The history of the 224th Field Artillery is a direct mirror of the history of the 110th Field Artillery. The 224th became a separate unit at Fort Meade, MD on March 12th, 1942 after being the 2nd Battalion of the 110th Field Artillery.
A group of Marylanders who had recently returned home from voluntary military training camp for civilians in Plattsburg, New York, founded Battery A, Maryland National Guard, on 28 December 1915. Upon American’s entry into World War One in April 1917, two additional Maryland National Guard batteries were organized, and all three batteries combined to form the 1st Maryland Field Artillery Battalion. The unit was federalized in August 1917 and attached to the newly established 29th Division. In November 1917 the 1st Maryland Artillery consolidated with several District of Columbia National Guard units and was redesignated the 110th Field Artillery Regiment. Colonel Washington Bowie, the former commander of the 5th Maryland Infantry, became the 110’s first commanding officer. As a unit of the 29th Division, the 110th Field Artillery earned a campaign streamer in France in World War I. After overseas service in France during World War One, the 110th was reformed in 1925 as a two-battalion artillery unit in the Maryland National Guard, with headquarters in Pikesville.
The 110th was inducted into federal service on 3 February 1941 along with the rest of the 29th Infantry Division. When the 29th converted from a “square” to a “triangular” division structure in March 1942, the 110th was broken up into two independent artillery battalions, the 110th (formerly 1-110) and 224th (formerly 2-110). The 224th Field Artillery Battalion provided direct support for the 175th Infantry Regiment.
On April 16th, 1942, Battery A (formerly Battery D of the 110th Regiment) was transferred as a unit to help garrison Bermuda. Battery C (formerly Battery F of the 110th) was transferred away to accompany the Army War Show. New Batteries A and C were formed from other parts of the 29th Division Artillery.
Clinton Thurston, Jr. took commander of the 224th Field Artillery took over the battalion while training in England and served as its commander during the duration of the World War II combat period.
The 224th landed on June 7th, 1944 on D+1. Coupled with the 175th Infantry, it was scheduled to land on D-Day but was held back a day because of the chaos on the beach. The 110th Field Artillery and 224th Field Artillery earned streamers for the Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, and Central Europe campaigns.
After World War Two, the 110th and 224th were consolidated in the U.S. Army’s 1959 Pentomic reorganization, forming the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Howitzer Battalions, 110th Field Artillery Regiment. In 1963, the Pentomic structure was terminated, and the 110th was reconfigured into two battalions, the 1st and 2nd of the 110th Field Artillery.
The regiment was reduced to only a single battalion (the 2nd) when the 29th Infantry Division was deactivated in 1968. When the 29th Infantry Division (Light) was reactivated in 1985, the 110th FA Battalion served as the direct support 105mm artillery battalion for the 3rd Brigade.
The 2-110th FA was mobilized for homeland security in 2002 and in 2006 was mobilized for service at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Large numbers of the unit served in Afghanistan and Iraq.
On August 8, 2009, the 2-110 FA was inactivated.
1. Balkoski, Joseph. The Maryland National Guard: A History of Maryland’s Military Forces, 1634-1991. Baltimore, MD: Guard, 1991. Print.
2. “Maryland Regimental Artillery Association, Inc. — Home.” Maryland Regimental Artillery Association, Inc. — Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Feb. 2014.
3. Cooper, John P. The History of the 110th Field Artillery, with Sketches of Related Units. Baltimore: War Records Division, Maryland Historical Society, 1953. Print.
4. Ewing, Joseph H. 29 Let’s Go!: A History of the 29th Infantry Division in World War II. Nashville, Tn.: Battery, 1979. Print.