Camp Croft, South Carolina
US Army Infantry Replacement Training Center
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All Infantry Replacements were required to learn basic infantry skills no matter what specialty they were later to be trained in. After this initial training the soldier was further instructed in one of 6 specialties as shown below. The trainee needed to become proficient in all the positions of the platoon or squad to which he had been assigned.
|Heavy Weapons Company|
What's the I.R.T.C.?
"An Infantry Training Replacement Center gives new soldiers 17 weeks of rugged basic training which will then fit you for Infantry combat. It is a hard, exacting training that will bring you up to peak physical condition and give you skills which will enable you to kill the enemy with the least possible danger to yourself. That means first of all proficiency with the powerful M-1 (Garand) Rifle. Once issued to you, it will be your inseparable "buddy" and you will learn to treat it right, for it perhaps will save your life many times.
Basic training includes such elemental things as marching in a squad, platoon and company formations, military courtesy and discipline, health and sanitation under combat conditions, first aid, defense against tank, air and gas attacks - all things every soldier must know. It progresses through map and compass reading, scouting and patrolling, bayonet, gunnery, and hand-to-hand combat to such advanced subjects as squad and platoon battle tactics, attacking with Artillery and heavy weapons support. You will learn to worm your way to an enemy position under snapping live ammunition so you'll become accustomed to it when you get into combat.
Most of you will get this training in a basic rifle company. Some of you will be selected for Infantry training in heavy weapons units that fight with machine guns, mortars, and anti-tank guns. Some, because of civilian training and aptitudes, will learn special jobs such as radio communications, wire stringing, motor transport maintenance, combat intelligence scouting. A small number will learn administrative routine to become clerks, others will get training as combat cooks and bakers, as booby trap and mine field demolition experts.
After 17 weeks you will be transferred to a combat unit which needs a man with the special skills you develop at Fort McClellan - a unit which is learning to work together as a combat team either in the country or overseas." --- from the "Information Hand Book For The Soldier - IRTC, Fort McClellan, Alabama", c1944