American Campaign/American Theater
Medal Display Recognition

Site Index

      • Example Display Recognition
      • Applicable Military Branches
      • Display Types
      • Issue Requirements
      • Issue Regulations
      • Who May Apply
      • Executive Order 9265
      • Administration Processing and Delivery
      • How To Apply For This Display Recognition and/or Medal
      • Mailing Address
      • Questions?
      • Other Display Recognitions
      • World War II Websites
      • Example Display Recognition:
        Actual Size: 8 1/2 x 11



        Military Branches

        Army Air Corps, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Navy

        Who May Apply

        • Veteran recipients
        • Active Duty recipients
        • Family Members of recipients
        • Estate Inheritors

        Display Types

        You have four display types to choose from:
        Black & White (No Color)
        Heavy Bond Enclosure

        Issue Requirements
        You must submit the followind:

      • An unaltered photocopy of your WD AGO 53-55 or other military issued document clearly displaying your award of the American Campaign.
      • Contact The War Library if you do not have a WD AGO 53-55: 1-310-532-0634.
      • Heavy Bond Enclosure
        Colors: Regal, Black, Navy
        Trimmed in Appearance Gold

        Ready for Mantle or Shelf Display

        NOTICE

        This Display Recognition is available ONLY to authorized recipients who possess orders, or authorization form, or release documentation that confirms award eligibility. (See "Issue Requirements"). To obtain either a Display Medal or a Display Recognition for your authorized award you will be required to provide military-issued documentation authorizing your award. There are no exceptions.

        WARNING!
        You must NOT submit a military issued document or photocopy that:

        • has been altered in any way by you after
          the original's official issue
        • contains information or corrections or
          additions that you entered
        • lists awards or training you knowingly did not receive
        • contains highlighting, colorizing or other markings you entered

        Be advised that on request any knowingly fraudulent document sent by you will be released to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that may result in prosecution and/or fine/imprisonment.

        Email Questions, or Phone: 310-532-0634

        Personnel Branch
        Processing and Delivery

        Style Admin Shipping Total
        Full Color .PDF (Printable) $7.50 Emailed $7.50
        Published Document only (Full Color) $14.00 $7.15 $21.15
        Published Document in Heavy Bond Enclosure (Full Color) $19.00 $7.15 $26.15
        Full Color Printable Certificates
        on CD-Rom (minimum 20 Certificates)
        $7.50 $7.50 By Count

      • Total/Shipping fees, above, apply to 50 U.S. states
      • Contact The War Library for international shipping cost
      • How to Apply

        You may apply for your Display Recognition using a...

      • Check Debit card (* Shipped within 1 week)
      • Charge card (* Shipped within 1 week)
      • Personal, Business, Bank or Cashiers Check ( Shipped in 6 weeks)
      • Money Order (* Shipped within 1 week)
      • (* Upon reception of required documentation)

        Complete and MAIL this APPLICATION FORM.
        Don't forget to include an unaltered COPY of your WD AGO 53-55 or other pre-arranged document(s).

        DISPLAY RECOGNITION and/or MEDAL APPLICATION FORM

        Mailing Address

        Records Chief (REC-AMW)
        The American War Library
        16907 Brighton Avenue
        Gardena CA 90247-5420

        Questions?

        Click here for answers to common questions

        Email: American Campaign Medal Display Recognition Inquiry

        Telephone: 1-310-532-0634

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        Issue Regulations


        American Campaign

        Establishing Authority


        Click for larger image

        The American Campaign Medal was established by Executive Order 9265 signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on November 6, 1942, and implemented by War Department Bulletin 56 (1942) and Navy Department General Orders Number 253 (1942).

        Effective Dates

        The American Campaign Medal was awarded for qualifying service between December 7, 1941, and March 2, 1946.

        Criteria

        The American Campaign Medal was awarded for For thirty days service outside the Continental United States but within the American Theater of Operations between December 7, 1941, and March 2, 1946; or, an aggregate service of one year within the Continental United States during the same period under the following circumstances:

        -- On permanent assignment outside the continental limits of the United States; or,

        -- On permanent assignment as a member of a crew of a vessel sailing ocean waters for a period of 30 consecutive days or 60 non-consecutive days; or,

        -- For service outside the continental limits of the United States in a passenger status or on temporary duty for 30 consecutive days or 60 non consecutive days; or,

        -- For service in active combat against the enemy and awarded a combat decoration or furnished a recognition by the commanding general of a corps, higher unit, or independent force that the individual actually participated in combat; or,

        -- For service within the continental limits of the United States for an aggregate period of one year.

        Order of Precedence

        The American Campaign Medal was worn after the American Defense Service Medal and before the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal. For members of the Women's Army Corps, it was worn after the Women's Army Corps Service Medal and before the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal.

        Devices

        Bronze service stars are authorized by both the Army and Navy and represent participation in engagements with the enemy.

        Designer

        The obverse of the American Campaign Medal was designed by Thomas Hudson Jones (1892-1969). The reverse was designed by Adolph A. Weinman (1870-1952).

        First Recipient

        The first person to receive the American Campaign Medal was General George C. Marshall, whose medal was presented on December 17, 1947.

        Description and Symbolism

        Obverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, a Navy cruiser is shown beneath a B-24 airplane flying overhead and sinking an enemy submarine in the foreground; in the background, there is a group of buildings. Above this scene (following the upper contour of the medal) are the words AMERICAN CAMPAIGN.

        The ship and airplane represent military might in defense of the United States; the sinking ship is a German submarine. This scene represents the successful interdiction of the submarine threat to the coast of the United States. The buildings in the background are the "arsenal of democracy," which provided military supplies and equipment to the United Nations in support of the war effort. The words identify the geographic area covered by this campaign medal.

        Reverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, an American bald eagle is shown perched on a rock. To the eagle's left, the dates 1941-1945 (in two lines); to the eagle's right, the words UNITED STATES OF AMERICA (in three lines).

        The bald eagle is the national symbol and thereby represents the American people. It is perched on a solid rock which represents the firmness of resolve and strength of America in prosecuting the war, as indicated by the dates.

        Ribbon

        The ribbon to the American Campaign medal consists of a background of light blue bisected in the center by pinstripes of blue, white and red. Inside the outer edges of the ribbon are another set of slightly wider pinstripes, these being in order (from the outside inward) white, black, red, and white. The Secretary of War directed that ribbons for the area campaign medals were to employ separate colors to denote the theaters they represented. The theater color was to predominate in each ribbon and the common relationship among all of them was to be achieved by using colored stripes put in the same place on each of the ribbons.

        Blue was selected as the predominate color for the American Campaign Medal because blue represents the United States and has been the official color of the United States since 1821. The pinstripes of blue, white, and red in the center are taken from the American Defense Service Medal and represent the national colors. The white, black, red, and white stripes inside each edge are the composite colors of the enemy (black and white for Germany, and red and white for Japan). Their position on the ribbon also alludes to the German threat to the east coast of the United States while the red and white represents the Japanese threat to the west coast. The outer edges of blue stand for the oceans which protect our shores.

        The American Campaign Medal was authorized Nov. 6, 1942, by Executive Order No. 9265 signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The medal was issued to commemorate the service performed by personnel of the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard who served during the periods and in the areas designated below.

        Effective Oct. 12, 1945, service members who served in the continental United States for an aggregate period of one year between Dec. 7, 1941 and March 2, 1946, inclusive, may be awarded the American Campaign Medal under such regulations as the Secretary of War and Secretary of the Navy may severally prescribe.

        The geographical definitions of the American Campaign Area is: East boundary. -- From the North Pole, south along the 75th meridian west longitude to the 77th parallel north latitude, thence southeast through Davis Strait to the intersection of the 40th parallel north latitude and the 35th meridian west longitude, thence sough along that meridian to the 10th parallel north latitude, thence southeast to the intersection of the equator and the 20th meridian west longitude, thence along the 20th meridian west longitude to the South Pole. West boundary -- From the North Pole, south along the 141st meridian west longitude to the east boundary of Alaska, thence south and southeast along the Alaskan boundary to the Pacific Ocean. thence south along the 130th meridian to its intersection with the 30th parallel north latitude, thence southeast to the intersection of the equator and the 100th meridian west longitude, thence south along the 100th meridian west longitude to the South Pole.

        LIST OF AUTHORIZED OPERATIONS AND ENGAGEMENTS

        Escort, antisubmarine, armed guard and special operations:

      • (1 star for participation in each of the followind:

        Convoy ON-67 21-26 Feb. 42

      • Convoy SC-107 03-08 Nov. 42
      • Task Group 21.13 12 Jul-28 Aug. 42
      • Task Group 21.14 27 Jul-10 Sept. 43
      • Task Group 21.15 24 Mar.-11 May 44
      • Convoy TAG 18 01-06 Nov. 42
      • USS Frederick C. Davis (DE-136) (antisubmarine operations) 24 April 45
      • USS Atik (SS Carolyn (antisubmarine operations) 27 March 42
      • USS Asterion (SS Evelyn) (antisubmarine operations) 22 March 42-31 Jan. 43
      • 1. Description: The Bronze medal is 1 1/4 inches in width. On the obverse is a Navy cruiser under full steam with a B-24 airplane flying overhead with a sinking enemy submarine in the foreground on three wave symbols, in the background a few buildings representing the arsenal of democracy, above the scene the words "AMERICAN CAMPAIGN." On the reverse an American bald eagle close between the dates "1941 - 1945" and the words "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA."

        2. Ribbon: The ribbon is 1 3/8 inches wide and consists of the following stripes: 3/16 inch oriental blue 67172; 1/16 inch white 67101; 1/16 inch black 67138; 1/16 inch scarlet 67111; 1/16 inch white; 3/16 inch oriental blue; center 1/8 triparted old glory blue 67178, white and scarlet; 3/16 inch oriental blue; 1/16 inch white; 1/16 inch scarlet; 1/16 inch black; 1/16 inch white; and 3/16 inch oriental blue.

        3. Criteria:a. The American Campaign Medal was awarded to personnel for service within the American Theater between 7 December 1941 and 2 March 1946 under any of the following conditions.

        (1) On permanent assignment outside the continental limits of the United States.

        (2) Permanently assigned as a member of a crew of a vessel sailing ocean waters for a period of 30 days or 60 nonconsecutive days.

        (3) Permanently assigned as a member of an operating crew of an airplane actually making regular and frequent flights over ocean waters for a period of 30 days.

        (4) Outside the continental limits of the United States in a passenger status or on temporary duty for 30 consecutive days or 60 days not consecutive.

        (5) In active combat against the enemy and was awarded a combat decoration or furnished a recognition by the commanding general of a corps, higher unit, or independent force that he actually participated in combat.

        (6) Within the continental limits of the United States for an aggregate period of one year.

        b. The eastern boundary of the American Theater is from the North Pole, south along the 75th meridian west longitude to the 77th parallel north latitude, then southeast through Davis Strait to the intersection of the 40th parallel north latitude and the 35th meridian west longitude, then south along the meridian to the 10th parallel north latitude, then southeast to the intersection of the Equator and the 20th meridian west longitude, then south along the 20th meridian west longitude to the South Pole. The western boundary is from the North Pole, south along the 141st meridian west longitude to the east boundary of Alaska, then south and southeast along the Alaska boundary to the Pacific Ocean, then south along the 130th meridian to its intersection with the 30th parallel north latitude, then southeast to the intersection of the Equator and the 100th meridian west longitude to the South Pole. The American Theater included North America (excluding Alaska) and South America.

        4. Components: The following are authorized components:

        a. Medal (regular size): MIL-DTL-3943/227. Medal set with full size medal and ribbon bar. NSN 8455-00-269-5760.

        b. Medal (miniature size): MIL-DTL-3943/227. Available commercially.

        c. Ribbon: MIL-DTL-11589/9. NSN 8455-00-257-0517. Available commercially.

        d. Streamer: The American Campaign ribbon is used as a streamer for one streamer on the Army flag. Although there are three designated campaigns in the American Theater, no Army units received campaign participation credit.

        5. Background: a. The American Campaign Medal was established per Executive Order 9265, dated 6 November 1942, by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and announced in War Department Bulletin 56, 1942. The criteria was initially announced in Department of the Army (DA) Circular 1, dated 1 January 1943, so that the ribbon could be authorized prior to design of the medal. The criteria for the medal was announced in DA Circular 84, dated 25 March 1948 and subsequently published in Army Regulation 600-65, dated 22 September 1948.

        b. The ribbon design was approved by the Secretary of War on 24 November 1942. The blue color represents the Americas; the central blue, white and red stripes (taken from the American Defense Service Medal ribbon) refers to the continuance of American defense after Pearl Harbor. The white and black stripes refer to the German part of the conflict on the Atlantic Coast, while the red and white stripes are for the Japanese colors and refer to that part of the conflict on the Pacific Coast.

        c. The medal was designed by Mr. Thomas Hudson Jones. The reverse side was designed by Mr. A. A. Weinman and is the same design as used on the reverse of the European-African-Middle Eastern and Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medals. The first medal was presented to General of the Army George C. Marshall on 17 December 1947.

        d. One bronze star is worn on the ribbon to indicate participation in an authorized campaign. There were three campaigns in the American Theater:

      • (1) Antisubmarine: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.
      • *(2) Ground Combat: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.
      • *(3) Air Combat: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.

        * These campaigns are not displayed as streamers on the Army flag.

        This medal is awarded for service within the American theater between 7 Dec 41 and 2 Mar 46, under any of the following conditions:

        1.Permanent assignment outside the CONUS

        2.Permanent assignment as aircrew members of airplanes making frequent flights over ocean waters for a period of 30 consecutive days or 60 days nonconsecutive

        3.Outside the CONUS in a passenger status or on temporary duty (TDY) for 30 consecutive days or 60 days nonconsecutive

        4.In active combat against the enemy, if personnel were awarded a combat decoration or furnished a recognition by the unit's commander stating that they actually participated in combat; or

        5.Served within the CONUS for an aggregate period of 1 year. Personnel who were assigned or attached to and present for duty with a unit that was accorded battle credit for the Antisubmarine Campaign are entitled to wear a bronze service star.

        The medal is 1 < inches in diameter, bearing in front an offshore scene depicting a cruiser, an airplane, and a sinking submarine underneath the inscription "American Campaign." The ribbon is predominantly medium blue, striped white, black, red, and white from right to left, and left to right within each edge. In the center are three stripes of red, white, and blue. The blue stripe is worn to the wearer's right.

        Executive Order 9265--American, European-African-Middle Eastern and Asiatic-Pacific campaign medals

        Source: The provisions of Executive Order 9265 of Nov. 6, 1942, appear at 7 FR 9106, 3 CFR, 1938-1943 Comp., p. 1224, unless otherwise noted.

        By virtue of the authority vested in me as President of the United States and as Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, it is hereby ordered that the American, European-African-Middle Eastern, and Asiatic-Pacific campaign medals, including suitable appurtenances, be established, and that the said medals may be awarded, under such regulations as the Secretary of War and the Secretary of the Navy may severally prescribe, to members of the land and naval forces of the United States, including the Women's Reserve of the United States Naval Reserve, and to members of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps who, during any period between December 7, 1941, inclusive, and a date six months subsequent to the termination of the present war, shall have served outside the continental limits of the United States in any of the respective areas as indicated by the names of the medals, such areas to be more precisely defined in the regulations hereby authorized.

        For the purposes of this order, the Territory of Alaska shall be considered as outside the continental limits of the United States.


        Editorial note: Executive Order 9265 was amended by the following provisions of Executive Order 9706 of Mar. 15, 1946, which appear at 11 FR 2811, 3 CFR, 1943-1948 Comp., p. 520:

      • 1. The European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal shall not be awarded for any service rendered subsequent to November 8, 1945.
      • 2. The American Campaign Medal and the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal shall not be awarded for any service rendered subsequent to March 2, 1946.
      • 3. Effective October 12, 1945, members and former members of the land and naval forces of the United States, including the Women's Reserve of the United States Naval Reserve, and former members of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps, who served in the continental United States for an aggregate period of one year between December 7, 1941, and March 2, 1946, inclusive, may be awarded the American Campaign Medal under such regulations as the Secretary of War and Secretary of the Navy may severally prescribe.
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