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USA Infantry Replacement Training Centers (IRTC)

Discussion in 'Military Training, Doctrine, and Planning' started by Earthican, Sep 14, 2013.

  1. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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  2. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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    I finished the complete list. I found and forgot a few of them before.

    I've added links to soldiers letters that trained at these centers. Letters from the training centers are actually the most interesting. Due to censoring, letters from overseas are quite dull.

    The US Army official history has a whole section on the RTC's. I'll see if I can abstract anything interesting.

    Camp Blanding, Florida

    Camp Croft, South Carolina
    http://www.schistory.net/campcroft/

    Camp Fannin, Texas
    http://www.campfannin.com/AboutUs/about.htm

    Camp Hood, Texas (also Tank Destroyer Training Center)

    Fort McClellan, Alabama

    Camp Roberts, California (also Field Artillery Training Center)
    http://www.militarymuseum.org/campbob.html

    Camp Robinson, Arkansas

    Camp Wheeler, Georgia
    http://www.igreenbaum.com/2011/12/04/first-card-from-camp-upton-on-long-island/

    Camp Wolters, Texas
    http://www.fortwolters.com/camp_wolters.html
    http://www.privateletters.net/letters.html


    I'll note these because I know particular infantrymen that trained there:

    Fort Benning, Georgia (also Infantry OCS)

    Fort Riley, Kansas (Cavalry Training Center)
     
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  3. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow

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    Ah, thanks E. That answers a question I had about my dad's service. I knew he trained in CA before heading over to Korea. He had 8th Army and 45th Division patches, which made sense for Korea. Now his 7th AD patch makes sense. He must have trained at Camp Roberts.

    EDIT: Didn't want to add another off topic post, so thought I'd respond here. The link provided for Camp Roberts (see post #2) has the 7th AD there during Korea, hence my response and thanks.
     
  4. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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    Not sure what the situation was at Camp Roberts in the 1950's but in this same period the Army put recruit training under the Regular Army divisions inactive since WWII. I know the "6th Armored Division" was at Fort Leonard Wood. This seems to have been a morale building scheme more than anything else.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Back on topic....
    The evidence is thin but at each ITRC there were several training regiments with three or four battalions each. The numbering of regiments appears to be unique (6th through 10th Regiments at Camp Croft) and the battalions appear to be numbered across the regiments (25th through 41st Battalions at Camp Croft).

    The training staff of each battalion was called a cadre (often confused with the cadre of officers and men provided to activate the new Regular and Reserve divisions). The trainees came straight from the state or regional Reception Centers where enlistees were medically examined and issued uniforms.

    The selection of the original training cadre is not known but over time a number of NCO's from combat units were rotated back to the US and served as training cadre.
    http://www.al4lions.com/Home/the-joe-barisa-story

    The first assignment of many Fort Benning OCS graduates was to the IRTC's where they could hone their troop leadership skills and add to their depth of knowledge on military subjects. After several training cycles these new second lieutenants would be shipped overseas as replacement rifle platoon leaders.

    The length of the training cycle varied from 17 weeks down to 13 weeks when the crunch for overseas replacements became acute.


    *****EDIT****9/24/2013
    This link (63d ID Association website) provides images from a booklet put out by the IRTC command -- I am a Doughboy. It describes the elements of an infantry regiment and uses photos from stateside training.

    http://63rdinfdiv.com/InfantryRegiment.html
     
  5. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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    Besides the IRTC's the other major source for infantry replacements in early 1944 was the transfer of personnel from other Ground Force units such as Antiaircraft Artillery and Tank Destroyer. Described here by a post-war report:

    http://www.history.army.mil/books/agf/AGF007/ch12.htm

    I used Stanton to try to identify those nine regiments and their locations:

    90th Infantry - Cp Carson, CO; Cp Gruber OK; Cp Rucker, AL
    113th Infantry - Cp Picket, VA; Ft Jackson ,SC; Cp Rucker AL
    124th Infantry - Ft Benning, GA; Ft Jackson, SC
    125th Infantry - Cp Maxie, TX, Cp Gruber, OK; Cp Rucker, AL
    140th Infantry - Cp Howze, TX; Cp Swift, TX; Cp Rucker, AL
    144th Infantry - Cp Van Dorn, MS; Cp Swift, TX; Cp Rucker, AL
    174th Infantry - Cp Chaffee, AR; Cp Gruber, OK; Cp Rucker, AL
    201st Infantry - Cp Carson, CO; Ft Jackson, SC; Cp Rucker, AL
    300th Infantry - Cp McCain, MS; Ft Jackson, SC; Cp Rucker, AL

    Had the war continued it appears Camp Rucker would have become an IRTC.

    ***EDITED List 11 JUL 2014
    Add:

    The experience of the 144th Infantry is likely typical:
    http://www.texasmilitaryforcesmuseum.org/144th.htm

    ***



    The story that got me thinking about these men and their training regiments was from the Jazz artist Dave Brubeck.


    http://www.jazzwax.com/2010/02/interview-dave-brubeck-part-1.html

    Assuming the following article did not pick the 140th Infantry out of thin air, the memory of training in Texas would match their record.

    http://www.nww2m.com/2012/12/remembering-dave-brubeck-his-first-big-break/

     
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  6. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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    By searching "##th infantry training" & "CAMP NAME" I was somewhat able to construct the number ranges for the infantry training battalions. The reliable search "hits" were from obits, family research, and letters. Some numbers got no "hits" but the next number often did until the "hits" died out completely. So the beginning and end number are uncertain.

    The number range for Camp Wolters was developed as above but the number range for Camp Fannin came from the website.
    http://www.campfannin.com/Battalion/battallonresearch.htm
    Camp Fannin searches pretty much failed for "hits" on obits, family research and letters.


    Infantry Training Battalion number ranges

    Wheeler ~ 3 - 17
    Croft ~ 20 - 41
    Wolters ~ 51 - 69
    Fannin ~ 51 - 68 and 77 - 84
    Howze ~ 42 and 57
    Roberts ~ 76 - 90
    Blanding ~ 191 - 232



    Branch Immaterial Training Battalion number ranges

    McClellan ~ 1 - 24
    Robinson ~ 51 - 73


    Sources for McClellan and Robinson


    Robinson

    http://home.pcisys.net/~pwebber/31_id/text/camp_robinson.txt

    http://freepages.military.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~allenfamily/


    McClellan
    http://www.newspapers.com/newspage/19502366/

    August 2, 1942
    The Anniston Star from Anniston, Alabama

     
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  7. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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    I searched the web to include a description of IRTC training from a participant. This was more difficult than I thought and easier than it should have been. At first I searched broad terms and got popular history sites but once I searched for narrow terms (place names, terminology, ...) the 'hits' got good.

    I did manage to find a very detailed description, almost too detailed. I can only post the beginning and hope the link stays good for years to come.


    http://www.89infdivww2.org/memories/jochen.htm

    Story from an older soldier that shipped overseas immediately after IRT.

    http://www.pleacher.com/wwii/wwii.html

     
  8. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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    A footnote to the IRTC's is the withdrawal of infantrymen from the new Reserve divisions. These divisions were formed from a cadre of officers and NCO's taken, initially, from the Regular Army divisions plus a filler of draftees fresh from the regional Reception Centers.


    http://www.history.army.mil/books/agf/AGF007/index.htm

    Table: 24,541 men
    September to December 1943

    Using Stanton I tried to identify the non-divisional infantry regiments that were broken-up in early to mid 1944.

    33d Infantry - Cp Claiborne, LA
    131st Infantry - Ft Benning. GA
    138th Infantry - Cp Shelby, MS
    153d Infantry - Cp Shelby, MS
    176th Infantry - Ft Benning, GA
    181st Infantry - Ft Dix, NJ



    http://www.history.army.mil/books/agf/AGF007/index.htm

    Table: 78,703 men
    April to September 1944


    I used this Google search to get a link to two tables found in the US Army official history.

    procurement of ground forces "withdrawals of enlisted men" "83d"

    http://books.google.com/books?id=niuxoT2im0cC&pg=PA473&lpg=PA473&dq=procurement+of+ground+forces+%22withdrawals+of+enlisted+men%22+%2283d%22&source=bl&ots=TlGQnnigsq&sig=1ZQiN-HoWt7JbPOtQStCva356AA&hl=en&sa=X&ei=1BzAU9iCAe7RsQSY6YCIDw&ved=0CBYQ6AEwAA

    While examining these tables I noticed that among the divisions listed there are none that went to the Pacific. I am certain the 77th, 81st, 96th, and 98th Divisions gave-up men for overseas replacements.
     
  9. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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    I have this memoir from a veteran that trained with the 69th Infantry Division before being "withdrawn" as an overseas replacement. Apparently based on a diary it has some firm dates. He was eventually assigned to the 34th ID in Italy.


    http://www.deadfamilies.com/Wallworth/RNW-World-War-II-Part-1.html

     
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  10. Tigershark35

    Tigershark35 New Member

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    Hi. Researching anything about Camp Wolters. Writing biography of General Wolters and the commanders of the Camp. Anything relating to Wolters AFB or later Fort Wolters is if interest. Anything about teaining planning or construction kof an IRTC is of interest.
    Thanks
     
  11. Earthican

    Earthican Member

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    While web researching these entries I found Camp Hood had some amount of IRTC training late in the war that I had not known about before. I included a small amount of information as a place holder with the intent to find more, if possible. I now believe there was a conversion of some of the Tank Destroyer replacement training to Infantry training.

    Recently I came cross this veteran's account of infantry/ASTP training at North Camp Hood. I had read before accounts of crouching in the bottom of a foxhole while "enemy" tanks overran the trainees. I suspect the TD School added the use of "sticky bombs" to this type of training (below).

    http://www.pierce-evans.org/pwpart1.htm

     
  12. Steve_B

    Steve_B New Member

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    Hello. New to this forum. I am trying to determine where my dad (he is 97 now) did his basic training.

    Dad was inducted into the army on 8-Apr-41 in Newark, NJ. The information I have from his memory is that he left Newark by train for Trenton, NJ. I've assumed that his reception center was at Ft Dix, NJ since it is very close to Trenton, but that is my assumption.

    He believes he did his basic training in Georgia. Again my assumption was Ft Wheeler, Macon, Ga. but that could be incorrect.

    Following basic training he was assigned to the 28th Infantry Division of the Pennsylvania National Guard, which had recently been inducted into federal service on 17-Feb-41. He was in the 111th Infantry Regiment, Company K.

    Can anyone shed some light as to the likely location for his basic training, based on where he was ultimately assigned. Any other information would be most welcomed.
    Thank you,
    Steve
     

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