Ural Cossacks in the RCW

Bits and pieces put together that relate to the Ural Cossacks.

Note that the Ural Cossacks lived along the lower stretches of the Ural River, and nowhere near the Urals Mountains. The land away from that river, especially as you head south of Uralsk, is dry steppe.

map of Ural Cossack area
Clicking on the map will bring up a slightly higher resolution version.

Battles and Campaigns

Two small pieces relating to the early fighting, showing the farcical nature of the war during that period, especially while still in the "Railway War" phase.

The First Soviet Attack on Uralsk.

Ural Cossacks attack Red Armoured Cars.

An article about the most famous of all the Ural Cossack exploits, the surprise attack on Libshchensk in late 1919.

Get Chapaev!.

This is the official Soviet account of the last campaign in the Ural Host (largely taken from the Encyclopedia of Civil War and Intervention in the USSR).

The Uralsk-Guryev Operation, with maps.

Orders of Battle of the Ural Cossacks

The Urals Cossack Host was formally part of the main White forces in Siberia until they collapsed, but operationally it was separate. The Ataman commanded non-Cossack forces and parts of other Hosts, and various orders of battle deal with those in different ways. The Urals Host appears to have had both territorial and numerical naming systems, which makes tracing units difficult:

Ural units of the SouthWestern Army, December 1918

Independent Ural Army, April-September 1919

Independent Ural Army, July 1919

History of the Ural Host

The Ural Cossack Host was effectively isolated for most of the Civil War. Its almost total destruction at the end, due to the difficulty of retreating anywhere safe, meant it didn't have an emigre base to publicise its misfortunes. It has therefore been overlooked in most accounts of the war.

My brief history of the Host

A slightly longer history originally published in the "White Guard" Almanac


The uniforms for the various components of the Ural Cossack Army are in the Uniforms Section. It would make for quite a nice wargames army, if you wanted a very cavalry heavy one.

The host colour was "raspberry", which most often was the rather fetching pink of the representation of a Ural Cossack below.