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Fort Benning Army Base on map
Fort Benning Army Base in Columbus, GA Georgia Military Bases
Fort Benning is a U.S. Army base located in Mucoge and Chattahoochee counties near Columbus, Georgia. Covering 182,000 acres in west central Georgia and a small portion of its land in east central Alabama, it bears the moniker of Home of the Infantry. Fort Benning seeks to be “First in training, First in readiness, and First in quality of life.” It comprises a large military community comprised of 120,000 active duty active-duty personnel, family members, reservists, retirees, and civilian employees. Training schools make up a major portion of the base’s current mission and account for much of its historical growth. It provides sites for the U.S. Army Infantry Training School, as well as the U.S. Infantry school, the Airborne School, the School for the Americas as well as the Ranger Training Brigade. In addition to training, the base also houses units of Forces Command, including the 36th Engineer Group, the 3rd Ranger Battalion as well as the 75th Ranger Regiment, and the 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division.
Most of the base is undeveloped and reserved for varieties of military training. Natural and manmade features provide a variety of terrain conducive to the base’s many missions. These include firing ranges, drop zones and landing zones. An average of 20,000 troops training in the field on a daily basis.
Fort Benning’s History
The post was established at Camp Benning in October 1918 to provide basic training for units serving during the First World War. At the request of local community leaders, the base was named after Columbus native Brigadier General Henry L. Benning, who served the Confederacy in the Civil War. He was considered at the time to have been one of the outstanding generals of that conflict. The camp was established on the site of a former plantation and consisted of varied terrain considered ideal for a wide range of military training. With the end of the war, for a time funding for the base dried up, but Fort Benning experienced a construction boom in the 1930s as a result of New Deal projects. A number of buildings constructed at that time by the Civilian Conservation Corps still survive and are in use today. The base received its first permanent tenant in 1934 with the arrival of the infantry school under the command of General George C. Marshall. The bases mission continued to expand, with troop numbers rising due to the arrival of First Infantry Division, the Officer Candidate School, as well as training for airborne troops.
The 2nd Armored Division was formed at Fort Benning in 1940. When the Second World War broke out, the division would first see action in the TORCH landings in North Africa during November 1942. In December 1943, Fort Benning saw the organization of the 555th Parachute Infantry Battalion, an all black unit. While trained for combat, it was retained for stateside duty and put into action fighting fires as smoke jumpers. After World War II, the Fourth Infantry Division, was reorganized and trained at Fort Benning before its commitment to duty with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
The Infantry school at Fort Benning possesses a rich legacy in the well trained officers it has produced, including such notables as Dwight Eisenhower, Omar Bradley, George Patton, George C. Marshall, and Colin Powell. In addition to the Infantry school, the base houses an Airborne School, Ranger School, and the 20th Infantry regiment which provides training for the Bradley Fighting Vehicle.
The School of the Americas was transferred to Fort Benning in 1984 and has provided training for over 61,000 soldiers and policemen in Latin America. Due to ongoing allegations that a number of graduates for the school engaged in human rights abuses, controversy surrounded the school leading to its reorganization and renaming as the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation in 2001.
There are four main areas (cantonments) at Fort Benning:
Main Post provides housing for a variety of units like the 36th Engineer Group, the 988th Military Policy Company, the 43rd Engineer Battalion, as well as the 29th Infantry regiment. Also at Main Base are the Officer Candidate School, the Airborne School and the Non-Commissioned Officers Academy. In addition, a memorial stands at Main Post for the Rangers.
Kelley Hill provides a home for the 3rd Heavy Advise and Assist Brigade Combat Team of the 3rd Infantry Division (Mechanized).
Sand Hill houses the Infantry Training Brigade and the Basic Combat Training Brigade as well as the 30th AG Reception Battalion.
Harmony Church it the home of the 1/29th Infantry regiment (training support for Strykers and Bradley Fighting Vehicles), the 2/29 Infantry regiment Sniper School, the first phase of Ranger School, and the United states army Reconnaissance and Surveillance Leaders Course. After changes made under the Base Realignment and Closure Commission in 2005, it will also be the new home of the US Army Armor School.
On-base housing includes a wide range of modern, up-to-date accommodations available for personnel with families. A wide range of services are available for benefit and enjoyment of base personnel and their dependents.
Fort Benning sits at the heart of what is called the Tri-Community. In addition to Fort Benning itself, this includes the supportive communities of Columbus, Georgia and Phenix city, Alabama. In addition, the major metropolitan areas of Alabama’s capital of Montgomery, Georgia’s of Atlanta are both only an hour and a half’s drive away from base. Florida’s Gulf Coast is also only a few hour’s drive away from Fort Benning as are the mountains of northern Georgia. Columbus itself is a growing community of more than 275,000 people in its metropolitan area. Columbus is a charming city which has managed to preserve its old charm which enjoying the conveniences of a modern urban environment. Like Columbus, Phenix city, Alabama is a neighbor of Fort Benning. Located on the Chattahoochee River, the city boasts many early homes form the 1800’s preserved in the 30-block Columbus Historic District. A wide range of cultural opportunities are available in the Tri-Community area including museums, the Columbus Symphony, and productions at the Springer Opera House.
Fort Benning Facts
Location: Columbus in Muscogee and Chattahoochee counties in Georgia
Website: Visit Fort Benning Website ›
Phone: (706) 545-2011
The Fort Benning military facility located in South, Georgia obtained its name from Henry Lewis Benning, a Civil War General who was also a reputable Columbus citizen. The establishment was introduced in 1918 and is well known for training over 108, 000 troops on an annual basis. The installation is worthy of its performances in accommodating a vast number of operatives on its land mass of 182, 000 acres, that is separated into four sections, which includes Kelley Hill, Main Post, Harmony Church and Sand Hill.
The facility accommodates over 120, 000 residents of composition, which includes reservists, military retirees, soldiers, contractors, civilians and family members. The installation is also known as one of the largest military sub-division in the United States with a number 6 rank and 3rd in rank for hosting the largest operatives in endurance. Only a mere 7 percent on the organization lies in the state of Alabama while the remaining 97 percent, is situated in the state of Georgia. Residents located on property, utilize all services, live and work on Fort Benning which offers a variety of housing sites.
The Forces Command and Training along with the Doctrine Command is in charge of all operations for the Fort Benning military installation. This military base located in Columbus Georgia, enforces the ability to deploy military operatives by road, air and rail.
Fort Benning is the primary host for the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation, Armor School, the 75th Ranger Regiment, United States Army Maneuver Center, 3rd Infantry Division, Infantry Training Center, the 14th Combat Support Hospital and the 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team.
This military base along with the Maneuver Center avails skilled, War leaders, Adaptive and Soldiers equipped professionally to engage in the field of battle. The facility is efficient in providing World class satisfaction to Army families and soldiers with future developments that are essential.
Fort Benning is located in an area commonly known as the “Tri-Community”, comprised of Columbus, Fort Benning, Georgia, and Phenix City, Alabama. Columbus, known as Georgia’s third-largest city, is a growing community of 250,000. Besides being the home of the Best Army Installation in the World, Fort Benning, Columbus is the corporate headquarters of many leading companies such as AFLAC Insurance. Average family income is $36,405. The stunning Florida gulf shores and picturesque Blue Ridge Mountains are only a few hours drive from Fort Benning.
Fort Benning was established in 1918, is named after Confederate General Henry L. Benning, who had lived in Columbus. The installation covers 182,000 acres. Since 1918 For Benning has been an integral part of training our Army. Today, Fort Benning is the Maneuver Center of Excellence and home of the Armor and Infantry. All Armor and Infantry Soldiers start their army journey here.
Fort Benning and the Maneuver Center of Excellence provides trained, agile, adaptive and ready Soldiers and leaders for an Army at war, while developing future requirements for the individual Soldier and the Maneuver Force, and providing a world class quality of life for our Soldiers and Army families.
Fort Benning population has the following: Military – Active Duty 27,436; Support Reserve Components 6,639; and Retired 13,248. Dependents – On-Post Active Duty 7,268; Off-Post Active Duty 14,146; and Off-Post Retired 30,478. Civilian Employees – DoD Appropriated 3,250; Non-appropriated, AAFES, Contract, and other 5,162. Total Fort Benning Population is 107,627.
The Fort Benning Shuttle Bus operates Monday thru Saturday except on Federal Holidays. The Shuttle Bus stops at established Bus stops only. These stops are well marked and conveniently located throughout Fort Benning. For more information on times and locations please call 706-544-4516.
To initiate the Fort Benning Sponsorship Program it is essential that Soldiers complete the DA Form 5434 during their reassignment processing at their last duty station. The DA Form 5434 advises the command of any special needs and support mechanisms that the Total Army Sponsorship Program must muster to help the Soldier and his family. The completed DA Form 5434 should be sent to: Adjutant General/Military Personnel, Enlisted Strength Management Branch, Fort Benning, GA 31905. All military personnel are required to sign-in at Installation Replacement, Building 2607, Soldiers’ Plaza, 706-545-3608/4577 for in-processing.
If a DA Form 5434 is not completed, then a reactionary sponsor will be appointed after the arrival of the Soldier.
Soldiers traveling on official orders (PCS/TDY) have priority and may make reservations in advance. Travelers who are not on official orders may make reservations 45 days in advance on a space available basis. Room rates range from $36 to $66 per night and may accommodate single and double guest rooms. Check-in times are 2:00 – 6:00 p.m. unless reservation is guaranteed with a credit card for late arrival. After 6:00 p.m. vacant rooms are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Check-out time is 11:00 a.m. Continental breakfast provided. Requests for reservations and further assistance can be made by telephone at FREE 706-689-0067 ext. 2800 or ext. 2538. Visit us in person at Olson Hall Bldg. 399 on post. When making your reservations, please inform the reservation clerk if you have special needs such as cribs, etc.
The Army Community Service (ACS) Relocation Program and Lending Closet are located at 7117 Baltzell Ave. Bldg 7, the hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm. You may call for directions or for more information at 706-545-4485. Digital Welcome Packets are available, to include maps and information for on-post and community programs/services are available. There is a dedicated Internet station for use by transitioning families.
The Relocation Readiness Program offers the Newcomers Orientation every Wednesday and a bus tour the third Thursday of each month, this is a great way to see various points of interest. On Post Organizations and Services are there to provide you with the most current services and programs available. Lending Closet has a variety of items to lend while you wait for your household goods to arrive. For more information on what is available and documentation needed to use the lending closet please call 706-545-4485.
Critical Installation Information
Access to the installation is controlled through vehicle checkpoints. All vehicles will be stop at the gates. Drivers and passengers should be prepared to present identification. Children 15 and younger are exempt.
Frequently Called Numbers on Base
Base Operator: 706-545-2011
Army Community Service: 706-545-7517
Welcome/Visitor Center: 706-544-9129
Relocation Assistant: 706-545-4485
Housing Referral: 706-545-3921
Housing Office: 706-545-2990
Temporary Lodging Reservations: 706-689-0067 ext. 2800 or ext. 2538
Child Care: 706-545-3732