Jason Beardsley is senior coalitions advisor for Concerned Veterans for America and director of veterans initiatives for Stand Together, and has worked for both the Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs. Jason is a veteran of the Army and Navy with extensive combat experience. AMAC Foundation is honored to have Jason as an FVOP Collaborator.
Happy Birthday to the US Army
Join us in reflecting upon the profound symbolism within the United States Army emblem—a tapestry that weaves together the stories of valor, sacrifice, and duty. In its presence, a profound silence descends upon us, invoking a deep sense of reverence and gratitude. It compels us to reflect on the immeasurable sacrifices made by the brave men and women who have worn the uniform, reminding us of the unwavering commitment that beats within their hearts. Their noble spirit, etched into the very fabric of the emblem, moves us to stand in awe and honor their legacy.
A brief expose on the profound symbolism behind the United States Army emblem and rich tapestry of bravery and devotion in defense of liberty.
While countless individuals have fought under the US Army flag, few have truly paused in awe to contemplate the significance of the emblem, which traces its lineage back to the original War Office Seal. It transports us into a world where valor and honor converge. The symbolic flag tells a tale woven with symbols that embody the essence of our nation’s defenders—a story that invites us to reflect on the enduring legacy of those who have dedicated their lives to preserving our freedom.
US Army Flag
At the heart of this emblem rests a Roman cuirass, a symbol of unwavering strength and unwavering defense. Engraved with the Roman numerals “MDCCLXXVIII,” it bears witness to the birth of the Continental Army in 1775, marking the beginning of a proud lineage that has safeguarded our nation’s destiny.
Upon the cuirass, an unsheathed sword reaches skyward, a forceful representation of the Army’s readiness to confront any challenge that comes its way. Its gleaming blade holds the courage and vigilance of our soldiers, embodying their unwavering commitment to protect the core values that define our great nation. Perched atop the sword’s point, the iconic Phrygian cap emerges, a timeless symbol of liberty unfurled.
On either side of the cuirass, remarkable artifacts from the past serve as enduring links between history and the present. To the left, a half-pike known as an espontoon and a musket with a fixed bayonet intersect in a powerful display, epitomizing the Army’s command and defensive prowess. The original version of the emblem featured undisclosed designs on the flanking flags, fluttering valiantly to mirror the indomitable spirit and valor of soldiers throughout the ages. In the modern rendition, the American flag proudly graces the left side of the cuirass, while an undisclosed flag flies on the right, symbolizing the seamless connection between the Army’s enduring legacy and its ongoing mission.
But the story within the emblem runs deeper still, unveiling a tableau of power and precision. A cannon barrel rises defiantly behind the cuirass, serving as a visual testament to the Army’s unwavering firepower and the battles fought with unyielding resolve. Beside it lies a mound of cannonballs, a resounding tribute to the strength and precision that have safeguarded our nation’s sovereignty. Adjacent to them, a mortar on a carriage stands tall, symbolizing the Army’s tactical readiness, while two bomb shells represent its unwavering commitment to defend and strike with precision.
Crowning this emblem, a resolute rattlesnake grasps a scroll in its jaws, bearing the words “This We’ll Defend.” This powerful image harks back to the days of the American Revolution, when the rattlesnake became a symbol of resilience and unyielding determination. It encapsulates the Army’s unwavering dedication to safeguarding our nation’s ideals and liberties—a commitment that resonates through the ages.
History Reminds Us
As we contemplate the United States Army emblem, it serves as a reminder of the countless brave men and women who have donned the uniform, standing tall with unwavering commitment and selflessness. Their loyalty, vigilance, courage, and honor find their essence within this emblem—a powerful visual representation of their sacrifice and the triumphs they have achieved in service to our great nation.
Across the annals of history, the Phrygian cap, a timeless symbol of freedom, has found its place within the narrative of our nation. From the Senate seal to various emblems, it stands as a silent sentinel of the values we hold dear.
Within the United States Army emblem, it signifies the Army’s unwavering dedication to preserving liberty and defending the American way of life.