The Average American Soldier in the
Spanish American War

By Patrick McSherry


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General:

Below is a comparison of four basic characteristics of soldiers from different time periods.



Civil War
(1864)
Spanish
American
War
(1898)
World
War One
(1919)
World
War
Two
(1946)
1984
Height (in.)
67.2
67.59
67.7
68.4
68.6
Weight (lbs)
141.4
147.07
144.9
154.8
166.8
Chest (in.)
34.5
37.38
34.9
36.4
35.5
Age
25.7
27.6
24.9
24.3
26.3

Notes:

1.    The date listed indicates the dates when the data was taken. For World Wars One and Two, the data comes from the year following the war.
2.    The 1864 data is based on measurements from 23,624 soldiers.
3.    Spanish American War data was based on measurements from 9,226 soldiers.
4.    The 1919 data was based on measurements from 99,449 soldiers
5.    The 1946 data was based on measurements from 85,000 soldiers.
6.    The 1984 data was based on measurements from 869 soldiers.


Bibliography:

Clerk of the Joint Committee on Printing, The Abridgement: Message from the President of the United States to the Two Houses of Congress. (Washington DC: Government Printing Office, 1899) Vol I,  578. (Spanish American War Data).

Marriott, BM, Grumstrup-Scott, J., Ed., Body Composition and Physical Performance: Origins of the Army Standards. Institue of Medicine (US) Committee on Military Nutrition Research (Washington DC: National Academies Press, 1990). Table 3-1 "Comparison of Some Anthropometric Characteristcs of Male Soldiers n 1864, 1919, 1946 and 1984.


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