General Question

ETpro's avatar

What became of the other 100 Army Airborne Divisions?

Asked by ETpro (34605points) February 21st, 2010

You hear all the time about the Army 101st Airborne Division. Hats off to them for the dangerous, demanding work they do. But how did the number 101 come about. What’s up with the first 100?

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kevbo's avatar

A shot in the dark, but I would guess either that the 101 number is arbitrary or that the preceding divisions are of other varieties with “Airborne” merely being a descriptor—99th Cavalry, 100th Infantry, 101st Airborne, etc.

ETpro's avatar

@kevbo Thanks. That second guess sounds likely to me. Hopefully one of our Army Flutherites will chime in with an informed answer.

CaptainHarley's avatar

From a civilian standpoint, the numbering of military units appears fairly arbitrary. There were a multitude of unit designations during WWII, and some of those were retained for historical and esprit de corps reasons. The 101st Airborne is one of those. Units are being deactivated and reactivated all the time, depending upon the needs of the military. The unit with which I was a company commander in Vietnam, the 173rd Airborne Brigage ( Separate ), was deactivated sometime in the 70s, and then reactivated prior to Gulf War II. They made the only combat jump during the war, into Northern Iraq. I would have killed to have been with them.

ETpro's avatar

@CaptainHarley Thanks. That makes perfect sense.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Welcome. Uh… would that be “civilian sense” or “military sense? ” : D

ETpro's avatar

@CaptainHarley Military sense being an oxymoron akin to military intelligence? While waiting for an answer, I found this.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Good explanation!

“Military sense” is no more an oxymoron than “civilian sense,” just different. : )

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