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The first peacetime regular army was authorized by the Continental Congress after American independence in August 1784. Washington suggested a small force of only 2,631 men to serve primarily on the frontier, west of the Appalachian Mountains. The First American Regiment, under command of General Arthur St. Clair, was sent against the Native American nations of the Ohio country. Fighting against the Miamis, St. Clair’s soldiers were untrained, ill-equipped, underfed, and sickly. This resulted in a disastrous defeat in which the entire U.S. Army suffered a loss of about 700 killed and some 300 wounded out of a total strength of around 1,700, with some 100 civilians killed and 50 wounded as well.