The 1st Battalion perpetuates the memory and traditions of the regiment from its founding as the Infantry School Corps on 21 December 1883, through the unit's re-designation in 1893 as The Royal Regiment of Canadian Infantry, and subsequently in 1901 as The RCR. The “1st Battalion” nomenclature was first used on 1 August 1945 when the Canadian-based reserve component of the regiment which had not fought in Europe was designated as the 1st Battalion, for service against Japan, which had not yet surrendered. This 1st Battalion, mainly reserve-based force, became stillborn with Japan’s defeat on 15 August 1945, and most of its soldiers dispersed to civilian life. In July 1950, the outbreak of the Korean War and the Government’s decision to send an infantry brigade to fight in it led to a massive expansion of the Canadian Army. This saw the Army’s three existing Regular Force infantry regiments expand to three battalions each, leading to the re-emergence of the designation “1st Battalion” within the now multi-battalion RCR.
Today the 1st Battalion is a forward-thinking and innovative mechanized infantry unit equipped with the LAV 6 Light Armoured Vehicle and a full suite of infantry weapons. Based in Victoria Barracks at 4th Canadian Division Support Base Petawawa, Ontario, the battalion’s officers, Non-Commissioned Officers and soldiers are tough and experienced professionals who are experts at reading the ground and at manoeuvring and employing mechanized forces. As the “Right-of-the-Line” infantry battalion in the Canadian Army the 1st Battalion is known for its maintenance of regimental tradition and for its high standards of discipline both in garrison and on the battlefield. Indeed the 1st Battalion’s World War II Commanding Officer coined the regimental slogan which other Canadian regiments have subsequently sought to emulate: “Never Pass a Fault”!