27th Rifle Division (Soviet Union)

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27th Rifle Division

I Formation: 1918–41

II Formation: 1941–45
Country Soviet Union
Branch Red Army
Type Infantry division

Russian Civil War

Polish-Soviet War
World War II


Honorary Revolutionary Red Banner (2) (1st formation)

Order of the Red Banner Order of the Red Banner (2nd formation)
Battle honours

Omsk (1st formation)
Named for the Italian Proletariat (1st formation)

Gdynia (2nd formation)

Vitovt Putna

Kuzma Podlas
External image
27th Rifle Division
27th Rifle Division in 1920

The 27th Rifle Division (Russian: 27-я стрелковая дивизия) was a tactical unit in the Red Army of Bolshevist Russia and then the USSR, active between 1918 and 1945. First formed during the Russian Civil War on November 3, 1918 as part of 5th Red Army. Commanded by Vitovt Putna, it was transferred to the 16th Red Army in 1920,[1] and took part in the Polish-Bolshevist War. Defeated in the battles of Radzymin and Ossów (collectively known as the Battle of Warsaw), it practically ceased to exist.

Reformed in Russia, it returned to Poland in 1939 and took part in the joint Nazi and Soviet invasion of Poland as part of the 3rd Army's 4th Rifle Corps,[2] reaching Parafianów and the line of Serwecz River on September 18, 1939. It was then stationed in Soviet-occupied Poland with its headquarters in Suchowola and regiments stationed in Augustów, Grajewo and Suchowola. By 2 October 1939, the division had been subordinated to the 16th Rifle Corps of the 11th Army.[3]

On 22 June 1941, the division was again part of 4th Rifle Corps, 3rd Army (Soviet Union), itself part of the Western Special Military District which quickly became the Western Front. During Operation Barbarossa, the division was attacked by the German 256th and 162nd Infantry Divisions. Its regiments fought separately and retreated eastwards, towards Sokółka. By June 24 the division lost 40% of its soldiers and the following day unsuccessfully tried to defend the Swisłocz river line. In accordance with orders, it defended the line until the end of the day when it was annihilated. Only small groups of soldiers from the division reached Soviet lines in July and early August. The division was officially disbanded on September 19, 1941.

The second formation of the division was recreated August 1941 at Arkhangelsk, (renamed from Rebolsky Direction Division on September 24, 1941) and the division subsequently fought against the Finnish Army.[4] The division was subordinated to the 26th Army of the Karelian Front in May 1942, and was deployed in the far north of Russia until the end of 1944.[5] The unit completed the war with the 19th Army of the 2nd Belorussian Front in May 1945.

27th Rifle Division subordination
in the Russo-German War[5]
Date assigned Rifle Corps Army Front (or reserve)
Jun 1941 4th 3rd Western
Sep 1941[6] - 7th Karelian
Oct 1941 - Kem Op. Group Karelian
May 1942 - 26th Karelian
Apr 1944 - 32nd Karelian
Sep 1944 127th Light 32nd Karelian
Oct 1944 132nd 26th Karelian
Dec 1944 132nd 19th Reserve
Feb 1945 132nd 19th 2nd Belorussian

Postwar, the division was stationed in Poland near Gdynia with the Northern Group of Forces and disbanded in the summer of 1945.[7]


  1. ^ "Гражданская война" [Civil War]. samsv.narod.ru (in Russian). Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 10 September 2016. 
  2. ^ Meltyukhov 2001, p. 299 (Table 27).
  3. ^ Meltyukhov 2001, p. 350 (Table 29).
  4. ^ "27-я стрелковая дивизия" [27th Rifle Division]. samsv.narod.ru (in Russian). Archived from the original on 2014-11-29. Retrieved 10 September 2016. 
  5. ^ a b Combat composition of the Soviet Army
  6. ^ Designated as the "Rebolsky Division"
  7. ^ Feskov et al 2013, p. 146.