Egorlyk Operation of 1920

Egorlyk Operation of 1920


an offensive operation by the First Cavalry Army (commander, S. M. Budennyi; member of the Revolutionary Military Council, K. E. Voroshilov) and Tenth Army (commander, A. V. Pavlov; member of the Revolutionary Military Council, N.I . Podvoiskii) against the White Guard troops of General A. I. Denikin between February 14 and March 2, 1920; part of the North Caucasian Operation of 1920.

The goal of the plan of the command of the Caucasian Front (commander, M. N. Tukhachevskii; member of the Revolutionary Military Council, G. K. Ordzhonikidze) was to wipe out the White defense on the Manych River and crush Denikin’s remaining forces. On February 14–15 the Tenth Army forced the Manych and broke through the enemy front; it occupied the Torgovaia railroad station on February 16. The First Cavalry Army (10,000 men) was introduced into the breakthrough. Denikin moved General A. A. Pavlov’s cavalry group (10,000–12,000 men) to the flank of the Soviet troops. On February 17 this group threw back the Tenth Army flank screen and on the night of February 18 attacked Torgovaia. The First Cavalry Army repulsed the enemy strike and forced him to retreat toward the Srednii Egorlyk in bitter cold weather, which caused large frostbite losses.

On February 21 the First Cavalry Army drove the Whites out of Srednii Egorlyk and then, setting up a screen there (the 11th Cavalry Division), moved with its main forces toward the southwest. On February 22 it crushed the I Kuban’ Corps in the area of Belaia Glina and on February 25 turned toward the north. On that same day General Pavlov’s group threw back the 11th Cavalry Division and occupied Srednii Egorlyk.

On February 25–27 to the south of Srednii Egorlyk the largest cavalry encounter in the entire Civil War took place (up to 25,000 men on both sides). In the battle the White cavalry was defeated and withdrew toward Egorlykskaia. The First Cavalry Army received important assistance in the Egorlyk operation from the rifle units of the Tenth Army. Denikin moved his last reserves to the Egorlykskaia-Ataman region, but on March 1–2 the Whites were crushed in desperate fighting. Having lost their ability to resist, the survivors began a disorderly retreat. This led to the collapse of the entire Denikin front. The Egorlyk operation is a model of the Soviet art of war during the Civil War.


Agureev, K. V. Razgrom belogvardeiskikh voisk Denikina (okt. 1919-mart 1920). Moscow, 1961.
Budennyi, S. M. Proidennyi put’, book 1. Moscow, 1958.