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IJA 3rd Division

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Title: IJA 3rd Division  
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Subject: Katsura Tarō, First Sino-Japanese War, Battle of Shanghai, Yamanashi Hanzō, China Expeditionary Army, Rensuke Isogai, Uehara Yūsaku, Defense of Sihang Warehouse, Battle of Te-li-Ssu, Nobutaka Shiōden
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IJA 3rd Division

3rd Division

Soldiers of 6th Inf. Regt., 3rd Division crossing the Bái hé River during Ichang Operation, 8 May 1940.
Active 1888–1945
Country Empire of Japan Empire of Japan
Branch Imperial Japanese Army
Type Infantry
Garrison/HQ Nagoya, Aichi, Japan
Nickname "Lucky Division"
Engagements First Sino-Japanese War
Russo-Japanese War
Siberian Intervention
Shandong Incident
Taro Katsura
Yoshimichi Hasegawa
Yusaku Uehara
Nobuyoshi Muto

The 3rd Division (第3師団 Daisan shidan?) was an infantry division in the Imperial Japanese Army. Its call sign was the Lucky Division (幸兵団 Kō-heidan?).


The 3rd Division was formed in Nagoya in January 1871 as the Nagoya Garrison (名古屋鎮台 Nagoya chindai?), one of six regional commands created in the fledgling Imperial Japanese Army. The Nagoya Garrison had responsibility for the central region of Japan. This region was known as the Chūbu district, and stretched from Aichi Prefecture to Ishikawa Prefecture. Upon the recommendations of the Prussian military advisor Jakob Meckel to the Japanese government, the six regional commands were transformed into divisions under the army reorganization of 14 May 1888.

As one of the oldest divisions in the Imperial Japanese Army, the 3rd Division participated in combat operations during the First Sino-Japanese War, the Russo-Japanese War, the Siberian Intervention, and the Shandong Incident.

Some of its more noteworthy commanders included Katsura Taro, Hasegawa Yoshimichi, Uehara Yusaku and Nobuyoshi Muto.

During the early stages of the Second Sino-Japanese War the 3rd Division participated in the Battles of Shanghai and Xuzhou and was subsequently was one of the divisions assigned to the China Expeditionary Army (CGA) headquartered in Nanjing. The 3rd Division also served in nearly every theatre in central China. During the Zhejiang-Jiangxi campaign it was converted into a triangular division. It later served, for a time as a headquarters and garrison division for strategic Zhejiang Province.

Battles and Campaigns fought in China (1937–1945)

At the end of World War II, with the dissolution of the Imperial Japanese Army, the 3rd Division was formally disbanded in Zhejiang.


The originally the 3rd Division was organized as a square division:

3rd Division

  • 5th Infantry Brigade
    • 6th Infantry Regiment
    • 68th Infantry Regiment
  • 29th Infantry Brigade
  • 3rd Field Artillery Regiment
  • 3rd Cavalry Regiment
  • 3rd Engineer Regiment
  • 3rd Transport Regiment

On July 4, 1942 the order of battle for 3rd Division was reorganized as a triangular division in China.

3rd Division

  • 3rd Infantry Brigade Group
    • 6th Infantry Regiment
    • 34th Infantry Regiment
    • 68th Infantry Regiment
  • 3rd Cavalry Regiment
  • 3rd Field Artillery Regiment
  • 3rd Construction Regiment
  • 3rd Transport Regiment

See also

Reference and further reading

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