By Mr. Richard Winship Stewart, Center of Military History (U.S. Army)
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A hundred and ten colour photos/illus. 10 x 10.
Additional resources for American Military History: The United States Army and the Forging of a Nation, 1775-1917
The British Government then sent over two understrength regiments of Regulars under Maj. Gen. Edward Braddock, a soldier of some forty-five years' experience on continental battlefields, to accomplish the task in which the militia had failed. Accustomed to the parade ground tactics and the open terrain of Europe, Braddock placed all his faith in disciplined Regulars and close order formations. He filled his regiments with American recruits and early in June 1755 set out on the long march through the wilderness to Fort Duquesne with a total force of about 34 2,200, including a body of Virginia and North Carolina militiamen.
While the militia was the main base for recruitment, and the officers were almost invariably men whose previous experience was in the militia, indentured servants and drifters without military 33 obligation were also enlisted. The enlistment period was only for the duration of a campaign, at best a year or so, not for long periods as in European armies. Colonial assemblies had to vote money for pay and supplies, and assemblies were usually parsimonious as well as unwilling to see volunteer forces assume any of the status of a standing Regular Army.
As a part-time citizen army, the militia was naturally not a well-disciplined, cohesive force comparable to the professional army of the age. Moreover, its efficiency, even for Indian fighting, varied from colony to colony and even from locality to locality within the same colony, depending on the ability and determination of commanders and the presence or absence of any threat. When engaged in eliminating an Indian threat to their own community, militiamen might be counted on to make up in enthusiasm what they lacked in discipline and formal training, but when the Indian threat was pushed westward there was a tendency for people along the seaboard to relax.