© 2019 by CNY Militaria

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WWII produced and 1950's worn Uniform of Major General Frank Bowman. Dress jacket and pants. Jacket has bullion shoulder boards, sewn on ribbon bars (CdG missing part of ribbon). Bullion cuff braids, bullion striped pants, dress shoes. Also his dress blue cap with replaced pinned on bullion band I fixed (needs resewing). 


Frank was born on 27 July 1896 in Mesilla Park in the then Territory of New Mexico where his family had moved in 1877. This small community he grew up and described his elementary education as "spotty"—but it must have been thorough as attested by his later accomplishments. Also he learned to ride and shoot as amply proven by his polo playing and his Distinguished Rifle and Pistol Awards from the National Matches. He attended the Hill School in Pottstown, Pennsylvania, and one term at what is now New Mexico State University, then took a prep course at Doud's in Washington, DC, prior to entering the Academy.


As might be expected Frank did extremely well at the Academy holding cadet ranks of corporal, sergeant and lieutenant. He graduated Number 55 in his class which numbered 227. Upon graduation he was commissioned in the Corps of Engineers in which branch he served throughout his career in grades from second lieutenant to major general.

Frank's class and the class that followed were graduated early—on 1 November 1918—to help meet the World War I need for junior officers. Ten days later, however, the Armistice was signed. Frank, along with the other 61 members of his Class assigned to the Corps of Engineers, was detailed as a student officer to The Engineer School at Camp A.A. Humphreys, Virginia (now Fort Belvoir), for a course in Civil Engineering. In June 1919 the students and faculty at the School were sent to Europe for a tour of the battlefields and the Service of Supply installations, returning to Camp Humphreys in September to continue their engineering studies. Having completed the Engineering course in June 1920, Frank was assigned to the 2d Engineers at Camp Travis, Texas, where he commanded the Map Reproduction Train and Company ‘‘A’’ until February 1921, when he returned to Camp Humphreys for a four-month Military Engineering course. In June 1921 he was ordered to the 3d Engineers in Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, where he served as a company commander and other miscellaneous regimental duties.


Frank’s other assignments prior to World War II were with the 29th Engineer Topographs' Battalion at Camp Humphreys from 1924 to 1929; on ROTC duty at Alabama Polytechnic Institute at Auhum from 1929 to 1934, and with the Fourth Engineers at Fort Benning, Georgia, from 1938 to 1941. An interesting note is that on three separate occasions with the 3d, 4th and 2d Engineers, Frank commanded Company “A."

Just prior to World War II Frank organized and commanded the 4th Engineer Battalion at Fort Benning. This was the Engineer unit of the 4th Division which participated in maneuvers and demonstrations in 1941. In early 1942 the Division moved to Camp Gordon, Georgia, but shortly thereafter, Frank was assigned as Corps Engineer of II Corps at Jacksonville, Florida. The Corps Headquarters went to England in July 1942 but in a few months Frank was ordered to London to become Engineer, American Forces Headquarters. In November 1942 the Headquarters sailed to North Africa and in January 1943 Frank was assigned as the Engineer of the Fifth United States Army. The mission of Fifth Army Headquarters was to prepare for and execute the invasion of Italy. After a short tour as Engineer of Service of Supply in Oran, Frank returned as Engineer of the Fifth Army and served in this capacity throughout the campaign in Italy until the Germans surrendered in 1945. The war in Europe having ended, Frank was ordered to the Pacific Theater and arrived in the Philippines in September 1945. From there he went on to Japan and became the Engineer of the Base Section for all Japan. He held this position until March 1946 when he was transferred to Okinawa as commander of the Ground Forces in the Ryukyus.

In June 1946 he returned to the United States. Following a brief assignment as G4 of the Army Ground Forces in Fort Monroe, Virginia, he was placed in command of the Columbus General Depot at Columbus, Ohio, where he served from September 1946 until October 1949. From that date until January 1953 he was stationed at Fort Belvoir where he was Deputy Commander and Chief of Staff.

Because of his highly successful World War II military engineering experience, Frank was then selected to become the Engineer, Headquarters Army Forces Far East with station at Zama, Japan. This tour required extensive travel, particularly to Korea. Frank’s last assignment was Commanding General, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, from April 1955 until his retirement in June 1956.


For his outstanding services in his many varied assignments Frank was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal and the Legion of Merit with two Oak Leaf Clusters. Also he received the Purple Heart and five battle stars on his European Theater Ribbon.

His foreign decorations were: Honorable Commander, Order of the British Empire; Croix de Guerre avee Etoile de Vermeil (France); Silver Medal for Valor (Italy); Commander of the Order of the Crown of Italy; Medalha de Guerra (Brazil); Order of the Military Ulchi with Gold Star (Korea).

Uniform Group of Major General Frank Bowman