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Train for the Siege of Boston, 1775
Siege train arriving before Adrianople, Nov. 3, 1912

In military contexts, a train is the logistical transport elements accompanying a military force. Often called a supply train or baggage train, it has the job of providing materiel for their associated combat forces when in the field. When focused on provision of artillery and ammunition it may be termed an artillery train; for sieges, requiring siege engines in addition, the required transport was called a siege train. These military terms predate, and do not imply a railway train, though railways are often employed for modern logistics, and can include armoured trains.

For armies, this historically usually referred to forces employing wagons, horses, mules, oxen, camels, or even elephants. These can still be useful where difficult weather or topography limit use of railways, trucks, sealift, or airlift.

The United States Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms defined 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]

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ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ US DOD (1987). The Military Dictionary. DIANE Publishing. p. 376. ISBN 0941375102.