18th Indian Division

The 18th Indian Division was an infantry division of the British Indian Army that saw active service in the First World War. It took part in the Mesopotamian campaign and formed part of the occupation force for Iraq post-war. The division was not reformed for the Second World War.[1]

18th Indian Division
Active24 December 1917 – 1921
Country British India
AllegianceBritish Crown
Branch British Indian Army
Part ofI Corps
EngagementsWorld War I
Mesopotamian Campaign
Battle of Sharqat
Major-General H.D. Fanshawe


Indian troops Mesopotamia

The 18th Indian Division was formed in Mesopotamia on 24 December 1917, although the last of its brigades (55th) was not formed until January 1918. Many of the division's units transferred directly from India so time was needed for them to become acclimatized. It remained in Mesopotamia for the rest of the First World War, taking part in the Action at Fat-ha Gorge on the Little Zab (23–26 October 1918) and the Battle of Sharqat (28–30 October 1918) under the command of I Corps.[2][3]

At the end of the war, the 18th Division was chosen to form part of the occupation force for Iraq. It took part in the Iraq Rebellion in 1920 and was broken up in the following year.[2]

Order of battleEdit

The division commanded the following units, although not all of them served at the same time:[4]

53rd Indian BrigadeEdit

54th Indian BrigadeEdit

55th Indian BrigadeEdit

Divisional ArtilleryEdit

Engineers and PioneersEdit

Divisional TroopsEdit

  • 249th Machine Gun Company
  • 18th Machine Gun Battalion[c]
  • 37th, 38th, 39th and 40th Combined Field Ambulances, RAMC
  • No. 12 Mobile Veterinary Section, AVC
  • 18th Division Train, ASC


The division was commanded from 7 January 1918 by Major-General H.D. Fanshawe[6] and from 12 March 1919 by Major-General Theodore Fraser.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ CCCXXXVI Brigade, Royal Field Artillery was originally the 2/II Home Counties Brigade of the 67th (2nd Home Counties) Division, Territorial Force.[5]
  2. ^ CCCXXXVII Brigade, Royal Field Artillery was originally the 2/III Home Counties Brigade of the 67th (2nd Home Counties) Division, Territorial Force.[5]
  3. ^ 18th Machine Gun Battalion was organised in November 1918 from the 207th, 238th, 239th and 249th Machine Gun Companies.[5]


  1. ^ Kempton 2003a, i
  2. ^ a b Perry 1993, p. 150
  3. ^ "18th Indian Division on The Regimental Warpath 1914 - 1918 by PB Chappell". Archived from the original on 17 May 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2015.
  4. ^ Perry 1993, p. 148
  5. ^ a b c Perry 1993, p. 149
  6. ^ Perry 1993, p. 147


  • Haythornthwaite, Philip J. (1996). The World War One Source Book. London: Arms and Armour Press. ISBN 1-85409-351-7.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
  • Kempton, Chris (2003a). 'Loyalty & Honour', The Indian Army September 1939 – August 1947. Part I Divisions. Milton Keynes: The Military Press. ISBN 0-85420-228-5.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
  • Moberly, F.J. (1923). Official History of the War: Mesopotamia Campaign. London: Imperial War Museum. ISBN 1-870423-30-5.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
  • Perry, F.W. (1993). Order of Battle of Divisions Part 5B. Indian Army Divisions. Newport: Ray Westlake Military Books. ISBN 1-871167-23-X.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
  • Wilson-Johnston, Lt.-Col. W.E. (2001) [1919]. Account of the Operations of the 18th (Indian) Division in Mesopotamia December 1917 to December 1918. Naval & Military Press. ISBN 978-1-84574-323-9.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)

External linksEdit