The United States Army Institute of Heraldry, also known as The Institute of Heraldry (TIOH), furnishes heraldic services to the U.S. Armed Forces and other U.S. government organizations, including the Executive Office of the President. The activities of the institute encompass research, design, development, standardization, quality control, and other services relating to official symbolic items—seals, decorations, medals, insignia, badges, flags, and other items awarded to or authorized for official wear or display by government personnel and agencies. Limited research and information services concerning official symbolic items are also provided to the general public. The Institute of Heraldry is located at Fort Belvoir, a military installation within the metropolitan area of Washington, D.C. The staff consists of thirty-two civilians.
Heraldic and other military symbols have been used by the U.S. Armed Forces and government agencies since the beginning of the American Revolution. However, there was no coordinated military heraldry program until 1919, when an office within the United States Department of War staff was established to approve and coordinate the coats of arms and insignia of U.S. Army organizations. In 1924, formal staff responsibility for specific military designs was delegated to the Quartermaster General. As the needs for symbolism by the military services and the national government expanded, the scope of the services furnished by the Quartermaster General's Office evolved into the Heraldic Program.