S A Armour Corps


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Today in History

A look at some important dates for the South African Armour Corps.

There are many other dates of equal importance to many members and veterans of the SA Armoured Corps. All contributions to improve and expand the list will be appreciated.
23 March 1854 - The establishment of the Royal D'urban Rangers
19 September 1856 - The establishment of Prince Alfred's Guard (PAG). Recently converted to an Infantry regiment
1888 - The establishment of the Natal Mounted Rifles (NMR)  amalgamation of the Royal D'urban Rangers, the Victoria Mounted Rifles, the Durban Mounted Rifles and other smaller units
21 September 1899 - The establishment of the Imperial Light Horse (ILH), later the Light Horse Regiment (LHR)
1 July 1913 - The establishment of Pretoria Regiment (PR) as the XIIth Infantry Battalion.
14 July 1916 - The Battle of Delville Wood
21 February 1917 - The sinking of the SS Mendi
18 September 1918 - The Battle of Square Hill
11 November 1918 - At approximately 05:00 on Monday 11 November 1918, the Armistice was signed in a railway carriage of Marshall Foch’s special train located in the forest at Rethondes in France on the western front. At 11:00 on this Monday 11 November 1918, the roar of guns ceased and peace and silence finally descended on the western front, ending the First World War. It is estimated that close to 9,5 million soldiers, sailors and airmen of all sides died in the Great War.
1 May 1933 - The establishment of Special Service Battalion (SSB)
1 April 1934 - The establishment of Regiment President Steyn as an Infantry Regiment, later converted to a Machine Gun Battalion.
1935 - The establishment of Die Middellandse Regiment in Graaff Reinett, later renamed Regiment Groot Karoo and converted to Infantry
21 September 1939 - The establishment of the Pretoria Highlanders (PH). During World War II the regiment, as part of 7 South African Infantry Brigade, took part in "Operation Rose", the invasion of Madagascar by South African forces in June 1942. As far as is known, this is the first (and only) amphibious operation in which South African troops ever participated. Amalgamated with Pretoria Regiment
31 January 1940 - The formation of No 1 Armoured Car Company was authorised and the Black Beret was adopted as the headdress
1 May 1940 - The establishment of the SA Tank Corps
10 June 1942 - The Battle of Celeno
2 July 1942 - The First Battle of El ’Alamein
23 October 1942 - The Second Battle of El Alamein
1 November 1942 - The first steps taken to constitute the South African Armoured Corps as a unit of the Active Citizen Force
20 April 1944 - The 6th SA Armoured Division enters Italy at the port of Taranto (including Armour Regiments such as Natal Mounted Rifles, Pretoria Regiment, Prince Alfred's Guard and Special Service Battalion. The Imperial Light Horse, later the Light Horse Regiment took part as an Infantry Battalion)
1 May 1946 - Special Service Battalion becomes (South African Armoured Corps Armour) 1SSB (1 Special Service Battalion who wore the Protea Badge Silver) and (South African Armour Corps Infantry) 2SSB (2 Special Service Battalion who wore the Protea Badge Bronze.).
18 October 1946 - The establishment of the South African Armoured Corps (SAAC) as a unit of the Permanent Force. Government Gazette No 3716 dated 18 October 1946.
26 January 1951 - The Closure of South African Armoured Corps Infantry and 2 Special Service Battalion (2SSB) becomes SAI (South African Infantry Corps)
1 July 1952 - The establishment of Regiment Oranjerivier (ROR) as Regiment North West Cape in Upington. Later the name was changed to Regiment Hertzog and in 1960 to Regiment Oranjerivier
1 September 1953 - The establishment of 1 SSB Training Regiment
10 April 1954 - The establishment of Regiment Mooirivier (RMR) as 2 Antitank Regiment SAA/ACF. In 1954 the regiment was converted to an Armoured Car regiment and renamed Regiment Hendrik Potgieter. In 1959 the regiment was renamed Regiment Mooirivier
1 April 1962 - The establishment of 2 Armoured Car Regiment (with D Squadron at Walvis Bay). In 1967, 2 Armoured Car Regiment merged with 1 SSB
1 October 1962 - The establishment of C Squadron, 2 Armoured Car Regiment at Zeerust as a military base
1 April 1966 - The establishment of the School of Armour
1 October 1973 - The establishment of 2 Special Service Battalion as an Armour Unit
23 March 1988 - The Battle of Cuito Cuanavale
31 December 1992 - The closure of 2 Special Service Battalion Zeerust as an Armoured Unit
30 April 1993 - The establishment of the SA Armour Association
13 September 1996 - The inauguration of the SA Armour Museum by the Chief of the Army, Lt Gen Reg Otto
1 April 1999 - The establishment of 1 SA Tank Regiment
1 April 1999 - The establishment of the SA Army Armour Formation
2 September 1999 - The opening of Hull Down at the SA Armour Museum by Brig Gen Fido Smit, Hon Col of 1 SSB
30 March 2001 - Opening of Lesakeng at the SA Armour Museum by Hon Col Frik Jankowitz
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