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Army - National Guard (U.S.)

Last modified: 2023-04-15 by rick wyatt
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Overview

The United States National Guard is part of the reserve components of the United States Army and the United States Air Force. It is a military reserve force composed of National Guard military members or units of each state and the territories of Guam, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia, for a total of 54 separate organizations. All members of the National Guard of the United States are also members of the Organized Militia of the United States as defined by 10 U.S.C. 246. National Guard units are under the dual control of the state governments and the federal government.

The official flags for each of the 54 Joint Force Headquarters of state and territorial National Guards are dark blue with a yellow fringe, and with the shoulder sleeve insignia for that state in the center (Per AR 840-10)

The patches for each state National Guard headquarters are here:
https://tioh.army.mil/Catalog/HeraldryList.aspx?CategoryId=247&grp=2&menu=Uniformed%2Services

Dark blue is the distinguishing color of the National Guard Bureau. The National Guard Bureau is a joint bureau of the Departments of Army and the Air Force.

Army National Guard (ARNG) general officers not in federal service have these rank flags:
https://tioh.army.mil/Catalog/Heraldry.aspx?HeraldryId=16189&CategoryId=9357&grp=2&menu=Uniformed%20Services

ARNG general officers in federal service have the same flags as other Army general officers.

Air National Guard general officers have the same flags as Air Force general officers.

Congress has not yet determined if there will be a Space National Guard to support the US Space Force.

Flags for the chief and vice chief of the National Guard Bureau are here:
https://tioh.army.mil/Catalog/HeraldryMulti.aspx?CategoryId=9354&grp=2&menu=Uniformed%20Services

Army National Guard flag:
https://www.oatesflag.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Army-National-Guard-Flag-Fringe.jpg

Air National Guard flag:
https://www.oatesflag.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Air-National-Guard-Flag.jpg
Dave Fowler, 23 August 2020

 

National Guard Flag

[United States National Guard] image by Valentin Poposki, 23 August 2020

This is a logo flag.
Dave Fowler, 23 August 2020


General Officers' Flags

The basic design is shown in AR 840-10 [usa98], page 16, figures 3-26 through 3-28, the text quoted below:

3-37. General officers of the Army National Guard whose ranks are not federally recognized

These general officers flags will be prescribed by the State concerned, providing the design is not similar to or in conflict with flags prescribed in this regulation. (See NGR 725-1.) To avoid conflict and to provide a recognized State system, the Department of the Army has suitable flag designs that may be used if desired by the States. The flag designs, adaptable to each State, have a national flag blue background with the crest of the individual State Army National Guard organization in proper colors. The fringe is yellow.

Individual flag designs are as follows:

a. Lieutenant General. The crest is vertically centered below one white five-pointed star. Two white five-pointed stars are horizontally centered on the flag. (See fig 3-26.)

b. Major General. The crest is centered between two white five-pointed stars horizontally centered on the flag. (See fig 3-27.)

c. Brigadier General. The crest is vertically centered below one white five-pointed star. (See fig 3-28.)
Submitted by Phil Nelson, 22 February 2000

State National Guard Flags

Construction sheets: State National Guards (General Officers)
Created 15 December 1999
The individual 54 state National Guard crests are centered on the flags, and can be found at:
https://tioh.army.mil/Catalog/HeraldryList.aspx?CategoryId=9154&grp=2&menu=Uniformed%20Services

Dave Fowler, 8 July 2022

Alabama

[United States National Guard] image by Valentin Poposki, 23 August 2020

This is a logo flag.
Dave Fowler, 23 August 2020

Georgia

[United States National Guard] image by Valentin Poposki, 23 August 2020

This is a logo flag.
Dave Fowler, 23 August 2020

Minnesota

[United States National Guard] image by Valentin Poposki, 23 August 2020

This is a logo flag.
Dave Fowler, 23 August 2020

Virginia

[United States National Guard] image by Valentin Poposki, 23 August 2020

This is a logo flag.
Dave Fowler, 23 August 2020

From https://www.military.com/daily-news/2023/03/16/these-southern-national-guard-units-toss-confederate-battle-streamers.html?ESRC=eb_230317.nl:

[note: U.S. federal military "reserve" units (Army, Navy, Air Force) are aligned to support active-duty federal military forces. State military "National Guard" units are governed by state governors to assist in state emergencies: such as weather-disaster-relief (tornadoes, floods, riots, etc.), but can be "federalized" to support federal military actions overseas.]

These Southern National Guard Units to Toss Confederate Battle Streamers

Contemporary [state] National Guard units that were a part of the Confederacy and waged war against the United States during the Civil War [1861-1865] will have to relinquish their [Confederate-related] battle streamers from guidons this year, according to an internal http://www.military.com/army memo reviewed by Military.com.

The move is consistent with recommendations from the congressionally mandated Naming Commission, a committee formed to examine the Pentagon's references honoring rebels who seceded from the United States, largely to preserve and expand slave labor.

At least 48 units from mostly southern National Guard units have been directed to remove Confederate battle streamers from their units' guidons, which serve as ceremonial flags often held by a soldier in a formation. Streamers hang on top of a unit's flag and are awarded for participating in wars or specific battles ranging from the colonial era to the Global War on Terrorism. In total, there are 491 streamers set to be removed.

Units with the most Confederate combat decorations include the 116th Infantry Regiment and 183rd Cavalry Regiment of the Virginia National Guard, which made up part of the so-called Stonewall Brigade, a large military formation commanded by Confederate Gen. Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson. Following battlefield success in the early days of the Civil War, most of Jackson's troops died throughout the conflict, with only about 200 of the 6,000 original troops surviving the war.

But the Naming Commission did not recommend all Confederate references be scrapped from the military. Units that are part of the 29th Infantry Division, known best for its legendary battle storming the beaches of Nazi-occupied France in World War II, wear a patch that includes a blue-and-gray yin and yang. The patch was introduced during World War I to symbolize the merger of units with old Confederate and Union ties who would fight together in Europe. Military.com was first to report that the division will https://www.military.com/daily-news/2022/08/02/29th-infantry-division-keeps-historic-patch-despite-nod-service-confederate-army.html.

In October [2022], [U.S.] Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin backed the commission's recommendation to rename nine Army bases that currently honor Confederates, including http://www.military.com/base-guide/fort-polk, Louisiana, which will be named after Sgt. William Johnson, a Black http://www.military.com/benefits/veteran-benefits/the-medal-of-honor.html recipient. http://www.military.com/base-guide/fort-bragg, North Carolina, home to the Army's Airborne and special forces, is the only base that will not be renamed after a major military figure; instead, it will be renamed Fort Liberty. Those name changes are expected to be finalized within a year.

Here are the units that are being directed to remove Confederate battle streamers:
Alabama Army National Guard: 44 streamers from 4 units.
1. HHD, 31st Chemical Brigade (Tuscaloosa, AL): 10.
2. HHD, 161st Medical Battalion (Mobile, AL): 11.
3. 167th Infantry Regiment (Talladega, AL): 13.
4. 711th Support Battalion (Mobile, AL): 10

Georgia Army National Guard: 69 streamers from 13 units.
1. HHC, 48th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Macon, GA): 5.
2. 116th Army Band (Marietta, GA): 2.
3. 118th Field Artillery Regiment (Savannah, GA): 6.
4. HQ Battery, 1st Battalion, 118th Field Artillery Regiment (Savannah, GA): 7.
5. Battery A, 1st Battalion, 118th Field Artillery Regiment (Springfield, GA): 1.
6. Battery B, 1st Battalion, 118th Field Artillery Regiment (Brunswick, GA): 2.
7. 121st Infantry Regiment (Winder, GA): 5.
8. HHC, 148th Support Battalion (Macon, GA): 10.
9. Company C, 148th Support Battalion (Macon, GA): 5.
10. Company G, 148th Support Battalion (Winder, GA): 9.
11. 214th Field Artillery Regiment (Elberton, GA): 5.
12. HHC, 878th Engineer Battalion (Augusta, GA): 7.
13. 1788th Quartermaster Company (Hinesville, GA): 5.

Kentucky Army National Guard: 46 streamers from 4 units.
1. 138th Field Artillery Regiment (Lexington, KY): 7.
2. 149th Infantry Regiment (Barbourville, KY): 13.
3. 201st Engineer Battalion (Ashland, KY): 13.
4. 623d Field Artillery Regiment (Glasgow, KY): 13.

Louisiana Army National Guard: 54 streamers from 3 units.
1. 141st Field Artillery Regiment (New Orleans, LA): 24.
2. 156th Infantry Regiment (Abbeville, LA): 17.
3. 769th Engineer Battalion (Baton Rouge, LA): 13.

Maryland Army National Guard: 7 streamers from 1 unit.
1. 175th Infantry Regiment (Dundalk, MD): 7.

Mississippi Army National Guard: 10 streamers from 1 unit.
1. 155th Infantry Regiment (McComb, MS): 10.

Missouri Army National Guard: 9 streamers from 1 unit.
1. Company B, 1st Battalion, 138th Infantry Regiment (Bridgeton, MO): 9.

North Carolina Army National Guard: 7 streamers from 1 unit.
1. 120th Infantry Regiment (Wilmington, NC): 7.

South Carolina Army National Guard: 54 streamers from 5 units.
1. 118th Infantry Regiment (Mount Pleasant, SC): 14.
2. 132d Military Police Company (Columbia, SC): 3.
3. 263d Air Defense Artillery Regiment (Anderson, SC): 17.
4. 679th Engineer Detachment (Chester, SC): 10.
5. 751st Support Battalion (Eastover, SC): 10.

Texas Army National Guard: 31 streamers from 2 units.
1. 141st Infantry Regiment (San Antonio, TX): 26.
2. 143d Infantry Regiment (Fort Worth, TX): 5.

Virginia Army National Guard: 156 streamers from 12 units.
1. 111th Field Artillery Regiment (Norfolk, VA): 13.
2. Battery A, 1st Battalion, 111th Field Artillery Regiment (Hanover, VA): 5.
3. Battery B, 1st Battalion, 111th Field Artillery Regiment (Norfolk, VA): 1.
4. HHC, 116th Brigade Combat Team, 29th Infantry Division (Staunton, VA): 18.
5. 116th Infantry Regiment (Lynchburg, VA): 19.
6. 180th Engineer Company (Powhatan, VA): 20.
7. HHT, 2d Squadron, 183d Cavalry Regiment (Portsmouth, VA): 12.
8. 224th Aviation Regiment (Sandston, VA): 18.
9. 229th Engineer Battalion (Fredericksburg, VA): 11.
10. 229th Military Police Company (Manassas, VA): 14.
11. 276th Engineer Battalion (Petersburg, VA): 14.
12. HHC, 429th Support Battalion (Danville, VA): 11.

West Virginia Army National Guard: 4 streamers from 1 unit.
1. 201st Field Artillery Regiment (Fairmont, WV): 4.

Steve Beynon (on Twitter @StevenBeynon), 17 March 2023

The federal Civil War streamers are blue over gray and the Confederate streamers are gray over blue. Occasionally names of battles would vary from one side to the other, but otherwise, they were fairly identical in design.

Another change is in the Army practice of 'special designations,' in which units can have a special name inserted after the numerical name as part of their official designations. For example, 1st Armored Division (Old Ironsides).

A number of southern Army National Guard units with confederate ties lost those special designations last week. For example:

31st Chemical Brigade (Dixie)
155th Armored Brigade Combat Team (Dixie Thunder)

These units lose those parentheticals, though they can apply for a new name.

Dave Martucci, 17 March 2023

It should be noted that "state" National Guard units are equipped and trained and have federal mission sets that allow those units to (in theory) be used interchangeably with active component and federal reserve units, and all three components make up the entirety of the Army and the Air Force (Congress is currently debating a Space National Guard). National Guard units do have combat missions that they are used for, and are not limited to civil missions.
Dave Fowler, 17 March 3