United States Army Central
|Third United States Army|
Shoulder sleeve insignia of Third Army
|Type||Army service component command (formerly
|Motto(s)||"Tertia Semper Prima"
(Latin for "Third Always First")
Occupation of Germany (1919)
Occupation of Germany (1945)
|LTG Michael X. Garrett |
|Distinctive unit insignia|
The United States Army Central, formerly the Third United States Army, commonly referred to as the Third Army and as ARCENT is a military formation of the
Third Army is headquartered at
The Third United States Army was first activated as a formation during the First World War on 7 November 1918, at
On 15 November 1918, Major General Dickman was given the mission to move quickly and by any means into Central Germany on occupation duties. He was to disarm and disband German forces as ordered by General
The march into Germany for occupation duty was begun on 17 November 1918. By 15 December the Third Army Headquarters at
Third Army troops had encountered no hostile act of any sort. In the occupied area, both food and coal supplies were sufficient. The crossing of the Rhine by the front line divisions was effected in good time and without confusion. Troops, upon crossing the Rhine and reaching their assigned areas, were billeted preparatory to occupying selected positions for defense. The strength of the Third Army as of 19 December, the date the bridgehead occupation was completed, was 9,638 officers and 221,070 enlisted men.
On 12 December, Field Order No. 11 issued, directed the Third Army to occupy the northern sector of the Coblenz bridgehead, with the advance elements to cross the
Before the advance, the 1st Division passed to the command of the III Corps. With three divisions, the 1st, 2d, and 32d, the III Corps occupied the American sector of the Coblenz bridgehead, the movement of the troops into position beginning at the scheduled hour, 13 December. The four bridges available for crossing the river within the Coblenz bridgehead were the pontoon bridge and railroad bridge at Coblenz, the railroad bridges at
On 15 December, Third Army Headquarters at
By the night of 14 December, Third Army troops had occupied their positions on the perimeter of the Coblenz bridgehead. 
During January 1919, the Third Army was engaged in training and preparing the troops under its command for any contingency. A letter of instruction was circulated to lower commanders prescribing a plan of action in case hostilities were resumed. Installations were set up throughout the Army area to facilitate command.
In February, military schools were opened through the Third Army area; a quartermaster depot was organized; 2,000 officers and enlisted men left to take courses in British and French universities; better leave facilities were created; and plans for sending American divisions to the United States were made. On 4 February, the military control of the Stadtkreis of Trier was transferred from GHQ to the Third Army.
In March, routine duties of occupation and training were carried on; an Army
In April, the exodus of American divisions from Third Army to the United States began. During the month, motor transport parks were established; an Army
On 14 May 1919, Marshal
On 1 June, the advance GHQ, AEF, at Trier was discontinued. On 16 June, Foch notified Pershing that allied armies must be ready after 20 June to resume offensive operations and that preliminary movements were to begin 17 June. On 19 June, Pershing notified Foch that beginning 23 June the Third Army would occupy the towns of Limburg, Westerburg, Hachenburg, and Altenkirchen, and that III Corps would seize the railroad connecting these towns. On 23 June, the Germans signified their intention to sign the peace treaty and contemplated operations were suspended. On 30 June, Foch and Pershing conferred about the American troops to be left on the Rhine.
On 1 July, General Pershing notified the War Department that upon Germany's compliance with military conditions imposed upon her (probably within three months after German ratification of the treaty), the American forces in Europe would be reduced to a single regiment of infantry supplemented by necessary auxiliaries. Accordingly, the Third Army was disbanded on 2 July 1919. Its headquarters and all personnel (numbering about 6,800 men) and units under it were thereafter designated American Forces in Germany. This force would remain in Germany for over three years. This was due, at least in part, to the fact that the United States, having rejected the Treaty of Versailles, was therefore still "