26th Rifle Division (Soviet Union)

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26th Rifle Division
Active 3 November 1918–1957
Country  USSR
Type Rifle Division
Battle honours Zlatoust, Revolutionary Red Banner, Order of Suvorov II Class

The 26th Rifle Division was a rifle division in the Soviet Red Army during the Russian Civil War, World War II and the Cold War. The division was formed on 3 November 1918 on the Eastern Front (China Border), sent to the Soviet-German Front in August 1941. Ended the war in Poland, where it was assigned to the Northern Group of Forces. In 1957 the division was reorganized as the 158th Motorized Rifle Division.[1] FEskov et al. 2004 says the division was disbanded in 1959.

Russian Civil War[edit]

The division was formed on the Eastern Front in November 1918. It fought the entire civil war period on the eastern front and ended the war on the Chinese border. The division remained there until 1929 when it moved to the coastal region.

Composition[edit]

  • 76th Rifle Regiment
  • 77th Rifle Regiment
  • 78th Rifle Regiment
  • 26th Artillery Regiment

World War II[edit]

Assigned to the 1st Red Banner Army at the start of the World War II, the division was ordered west in August 1941. Assigned to the Northwestern Front's 11th Army upon arrival. The division spent 1942 through September 1944 assigned to Northwestern or 2nd Baltic Fronts 11th, 27th, 34th, 1st Shock, and 22nd Armies. During this time the division took part in the Demyansk Army Group Offensive Operation (1st Phase) from 7 January to 20 May 1942 and second phase from 15 to 28 February 1943. The Leningrad-Novgorod Strategic Offensive's Staraia Russa-Novorzhev Offensive from 18 February 1944 to 1 March 1944.

In September 1944 the division was reassigned to the 1st Baltic Fronts 43rd Army's 90th Rifle Corps. The army was reassigned to the 3rd Belorussian Front in January 1945 where it remained assigned for the remainder of the war. In the last part of the war the division participated in the Baltic Strategic Offensive's Riga Army Group Offensive from 14 September to 24 October 1944 and the East Prussian Offensive's Insterburg-Königsberg Offensive, Konigsberg Offensive, and Zemland Offensive.

Composition[edit]

  • 87th Rifle Regiment (formerly the 76th Rifle Regiment)
  • 312th Rifle Regiment (formerly the 77th Rifle Regiment) (awarded the Honorific Designation “Novgorod”)
  • 349th Rifle Regiment (formerly the 78th Rifle Regiment)
  • 19th Artillery Regiment (formerly the 26th Artillery Regiment)
  • 62nd Separate Antitank Artillery Battalion
  • 459th Mortar Regiment (from 27.10.1941 to 19.10.1942)
  • 67th Reconnaissance Company
  • 9th Sapper Battalion
  • 70th Separate Signals Battalion (formally 820th Sep. Signals Company)
  • 30th Medical Battalion
  • 29th Decontamination Company
  • 52nd Auto-Transport Company (formally 150th and 479th Auto-Transport Company)
  • 78th Field Bakery
  • 59th Veterinary Field Hospital (formally 196th Veterinary Field Hospital)
  • 20th Divisional Artillery Workshop Battalion
  • 171st Field Postal Station (formally 8812th Field Postal Station)
  • 261st Field Cash Office of the State Bank

Post War[edit]

Assigned the Northern Group of Forces after the war the division remained in Poland until it was reorganized into the 158th Motorized Rifle Division.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Crofoot, Craig (2005). Armies of the Bear, Orders of Battle Vol 1, Part 2. Tiger Lily Publications LLC.