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Troop: Wikis


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K Troop, 9th Cavalry Regiment, Buffalo Soldiers of the United States Army, in the late nineteenth century

A troop is a military unit, originally a small force of cavalry, subordinate to a squadron and headed by the troop leader. A cavalry soldier of private rank is called a trooper (abbreviated Tpr., not to be confused with trouper).

A related sense of the term troop refers to soldiers collectively, as in the troops; see Troop (disambiguation).

Troops in various forces

Today, a troop is defined differently in different armed forces.

In the Australian army a troop is the equivalent of a platoon sized element in units of certain corps, those being:

In addition the Special Air Service Regiment, which is part of the Royal Australian Infantry Corps, also uses the term troop to refer to its platoon size elements. However SASR is the only Royal Australian Infantry unit to use the troop designation. SASR troops are also unusual as they are commanded by a captain - most troop/platoon sized elements are commanded by a Lieutenant. In all cases the organisation which use troop to refer to their platoon size element refer to the company sized element as a squadron and the battalion sized element as a regiment. Privates in the RAAC and SASR are also hold the rank "Trooper" instead of private, this is not the case for any other Corps/Units whose platoon sized elements are called Troops.

Part of a reconnaissance troop of the British 12th Lancers on training manoeuvres, c 1938

In the British Army the definition of a troop varies by corps.

Other army corps do not use the term.

In the Royal Marines, a troop is the equivalent to an army platoon.

In the Canadian Army, a Troop is the equivalent of a platoon within the Armoured, Artillery, Engineer, and Signals branches. Two to four Troops are comprise the main elements of a squadron.

In the United States Army, in the cavalry branch, a troop is the equivalent unit to the infantry company, commanded by a captain and consisting of 3 or 4 platoons, and subordinate to a squadron (battalion). Companies were renamed troops in 1883.[1]

Troops in civilian organizations

In the United States, State Police forces are often regionally divided into Troops. This usage came about from these organizations modeling themselves off the US Army, and especially the older cavalry units. For this same reason the State Police and Highway Patrol personnel of most states are known as "Trooper" rather than "Officer".

In Scouting, a troop is a unit made up of Scouts or Guides from the same locality under a leader.



1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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From LoveToKnow 1911

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