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30th Rifle Division (First Formation)
Active October 1918 - 18 December 1942
Country Soviet Union
Branch Red Army
Decorations Order of Lenin
Order of the Red Banner

The 30th Rifle Division (First Formation) was a military formation of the USSR from 1918 to 1945. Its final full name was the 30th Rifle Irkutsk Order of Lenin, three Orders of the Red Banner, Order of the Red Banner of Labour Division of the name of the Supreme Soviet of the RSFSR. After being redesignated the 55th Guards Rifle Division in December 1942, the Second Formation of the division was recreated at Rossosh in April 1943.


Formed in October 1918 by the merger of the 3rd and 4th infantry divisions of the Ural as the 4th Ural Infantry Division, in November 1918 renamed the 30th Rifle Division. Two senior Soviet military leaders served with the division in its early years; Vasily Konstantinovich Blucher, later famous for his commands in the Far East, commanded the division from 22 September 1918 to 15 January 1919, and Konstantin Rokossovsky, later Marshal of the Soviet Union, commanded one of the division's regiments in 1919-1920. In 1939, based on 30th Rifle Division units, the 132nd Rifle Division and 176th Rifle Division were created. Subsequently reformed as the 30th Mountain Division under this name and entered the war. The division was renamed the 30th Rifle Division on 25 August 1941.

The division was part of the 'operational army' from c. 22 June 1941 по 18 December 1942. In the army c. 22 June 1941 to 18 December 1942.

On 22 June 1941, the division was stationed at the Soviet-Romanian border on the river Prut in the Whining (Calarasi, district national frontiers number 5). The division was part of the 35th Rifle Corps, 9th Army. On 24 June 1941 had entered the battle, was forced to retreat on 30 June 1941 she held abroad Vnishora - German - Petreshtipri, with a disorganized retreat lost a lot of equipment and personnel, on 05/07/1941 she held positions at the front Popovka, Lipovanka. 7 July 1941 года выведена в резерв, к 11 July 1941 года была численностью не более штатной численности одного полка. On 7 July 1941 the division was in reserve, to 11 July 1941, the number was no more than the authorized strength of one regiment.

On 6 August 1941, the division was transferred to the Separate Coastal Army, which was entrusted with the defense of Odessa, but before managing to link up with the Separate Coastal Army, the division was cut off, not connected to the main forces of the army, and was forced to withdraw to the Southern Bug River. Then the division was involved in defensive and offensive battles on the Rostov axis, held abroad by the river Mius, in January 1942 forced the Mius, in March 1942 participated in the attack on Taganrog. Since the second half of July 1942 with the fighting departed for the Caucasus. On 25 July 1942, the three days covered the crossing of the Don in the area of Azov, on the defensive on the Krasnodar area. 12 August 1942 years has been forced to finally leave Krasnodar. In August, defense holds in the Hot Key

Participated in Tuapse defensive operation. By the early 20's numbers in August 1942 covered the road through the Piatigorsky and Spinal passes. After a lull, which lasted until 23 September 1942, again involved in heavy defensive battles, by the end of October 1942 held the line in the river valley tricky, hiding out in the Spinal pass.

On 12 December 1942 the division was transformed into the 55th Guards Rifle Division.

The Second Formation of the 30th Rifle Division was recreated at Rossosh in April 1943. It fought at Rostov, Kiev, Zhitomir, and in the Carpathian Mountains. It was with 38th Army of the 4th Ukrainian Front in May 1945.[1]


  • Southern Front, 9th Army, the 35th Rifle Corps - on 22 June 1941.
  • Southern Front, Separate Coastal Army - on 6 August 1941,
  • Southern Front, 9th Army - on 1 October 1941.
  • Southern Front, 56th army - since January 1942.
  • Trans-Caucasian Front, the Black Sea Group of Forces, 56, Army - on 1 October 1942.


30th Mountain Division

  • 35th Mountain Rifle Regiment
  • 71st Mountain Rifle Regiment
  • 256th Mountain Rifle Regiment
  • 369th Mountain Rifle Regiment
  • 59th Artillery Regiment
  • 121st Howitzer Artillery Regiment
  • 147th Separate Antitank Battalion
  • 89th Cavalry Squadron
  • 101st Sapper Battalion
  • 115th Separate Battalion
  • 40th Division Artillery Park
  • 57th Medical-Sanitary Battalion
  • 66th Separate Company Chemical Protection
  • 407th Trucking Company
  • 80th Field Bakery
  • 94th Second Division Veterinary Hospital
  • 81st Field Postal Station
  • ?th Field Ticket Office of the State Bank

30th Infantry Division

  • 35th Infantry Regiment
  • 71st Infantry Regiment
  • 256th Infantry Regiment
  • 59th Light Artillery Regiment
  • 121st Howitzer Artillery Regiment (until 30 December 1941)
  • 147th separate antitank battalion (up to 19 January 1942)
  • 436th Anti-Aircraft Battery (287th Separate Anti-Aircraft Artillery Battalion)
  • 551st Mortar Division (from 27 November 1941 to 3 November 1942)
  • 89th Separate Reconnaissance Battalion
  • 101st Sapper Battalion
  • 115th Separate Battalion
  • 40th Division Artillery Park (until 6 April 1942)
  • 57th Medical-Sanitary Battalion
  • 66th Separate Company Chemical Protection
  • 407th Trucking company
  • 80th Field Bakery
  • 94th Second Division Veterinary Hospital
  • 81st Field Postal Station
  • 1721st (341st) Field Ticket Office of the State Bank

In March 1942, the division was temporarily subordinated to the 13th Infantry Brigade.


  • Sergey Galaktionov Gavrilovic (16 August 1939 - 25 August 1941) brigade commander to 5 June 1940 major general (shot "for negligence and inaction")
  • Mikhail D. Goncharov (25 August 1941 - 4 December 1941) major general
  • Sawa Kalistratovich Potekhin (5 December 1941 - 14 June 1942) colonel
  • Boris Nikitich Arshintsev (15 June 1942 - 18 December 1942) colonel

Hero of the Soviet Union

  • Senior Sergeant Gerasimos Evseyevich Kucheryavyi, Hero of the Soviet Union — Gunner 256th Infantry Regiment. Posthumously awarded the title 31 March 1943, for fighting in the Hot Key 11 November 1942. He was left alone to defend a high location and was surrounded by enemy soldiers. They offered to let him surrender. He allowed them to come close to him, a grenade exploded, killing four enemies.


  • 13 December 1920 — Received the name Irkutsk
  • 16 July 1921 — Named after the Central Executive Committee
  • December 1938 — Name changed to The Name of the Supreme Soviet of the RSFSR
  • ? - Revolutionary Red Banner
  • 18 April 1920 — Order of the Red Banner
  • 4 April 1921 — Order of Red Banner
  • 8 May 1921 — Order of the Red Banner of the USSR
  • 27 February 1934 — Order of Lenin
  • 10 December 1942 — converted into a Guards unit


  1. Source probably Poirer and Conner, Red Army order of battle. See List of infantry divisions of the Soviet Union 1917-1957.

Sources and bibliography

  • Кудрявцев, Ф. А. Иркутская гвардейская. Kudryavtsev, FA Irkutsk Guards. - 2 ed. — Иркутск: 1944. - Irkutsk: 1944. — 39 с. - 39.
  • Богданов, Л. Г. В пламени и славе . Bogdanov, LG in flames and glory . — 2 ed., Corr. and add. — Иркутск: Восточно-Сибирское книжное издательство, 1988. - Irkutsk: East Siberian Publishing House, 1988. — 381 pages
  • GK Puzhaev Blood and glory Mius. Таганрог: БАННЭРплюс, 2008. Taganrog: BANNERplus, 2008. - 385 p.; ISBN 5-7280-0041-X

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