated 15 November, 1942 -- Trained at Camp Claibourne, La. and
Camp Howse, Tx.
Many were transferred to combat duty
as replacements, early 1944 ASTP (Army college students), Air Corps
and others were assigned to bring the division up to strength.
Unit sailed 6 October 1944 from New
York, arrived Marseilles, France 20 October 1944.
Relieved the 3rd Infantry Division 8
November 1944. Took St. Die France, 23 November 1944. Fought with
7th Army over 500 miles in France (Alsace), Germany, and Austria, to
the Brenner Pass in Italy.
Liberated Kaufering Concentration
Camp, near Landsberg, Germany 27 April, 1945.
Engaged in 34 battles from Nov. 44
until May 45, including Alsace, France. Crossed into Germany 16
December 1944. Assaulted the Siegfried line Dec. 44 and again March
45, sustaining heavy casualties. In defensive positions near
Sarreguemines area during German operation “Northwind” that followed
the Battle of the Bulge. Crossed the Meurthe, Zintel, Lauter, Moder,
Rhine, and Danube Rivers.
The German 19th Army surrendered to
the Division 5, May 1945 at Innsbruck, Austria.
Deactivated 22 September,
On the back of the monument there’s the
following information: “TEXAS WW II HISTORICAL MONUMENT”
Sculpture “A Call to Duty” Dedicated
November 11, 2006. Donated to America and the City of Gainesville,
by the Texas WW II Historical Monument Fund and the 103rd Infantry
Division Assn. of WW II with the assistance of the City and citizens
of Gainesville, Texas; Gainesville VFW 1922; civic clubs of
Gainesville; Texas Land Commission; Texas Historical Commission;
Texas Veterans Commission; Texas Department of Transportation; and
many friends of the 103rd veterans.
On behalf of our generation we are
leaving this history for future generations. God Bless America, and
Keep Her Free.
On one side of the monument is this
information, under the heading “103rd INF DIV WW II”
Maj Gen Charles C. Haffner – Nov.
1942- Jan. 1945; Maj. Gen. Anthony C. “Nuts” McAuliffe – Jan. 1945 –
103rd Division Headquarters
409th Infantry Regiment
410th Infantry Regiment
411th Infantry Regiment
103rd MP Platoon
103rd Quartermaster Co.
103rd Reconnaissance Troop
103rd Signal Company
328th Combat Engineer BN
103rd Division Field Artillery
382nd Field Artillery BN
383rd Field Artillery BN
384th Field Artillery BN
928th Field Artillery BN
803rd Ordinance Co.
On the other side of the monument,
under the heading “CAMP HOWSE IN WORLD WAR II” is the following
The War Department activated Camp
Howse on August 17, 1942 as an Infantry training facility.
It covered 58,000 acres of rolling
plains northwest of Gainesville, in Cooke County, Texas.
The camp was designed as a temporary
post. Most buildings were single wall wood construction covered with
black tar paper. Troop Quarters buildings would sleep one platoon of
40 men and were heated by a simple coal stove at each end of the
During 1942-1946 three Infantry
Divisions and a number of smaller units (estimated at nearly 90,000
soldiers) received training there prior to combat action in Europe.
Beginning in 1943, the post also
served as a prisoner of war camp for nearly 3,000, mostly German,
prisoners. Camp Howse was one of 15 such camps. Prisoner
repatriation began in January 1946.
The camp was deemed surplus and
dismantled in the fall of 1946. The economic and social impact of
Camp Howse on Gainesville was instrumental in the town’s rapid
It also provided temporary housing for
the city during the housing shortage at the end of the war.
The land that composed the camp was
later offered for sale to its former owners.
Five large markers are fanned out
behind the sculpture, listing the names of more than 800 members of
the 103rd Infantry Division who lost their lives in World War II.