1st New Guinea Infantry Battalion

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1st New Guinea Infantry Battalion
Soldiers from the 1st New Guinea Infantry Battalion on board the transport Frances Peat in November 1944.JPG
Troops from the 1st New Guinea Infantry Battalion on a transport ship in November 1944
Active 1944–46
Country  Australia
Allegiance Allied
Branch Army
Type Infantry
Size Battalion
Colours Red and Green
Battle honours South West Pacific 1942–45, Kokoda Trail, Kokoda–Deniki, Nassau Bay, Tambu Bay, Finschhafen, Scarlet Beach, Liberation of Australian New Guinea, Sio–Sepik River, Kaboibus–Kiarivu and Bonis–Porton
Disbanded June 1946
Insignia
Unit Colour Patch PIR colour patch.png

The 1st New Guinea Infantry Battalion (1 NGIB) was a battalion of the Australian Army during World War II. One of four infantry battalions raised in New Guinea, 1 NGIB was formed in March 1944. It later became part of the Pacific Islands Regiment before being disbanded in June 1946.

History[edit]

The battalion was formed in March 1944 in the territory of New Guinea, during World War II, in order to fight against the Japanese. Its soldiers were primarily natives of New Guinea, under the command of Australian officers and NCOs. Although formed late in the war the battalion would ultimately serve in a number of the allied campaigns in New Guinea, including during the offensives on New Britain and Bougainville.[1] The New Guinea battalions each had an establishment of about 77 Europeans and 550 native soldiers.[2]

The Papuan Infantry Battalion (PIB) along with the 1st and 2nd New Guinea Infantry Battalion were amalgamated to form the Pacific Islands Regiment in November 1944. The 3rd and 4th New Guinea Infantry Battalion joined the regiment in 1945, although 4 NGIB was soon disbanded, whilst the 5th New Guinea Infantry Battalion—although authorised—was never raised.[3] The battalion disbanded in June 1946.[4]

Battle honours[edit]

  • World War II: South West Pacific 1942–45, Kokoda Trail, Kokoda–Deniki, Nassau Bay, Tambu Bay, Finschhafen, Scarlet Beach, Liberation of Australian New Guinea, Sio–Sepik River, Kaboibus–Kiarivu and Bonis–Porton.[5]

Commanding officers[edit]

  • Major W.M. Edwards (1944)
  • Lieutenant Colonel B.G. Dawson (1944–45)
  • Lieutenant Colonel J.S. Jones (1945)

Decorations[edit]

Casualties[edit]

  • 15 killed, 1 missing, 17 died, 25 wounded.[7]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Sinclair 1990, p. 303.
  2. ^ Dennis et al 1995, p. 449.
  3. ^ Sinclair 1990, p. 273.
  4. ^ Sinclair 1990, p. 296.
  5. ^ The battle honours listed above are those awarded to the PIR in 1966 as listed in Byrnes 1989, p. 269.
  6. ^ Figures for awards to PIR are difficult to accurately determine as most sources are incomplete, these figures are from Sinclair 1990, p. 298 and Byrnes 1989, pp. 228–246. Neither Sinclair or Byrnes seem to include complete lists however.
  7. ^ Byrnes 1989, p. 269.

References[edit]

External links[edit]