Special Troops Basttalion
1st Brigade Combat Team
Organizational Legacy
"Strength Through Courage"

  "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon"  
US Military Marching Song
Composed by George A. Norton - 1917
John Ford Film Released by RKO Pictures

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Distinctive Unit Insignia


The 1st Cavalry Division, a major subordinate command of the US Third Mobile Armored Corps, is a 19,000 soldier, heavy armored division stationed at Ft. Hood, TX. As one of the two "on-call" heavy contingency force divisions of the Army, the First Team has an on-order mission to deploy by sea, air or land to any part of the world on a short notice. The following narratives, divided in timeline eras of major operational missions, describes the threat environment, tactical conditions, evolution of equipment technology and the strategic methodology employed by one of its command units, the 1st Brigade Combat Team and its Subordinate Units, to contribute to the successful missions enhancement of the warring organization of the 1st Cavalry Division and the honors they achieved are summarized in the chapters that follow.


On order, the "Centurion" Battalion prepares and executes Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surviellance and Reconnaisse (C4ISR) assets of combat support operations to provide Special Response Teams (SRT) for urban strike capabilities and Situational Awareness (SA) to integrate Command and Control (C2) to enable full spectrum operations worldwide for the 1st Brigade Combat Team (1BCT). On order redeploys to home station to prepare for future offensive operations.Operational Summary

On 12 July 2005, the 1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion (BSTB) was activated in response to the Modularity Plan employing Units of Action (UA) / Units of Employment (UE) concept of fielding "The Objective Force" vision of of the US Army.

On 17 October 2005, Headquarters Company, 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, was reorganized and redesignated as the Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team. (The Headquarters, 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division remained as structured, but hereafter maintained a separate lineage)

In a short one year time span, the organic companies of the Battalion were composed of five separate, functional organizations.

The creation and designation of this new Special Troops Battalion, along with the transfer and reorganization of the subordinate elements created an organization that had earned and accrued a significant battle and campaign history along with an impressive lineage.

The 20th Engineer Battalion traces its origins to 15 August 1917, when the War Department issued General Order Number 108 forming the 20th Engineer Regiment. The Battalion has earned battle streamers in WWI, WWII, Vietnam, Desert Shield/Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom II.

Prior to its deactivation, the 312th MI Battalion was the most decorated MI Battalion in the US Army. The 312th Military Intelligence Battalion began its history as the 23rd Signal Construction Battalion at Camp Pickett, in Virginia on January 1st, 1944. The Battalion earned battle streamers in WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Shield/Storm, and Operation Iraqi Freedom II.

Prior to its deactivation, the 13th Signal battalion traced its origins to 01 July 1916 when it was constituted in the Regular Army as a Signal Corps Battalion. On 14 July 1917 the 13th Signal battalion was subsequently organized at Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia, as the 7th Field Battalion, Signal Corps.On 19 September 1932, following several changes in assignments, the 13th Signal Battalion was reconstituted in the Regular Army and consolidated with the 1st Signal Troop. The consolidated unit was designated as 1st Signal Troop, an element of the 1st Cavalry Division. Prior to deactivation, the Battalion Had participated in Operation Iraqi Freedom II.

Armed with the composite mixture of lineages and campaign histories of the subordinate units, the Center of Military History conferred the Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division with the lineage and honors of the original Headquarters, 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division) which originated as the Headquarters, 1st Cavalry Brigade that was constituted in the Regular Army on 29 August 1917.

In 2010, the organization of the Speciaql Troops Battalion was modified by the formation of an Engineering Sapper, "C" Company, was organized using elements of the Engineer Companies from the 2/5 and 2/8 Cavalry Regiments, that became available following the redeployment of the Ironhorse Brigade from Operation Iraqi Freedom 09-10.

As of today, the Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, stands ready to lead the way to any contingency area world-wide to accomplish any mission that the future might bring. The Special Troiops Battalion, 1st Brigade represented by the following active subordinate units, is functionally organized and are diligently training and preparing to answer the call of duty.

Ssubordinate elements of the 1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion are functionally organized into the following units:

  • "HHC" Special Troops Battalion
    • Military Police Platoon
    • Support Platoon
    • CBRN Reconnaissance Platoon
  • "A" Company - Military Intelligence
    • UAV Platoon
  • "B" Company - Signal Communications
  • "C" Company - Engineering

    Today, the soldiers of the Special Troops Battalion, 1st (IRONHORSE) Brigade Combat Team stand ready to answer an on-order mission to deploy by sea, air or land to any part of the world on short notice and once engaged with the threat; to destroy, neutralize, or suppress the enemy.

    The following folio of material highlights the many subsequent historical and critical missions performed by members of the Special Troops Battalion, 1st Combat Brigade Team - whose actions, operations and the many critical issues resolved over its 94+ year history to meet the changing threat and their achieved honors are summarized in the following sections:

    Table of Contents

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    Copyright © 1996, Cavalry Outpost Publications ® and Trooper Wm. H. Boudreau, "F" Troop, 8th Cavalry Regiment (1946 - 1947). All rights to this body of work are reserved and are not in the public domain, or as noted in the bibliography. Reproduction, or transfer by electronic means, of the History of the 1st Cavalry Division, the subordinate units or any internal element, is not permitted without prior authorization. Readers are encouraged to link to any of the pages of this Web site, provided that proper acknowledgment attributing to the source of the data is made. The information or content of the material contained herein is subject to change without notice.

    Revised 06 Apr '12 SpellChecked