Gen. Patton's "Hell on Wheels" the 2D Armored Division, United States Army
Marker No: 37
Aluminum 27 x 42 Subject Marker
Geographic: 31.137630, -97.750381
Location: At 27th and Battalion Streets in front of 4th Infantry Division Museum, Fort Hood, Killeen
Marker Text: Formed to meet 20th century challenges, this force includes Battery A, 1st Battalion, 3rd Field Artillery, which has been in service since 1778. That battery and other veteran units have found new capabilities in this age of mechanized combat involving lightning mobility and massive firepower. In 1940, as German panzers overran France, the United States Congress created the 1st and 2nd American Armored Divisions. The 2nd was organized July 15, 1940, at Fort Benning, Ga., by Gen. Charles L. Scott, and received its "Hell on Wheels" name in 1941 from Gen. George S. Patton, Jr.
First U.S. armored force in combat in World War II, "Hell on Wheels" landed in North Africa on Nov. 8, 1942. It won great victories at Safi and Casablanca, in the assault on Sicily, the 1944 Normandy invasion, the Battle of the Bulge, and other campaigns. Along 11,702 miles of combat advance, the 2nd won 7 French Croix de Guerres, 19 Distinguished Unit citations, and was first foreign division ever given the Fourragere of Belgium. The 2nd provided Honor Guard for President Harry S. Truman at the Potsdam peace conference.
Since 1945 Fort Hood has been 2nd's permanent base. (1975)