31 Combat Engineer Regiment (The Elgins) - History

Our History

On 14 September 1866 the 25th “Elgin Battalion of Infantry” was authorized to be formed from five existing independent marine, infantry and rifle companies which had previously been established on the following dates:

'No. 1 Company' (The 1st Volunteer Militia Rifle Company at St. Thomas, 17 July 1856),

'No. 2 Company' (Volunteer Marine Company at Port Stanley, 31 January 1862),

'No. 3 Company' (Volunteer Militia Company of Infantry at Vienna, 29 October 1862),

'No. 4 Company' (Tilsonburg Infantry Company, 13 July 1866), and

'No. 5 Company' (Aylmer Infantry Company, 8 June 1866)

The battalion was redesignated the “25th Elgin Regiment” on 8 May 1900. The Regiment was disbanded on 1 August 1903, but re-established the next year on 17 May 1904 and titled the “25th Regiment.”

In 1915 the Regiment answering Europe’s call to arms, having details placed on active service for local protection and augmenting the Canadian Expeditionary Force with volunteers for overseas service. Among providing soldiers to other locally raised battalions of the CEF, the Elgin Regiment was instrumental in the raising of the 91st Overseas Battalion, CEF. This unit was authorized on 22 December 1915 and sailed for England on 29 June 1916, its personnel were absorbed by the '12th, 35th, 36th, 37th, 38th and 39th Reserve Battalion'(s) on 15 July 1916 to provide reinforcements for the Canadian Corps in the field. Perpetuation of the 91st Battalion, CEF, is still carried by the Regiment today.

In 1920, as part of the general reorganization of the Militia, the Regiment was redesignated “The Elgin Regiment.”

On 24 May 1940, the regiment mobilized 'The Elgin Regiment, CASF', for over seas service in the Second World War. This unit was converted to armour and redesignated the '25th Armoured Regiment (The Elgin Regiment), CAC' on 26 January 1942. Later that year, on 29 September 1942, the unit embarked for Britain as part of the 3rd Armoured Brigade, 4th Canadian Armoured Division.

The '1st Canadian Tank Delivery Squadron' was formed from "B" Squadron, 25th Armoured Regiment (The Elgin Regiment) on 6 May 1943. This Squadron landed in Sicily on 16 July 1943, and in Italy on 14 September 1943.

The Regiment was converted and redesignated '25th Canadian Tank Delivery Regiment (The Elgin Regiment), CAC' on 15 September 1943, and on 21 October 1943 the 1st Canadian Tank Delivery Squadron was redesignated "A" Squadron, 25th Canadian Tank Delivery Regiment (The Elgin Regiment), CAC.

On 15 March 1944 it was redesignated '25th Armoured Delivery Regiment (The Elgin Regiment), CAC'. One squadron of the unit landed in Normandy on 8 June 1944, followed by Headquarters and other squadrons in July 1944. The detached squadron in Italy moved to North-West Europe in March 1945 to rejoin the Regiment. The overseas regiment was disbanded on 15 February 1946.

After their return to Canada in 1945-46 the Elgin Regiment returned to an infantry role. Later, in 1954, The Elgin Regiment returned to the Armoured Corps where it remained until 1997. On 14 August 1997, The Elgin Regiment (RCAC) was disbanded for the purpose of conversion to an engineer unit the same day, becoming 31 Combat Engineer Regiment (The Elgin's).

More history on 31 Combat Engineer Regiment (The Elgin's) can be found on the History and Heritage website.

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