The collar devices worn by Aides to Major Generals feature an eagle holding a shield emblazoned with red and white stripes and two stars in a blue chief at the top of the shield.

A two-star General Officer rank, the grade of Major General is above Brigadier General and below Lieutenant General. It is the highest permanent General Officer rank in the United States military; both Lieutenant General and General are temporary ranks typically created during wartime or emergencies. Prior to the Civil War, only George Washington and Winfield Scott were promoted to a rank above Major General (and Scott’s was a brevet promotion).

The maximum number of active-duty Major Generals in the United States Army is capped by statute at 90, or roughly 39 percent of the entire cadre of General Officers (O-7 to O-10). Of that number, however, some are specifically reserved for special positions: in 1917, for example, Congress increased the rank of officers serving as The Judge Advocate General of the Army to Major General.

Major Generals serve in positions of command (divisional, joint task forces, training centers) or as chiefs or directors of Army or joint staffs. The length of an assignment for a Major General averages between two and four years.

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