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157th Infantry Brigade (Training Support)
"Spartan Brigade"

The 157th Infantry Brigade (Training Support) is a training support brigade assigned to Division East, First US Army. The Brigade's mission is to provide training assistance, support, and evaluation to priority Reserve Component units and all other units within capabilities. It also synchronizes training support within area of responsibility in order to enhance individual and unit readiness to meet directed mobilization and/or wartime requirements. On order, the Brigade activates or augments Mobilization Assistance Teams to assist installation commanders in post-mobilization training and validation of mobilized units for deployment. Also, on order, the Brigade could deploy a Defense Coordinating Officer and/or a Defense Coordinating Element to coordinate Military Support to Civilian Authorities during federal disaster response operations.

The 157th Infantry Brigade was first constituted on 5 August 1917 in the National Army as Headquarters, 157th Infantry Brigade, and assigned to the 79th Division. It was organized on 25 August 1917 at Camp Meade, Maryland. The 79th Division, the "Liberty Division (and later also known as the "Lorraine Division") was a National Army division established on 5 August 1917 by the War Department to be formed at Camp Meade, Maryland. Draftees were from Pennsylvania and Maryland. The Division was commanded by Major General Joseph E. Kuhn. Movement overseas commenced on 6 July 1918 and was completed by 3 August 1918. The Division's primary units included the 157th Infantry Brigade, consisting of the 313th Infantry Regiment, 314th Infantry Regiment, and 311th Machine Gun Battalion.

The 157th Infantry Brigade was commanded by Brigadier General William J. Nicholson. One the Army's most expert calvary officers, General Nicholson was seldom seen off his horse at Camp Meade. Shrouded in secrecy, the Brigade and the rest of the 79th Division left from Hoboken, New Jersey in July 1918 on the USS Leviathan, a speedy ex-German liner. The USS Leviathan arrived at Brest, France on the morning of 15 July 1918. The Brigade trained for 2 months at Champ Litte behind the French lines. On 26 September 1918, the soldiers of the Brigade "went over the top" in the Meuse-Argonne offensive. In a period of heartbreaking losses, the men struggled through 9 kilometers of barbed wire and pockmarked earth. They destroyed German defenses that were said to be impregnable. That night they were on the outskirts of Montfaucon, headquarters of the enemy command. The Brigade's 313th Infantry Regiment fought until the end of the war on 11 November 1918. General John J. Pershing commended the men of the 79th Division, and especially the 313th Infantry Regiment whose forces penetrated deeper into enemy territory then any other outfit. The 157th Infantry Brigade was credited with participation in 2 campaigns during World War I: Meuse-Argonne and Lorraine 1918. After the end of the Great War, the Brigade was demobilized on 7 June 1919 at Camp Dix, New Jersey.

The unit was reconstituted on 24 June 1921 in the Organized Reserves as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 157th Infantry Brigade, and assigned again to the 79th Division. It was organized in November 1921 at Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. The unit was redesignated on 23 March 1925 as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 157th Brigade and again on 24 August 1936 as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 157th Infantry Brigade.

The unit was converted and redesignated on 12 February 1942 as the 79th Reconnaissance Troop (less 3rd Platoon), 79th Division. Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 158th Infantry Brigade was concurrently converted and redesignated as the 3rd Platoon, 79th Reconnaissance Troop, 79th Division. The Troop was ordered into active military service on 15 June 1942 and reorganized at Camp Pickett, Virginia, as the 79th Cavalry Reconnaissance Troop, an element of the 79th Division (later redesignated as the 79th Infantry Division). The unit was again reorganized and redesignated on 2 August 1943 as the 79th Reconnaissance Troop, Mechanized. Deployed to the European Theater of Operations during World War II, the Troop participated in 5 campaigns: Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace and Central Europe. After the end of the war, the unit was inactivated on 11 December 1945 at Camp Kilmer, New Jersey.

The unit was reactivated on 28 January 1947 at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as the 79th Mechanized Cavalry Reconnaissance Troop. It was reorganized and redesignated on 15 July 1949 as the 79th Reconnaissance Company. During this period, the organized Reserves were redesignated on 25 March 1948 as the Organized Reserve Corps, which were in turn redesignated on 9 July 1952 as the Army Reserve. The Company remained a part of these organizations throughout the redesignations. The Company was inactivated on 20 April 1959 at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The unit was converted and redesignated (less 3rd Platoon) on 5 November 1962 as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 157th Infantry Brigade, and relieved from assignment to the 79th Infantry Division. 3rd Platoon, 79th Reconnaissance Company was concurrently redesignated as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 158th Infantry Brigade, which thereafter had a separate lineage. The Brigade was activated on 7 January 1963 at Upper Darby, Pennsylvania and its location was changed on 31 January 1968 to Horsham, Pennsylvania. It was inactivated there on 1 September 1995.

The unit was withdrawn on 24 October 1997 from the Army Reserve and allotted to the Regular Army. Its Headquarters was concurrently activated at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. The 157th Infantry Brigade assumed the role of training support brigade. The 157th Infantry Brigade (Training Support) was a US Army Reserve training support brigade with the mission of providing pre-mobilization leader and collective training assistance and support. The Brigade's main focus was providing training support, assistance, and evaluation to client units. The Brigade also provided assistance to civilian authorities during peacetime crises and/or natural disasters.

As part of the Training Support XXI program and the restructuring of continental US training elements in the First and Fifth US Armies, the 157th Infantry Brigade was inactivated on 16 October 1999 at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. Its personnel were reflagged as the 5th Brigade, 87th Division (Training Support).

Further changes to the structure of continental US training elements as part of the reorganization and redesignation of Fifth US Army as US Army, North (ARNORTH), led to the reactivation on 1 December 2006 of Headquarters, 157th Infantry Brigade at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. There it again assumed the role of training support brigade as part of Division East, First US Army. The 157th Infantry Brigade's primary mission was to provide training assistance and evaluation to Reserve and National Guard units in South Carolina and the South Eastern United States. These Priority Reserve and National Guard units would be the first Reserve Component units to deploy in the event of war. Additionally, in the event of disasters such as hurricanes, the 157th Infantry Brigade provided the Defense Coordinating Officer and the Defense Coordinating Element. Together they exercised command and control of Federal Military Forces working in conjunction with FEMA to assist State and Local Governments. The Brigade subsequently moved to Camp Atterbury, Indiana.




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