Utah's First Line of Defense : The Utah National Guard and Camp W. G. Williams, 1926-1965
Utah Historical Quarterly
Utah State Historical Society
"Since earliest times, America has traditionally kept a militia of citizen-soldiers ready for any emergency. John Adams considered the annual training days one of colonial New England's most important institutions; and from the founding of the Republic, the militia has been called upon to serve both at home and abroad. The nation's first constitution, the Articles of Confederation, stipulated that 'every State shall always keep up a well regulated and disciplined militia, sufficiently armed and accoutred, and shall provide and constantly have ready for use, in public stores, a due number of field pieces and tents, and a proper quantity of arms, ammunition and camp equipage."'
Although we now call it the National Guard, the duty of the state militia has changed little since the early days of the Republic. Today, we maintain a large standing army — something our forefathers abhorred because we have found it necessary to our national security; but the militia forms an important reserve force of private citizens who are ready to serve their country." [Author]