Saturday, April 9, 2016

From Camp Dix to JBMDL 1917-2017

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

July 16, 1917 - 2017 - A Century of Military Training at Fort Dix - JBMDL

Working Title: From Camp Dix to JBMDL - 100 Years of Military Training

The Idea is to Produce a Glossy Color 1st Edition Hardbound book, with a soft bound edition and digital Internet - DVDs, audio, video 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 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.


The book and media production will be written and presented in chronological order and divided into decades, wars, individual profiles and graphics, with photos composing half of the bulk, with narrative text, sidebars and captions the rest.
History of the area - South Jersey Pine Barrens - Crossroads of the revolution

Assassination of Archduke Ferdinand

Pre -1917 - Ottoman, Reich, Russian empires fall -

1917 - WW I
1920 -
1930 - Spanish Civil War
1940 - WW Ii
1950 - Korea
1960 - Cuba - Berlin - Dominican Rep
1970 - Vietnam
1980 - Grenada - Panama - Libya
1990 - Iraq I
2000 - Iraq II - Afghanistan -
2017 - Centennial
2020 - Ten Years into Future
2030 - Twenty Years into Future

Barbary Wars
Civil War
Spanish - American
WW 1
WW 2
Iraq 1
Iraq 2

Individual Profiles

- General Dix
- McGuire
- Base Commanders
- Fort Dix
- McGuire AFB
- Lakehurst Naval Air Station
-          Morristown Electronic Weapons Engineering Center
- Warren Grove Air Base
-          Wrightstown
-          Cookstown
-          Whitesbog
-          Browns Mills
-          New Egypt
-          Pemberton
-          Mt. Holly
-          Mt. Laurel
-          Columbus
-          Chesterfield
-          Bordentown
Profiles of Famous People Who Have Passed Through
-Elvis Presley
-          Nancy Sinatra
- Jim Croce
- Leroy Brown - Drill Instructor
- Others ?

Notable Events

Hindenburg disaster LZ 129 Explosion – Lakehurst NAS - 1937
BOMARC - 1960
Four Leaves Cuban Missile Crisis

Ghost towns. of JBMDL
- Pointville
- Vietnam village
- Training Sites

From A Pictorial History of the United States Army – In War and Peace, From Colonial Times to Vietnam ( Crown Publishers, NY, 1966, p. 318-340)) By Gene Gurney

Chapter 12 – World War I

“Shortly after the beginning of trouble with Mexico, the long period of peace between the armed camps in Europe suddenly ended and the Continent burst into flame. The spark that set it off was the assassination of 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 is Drawn into the war – April 1917. The United States protested the violation of neurtal 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.”

“Shortly after entering the war the United States sent elements of the American Expeditionary Force under Major General John J. Pershing to France, where they arrived in June 1917. The choice of Peshing 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. After studying Allied needs in men and arms, 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 3,000,000 – a figure that was later increased to 4,000,000 by the War Department.”

“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 reuire considerable time even under the most favorable conditions.”

“The Selective Service Act of 1917. It was clear from the start that the time-honored volunteer system could not provide all the men needed by the Army. A form of conscription was required but conscription was not popular, many Americans believing that compulsory service was unbefitting a free people, particularly if administered by military authority.  Newton D. Baker, the Secretary of War, hoped to overcome this opposition by placing the draft machinery in the hands of civilian boards. Based on Baker’s proposal, Congress passed the Selective Service Act on 19 May 1917. This Act established a National Army and required all males between the ages of twenty-one and thirty to register for service. The law 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….Under the system 2, 810, 296 men were selected and delivered to the armed forces in less than 18 months.”

“In World War I the Army attempted to select prospective officers on the basis of proved leadership and capacity to command. Only specialists, such as doctors and individuals qualified for duty in supply and technical services, received direct commissions. Officers for other assignments were obtained from qualified enlisted men  of the Regular Army, from the Reserves Officers Training Corps (ROTC) and Student Training Corps in colleges and universities, and from officer training camps. The last produced most of the officers commissioned during the war….Their capacity for leadership far exceeded that of the average officer in any previous war. It was largely these new officers who led the troops that helped defeat Germany in 1918, winning by their deeds the respect of friend and foe alike.”

“Reorganization of the Army….On the recommendation of General Pershing the strength of the infantry division was therefore increased to 27,000 men – later 28,000 – 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 unwieldly 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. The staff had three main divisions, a general staff, a technical staff, and an administrative staff. The general staff was divided into sections which varied in number depending upon size of the command. 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."

From The United States Army Infantry Training Center – Fort Dix New Jersey – The Home of the Ultimate Weapon – Combat Training

The Past – The post was originally established as Camp Dix on July 16, 1917.

John Adams Dix served in the Union forces during the Civil War. He later became a Senator from New York and thereafter Governor of the state of New York. He eventually served as Secretary of the Treasury and as Minister to France.

During World War I it developed into one of the largest training centers in the nation.

Most of the recruits and draftees arrived aboard The Camp Dix Special train.

After the 1918 Armistice it reduced its garrison and trained Reserve units.

Site of a Civilian Conservation Corps installation in the 1930s

It became, as Fort Dix, a permanent post in 1939.

In 1940 a Reception Center was built to process those inducted under the existing Selective Service Act.
During World War ii ten Infantry Divisions and many smaller units trained for overseas duty.

After the War in 1945, Fort Dix established a Separation Center that turned 1,250,000 soldiers into civilians again.

Fort Dix has continued as a training Center in the post-World War II years, through Korea and Vietnam to the present day.

 The Drill Sergeant teaches the fundamentals of military life. He instills in the trainee a sense of loyalty to his fellow soldiers and to his country. By personal example he inspires respect for his profession.

The Army Instructor imparts to the trainee the military knowledge and special skills that are essential to the men of today’s army.

These professionals are the backbone of the army.

“I am the Infantry – Queen of Battle! For two centuries I have kept our nation safe, purchasing freedom with my blood. To Tyrants, I am the Day of Reckoning; To the Suppressed, the hope of the Future. Where I the fighting is thick, there I am…I am the Infantry! Follow Me!”

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