171st Infantry Brigade
Blackhawk Outreach_Fall15_Brochure The 171st Infantry Brigade (Blackhawk) has a proud tradition of training Soldiers to fight and win America’s wars that began with its constitution and organization at Camp Grant, Illinois in September 1917. At that time the U.S. Army was in the midst of a massive buildup to support our allies overseas who were already engaged in three years of war. As a subordinate brigade to the 86th Division, the Blackhawks began immediately training Soldiers for service on the front lines of Europe. The Blackhawks trained over 115,000 Soldiers by the time it deployed to Europe in September 1918. The Blackhawks never saw combat in World War I as a complete unit. Instead they quickly contributed highly trained and professional Soldiers to the front line Divisions already engaged in combat. Before the brigade was able to move to the fight the Armistice was signed and the war was over. The 171st returned and deactivated at Camp Grant, Illinois in January of 1919.
In the early 1940s the United States once again found itself at war. The 171st was ordered into active service in December 1942 at Camp Howze, Texas. In September 1944, the Blackhawks relocated to Camp San Luis Obispo, California where it underwent amphibious training in preparation for deployment to the Pacific Theater. By December 1944 it became apparent to the U.S. Army that it needed as many available units in the European Theater as possible. The Blackhawks found themselves in France in March of 1945. In 34 days of combat the Blackhawks fought from Cologne, Germany on the Rhine to Salzburg, Austria in the shadow of Berchtesgaden. After the surrender of Germany in May of 1945 the Blackhawks were redeployed to Camp Gruber, Oklahoma where they once again began training for the Pacific Theater. They sailed from the United States on 19 August 1945 and arrived in Leyte, Philippine Islands on 09 September 1945 (seven days after the formal surrender of Japan). The Blackhawks deactivated at Leyte almost a year later, in December of 1946.
As the Cold War heated up the 171st Infantry Brigade was reactivated at Fort Wainwright, Alaska on 1 July 1963. The activation of the 171st at Fort Wainwright is responsible for the Brigade’s shoulder sleeve insignia and distinctive unit insignia. During it’s time in the cold, snow-covered northwest, the Brigade trained, and stood ready, to counter any aggression directed towards the United States. The Blackhawks maintained this mission until November of 1972 where it was deactivated again in a massive realignment of Army units across the country.
The 171st Infantry Brigade was reactivated at Fort Jackson, South Carolina in April 2007. Today the Blackhawks are continuing nearly 100 years of tradition – turning tens of thousands of civilians into the greatest Soldiers in the best army in the world. The honorable service of Army Soldiers in over two centuries and Blackhawks throughout the last century continues today in our effort to train and develop the finest Soldiers and Leaders for continued service in the defense of our great Nation.
Col. Howard C. Kirk IV
CSM Christopher J. Menton
|120th Adjutant General Battalion – Receives, processes, and begins the Soldier transformation process for over 45,000 Soldiers, from all components, arriving each year for Initial Entry Training (IET) at the US Army Training Center & Fort Jackson (USATC&FJ).|
|Special Troops Battalion – The largest and most diverse unit on Fort Jackson, serving multiple training and training support missions on Fort Jackson and all over the world.|
|Task Force Marshall (TFM) – Prepares Sailors for deployment to various theatres of operation. Furthermore, Task Force Marshall provides refresher training to Army Retiree Recalls and Inactive Ready Reserve Soldiers.|