17th Infantry Regiment (United States)

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17th Infantry Regiment
17 INF COA.png
Coat of arms
Country United States
Branch United States Army
Garrison/HQJoint Base Lewis–McChord,
Fort Bliss
Nickname(s)"The Buffalos"
Motto(s)Truth and Courage
EngagementsAmerican Civil War
Spanish–American War
World War II
Korean War
Vietnam War
William Wilson Quinn
Clement A. Trott
Distinctive unit insignia17 INF DUI.png
U.S. Infantry Regiments
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16th Infantry Regiment 18th Infantry Regiment

The 17th Infantry Regiment is a United States Army infantry regiment. An earlier regiment designated the 17th Infantry Regiment was organized on 11 January 1812, but it was consolidated with four other regiments as the 3rd Infantry in the post-war reorganization of the army following the War of 1812, due to the shattering losses it sustained at the River Raisin; the current 17th Infantry was constituted as the 17th Regiment of Infantry on 3 May 1861.

Civil War[edit]

The 17th Infantry Regiment served in the Army of the Potomac, in Sykes' Division of the 5th Army Corps, its badge was a white cross patee.

During the Battle of Fredericksburg, the 17th Infantry suffered heavy losses in the assault on Robert E. Lee's Confederates entrenched behind a stone wall. "For one entire day, (December 14) the men of the 17th lay flat on their faces eighty yards in front of the famous stone wall, behind which the enemy was posted in large numbers and any movement on their part was sure to draw the fire of rebel sharpshooters."

On the second day of the Battle of Gettysburg, the 17th Infantry regiment, commanded by Colonel James Durrell Greene, fought in tough hand-to-hand combat in the Wheatfield; the 17th US Infantry lost 24 KIA and 125 WIA/MIA in this engagement. [1]

Coat of arms[edit]

A buffalo, displayed on the a shield below the stone wall, represents the regiment's history in the Korean war; the "Buffalo" nickname was adopted at the suggestion of the 17th Regiment's commander in the Korea, Col. William W. "Buffalo Bill" Quinn.[2][3]

The shield is blue, as it is the color of the infantry.

The crest is a sea lion taken from the Spanish Arms of Manila to represent the fighting for that city in 1898.

The two arrows represent the Indian campaigns the 17th Regiment participated in.

Medal of Honor recipients[edit]

Spanish–American War
World War II
Korean War


  • Constituted 3 May 1861 in the Regular Army as the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry
  • Organized 6 July 1861 at Fort Preble, Maine
  • Reorganized and redesignated 13 December 1866 as the 17th Infantry
  • Consolidated 1 June 1869 with the 44th Infantry, Veteran Reserve Corps (constituted 21 September 1866), and consolidated unit designated as the 17th Infantry
  • Assigned 5 July 1918 to the 11th Division
  • (2d and 3d Battalions inactivated 1 October 1921 at Fort McIntosh, Texas; activated 24 June 1922 at Fort Crook, Nebraska)
  • Relieved 24 March 1923 from assignment to the 11th Division and assigned to the 7th Division
  • Relieved 15 August 1927 from assignment to the 7th Division and assigned to the 6th Division
  • (2d Battalion inactivated 31 October 1929 at Fort Des Moines, Iowa)
  • Relieved 1 October 1933 from assignment to the 6th Division and assigned to the 7th Division (later redesignated as the 7th Infantry Division)
  • (2d Battalion activated 1 July 1940 at Camp Ord, California)
  • Relieved 1 July 1957 from assignment to the 7th Infantry Division and reorganized as a parent regiment under the Combat Arms Regimental System
  • (4th Battalion activated 1984)
  • 1986 - 1st and 2nd Battalions re-activated at Fort Richardson, AK as part of the 1st Brigade, 6th Infantry Division (Light).
  • Withdrawn 16 November 1986 from the Combat Arms Regimental System and reorganized under the United States Army Regimental System
  • (4th Battalion inactivated 1993)
  • Redesignated 1 October 2005 as the 17th Infantry Regiment
  • (4th Battalion activated in Jan 2011 at Fort Bliss TX under 1st Brigade 1st Armored Division)
  • 4th Battalion de-activated in June 2019 at Fort Bliss TX under 1st Brigade 1st Armored Division (reflagged as 2nd Battalion 37th Armored Regiment)

Campaign participation credit[3][edit]

  • Civil War: Peninsula; Manassas; Antietam; Fredericksburg; Chancellorsville; Gettysburg; Wilderness; Spotsylvania; Cold Harbor; Petersburg; Virginia 1862; Virginia 1863
  • Indian Wars: Little Big Horn; Pine Ridge; North Dakota 1872
  • War with Spain: Santiago
  • Philippine Insurrection: Manila; Malolos; San Isidro; Tarlac; Mindanao; Luzon 1899; Luzon 1900
  • Mexican Expedition: Mexico 1916-1917
  • World War II: Aleutian Islands (with arrowhead); Eastern Mandates (with arrowhead); Leyte; Ryukyus (with arrowhead);Okinawa;Occupation of Korea
  • Korean War: UN Defensive; UN Offensive; CCF Intervention; First UN Counteroffensive; CCF Spring Offensive; UN Summer-Fall Offensive; Second Korean Winter; Korea, Summer-Fall 1952; Third Korean Winter; Korea, Summer 1953
  • Vietnam: Counteroffensive, Phase VII; Consolidation I; Consolidation II; Cease-Fire
  • Armed Forces Expeditions: Panama (with arrowhead)
  • Operation Iraqi Freedom: August 2005 to December 2006 Mosul and Baghdad
  • Operation Enduring Freedom: July 2009 to July 2010 Kandahar Province, Afghanistan; May 2012 to May 2013
  • Operation Freedom's Sentinel: January 2017 to October 2017 Laghman and Nangarhar Provinces, Afghanistan
  • War on Terrorism: Campaigns to be determined

Unit awards[edit]

Ribbon Award Streamer embroidered
U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force Presidential Unit Citation ribbon.svg Presidential Unit Citation (Army) LEYTE[4]
Valorous Unit Award ribbon.svg Valorous Unit Award NINEVEH PROVINCE AND BAGHDAD[4]
Meritorious Unit Commendation ribbon.svg Meritorious Unit Commendation (Army) AFGHANISTAN 2012-2013[4]
Philippines Presidential Unit Citation.png Philippine Presidential Unit Citation 17 OCTOBER 1944 TO 4 JULY 1945[4]
Korean Presidential Unit Citation.png Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation INCHON[4]
Korean Presidential Unit Citation.png Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation KOREA 1950-1953[4]
Korean Presidential Unit Citation.png Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation KOREA 1952-1953[4]
Korean Presidential Unit Citation.png Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation KOREA 1945-1948; 1953-1957[4]

United States Navy Presidential Unit Citation ribbon.svg A Company, 1-17 IN, received the Presidential Unit Citation (Navy) for actions in support of Operation Helmand Spider in Marjah during Operation Enduring Freedom 09-11.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "James Durrell Greene". Find A Grave. Retrieved 28 January 2019.
  2. ^ Blair, Clay (1997). The Forgotten War:. Times Books. p. 616. ISBN 0812916700.
  3. ^ a b "17th Infantry Regimental History - HONORS AND LINEAGE". 17th Infantry Regiment Association. Retrieved 6 June 2015. Cite web requires |website= (help)
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h "17th Infantry Regiment". U.S. Army Center of Military History. 13 June 2014. Retrieved 13 July 2012. Cite web requires |website= (help)

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Army Center of Military History.

External links[edit]