Officials from Ohio lobbied for a National Guard Division drawn entirely from Ohio. They achieved a partial victory with the organization of the 37thDivision, nicknamed the “Buckeye” Division, on July 18, 1917 from the former 16thOhio National Guard Division reinforced by West Virginia troops. Many of the Ohio troops had recently served on the Mexican border against the bandit Pancho Villa.
After training at Camp Lee, Va. the division departed for Europe in June 1918. Once in France it traveled to the Bourmont Area for further training. The “Buckeyes” entered the front lines for the first time on August 4, 1918, when they took over the Baccarat Sector of the Western front in Lorraine.
On September 22, 1918 just before the start of the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, the division moved to the Avocourt Sector north of La Cour to relieve the 79th Division. They moved into the front line on September 25, 1918 in preparation for the main offensive on September 26, 1918.
Attacking in the center of U.S. V Corps, the 37th advanced five kilometers on the first day. They pressed on, passing the Montfaucon Woods and contested the village of Ivoiry, although stiff enemy resistance prevented it from being captured and held that day. They pressed on and reached the Bois de Cierges before being relieved by the 32nd Division on October 1, 1918. They redeployed to secure the St. Mihiel sector, and redeployed again to participate in the Ypres-Lys Offensive. Here they forced the Scheldt River twice and broke through determined enemy resistance.
Constituent Units of the 37th Division
62ndField Artillery Brigade