Long out of print, From Texas to Rome is the diary of Major General Fred Walker, commander of the 36th Division from Sept 1940 to July 1944. The Texas Military Forces museum has teamed up with Savas Beatie publisher to offer an ebook version for sale, with 45 percent of the proceeds going to the museum foundation. This is a must read… Well-written, compelling, insightful…. You can’t understand the history of the division or the Texas Military Forces without reading this book. You can order at the link below.

https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=ynAbBAAAQBAJ&rdid=book-ynAbBAAAQBAJ&rdot=1&source=gbs_vpt_read&pcampaignid=books_booksearch_viewport

A couple of great pictures from a recently donated scrapbook. They show a train with 36th Infantry Division soldiers on their way home after WWI. Date is likely May/June 1919. Note the T-Patch drawing on the rail car.

Hands on History event is tonight! You can pick up and handle original weapons from the Texas Revolution through a modern M4. Cost is $5 a person for anyone 6 and older. We hope to see you this evening. 
512-782-5659 for more information

Hands on History event is tonight! You can pick up and handle original weapons from the Texas Revolution through a modern M4. Cost is $5 a person for anyone 6 and older. We hope to see you this evening. 

512-782-5659 for more information

We are getting ready to catalog a photographic collection of over 100 pictures taken by Arthur Patterson, with Company L, 141st Inf. The pictures date from WWI. Here is a small sample of the collection

1. a great shot of a tent city 

2. Tom Miller Dam here in Austin, know as Austin Dam at the time

3. a mobile wine distillery in France

4. Co. L headquarters somewhere in France note the “t-patch”


5. One of the football games played by the 36th in France


6. a group of soldiers, mostly French at a shooting/rifle match

We cataloged some great WWII era posters a couple of months back. Some are from the Department of Defense Transportation, some from OWI etc.. The “V” home project was a campaign to get families to conserve and reuse as much as possible.  Here is a description of a “V-Home”:

"This is a V-Home.

We in this home are fighting. We know that this war will be easy to lose and hard to win. We mean to win it. Therefore, we solemnly pledge all our energies and all our resources to fight for freedom, and against fascism. We serve notice to all that we are personally carrying the fight to the enemy in these ways:

This home follows the instructions of its air raid warden in order to protect itself against attack by air.

This home conserves food, clothing, transportation, and health in order to hasten an unceasing flow of war materials to our men at the front.

This home salvages essential materials in order that they may be converted to immediate war uses.

This home refuses to spread rumors designed to divide our nation.

This home buys war savings stamps and bonds regularly.

We are doing these things because we know we must to win this war.”

On May 24, 2014, in Terelle, Italy a Ceremony was held to unveil a memorial stone dedicated to the memory of Clinton W. Thomas and the men of the 142nd Infantry Regiment, 36th Infantry Division. Pvt. Thomas and several others were reported missing in action on 3rd, February 1944 while they were fighting in the area of Terelle. It was in the first battle of Cassino. Private Clinton Thomas’s dog tag was found in 2010 during some preliminary surveys by the Associazione Linea Gustav. The tag was  later sent to his relatives in Tennessee. The memorial stone was done by the Gustav Line Association in cooperation with the Township of Terelle; the ceremony was attended by the Military Attaché of the American Embassy in Rome, COL Phillip R. Cuccia.

Pvt. Clinton Wallace Thomas was listed initially as “Missing in Action” but later in the National Archive records for WWII his is listed as “ FOD”, this stand for “finding of death”. It means his body was never recovered but he was presumed dead after having been missing for at least one year. The file card we have shows an end date of Feb. 3rd, 1944 with Company H of the 142nd Infantry. This means he likely went missing on Feb. 2nd or 3rd. 1944. The AAR for the 142nd for these dates shows : “the morning of Feb. 2nd, the 2nd battalion (which includes Co. H) was on Mass Manna-Hill 862 was facing enemy small arms fire. On the night of Feb. 2-3rd there was heavy machine gun and mortar fire with heavy causalities in Co.F and G.”

Tension with Mexico and protecting the border have been a recurring theme here in Texas since the 1830’s. Below is a series of telegrams recording the call by the United States Secretary of War to the Governor and Adjutant General of Texas in May 1916 to place Texas National Guard troops on the border. Line 4 in the letter from the Adjutant General to Mr. Mark Carlton of Tenn. is a classic. 

Found this interesting photograph today from the 111th FS, Texas Air National Guard - Yes, that is Leslie Nielsen of “Airplane” fame. The officer in the center in the flight suit with the 1000 hours patch is Lt. Colonel Jerry B “Killer” Killian. Photo probably dates to the late 1960’s early 1970’s. Leslie Nielsen served in the Royal Canadian Air Force at the end of WWII.

Found this interesting photograph today from the 111th FS, Texas Air National Guard - Yes, that is Leslie Nielsen of “Airplane” fame. The officer in the center in the flight suit with the 1000 hours patch is Lt. Colonel Jerry B “Killer” Killian. Photo probably dates to the late 1960’s early 1970’s. Leslie Nielsen served in the Royal Canadian Air Force at the end of WWII.

T-PATCH- THE SYMBOL OF THE 36TH INFANTRY DIVISION- EARLY VERSIONS

The distinctive insignia which represents the 36th Infantry Division is called the “T-Patch”. It was first approved  by the military on November 12, 1918 but not adopted by the 36th until January 16, 1919.

Here is a scan of the  original drawing submitted to the National Archives

The original T-Patch was very irregular as noted above in the original submission, there was not a standard design. The museum has many original WWI era T-Patches in the collection and they show the variety of designs being used by the 36th Infantry Division during 1919 and the early 1920′s  The design began to be standardized between WWI and WWII in the 1920′s and 1930′s.  As can be seen in the  picture at the top of this post. The T-Patch on the right of the top  picture is the one which would be used from 1940 through 1968 when the 36th Infantry Division was replaced with the 49th Armored Division. When the 36th Infantry Division was reflagged in 2004, the T-Patch was brought back and is worn by our soldiers today.

Corporal Charles E “Commando” Kelly interview from the National Archives recording of the 5th Mobile Army Expeditionary Station broadcast from March 21, 1944. The slideshow was put together by the museum and features our images as well as one from Kelly’s book “One Man Army”