Fort Knox, Ky. June, 1941. Panoramic photograph, 8 x 36 inches. Vertical creases throughout, minor edge wear. Good. Item #4104
The African-American soldiers of Company A, 4th Battalion of the United States Army's Armored Force Replacement Training Center are pictured here along with their white officers who sit at center of the first row. The company numbers almost 200 soldiers, all featured here in beige uniforms and envelope caps, arranged in four rows. The soldiers who composed the Armored Force were specially trained at Fort Knox in mechanized warfare, especially in tanks.
"The Armored Force School and the Armored Force Replacement Center were officially established at Fort Knox on December 1, 1940. The school trained armored force soldiers in military fundamentals and in specific areas such as tank gunnery, armor tactics, communications and maintenance. As the armored force grew and the U.S. entered World War II, the school expanded proportionately. From an initial cadre of 155 officers and 1,458 enlisted men in October 1940, the school grew to more than 700 officers and 3,500 enlisted men by May 1943.... The Armored Force School, at the peak of its operation during the war, operated on two daily shifts to satisfy the demand for qualified armor soldiers. The training reflected the rapid evolution of armored warfare doctrine, which changed constantly in the face of battle experience and in the alterations to the force structure and its tables of organization and equipment" - Gary Kempf, "The History of Fort Knox."