140th Infantry Regiment (United States)

The 140th Infantry Regiment (also known as the "Sixth Missouri") was an infantry formation of the Missouri National Guard.[1]

140th Infantry Regiment
140RegtCOA.jpg
Coat of arms
Active
  • June 1898–May 1899
  • 1901–1914
  • 1917–1919
  • 1921–1945
  • 1946–1963
Country United States
Allegiance Missouri
BranchMissouri National Guard
TypeInfantry
Nickname(s)"Sixth Missouri"
Motto(s)Siempre Listo (Spanish)
("Always Ready")
CampaignsSpanish–American War

World War I

World War II
Insignia
Distinctive unit insignia140 Inf Rgt DUI.jpg
U.S. Infantry Regiments
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139th Infantry Regiment 141st Infantry Regiment

It was first organized as the 6th Infantry Regiment of the Missouri National Guard in 1898 during the Spanish–American War, and was soon mustered into Federal service as the 6th Missouri Volunteer Infantry Regiment. Mustered out following service in the occupation of Cuba, it was reorganized as the 6th Battalion of Infantry in 1901 and expanded into a regiment of the same number in 1908, but disbanded in 1914.

The regiment was reconstituted in 1917 for service in World War I, and in Federal service consolidated with the 3rd Missouri Infantry Regiment to form the 140th Infantry. Part of the 35th Division, it served with the American Expeditionary Forces in the Meuse-Argonne. Reorganized in 1921, it served in World War II in the continental United States, then was reactivated after the end of the war. It was inactivated during a reorganization of the army in 1963.

HistoryEdit

The 6th Infantry Regiment of the Missouri National Guard was organized on June 27, 1898, during the Spanish–American War. As the 6th Missouri Volunteer Infantry Regiment, it mustered into Federal service between July 20 and 23 at Jefferson Barracks. The regiment served in the United States Army with the occupation force in Cuba, and mustered out at Savannah, Georgia, on May 10, 1899. Reorganized on July 10, 1901 as the 6th Battalion of Infantry in the Missouri National Guard, it was expanded into a regiment on January 23, 1908. It was again disbanded on July 25, 1914.[2]

On June 29, 1917, the regiment was reactivated for service in the First World War when it consolidated with elements of the 3rd Missouri to create the 140th Infantry in October 1917. The new regiment was assigned to the 35th Division. Within the 35th Division they were assigned to the 70th Brigade alongside the 139th Infantry. Companies of the regiment were drawn primarily from the southeast of the state; Company A hailed from Lexington, Companies B and C were recruited from St. Joseph, Company D came from Sedalia. Companies E, F, G, and H were recruited from Doniphan, Willow Springs, Richmond, and Dexter respectively. Companies I, K, L, and M were pulled from Kennett, Sikeston, Cape Girardeau and Poplar Bluff respectively. Additional troops were recruited from Jefferson City, Seymour, Carterville, and West Plains. The regiment organized and trained in the United States at Camp Doniphan, Oklahoma and then shipped out for France where it began training under British tutelage in June 1918. In July, the 140th had its first taste of combat in the Gérardmer sector in the Vosges Mountains, where they conducted raids on German forces. They were moved to the Saint-Mihiel sector in September where they served as a reserve for the First Army. The regiment soon participated in the Meuse-Argonne offensive, the largest battle the American Expeditionary Forces waged during the war. After five days of intense battle, they were relieved by elements of the 1st Division and were placed in the Sommedieue sector where they launched harassing attacks on the enemy positions until the Armistice of November 11, 1918, ended the war.[2] They were deactivated in 1919 with the rest of the 35th Division.

When World War II broke out and America became involved due to the Attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, the 140th Infantry moved to California in order to defend against possible Japanese attacks on the West Coast. The 140th Infantry was relieved of assignment to the 35th Infantry Division on 27 January 1943 and assigned to the Western Defense Command. The regiment was transferred to Camp Howze, Texas on 5 February 1944 and assigned to the XXIII Corps on 10 April 1944 and the XXXVI Corps on 19 September 1944. The 140th was assigned to the Replacement and School Command on 17 November 1944 and moved to Camp Swift, Texas on 10 December 1944. At Camps Howze and Swift, the 140th Infantry regiment was reduced to a training cadre and provided an accelerated six-week course of infantry training (four weeks of familiarization, qualification, and transition firing, and two weeks of tactical training) to 2,900 men, who were formerly members of disbanded anti-aircraft and tank destroyer units or who had volunteered for transfer to the infantry from other branches of the Army..[3] On 23 February 1945, the 140th Infantry moved to Camp Rucker, Alabama, where they were inactivated on 20 September 1945.

The 140th finally cased its colors in 1963 when it was formally disbanded as a maneuver infantry regiment.[4] It serves today as the 140th Regiment, and runs the RTI (Regional Training Institute) for the Missouri Army National Guard.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ U.S. Department of the Army (1953). The Army Lineage Book. Volume II: Infantry. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office. pp. 406–407.
  2. ^ a b "Full text of "From Doniphan to Verdun: the official history of the 140th infantry"".
  3. ^ Beardwood, Jack (1946). History of the Fourth Army, Study No. 18. Historical Section, Army Ground Forces. p. 70-71.
  4. ^ "Former 140th Infantry Regiment plans biannual reunion". March 5, 2007.

Further readingEdit