|5th Infantry Regiment|
Coat of arms
|Branch||United States Army|
|Motto(s)||“I'll Try, Sir”|
|Engagements||War of 1812|
World War II
Global War on Terrorism
|Battle honours||Presidential Unit Citation Korean Presidential Unit Citation 2|
U.S. Infantry Regiments
|4th Infantry Regiment||6th Infantry Regiment|
The 5th Infantry Regiment was created by an Act of Congress of 3 March 1815, which reduced the Regular Army from the 46 infantry and 4 rifle regiments it fielded in the War of 1812 to a peacetime establishment of 8 infantry regiments (reduced to 7 in 1821). The Army's current regimental numbering system dates from this act.
Six of the old regiments (4th, 9th, 13th, 21st, 40th and 46th) were consolidated into the new 5th Regiment, which was organized on 15 May 1815 under the command of Colonel James Miller. The current 5th Infantry traces its actual origins to the oldest of these regiments, the 4th, which was organized in May–June 1808. After three years' garrison duty in New England, the 4th assembled near Philadelphia in the spring of 1811. From there it proceeded by way of the Ohio and Wabash rivers to Vincennes, Indiana Territory, reporting to the territorial governor, William Henry Harrison, who assembled a force of volunteers and militia around the 4th. They proceeded into north central Indiana to confront the forces of the Shawnee leader Tecumseh and his brother Tenskwatawa, the Prophet, who attacked on the morning of 7 November in the Battle of Tippecanoe, where they were soundly defeated by U.S. forces.:453–454(Previously the old 4th US Infantry had served as the 4th Sub-Legion in Anthony Wayne's Legion of the United States which had fought at the Battle of Fallen Timbers in 1794).
In the spring of 1812, the 4th, commanded by then-Lieutenant Colonel Miller, was ordered to report to Brigadier General William Hull, commander of forces in the Northwest. They reached his headquarters at Detroit on 6 July, two days after being notified of the declaration of war. A week later, Hull's force crossed into Upper Canada, forming a base at Sandwich. On 9 August, marching south to rendezvous with a supply train from Ohio, the 4th charged and broke a British-Indian force at the Battle of Maguaga. A week after that, Hull surrendered Detroit and his entire command, including the 4th, to an inferior force of British, Canadians and Indians. The 4th marched into captivity at Quebec city where the troops spent a month aboard prison ships in the St. Lawrence River before being exchanged on 29 October. The 4th lost 30 more men during the month's voyage from Quebec to Boston.:454–455
The 4th spent the years 1813–14 on the Lake Champlain front, participating in the battles of the Chateauguay (25 October 1813) and Lacolle Mills (30 March 1814) and the siege of Plattsburgh (September 1814).
The new 5th Regiment's other ancestors also saw considerable action.
The 21st originally raised by Eleazar Wheelock Ripley was trained to both the US Manual of Arms as well as the British Light Infantry manual, Ripley felt that the 21st should be able to proficiently perform those skills which won the War of Independence, namely, hit and run and skirmish tactics, skills which was to serve the regiment well later in the war under a new commander. James Miller took over from Ripley in early 1814 after Ripley was promoted to brigadier general and saw the 21st through its most rigorous tests in battle. The 21st fought at York (26 April – 2 May 1813), Sackets Harbor (29 May 1813), as part of Ripley's Brigade at Chippawa, Lundy's Lane and Fort Erie (14 August 1814). At Lundy's Lane, Jacob Brown, the overall U.S. commander, asked Miller if he could take the British artillery on the high ground dominating the battlefield. Miller replied, "I'll try, sir." The 21st proceeded to break the British centre and take the guns with a volley and bayonet charge, holding them until the order to withdraw came from General Eleazar Ripley, Generals Brown and Scott having been incapacitated by wounds earlier in the battle. "I'll try, sir," became the 5th Infantry's regimental motto.
The 5th Regiment established headquarters at Detroit in 1815, and began a 30-year period in which it operated in the Upper Midwest, mostly in an area between the current states of Michigan and Nebraska, building and garrisoning a number of posts, protecting the great wave of settlers from native resistance, and serving as a first line of defense in case of another war with Great Britain. Perhaps the 5th's most lasting accomplishment was the construction in 1820–24, of Fort St. Anthony, at the mouth of the Minnesota River. On completion, the Army renamed the post in honor of its commanding officer, Colonel Josiah Snelling. Fort Snelling became the "seed pearl" around which the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul grew.
The only noteworthy engagement with Indians during this period was in the Black Hawk War of 1832. Even here, the 5th saw limited action, engaging in combat only in the final act of the war, the Battle of Bad Axe on 1–2 August near the modern town of Victory, Wisconsin. Bad Axe was the last major fight between whites and Indians east of the Mississippi other than the Seminole resistance in Florida.
On 1 March 1845, three days before he left office, President John Tyler signed a bill establishing an offer by the United States to annex the Republic of Texas, which had broken away from Mexico in 1836, and make it a state. This set off an immediate diplomatic crisis between the United States and Mexico over the southern boundary of Texas. Mexico claimed that the traditional southern boundary of Texas was the Nueces River; the U.S. and Texas claimed it was the Rio Grande, further south. Incoming President James Knox Polk directed Brigadier General Zachary Taylor to form an "Army of Observation" at Corpus Christi, Texas, ostensibly to protect the disputed zone from Mexican invasion. Five companies of the 5th Infantry under the command of Lieutenant Colonel James S. McIntosh reported to Taylor at Corpus Christi on 11 October 1845, two days before Texas voters accepted the annexation offer.
On 9 March 1846, Taylor's army left Corpus Christi to march to the Rio Grande and assert U.S. sovereignty over the expanded area. They arrived on 28 March, across the river from Matamoros and built a fortified camp, Fort Texas, on the site of the modern city of Brownsville, Texas. Taylor also established a supply base 27 miles east at Point Isabel, at the mouth of the river.
The 5th marched with Taylor from Fort Texas to Point Isabel in late April to clear their supply route of Mexican troops. While they were fortifying that base, the Mexican Army of the North laid siege to Fort Texas, beginning a bombardment of the post on 3 May. Taylor's army marched back from Point Isabel and met the enemy on 8 May, at Palo Alto, several miles east of the fort. In the resulting battle, the 5th Infantry broke a charge by Mexican lancers trying to break through to Taylor's supply train. Over night, the Mexicans withdrew to a better defensive position at Resaca de la Palma, which Taylor's army assaulted on the morning of the 9th. After stiff initial fighting, U.S. dragoons overran the Mexican artillery. The 5th and 8th Regiments then led a charge that broke the Mexican center and routed their army.
Taylor's troops relieved Fort Texas, crossed the Rio Grande into undisputed Mexican territory and occupied Matamoros, where they spent most of the summer. In late August Taylor moved south toward Monterrey, arriving on 19 September 1846. The 5th Infantry was assigned to the division of Brigadier General William J. Worth. The Battle of Monterrey began on 21 September. David Twiggs' division assaulted the city, soon finding itself in house-to-house fighting, while Worth's division went around the city, cutting off its communications. On the 23rd, the 5th Infantry captured Fort Soldado, surrounding the Mexican forces. Worth's division also fought its way into the city, contributing to the Mexicans' decision to negotiate. They surrendered the city to Taylor in exchange for a two months' truce.
After Monterrey, the 5th and the other regular regiments in Taylor's command were replaced by volunteers. They returned to Texas to join Major General Winfield Scott's expedition to Veracruz. The whole regiment was now together, though two companies were detached during the march to Mexico City and spent their time defending supply trains from guerilla attacks. Still in Worth's division, the 5th captured Perote on 22 April 1847.
Reaching the outskirts of Mexico City, the 5th was part of the flanking movement that led to the victory at Contreras on 19 August. The following day, they took the right flank in the assault on the bridgehead at Churubusco. The 5th provided storming parties for the assaults on the Molino del Rey on 8 September and Chapultepec Castle on the 13th; the full regiment followed up in the latter seizure. Later on the 13th, the 5th joined in the seizure of the Garita San Cosme, one of the city gates of Mexico City itself. This led to the city's surrender on the 14th.
In May 1848, after the United States Senate ratified the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, the 5th Infantry marched from Mexico City to Veracruz and returned to the United States. They spent 1849–50 in Arkansas and the neighboring Indian Territory, then replaced the 7th Infantry in Texas. In 1851 they were stationed mainly along the upper Brazos River; by 1854 they had moved to Fort McIntosh outside the city of Laredo.
In early 1857 the 5th moved to south Florida, where they spent several months skirmishing with Seminoles in the area around Fort Myers. The 5th left Florida in June for Fort Laramie in modern-day Wyoming, where they took part in the Buchanan administration's expedition against the Mormons. The regiment stayed at Camp Floyd (later Fort Crittenden) in the Great Salt Lake valley until the autumn of 1860, when it moved to New Mexico for operations against the Navajos.
The 5th Infantry spent the Civil War in the territory of New Mexico. The regiment was ordered to concentrate at Albuquerque in the spring of 1861 for a move east, but the department commander persuaded Washington to leave the 5th on the frontier.
In early 1862 a Confederate force from Texas invaded New Mexico. Four companies of the 5th formed the Union rear guard in the Confederate victory at Valverde on 21 February, after which the Confederates occupied Albuquerque and Santa Fe.
Two other companies of the 5th captured a field piece at the Battle of Glorieta Pass on 28 March, the beginning of the end for the Confederate forces. The 5th also fought in the action at Peralta on 15 April where the enemy lost a large part of their supply train. The Confederates ultimately withdrew to San Antonio, and the 5th spent the rest of the war on frontier duty, watching for another Confederate incursion, which never came.
On 1 June 1863 John F. Reynolds officially became colonel of the 5th; however, he was on detached service as a Major General of Volunteers, commanding a corps of the Army of the Potomac. He was killed a month later on the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg. His replacement as commander of the 5th was another volunteer general, Daniel Butterfield, the composer of the bugle call "Taps". Butterfield, also wounded at Gettysburg, did not join the regiment during the war.
When the Civil War ended, the bulk of the Regular Army returned from war service in the east to frontier duty in the west. The 5th Infantry moved slightly in the other direction, transferring from New Mexico to Kansas. By October 1868 it was strung out across seven different posts in western Kansas, with headquarters at Fort Riley.
Congress expanded the Army to 41 infantry regiments in July 1866, then reduced it to 25 in March 1869. The 5th absorbed half of the 37th Infantry, including its commander, Colonel and Brevet Major General Nelson A. Miles, who took command of the 5th. Under his command, the 5th, with some companies operating at times as mounted infantry, took part in many of the major Indian wars of the next twelve years.
In the spring of 1870, the 5th beat off Indian attacks on the Kansas Pacific Railroad. From July 1874 to February 1875, Miles led a mixed force of the 5th Infantry and 6th Cavalry in campaigns against the Southern Cheyenne, Comanche and Kiowa Indians along the Red and Washita Rivers in Indian Territory and Texas. The 5th Infantry also played a major role in the Red River War.
In the spring of 1876 the largest Indian confederation of the post-Civil War period formed in the northern plains, led by Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse of the Lakota Indians. The Army organized a three-pronged expedition to round up this force, but the Indians scored major victories against two of the three, stopping George Crook's southern pincer at the Battle of the Rosebud on 17 June and destroying half of the 7th Cavalry, vanguard of Alfred Terry's eastern column, at the Battle of the Little Bighorn on 25–26 June.
Reinforcements were rushed in, including the 5th Infantry, which built Fort Keogh at the mouth of the Tongue River in Montana, and began operating from there. Miles and the 5th caught up to Sitting Bull at the Battle of Cedar Creek in late October and, failing to negotiate his surrender, defeated his band in battle, forcing them to abandon most of their food and equipment. 2000 Lakota of this group surrendered on 27 October, although Sitting Bull himself escaped. Three companies of the 5th pursued Sitting Bull along the Missouri River, capturing his camp and scattering his followers on 18 December 1876.
Miles returned to the Tongue River with a force from the 5th and 22nd Infantry to pursue Crazy Horse. They captured several important prisoners in the valley below the Wolf Mountains on 7 January 1877, leading to a confrontation with the main body the following day on 8 January, the Battle of Wolf Mountain. The 5th, attacking superior numbers in near-blizzard conditions, drove the Lakota and Cheyenne force off the high ground, forcing them to retreat. The 5th continued to pursue and round up bands from the broken confederacy into the summer of 1877.
In July 1877 the Nez Perce Indians under Chief Joseph began to march east from Idaho across Montana, pursued by Major General Oliver O. Howard's troops from the Department of the Columbia. Miles was in position to interdict this force, and moved toward them in mid-September with battalions of the 5th Infantry and 7th Cavalry. They attacked the Nez Perces in a valley of the Bear Paw Mountains 30 September, capturing their horses and forcing their surrender on 4 October 1877 in the Battle of Bear Paw.
The Bannock Indians tried to repeat the Nez Perces' march a year later. A detachment of the 5th attacked their camp on Clark's Fork of the Yellowstone on 4 September 1878 and broke up their incursion. The 5th continued in active pursuit of independent Lakota bands until the surrender of Sitting Bull on 20 July 1881.
After several quiet years, the 5th Infantry was transferred to Texas in 1888 and later to points further east. By 1894 the regiment was dispersed from Texas to Kansas to Florida. With the closing of the frontier, its role had changed from Indian fighting to peacetime garrison duty.
46 members of the regiment received the Medal of Honor for service during this period:
The 5th Infantry did not arrive in time to participate in the Spanish–American War though it performed occupation duties. It saw action in the Philippines during the war of 1900. For service in Philippines, the 5th Infantry was presented one campaign streamer without inscription.
The 5th Infantry did not participate in combat operations in World War I, but did perform occupation duties.
The 5th Infantry was posted at Camp Paraiso, Panama Canal Zone from 1939–1943. It had previously been posted at Fort Williams, Maine, where it was nominally assigned to the inactive 9th Infantry Division.
With the onset of World War II, the 5th Infantry was made a part of the 71st Infantry Division and participated in an experiment to develop a "light" infantry division, capable of operating in harsh terrain from the mountains to the desert. The light division was deemed unnecessary for World War II and the 71st Infantry Division was converted back to a regular infantry division. The 5th was sent to Europe in January 1945 with the rest of the division and was in the front lines a month later. Initially taking defensive positions, the 5th was soon on the offensive, driving into Germany. The regiment fought through southern Germany, capturing the cities of Fulda, Bayreuth and Nuremberg. The 5th Infantry was the first U.S. Army unit to cross the Danube River and the first to invade Austria. For its participation in the Second World War, the 5th was presented the following campaign streamers: Rhineland, Central Europe, and American Theater.
The 5th Infantry performed occupation duty in Austria and Germany for a year after the war, and was inactivated in November 1946. The regiment reactivated in South Korea on 1 January 1949, with personnel and support units from the departing 7th Infantry Division. It constituted the core of the 5th Infantry Regimental Combat Team (RCT) with the mission to provide security while all U.S. troops were withdrawn from the country. The 5th RCT left Korea effective 30 June 1949 and was transferred to Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, where it was when the Korean War began.
It deployed to Korea on 25 July 1950 to reinforce Eighth Army in the shrinking area of United Nations control known as the Pusan Perimeter. In July and August it reinforced the 25th Infantry Division, then the 1st Cavalry Division on the Naktong River line. In September the RCT was attached to the 24th Infantry Division, replacing the 34th Infantry Regiment. It remained with the 24th Infantry Division until January 1952 when it officially became a separate RCT again and was assigned to IX Corps.
The 5th Regimental Combat Team consisted of:
Two 5th Infantry soldiers received the Medal of Honor for service in Korea:
On 11 October 1953, Company A, 1st Section, Machine Gun Platoon, Company D, and Forward Observer Team, 555th Field Artillery Battalion were awarded the Presidential Unit Citation, for actions in the vicinity of Songnae-dong, Korea on 12 June 1953. On 18 November 2005 the award was amended to include the following units:
In 1959 the 1st Battle Group, 5th Infantry was assigned to the 1st Infantry Division at Fort Riley, Kansas. It was reassigned to the 25th Division on 1 February 1963 and reorganized and redesignated as the 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry on 12 August.
It was sent to Vietnam in January 1966 and it was one of the few mechanized units to serve in that war.
The 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry won a Valorous Unit Award as part of the 2nd Brigade Task Force, 25th Infantry Division, which:
distinguished itself by extraordinary heroism in ground combat against the Viet Cong in the Republic of Vietnam during the period January through April 1966. Ordered to secure a base of operations for itself and the remainder of the 25th Infantry Division in the vicinity of the town Tan An Hoi in the Cu Chi District of Vietnam, the Brigade Task Force embarked on 66 days of continuous combat operations in a completely Viet Cong dominated, heavily entrenched and fiercely defended area. On January 1966, combat operations began to seize, clear and secure the area selected for a base of operations. For the initial four days, brigade combat elements moved forward against devastating automatic weapons and continual harassing sniper fire, well established mine fields and vast underground systems of tunnels, trenches, spider holes and fortifications unrivaled in Vietnam. Displaying extraordinary heroism and unwavering determination, task force elements methodically cleared the area of a fanatical enemy force that was manning the fortifications. This entire action was characterized by numerous acts of personnel sacrifice and heroism. During the period 30 January to 5 April, the Brigade conducted eleven major operations against the Viet Cong with battalion or larger sized forces engaged in fierce battle against a hostile enemy. On 5 April 1966, after 66 days of continuous combat, the Brigade had seized, cleared and secured the base of operations and surrounding area in the vicinity of Cu Chi, Republic of Vietnam. A total of 449 Viet Cong had been killed by body count. Viet Cong activities throughout the Cu Chi District were severely disrupted and the Viet Cong greatly discredited in the eyes of the local populace. During those momentous 66 days, the Brigade displayed utmost courage and indomitable spirit, and as a unit it demonstrated extraordinary heroism as it unwaveringly and unceasingly pitted itself against hard core, experienced, and entrenched and determined enemy forces. The indomitable spirit and extraordinary heroism with which the 2nd Brigade Task Force engaged, battled and defeated a fortified and determined enemy during this period of continuous combat operations is in keeping with the finest tradition of the United States Army and reflects great credit upon all members of the Task Force who participated in the Battle for Cu Chi.
Under the command of Lieutenant Colonel (later Major General) Andrew H. Anderson, the 5th Infantry (Mech) received its third Presidential Unit Citation:
The 1st Battalion (Mechanized), 5th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division and its attached units distinguished themselves by extraordinary heroism in combat operations against numerically superior enemy forces in the Republic of Vietnam from 18 August to 20 September 1968. During this period the 1st Battalion Task Force, through reconnaissance in force, ambush, counterambush, and reaction missions effectively destroyed a regimental-size enemy force and prevented the enemy from seizing the initiative in its "third offensive." The officers and men of the Task Force displayed outstanding bravery, high morale, and exemplary esprit de corps in fierce hand-to-hand combat and counteroffensive action against well disciplined, heavily armed and entrenched enemy forces. An example of the outstanding bravery and aggressiveness occurred 21 August during a reconnaissance in force mission. The lead elements of Company C, 1st Battalion came under heavy mortar, rocket-propelled grenade, machine gun, and automatic weapons fire. The company deployed against the enemy forces while the scout platoon protected the company flank and prevented reinforcement by a battalion-size enemy unit. Through skillful use of close supporting fires from artillery, helicopter gunship and tactical air, the officers and the men of the Task Force repulsed human wave counterattacks and defeated a numerically superior enemy force, which left one hundred and eighty-two dead on the battlefield. The individual act of gallantry, the teamwork and the aggressiveness of the officers and men of the 1st Battalion Task Force continued throughout the period of prolonged combat operations, resulting in the resounding defeat of enemy forces in their operational area. The heroic efforts, extraordinary bravery and professional competence displayed by the men of the 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry and attached units are in the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon themselves, their units, and the Armed Forces of the United States."
The 5th fought for five years in Vietnam. For its participation in the Vietnam War, the 5th Infantry was presented the following campaign streamers: Counteroffensive, Counteroffensive Phase II, 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; Presidential Unit Citation, Ben Cui; Valorous Unit Award, Cu Chi.
In 1975 the 5th Infantry was deployed to Orote Point, Guam. Their mission was to build the first tent city to help process the refugees from Vietnam as part of Operation New Life. They not only built the city, but they also did supplies, cooking, and set up the electricity to maintain the city. Their mission lasted 90 days as part of the 5th Support Group.
Three 5th Infantry soldiers received the Medal of Honor for service in Vietnam:
After the Vietnam War the 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry returned to Hawaii where it served with the 25th Infantry Division until the late 1980s when it spent a brief period with the 2nd Infantry Division in Korea.
In August 1995 the 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment was reassigned to Fort Lewis, Washington, as part of the 1st Brigade "Lancers," 25th Infantry Division (Light). In 1996 the 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry participated in the Advanced Warfighting Experiment, which culminated with a National Training Center rotation in March 1997. The battalion received the Army Superior Unit Award for its outstanding contribution to the Advanced Warfighting Experiment. For its participation in the Advanced Warfighting Experiment the 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry was presented with the Army Superior Unit Award, 1996–1997.
The 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry was reactivated on 16 August 1995 and assigned to the 3rd Brigade, 25th Infantry Division. The 2nd Battalion served a one-year tour of duty in Afghanistan from May 2004 to May 2005 as part of the 25th Division's Task Force Bronco. For its service in Afghanistan, the 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry was awarded a Meritorious Unit Commendation. As part of the modular conversion of the 25th Infantry Division, the 2nd Battalion was inactivated on 16 November 2005.
In early 2002 the 1st Brigade "Lancers" began its conversion from a light infantry brigade to a Stryker brigade. It began a one-year tour of duty in Iraq in October 2004 where they participated in Operation Phantom Fury. The brigade returned to Fort Lewis in September 2005. The 1st Brigade was temporarily inactive from June–October 2006. The 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment is now part of the 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team "Arctic Wolves," 25th Infantry Division, Fort Wainwright, Alaska.
In September 2011, the 3rd Brigade of the 1st Armored Division deployed to Afghanistan. 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment was responsible for operations in southern Wardak Province until July 2012.
In December 2013, 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment once again deployed to Afghanistan, this time to Herat province. On 6 May 2014, the Battalion Command Sergeant Major, CSM Martin Barreras was wounded in action during an engagement with enemy personnel. He later died from his injuries.
U.S. military decorations
Fort Snelling, originally known as Fort Saint Anthony, is a United States military fortification located at the confluence of the Minnesota and Mississippi rivers in Hennepin County, Minnesota. The Mississippi National River and Recreation Area, a National Park Service unit, includes historic Fort Snelling.
The fort is located in Fort Snelling Unorganized Territory in Hennepin County, Minnesota, named after the fortification. The Minnesota Historical Society now runs the fort, located atop a bluff along the river. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources runs Fort Snelling State Park, protecting the land at the bottom of the bluff. Fort Snelling once encompassed both parcels.
The fort is designated as a National Historic Landmark and has been named a "national treasure" by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.Jim Rockford (television character)
James Scott Rockford is a fictional character on the television series The Rockford Files. The character, played by James Garner, is a struggling private investigator operating in the greater Los Angeles area. Rockford is the principal character of the series, and Garner was the only actor to appear in every episode of the series.