The 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard)
The 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment, traditionally known as “The Old Guard,” is the oldest active-duty infantry unit in the Army, serving our nation since 1784. The Old Guard is charged with the unique mission of providing security for the nation's capital, serving as the U.S. Army's official ceremonial unit, and performing tactical infantry missions.
As the U.S. Army’s official ceremonial unit and escort to the President, The Old Guard represents the U.S. Army and the nation in official arrival ceremonies at the White House and the Pentagon for visiting heads of state and other foreign dignitaries.
Soldiers of the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment also maintain a faithful 24-hour vigil at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
The Old Guard continuously prepares for its security role and the possible deployment of its Soldiers by conducting a year-round tactical training program culminating in a rigorous evaluation of unit tactical proficiency.
The Caisson Platoon of the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) is the only unit of its kind remaining in the United States Army. Its name is derived from the horse drawn
wagons once used by the American Expeditionary Force to supply guns, ammunition and spare parts to the battle lines. Today these same caissons are used to transport flag draped caskets to their final resting places in Arlington National Cemetery.
In addition to their duties in military funerals, the Caisson Platoon participates in numerous historic pageants performed by the Old Guard, among these are “Spirit of America,” and “Twilight Tattoo.” The Caisson Platoon has been honored by inclusion in Presidential Inaugural Parades, and has participated in various other historic events in the greater Military District of Washington, D.C.
Continental Color Guard
The Continental Color Guard’s heritage traces back to the early days of our nation and is tradition in the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard).
The team carries the National Color in the place of honor on the right, the United States Army flag directly to its left, and the 3d Infantry’s regimental color on the far left.
The uniforms worn by the Color Team are replicas of the 1784-style infantry uniforms worn by The Old Guard’s predecessor, the First American Regiment. The pattern of the uniform for wear by all infantry units of the Continental Army was approved by General George Washington in 1782.
The Continental Color Guard displays the Colors in numerous parades and ceremonies throughout the year. The team has performed in such notable events as presidential inaugurals, the Olympics, and the Super Bowl.
Presidential Salute Guns Battery
The Presidential Salute Guns Battery, also known as the Salute Guns Platoon, renders honors to foreign dignitaries and heads of state visiting the White House, the Pentagon and other places in the area. It also fires the final salute during funerals for flag officers at Arlington National Cemetery. Not only does this platoon provide ceremonial support, but also the mortar men provide 75-mm mortar indirect-fire support during the tactical training of 3d Infantry units. During ceremonies, the platoon fires 3-inch antitank guns mounted on a 105-mm howitzer chassis. It is the only unit of its kind in the Army.
The U.S. Army's Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps
The U.S. Army’s Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps is the only unit of its kind in the United States Armed Forces and is charged with maintaining some of America’s oldest military music traditions. Their crisp drill and early American music represent the dedication, discipline and precision of the United States Army to our Nation and the world.
Through their unique and thrilling performances, The Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps maintains the “Spirit of ‘76” in today’s Army and our nation – a proud history that began with the musicians of the Continental Army and continues to this day!
The U.S. Army Drill Team
The U.S. Army Drill Team, one of the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment's (The Old Guard) renowned specialty units, has earned international acclaim through its breathtaking routines with bayonet-tipped 1903 Springfield rifles.
Organized to support The Old Guard's ceremonial commitments, the Drill Team has thrilled millions of youngsters and proud Americans for more than 60 years with their daring and complex performances. When not performing for the President or visiting dignitaries and heads of state, the Drill Team travels extensively supporting Army recruitment, acting as "good-will ambassadors" for the Army and participating in major military and civic functions.
The U.S. Army Band "Pershing's Own"
The U.S. Army Band, “Pershing’s Own” has been the premier musical organization of the U.S. Army since 1922. The musicians of “Pershing’s Own” render musical honors for foreign dignitaries, heads of state, diplomats and high-ranking military officers. “Pershing’s Own” is the greatest non-threatening force in today’s Army and its duty is to bring about a patriotic feeling of honor and pride for the United States and for those serving to protect its way of life.
U.S. Army Band Downrange
Downrange is the premier vocal entertainment ensemble of the U.S. Army, capable of performing popular music from the 1940s to the present. Each year they entertain thousands of people around the country. With its unique and ever-changing repertoire, Downrange directs the spotlight on this dynamic group of active-duty musicians—talented vocalists and a powerful rhythm section. Downrange maintains the highest standards of excellence in musical entertainment and provides an exceptional musical experience.
U.S. Army Blues Jazz Ensemble
In keeping with the tradition of America’s only original art form, jazz, the Army Blues strives to preserve the music of such big band legends as Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Woody Herman, and Stan Kenton. Over the years it has evolved into the premier jazz ensemble of the U.S. Army. As a component of The United States Army Band “Pershing’s Own,” the Army Blues is one of the few remaining professional big bands working today.
U.S. Army Voices
The U.S. Army Voices provide musical support to the nation’s leadership and entertain a wide variety of audiences with choral and patriotic music , from the intimate setting of a State Dinner, to the floor show of international military tattoos and the grand stage of major concert halls around the world.