Heading Home

Between April and June 1945, the 40th was assigned to various duties cleaning up and supporting the US Forces in Germany until they were relocated to Marseilles, France.


At the end of World War Two, the armed forces of the European Theater of Operations thought that they would be heading out to the Pacific. The build up in forces was immense, creating bivouacs the size of cities. A description of this can be found in an article entitled “Sweating it Out” in the Stars and Stripes August 5th 1945. (The day before American forces dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima):

” Here is the place where the cream of America’s military might in the ETO is being collected, shaped up and readied for the final crushing blows against the remaining enemy- Japan.

In less than two months the giant Assembly Area Command has taken more than 170,000 troops, whisked them through its network of redeployment camps, and sped them on their way to the United States and the Pacific.

The sprawling redeployment tent cities of the Assembly Area sometimes seem like rip-roaring boom towns, with battle-hardened soldiers in combat boots crowding PXs and drinking beer, while off in a corner somebody tinkles out hillbilly music on a banjo.

Other times the camps seem like small-time college campuses, some men playing baseball, others loafing in the sun. all waiting to be processed.
Basically, there are only two things common to all the redeployment camps the routine processing of all the troops passing through, and the dust that rises from the roads as trucks roll along in almost endless convoy.”

The wait was long, and troops were allowed to travel along the coast of the French Rivera. This was a fortunate chance for the men of the 40th to receive a well-deserved break in the sun on the French coast.

Sea Robin

The Sea Robin in 1947 – a Type C3-class ship Troop Transport Ship that was sold and renamed as the JACOB LUCKENBACH. Courtesy of
ShipSpotting.com© Frank A.Gerhardt


Fortunately,Japan surrendered on August 15th 1945. With the war finally over, the 40th battalion stepped aboard the Troopship SS Sea Robin, a C-3 class troopship to prepare for the journey home on the 30th of August 1944.


The Robin Egg - an on-board newsletter for the troops - this one dates from 9 Sept 1945. Download this issue of the Robin Egg!

The Robin Egg – an on-board newsletter for the troops – this one dates from 9 Sept 1945.

Download this issue of the Robin Egg!


There was a newsletter published on-board the Sea Robin called the “Robin Egg“, written by men aboard the ship as they headed home towards Boston. It  acknowledged  men who had contributed and worked on the paper on this last leg of their journey home to their loved ones.

They were the first unit to pull Kitchen duty and guard duty as the the other troops were assigned to the ship. Once again the 40th had been first!

The men even engaged in football games on board the ship, where unfortunately they didn’t come first, but second. The 40th Signal Battalion were whipped by the 394th Fighter Squadron in a score of 18-11.

The 40th arrived in Boston on September the 9th 1945, and departed by rail for Camp Myles Standish in Massachusetts and then Fort Dix in New Jersey.

At this point, enlisted men returned home, and the officers reported to Camp Gruber, Oklahoma,where it was inactivated on 25 January 1946.

The Battalion has since participated in several other military campaigns, and is active to this day.


<< Germany