Louisiana Maneuvers

1667 Words 7 Pages
What Were The Louisiana Maneuvers? World War I revealed that the U.S. military was still quite unprepared for modern war. Doctrine was out of date, experience in the command of large forces was nonexistent, and the coordination of arms and services was largely a matter of theory. Post WW I, twenty years of inadequate funding and bare bone units had made the U.S. Army little more than a token establishment. On 1 September 1939, the day that Germany's attack on Poland signaled the beginning of World War II, the U.S. Army ranked approximately seventeenth in effectiveness among the armies of the world, just behind that of Romania. The Regular Army totaled less than 190,000 personnel. Of 174,000 enlisted men, 45,300 were stationed overseas. The …show more content…
The mock battles known as the Louisiana Maneuvers had one purpose and that was to prepare America’s troops for the war that had already begun in Europe and which was threatening to spread around the entire globe. The Louisiana Maneuvers were the final and largest “war games” before the US entered into World War II.
The United States Army had nearly double in size from 620,000 troops in December of 1940 to 1,460,998 troops by mid-1941. The main purposes of these maneuvers were to make the mistakes here at home, and learn from them, rather than make these mistakes in Europe and the Pacific. Nearly half a million men participated in these maneuvers; they marched, crossed rivers, rode horses or drove vehicles, and they parachuted from planes over thousands of miles making this, the Louisiana Maneuvers, the largest military exercise of its kind in the United States Army. My father recently retired after a cumulative 36 years of service in the US Marine Corps and Navy. He and my Mother travel to Alexandria, LA to celebrate the occasion with several of his friends from other services. They stayed at the Hotel Bentley which experienced visits during the
…show more content…
There were to be two events in the spring and autumn of 1940 and two more the following year, with the largest, most complex and most important to be held in September 1941. The 1940 maneuvers began in May with 70,000 soldiers, who trained and “fought” in four separate exercises of three days each, beginning on May 9.
After the May war games, several senior tank experts, including Colonel George S. Patton Jr., recommended the Army create separate armored divisions that could operate unencumbered by infantry or horse cavalry units. The recommendation was forwarded to Army Chief of Staff General George C. Marshall, who quickly established a special armored training school at Fort Knox,

Related Documents