Military Rank Tables Military Pay Charts Military Housing Pay Military Resources
No Rank

Army Private

E-1 Enlisted Soldier, U.S. Army
(Next) E-2 PV2Army Private Second Class
Private Second Class

Army Ranks » Private RankPVT PayPVT Rank History

How to get promoted to Private History of the Army Private Rank

A Private is a Enlisted Soldier in the United States Army at DoD paygrade E-1.

The military rank of Private is used by militaries across the world. For European countries, and subsequently the United States, the term "Private" derives from the mediaeval concept of "Private Soldiers." These were men who volunteered or were conscripted into service by feudal lords and, later on, rulers of states. In the English language, it made its appearance with the earliest form of the British Army as an established force for the whole of the state. The tradition of privates being the lowest ranking soldiers with only individual responsibilities derives from the idea that private soldiers had no responsibility other than their individual duty to fight.

With the formation of the United States and a standing military as the country became more established, the idea of the lowest ranking soldiers being known as privates was continued and still holds to this day.

Want to learn more? Read about the Army's Private rank on

History of the Army

The Army is the oldest and most senior among the branches. The Army's heritage is traced back to the Revolutionary War, when each State of the Union had its own Army, lended to the command of General George Washington. Almost 250 years have passed, but the organizational structure and naming is largely the same. The Army is still divided into Divisions, Brigades, Regiments, Battalions, Companies, and Platoons.