First Marine Division Shoulder Patch

1st div.jpg

Dublin Core


First Marine Division Shoulder Patch

Alternative Title



World War, 1939-1945


The First Marine Division shoulder patch, originally authorized to be worn by members of units who served with or were attached to the Division in the Pacific during World War II. The patch was the first to be approved in that war and specifically commemorated the division's victory in the Battle for Guadalcanal. The white stars featured on the night-sky blue background are in the arrangement of the Southern Cross constellation, under which the Guadalcanal fighting took place.

A notable soldier who wore the patch was Arthur Joseph Holmes (1923-1942). Born in New York on December 11, 1923, Holmes enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on January 26, 1942, not two months after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. By April of 1942, Holmes joined Company C, First Battalion, First Marines, First Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force, which was an infantry division stationed in New River, North Carolina. In October of 1942, the company performed duties in the Guadalcanal war zone and engaged in the Battle of Tenaru. Holmes transferred to Company E, Second Battalion, First Marines, First Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force, in July of 1943. He was stationed at Camp Rowville in Dandenong, Victoria, Australia. His unit participated in the push for Huon Peninsula, Operation Cartwheel at Rabaul, the Battle of Cape Gloucester, as well as the battles for the Solomon and Palau Islands. Private First Class Holmes lost his life while participating in the Battle of Peleliu on September 14, 1944. He was buried at sea and is memorialized in the Manila American Cemetery in Taguig, Philippines. Holmes is also memorialized at the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Florida.

In 2017, the University of Central Florida was one of three universities selected to launch the National Cemetery Administration’s Veterans Legacy Program Project. The program engaged a team of scholars to make the life stories of veterans buried in the Florida National Cemetery available to the public. The project engages UCF students in research and writing and fosters collaboration between students, faculty and local Central Florida schools to produce interactive curriculum for k-12 students. The corresponding website exhibit uses RICHES Mosaic Interface to create a digital archive of related data. The public can use the project-developed augmented-reality app at more than 100 gravesites at the Florida National Cemetery, where they can access the UCF student-authored biographies of veterans.


United States Marine Corps


Digital reproduction of original regimental patch.


United States Marine Corps

Date Created

ca. 1943-02




57.5 KB


1 regimental patch




Still Image


Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands

Accrual Method



History Teacher


Originally created and published by the United States Marine Corps.

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Connolly, Lehman
Cravero, Geoffrey

External Reference

Abney, Barb. "VA Selects UCF Historians to Archive Stories of Deceased Veterans Veterans." UCF Today, March 13, 2017. Accessed August 9, 2017.
Black, Jeremy. World War Two: A Military History. London [u.a]: Routledge, 2003.


United States Marine Corps, “First Marine Division Shoulder Patch,” RICHES, accessed May 21, 2024,