6th Infantry Regiment (United States)

6th Infantry Regiment (United States)

Infobox Military Unit
unit_name=6th Infantry Regiment

caption=6th Infantry coat of arms
dates=January 11, 1812- Present
garrison=Baumholder, Germany
motto=Unity is Strength
colors=Blue and White
battles=War of 1812
Mexican War
American Civil War
Indian Wars
War with Spain
Philippine Insurrection
Mexican Expedition
World War I
World War II
Vietnam War
Armed Forces Expeditions - Panama
War in Southwest Asia
Iraq Campaign.
notable_commanders=Zachary Taylor
2nd Lt Richard B. Garnett
identification_symbol_label=Distinctive Unit Insignia
US Regiments
previous=5th Infantry Regiment
next=7th Infantry Regiment
The 6th Infantry Regiment (“The Regulars”) was formed in 1812. Its most famous commander was Zachary Taylor, later the twelfth President of the United States. The Motto, "Regulars, By God!" was from a the Battle of Chippawa, in which British general Riall noticed that the approaching regiment had on the uniforms of militia, which the British had defeated at Queenstown Heights. Instead, the Americans pressed the attack. Riall is assumed to have said. "Those are Regulars, By God!" (though the only source of this was opposing U.S. general Winfield Scott).


The regiment has participated in: The War of 1812, The Mexican-American War, The Civil War, Indian Wars from 1823-1879, the Spanish-American War, Philippine-American War, Mexican Expedition, World War I, World War II, and Vietnam. The 6th IR was also part of IFOR, Task Force Eagle, which was charged with implementing the military aspects of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia-Herzegovina. In January 1994, the 1st Battalion, Sixth Infantry deployed to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia for Operation Able Sentry as part of the United Nations Preventive Deployment Force. In May 1998, Bravo Company was deployed again to Bosnia-Herzegovina in support of Operation Joint Endeavor, Operation Joint Forge (OJE/OJF)In 2001 elements were deployed again to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Kosovo. In March 2003, Charlie Company 2nd Battalion deployed with 5th Corps HQ to Kuwait and participated in the initial invasion of Iraq. The rest of the 2nd Battalion and 1st Battalion deployed to Iraq in late April 2003 as part of 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armord Division. The "Regulars" arrived in Baghdad in May 2003, and were the first to relieve elements of the 3rd Infantry Division in Baghdad. The 1st & 2nd Battalions deployed again in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in November 2005 and April 2008.


The regiment fought in the War of 1812, the Mexican-American War, the American Civil War, the Indian Wars (1823-1879), the Spanish-American War, the Philippine-American War (1899-1913), the Pancho Villa Expedition (1916-1917) World War I, World War II and the Vietnam War. The unit was also a part of the Implementation Force (“IFOR”) in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Elements of the regiment were deployed to the Republic of Macedonia in August 1997. Elements deployed to Kosovo and Macedonia in 2001. Operation Iraqi Freedom 2003-

The regiment is currently stationed in Baumholder, Germany as part of the 2nd brigade of the 1st Armored Division.


Pre-World War I


Constituted 11 January 1812 in the Regular Army as the 11th Infantry Regiment.

Organized March-May 1812 in Vermont, New Hampshire, and Connecticut.

Consolidated May-October 1815 with the 25th Infantry (constituted 26 June 1812) and the 27th, 29th, and 37th Infantry (all constituted 29 January 1813) to form the 6th Infantry Regiment.

Consolidated 1 May 1869 with the 42d Infantry Regiment, Veteran Reserve Corps (constituted 21 September 1866), and consolidated unit designated as the 6th Infantry Regiment.


The present Sixth United States Infantry traces its lineage back to 11 January 1812, when the Congress authorized a strengthening of the regular Army in preparation for the threatening conflict that became known as the War of 1812. The unit was first known as the 11th Infantry Regiment and served as such on the Canadian border throughout the War of 1812.

In 1831 and 1832, the regiment entered the series of actions to be known as the Black Hawk War, against the Sac and Fox Indians. On 2 August 1832, the 6th Infantry caught the Indians at the junction of the Bad Axe River with the Mississippi (in present day Wisconsin), and killed most of Black Hawk's band (records say that 950 Sac were massacred), earning the Campaign Streamer - BLACK HAWK. In 1837, the units of the Regiment left Jefferson Barracks for Florida via Louisiana. As part of a force commanded by Colonel Zachary Taylor, the Regiment entered the Second Seminole Indian War in eastern Florida in 1837. It was the first "guerrilla-style" war fought by US troops.

At the outset of the Civil War in April 1861, the Regiment was directed to hurry eastward from California and join the Federal forces. According to one biographer of the time, "Several of the Regiment's best and bravest officers, honest in the mistaken construction of the Constitution and true to their convictions as to their duty, had tendered their resignations and given themselves to the Confederate cause." One of those officers was the regimental commander, Major Lewis Armistead. During the American Civil War, the 6th U.S. Infantry Regiment lost during service 2 Officers and 29 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded, and 1 Officer and 43 Enlisted men by disease. Total lost: 75.

For six years after the Civil War, the Regiment served at various stations in Georgia and South Carolina, and moved to Fort Hays, Kansas, in October 1871. For the next several years, the regiment saw duty on the frontier in Kansas, Colorado, the Dakotas, Iowa, Wyoming, Idaho and Utah. In 1872, the regiment was in the Dakota Indian Territory, fighting many engagements against hostile Indian forces. In 1872 and 1873, the regiment earned Campaign Streamers - NORTH DAKOTA 1872 and NORTH DAKOTA 1873. The next several years saw much action for the regiment during the Indian Wars, and they were awarded Campaign Streamers - MONTANA 1879, LITTLE BIG HORN, CHEYENNES, and UTES.

In 1880, the Regiment moved to Fort Thomas, Kentucky, where it remained until called to action again in June 1898, in the Spanish-American War. On 1 July 1898, the Sixth Regiment took the brunt of the fighting during the charge up San Juan Hill, but carried its standard high and bravely, and always forward, and won the battle.

The Regiment sailed, in late July 1898, to the Philippines to help quell the insurgents in the Philippine-American War. The Moro tribe was one of the toughest enemies the 6th had ever faced--every one of them fought to the death, and preferred to do it in hand-to-hand style. The regiment fought over fifty engagements, and it left with Campaign Streamers for JOLO, NEGROS in 1899, and PANAY in 1900. In March 1905, the regiment returned to the Philippines to do battle with the Moros again. For three days in 1906, elements of the regiment fought in the Battle of Bud Dajo, one of the fiercest conflicts of the entire island campaign. The successful ending to the battle broke the Moro strength and ended the fighting in that part of the island.

Following service in the Philippines, the 6th returned to The Presidio in California. In May 1914, it entered into service on the Mexican border. In March 1916, it proceeded to San Antonio, Chihuahua, as part of the Punitive Expedition. In February 1917, the Punitive Expedition was withdrawn and the regiment returned to the United States, stationed at Ft. Bliss. Because of their action, the regiment was awarded another campaign streamer - MEXICO 1916-1917.

World War I

*LineageAssigned 18 November 1917 to the 5th Division


In December 1917, the 6th Regiment was assigned to the 10th Infantry Brigade, 5th Infantry Division, and began training stateside. In the latter part of May 1917, the 6th Infantry Regiment was declared ready for introduction to combat and was placed at the disposal of the French for service at the front. In July 1918, a strategic offensive plan was agreed upon by the Allied commanders, the immediate purpose of which was to reduce the salients which interfered with further offensive operations. One of these was the St. Mihiel salient. The First U.S. Army was organized on August 10 and directed to launch an offensive on September 12 to reduce this salient. The 6th Regiment was destined to play an important role in this operation. On 1 December 1918, the 6th Regiment conducted a march from Luxembourg to the city of Trier, Germany, becoming the first American troops to enter that ancient city.

Inter-war Period


Relieved in August 1921 from assignment to the 5th Division

Assigned 24 March 1923 to the 6th Division

Relieved 16 October 1939 from assignment to the 6th Division

Reorganized 15 July 1940 as the 6th Infantry (Armored) and assigned to the 1st Armored Division

Redesignated 1 January 1942 as the 6th Armored Infantry


Between World War I and World War II, the regiment returned to the United States, where they continued to train to become one of the best regiments in the Army. In 1936, they were designated a mechanized unit by the War Department.

In February 1941, the Regiment was stationed at Fort Knox, Kentucky, conducting routine training and activities under the command of COL Harry B. Crea. In April, the regiment began supplying cadre for the Infantry Regiment of the 4th Armored Division, which was to be stationed at Pine Camp, NY. In May, the regiment continued to get replacements and conduct routine training. The regiment consisted of a regimental HQ, an A/T company, the regimental band, and two battalions - each with an HQ company and four line companies. In August, the regiment moved to Louisiana to conduct maneuvers, then returned to Ft. Knox in November. A few weeks later, on December 7, war was declared; soldiers awaiting release were returned to their barracks.

World War II

6th IR Staged at Fort Dix on April 8, 1942, for a departure to Ireland on May 31, 1942 from the Port of New York. They arrived on June 11, 1942, and then prepared for their entry into North Africa. They landed on North Africa on December 21, 1942, and landed in Italy on October 28, 1943. The regiment remained there until it was reorganized on July 20, 1944 and its elements redesignated as elements of the 1st Armored Division as follows:
*6th Armored Infantry (less 2d and 3d Battalions) as the 6th Armored Infantry Battalion
*2d Battalion as the 11th Armored Infantry Battalion
*3d Battalion as the 14th Armored Infantry Battalion

After 20 July 1944 the above units underwent changes as follows:
*6th Armored Infantry Battalion converted and redesignated 1 May 1946 as the 12th Constabulary Squadron; concurrently relieved from assignment to the 1st Armored Division and assigned to the 1st Constabulary Regiment. Inactivated 20 September 1947 in Germany. Converted and redesignated 10 October 1950 as the 6th Infantry (less 2d and 3d Battalions) and relieved from assignment to the 1st Constabulary Regiment
*11th Armored Infantry Battalion converted and redesignated 1 May 1946 as the 11th Constabulary Squadron; concurrently relieved from assignment to the 1st Armored Division and assigned to the 1st Constabulary Regiment. Inactivated 20 September 1947 in Germany Converted and redesignated 7 April 1949 as the 11th Armored Infantry Battalion and relieved from assignment the 1st Constabulary Regiment Redesignated 10 October 1950 as the 2d Battalion, 6th Infantry
*14th Armored Infantry Battalion converted and redesignated 1 May 1946 as the 14th Constabulary Squadron; concurrently relieved from assignment to the 1st Armored Division and assigned to the 15th Constabulary Regiment Inactivated 20 December 1948 in Germany and relieved from assignment to the 15th Constabulary Regiment; concurrently converted and redesignated as the 14th Armored Infantry Battalion and assigned to the 1st Armored Division Redesignated 10 December 1950 as the 3d Battalion, 6th Infantry, and relieved from assignment to the 1st Armored Division

Post World War II


6th Infantry activated 16 October 1950 in Germany.

Reorganized 1 June 1958 as a parent regiment under the Combat Arms Regimental System.

Withdrawn 16 June 1989 from the Combat Arms Regimental System and reorganized under the United States Army Regimental System.


On May 17, 1967, the 1st Battalion, Sixth Infantry was reorganized as a standard Infantry Battalion and was assigned to the 198th Infantry Brigade, in the Americal (23 Infantry) Division. The 6th Infantry was the division's first element ashore, arriving at Chu Lai in October to participate in its thirty-fifth campaign and ninth war. After a brief initial operation south of Duc Pho, the Battalion was assigned the mission of securing the installation at Chu Lai.

1-6th Infantry Regiment participated in Task Force Oregon, Task Force Miracle, Operation Wheeler/Wallowa, Operation Burlington Trail, and had the mission of protecting Americal Division Headquarters and Chu Lai Defense Command from enemy ground mortar and rocket attacks. The 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry was awarded the Valorous Unit Citation for its victory at the battle of Lo Giang, 7-11 February 1968. Task Force Miracle was formed in February 1968 during the enemy's Tet offensive when the city of Da Nang was threatened by the 60th Main Force Viet Cong Battalion. The 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry and 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry assisted the Marines in the fighting. After four days of fierce fighting, the threat to Da Nang was obliterated and the task force was deactivated and returned to the Americal area of operation. During the Vietnam Conflict, the Sixth was awarded streamers - COUNTEROFFENSIVE PHASE III, TET COUNTEROFFENSIVE, COUNTEROFFENSIVE PHASE IV, COUNTEROFFENSIVE PHASE V, COUNTEROFFENSIVE PHASE VI, TET 69 / COUNTEROFFENSIVE, SUMMER-FALL 1969, WINTER-SPRING 1970, SANCTUARY COUNTEROFFENSIVE, COUNTEROFFENSIVE PHASE VII, and CONSOLIDATION I.

On 15 February 1969, the battalion was released from the 198th Infantry Brigade and assigned to the 23rd Infantry Division, Americal Division. On 13 September 1972 was reassigned to the 1st Armored Division in West Germany.

In 1974, the regiment was split again, this time between Germany and the United States. The 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Battalions were assigned to the Berlin Brigade. The 1st Battalion was assigned to the 1st Brigade, 1st Armored Division in Illesheim, Germany. The 3rd and 4th Battalions were assigned to the 2nd Brigade, 5th Infantry Division at Fort Polk, LA, where elements participated in Operation Just Cause in Panama in 1989, earning campaign streamer - PANAMA, and the Valorous Unit Award for Panama. In 1989, the unit also received the Army Superior Unit Award. The 5th Battalion was assigned to the 3rd Brigade of the 5th Infantry Division. The 6th Battalion was assigned to 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division in Bamberg, Germany, while the 7th Battalion was assigned to 3rd Brigade, 1st Armored Division, also in Bamberg. In 1990, the sixth and seventh battalions were called on to participate in the regiment's tenth war, Operation Desert Shield / Desert Storm. During that war in the Persian Gulf, the regiment earned Campaign Streamers - DEFENSE OF SAUDI ARABIA, LIBERATION AND DEFENSE OF KUWAIT, and CEASE-FIRE, as well as Valorous Unit Citations for Iraq and Iraq-Kuwait.

In 1993, the 5th Infantry Division was inactivated, and the 3rd, 4th and 5th Battalions were re-flagged under the 2nd Armored Division at Fort Hood; the 1st Battalion moved from Illesheim to Vilseck, Germany, and came under the 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division; and the 6th and 7th Battalions were inactivated.


Campaign Participation Credit

*War of 1812:
# Canada;
# Chippewa;
# Lundy's Lane

*Mexican-American War:
# Vera Cruz;
# Cerro Gordo;
# Churubusco;
# Molino del Rey;
# Chapultepec

*Civil War:
# Peninsula;
# Manassas;
# Antietam;
# Fredericksburg;
# Chancellorsville;
# Gettysburg;
# Virginia 1862

*Indian Wars:
# Seminoles;
# Black Hawk;
# Little Big Horn;
# Cheyennes;
# Utes;
# South Dakota 1823;
# Kansas 1829;
# Nebraska 1855;
# Kansas 1857;
# North Dakota 1872;
# North Dakota 1873;
# Montana 1879

*Spanish-American War:
# Santiago

*Philippine-American War:
# Jolo;
# Negros 1899;
# Panay 1900

*Mexican Expedition:
# Mexico 1916-1917

*World War I:
# St. Mihiel;
# Meuse-Argonne;
# Alsace 1918;
# Lorraine 1918

*World War II:
# Algeria-French Morocco (with arrowhead);
# Tunisia;
# Naples-Foggia;
# Anzio;
# Rome-Arno;
# North Apennines;
# Po Valley

# Counteroffensive, Phase III;
# Tet Counteroffensive;
# Counteroffensive, Phase IV;
# Counteroffensive, Phase V;
# Counteroffensive, Phase VI;
# Tet 69/Counteroffensive;
# Summer-Fall 1969;
# Winter-Spring 1970;
# Sanctuary Counteroffensive;
# Counteroffensive, Phase VII;
# Consolidation I

*Armed Forces Expeditions:
# Panama
# Republic of Macedonia Able Sentry (1-6 INF) 1994

*Southwest Asia:
# Defense of Saudi Arabia;
# Liberation and Defense of Kuwait;
# Cease-Fire


#Presidential Unit Citation (Army) for ORAN, ALGERIA
#Presidential Unit Citation (Army) for MT. PORCHIA
#Valorous Unit Award for LO GIANG
#Valorous Unit Award for PANAMA
#Valorous Unit Award for IRAQ
#Valorous Unit Award for IRAQ-KUWAIT
#Army Superior Unit Award for 1989
#Joint Meritorious Unit Award (1-6 INF) for 1994
#Presidential Unit Citation (Army) for Operation Iraqi Freedom


* Lt John Grattan of the Grattan Massacre was of the 6th Infantry Regiment

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