SERVICE UNIFORM JACKET – PRIVATE – 88TH INFANTRY DIVISION BLUE DEVILS – 5TH ARMY
The 88th Infantry Division was an infantry division of the United States Army that saw service in both World War I and World War II. It was one of the first of the Organized Reserve divisions to be called into federal service, created nearly “from scratch” after the implementation of the draft in 1940. Previous divisions were composed of either Regular Army or National Guard personnel. Much of the experience in reactivating it was used in the subsequent expansion of the U.S. Army.
By the end of World War II the 88th Infantry fought its way to the northernmost extreme of Italy. In early May 1945 troops of its 349th Infantry Regiment joined the 103d Infantry Division of the VI Corps of the U.S. Seventh Army, part of the 6th Army Group, which had raced south through Bavaria into Innsbruck, Austria, in Vipiteno in the Italian Alps.
U.S. Army basic service uniforms consisted of a winter service uniform of olive drab wool worn in temperate weather, and a summer service uniform of khaki cotton fabric worn in tropical weather. In addition to the service uniforms worn for ordinary duty and dress purposes there were a variety of fatigue and combat uniforms. Summer and winter service uniforms were worn during their respective seasons in the continental United States. During the war, the European Theater of Operations (Northwestern Europe) was considered a year-round temperate zone and the Pacific Theater of Operations a year-round tropical uniform zone. In the Mediterranean Theater of Operations, U.S. soldiers wore both seasonal uniforms.