Pedro del Valle
|Born||28 Aug 1893|
|Died||28 Apr 1978|
|Country||Puerto Rico, United States|
Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbasePedro Augusto del Valle was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico to Inspector General of the Spanish colonial administration Dr. Pedro del Valle in 1893. Five years later, at the end of the Spanish-American War, the colony was transferred to the United States. In 1900, he moved to Maryland, United States with his family, where he would receive his primary and secondary education. In 1911, he received an appointment by George Radcliffe Colton to attend the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, United States; he graduated in Jun 1915 and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the US Marine Corps. During WW1, he commanded the Marine detachment aboard battleship USS Texas. In 1917, he became American citizens under the Jones-Shafroth Act. In 1919, he witnessed the surrender of the German High Seas Fleet. Later in the same year, he served under Major General Joseph Pendleton as his aide. Between 1926 and 1929, he served with the Gendarmerie of Haiti. In 1929, he returned to the United States to attend the Field Officers Course at the Marine Corps School in Quantico, Virginia, United States. In 1931, Brigadier General Randolph Berkeley appointed him to the Landing Operations Text Board at Quantico, which was the first organized unit dedicated to developing amphibious assault doctrine; in 1932, he authored "Ship-to-Shore in Amphibious Operations" in the Marine Corps Gazette. In 1933, he served as an intelligence officer in Havana, Cuba. Between 1935 and 1937, he served as the assistant naval attaché in Rome, Italy. In this role, he observed Italian forces during the Second Italo-Ethiopian War which ended in the Italian occupation of the Abyssinian Empire; he published "Roman Eagles Over Ethiopia" from his experiences during this period. In 1939, he enrolled in the Army War College in Washington DC, United States; upon graduation, he was made the executive officer of the US Marine Corps Division of Plans and Policies. In Mar 1941, he was made the commanding officer of the 11th Marine Regiment, which was an artillery unit.
ww2dbaseAfter the United States entered WW2 in Dec 1941, del Valle led 11th Marine Regiment in action on the island of Guadalcanal in mid-1942. His unit's performance during the Battle of the Tenaru on Guadalcanal led to his promotion to brigadier general in Oct 1942; as he retained command of 11th Marine Regiment, he became the only American officer of general rank to command a regiment-sized unit during the war. In 1943, he served as the Commander of Marine Forces overseeing Guadalcanal, Tulagi, and the Russell and Florida Islands. In Apr 1944, he was made the commanding officer of the Third Corps Artillery of III Marine Amphibious Corps; in this role, he participated in the campaign for Guam. In late Oct 1944, he was made the commanding officer of 1st Marine Division; in this role, he oversaw the unit's training on Pavuvu and in the Solomon Islands participated in the campaign for Okinawa, Japan.
ww2dbaseDuring WW2, del Valle earned the Legion of Merit and later a Gold Star to his Legion of Merit.
ww2dbaseAfter the war, del Valle was made Inspector General at the Headquarters Marine Corps. In 1946, he was briefly being considered as the first civilian governor of Puerto Rico, but local political opposition led to him asking to be excluded from consideration; President Harry Truman would ultimate appoint Jesús Piñero to serve in this role. He retired from military service in 1948 at the rank of lieutenant general. After retirement, he worked for the manufacturing firm International Telephone & Telegraph (ITT), serving as the company's representative in Cairo in Egypt, and then the company's president in South America until 1951. In 1953, he was a cofounder of Defenders of the American Constitution, a vigilante group aspiring to guard against Communist espionage. In the same year, he ran for the governor of Maryland, but was defeated during the Republican Party's primary election. In 1961, he cited from the anti-semitic and fabricated text Protocols of the Elders of Zion during a speech before the organization United States Daughters of 1812, claiming a link between Judaism and Communism. He published his autobiography in 1976 under the title of Semper Fidelis: An Autobiography. He passed away in Annapolis, Maryland in Apr 1978 and was buried in the United States Naval Academy Cemetery and Columbarium.
Last Major Revision: May 2019
Pedro del Valle Timeline
|28 Aug 1893||Pedro del Valle was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico.|
|17 Jun 1911||Pedro del Valle received an appointment by George Radcliffe Colton to attend the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, United States.|
|5 Jun 1915||Pedro del Valle graduated from the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, United States and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the US Marine Corps.|
|1 Oct 1942||Pedro del Valle was promoted to the rank of brigadier general.|
|1 Apr 1944||Pedro del Valle was made Commanding General of the Third Corps Artillery, US III Marine Amphibious Corps.|
|19 Feb 1946||New Mexico Senator Dennis Chavez recommended Pedro del Valle to President Harry Truman as the governor of Puerto Rico; local political opposition eventually led to del Valle asked to be excluded from consideration.|
|1 Jan 1948||Pedro del Valle retired from military service.|
|12 Apr 1961||Pedro del Valle cited from the anti-semitic text Protocols of the Elders of Zion during a speech before the organization United States Daughters of 1812, claiming a link between Judaism and Communism.|
|28 Apr 1978||Pedro del Valle passed away in Annapolis, Maryland, United States.|
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Captain Henry P. Jim Crowe, Guadalcanal, 13 Jan 1943