Maj. Gen. Hugh A. Drum

Hugh A. Drum

Maj. Gen. Hugh A. Drum commanded the US Army, Pacific (Hawaiian Department) from 1935-1937. The son of a Civil War veteran, he entered the Army at age 19 while attending Boston College under a special provision by President McKinley that allowed a direct commission for those whose fathers were killed in the Spanish-American War. He later received his Bachelor's degree from Boston College in 1921.

Originally an Infantry officer, Drum served in the Philippines in the early 1900's. During World War I, Gen. Pershing named him to the staff of the American Expeditionary Force as chief of staff for the First Army. His efforts there were rewarded by a temporary promotion to brigadier general.

After the war Drum served as the director of training for the School of the Line at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where he taught the doctrine of open warfare that he and Gen. Pershing had practiced in France. From there he went to the War Department in Washington where he had a much publicized battle with Col. Billy Mitchell about the disposition of the Army Air Corps. Gen. Drum successfully lobbied Congress not to have the Air Corps broken out into a separate service.

Following a stint at Fort Hayes, Ohio, Drum returned to Washington in 1933 to serve as deputy to the Chief of Staff, Gen. Douglas MacArthur. When Chief of Staff Gen. Malin Craig retired in 1939, Drum was passed over in favor of Gen. George Marshall. Despite this disappointment, he received a promotion to lieutenant general in August 1939. Controversy continued to follow him after the outbreak of World War II. Hoping to be the Gen. Pershing of the next great war, he was disappointed with an offer from Secretary of War Henry Stimson to go to what he perceived to be a low-profile assignment in China. After being passed over for that mission, Drum was relegated to home duty assignments until mandatory retirement in 1943.

Despite this end to his career, Gen. Drum was recognized as an outstanding staff officer. His awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star, and the Mexican Border Service Medal. He died on 3 October 1951. 



United States Army Pacific postures and prepares Army forces, sustains and protects those forces in the theater, sets the theater, support the development of an integrated multi-domain Joint force, and builds military relationships that strengthen alliances and develop partner defense capacity in order to promote a free and open Indo-Pacific.


General Robert B. Brown Commanding General

Robert B. Brown

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