HISTORY OF SPECIAL TROOPS
The designation of Special Troops has been used in the Army’s divisions since 7 October 1920 when the Army reorganized its divisions based on WWI combat experience in Europe. In-part, the reorganization resulted in the division having six separate companies. They consisted of a tank company, a military police company, a signal company, an ordnance company, a motorcycle company and the division headquarters company. To provide these separate companies administrative support a Headquarters, Special Troops was created. As WWII began the Army again reorganized its divisions moving from a square configuration of two infantry brigades of two regiments each, to a triangular concept of three infantry regiments. In the process Headquarters, Special Troops was eliminated. However a 1943 review of the infantry division organization after early combat experience led to a restoration of Headquarters, Special Troops to furnish administrative support for the division headquarters company, ordnance company, quartermaster company, signal company, military police platoon and division band. In 1949 a post-WWII reorganization of the Army’s infantry divisions resulted in the inactivation of Headquarters, Special Troops. The Army’s decision to move from a division-centric to a brigade-centric organization resulted in a modular reorganization of the Army’s divisions beginning in 2004. A major component of the reorganization was the inactivations of the division’s engineer, military intelligence and signal battalions as well as the military police company. In their stead an engineer company, a military intelligence company and a signal company plus a military police platoon were assigned to each of the infantry and heavy brigade combat teams. Unlike previous Special Troops configurations these companies are not separate entities receiving only administrative support but rather are assigned as organic elements of the Special Troops Battalion. At the division level a Special Troops Battalion was also constituted to support the increased size of the division headquarters. It consisted of a headquarters and headquarters company, a signal company and the division band. The mission of the battalion was to support the Division Headquarters. Upon the activation of the division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion the division Special Troops Battalion was inactivated on 15 January 2010.