The original 28 "Rules of Ranging" are a series of rules and guidelines created by Major Robert Rogers in 1757, during the French and Indian War (1754–63).
The rules were originally written at Rogers Island in the Hudson River near Fort Edward. They were intended to serve as a manual on guerrilla warfare for Rogers' Ranger company, a 600 strong contingent whose members were personally selected by Rogers.
The rules were the result of Rogers' blend of Native American tactics and his own innovative combat techniques, ideas that were considered revolutionary by military standards of the time. Combined with intensive training and live fire exercises, these rules created a mobile, well trained force that was capable of living off the land around it in order to sustain itself for long periods of time.In a novel by Kenneth Roberts, the rules were condensed and now used by our Ranger Regiment to promote our history and warrior ethos.
- Don’t forget nothing.
- Have your musket clean as a whistle, hatchet scoured, sixty rounds powder and ball, and be ready to march at a minute’s warning.
- When you’re on the march, act the way you would if you was sneaking up on a deer. See the enemy first.
- Tell the truth about what you see and what you do. There is an army depending on us for correct information. You can lie all you please when you tell other folks about the Rangers, but don’t never lie to a Ranger or officer.
- Don’t never take a chance you don’t have to.
- When we’re on the march we march single file, far enough apart so one shot can’t go through two men.
- If we strike swamps, or soft ground, we spread out abreast, so it’s hard to track us.
- When we march, we keep moving till dark, so as to give the enemy the least possible chance at us.
- When we camp, half the party stays awake while the other half sleeps.
- If we take prisoners, we keep ’em separate till we have had time to examine them, so they can’t cook up a story between ’em.
- Don’t ever march home the same way. Take a different route so you won’t be ambushed.
- No matter whether we travel in big parties or little ones, each party has to keep a scout 20 yards ahead, 20 yards on each flank, and 20 yards in the rear so the main body can’t be surprised and wiped out.
- Every night you’ll be told where to meet if surrounded by a superior force.
- Don’t sit down to eat without posting sentries.
- Don’t sleep beyond dawn. Dawn’s when the French and Indians attack.
- Don’t cross a river by a regular ford.
- If somebody’s trailing you, make a circle, come back onto your own tracks, and ambush the folks that aim to ambush you.
- Don’t stand up when the enemy’s coming against you. Kneel down, lie down, hide behind a tree.
- Let the enemy come till he’s almost close enough to touch, then let him have it and jump out and finish him up with your hatchet.
Rogers' Rangers & The American Ranger Corps 1755 - 1775 - An inside look at the elite teams that now are the frontline of America’s defense and are increasingly used since 9/11 in the fight against terror. Engage in the stories of Navy Seals, Army Rangers, Delta Force, and the special ops teams specialized in counterterrorism that are filled with brave American heroes heading into combat for freedom.