The History and Roles of the National Guard

National Guard celebrates birthday
A cake for the National Guard's 384th birthday sits on a table at the 117th Air Refueling Wing dining facility, Sumpter Smith JNGB, Alabama, Dec. 13, 2020. (Airman 1st Class Nicholas Faddis/Alabama Air National Guard)

The Army National Guard is an elite group of warriors who dedicate a portion of their time to serving their nation. Each state has its own Guard, as required by the Constitution; in fact, it is the only branch of the military whose existence actually is required by the Constitution.

The Army National Guard began on Dec. 13, 1636, when the Massachusetts Bay Colony organized three militia regiments to defend against the growing threat of the Pequot Indians. Today, the Army National Guard continues its historic mission of providing defense for the nation.

Since 1636, the Guard has brought glory and honor upon itself and its soldiers through quiet and selfless service. Do you think you have what it takes to be a member of this select group?

In the Guard, you become a soldier. What does it mean to be a soldier? It's being a part of a noble tradition of service extending back almost 400 years. It means you become a member of the best trained, best equipped and most respected military force in history. It means you will make a difference.

Interested in Joining the Military?

We can put you in touch with recruiters from the different military branches. Learn about the benefits of serving your country, paying for school, military career paths and more: sign up now and hear from a recruiter near you.

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