Military


1st Battalion, 123d Infantry

The 66th Brigade in Illinois consists of three Infantry Battalions and the Brigade Headquarters and Headquarters Company (HHC) in Decatur. All sources agree that two of these battalions are the 1st Battalion, 131st Infantry, Joliet; and 2nd Battalion, 130th Infantry, Urbana. Apparently the third battalion is the 1st Battalion, 178th Infantry, at Chicago. However, as of early 2002 the official homepage of the 66th Brigade stated that the third battalion was the 1st Battalion, 123d Infantry, Bloomington. However, this unit is only represented by Company B in Delavan, IL.

As of 1995, the 1st Battalion, 123d Infantry Regiment was reportedly assigned to the 34th Infantry Division.

The 123rd Illinois Infantry Regiment was part of the "Wilder Lightning Brigade" during the Civil War. The Regiment was organized at Mattoon, Ill, by Colonel James Monroe (then Major of the Seventh Illinois Infantry). Companies A, C, D, H, I and K being from Coles county; B from Cumberland, E from Clark, F and G from Clark and Crawford. It was initially assigned to the Army of the Ohio: September 1862 - November 1862, and then to the Army of the Cumberland: November 1862 - June 1865. The Regiment was mounted May 1863 - November 1864, and recruits transferred to the 61st Regiment during June of 1865.

During World War II the 123rd Infantry Regiment served in the Pacific Theater. After training in the California desert, the 123rd Infantry regiment of the 33rd Infantry Division made an interim stop in Hawaii. The 33rd Division's first combat task was at Morotai in New Guinea. Elements of the 33rd valiantly fought and secured Morotai before the landing on Luzon in February, 1945. When the 139 days of combat were over for the 33rd on Luzon, 339 of its men had been killed, 1274 wounded in action, 319 injured, and three listed as Missing in Action.



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