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|Hays, J.J. United States Army Ground Forces TOE, World War II, vol 3: The Airborne Division 1942-1945, part one. Milton Keynes, UK: Military Press, 2003
ix + 135 pages
Prefix [sic]; Author's Biography; Introduction; Symbols; Silhouettes Key; Abbreviations; tables; organigrams; TOEs
|Hays, J.J. United States Army Ground Forces TOE, World War II, vol 3: The Airborne Division 1942-1945, part two. Milton Keynes, UK: Military Press, 2003
ix + 132 pages
Introduction; Symbols; Silhouettes Key; Abbreviations; tables; organigrams; TOEs
When we say "More of the same," in this case that's a good sign.
We've already reviewed volume one, The Infantry Division (in three parts), and volume two The Armored Division (in two parts) from J.J. Hays and Military Press, and so far it's been all thumbs up. The same holds true for volume three, The Airborne Division, also published in two separate parts.
The style and format remain unchanged from the Infantry and Armor volumes. Hays looks at all the components of American airborne divisions, for each component he examines the TOE for multiple dates during the war, and for each incarnation he provides detailed information as text, in charts, and in handsome organigrams.
Volume one covers these airborne formations:
Division headquarters company
Airborne antiaircraft battalion
Airborne engineer battalion
Airborne division artillery
Parachute field artillery battalion
Glider field artillery battalion
And volume two covers the following airborne formations:
Parachute infantry regiment
Glider infantry regiment
Airborne medical company
Airborne ordnance company
Airborne quartermaster company
Airborne signal company
Airborne military police platoon
Parachute maintenance company
Airborne division special troops
Airborne reconnaissance platoon
At the top level, Hays lists the five American airborne divisions formed during World War II (11th, 13th, 17th, 82nd, and 101st) with brief notes for each. He then provides overall TOE data at the divisional level according to the official documents for 15 October 1942, 24 February 1944, 1 August 1944, and 16 December 1944. For each of these dates, data includes an organigram, a list of all relevant T/O and T/E documents, tables of manpower, weapons, and equipment, and supporting notes. This section supplements the TOE material with detailed tables titled "Summary of Air Transportation Required" showing exactly what air assets (planes and gliders) were necessary to move ground assets into battle. All told, this division-level data amounts to about eighteen pages.
Hays deals with divisional components in similar fashion. For example, parachute infantry formations take up about fifty pages. This section begins with text, tables, and organigrams for the "infantry parachute regiment" (later redesignated "infantry regiment, parachute") as a whole for several different dates. Hays then covers the regimental headquarters and headquarters company, service company, parachute infantry battalion, battalion HQ and HQ company, and parachute infantry company, all for varying dates during the war as their organizational structures evolved. The same approach applies to glider infantry regiments.
Here's an example of one page of information for the "infantry rifle company, parachute" as of 1 August 1944.
As with the previous volumes, Hays provides attractive, clean, easy-to-decipher pages containing enormous amounts of detail. The pages not only transmit information effortlessly, they're also visually pleasing.
All the books in this series are packed full of information, we enjoy them immensely, we recommend them to anyone interested in wartime American TOEs, and we continue to believe that Military Press is exactly the kind of small, dedicated, "mom-and-pop" publisher WWII readers should try to support.
Available from online booksellers, local bookshops, or directly from Military Press.
Thanks to Military Press for providing these review copies.
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Reviewed 7 March 2004
Copyright © 2004 by Bill Stone
May not be reproduced in any form without written permission of Stone & Stone