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291st Rifle Division
Active 1941–1945
Country Soviet Union
Branch Red Army
Type Rifle division
Engagements World War II
Decorations
Battle honours
Commanders
Notable
commanders
Mikhail Enshin

The 291st Rifle Division (Russian: 291-я стрелковая дивизия) was an infantry division of the Soviet Union's Red Army during World War II. Formed in the summer of 1941, the 290th fought in the Siege of Leningrad until its end in January 1944, and then in the Baltic states, Poland, Germany, and Czechoslovakia before being disbanded after the end of the war in the summer of 1945.

History[edit | edit source]

The 291st was formed in early July 1941 as the 11th Moscow Militia Division, which soon received a regular Red Army cadre and on 12 July became the 291st Rifle Division. Its basic order of battle included the 181st, 309th, and 1025th Rifle Regiments, as well as the 838th Artillery Regiment. Less than a month after its formation, the division was sent to Leningrad, and by 17 August was part of the city's Krasnogvardeysk fortified sector. At the beginning of September, the division was transferred to the 23rd Army, holding positions against Finnish attack north of the city. The division served with the 23rd Army until March 1943, when it transferred to the 55th Army of the Leningrad Front. In January 1944, when the Leningrad–Novgorod Offensive, which ended the siege, began, the division was part of the 67th Army. At the time, the average rifle company in the division had about 70 men, half of authorized strength.[1]

In April 1944 the 67th Army was transferred to the 3rd Baltic Front, and the division became part of the army's 116th Rifle Corps. In September the division was withdrawn to the Reserve of the Supreme High Command where it remained for over three months. Returning to the front in December, the 291st became part of the 1st Ukrainian Front's 21st Army. The division fought in Poland, Germany, and northern Czechoslovakia for the rest of the war.[1] The division was disbanded in the summer of 1945 with the Central Group of Forces.[2]

References[edit | edit source]

Citations[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Sharp 1996, pp. 64.
  2. Feskov et al 2013, p. 413.

Bibliography[edit | edit source]

  • Feskov, V.I.; Golikov, V.I.; Kalashnikov, K.A.; Slugin, S.A. (2013) (in Russian). Tomsk: Scientific and Technical Literature Publishing. ISBN 9785895035306. 
  • Sharp, Charles C. (1996). The Soviet Order of Battle World War II: An Organizational History of the Major Combat Units of the Soviet Army. 9. West Chester, Ohio: George F. Nafziger. OCLC 258366685. 


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