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North-Western Army

21 October 1919

 
This is the NW Army after a reorganisation, almost at its peak. Like all orders of battle, this is only a snapshot of a certain moment and in this case a treacherous one as the army had grown so rapidly. It was soon to fall apart equally quickly, so many units had only a very brief existence. Units which are particularly uncertain are *marked with asterisks*.

The material is supplied by Reigo Rosenthal, who is pretty much the expert on this front of the war.

The number value in square brackets [X] is a value judgement by Reigo on the quality of the unit, from 1 to 5. (As a comparison 1 is the level of a fairly standard Soviet unit on this front. Only a very few Estonian units get 5.)

 

1st Corps

Corps Commander – Lt-Gen. Count A. P. Palen (Pahlen)
Chief of Staff – Col. Vidyakin

2nd Infantry Division

Division Commander – Maj-Gen. Yaroslavtsev
Chief of Staff – Col. Prokopovich

5th Ostrov Infantry Regiment – Col. Alekseev – 500 bayonets [3-4]
1st Battalion – Capt. Rentel’n
2nd Battalion – Staff-Capt. Baron Ungern-Shternberg
6th Talabsk Regiment – Maj-Gen. Permikin – 1,000 bayonets [4]
1st Battalion – Capt. Boyarintsev
2nd Battalion – *Capt. Domogatskiy*
3rd Battalion – Capt. Stavskiy
7th Urals Regiment – Col. Trusov– 450 bayonets [3]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion
8th Semenov Regiment – Col Likudi – 500 bayonets [3-4]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion

Engineer Company
Reconnaisance Detachment (probably horse)
Commandant Detachment
Convoy Detachment
Reserve Battalion – Lt-Col. Pokrovskiy (possibly in the rear)

2nd Separate Light Artillery Divizion – Lt-Col. Makarov
2nd Battery – 4 guns
Battery of the 1st Separate Howitzer Artillery Divizion – 2 howitzers

On 26 October a “Shock Group” was created, taking the 6th and 8th Regiments, and possibly 4 light guns (see bottom of the page).

By the middle of November the Division had the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Batteries of the 2nd Independent Light Artillery Divizion plus the 1st and 3rd Battery of the 1st Independent Howitzer Artillery Divizion. This probably arrived in late October.

In the second half of October the Division was supported by tanks (3 at a time) and sometimes the Swedish White Legion with them.

3rd Infantry Division

Division Commander – Maj-Gen. Vetrenko
Chief of Staff – Lt-Col. Kusakov

1st Brigade – Col. Ivanov
9th Volyn Infantry Regiment – Col. Khomyakov – 1,200 bayonets [3]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion
3rd Battalion
10th Krasnogorsk Infantry Regiment – Col. Bel’dyugin – 450 bayonets [3]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion
3rd Battalion
2nd Brigade – Col. Budzilovich
11th Vyatsk Infantry Regiment – Col. Bushman – 300 bayonets [1-2]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion
12th Temnitsk Infantry Regiment – Col. Danilov – 300 bayonets [3-4]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion

Engineer Company
Commandant Detachment
Convoy Detachment
Reserve Battalion (probably with the Reserve Regiment of the 1st Corps)

3rd Separate Light Artillery Divizion
2nd Battery – 4 guns
1st Independent Horse Battery – 4 guns
1st Battery,1st Independent Howitzer Artillery Divizion – 2 howitzers

The 1st Battery of the 3rd Separate Light Artillery Divizion arrived at the end of October. The howitzers left in mid-October.

The Gatchina Jaeger Regiment started to form at this time in recently captured Gatchina. It is possible that this was using the Reserve Battalion as a cadre.

At this time, and for a short while afterwards the division was supported by an improvised armoured train made in Gatchina. It probably had artillery pieces.

5th Infantry Division

Division Commander – Lt-Col. Dydorov
Chief of Staff – Col. Sobolevskiy

17th Libau Infantry Regiment – 460 men [4]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion
3rd Battalion
18th Rizhsk Infantry Regiment – 460 men [3]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion
19th Poltava Infantry Regiment – 545 men [3-4]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion
Rifle Divizion – 134 men [3-4]
3 Squadrons

24th Pechorsk Infantry Regiment – Col. Salamanov – 600 bayonets [1]

Baltic Regiment – Col. von Veis (Weiss) [3-4]
3rd Company – 85 bayonets
Two MG platoons
Squadron – 35 men

Reconnaisance Detachment – 5 men
Engineer Company – 140 men
Commandant Detachment – 60 men
Training Machine Gun Company – 33 men
Signals Detachment – 53 men
Reserve Battalion

5th Independent Light Artillery Divizion
1st Battery – 4 guns
2nd Battery – 2 guns
2nd Battery,1st Independent Howitzer Artillery Divizion – 2 howitzers

The 17th, 18th and 19th Regiments were formerly the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Prince Lieven Regiments, which had started out in Latvia (Libau is Liepaja in German).

The 20th Chudskoy Rgt was operating with the 1st Division.

The 24th Infantry Regiment was newly formed and officially part of the 6th Division but at this time operating under this Division.

The Baltic Regiment was a unit of the Estonian Army formed around Estonians of German extraction, but the other ranks of the 3rd company were Russians. A light battery of two guns soon arrived, but immediately went to the Shock Group. (1st and 2nd Companies remained in the rear at this time.)

The numbers cited by Volkov appear to be men, not bayonets. A figure of 1,350 bayonets is also given.

By the end of the month there were 4 German howitzers in the howitzer battery.

Attached to 1st Corps

Horse-Jaeger Regiment – Col. Benkendorf – 500 sabres and bayonets [3-4]
4 squadrons

Engineer Company of the 1st Corps
Reserve Artillery Divizion of the 1st Corps

3rd Aviation Detachment – 2 Nieuport-24bis

This was Prince Lieven’s former aviation detachment

Commandant Detachment of the Staff of the 1st Corps
*Escort of the Staff of the 1st Corps*
Independent Bicycle Battalion (probably messengers)

Armored Car Battery – 2 cars

There was a third car, but it was probably not operational at this time. The cars mostly were operating with the 2nd and 3rd Divisions.

Independent Tank Company – 6 Mark V tanks
First Aid
White Soldier
Captain Cromie
Liberation
Brown Bear
Retribution 
Tank Shock Battalion – 350 bayonets [3]
Swedish White Legion

The tanks and their support (which includes the Swedes) were briefly subordinate to 1st Corps, but soon afterwards transferred to direct Army command. Only three tanks ever operated at the front at any one time.
 

2nd Corps

Corps Commander – Lt-Gen. E. K. Arsen’ev
Chief of Staff – Col. A. Kushelevski

4th Infantry Division

Division Commander – Lt.Gen. Prince A. Dolgorukov

13th Narva Infantry Regiment – Col. Grigor’ev – 800 bayonets [1-2]
14th Litovsk Infantry Regiment – Lt-Col. Vasil’ev – 350 bayonets [1-2]
15th Voznesensk Infantry Regiment – Col. Natashin –750 bayonets [1-2]
16th Velikaya-Ostrov Infantry Regiment – Lt-Col. Parutskiy – 1,000 bayonets[1-2]

*Shock Battalion of the 4th Division*

4th Independent Light Artillery Divizion
1st Battery – 2 guns
2nd Battery – 2 guns
2nd Independent Horse Battery – 2 guns
2nd Independent Howitzer Artillery Divizion – 4 guns

Engineer Company
Commandant Detachment
Escort Detachment
Reserve Battalion

This division had been recently heavily reinforced with new recruits. The bulk was sent to join 1st Corps on 26 October, leaving only the 13th and 14th Regiments in the Luga area (called the Grigor’ev Group) under direct Army command.

6th Infantry Division

Division Commander – Maj-Gen. Ezhevskiy

21st General Denikin Infantry Regiment – 800 bayonets [1-2]
22nd Pskov Infantry Regiment – 800 bayonets [1-2]
23rd Kachanovskiy Infantry Regiment – Col. Tsibulskiy – 180 bayonets [1-2]

6th Independent Light Artillery Divizion – 8 guns

*Engineer Company*
*Commandant Detachment*
*Escort Detachment*
*Reserve Battalion*

This was previously the Independent Brigade. The 23rd Regiment had been formed only in August (Volkov has it as the Kachanovskiy Battalion), and originally was called the 2nd Rifle Regiment. The 24th Pechorsk Infantry Regiment was technically in the Division, but attached to 1st Corps.

Attached to 2nd Corps

Horse Regiment – Josif Bulak-Balakhovich – 100 sabres, 500 bayonets [3]
4 squadrons

This was formerly the Bulak-Balakhovich Horse Regiment, commanded now by Stanisław’s brother. This went with the 4th Regiment to 1st Corps.

Reserve Regiment of the 2nd Corps – 850 bayonets

This only arrived at the front on 26 October.

Engineer Company of the 2nd Corps
Commandant Detachment of the Staff of the 2nd Corps
*Escort of the Staff of the 2nd Corps*
Reserve Artillery Divizion of the 2nd Corps
 

Not in Corps

1st Infantry Division

Division Commander –Lt-Gen. Dzerozhinskiy
Chief of Staff – Col. Lotov

1st St George Regiment – Col. Mikosha – 1,000 bayonets [2-3]
1st Battalion
2nd Battalion
3rd Battalion
2nd Revel' Infantry Regiment – Maj-Gen. Gennings – 700 bayonets [2-3]
*1st Battalion*
*2nd Battalion*
3rd Kolyvan Infantry Regiment – Col. Badendyk – 650 bayonets [2-3]
*1st Battalion*
*2nd Battalion*
4th Gdov Infantry Regiment – Col. Minikh – 900 bayonets [2-3]
*1st Battalion*
*2nd Battalion*
*3rd Battalion*

20th Chudskoy Rgt – Col. Smolin – 350 bayonets [2-3]

1st Independent Light Artillery Divizion – Col. Smirnov – 4 guns
Howitzer Battery – 2 guns

Engineer Company
Commandant Detachment
Independent Border Guard Battalion – Col. Rumkevich
1st March Battalion – Col. Rossinskiy
Reserve Battalion – 900 bayonets
*Convoy Detachment*

There is no information about the Border Guard or March Battalions in combat.

Operationally the 20th Chudskoy Regiment was subordinated to the 1st Division.

Kolyvan and Revel’ are Tallinn in Russian and German respectively. Chudskoye is Lake Peipus.

Other not in Divisions

Armoured Trains
Admiral Kolchak
Admiral Essen
Talabchanin
Pskovityanin

The trains each had a landing party of around 100 bayonets, one of which was the Swedish White Legion. These were at the time attached to 1st Corps as a combined Divizion but with the Swedes separately. The trains operated with 2nd Corps.

Four Renault tanks

Arrived at about this time, lent by the French (who took them from the Finnish Army) Estonians, although two were immediately sent to the rear as broken.

French-Russian Legion

*Soon merged into the 4th Division.*

Engineer/Signals Company by the Army Staff
Balloon Divizion
*Shuvalov's Shock Battalion*

Artillery under direct Army command – 2 heavy guns, 4 light guns
*1st Reserve Artillery Divizion*
*2nd Reserve Artillery Divizion*
Independent Heavy Field Artillery Divizion – all guns out of commission

It is possible that the guns noted here were those of the armoured trains.

1st Aviation Detachment – R.E.8 planes; probably not combat capable
2nd Aviation Detachment – R.E.8 planes; probably not combat capable

Trawler "Kitoboi" – 2 guns

Rear Area Guards
Militia for Guarding Traffic Roads
Military Guard of the Railroads of the North-Western Army
Guard Company of the Army Staff

Iamburg Rifle Militia

Possibly already being disbanded   
 
 

There was another reorganisation on 26 October to create:

Shock Group

6th Talabsk Infantry Regiment
8th Semenov Infantry Regiment
Horse Regiment
Horse-Jaeger Regiment
2nd Separate Light Artillery Divizion – up to 4 light guns
2 Renault tanks

Battery of the Baltic Regiment – temporarily
1st Battery of the 5th Independent Light Artillery Divizion – temporarily



And from 27 to 29 October there was another group, which was then folded into the Shock Group above:

Lieutenant-General Rodzianko's Detachment

Tank Shock Battalion
Lieutenant-General Rodzianko's personal sotnia (1st Tank Shock Sotnia)
Landing Company of the Armored Trains Divizion
*Detachment from 3rd Aviation Detachment*
A detachment of men composed from combat capable element of reserve units

Altogether about 800 bayonets
 
 
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