Wednesday, February 15, 2017

B2 Bombers Hit ISIS Refuled by JBMDL Tankers

B2 Bombers Hit ISIS in Libya

Refuled by JBMDL Tankers 


B-2 Bomber Being Refueled in the Air. 

By William Kelly 

One of President Barack Obama’s last orders as Commander in Chief was for the U.S. military to attack Islamic State camps deep in the Libyan desert where they had fled after being driven out of Sirte.

To accomplish this mission the military called on two B-2 Spirit bombers based at Whiteman air Force Base in Missouri, where planners at the 18th Air Force and 618th Air Operations Center at Scott AFB coordinated the tanker missions, ensuring that the refueling aircraft were at the right place at the right time to get the bombers to their targets and back.

The 32 hour, 5,700 mile sortie was supported by more than a dozen KC-135 Stratotankers and KC-10 Extender Air Force tankers from five different bases, some from joint base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey.

Col. Darren Cole, the 305th AMW commander, said several units had to come together from different locations and commands and function together as a team to make this mission happen.

“It’s a big team that has to execute things on time to make it work right,” he said. “It’s pretty impressive to be able to hit a target globally at a moment’s notice with so many people participating.”
As detailed in a Popular Mechanics article – To Libya and Back - (http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/aviation/a25070/to-libya-and-back-inside-obamas-last-strike-against-isis/?zoomable0)  Joe Pappalardo writes:

"The mission is easy to describe, but hard to execute. Two B-2 Spirit bombers, each with two people in the cockpit, will take off, fly to the target, drop enough bombs to eradicate the ISIS camps, and immediately fly back home to Missouri. Things get more complex as planners weigh in on everything from the pilot's diets to the size of the bombs loaded in the airplane."

"'It takes a symphony of people,'" says Major General Scott Vander Hamm, assistant deputy chief of staff of operations at the Air Force headquarters and a former B-2 pilot."

"Eventually, it's time to refuel. The B-2s meets KC-135 Stratotankers at least twice on the way to Libya. It's a coordinated dance that must occur no matter what the weather or time of day. The airplane in need of fuel flies directly behind the tanker. The tanker then extends a telescoping fueling boom. The end of the boom—the fuel nozzle—latches into a small hole in the receiving aircraft, and the fuel pumps as the conjoined aircraft fly in harmony."

"The B-2's fuel port is on top of the fuselage, so a pilot can't tell how close the boom is to the bomber's receptacle. They watch lights under the tanker plane's fuselage that tell him to move forward, left, or right. Once the connection is made, a dashboard screen says "LATCH" and the fueling begins. As thousands of gallons of flow, the B-2s flight control computer routes it to the appropriate tanks as a way to preserve the bomber's center of gravity."

News reports said: "U.S. military strikes in Libya on Wednesday night have killed more than 80 fighters from ISIS, some of whom were believed to be actively plotting attacks in Europe, U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said on Thursday according to Reuters."

“We need to strike ISIL everywhere they show up. And that’s particularly true in view of the fact that we know some of the ISIL operatives in Libya were involved with plotting attacks,” Carter said.
A Pentagon spokesman said an initial assessment indicated the U.S. military strikes destroyed two camps southwest of Sirte, Libya, the Reuters report continued."

Col. Clint Zumbrunnen, the 305th Operations Group commander, said the 305th AMW keeps two aircraft on continuous alert just in case such a mission should come up. He said that, coupled with an efficient operations team, made sure the 305th OG would fly on time.

“The crews grow up here being conditioned for short-notice missions, to show up, plan and get the fuel to the fight,” Zumbrunnen explained. “Our current operations team is also particularly skilled at making operations happen on short notice. It makes us particularly well-equipped to do this sort of mission.”

Cole said he’s proud of the role his Airmen played in this mission.

“As always, they do an outstanding job when their nation calls upon them to do the tough tasks,” he said. “And it came off extremely well. It’s air refueling that puts the ‘global’ in ‘global strike.’”
The Libya strike is just one example of how the command facilitates the tanker war against ISIL, said Brig. Gen. Lenny Richoux, the 18th AF vice commander.

"The air bridge our planners and tanker crews create enable U.S. and allied strike aircraft to continuously hit (ISIL), or any enemy, no matter where they hide," Richoux said.

"Missions like this one are merely one of many executed every day,” he added. “The mobility enterprise conducts a massive amount of planning every single day, and we coordinate with customers around the globe for each mission. America's air refueling tanker (capabilities) are one of the key missions that set us apart from every other Air Force in the world. Everyone needs air refueling and we deliver it."

Although the 305th Air Mobility Wing at JBMDL performs such missions on a routine basis, such a dangerous, high-profile, successful mission that took many levels of coordination reemphasizes the need for the base to acquire a fleet of the new KC46A Pegasus - the next generation refueling tanker.
Since the KC will be used by all branches of the service, the joint base status is a real plus ensuring the continued mission of refueling military aircraft in flight.


Friday, October 28, 2016

JBMDL Chronology

CAMP DIX – JBMDL CHRONOLOGY OF THE FIRST 100 YEARS

1798 – John Adams Dix born in Boscawen, New Hampshire 
1812 – Dix serves in War of 1812
1861 – Dix named chairman of the Union Defense Committee in New York and made Major General in US Army. 
1872 – Dix elected Governor of New York 
21 April 1879 – Dix dies in New York City 
1909 – A.D. Irwin and A.O. Leighton form Philadelphia construction company
1915 – Lakehurst Munitions Storage facility opens.
6 April 1917 – US enters World War I – Congress authorizes the construction of 16 Army Camps to be built
19 May 1917 Selective Service Act 
12 June 1917 – Major Harry C. Williams named first commander of Camp Dix.
June 1917 – Irwin & Leighton given $13 million contract to convert New Jersey corn fields into army mobilization and training camp. 
June 1917 – First American troops arrive in France 
28 June 1914 – Construction begins on 1,655 buildings. 
16 July, 1917
1917 – Harker family house sold to government and converted to the residence of the base commander. 
23 August 1917 – Major General Chase W. Kennedy named commander of Camp Dix.
September 1917 – First 17,000 troops arrive at Camp Dix. Eventually 35,000 troops in training, filling all barracks and tents used to house the rest, including 87th and 34th Infantry Divisions, 349th and 350th Field Artillery Battalions of the 92nd Division, and 15th Infantry of New York (369th). 311th Ambulance Company. 153rd Depot Brigade. British, French and Scottish solders at Camp Dix to advise US soldiers on the role of tanks and trench warfare. 
October 1917 – Camp Dix Fire Company organized by soldiers, and the library opens with volunteers from the American Library Association. Howard L. Hughes, Harold F. Brigham librarians. 
22 October 1917 – Camp Dix base hospital opens with 61 buildings with 1,000 bed capacity, located east of the Wrightstown Circle. 
28 November 1917 – Brigadier General John S. Mallory (ad Interim) assumes command 
28 December 1917 – Brigadier General James T. Dean (ad interim) assumes command of Camp Dix.
2 January 1918 – Major General Hugh L. Scott assumes command of Camp Dix
May 1918 – 78th Infantry Division, under Maj. Gen. Chase Kennedy leaves Dix and sails to Europe. 
May 1918 – YMCA, Red Cross and Knights of Columbus begin providing programs and services to entertain the soldiers.
August 1918 – Fort Dix has 55,000 soldiers in training.
September - October 1918 – 7,970 cases of influenza and pneumonia reported, 774 deaths.
11 November 1918 – War ends. 
3 December - Camp Dix demobilization center opens that processes over 300,000 soldiers.
8 March 1919 – Camp Dix becomes Fort Dix – named permanent Army post. 
12 May 1919 – Major General Harry C. Hale assumes command of Camp Dix
31 July 1920 – Commander Hale promoted to Brigadier General.
1 August 1920 – Thomas Buchanan McGuire, Jr. born in Ridgewood, N.J. 
3 September 1920 Brigadier General William S. Graves assumes command of Camp Dix
1 October 1920 Brigadier General Clarence R. Edwards assumes command of Camp Dix
1 November 1920 Major General Charles C.P. Summerall assume command of Camp Dix
10-11 1920 – 1st Infantry Division observes first anniversary of end of WWI at ceremony presided over by Gen. John J. Pershing.
1920 – Camp Dix used as a training center for Army Reserves, National Guard and the Citizens Training Camp.
1921 – Navy establishes Lakehurst Naval Air Station 
1921 - Animal Transportation School operating. 
July 1921 – Major General David C. Shanks assumes command of Camp Dix
November 1921 – Major General Charles T. Meneher assumes command of Camp Dix.
December 1921 – Major General Harry C. Hale returns to command of Camp Dix
November 1922 – Brigadier General William S. Graves returns to command of Camp Dix
17 January 1923 – Captain Noe C. Killian commander of Camp Dix
16 May 1923 – Brigadier General William S. Graves returns to command Camp Dix
5 September 1923 – Captain Noe C. Killiian commander of Camp Dix
1923 – Camp Kendrick is open at Lakehurst Proving Grounds
8 April 1924 – Lieutenant Colonel James T. Watson commander of Camp Dix
19 May 1924 – Brigadier General William S. Graves returns to command Camp Dix
21 June 1924 – Colonel Charles Gerhardt commander of Camp Dix
26 June 1924 – Colonel John J. Bradley commander of Camp Dix
3 July 1924 – Brigadier General Frank Parker assumes command of Camp Dix
26 July 1924 – Lieutenant Colonel James T. Watson commander of Camp Dix
27 April 1925 – Colonel Stanley Ford commander of Camp Dix
21 May 1925 – Brigadier General Preston Brown assumes command of Camp Dix
10 August 1925 – Lieutenant Colonel James T. Watson commander of Camp Dix
25 September 1925 – Major Nicholas W. Campanole commander of Camp Dix
15 October 1925 – Captain Herbert D. Gilison commander of Camp Dix
16 November 1925 – Captain Richard L. Pemberton commander of Camp Dix
1925 – Mock Invasion staged at Fort Dix – first landing of an airplane on base.
6 May 1926 – Captain George Rankin commander of Camp Dix
1 June 1927 – Brigadier General Frank McCoy commander of Camp Dix
22 July 1928 – Colonel Arthur Poillon commander of Camp Dix
21 September 1928 – Brigadier General Otho B. Rosembaum commander of Camp Dix
1 October 1930 – Captain Charles Perfect commander of Camp Dix
20 October 1930 – 1st Lieutenant Richard T. Mitchell commander of Camp Dix
17 December 1930 – Major Andrew G. Gardner commander of Camp Dix
1930 – Federal Bureau of Prisons establishes prison on site. 
1930s – Citizens Military Training Camp (CMTC) offers signal, infantry, cavalry, artillery, and engineering training. After 4, 30 day courses qualify for commission in Army Reserve. 
December 1931 – Captain Samuel L. Metcalfe commander of Camp Dix
March 1932 – Lieutenant Colonel Lewis H. Watkins commander.
June 1932 – Brigadier General Howard L. Laubach commander
September 1932 – Captain Horace K. Heath commander
November 1932 – Major Alexander C. Sullivan commander
March 1933 – Lieutenant Colonel Lewis H. Watkins commander
31 March 1933 – President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs bill creating CCC that continued until 1942 – Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) planted trees, controlled soil erosion, constructed roads, dams, bridges and fire towers, operates reception, training and discharge center with two forestry companies, a physical conditioning company and cook and baker’s school. The CCC built the first airplane runway at Camp Dix. 
April 1933 – Brigadier General Howard L. Laubach commander
December 1933 – Lieutenant Colonel Torrey B. Maghee commander
March 1934 – Brigadier General Howard Laubach commander
August 1934 – Brigadier General John L. DeWitt commander
October 1934 – Major Ford Richardson commander
April 1935 – Lieutenant Colonel Albert S. Williams commander
November 1936 – Colonel Robert S. Knox commander
1936 – Telephone switchboard installed.
6 May 1937 – Hindenburg dirigible disaster at Lakehurst 
23 October 1937 – Colonel Arthur Poillon commander
1938 – Works Progress Administration and Public Works Administration funds construction of new buildings – Building 5416 – housed field grade officers. 
8 March 1939 – Camp Dix named a permanent installation and renamed Fort Dix
9 January 1940 Colonel Bernard Lentz commander
13 May 1940 – Colonel John W. Downer commander
1940 – Federal government purchases 17,000 additional acres of adjacent land and constructs new runways. 
8 September 1940 – President Roosevelt declares limited national emergency and approved the first peacetime draft. 
16 September 1940 – Peacetime draft inductees begin arriving at Fort Dix reception, training and deployment center. 44th Infantry Division assigned to Fort Dix for training. Ten other divisions trained at Fort Dix before being deployed overseas.
25 October 1940 Major General Clifford R. Powell commander
1941 – Pointville cemetery and town acquired by government for base expansion. 
18 March 1941 Colonel Cassius M. Dowell commander
1941 – McGuire leaves Georgia Tech to join US Army Air Corps, Randolph Field 
May 1942 – Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps established 
April 1943 – Dodgers and Giants play a baseball game at Fort Dix baseball field. 
July 1943 – Auxiliary Corps renamed Women’s Army Corps (WACS), working as administrative clerks, truck drivers, photographers and mechanics. 
18-19 August 1943 – McGuire with 431st Fighter Squadron Wewak, New Guinea, shoots down five Japanese Ki-43 and Ki-61 fighters, eventually scoring 38 aerial victories, second only to Maj. Richard I. Bong, US AF all time ace (40)
1 October 1943 – Colonel Holmes G. Paullin commander
25-26 December 1943 – McGuire downs seven Japanese fighter aircraft over Luzon, Philippines, and earns Medal of Honor for action on these days. 
19 January 1944 – Brigadier General Madison Pearson commander
7 Jan 1945 – McGuire killed when his P-38 crashes over Fabrica aerodrome, Negros Island.
1945 – At war’s end Fort Dix becomes demobilization center processing 1.2 million soldiers back to civilian life. 
26 October 1945 – Major General Leland S. Hobbs commander
16 March 1946 – Major general Frederick A. Irving commander
7 August 1946 Major General W. W. Eagles commander
1947 – United States Air Force established and air base transferred to Air Force 
15 July 1947 – Fort Dix becomes a Basic Training Center and home of 9th Infantry Division. 
8 April 1948 Major General Arthur A. White commander of Fort Dix
September 1948 – USAF names McGuire AFB
1949 – McGuire’s remains recovered and returned to the United States
17 September 1949 – USAF base at Fort Dix renamed McGuire Air Force Base
1 October 1949 – Major General John M. Devine commander
17 May 1950 – McGuire buried with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery
25 June 1950 – Korean War begins, basic training reduced from 14 to 8 weeks. 
1 September 1950 – Major General William K. Harrison commander
January 1952 – Major General Roderick R. Allen commander
July 1952 – Major General Homer W. Kiefer commander
31 July 1953 Major General C. E. Ryan commander
1954 – 9th Infantry Division assigned to Europe and 69th Infantry Division moves in
28 February 1955 – Major General John W. Harmony commander
16 September 1955 – Major Robert W. Ward commander
1956 – Chubby Checker entertains the troops
16 March 1956 – 69th deactivated and Fort Dix renamed U.S. Army Training Center, Infantry
1 November 1956 – Majro General Earl C. Bergquist commander
20 March 1959 – The Ultimate Weapon statute unveiled – designed and constructed at Fort Dix by soldiers Steven Goodman and Stuart Scheer.
1 September 1959 – Major General Sidney C. Wooten commander at Fort Dix
5 June 1960 – BOMARC anti-missile missile catches fire and two nuclear warheads melt in Broken Arrow event. 
10 June 1961 - Major General Reuben H. Tucker, III commander at Fort Dix
1 February 1962 – Major General Charles E. Beauchamp commander at Fort Dix
3 September 1964 – Fort Dix chapel dedicated
1 May 1966 – Major General John M. Hightower commander at Fort Dix
1967 – Fort Dix Information Office publishes a History of Fort Dix New Jersey – 50 Years of Service to the Nation 1917-1967
2 November 1968 – New York City students picnic at Wrightstown-Fort Dix
5 June 1969 – 250 prisoners in Fort Dix Stockade riot over conditions and torture. 38 were prosecuted and became known as the Fort Dix 38.
1973 – New brick reception center opened.
1978 – First female recruits enter basic training. 
1982 – 10 Stained glass windows installed in the Fort Dix chapel honoring WW I soldiers.
20 May 1982 – Last train to Fort Dix ends rail service that began in 1917.
1985 – Fort Dix Headquarters renamed Sharp Hall in honor of Gen. Richard Sharp
1987 – USAF Security Police Air Base Ground Defense School moved from Camp Bullis Texas 
1988 – Base Realignment and Closure Commission recommends ending basic and advanced individual training at Fort Dix.
17 August 1990 – A new The Ultimate Weapons statute constructed of bronze replaces original
1990 – Around the clock operations begin mobilizing and deploying troops for Desert Shield and Desert Storm. 
1991 – Kuwaiti civilians trained in basic military skills 
1991 – Active Army training mission ends. 
1992 – Fort Dix begins mobilizing, deploying and demobilizing soldiers and providing training areas for Army Reserve and National Guard soldiers
1992 – Reception center that opened in 1973 transferred to Air Force as Air Mobility Warfare Center.
1992 – Department of Defense Police replace military police
1992 – US Department of Justice – Bureau of Prisons opens a federal prison 
1993 – Somalia 
1995 – Bosnia 
1995 – Telephone switchboard, installed in 1936 replaced with fiber optic system. 
1999 – Albanian, Kosovo refugees resettled. 
August 2000 – Range 65 tank training area opens. Bryant Range named after Larry Bryant
2005 – Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst – JBMDL Established 
2007 – A memorial to McGuire placed at his fatal crash site on Negros Island by former fighter pilot David Mason 
2010 – Census 7,716 people living in 784 households with 590 families residing in CDP
2016 – Cassidy and Associates issue report on the future of the base and the state of NJ grant them another contract to continue their work. 

July - 2016 – 100th Anniversary of Camp Dix-JBMDL 

History of Fort Dix NJ - 1967 Preface

HISTORY OF FORT DIX NEW JERSEY - 50 YEARS OF SERVICE TO THE NATION 1917-1967

Prepared by the Information Office, United States Army Training Center, Fort Dix, New Jersey 08640

CONTENTS

PREFACE v.
Chapter I – THE UNITED STATES ETNERS WORLD WAR I 1
Chapter II – SELECTION OF SITES FOR MOBILIZATION CAMPS 5
Chapter III – MAJOR GENERAL JOHN ADAMS DIX, U.S.V.  9
Chapter IV – THE CONSTRUCTION OF CAMP DIX 13
Chapter V – CAMP DIX ACTIVITIES IN WORLD WAR I 19
Chapter VI – CAMP DIX AND DEMOBILIZATION 29
Chapter VII – CAMP DIX BETWEEN THE WORLD WARS 33
CHAPTER VIII – FORT DIX DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR 47
CHAPTER IX – POST – WORLD WAR II 71
CHAPTER X – IN THE SIXTIES 99
CHAPTER XI – FORT DIX TODAY 123
Appendix 1 – FORT DIX COMMANDERS 129
Appendix 2 – ROSTER (31 December 1966) 131
BIBLIOGRAPHY 133

PREFACE

The history of Fort Dix, New Jersey, is a striking example of the changing attitude of the American people and their elected representatives toward the United States Army in the 20th Century. The United States has traditionally maintained a small standing army in times of peace and relied heavily on citizen militia and conscription in times of national emergency.

This was the case at the outbreak of World War I. The United States Army at the time of the declaration of war could not claim a single organized division. Its total strength numbered only 200,000, most of whom were recent enlistments in early stages of training. A crash program to build an Army of 1,000,000 authorized by Congress demanded new training facilities. Sixteen camp sites were selected throughout the United States, and Camp Dix in central New Jersey was designed as the focal installation for the heavily populated northeastern United States.

The camp site, although well selected, was constructed in haste in an atmosphere of impermanency within a few months after the United States entered the war. Throughout the war, the camp and its personnel did a prodigious job of training and processing troops for the American Expeditionary Forces as well as for other training camps in the United States. The camp reached a peak population of 55,000 men in August 1918. With the armistice, Camp Dix became the principal separation center of the entire United States.

Following demobilization, there was no longer a national emergency – the world was already made “safe for democracy.” In the 1920s and early 1930s, Camp Dix was left to fall into almost utter decay. Were it not for the need for barracks to house members of the Civilian Conservation Corps and other programs developed during the “Great Depression,” the camp site might not have survived. There was constant pressure to return the rich farmland to meet growing agricultural needs of the area.

With the threat of another war in Europe becoming more acute each passing year in the late 1930s, the American people and the Congress began to sense the need for greater preparedness than exited prior to World War I. Caught up in this changing reaction, Camp Dix became Fort Dix, and a spirit of permanency became apparent almost immediately. Careful plans were made for the rebuilding and expansion of facilities, but Hitler and his blitzkrieg forced drastic acceleration of many projects.

However, when the United States entered World War II, Fort Dix was ready to fulfill its mission. In mid-January 1942, less than five weeks after the United States had declared war on the Axis Powers, elements of the 34th Infantry Division had received final processing at Fort Dix and were already on the high seas bound for Ireland.

During World War II, Fort Dix trained and processed personnel, including 10 full divisions, for operations in every theater throughout the world. Peak loads in all respects exceeded those of World War I. The Columbia Encyclopedia credits Fort Dix as “the largest army training center in the country” during the Second World War. With surrender of the Axis powers, the fort again became the largest separation center in the country – more than a million soldiers were processed for return to civilian life.

Post World War II showed slight resemblance to the complacent attitude that had prevailed 25 years previously. One national crisis after another convinced the American people of the need for constant vigilance.

The Berlin Airlift, invasion of South Korea, Hungarian Revolt, Lebanon Affair, Berlin Crisis, Cuban Missile Confrontation, United States participation in the Dominican Republic, escalation of assistance to the South Vietnamese – these and more have proven beyond any doubt the continuing role that the ground soldier must play in the conduct of our nation’s foreign policies.

Fort Dix today is known as “The Home of the Ultimate Weapon.” There are many who see this as incongruous in relation to the atomic and hydrogen bombs, intercontinental ballistic missiles, advances in chemical and biological warfare, and developments in the use of outer space.

To the infantryman, each new war or military conflict introduced weapons which at the time convinced many that the ultimate had been achieved – witness the spear to the club, the longbow to the bow and arrow, shrapnel to cannon, machine gun to the rifle, tank to the horse, atom bomb to the blockbuster. Each had its time and place and yet the mission of the infantryman to take and hold the objective has remained unchanged.

The poisonous gases have remained in storage since their use in World War I. The atomic bomb has not dropped on an enemy for more than 20 years. But the infantryman turned the tide in Korea and remains in his age-old role in South Vietnam. Who knows how many times in the future his singular mission will have to be carried out.

Despite all the man-hours and dollars that go into research, science has yet to find a substitute for the Ultimate Weapon – the Human Soldier. It is he who ultimately must protect that for which we are fighting. It is he who must close with and destroy those who seek to destroy us.

Who is this man, the Ultimate Weapon, this highly trained and skilled practitioner of the art of War? You know him….and know him well. He is the boy next door, the lad down the street, a son, a husband, a father. He is a career soldier, a member of the National Guard or the Army Reserves, the mayor, the drug store clerk, the bank teller. HE is THE ULTIMATE WEAPON.

The need for him has never abated. Our country needed him at Concord Bridge and Remagen Bridge, at the banks of the Delaware and the banks of the Mekong, from Trenton to Seoul. He held the line at Gettysburg and stormed the ramparts at Vicksburg, took Guadalcanal and planted Old Glory atop Mt. Suribachi. He marches in parades in Philadelphia, Chicago and Seattle, and patrols the Demilitarized Zone at Panmunjom and Taesong Dong. He recently crouched in an alley in Santo Domingo and today is successfully meeting the challenge to end communist aggression in Vietnam.

He is every alert, every ready for the fight he prays will never come. But he is there, poised, because he knows he must be there, ready to make whatever sacrifice is needed to preserve that which gave him his life’s first ever-free breath. Although he is trained for his job, the learning process for this man’s task at hand never ceases. But it does have a beginning. This beginning usually comes by visiting the local recruiting sergeant or by receiving an official envelope from the local board of the Selective Service System. From that beginning it is but a short trip to the haircut, combat boots, chow line and long hours of drill and marksmanship.

For thousands of young men each year, the first taste of military life and training comes at the “Home of the Ultimate Weapon.” Fort Dix…just a memory to some, nostalgia to others.

This is the story of Fort Dix and how it has provided, from 1917 to today, men for a man’s job.


This is the story of one camp, which continues to play a large role in perfecting THE ULTIMATE WEAPON. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

JBMDL- 100th Anniversary July 1917-2017

100th ANNIVERSARY - JBMDL BASE HISTORY PROJECT PROPOSAL

Proposal for the utilization of base history to promote, support and revitalize JBMDL as a permanent military installation.

1917 - 2017 - A Century of Military Training at Fort Dix - JBMDL

From Camp Dix to JBMDL - 100 Years of Military Training

July 16, 2017 will mark the 100th anniversary of JBMDL as a military base beginning with the training of doughboys for World War I.

The idea is to utilize the base history to promote the base for the future by producing a web site, video and glossy color 1st Edition Hardbound coffee table size book, with a soft bound edition and digital Internet - DVDs, audio and documentary film versions that can tell the base story on various media platforms.

The unique and fascinating history of JBMDL should be used to educate soldiers, officers, legislators and the general public of the everlasting value of the base as a public resource dedicated to the security of the country.

Journalist and historian William Kelly, a local area resident, as the author of two similar history books - 300 Years at the Point and Birth of the Birdie - The First 100 Years of Golf at Atlantic City Country Club, is uniquely qualified to research, write and edit a history of the base. As with his other books, such a project not only makes a profit with the public sales, but serves as a convincing prospectus to legislators, defense contractors and potential partners on future missions.

This project will also serve as a comprehensive history of the base for future students and historians and provide a platform for planning and implementing operations into the near and distant future.

BASIC OUTLINE

The book and media production will be written and presented in chronological order and divided into decades, wars, individual profiles and graphics, with photos and films composing half of the bulk, with narrative text, sidebars and captions the rest.

1917 - WORLD WAR I and the formation of the Modern Army by General Pershing

A long period of peace in Europe suddenly ended and the Continent burst into flames, sparked by the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand, the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne by a fanatical Serbian nationalist in the Balkan City of Sarajevo on 28 June 1914.

The United States was drawn into the war in April 1917 with the death of Americans in ships sunk by German U-boat submarines in the North Atlantic, especially the Lusitania.

“The United States protested the violation of neutral rights to both belligerents but in stronger terms to Germany since its actions involved the destruction of life….With public opinion aroused, Congress on 6 April 1917 declared war on Germany.”

The United States sent elements of the American Expeditionary Force under Major General John J. Pershing to France in June 1917.

As one Army historian put it, “The choice of Pershing proved to be an excellent one; he was professionally competent, a natural leader, a thorough organizer, and a strict disciplinarian. During his career in the Army he had carried out every mission given him with imagination and vigor.”

General Pershing advised the War Department to prepare to send 1, 000,000 trained men to Europe within a year and to lay plans for raising a total of 4,000,000, even though the strength of the Army at the time was about 200,000 men, 65,000 of whom were National Guardsmen in federal service.
“To increase the Army twentyfold and train it was a tremendous task, one that would require considerable time even under the most favorable conditions.”

The Selective Service Act of 1917

It was clear from the start that the volunteer system could not provide all the men needed and conscription was required even though conscription was not popular. Many Americans believed that “compulsory service was unbefitting a free people.”  

Newton D. Baker, the Secretary of War, hoped to overcome this opposition by placing the draft machinery in the hands of civilian boards and Congress passed the Selective Service Act on 19 May 1917, establishing a National Army and requiring all males between the ages of twenty-one and thirty to register for service, but the law also permitted volunteering for the Regular Army, National Guard, Marine Corps and Navy.

“It specifically prohibited the twin evils of the Civil War period, the hiring of substitutes and the payment of bounties to induce enlistments.”

In 18 months 2, 810, 296 men were drafted and many of them were sent to Camp Dix.
Reorganization of the Army

General Pershing increased the strength of the infantry division to 28,000 men – and the division was reorganized into 2 infantry brigades of 2 regiments each, a field artillery brigade, a regiment of combat engineers, 3 machine gun battalions, and supporting service troops.

“These changes made the American infantry division roughly twice the size of the British, French, and German infantry divisions at the time. The enlarged division, though unwieldy and difficult to control, had tremendous striking power and staying power; the characteristics that experience proved were most needed to crash through enemy defenses on the Western Front.  The war Department organized 62 divisions during World War I. At the close of the war 43 of these had been sent to France and 19 others were in various stages of organization and training.”

Establishing a New System of Logistics.

“Probably the most difficult organizational problem that the Army had to deal with in World War I was the establishment of a smooth-functioning logistical system for both the Zone of Interior and the theatre of operations. To support it the resources of the nation were mobilized as never before.”

“Most of 1917 was devoted to retooling and expansion of industrial plants, to the construction of barracks and facilities to house troops, and to estimating requirements and letting contracts. New weapons were slow in rolling from the factories and many of the first drafted were trained with dummy or obsolete weapons.”

“Pershing Reorganizes the AEF. The size and complexity of the AEF convinced General Pershing that success in battle would be impossible without efficient staff work. This required a large number of trained officers using a common system under uniform methods. After studying British and French staffs, Pershing adopted an organization largely patterned after that of the French. For Pershing’s headquarters (GHQ) and army headquarters there were five sections: G-1, Administration; G-2, Intelligence; G-3 Operations; G-4 Coordination (Supply, Replacements); and G-5, Training.”

Camp Dix was given responsibility for much of the training, not only for World War I but served as a major point of exit and reentry for many soldiers, sailors and airmen and women over the next century.

Just as General Pershing was the right man at the right place at right time, Irwin & Leighton was the right company needed to build a military base from scratch.

It’s not quite clear exactly how they got the contract, from competitive bidding or they just knew someone, but either way, Irwin & Leighton was a fortunate choice.

Although a young company established eight years earlier, it had a solid reputation and a solid leadership corps, beginning with the owners Alexander Dickson Irwin, Jr. and Archibald Ogilvie Leighton, both better known as “A.D.” and “A.O.”

A.O. Leighton was born in Ballycarry, near Belfast in North Ireland, the son of a solicitor (lawyer) born in Scotland. Leighton was a contactor involved in the construction of the Sligo Post Office in Yeat's country Ireland, when news of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake inspired him to come to America to help rebuild the city. Leighton got as far as Philadelphia where he found work constructing the Germantown Junction train station.

There he met A.D. Irwin, the son of the owner of a major mill in the Kensington section of Philadelphia, and together they formed Irwin & Leighton in 1909, drawing straws to see whose name would go first on the company logo. Their first offices were at 126 North 12th Street in center city.
They successfully completed a number of major construction jobs before 1917 but getting the $13 Million dollar government contract for the “Cantonment” - temporary lodging to house troops at Camp Dix.

Situated in the Pine Barons of Central New Jersey, the location was selected because of its unique situation between Philadelphia and New York, and remoteness from the population centers.

As they best utilized their talents, Irwin was the chief administrator in the office and handled the contracts and paperwork while Leighton went out in to the field and directed the construction operations. Some seventeen secretaries accompanied Leighton to then sleepy Wrightstown to set up a makeshift office to process the hundreds of workers who applied for the jobs - carpenters, plumbers, electricians, truck drivers and livery stable hands, as horses are to do much of the heavy work.

Many of the professional tradesmen arrived daily by train or car, dressed in suits and ties and changed into their work clothes to get down and dirty, then changed back into their suits and ties before returning home for dinner with their families.

Once they got into a good routine they are building a new barracks a day, and were under pressure to complete the job on time and on budget, which they did.

Having successfully completed Camp Dix in time for the thousands of doughboys to arrive for basic training, Irwin & Leighton got other government contracts to build military bases in Gettysburg, ten other states and Canada. Their expertise eventually led to the construction of dozens of major buildings that changed the skyline of Philadelphia and other cities.

In 1956 Irwin and Leighton sold the company to their employees who continued following their mission statement, and the company’s success. In 2009 the company commissioned a history that chronicles some of the work they did at Camp Dix.

Irwin & Leighton Inc. Construction company 1030 Continental Drive # 1, King of Prussia, PA
Irwin & Leighton’s celebrated its 100th Anniversary in 2009. As part of our celebration, we published a special commemorative book entitled Our First 100 Years. The book highlights a selection of the many pioneering projects Irwin & Leighton is proud to have partnered in since its founding in 1909. Links to PDFs of the various chapters of the book are below. If you would like a copy of Our First 100 Years, please contact us.


Cantonment at Camp Dix

The United States Army Cantonment at Camp Dix

The Camp Dix project, although one of Irwin & Leighton’s earliest, stands event today as one of its most meaningful because of its significance and importance of the project to the World War I effort, and the speed in which it was built.

Irwin & Leighton was chosen to build the Cantonment at Camp Dix when the site’s installment began in 1917. The initial project was required to be completed under a very aggressive time schedule to meet the impending demands of World War I. To do this, Irwin & Leighton directly employed and/or coordinated the efforts of hundreds of workers who, in accordance with the custom of the day, arrived at work in shirt and tie, changed into work clothes and changed again to go home. Irwin and Leighton established an onsite Employment Office where seventeen clerks screened applicants who arrived by train and motor car. A fleet of autos was required to make the weekly commutes to the Philadelphia National Bank for the workers’ payroll.

The project started in July 1917, in farm fields. The scope involved ten sections of multiple barracks and support buildings as well as extensive infrastructure work. In less than sixty days, the entire project was substantially complete. In that time, Irwin & Leighton used forty million board feet of lumber, which was brought to the site by rail and erected in production fashion.

When the company hit stride, it was completing one barrack per day. Irwin & Leighton’s onsite superintendent was E. M. Campbell. The company further organized the project with “Heads of Departments” for survey, concrete, carpentry, sheet metal, plumbing, electrical, road construction, water and sewers, a pumping station, etc.

The 3,000 acre complex is located inside the Pineland National Reserve in Central New Jersey, and was named for Major General John Adams Dix, a veteran of the War of 1812 and the Civil War.
Used as a staging ground and training area for units during World War I, it was made a permanent Army post in 1939 and was renamed Fort Dix

Lakehurst, New Jersey – Bureau of Yards and Docks

In 1921, the Navy established Lakehurst Naval Air Station to serve as its headquarters for lighter-than-air flight after the pioneering use of zeppelins by the German forces in World War I. In order to house large helium-filled dirigibles, the Navy hired Irwin & Leighton to build Lakehurst’s Hanger No. 1, a massive structure measuring 961 feet long, 350 feet wide and 200 feet high. The great span and clear height were achieved through state-of-the-art design. Inside it, naval engineers assembled the first American-built airship, the Shenandoah. Lakehurst was also the location of the now-infamous Hindenburg disaster. The crash of the Hindenburg dirigible on May 6, 1937 over Lakehurst was the 20th century’s first transportation disaster widely captured by newsreel, audio recordings and still photos.

Camp Dix - JBMDL Chronology of the first 100 Years 

1798 – John Adams Dix born in Boscawen, New Hampshire
1812 – Dix serves in War of 1812
1861 – Dix named chairman of the Union Defense Committee in New York and made Major General in US Army.
1872 – Dix elected Governor of New York
21 April 1879 – Dix dies in New York City
1909 – A.D. Irwin and A.O. Leighton form Philadelphia construction company
6 April 1917 – US enters World War I – Congress authorizes the construction of 16 Army Camps to be built
19 May 1917 Selective Service Act
June 1917 – Irwin & Leighton given $13 million contract to convert New Jersey corn fields into army mobilization and training camp.
June 1917 – First American troops arrive in France
28 June 1914 – Construction begins on 1,655 buildings.
16 July, 1917
1917 – Harker family house sold to government and converted to the residence of the base commander.
September 1917 – First 17,000 troops arrive at Camp Dix. Eventually 35,000 troops in training, filling all barracks and tents used to house the rest, including 87th and 34th Infantry Divisions, 349th and 350th Field Artillery Battalions of the 92nd Division, and 15th Infantry of New York (369th). 311th Ambulance Company. 153rd Depot Brigade. British, French and Scottish solders at Camp Dix to advise US soldiers on the role of tanks and trench warfare.
October 1917 – Camp Dix Fire Company organized by soldiers, and the library opens with volunteers from the American Library Association. Howard L. Hughes, Harold F. Brigham librarians.
22 October 1917 – Camp Dix base hospital opens with 61 buildings with 1,000 bed capacity, located east of the Wrightstown Circle.
May 1918 – 78th Infantry Division, under Maj. Gen. Chase Kennedy leaves Dix and sails to Europe.
May 1918 – YMCA, Red Cross and Knights of Columbus begin providing programs and services to entertain the soldiers.
September - October 1918 – 7,970 cases of influenza and pneumonia reported, 774 deaths.
11 November 1918 – War ends.
3 December - Camp Dix demobilization center opens that processes over 300,000 soldiers.
8 March 1919 – Camp Dix becomes Fort Dix – named permanent Army post.
1 August 1920 – Thomas Buchanan McGuire, Jr. born in Ridgewood, N.J.
10-11 1920 – 1st Infantry Division observes first anniversary of end of WWI at ceremony presided over by Gen. John J. Pershing.
1920 – Camp Dix used as a training center for Army Reserves, National Guard and the Citizens Training Camp.
1921 – Navy establishes Lakehurst Naval Air Station
1921 - Animal Transportation School operating.
1930 – Federal Bureau of Prisons establishes prison on site.
1930s – Citizens Military Training Camp (CMTC) offers signal, infantry, cavalry, artillery, and engineering training. After 4, 30 day courses qualify for commission in Army Reserve.
31 March 1933 – President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs bill creating CCC that continued until 1942 – Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) planted trees, controlled soil erosion, constructed roads, dams, bridges and fire towers, operates reception, training and discharge center with two forestry companies, a physical conditioning company and cook and baker’s school. The CCC built the first airplane runway at Camp Dix.
1936 – Telephone switchboard installed.
6 May 1937 – Hindenburg dirigible disaster at Lakehurst
1938 – Works Progress Administration and Public Works Administration funds construction of new buildings – Building 5416 – housed field grade officers.
8 March 1939 – Camp Dix named a permanent installation and renamed Fort Dix
1940 – Federal government purchases 17,000 additional acres of adjacent land and constructs new runways.
8 September 1940 – President Roosevelt declares limited national emergency and approved the first peacetime draft.
16 September 1940 – Peacetime draft inductees begin arriving at Fort Dix reception, training and deployment center. 44th Infantry Division assigned to Fort Dix for training. Ten other divisions trained at Fort Dix before being deployed overseas.
1941 – Pointville cemetery and town acquired by government for base expansion.
1941 – McGuire leaves Georgia Tech to join US Army Air Corps, Randolph Field
May 1942 – Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps established
April 1943 – Dodgers and Giants play a baseball game at Fort Dix baseball field.
July 1943 – Auxiliary Corps renamed Women’s Army Corps (WACS), working as administrative clerks, truck drivers, photographers and mechanics.
18-19 August 1943 – McGuire with 431st Fighter Squadron Wewak, New Guinea, shoots down five Japanese Ki-43 and Ki-61 fighters, eventually scoring 38 aerial victories, second only to Maj. Richard I. Bong, US AF all time ace (40)
25-26 December 1943 – McGuire downs seven Japanese fighter aircraft over Luzon, Philippines, and earns Medal of Honor for action on these days.
7 Jan 1945 – McGuire killed when his P-38 crashes over Fabrica aerodrome, Negros Island.
1945 – At war’s end Fort Dix becomes demobilization center processing 1.2 million soldiers back to civilian life.
1947 – United States Air Force established and air base transferred to Air Force
15 July 1947 – Fort Dix becomes a Basic Training Center and home of 9th Infantry Division.
1949 – McGuire’s remains recovered and returned to the United States
17 September 1949 – USAF base at Fort Dix renamed McGuire Air Force Base
17 May 1950 – McGuire buried with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery
25 June 1950 – Korean War begins, basic training reduced from 14 to 8 weeks.
1954 – 9th Infantry Division assigned to Europe and 69th Infantry Division moves in
1956 – Chubby Checker entertains the troops
16 March 1956 – 69th deactivated and Fort Dix renamed U.S. Army Training Center, Infantry
20 March 1959 – The Ultimate Weapon statute unveiled – designed and constructed at Fort Dix by soldiers Steven Goodman and Stuart Scheer.
1960 – BOMARC missile catches fire and two nuclear warheads melt in Broken Arrow event
3 September 1964 – Fort Dix chapel dedicated
1973 – New brick reception center opened.
1978 – First female recruits enter basic training.
1982 – 10 Stained glass windows installed in the Fort Dix chapel honoring WW I soldiers.
20 May 1982 – Last train to Fort Dix ends rail service that began in 1917.
1985 – Fort Dix Headquarters renamed Sharp Hall in honor of Gen. Richard Sharp
1987 – USAF Security Police Air Base Ground Defense School moved from Camp Bullis Texas
1988 – Base Realignment and Closure Commission recommends ending basic and advanced individual training at Fort Dix.
17 August 1990 – New The Ultimate Weapons statute constructed of bronze replaces original
1990 – Around the clock operations begin mobilizing and deploying troops for Desert Shield and Desert Storm.
1991 – Kuwaiti civilians trained in basic military skills
1991 – Active Army training mission ends.
1992 – Fort Dix begins mobilizing, deploying and demobilizing soldiers and providing training areas for Army Reserve and National Guard soldiers
1992 – Reception center that opened in 1973 transferred to Air Force as Air Mobility Warfare Center.
1992 – Department of Defense Police replace military police
1992 – US Department of Justice – Bureau of Prisons opens a federal prison
1993 – Somalia
1995 – Bosnia
1995 – Telephone switchboard, installed in 1936 replaced with fiber optic system.
1999 – Albanian, Kosovo refugees resettled.
August 2000 – Range 65 tank training area opens. Bryant Range named after Larry Bryant
2005 – Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst – JBMDL Established
2007 – A memorial to McGuire placed at his fatal crash site on Negros Island by former fighter pilot David Mason
2010 – Census 7,716 people living in 784 households with 590 families residing in CDP
2016 – Cassidy and Associates issue report on the future of the base and the state of NJ grant them another contract to continue their work.
July - 2016 – 100th Anniversary of Camp Dix-JBMDL