Smith, Albert Cowper, born 06-06-1894 in Virginia, the son of Eugene Albert and Blanch, born Baker, Smith. Following the graduation from the Gordon Military Institute in Barnesville, Georgia, he sought for an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, but it was hard to come by, so he entered the Virginia Polytechnic Institute in Blacksburg, Virginia instead.
Smith completed almost three years there and finally received an appointment to West Point in June 1913. He was a member of the class which produced more than 55 future General officers, including two Army Chiefs of Staff – Joseph Lawton Collins, “Lightning Joe” and Matthew Bunker Ridgway . Other classmates include: Clare H. Armstrong, Aaron Bradshaw Jr., Mark W. Clark, John T. Cole, Norman D. Cota, John M. Devine, William W. Eagles, Theodore L. Futch, Charles H. Gerhardt, Augustus M. Gurney, Ernest N. Harmon, William Kelly Harrison Jr., Robert W. Hasbrouck, Frederick A. Irving, Laurence B. Keiser, Charles S. Kilburn, Bryant E. Moore, Daniel Noce, Onslow S. Rolfe, Herbert N. Schwarzkopf, George D. Wahl, Raymond E. S. Williamson, and George H. Weems.
He graduated with Bachelor of Science degree on 20-04-1917 shortly following the American entry into World War I and was commissioned second lieutenant in the Cavalry Branch. Smith completed his basic training at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, while attached to 3rd Cavalry Regiment and was promoted to the permanent rank of first lieutenant on 15-03-1917 and to the temporary rank of captain on August 5 that year. He embarked for France in October 1917 and his regiment was tasked with the operation of three major horse remount depots. The three squadrons were charged with the purchase of horses, mules and forage, the care, conditioning, and training of remounts before issue, and the distribution and issue of remounts to the American Expeditionary Force.
Smith was later transferred to the headquarters, U.S. First Army under General John J. Pershing
and became Secretary of the General Staff, VII Corps under Major Generals Omar Bundy and William George Haan . While in this capacity, he took part in the Meuse-Argonne offensive and following the Armistice, Smith participated in the occupation of the Rhineland, while stationed at the corps headquarters in the town of Wittlich.
He was later ordered to Montabaur and assumed duty as Aide-de-Camp to the commanding General, 1st Infantry Division, Edward F. McGlachlin. Smith remained in this capacity until September 1919, when he was ordered back to the United States.
Albert became the Commanding Officer of the 37th Armoured Division in 1942. and following in 1942 until 1944 the Commanding Officer of Combat Command A of the 14th Armoured Division in North Europe. Assigned as Commanding General of the 14th Armoured Division, nickname “Liberators” from July 1944, where he succeeded . Vernon Edwin `Prich` Prichard . Smith succeeded Leland Stanford Hobbs as Commanding General of the 30th Infantry Division, nickname “Old Hickory” in September 1945 until 1946. The 30th Infantry Division was involved in the Battle of Normandy, the Mortain Counter-offensive, the Battle of the Bulge, the Battle of Aachen and for the rest of the war. The Division took 3.848 prisoners and suffered 8.954 casualties in 282 days of combat. Smith was the Chief of Military History from 1953 until 1955 and retired.
Death and burial ground of Smith, Albert Cowper.
Albert Smith died age 79 on 24-01-1974 of kidney failure at Walter Reed Army Medical Cente and is buried with his wife Mary, born Gorman, who died old age 90 on 02-02-1987 on the Arlington National Cemetery, Section 4.
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