Happy Birthday to the US Army

Today is the 249th birthday of the US Army. I was going to post a 1979 version of the “I am the Infantry” presentation from then Fort Benning, now Fort Moore, but I figured it’s probably a little too parochial for the entire Army. I first saw it in 1976 when I reported for IOBC and saw it again in 1980 for IOAC. Back then live actors in period uniforms accompanied the presentation. It was inspiring. The YouTube version doesn’t do it justice.



This entry was posted in History, TTG. Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to Happy Birthday to the US Army

  1. Keith Harbaugh says:

    Gee, I wonder why this is:

    In any case, worth noting.

  2. Condottiere says:

    Its hurts to watch the video and see where we are now. Chicks in combat arms, especially the infantry and ranger school, legal sodomy in the barracks, same sex marriages, and tricare funded gender reassignments. Back in those days the proven warriors wore CIBs, EIBs, CFMBs, EFMBs, or had a mustard stain on their wings. Now they have participation trophy for everyone else called CABs and EABs. Basic training used to have Shark Attack where everyone got welcomed into the army with a first rite of passage. It was recently replaced with something really stupid. Back in the day the army had something called Payday Activities. It was a tradition as old as the Army itself. It’s when soldiers have an open rank inspection in Class A uniform before going in front of the commander to get paid. Soldiers would spend the whole month preparing their class A hoping they don’t get their pass revoked. The whole process of getting paid in an orderly fashion required discipline and military bearing in the army. It was the one opportunity gets to meet their commander face to face and possibly make an impression. For a centuries the Army paid in cash. Then the tradition moved to hand writing checks. Then printed checks. Then direct deposit became mandatory and the tradition briefly continued with just handing the soldier a pay stub. Then no face to face with commander and just an in ranks inspection. Then in ranks inspections became rare. Then it became the one day out of the month where soldiers get off early. Now its nothing. The army used to be fun until Tail Hook made it into the media. Some posts had beer vending machines and dining facilities served beer. E clubs, NCO clubs, and O clubs were on every post. Now everything is soft, risk averse, and woke. Oh what I would give to bring the army back.

    • John Minehan says:

      Of course. I remember being a Firing Battery XO in Germany back in the day, with a former Marine 0311 as Chief or Firing Battery marching out for a Pay Day inspection and having him say, “Sir, perhaps we need to take a chance after PT to just practice marching the next few weeks.”

      They could shoot, move and communicate. This marching and D&C stuff was not quite their forte.

      As Professor “Doc” Carroll said of COL (R) Lang’s alma mater, “VMI is not what it used to be . . . . and never was.”

      • TTG says:

        John Minehan,

        Pay day activities was still going strong in the 25th Infantry Division in the late 70s, but the inspections were in khakis. Not a set of greens or dress blues in sight.

        In 10th Group, I’ve only seen our troops involved in two parades. They could march okay, but the many limps were noticeable.

        • John Minehan says:

          I supported 95th CA with Intel in Africa in this last thing. I noticed that tended to be the case.

          “Top can’t take a PT Test until January, since he got a shot a few times in Afghanistan.”

          You guys do a lot of good in the SOF Community.

        • Fred says:

          Uniform inspections? Twice a year (summer whites/winter blues) and just before deployment. Submariners do it differently.

  3. leith says:

    That has to be Colonel Prescott with the red vest and long gray coat who had his hat shot off. Who is that in blue on his right also standing on the parapet? Not General Warren I suspect, who had fought as a Private soldier. He was KIA when the ammunition ran out. The bloodthirsty Brits stole his clothes and repeatedly bayoneted his dead body. They were in a blood lust because of their blood massive losses. Definitely a Pyrrhic Victory for them.

    Happy birthday Soldiers!

    • TTG says:


      It may be John Stark. It can’t be Putnam, who was an old man even at Bunker Hill. Here’s a good account of that battle done as a battle study.


      • leith says:

        That blue suit is too pretty to be Stark. I first thought Thomas Knowlton from Connecticut, first US Army Ranger. But Knowlton was at the rail fence.

        • TTG says:


          It couldn’t be Stark or Knowlton. They weren’t at the redoubt with Prescott. I guess we’d have to ask Don Troiani who that is supposed to be since it’s his painting.

          • Fred says:


            My guess is Dr. Joseph Warren, MG of Massachusetts’ colonial militia at Bunker Hill.

          • leith says:

            Fred may be right. While it’s true that Warren refused command and went to the trench as a Pvt, he undoubtedly had the fire in his belly to jump up to stand on the ramparts. And the fancy clothes fit. He had married an heiress and was known to wear ruffles.

          • Fred says:


            He was also President of the Massachusetts provisional Congress. Much much more than a dandy who married a heiress.

          • leith says:

            Fred –

            Warren was definitely NOT a dandy. He was born and raised on a farm. The vote to make him President of the Massachusetts provisional Congress was unanimous. Just a few months after that he decided to lead by example: “hearing the British had landed at Charlestown he mounted his horse and rode over to Bunker Hill. He asked for the place of greatest need and danger, and, near the end of the battle when the Americans were retreating and he was trying to rally the militia he was struck by a ball in the head and instantly killed.”

            Hell of a good doctor also per the Journal of Clinical Medicine. As a young doctor he made his reputation by “his successful treatment of smallpox patients, during the epidemic that scourged the New England cities at that period”.

  4. Lars says:

    History always leave some behind, but I would venture that today technical skills are more important than brute force. Something the Russians are slowly learning. I recently saw an interview with a Swedish coastal force sergeant, who is a specialist in fighting on the thousands of islands that surround Sweden and she sounded very competent and now other NATO countries are training with them to learn what they know. And she is female. In addition, I doubt drones care about the gender of the operator. I am sure there will always be more men in the infantry, but I saw something interesting on TV the other day. A basketball net had tangled and several boys tried to jump up and untangle it to no avail. Then the cheerleaders showed up and lifted one of them up to do the job, standing on the shoulders of them.

  5. F&L says:

    Sit back and enjoy.

    Justified: All of Raylan’s pistol duels. (27 min)

  6. English Outsider says:

    That led to an engrossing account of the establishment of the army, with an overview of the evolution of military tactics as new weapons developed thrown in.

    (CHAPTER 1

    The Army of Observation: New England in Arms)


    Getting much further along the timeline, a lecture on what those armed forces grew into. D-Day and sequence. In the Q & A session the speaker, Rick Atkinson impressed us all, partly with his encyclopaedic knowledge, but also with an extraordinary ability to deploy that knowledge in off the cuff answers. Nice to see a master of his subject on the loose.


    Apparently in warfare “The British have a genius for duplicity, the Germans for destruction”. Have to think about that one.

  7. leith says:

    EO –

    It is not all British that have the attribute of duplicity, only a subset of Brits. It is you English that have earned the reputation of being ”wiley Sassenachs” by the Scots. Or similar terms used in Ireland and Wales. However, English duplicity is child’s play compared to the guile and subterfuge of the Muscovites.

    BTW thanks for the Atkinson link. He wrote a trilogy on the US Army in WWII. It is well worth a read.

  8. mcohen says:

    I would imagine that compulsory military service for all new immigrants would raise a mighty army.

  9. Keith Harbaugh says:

    This should really help recruiting. /s

    “Soldiers Now Face Punishment for Sharing, Liking Extremist Content on Social Media Under New Army Policy”


    “the new set of rules more clearly outline that extremism is broad and includes
    advocating for widespread unlawful discrimination based on
    “race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity or sexual orientation.”
    A Military.com investigation found numerous incidents of extremist activity among service members and veterans in recent years”

Comments are closed.