Military Wiki
United States Army Training Center & Fort Jackson
Columbia, South Carolina
USATC Fort Jackson.png
USATC & Fort Jackson Distinctive Unit Insignia
Coordinates Latitude:
In use 1917–present
Controlled by U.S. Army
Garrison Chaplain Center and School
Soldier Support Institute
Drill Sergeant School
U.S. Army Basic Training Center of Excellence

Fort Jackson is a United States Army installation, which TRADOC operates on for Basic Combat Training (BCT), and is located in Columbia, South Carolina. This installation is named for Andrew Jackson, a United States Army General and President of the United States of America who was born in the border region of North and South Carolina.[1]


Fort Jackson was created in 1917 (as Camp Jackson) as the United States entered World War I. At the conclusion of World War I, Camp Jackson was shut down and the Camp was abandoned 25 April 1922 pursuant to General Orders No. 33, War Department, 27 July 1921. Camp Jackson was reactivated for World War II. At the conclusion of World War II, the post was to have been deactivated by 1950; however, the outbreak of the Korean War caused the post to remain active and it is still functioning in the early 21st Century.

Fort Jackson is the largest and most active Initial Entry Training Center in the U.S. Army, training 50 percent of all soldiers and 70 percent of the women entering the Army each year.[2] Providing the Army with new soldiers is the post's primary mission. Accomplishing this mission means training in excess of 45,000 basic training and advanced individual training soldiers annually. The training is provided by the 165th, 171st, and 193rd Infantry Brigades.

The post has other missions as well. While some military installations have experienced downsizing and closure in past years, Fort Jackson has added several new schools and training institutions since 1995 including the U.S. Army Soldier Support Institute, the Department of Defense Chaplain Center and School, and the Defense Academy for Credibility Assessment. In 2007 the Army consolidated all of its training facilities for Drill Sergeants at Fort Jackson, and in 2009 Command Sergeant Major Teresa King became the first woman to head what is now the sole Drill Sergeant School for the U.S. Army.[3]

The fort encompasses more than 52,000 acres (210 km2) of land, including over 100 ranges and field training sites and 1160 buildings. Other expansion and improvement projects have been completed or are in progress. New projects include a Post Exchange complex, an Emergency Services Center and a Navy Reserve Center. A $4.5 million family water park opened in the summer of 2004 and a new barracks complex and central energy plant costing $59 million have been completed. Soldiers, civilians, retirees and family members make up the Fort Jackson community that continues to grow in numbers and facilities. An additional 14,000 soldiers attend courses at the Soldier Support Institute, Chaplain Center and School and Drill Sergeant School annually. Thirty-six hundred active duty soldiers and their 10,000 family members are assigned to the installation and make this area their home. Fort Jackson employs almost 4,400 civilians and provides services for more than 115,000 retirees and their family members.[citation needed]

Located in the heart of the midlands region of South Carolina, Fort Jackson was incorporated into the city of Columbia in October 1968 and is midway between New York and Miami. Columbia has direct access to three interstate highways, I-20, 26 and I-77, and indirect access to two additional interstates within 100 miles (160 km), I-95 and I-85. Average temperatures in the region range from a high of 90+ °F (32 °C) in July to a low of 34 °F (1 °C) in January. Annual rainfall averages around 48 inches (1,200 mm). The fort has a significant economic impact on the local area. Annual expenditures by Fort Jackson exceed $716.9 million for salaries, utilities, contracts and other services. In addition, over 100,000 family members visit the Midlands area each year to attend basic training graduation activities, using local hotels, restaurants and shopping areas.

In the film Renaissance Man, scenes from the fictional "Fort McClane" were filmed at Fort Jackson.

U.S. Army Chaplain Center and School (USACHCS)

See: Chaplain Corps (United States Army)#Army Chaplain Center and School

U.S. Army Chaplain Museum

See: Chaplain Corps (United States Army)#Museum

Notable former soldiers

  • Ken Berry (1953–1955), dancer, actor, singer, was in the Artillery and Special Services divisions at the close of the Korean War. Rank of corporal.
  • Jim Croce (10 January 1943 – 20 September 1973), singer-songwriter.
  • Leonard Nimoy, actor, writer, film director, poet, musician, and photographer was in the Special Services division and was sergeant over Corporal Ken Berry.
  • Joe Plumeri, Chairman & CEO of Willis Group Holdings, and owner of the Trenton Thunder, was in the Army Reserve at Fort Jackson in 1968.[4]
  • Geoff Ramsey, film producer, actor, photojournalist served in Kuwait


  1. Fort Jackson is often said, erroneously, to be named after Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson, an American General who joined the Confederate Army during the American Civil War.
  2. About Fort Jackson
  3. U.S. Army Names 1st Female Drill Sergeant School Commandant At Fort Jackson, WJBF News, AP article, 9 July 2009. Retrieved 9 December 2009.
  4. Plumeri, Joe (23 June 2002). "The Boss – An Accidental Start". The New York Times. Retrieved 15 July 2010. 
  • Clayton, K. B. History, Annual Supplement: Headquarters, United States Army Training Center and Fort Jackson. Office of the Director of Plans and Training. OCLC 8771088.
  • Department of Defense. 21st Century U.S. Military: U.S. Army Adjutant General School (AG School) at Fort Jackson, plus Army Background Material CD-ROM . Progressive Management, 2005. ISBN 1-4220-0006-0.

External links

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