Several units have had the designation Sixth U.S. Infantry since 1798. However, the present Sixth U.S. Infantry was constituted on January 11, 1812, when Congress authorized a strengthening of the regular army in preparation for the threatening war with England. The regiment, which was then known as the 11th Infantry was consolidated with four other regiments and designated the Sixth U.S. Infantry. In 1837 the regiment was gathered together in Florida for the war with the Seminole Indianna, and at the conclusion of that war, the Sixth was redistributed in western outposts. Following the admission of Texas into the Union in 1845, various units of the regiment defeated Santa Anna’s Mexican Forces. In the spring of 1862 the regiment went into action at historic Yorktown. On July 1, the Sixth was with the army near the town of Gettysburg. The regiment played a prominent part in this, the decisive battle of the Civil War. In this action, the Sixth fought with distinction and honor and won its sixth battle streamer of the war, “Gettysburg”. After the war the Sixth returned to its duties on the frontier. In the Spanish-American War, it went to Cuba and took part in the battle for Santiago, then it sailed to the Philippines to help quell the Philippine Insurrection and fought in the battles on Negros in 1899 and Panay in 1900.
In France in World War I, the regiment trained under the 28th Division in the Toul-Boucq area before joining the 5th Division for the battle in the Arnould Sector in June of 1918, with whom they fought throughout the remainder of the war. Between World Wars I and II the regiment trained with the 5th and 6th Divisions. It was selected to become part of the First Armored Division on July 15, 1940, when it was redesignated the Sixth Infantry ( Armored). It was later broken into separate battalions and redesignated the 5th, 11th, and 14th Armored Infantry Battalions. During World War II the regiment played an important role in the African campaign and Italian invasion. Fighting the war usually as separate battalions attached to various combat commands, the Sixth fought its way through Algeria, French Morocco, and Tunesia in 1942 and 1943. By May of 1943, the regiment had suffered so many casualties that it could no longer operate effectively. It was withdrawn from combat and spent the next six months recovering and training in North Africa. Late in 1943, the regiment was again committed in the Naples-Foggia area, It was here that the Sixth, reunited, was given the mission of assaulting the Axis stronghold of Mount Porchia. In 13 days of bitter fighting, the regiment accomplished its mission and earned a Distinguished Unit Citation.
It was then employed in the Anzio beachhead in 1944, again operating as a unit throughout the Rome-Arno campaign. Later, the Sixth was broken up in a reorganization program, but elements of the regiment earned two more battle streamers in Northern Italy before the end of the war.
The period of 1945 to 1950 saw various organizational changes as the elements of the regiment were assigned throughout the American Zone of West Germany. As part of the Allied effort to strengthen defenses in West Berlin, required by threats from the East, the Sixth was reconstituted on October 10, 1950, and was then assigned to Berlin. The Second and Third Battle Groups came into being on June 1, 1958, as a result of the Army’s reorganization under the Pentomic concept. On September 23, 1963, the battle groups were again reorganized under the present ROAD system, thus being designated battalions.
From Lundy’s Lane in 1812 to Berlin Today, The Sixth Infantry has compiled 154 years of service to our nation, proving its motto-“Unity is Strength”.