Train (military)

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French train horses crossing a river on their way to Verdun.

In military contexts a train can refer to logistic elements of a force or organisation. In this context the term train usually does not mean a railway train.

Historically and for land forces, this usually referred to troops that are endowed with horses. They can still be of use nowadays to transport goods under difficult circumstances (for instance: weather, topography) where motorised ground troops or aerial forces can not be deployed.

The US DOD Dictionary of Military Terms defines the term train as:

A service force or group of service elements that provides logistic support, e.g., an organization of naval auxiliary ships or merchant ships or merchant ships attached to a fleet for this purpose; similarly, the vehicles and operating personnel that furnish supply, evacuation, and maintenance services to a land unit.[1][dead link]


  1. ^ Defence Technical Information Centre DOD Dictionary of Military Terms, (DTIC DOD Dictionary)