The 12e Régiment blindé du Canada
(12th Armoured Regiment of Canada) is a Canadian Forces
The Canadian Forces , officially the Canadian Armed Forces , are the unified armed forces of Canada, as constituted by the National Defence Act, which states: "The Canadian Forces are the armed forces of Her Majesty raised by Canada and consist of one Service called the Canadian Armed Forces."...
Armoured warfare or tank warfare is the use of armoured fighting vehicles in modern warfare. It is a major component of modern methods of war....
A regiment is a major tactical military unit, composed of variable numbers of batteries, squadrons or battalions, commanded by a colonel or lieutenant colonel...
based in CFB Valcartier
Canadian Forces Base Valcartier is a Canadian Forces Base located in the municipality of Saint-Gabriel-de-Valcartier, approximately north of Quebec City...
, on the outskirts of Quebec City
Quebec , also Québec, Quebec City or Québec City is the capital of the Canadian province of Quebec and is located within the Capitale-Nationale region. It is the second most populous city in Quebec after Montreal, which is about to the southwest...
. The regiment has both Regular Force and Primary Reserve components.
Régiment blindé du Canada's abbreviation is 12e
Both the regular and militia regiments serve mainly in the armoured reconnaissance role but a squadron of tanks is now being formed out of Valcartier.
Its origins are in The Three Rivers Regiment
, a militia (Reserve Force) regiment based in Trois-Rivières
Trois-Rivières is a city in the Mauricie region of Quebec, Canada, located at the confluence of the Saint-Maurice and Saint Lawrence Rivers. It is situated in the Mauricie administrative region, on the north shore of the Saint Lawrence River across from the city of Bécancour...
, a town halfway between Montreal
Montreal is a city in Canada. It is the largest city in the province of Quebec, the second-largest city in Canada and the seventh largest in North America...
and Quebec City. It originally formed in 1871 as the Three Rivers Provisional Battalion of Infantry. The battalion was given a number in 1880 (86th "Three Rivers" Battalion of Infantry) and raised to regiment status in 1900 (86th Three Rivers Regiment).
In the First World War, the Canadian militia infantry units were not mobilized, but instead new units were formed from volunteers from the militia and new recruits. The militia units generally became organizations for recruiting, induction and preliminary training. The 86th Regiment recruited the 178th "Overseas" Battalion, CEF, in 1916. The 178th Battalion was broken up in England in 1917, but enough of its former members fought at the Battle of Amiens (1918) that the battalion qualified for a battle honour
A battle honour is an award of a right by a government or sovereign to a military unit to emblazon the name of a battle or operation on its flags , uniforms or other accessories where ornamentation is possible....
, which the 12e
The regiment also perpetuates the 259th Battalion, Canadian Rifles, Canadian Expeditionary Force (Siberia).
In the post-war reorganization of the Militia, the 86th Regiment lost its number, becoming simply The Three Rivers Regiment. In the 1936 reorganization, it became an infantry tank unit, The Three Rivers Regiment (Tank).
In the Second World War, the regiment mobilized an armoured regiment, which sailed to England in 1941. After two years of training, the 12th Armoured Regiment (Three Rivers Regiment) invaded Sicily, where it supported 1st Canadian Infantry Division
The 1st Canadian Infantry Division was a formation mobilized on 1 September 1939 for service in the Second World War. The division was also reactivated twice during the Cold War....
throughout Operation Husky almost exclusively and gained a reputation for tenacity and courage. The 12th CTR was the first Canadian Armoured Corps unit to destroy panzers in battle; a Panzer III
Panzer III was the common name of a medium tank that was developed in the 1930s by Germany and was used extensively in World War II. The official German designation was Panzerkampfwagen III translating as "armoured battle vehicle". It was intended to fight other armoured fighting vehicles and...
and one of the Mark IV "Specials"
The Panzerkampfwagen IV , commonly known as the Panzer IV, was a medium tank developed in Nazi Germany in the late 1930s and used extensively during the Second World War. Its ordnance inventory designation was Sd.Kfz...
were destroyed by its men at Grammichele
Grammichele ; Latin: Echetla; Medieval: Occhiolà) is a town and comune in the province of Catania in Sicily, southern Italy. It is located at the feet of the Hyblaean Mountains, some 13 km from Caltagirone.-History:...
on July 15. The regiment also took part Operation Baytown
Operation Baytown was a part of the Allied invasion of Italy during World War II on 3 September 1943.The operation consisted of the landing by sea of the British 13th Corps of British 8th Army at Reggio di Calabria...
, landings on the Italian mainland in September of 1943, as well and were often called upon to support British infantry battalions based on their quiet professionalism. Though the formation was originally known as 1st Tank Brigade the name was changed to 1st Canadian Armoured Brigade
1 Canadian Army Tank Brigade, later known as 1 Canadian Armoured Brigade, was composed of the 11th, 12th and 14th Canadian Armoured Regiments and saw service in the Italian campaign and in north-west Europe during the Second World War.-History:...
After the war, the regiment was given a (partially) French name: Le Régiment de Trois-Rivières (24th Armoured Regiment).
In 1968 the regiment was renamed and expanded to include a new Regular Force regiment in addition to the original Militia regiment. The Regular Force unit is called 12e
Régiment blindé du Canada, and the Militia unit is named 12e
Régiment blindé du Canada (Militia) (or in French, 12e Régiment blindé du Canada (Milice)
). The number in the regimental title commemorates the Second World War unit, 12th Armoured Regiment (Three Rivers Regiment).
The Great War: Amiens1
, Sibérie 1918-19
The Allied intervention was a multi-national military expedition launched in 1918 during World War I which continued into the Russian Civil War. Its operations included forces from 14 nations and were conducted over a vast territory...
The Second World War: Débarquement en Sicile, Grammichele, Piazza Armerina, Valguarnera, Agira, Adrano, Vallée du Troina, Sicile 1943, Termoli, Le Ravin, Ortona, Cassino II, Ligne Gustav, Vallée du Liri, Ligne Hitler
The Hitler Line was a German defensive line in central Italy during the Second World War. The strong points of the line were at Aquino and Piedimonte. In May 1944, the line was re-named the Senger Line, after General von Senger und Etterlin, one of the generals commanding Axis forces in the area...
, Ligne Trasimene, Arezzo, L'Avance à Florence, Monte La Pieve, Monte Spaduro, Italie 1943–1945, Apeldoorn, Nord-Ouest de L'Europe 1945
1. awarded for service of 178th (Canadien-Français) Battalion, CEF
The 178th Battalion, CEF was a unit in the Canadian Expeditionary Force during the First World War.Based in Victoriaville, Quebec, the unit began recruiting during the winter of 1915/16 in Military Districts 4 and 5, and in eastern Ontario...
Trois-Rivières Military Museum
The museum collects, preserves, researches, interprets and exhibits artifacts which reflect the military history of Trois-Rivières, the 12th Armoured Regiment (Three Rivers Regiment) story and the history of the Canadian Militia. The museum serves as a training medium to teach regimental history, and to stimulate and foster within the general public an ongoing interest in the regiment, its activities and accomplishments. The Museum is affiliated with: CMA
The Canadian Museums Association is a national organization for the promotion of museums in Canada.The Canadian Museums Association is the national organization for the advancement of the Canadian museum sector, representing Canadian museum professionals both within Canada and internationally. The...
The Canadian Heritage Information Network is a Canadian government-supported organization that provides a networked interface to Canada's heritage, largely through the World Wide Web. It aims to give access to Canada's heritage for both Canadians and a worldwide audience, by supporting the...
The Organization of Military Museums of Canada is a national organization for the promotion of military museums in Canada.The OMMC was established in 1967 by a group of military museums, historians, and military history enthusiasts. It has over 40 individual and 60 institutional members including...
and Virtual Museum of Canada
The Virtual Museum of Canada is Canada's national virtual museum. With a directory of over 3,000 Canadian heritage institutions and a database of over 600 virtual exhibits, the VMC brings together Canada's museums regardless of size or geographical location.The VMC includes virtual exhibits,...
While the Regiment is the oldest of the Regular Force armoured regiments, it's Regular Force component takes it's precedence from it's date of rentry into the Regular Force (1968). The Reserve Force component continues to take it's precedence from 1871 within the Reserve Force.