Fort Benning

Fort Benning has been a vital part of the Columbus community for nearly a century. The post moved here from Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in 1918 when Army officials desired a larger site with a climate and terrain better suited to training needs. From its beginning as a small training base, Fort Benning has grown to become one of the largest military installations in the world.

A wide variety of training and weapons testing critical to the nation’s defense has taken place at Fort Benning. The U.S. Army Infantry School, where enlisted soldiers undergo basic training and advanced individual training, has been central to its mission. The U.S. Army Airborne School, or “Jump School,” has trained military parachutists since 1940. The elite U.S. Army Rangers are also trained at Fort Benning. The post’s most recent addition is the U.S. Army Armor School, which combined with the Infantry School to create the U.S. Army Maneuver Center of Excellence in 2011.

  • Dawn Attack, the Infantry School
    ca. 1938
    Museum purchase made possible by the Evelyn S. and H. Wayne Patterson Fund 2012.30.1

    This postcard depicts infantry training exercises at Fort Benning in a typical southwest Georgia landscape of pine trees and sand. Click here for more information

  • Officers’ Club drinking glass
    ca. 1943
    Gift of Janet Kelly Morgan 2012.11.19

    This glass from the Fort Benning Officers’ Club, used by Major Lloyd Kelly, features the insignia of the U.S. Army Infantry. Click here for more information

  • Aerial view of Fort Benning
    December 1941
    Museum purchase 2000.30

    When the United States entered World War II, both the post and nearby Columbus boomed as soldiers, some with their families, arrived for training. Click here for more information

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