6th Mixed Brigade (People's Army of the Republic) - 6.ª Brigada Mixta (Ejército Popular de la República)

6th Mixed Brigade
Active October 1936 - March 28, 1939
country Spain
Fidelity Spanish flag Spanish Republic
Rama/s Red star.svg Regular People's Army
Type Infantry
High command

Notable commanders
Miguel Gallo Martinez
Wars and battles
Spanish Civil War

The 6th Mixed Brigade was a unit of the People's Army of the Republic created during the Spanish Civil War . Throughout the war, it would be the brigade that changed front on the most occasions. [ 1 ]


The unit was created in Murcia in October 1936, formed entirely from military forces from the Levantine region. [ 1 ] The command was handed over to Captain Miguel Gallo Martínez , [ 2 ] while Commander Ramón Ruiz-Fornells Ruiz was appointed as Chief of Staff and Benigno Alonso de Dios , of the PCE , as commissioner . [ 3 ]

Defense of Madrid

Due to the difficult situation that the republican defenders of Madrid were going through, the 6th BM immediately moved to the capital. By November 5, he had established his command post in Morata de Tajuña and had a force of 3,485 men. The brigade was entrusted with the area of the San Ferando Bridge , which was part of the Ciudad Universitaria sector . In the fighting that took place during the defense of Madrid, the brigade suffered significant casualties, although it distinguished itself in the assault on the Palacete de la Moncloa and the Sports Stadium in the context of a broader operation that sought to take control of theClinical Hospital . In January 1937 he took part in the Third Battle of the La Coruña highway , [ 4 ] during which he suffered about 1,000 casualties that led to the brigade being relieved and transferred to Villarobledo for rest and reorganization. [ 5 ]

Fighting in the south

On February 10 he had to march to the front of Andalusia urgently, with the mission of plugging the gap that had been opened as a result of the fall of Malaga . On the night of the 10th, he arrived at his destination, together with the XIII International Brigade , managing to stabilize the front on the road from Motril to Almería . [ 6 ]

During the spring, Gallo left command of the Brigade, as it went on to command the 24th Division , [ 7 ] being replaced by infantry captain Porfirio Ruiz de Alonso . The 6th BM went on to join the 38th Division in front of Extremadura. Between March 27 and April 13, he took part in the failed offensive against Peñarroya-Pueblonuevo.

Aragon front

After having moved to the Madrid area, in mid-July he left again, this time towards the Teruel front. There it was established in the Algarración sector, taking part in the fighting in the area while the Battle of Brunete took place in Madrid . When the operations in the Teruel area ended, the 6th BM was moved further north, remaining attached to the reserve of the V Army Corps of Modesto during the Zaragoza offensive , although finally it would take part in the fighting in the sector of medium . The brigade stayed on this front as a garrison for the next several months, and was in fact still there when in March 1938 it was surprised by theFranco's offensive in the Front of Aragon, precisely in the place where the main attack was unleashed. The 6th BM was unable to withstand the bulk of the enemy attack, after intense artillery fire, so it had to retreat. On March 11 he had to cross the river Ebro through the Pina area , and on the 17th he undertook a counterattack against the new bridgehead that Franco's troops had established in the Alcañiz - Castelserás sector , although the attempt failed.

Levante and Extremadura

After the defeats in Aragon, the 6th BM was assigned to the 19th Division of the Maneuver Army , being sent as reinforcement to the Levante front. Upon his arrival, he would be assigned to the so-called "Extremadura" Division , [ 8 ] a unit with which he fought on the Levante front, resisting the troops of the Galician Army Corps commanded by García Valiño , offering firm resistance in the sector. from La Iglesuela del Cid and Lucena .

In August 1938 the brigade marched again to the front of Extremadura, intervening in several counterattacks against Franco's forces in Castuera , where it lost many troops due to the harshness of the fighting. Due to heavy casualties, the brigade had to retreat to the rear. After staying for a season in Madrid to undertake a complete reorganization, he moved to Requena , and in September he returned again to the Extremadura front. In January 1939 he participated in the Valsequillo offensive , intervening in several attacks on the Vertice Morito. When the contest ended, the 6th BM was still present in Extremadura.



See also


  1. ^ A b Carlos Engel (1999), p. 14
  2. ^ Ramón Salas Larrazábal (2000), pp. 633, 654
  3. ^ Santiago Álvarez (1989), p. 226
  4. Jorge Martínez Reverte (2004), p. 514
  5. ^ Ramón Salas Larrazábal (2000), p. 1021
  6. ^ Manuel Tuñón de Lara (1989), p. 225
  7. ^ Ramón Salas Larrazábal (2000), p. 1135
  8. Martínez Bande, 1977 , p. 59.
  9. Álvarez, 1989, p. 181.


  • Alpert, Michael (1989). The Republican Army in the Civil War , XXI Century of Spain, Madrid, ISBN 84-3230-682-2
  • Álvarez, Santiago (1989). Political commissars in the People's Army of the Republic . Editions do Castro.
  • Engel Masoliver, Carlos (1999). History of the Mixed Brigades of the People's Army of the Republic . Madrid, Almena. 84-922644-7-0 .
  • Martínez Bande , José Manuel (1977). The offensive on Valencia . Madrid: San Martín. 84-7140-142-8 .
  • Martínez Reverte, Jorge (2004). The battle of Madrid . Barcelona: Criticism. ISBN 978-84-8432-871-1 .
  • Tuñón de Lara, Manuel; Arostegui, Julio; Viñas, Angel; Cardona, Gabriel; Bricall, Josep M. (1989). The Spanish Civil War 50 years later . Barcelona: Labor.
  • Salas Larrazábal, Ramón (2000); History of the People's Army of the Republic . The Sphere of Books SL ISBN 84-9734-465-0