Douglas MacArthur Fact File: Lifespan:1880 - 1964 *** Full Name: Douglas MacArthur *** Nickname: Gaijin Shogun, Dugout Doug and Big Chief *** Occupation: American 5-star General and Field Marshal of the Philippine Army *** Date of Birth: Douglas MacArthur was born on January 26th 1880 *** Place of Birth: Douglas MacArthur was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA *** Family background: His father was Arthur MacArthur Jr a United States Army Captain and his mother was Mary Pinkney Hardy. Both of his parents were from upstanding distinguished families. Arthur also had two older brothers, Arthur III and Malcolm. Malcolm died in 1883 of measles *** Early life and childhood: He grew up in a steady stream of Army posts largely in the American Old West *** Education: Douglas MacArthur was formally educated in the Force Public School followed by West Texas Military Academy as his father had been posted to Texas and he graduated with 97.33 out of 100 ***
Douglas MacArthur Fact 1: Douglas MacArthur was born on January 26th 1880 and during the 19th century period in history when there was much change across Europe and the world, the first and second French, Spanish, Chinese and Holy Roman Empires all collapsed and Europe would see two World Wars.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 2: Although both his grandfather and father attempted to secure him a presidential appointment into the United States Military Academy at West Point, neither were successful. Instead he took and passed an examination for an appointment from Congressman Theobald Otjen and scored an impressive 93.3. Reflecting he later said “It was a lesson I never forgot. Preparedness is the key to success and victory.”
Douglas MacArthur Fact 3: On June 13th 1899 Douglas MacArthur entered West Point. He graduated from a class of ninety three, first in June 1903. Out of a potential to earn 2470.00 merits he earned 2424.12, it was the third highest ever score and as was customary, top ranking cadets were commissioned straight into the United States Army Corps of Engineers.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 4: His first posting was to the Philippines in October of 1903. By the following year his tour would be cut short due to ill health, he had contracted dhobi itch and malaria and was sent stateside to recover.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 5: Having recovered he next posting was to Tokyo as his father’s aide-de-camp. Their job was to inspect military installations and they continued to do this across Japan and then to head to India arriving at Calcutta in January of 1906.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 6: He was recalled to Washington D.C. when their duties were completed in India and he was ordered to enroll at the Engineer School at Washington Barracks under instructions from President Theodore Roosevelt.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 7: By 1908 he would be given his first command of Company K, 3rd Engineer Battalion and the following year he would become battalion adjutant. In 1910 he was promoted to engineer officer at Fort Leavenworth.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 8: By April of 1914 the occupation of Veracruz was ordered by President Wilson and MacArthur was to join the staff headquarters being sent to the area.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 9: In December of 1915 MacArthur was promoted to the rank of major and posted to the War Department.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 10: After the American’s declared war on Germany in 1917 and the decision made to use the National Guard on the Western Front that MacArthur suggested deploying a first division of men picked from different states in order to avoid any favoritism. The unit would also be trained for open field combat as opposed to trench warfare. The united would become the 42nd (“Rainbow”) Division with Major General William A Man as its commander and MacArthur as chief of staff, at that time he held the rank of colonel.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 11: By February of 1918 the 42nd Division were in France. The unit proved a success as on March 9th the 42nd began three raids on German trenches that proved successful. By the end of the conflict MacArthur would be appointed as commander of the 42nd Division although it was short lived.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 12: Post war he became Superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1919 and his job was to bring the academy up to date.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 13: In his own view this meant not only in terms of the military but also in the fields of politics, economics and social welfare, the current students had no knowledge of anything except military sciences. He also strove to update the grading system by incorporating not only on military character but also on leadership, bearing athletic performance and efficiency and put together the unwritten Cadet Honor Code by 1922.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 14: In February of 1922 Douglas MacArthur and Louise Cromwell Brooks were married and in October of that year they left the U.S. and set sail for the Philippines accompanied by Louise’s two daughters.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 15: MacArthur and his family returned to the U.S in 1925 and was posted to Fort McPherson in Atlanta, Georgia where he encountered some cultural discrimination because he was the son of a Union Army Officer. He requested a transfer, which was granted, and several months later he took command of Fort McHenry in Baltimore.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 16: Posted back to the Philippines during World War II he would receive a citation which read “For conspicuous leadership in preparing the Philippine Islands to resist conquest, for gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action against invading Japanese forces, and for the heroic conduct of defensive and offensive operations on the Bataan Peninsula. He mobilized, trained, and led an army which has received world acclaim for its gallant defense against a tremendous superiority of enemy forces in men and arms. His utter disregard of personal danger under heavy fire and aerial bombardment, his calm judgment in each crisis, inspired his troops, galvanized the spirit of resistance of the Filipino people, and confirmed the faith of the American people in their Armed Forces.”.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 17: MacArthur would be appointed as Supreme Commander of Allied Forces for the Southwest Pacific Area in April 1942.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 18: With Operation Downfall in preparation Japan surrendered in August of 1945, the surrender was accepted. Japan would remain occupied by Allied forces until The San Francisco Peace Treaty was signed and went into effect on April 28th 1952.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 19: By June of 1950 the U.S. would become involved in the conflict between North Korea and South Korea and MacArthur would become Commander-in-Chief of the United Nations Command as well as taking command of all South Korean forces.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 20: With the Chinese having joined the North Korean's and pushing the South Korean's together with the allied forces back, it was to be decided whether South Korea was to be abandoned.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 21: Truman and MacArthur never saw eye to eye and so when the Korean conflict was not going as well as expected Truman succeeded in having MacArthur relieved of duty. As a result he became the only American President with the lowest ever approval rating after recalling MacArthur, so serious did matters become for Truman, leading to a constitutional crisis, he decided not to run for a second term.
Douglas MacArthur Fact 22: Upon returning to Washington D.C. with his family, MacArthur addressed the U.S. Congress – “I am closing my 52 years of military service. When I joined the Army, even before the turn of the century, it was the fulfillment of all of my boyish hopes and dreams. The world has turned over many times since I took the oath on the plain at West Point, and the hopes and dreams have long since vanished, but I still remember the refrain of one of the most popular barrack ballads of that day which proclaimed most proudly that "old soldiers never die; they just fade away." And like the old soldier of that ballad, I now close my military career and just fade away, an old soldier who tried to do his duty as God gave him the light to see that duty. Good Bye.”
Douglas MacArthur Fact 23: At West Point in 1962 his acceptance speech for received the Sylvanus Thayer Award was - "The shadows are lengthening for me. The twilight is here. My days of old have vanished, tone and tint. They have gone glimmering through the dreams of things that were. Their memory is one of wondrous beauty, watered by tears, and coaxed and caressed by the smiles of yesterday. I listen vainly, but with thirsty ears, for the witching melody of faint bugles blowing reveille, of far drums beating the long roll. In my dreams I hear again the crash of guns, the rattle of musketry, the strange, mournful mutter of the battlefield. But in the evening of my memory, always I come back to West Point. Always there echoes and re-echoes: Duty, Honor, Country. Today marks my final roll call with you, but I want you to know that when I cross the river my last conscious thoughts will be of The Corps, and The Corps, and The Corps. I bid you farewell."
Douglas MacArthur Fact 24: On the April 5th 1964 Douglas MacArthur died at the Walter Reed Army Medical Centre of Biliary Cirrhosis. He was honored with a state funeral, authorized by John F Kennedy before he died and Lyndon B Johnson honored the promise. His body was laid to rest at the rotunda of the Douglas MacArthur Memorial in Norfolk, Virginia.
List of Medals Awarded to Douglas MacArthur: Medal of Honor *** Distinguished Service Cross (3) *** Army Distinguished Service Medal (5) *** Navy Distinguished Service Medal *** Silver Star (7) *** Distinguished Flying Cross *** Bronze Star *** Air Medal *** Purple Heart (2) ***
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