"VISIT THE JOHN "BLACK JACK" PERSHING MEMORIAL" Pennsylvania Avenue Tip by DennyP
Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington D.C.: 4 reviews and 10 photos
As you walk down Pennsylvania Ave it surely is a kaleidascope of buildings and memorials everywhere in this amazing city. This particular memorial that I was looking for was an easy one to find, and that was the Memorial To General John J ("black jack") Pershing. 1860 -1948.This really famous General of all Generals lead the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) in World War 1 in Europe.. His vintage went back to his many campaigns in the Indian wars where he was making a name for himself.
Pershing was the only soldier in the US army in his own lifetime to ever reach the highest command of General of all the Armies of the United States A rank that was higher even than George Washington.
Pershing holds the United States Officers number of 0-1. He was regarded as a mentor by a generation of US Army generals from the second World War ie:General Dwight D Eisenhower, General Omaha Bradley , General George C Patton,General george C Marshall. (some who incidentally had served as his aides)
Pershing decided that he would enrol in West point not so much for the Army, but for the education that he could aquire there and far better than he could receive in his rural Missouri.
Pershing was sworn in as a West point cadet in 1882 and early in his cadetship was selected on his high leadership abilities reaching the highest possible cadet rank. Pershing graduated from West Point in 1886 and was commisioned as a second lieutenant. His leadership skills were noticed by all his superiors . Pershings career was a very colourful one quickly rising through the ranks after his many campaigns.
After departing New York in May of 1917 under top secrecy Pershing arrived in France in June of 1917 and in a show of presence he marched some of the 16th Infantry Regiment through Paris just after his arrival. For the first time in American history General Pershing allowed American troops to be under command of a foreign power. The suggestion was made that the American soldiers would join with the battle experienced Australians in a set piece attack in the upcoming "Battle of Hamel.".This would also give the newly arrived American soldiers good battle experience and at the same time bolster the numbers of the depleted Australian division that had been fighting for some time and had suffered heavy losses.
In early 1918 entire American divisions were beginning to fight in the front lines. American Forces were beginning to see real action in the summer of 1918 contributing eight large divisions into the battle.
Much can be said of Pershing , and he was widely criticised for being an arm chair General who was often blamed for unneccesarily losing a lot of American soldiers lives.
In 1919 in recognition of his distinguished career in World War 1, the US Congress authorised the President to promote Pershing to General of the Armies of the United States. The highest rank that any American General had ever attained. Pershing was then permitted to wear four gold stars for the rest of his career unlike other famous Generals that could only wear silver stars. The year 1924 saw Pershing retire from military active service, he was 64 years old. John J Pershing died on July 15th 1948 and is buried in Arlington Cemetary Virginia
Address: Pennsylvania Ave Washington DC
Directions: PERSHING PARK OFF PENNSYLVANIA AVENUE WASHINGTON DC.
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