To those of us who have soldiers in our family we know that things aren’t always as they seems.We know that the price of freedom is not free. A solider somewhere and their family paid a very high price for it.
But to answer the private question about the draft.
1861-1973, the draft lasted more than a hundred years. If a man’s family wasn’t rich enough to pay his way out of military service and a non-rich man took his place (yes, this is what happens during the draft when a rich boy didn’t go. Someone else went in their place.) then he drafted. Many of modest means didn’t go into war on their own merit for glory or any of the other insidious reasons we sit comfortable in well climate controlled seats and proclaim they did.
The last volunteer army until prior 1973 was during the war of 1812 because by the last years of the Revolutionary War Continental Congress has issue a form of draft. The original army called the Minute Men were all volunteers but the latter part of the war they were not. People stopped supporting the Continental Army after many thought Washington was losing the war and the British would punish them if Washington lost. He was losing big time after the British started using the Hessians. They were losing until the French agreed to help and send General Marie-Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette, yes, he had a very long name that’s why Americans simply call him LaFayette. Yes, I’m aware the French troops were lead by Comte de Rochambeau but Cornwallis didn’t surrender the same day he was defeated. He considered Comte de Rochambeau and Washington beneath him.
Many may not be aware of this but in Cornwallis surrender at Yorktown. Cornwallis never officially surrendered to Washington. He refused to do it. He surrendered to Lafayette and Comte de Rochambeau instead. Britain has never officially surrendered to the US. However President Madison was able to get an a$$-half surrender out of them promising to never attack the US again. But the War 1812 was more of a double-back around of “Ah ha! You thought I forgot about you! I came to get you now that France isn’t helping you. ” By then, the French had their own problems called recovering after the French Revolution.
U.S. military draft as we knew it ended, Jan. 27, 1973. On the day in 1973, as the Vietnam War drew to a close, the Selective Service announced that there would be no further draft calls.
When did the draft lottery end?
On December 1, 1969, the Selective Service System of the United States conducted two lotteries to determine the order of call to military service in the Vietnam War for men born from 1944 to 1950. These lotteries occurred during a period of conscription from just before World War II to 1973.