ARTICLE 1. --To break the company into platoons, and to reform the Company.
To break the company into platoons.
265. The company marching in the cadenced step, and supposed to make part of a column, right in front, when the instructor shall wish to cause it to break by platoon, he will give the order to the captain, who will command: 1. Break into platoons, and immediately place himself before the center of the first platoon.
266, At the command break into platoons, the first lieutenant will pass quickly around the left to the Center of his platoon, and give the caution: Mark time.
267. The captain will then command: 2. March.
268. The first platoon will continue to march straight forward; the covering sergeant will move rapidly to the left flank of this platoon (passing by the front rank) as soon as the flank shall be disengaged.
269. At the command march, given by the captain , the second platoon will begin to mark time; its chief will immediately add: 1. Right oblique. 2. MARCH. The last command will be given so that this platoon may commence obliquing the instant the rear rank of the first platoon shall have passed. The men will shorten the step in obliquing, so that when the command forward march is given, the platoon may have its exact distance.
270. The guide of the second platoon being near the direction of the guide of the first, the chief of the second will command Forward, and add MARCH, the instant that the guide of his platoon shall cover the guide of the first.
271. In a column, left in front, the company will break into platoons by inverse means, applying to the first platoon all that has been prescribed for the second, and reciprocally.
272. In this case, the left guide of the company will shift to the right flank of the second platoon, and the covering sergeant will remain on the right of the first.
To re-form the company.
273. The column, by platoon, being in march, right in front, when the instructor shall wish to cause it to form company, he will give order to the captain, who will command: Form company.
274. Having given this command, the captain will immediately add: 1. First platoon. 2. Right oblique.
275. The chief of the second platoon will caution it to continue to march straight forward.
276. The captain will then command: 3. MARCH.
277. At this command, repeated by the chief of the second, the first platoon will oblique to the right lit, in order to unmask the see second ; the covering sergeant, on the left of the first platoon, will re: turn to the right of the company, passing by the front rank.
278. When the first platoon shall have nearly unmasked the second, the captain will command : 1. Mark time, and at the instant the unmasking shall be complete, be will add: 2. MARCH. The first platoon will then cease to oblique, and mark time.
279. In the mean time the second platoon will have continued to march straight forward, and when it shall be nearly up with the first, the captain will command Forward, and at the instant the two platoons shall unite, add MARCH; the first platoon will then cease to mark time.
280. In a column, left in front, the same movement will be executed by inverse means, the chief of the second platoon giving the command Forward, and the captain adding the command MARCH, when the platoons are united.
281 . The guide of the second platoon, on its right, will pass to its left flank the moment the platoons begin to oblique; the guide of the first, on its right, remaining on that flank of the platoon.
282. The instructor will also sometimes cause the company to break and reform by platoon, by his own direct commands. In this case, he will give the general commands prescribed for the captain above: 1. Break into platoons; 2. MARCH; and 1. Form company; 2. MARCH.
283. If, in breaking the company into platoons, the subdivision that breaks off should mark time too long, it might, in a column of many subdivisions, arrest the march of the following one, which would cause a lengthening of the column, and a loss of distances.
284. In breaking into platoons, it is necessary that the platoons which oblique should not shorten the step too much, in order not to lose distance in column, and not to arrest the march of the following subdivision.
285. If a platoon oblique too far to a flank, it would be obliged to oblique again to the opposite flank, to regain the direction, and by the double movement arrest, probably, the march of the following subdivision.
286. The chiefs of those platoons which oblique will face to their platoons, in order to enforce the observance of the foregoing principles.
287 When, in a column of several companies, they break in succession, it is of the greatest importance that each company should continue to march in the same step , without shortening or slackening, whilst that which precedes breaks, although the following company should close upon the preceding one. This attention is essential to guard against an elongation of the column.
288. Faults of but little moment, in a column of a few companies, would be serious inconveniences in a general column of many battalions. Hence the instructor will give the greatest care in causing all the prescribed principles to be strictly observed. To this end, he will bold himself on the directing flank, the better to in observe all the movements.
ARTICLE II.-Being in column, to break files to the rear, and to cause them to re-enter into line.
289. The company being in march, and supposed to constitute a subdivision of a column, right (or left) in front, when the instructor shall wish to cause files to break off he will give the order to the captain, who will immediately turn to his company, and command:
1. Two files from left (or right)
to rear. 2. MARCH.
290. At the command march, the two files on the left (or right) of the Company, Will mark time, the others will continue to march straight forward; the two rear rank men of these files Will, as soon as the rear rank of the company shall clear them, move to the right by advancing the outer shoulder; the odd number will place himself behind the third file from that flank, the even number behind the fourth, passing for this purpose behind the odd number; the two front rank men will, in like manner, move to the right when the rear rank of the company shall clear them, the odd number will place himself behind the first file,, the even number behind the second file, passing for this purpose behind the odd number. If the files are broken from the right, the men will move to the left, advancing the outer shoulder, the even it number of the rear rank will place himself behind the third file, the odd number of the same rank behind the fourth ; the even number of the front rank behind the first file, the odd number of the same rank behind the second, the odd numbers for this purpose passing behind the even numbers. The men will be careful not to lose their distances and to keep aligned.
291. If the instructor should still wish to break two files from the same side, he will give the order to the captain, who will proceed as above directed.
292. At the command march, given by the captain, the files already broken, advancing a little the outer shoulder, will gain the space of two files to the right, if the files are broken from the left, and to the left, if the files are broken from the right, shortening, at the same time, the step, in order to make room between themselves and the rear rank of the company for the files last ordered to the rear; the latter will break by the same commands and in the same manner as the first. The men who double should increase the length of the step in order to prevent distances from being lost.
293. The instructor May thus diminish the front of a company by breaking off Successive groups of two files, bat the new files must always be broken front the same side.
294. The instructor, wishing to can.,,,(- files broken off to return into line, will give the order to the captain, who will immediately command:
1. Two files into line. 2. MARCH.
295. At the command march, the first two files of those marching by the flank will return briskly into line, and the others will gain the space of two files by advancing the inner shoulder towards the flank to which they belong.
296. The captain will turn to his company, to watch the observance of the principles which have just been prescribed.
297. The instructor having caused groups of two files to break one after another, and to return again into line, will afterwards cause two or three groups to break together, and for this purpose, will command: Four or six files from left (or right) to rear; MARCH. The files designated will mark time ; cacti rank will advance a little the outer shoulder as soon as the rear rank of the company shall clear it, will oblique at once, and each group will place itself behind the four neighboring files, and in the same manner, as if the movement had been executed group by group, taking care that the distances are preserved.
298. The instructor will next order the captain to cause two or three groups to be brought into line at once, who turning to the company, will command:
Four or six file into line-MARCH.
299. At the command march, the files designated will advance the inner shoulder, move up and form on the flank of the company by the shortest lines.
300. As often as files shall break off to the rear, the guide on that flank will gradually close on the nearest front rank man remaining in line, and he will also open out to make room for files ordered into line.
301. The files which march in the rear are disposed in the following order: the left files as if the company was marching by the right flank, and the right files as if the company was marching by the left flank. Consequently, whenever there is on the right or left of a subdivision, a file which does not belong to a group, it will be broken singly.
302. It is necessary to the preservation of distances in column that the men should be habituated in the school's of detail to execute the movements of this article with precision.
303. If new files broken off do not step well to the left or right in obliquing; if when files are ordered into line, they do not move up with promptitude and precision, in either case the following files will be arrested in their march, and thereby cause the column to be lengthened out.
304. The instructor will place himself on the flank from which the files are broken, to assure himself of the exact observance of the principles.
305. Files will only be broken off front the side of direction, in order that the whole company may easily pass from the front to the flank march.