Born from an 1845 Act of Congress and formed at Jefferson Barracks, Missouri in October 1846, the 3rd Cavalry Regiment was initially known as the "Regiment of Mounted Riflemen" and was tasked with the protection of settlers moving west along the Oregon Trail. But the acceleration of the Mexican-American war diverted the regiment from its original mission. After hard fighting in the Battle of Contreras, the unit was addressed by U.S. Commander Winfield Scott, who praised them with words that would become the unit’s motto: "Brave Rifles! Veterans! You have been baptized in fire and blood and have come out steel!" The opening phrase, "Brave Rifles, soon became the unit's nickname and is now its Special Designation.

In 1861, less than four months after the opening salvos of the Civil War at Fort Sumter, the unit was reclassified as "cavalry" and designated the 3rd U.S. Cavalry Regiment. Stationed in New Mexico, it battled an invading Confederate force from Texas at Valverde in the largest Civil War battle fought in the far west. Afterwards it was attached to the Army of the Tennessee, where it performed reconnaissance and relief duties under the command of General William Sherman.

Between the Civil War and World War I, the regiment fought in the Indian Wars (most notably the Battle of Rosebud Creek), the Spanish-American War (Battle of San Juan Hill), and the Philippine-America War (sixty-two engagements over a deployment spanning a total of six years). Though deployed overseas during World War I, only the regiment’s K Troop saw combat.

A name change—3rd Cavalry Group (Mechanized)—preceded the regiment’s deployment to France in 1994, where it was attached to XX Corps and helped spearhead the Third Army’s breakout from the Normandy beachhead. It had the honor of being the first to reach the Meuse and Moselle Rivers, and historically crossed the Rhine on March 29, 1945.

As the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, the unit was at the forefront of the whirlwind offensive of the Gulf War in 1991, piercing or bypassing elements of three Republican Guard divisions to advance more than 300 kilometers in 100 hours. After a peacekeeping stint in Bosnia, the regiment next saw combat during its initial deployment to Iraq, the first of four tours of duty for the unit as part of part of Operation Iraqi Freedom which resulted in six valorous unit awards. In November 2011, it was designated Stryker regiment and was given its current name of 3rd Cavalry Regiment.

The CSIB (Combat Service Identification Badge) of the 3rd Cavalry features a green background, reflecting the green facings of the regiment’s original uniforms. A gold trumpet forms the centerpiece of the badge, bracketed by the words "Brave" and "Rifles"—the words that Winfield Scott used to begin his praise of the unit’s performance at the Battle of Contreras. A more ornate cavalry trumpet appears on the unit crest (Distinctive Unit Insignia), as do the words "Brave Rifles".

Related Items:
3rd Cavalry Regiment Patch (SSI)

3rd Cavalry Regiment Unit Crest (DUI)

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