29th Infantry Regiment (United States)

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29th Infantry Regiment
29 INF COA.gif
Coat of arms
Active 1901-46; 1949-2007
Country  United States
Branch Army
Type Infantry
Role Training
Part of TRADOC
Garrison/HQ Fort Benning, Georgia
Nickname Pioneers (special designation) [1]
Motto "We Lead the Way"
Engagements Philippine Insurrection
World War II
*Battle of the Bulge/
Korean War
Insignia
Distinctive unit insignia 29 Inf Rgt DUI.gif
U.S. Infantry Regiments
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28th Infantry Regiment 30th Infantry Regiment

The 29th Infantry Regiment ("Pioneers"[1]) is a unit of the United States Army first formed in 1813.

History[edit]

Establishment and early missions[edit]

The first 29th Infantry was constituted on 29 January 1813, and saw service in the War of 1812. Following this, the regiment was merged with the 6th Infantry. The second 29th Infantry was constituted on 3 May 1861, as the 3rd Battalion of the 11th Infantry, one of the nine "three-battalion" regiments of regulars, each battalion containing eight companies of infantry, in contrast to the original ten regular regiments of infantry, which were organized on the traditional ten-company line.

Following the Civil War, the Army was reorganized by Congress in July 1866, and the 11th was divided into three regiments, each battalion receiving two additional companies and being organized along traditional lines. The 1st Battalion retained the designation of the 11th Infantry, while the 2nd Battalion became the 20th Infantry and the 3rd Battalion the 29th Infantry. The 29th Infantry was disbanded in the 1869 reduction of the Army to 25 regiments.

The present 29th Infantry was created by Congressional order on 2 February 1901. The regiment actually formed on 3 March 1901 at Fort Sheridan, Illinois under the command of Colonel W.M. Van Horn.

One year after its organization, the 29th set sail from San Francisco for the Philippines. The regiment served with distinction on the islands of Cebu, Panay, and Negros. After quelling the insurgency, the regiment remained to suppress bandits until its departure in April, 1904. The 29th performed garrison duties in Utah and Arizona until 1907, when it returned to the Philippines. In 1909 it was transferred in garrison duties in upstate New York, where it remained until 1915, when it was dispatched to Panama for duty guarding the Panama Canal. The regiment participated in a number of jungle exercises, and also guarded German prisoners of war.

The 29th left Panama in September 1918 and arrived at Camp Beauregard, Louisiana shortly thereafter. The regiment was assigned to the newly formed 17th Division, which was preparing to sail to Europe. In late September an epidemic of influenza struck which delayed preparations. By the time the epidemic was over, the Armistice of 1918 had been signed, ending the war in Europe. The regiment remained in Camp Shelby, Mississippi demobilizing troops returning from overseas.

In 1919, the 29th arrived at Camp Benning and immediately assumed the duties of the Demonstration Regiment for the then-new Infantry School. In addition, it was given the mission of actually building the post. For eight years the men of the 29th lived in tents while they built the Cuartel Barracks, Gowdy Field, and Doughboy Stadium, among other things. During this time the regiment adopted the motto "We Lead The Way" in light of its mission as Demonstration Regiment and trainers for the Infantry School.

World War II and later[edit]

When the United States entered World War II, the 29th Infantry moved to Iceland, where it defended the rocky coastline until shipped to England in preparation for the invasion of Europe. In December, 1944 the regiment deployed to France where it provided security to the "Red Ball Express", the supply route which kept the armored thrust rolling into Germany. During the "Battle of the Bulge", the regiment secured and defended river crossings along the Meuse River in the vicinity of Namur and Liege, Belgium. The Regiment saw heavy combat near Jemelle and Rochefore, Belgium and was then deactivated in October, 1946. The 29th served in the Army of occupation at Frankfurt on Main and then in the Bremen Enclave near Bremerhaven at Camp Grohn.

Reactivated on the island of Okinawa in May, 1949, the 29th Regiment was attached to the 24th and 25th Divisions from 24 July 1950 to 5 September 1950. The 1st and 3rd Battalions suffered heavy losses during fighting in the vicinity of Chinju, Masan, and during the establishment of the Pusan perimeter in the Korean War. The regiment returned to Okinawa in September 1950 where it remained until it returned to Fort Benning in November 1954.[2]

Current mission[edit]

Official photo, January 5, 2007

During the time between the World Wars, the 29th Infantry Regiment trained infantry soldiers and leaders, demonstrated tactics and tested innovations in Infantry warfare at Fort Benning including providing soldiers for the first parachute unit in the U.S. armed forces.

On July 17, 2007, Headquarters & Headquarters Company, 29th Regiment, was deactivated and reflagged 197th Infantry Brigade to follow suit with the rest of the Army under the regimental system. 1st Battalion and 2nd Battalion, 29th Infantry Regiment, remain flagged as such, and continue to provide support the United States Army Infantry School.

Today, elements of the 29th Infantry Regiment are located at Fort Benning, GA. The 1,300 officers, noncommissioned officers, soldiers, and civilians assigned to 1st and 2nd Battalion provide instruction in courses that train privates to colonels on and in a wide variety of subjects and equipment; subject matter expertise for the development and evaluation of new doctrine and equipment; support Reserve Component units in their periodic training; provide troops, vehicles, and equipment to support Infantry School resident instruction; and have proponency for a variety of field manuals.[3]

Courses[edit]

In its role under the United States Army Infantry School, the battalions of the 29th Infantry Regiment provides training to the soldiers of the US Army. Below is a list of the courses currently taught by the 29th:

  • Anti-Armor Leader Course
  • Bradley Transition Course
  • Bradley Master Gunner
  • Combat Leader Course
  • Combat Lifesaver Certification
  • Combatives Course
  • Infantry Mortar Leader Course
  • Maintenance Instructions
  • Javelin Course
  • Mechanized Leaders Course
  • Mechanized Leaders A3 Course
  • Small Unmanned Aerial vehicle Course
  • Sniper School
  • Stryker Leaders Course
  • Stryker Transition Course

[4]

Active battalions[edit]

  • 1st Battalion (Mechanized / Stryker) - "Outriders"
  • 2nd Battalion - "Pioneers"

References[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Army Center of Military History.