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Adna R. Chaffee, Jr.
MG Adna R. Chaffee, Jr.
Born (1884-09-23)September 23, 1884
Died August 22, 1941(1941-08-22) (aged 56)
Place of birth Junction City, Kansas
Place of death Boston, Massachusetts
Place of burial Arlington National Cemetery
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Department of the Army Seal.svg United States Army
Years of service 1906–1941
Rank US-O8 insignia.svg Major General
Commands held 7th Cavalry Brigade (Mechanized)
1st Cavalry Division
Battles/wars

World War I

Awards Distinguished Service Medal (2)
Relations General Adna Chaffee (father)

Adna Romanza Chaffee, Jr. (September 23, 1884 – August 22, 1941) was a major general in the United States Army, called the "Father of the Armored Force" for his role in developing the U.S. Army's tank forces.

Early years[edit | edit source]

Adna Chaffee, Jr. was the son of Lieutenant General Adna R. Chaffee, Sr.. Born in Junction City, Kansas on September 23, 1884, he was commissioned a Lieutenant of Cavalry in 1906 after graduating from the United States Military Academy, and won recognition as the "Army's finest horseman."

Career[edit | edit source]

In World War I, he was an Infantry Major with the IV Corps during the Battle of Saint-Mihiel. As a Colonel, he later served with the III Corps throughout the Meuse-Argonne Offensive.

Following the war, he returned to his Regular Army rank of Captain of Cavalry and became an instructor at the General Staff School and the Army School of the Line at Fort Leavenworth. During the 1920s, he helped develop the armor concepts and doctrine of the future. He predicted in 1927 that mechanized armies would dominate the next war and assisted in the first program for the development of a U.S. Army armored force. Assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division in 1931, he continued to develop and experiment with armored forces, thus becoming the leading American advocate of mechanized warfare.

In 1938, he assumed command of the reorganized 7th Cavalry Brigade (Mechanized), the Army's only armored force. Chaffee battled continuously during the prewar years for suitable equipment and for establishment of armored divisions. With the collapse of the French Army in June 1940, Chaffee's 1927 predictions of the importance of armored forces in modern warfare were confirmed.

Chaffee died of cancer on August 22, 1941, in Boston, Massachusetts.

Legacy[edit | edit source]

The M24 Chaffee light tank was later named after him.

Fort Chaffee, Arkansas, near Fort Smith, Arkansas, was named in his honor.

External links[edit | edit source]

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