The State of South Dakota was originally a part of the Dakota Territory organized in 1861. It became a State in 1889. Territorial Governor Jayne in 1862 ordered the formation of six companies of militia, composed of cavalry and infantry. By September of 1862, Companies A and B, First Dakota Cavalry were federalized and served until November, 1865. These units were attached to General Sully, commander of the Upper Missouri, and covered an area from Sioux City, Iowa up the Missouri River into present-day Montana. The First Dakota Cavalry served General Sully in protecting the settlers from the Indians during the Civil War. It was involved in the Battle of Killdeer Mountain and the Battle of the Badlands, both of which were in present-day North Dakota.
Spanish American War & Mexican Border Periods (1898-1917)
In April, 1898 the First Infantry Regiment was federalized and left South Dakota for the Philippines in May, 1898, and returned to South Dakota in October,1899, when they were welcomed home by President McKinley at Aberdeen, South Dakota. They had served 129 days in combat in the Philippines under General Arthur MacArthur, the Division Commander.
South Dakota also furnished five troops of cavalry in 1898, which were assigned to the 3rd U.S. Volunteer Cavalry Regiment, known as "Grigsbys Cowboys". They went to Camp Chickmaunga, Georgia, and served out their term there and were discharged in December of 1898.
On July 15, 1916, the South Dakota Fourth Infantry Regiment mustered into service for duty along the Mexican Border. They left from Camp Hagman near Redfield, South Dakota on July 31, 1916, for San Benito, Texas. Along with the First Oklahoma Infantry, they served until March 3, 1917.
The First Louisiana Infantry and the 26th U.S. Infantry were assigned to the First Separate Brigade, commanded by Colonel Robert L. Bullard, U.S. Army. The South Dakota Troops spent seven months on the border, training and watching. They were mustered out at Fort Cook, Nebraska, on March 3, 1917.
World War I (1917-1919)
On March 25, 1917, the Third Battalion of the Fourth South Dakota Infantry was mobilized to guard bridges on the Missouri and the James Rivers. On July 15, 1917, both the South Dakota Fourth Infantry Regiment and the First Cavalry Regiment were mobilized. The units from South Dakota were reorganized into other types of units and returned from France in 1919 and were demobilized on May 23, 1919.
The South Dakota units ended up in the 40th, 41st, 32nd, 34th, and the 88th Divisions, being reorganized into Artillery, Supply Trains, Machine Gun Battalions or replacements for other units. The 147th Artillery Regiment participated in the following battles in France. Taul-Boueq, Center Sector, Champagne-Marne, Aiene-Marne, Oisne-Marne, Avscourt, and Meuse-Argonne, from June 12, 1918, through November 11, 1918. They were demobilized at Camp Dodge, Iowa on May 23, 1919.
World War II (1940-1945)
Pacific Theater of Operations
On November 25, 1940, units of the South Dakota Army National Guard were called up for a one year training period. The 147th Field Artillery Regiment was the first to go on active duty at Camp Ord, California. After training at Camp Ord they embarked on November 22,1941, for duty in the Philippine Islands. They departed Pearl harbor, Hawaii, on November 30, 1941, and were west of Pearl Harbor on to December 7, 1941, then were diverted Brisbane, Australia. They were in Australia until 1943 and after some reorganizations, they began the long battle of retaking the various islands of the Pacific and were part of the occupation of Japan. The 147th was inactivated in January of 1946.
European Theater of Operations
On February 10, 1941, the 109th Engineer Regiment, 109th Quartermaster Regiment, and the 34th Signal Company, were called into active service, and assembled with the 34th Division at Camp Claiborne, Louisiana. The 34th Division which contained the South Dakota units set sail for Ireland on January 14, 1942. The 1st Battalion, 109th Quartermaster and Company A, 109th Engineers were part of this movement, and the first soldier to disembark in Ireland, was a soldier from Pierre named Baer Schliussmann. The 34th Division landed in Oran, North Africa in January, 1943. They participated in the North Africa Campaign, the Italian Campaign and the occupation of Northern Italy after May of 1945.
The other reorganized units went to Corsica, France and Germany. The South Dakota troops were discharged in 1945 and 1946 as individuals, not units.
The Korean War (1950-1952)
In July 1950 South Dakota National Guard units were mobilized with the 196th Regimental Combat Team going to Alaska. The Combat Team was made up of three battalions of infantry; the 147th Field Artillery Battalion, the 200th Engineer Company, and a medical detachment. Learn more about the 196th Regimental Combat Team, logon to http://www.196rct.org.
The 109th Engineer Battalion with units in Rapid City, Sturgis, Hot Springs and Lead was mobilized on September 3, 1950 and trained at their mobilization station, Ft. Bragg, NC for 8 months prior to being sent to West Germany. During their one year tour in Germany they controlled bridging operations over the Rhine River. They also had TDY to France for 2 months building roads for the French military.
All South Dakota soldiers were returned home off active duty in 1952.
Berlin Crisis (1961-1962)
East-West tensions escalated in June 1948 after the Soviets set into motion a plan to get the Allies to relinquish their rights and commitments in Berlin. Those tensions continued to build throughout the 1950's. The face off of Russian and American tanks caused a war scare in Washington and a retreat was ordered on 27 October 1961 and avoided a possible nuclear war between the East and the West. The new negotiations, the wall, and the Allies decision to back off, relieved East-West tensions.
The mounting East-West tensions over the situation in Berlin during August and September 1961 prompted increased military readiness. South Dakota National Guard units were called into active federal service on 1 October 1961.
The 740th and 741st Transportation Company from Milbank and Clear Lake reported to Fort Carson, Colorado. The 211th Engineer Company from Lemmon reported to Fort Lewis, Washington. The 1st Battalion 147th Field Artillery (HQ & HQ Battery, Battery A, B, C, and Svc) from Sioux Falls, Madison, Flandreau and Canton reported to Fort Sill, Oklahoma. The 115th Signal Company Wire Platoon from Yankton and Vermillion reported to Fort Riley, Kansas. The 214th Engineer Company from Mobridge reported to Fort Polk, Louisiana and the 730th Medical Company to Fort Riley, Kansas. All units were released from active duty between 6 August 1962 and 12 August 1962.
South Dakota National Guard did not mobilize or deploy units to Vietnam. However, many returning Vietnam Veterans over the following years joined various National Guard units to share their experiences and skills. We salute those veterans for their service as well by establishing a Vietnam War display thanking them for their service and remembering those who were KIA or MIA.
Desert Storm (1990-1991)
In 1990, the South Dakota National Guard mobilized 6 units for duty in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq. South Dakota Units participating were the 109th Engineer Group, 730th Medical Company, 1742nd Transportation Company, 740th Transportation Company, 747th Highway Regulating Team, and 57th Movement Control Team.
Bosnian Peace Keeping Mission (1995-Present)
In December, 1995, the 57th Movement Control Team was again activated for service overseas. The 57th had received numerous awards and citations for its efforts in the Gulf War and was again called upon for duty. The unit, Commanded by Captain Andy Gerlach, worked with V Corps to transport units from Germany and the United States into the Bosnian Theater of Operations. The 57th was instrumental in moving the largest land deployment in Europe since World War II.
Operation Joint Endeavor (1996-1997)
The 129th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment was activated and deployed to Bosnia-Herzegovina from January 1997 - August 1997 as part of Operations Joint Guard, a NATO Peacekeeping Mission in the Balkans.
SFOR 11 - KFOR 5b (2003-2004)
As a continued support of the NATO Peacekeeping missions, the 1085th Medical Company (Air Ambulance) deployed to Bosnia and Kosovo to provide much needed medical services and medical evacuation operations.
War on Terrorism (2003 - Present)
Following the attack on the United States by terrorists on September 11, 2001, this nation began to prepare and implement operations against world terrorism. The President of the United States set in motion the largest call up of military forces since World War II. The South Dakota National Guard mobilized and deployed over 3500 citizen soldiers to support this great nation. Those operations became known as: Operation Noble Eagle, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and Operation Enduring Freedom.
Operation Noble Eagle (2003-2004)
The 665th Maintenance Company mobilized in South Dakota to support security operations at Ellsworth Air Force Base near Rapid City, and Joe Foss Field near Sioux Falls, home of the South Dakota Air National Guard. Detachment 3, 665th Maintenance Company conducted similar operations at Fort Sill, Oklahoma and the National Training Center.
Operation Iraqi Freedom 1 (2003-2004)
The beginning phases of the war on terrorism, 13 South Dakota National Guard units mobilized and deployed to various locations. Their time on active duty varied from six months to eighteen months. Some of the units were involved in the initial push from Kuwait into Iraq and Baghdad. Their missions included transporting supplies, ammunition, equipment, building bridges, airport and base camp construction and security. Units who deployed to Kuwait and Iraq were: 727th, 740th, and 1742nd Transportation Companies, 109th Engineer Battalion, Company B, 109th Medical Battalion, 200th and 842nd Engineer Companies, and the 114th Civil Engineering Squadron (SD Air National Guard). The units not deployed overseas provided security and training of troops at stateside locations were: 235th Military Police Company, Ft. Carson, CO; 129th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment, Fort Riley, KS; 1st Battalion, 147th Field Artillery, Fort Sill, OK; Battery C, 2nd/147th Field Artillery, Ft. Campbell, KY; 196th Regional Training Institute, Fort Sill, OK / Fort Bragg, NC.
Operation Iraqi Freedom 2 (2003-2005)
Four South Dakota National Guard units were mobilized to support security, patrolling, firefighting, and intelligence missions on the second phase of call ups. All the units were deployed to Iraq. They were: 2nd Battalion, 147th Field Artillery, 153rd Engineer Battalion, 216th Engineer Detachment (Firefighters) and 147th Field Artillery Brigade (3 Soldiers Intelligence).
Operation Enduring Freedom (2002 - 2005)
The 155th Engineer Detachment was mobilized early in the build up stages for the war in Iraq. Their mission supported the building of the base camp and other projects for the units arriving in Kuwait. In 2004, HHC, 109th Engineer Group was mobilized to Afghanistan to provide command and control for engineer and security forces.
Operation Iraqi Freedom 3 (2004 - Present)
Detachment 3, Company F, 238th Aviation and Detachment 3, Company A, 249th Aviation were mobilized to Iraq for air support missions; transporting personnel and supplies to designated locations.
Operation Iraqi Freedom 4 (2005 - Present)
1st Battalion, 147th Field Artillery was mobilized to Iraqi to support U. S. Forces with security operations.