The Regiment was raised on 21 December 1883 as Canada’s first regular forces infantry regiment. Since then, Royal Canadians have served Canada in five wars, on four continents and in many crises and emergencies at home and abroad.
The first two deployments of the Regiment were to Saskatchewan to quell the Riel Resistance in 1885, and to the Yukon in 1896 to assist the North West Mounted Police in maintaining peace, order and good government during the Gold Rush. Three years later, hostilities between Great Britain and the Boer States erupted, and the Royal Canadians sailed immediately for South Africa, finally seeing action on a foreign battlefield on 1 January 1900.
During the Great War, the Regiment fought as a unit of the 7th Brigade at all the major battles of the Canadian Corps, including the Somme offensive, the capture of Vimy Ridge, Passshendaele and Canada’s “Hundred Days” spearheading the final Allied push for victory. During the war, Lieutenants Gregg and Campbell were awarded the Victoria Cross for valour. Gregg “for most conspicuous bravery and initiative during the operation near Cambrai 22 September to 1 October 1918”; and Campbell “for most conspicuous bravery on 15 June 1915 during the action at Givenchy”.
In the Second World War, the Regiment took part in the hard fought Italian Campaign that began in 1943 with the invasion of Sicily, and the Northwest European Campaign that liberated the Low Countries.
The Regiment continued its service to Canada during the Korean War, as part of 25th Canadian Brigade, Commonwealth Division. The Royal Canadians saw tough fighting in Korea, with 1 RCR at Kawong San and 3 RCR at Hill 187. The Regiment won a battle honour for its fierce fighting.
Today the Regiment continues to serve Canadians at home and abroad, in deployments in Bosnia, Macedonia, Kosovo, Somalia, Rwanda, Afghanistan and in almost all four corners of the world.