Calgary Highlanders

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The Calgary Highlanders, an infantry regiment of the Land Force Reserve, has its headquarters at Mewata Armouries in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The regiment is a unit of Land Force Command, a component of the Canadian Forces Reserve, and comes under the command of 41 Canadian Brigade Group, itself part of Land Force Western Area (LFWA), one of four land force areas in Canada.

Timeline of the regiment

  • 1910: Raised as 103rd Regiment (Calgary Rifles).
  • 1914: Contributed men to several battalions of Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF), most notably 10th Battalion, whom they perpetuate.
  • 1920: 103rd reorganized into Calgary Regiment.
  • 1921: Calgary Regiment divided into six battalions; 1st Battalion became Calgary Highlanders, 2nd Battalion became Calgary Regiment (later King's Own Calgary Regiment).

Battle honours

The Calgary Highlanders were first awarded battle honours on 15 September 1929, for the actions of 10th Battalion, CEF.

Battle honours were not officially granted to 10th Battalion until 15 October 1929. However, while the Calgary Highlanders were awarded "Arras, 1917, '18", 10th Battalion's battle honour read only "Arras, 1917."

While the battle of Saint-Julien as a whole was considered worthy of a battle honour, to the disappointment of the Calgary Highlanders the counterattack at Kitcheners' Wood was not. As a result, a special oak-leaf shoulder badge was introduced. This badge, unique in the Canadian armed forces, was worn by only three regiments at its adoption in 1938, and is today worn by only two units, the Calgary Highlanders and the Canadian Scottish Regiment (Princess Mary's).

Battle honours awarded the Calgary Highlanders for World War I and World War II follow.

World War I

  • Ypres, 1915–17
  • Drocourt-Quéant, Hindenburg Line, Canal du Nord, Pursuit to Mons, France and Flanders, 1915–18
  • Gravenstafel, Saint-Julien, Festubert, 1915
  • Mount Sorrel, Somme, 1916
  • Thiepval, Ancre Heights, Arras, 1917, '18
  • Vimy, 1917
  • Arleux, Hill 70, Passchendaele, Amiens, Scarpe, 1918

World War II

  • Bourguebus Ridge, Fauborg de Vaucelles, Verrierres Ridge, Tilly-la-Campagne, Falaise, Falaise Road, Clair Tizon, Foret de la Londe, Dunkirk, 1944
  • Wyneghem, Antwerp-Turnhout Canal, The Scheldt, Woensdrecht, South Beveland, Walcheren Causeway, The Rhineland, The Reichswald, The Hochwald, Xanten, The Rhine, Groningen, Oldenburg, North-West Europe, 1944–45.

Victoria Cross

Two men of the regiment were awarded the Victoria Cross (VC) during World War I: Private Harry Brown (16 August 1917, Hill 80) and Acting Sergeant Arthur Knight (2 September 1918, Drocourt-Queant Line). Three others have also been nominated for the VC but received lesser medals: during World War I, Lance Corporal George William Allan, DCM, and Captain Charles Costigan, DSO, MC, both of 10th Battalion; and in World War II Sergeant Clarence "Ken" Crockett, DCM, of 1st Battalion, Calgary Highlanders.

Regimental badge

The regiment's cap badge (based on that of 10 Battalion, CEF) was approved in 1921. A St Andrew's Cross (not, as often wrongly thought, a Roman numeral X) has been added to the design. The crown is that of the reigning monarch; a Tudor crown was used from the inception of the badge until 1953, when Queen Elizabeth II was crowned. It was then changed to a St Edward's pattern. A beaver and maple leaves represent Canada, while thistle-bearing scrolls bearing thistles symbolise Scotland. This latter design is appropriate for a Highland regiment, particularly one from Calgary, which is named for a location in Scotland.

References