A Short History of the US Army

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Ava Spragins, Staff Reporter

The United States Army was founded on June 14, 1775, by the Continental Congress. The Continental Army was placed under the control of General George Washington during the American Revolution. General Washington found that many of the militiamen were acclimated to return home upon the resolution of the battle, and realized that in order to actually have a working army, he would need to take the issue to the Continental Congress. The Continental Congress agreed to build a single standing force from the colonies, with trained soldiers enlisted for longer serving periods. This was the first genuine army the United States ever had and the beginning of the US Military. Congress ignored the plan for a single, trained army, an idea that had surfaced after the Revolution as different militia groups in the US during the war had proved to be usually unreliable, and when George Washington was elected president, the US Army consisted of only 595 men. However, during the War of 1812, that number rose to almost 460,000 American recruits, though few of them experienced conflict first-hand. By the time WWII broke out in 1939, the army had grown to 125,000 troops, and in 1941, it expanded to 8,300,000 troops, with 5,000,000 deployed overseas. As of 2020, 1.3 million people serve in the US Military. This number could continue to grow in upcoming years, depending on multiple factors such as tension between countries and whether or not the United States resolve the conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and Kuwait.