20th Rifle Division (Soviet Union)

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20th Rifle Division
ActiveI Formation: 1919–1921

II Formation: 1944–1946

III Formation: 1955–1957
CountrySoviet Union
BranchRed Army (1st and 2nd formations)
Soviet Army (3rd formation)
EngagementsRussian Civil War

World War II

DecorationsOrder of the Red Banner Order of the Red Banner (1st, 2nd and 3rd formations)
Order of Suvorov 2nd Class Order of Suvorov (2nd formation)
Battle honoursBaranovichi (2nd formation)
Lower Dnieper (3rd formation)
Adam Turchinsky

The 20th Rifle Division was an infantry division of the Soviet Red Army, formed three times. The first formation of the division lasted from 1919 to 1921 and fought during the Russian Civil War before its downsizing into a brigade. The brigade became the 3rd Rifle Division, the Caucasian Mountain Rifle Division, and the 20th Mountain Rifle Division during the interwar years. In 1944 the 20th became the 20th Rifle Division again. It was disbanded after the end of the war. The division briefly reformed between 1955 and 1957 from the 188th Rifle Division and was converted into a motor rifle division.

First Formation[edit]

The division was first formed as the Penza Infantry Division, which was formed by Order No. 9 of the 1st Army of the Eastern Front on 6 July 1918. Until September 15, 1918, was known as the 1st Infantry Division Penza (order to Division N 45). By order of the Field Staff of the RVSR 1477 N / A on March 16, 1919, it was named the 20th Rifle Division. By a separate order of the troops of the Caucasian Army 789 N / s from October 13, 1921, the division was disbanded and turned into the headquarters staff of the 6th separate Caucasian Rifle Brigade, in turn renamed November 29, 1921, as the 3rd separate Caucasian Rifle Brigade, and June 26, 1922 - as the 3rd Rifle Division (orders of the Separate Caucasus Army 1121 N / s, 934 / s).

By Transcaucasian Military District (ZakVO) Order No. 261/93 of 1 October 1931 the division was renamed the Caucasian Mountain Rifle Division, and May 21, 1936 - the 20th Caucasus Mountain Rifle Division.

It was awarded an Honorary Revolutionary Red Banner of the Central Executive Committee (1924), Order of the Red Banner. Was part of the 1st Army of the Eastern Front (July 1918 - October. 1919), 10th Army (Oct. 1919-Feb. 1920, March - April. 1920), under the operational control of the 1st Cavalry Army (Feb. - March 1920), 11th Army (May 1921 - OKA, from August. 1923 - CSA) (April 1920 - May 1935), in the Transcaucasian Military District (May 1935).

Second Formation[edit]

Formed during World War II on 21 April 1944 from the 20th Mountain Rifle Division.[1] Fought at Krasnodar, Novorossiysk, Crimea, and near Berlin.[2] With 28th Army of the 1st Ukrainian Front May 1945.

The division inherited the 20th Mountain Rifle Division's Order of the Red Banner, was awarded another Order of the Red Banner during the war, and received the honorific "Baranovichi". It was also awarded the Order of Suvorov 2nd class. Thus its final title was the 20th Baranovichi twice Red Banner Order of Suvorov Rifle Division. After the end of the war the division transferred to Lida with the 28th Army.[3] It was disbanded before 1 July 1946.[4]

Third Formation[edit]

After the war, the 20th Rifle Division was reformed in 1955 from the 188th Rifle Division.[5] It was disbanded on 17 April 1957 by being redesignated the 93rd Motor Rifle Division. (Feskov et al./Armies of the Bear) The division was based at Zaporizhia, Zaporizhia Oblast, under 25th Army Corps. The 93rd Motor Rifle Division was disbanded in 1959.[6]

It should not be confused with the 93rd Guards Motor Rifle Division.


  1. ^ "20-я Барановичская дважды Краснознаменная стрелковая дивизия" [20th Baranovichi twice Red Banner Rifle Division]. rkka.ru (in Russian). Retrieved 18 August 2016.
  2. ^ Poirer and Connor
  3. ^ Feskov et al 2013, p. 459
  4. ^ Feskov et al 2013, p. 451
  5. ^ Feskov et al 2013, p. 488
  6. ^ Holm, Michael. "93rd Motorised Rifle Division". www.ww2.dk. Retrieved 2016-03-16.
  • Feskov, V.I.; Golikov, V.I.; Kalashnikov, K.A.; Slugin, S.A. (2013). Вооруженные силы СССР после Второй Мировой войны: от Красной Армии к Советской [The Armed Forces of the USSR after World War II: From the Red Army to the Soviet: Part 1 Land Forces] (in Russian). Tomsk: Scientific and Technical Literature Publishing. ISBN 9785895035306.