The two bases operated independently of one another for more than 60 years before merging in 2010. [2], The Joint Base Garrison operates the installation on behalf of the warfighting units, families and extended military community who depend on JBLM for support. Founded in 1917 and spreading out over 87,000 acres, Fort Lewis - Gray Army Airfield is one of the largest and most modern military bases in the United States. The landscape is very rocky from glacial meltwater deposits. As work on the camp was pushing forward, the War Department named it "Camp Lewis" after Meriwether Lewis of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. In 2009, the former Fort Lewis Regional Correction Facility was remodeled and renamed the Northwest Joint Regional Correctional Facility (NWJRCF). [10], During World War II the Air Transport Command 4131st Army Air Force Base Unit used GAAF as the CONUS hub for the Alaskan West Coast Wing, ferrying supplies, equipment and aircraft to Eleventh Air Force at Elmendorf Field, near Anchorage. The land and the buildings were transferred to the secretary of the interior, Department of Indian Education, to be used as an Indian boarding school. It serves as a training and mobilization center for all services and is the only Army power projection base west of the Rocky Mountains. Covering over 80,000 acres of land, it is one of the largest and most active U.S. military installations in the world. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 212.5 males. A portion of the initial land was taken from the Nisqually tribe's reservation. The facility houses minimum and medium security prisoners from all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.[3]. For every 100 females, there were 168.3 males. 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment. JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD – If the Lewis Exchange shopping center smells a little sweeter, it may be the new Bath & Body Works store that opened Nov. 13. If you are a military member or family looking for housing by Joint Base Lewis-McChord, located in Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA, you've come to the right place! Fort Lewis, Washington. Fort Lewis, also known as Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM), is located near Tacoma, Washington. Fort Lewis began life as Camp Lewis after congressional approval in 1916. Modern day Fort Lewis, part of Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM), began as a training encampment in 1902, but was officially named Camp Lewis in 1917 after the famed discoverer Meriwether Lewis (Lewis and Clark Expedition). There were 3,560 housing units at an average density of 232.8 per square mile (89.9/km2). ; Access to JBLM Visitors without a military ID card must apply for an access pass at the JBLM Visitors Center before entering the base. Specialties: Located in the Historic Red Shield Inn building on Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM), the Lewis Army Museum is the only certified U.S. Army Museum on the West Coast. One of the best things about JBLM is the area. Captain David L. Stone and his staff arrived at the camp site 26 May 1917, and a few days later the initial construction began. Fort Lewis' terrain is primarily a mixture of dense conifer woods and open Puget prairie-garry oak woodlands. The airfield, called Tacoma Field, opened in 1930 and was renamed McChord Field in 1940. Jobs. Search Site. The consolidation of Fort Lewis and McChord Air Force base began operation as a Joint Base in January 2010. Consisting of 87,000 acres (350 km2) of prairie land cut from the glacier-flattened Nisqually Plain, it is the premier military installation in the northwest and is the most requested duty station in the army. Fort Lewis proper contains 86,000 acres (350 km2); the Yakima Training Center covers 324,000 acres (1,310 km2). The unit began as the 2122st Garrison Support Unit (Army Reserve), overseeing the mobilization of about 27,000 Soldiers. The mission of the unit is to provide support to mission commanders and the joint base community, to serve as an enabler to the soldiers as they train and project America's combat power, and to make JBLM the station of choice for American soldiers and their families. Brigadier General David L. Stone, who had supervised the original construction of Fort Lewis as a captain, returned as its commanding general in 1936, serving until 1937. With the conclusion of the war, activities at Lewis ground to a standstill. It was merged with the United States Air Force's McChord Air Force Base on 1 February 2010 into a Joint Base as a result of 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Commission recommendations. JBLM Main & North have abundant high-quality, close-in training areas, including 115 live fire ranges. 19 of the Best Joint Base Lewis Mcchord Things to Do Nearby (2020 Edition) The Fort Lewis Indian boarding school operated from 1892 until 1911. Today it is one of the largest and most modern installations in the U.S. and is home to the I Corps, 62nd and 446th Airlift Wings, 7th Infantry Division, 1st Special Forces Group, 75th Ranger Regiment, 66th Theater Aviation Command, and Madigan Army Medical Center (just to name a few). The total area is 3.78% water. The median income for a household on the base was $32,384, and the median income for a family was $32,251. Camp Lewis passed from the hands of Pierce County and became the property of the federal government when the deed for 62,432 acres (253 km2) was recorded in the county auditor's office in Tacoma. The Army base began life as Camp Lewis in 1917 when the citizens purchased the land and donated it to the US government for military use. Of all households 2.0% were made up of individuals, and 0.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. At least 2 years’ military or civilian instructional experience. During the summer months (June, July, August), JBLM North hosts the Leader Development and Assessment Course, a capstone program for the U.S. Army's ROTC program. The post supports over 120,000 military retirees and more than 29,000 family members living both on and off post. Fort Lewis proper contains 86,000 acres (134 sq mi; 350 km2); the Yakima Training Center covers 324,000 acres (506 sq mi; 1,310 km2). 8.2% of the population and 7.1% of families were below the poverty line. The Firing Point community club, with cafeteria, opened in February 2009. Members of the Women's Army Corps (WAC's) first arrived at Fort Lewis in the waning months of 1943 and were well established by the spring of 1944. JBLM Soldiers receive medical care through on-base Madigan Healthcare System facilities such as Madigan Army Medical Center, the Okubo Clinic, and the Nisqually Clinic. 3. Shortly after its initial mission of training Army recruits the base was rechristened as Fort Lewis and i… According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 15.9 square miles (41.2 km2), of which, 15.3 square miles (39.6 km2) of it is land and 0.6 square miles (1.6 km2) of it is water. With relative peace between the Utes and Navajos and the white settlers, Fort Lewis was decommissioned in September 1891 and troops from the Twenty-Second Infantry left for Fort Lyon, Colorado, before continuing on to Fort Kehoe, Montana. Helicopters began assisting with high altitude (above 10,000 feet) SAR operations in the 1980s. [9], On 5 February 2004, Task Force Olympia was activated, as a sub-element of I Corps headquarters with the mission to command forward-deployed units in Iraq. Military Trusted Businesses. [4] In 1927, Pierce County passed another bond measure to establish a military airfield just north of Fort Lewis. The Multi-Purpose Range Complex opened in 1989, and the Shoot House and Urban Assault Course opened in 2005. Fort Lewis, due to its size and reserved land, serves as an important habitat for amphibian development and study.[11]. Additional training space is available at the Yakima Training Center in eastern Washington, including maneuver areas and additional live fire ranges. JBLM Family and MWR is a network of support and leisure services designed to serve the needs, interests and responsibilities of each individual in the Joint Base Lewis-McChord community, as well as enhance the quality of their lives. This site is managed by the JBLM Garrison Public Affairs Office. McChord Field s… Fort Lewis - Gray Army Airfield is located just nine miles south of Tacoma, and is an important United States Army installation. Consisting of 87,000 acres of prairie land cut from the glacier-flattened Nisqually Plain, it is the premier military installation in the Northwest. It is part of Joint Base Lewis-McChord.. On-post temporary lodging at Fort Lewis is in Rainier Inn and Complex.. The Army Air Force closed its facilities in 1947.[10]. It is used by Army helicopters. David H. Hackworth described his service commanding a training battalion at the Fort during the Vietnam War in his memoir "About Face". All these statistics were typical for military bases. Invasive Scotch Broom has taken over many areas. 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Lind Noncommissioned Officer Academy, This page was last edited on 22 November 2020, at 14:28. The Japanese and Italian internees were transferred to Fort Missoula and the Germans to Fort Lincoln, and the temporary detention facility closed on March 30, 1943. Subordinate units assigned to Fort Lewis are: JBLM has more than 25,000 soldiers and civilian workers. Find military housing by Joint Base Lewis-McChord, apartments and homes for rent, and houses for sale with The population density was 1,248.5 people per square mile (482.0/km2). Fort Lewis, named after Meriwether Lewis of the famed Lewis and Clark expedition, is one of the largest and most modern military reservations in the United States. The new joint base has 93 years of service history and is the oldest military installation in … Sometime in the early 1960s Interstate 5 was built through the fort separating the northwest corner of the fort, and creating "Northfort". Fort Lewis's geographic location provides rapid access to the deep water ports of Tacoma, Olympia and Seattle for deploying equipment. [1], Joint Base Lewis-McChord is a major Army garrison, with much of the 2nd Infantry Division in residence, along with Headquarters, 7th Infantry Division; 593rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command; and 1st Special Forces Group. Joint Base Lewis-McChord is the oldest military installation in the Pacific Northwest for the US Army and Air Force. The census-designated place (CDP) Fort Lewis is located within the installation's area. At the start of the Korean War, the Army decided to expand Yakima Training Center. Find Navy Federal Branches and ATMs in your area. It is now known to have contaminants in the water and soil such as arsenic and iron. This marked the first time that I Corps had forward soldiers in combat since the end of the Korean War. They donated the land to the federal government for military use. The base continues to serve as a training and mobilization center for all services. The initial occupants were Army recruits that were being trained for the front lines of combat in World War I. Design Standards. The racial makeup of the base was 60.4% White, 20.3% African American, 1.4% Native American, 3.4% Asian, 1.8% Pacific Islander, 6.2% from other races, and 6.4% from two or more races. In a few months, Fort Lewis became the largest Service Forces Training Center in the nation, training medics and engineers exclusively. JBLM Airmen receive medical care at the McChord Clinic as well as Madigan Army Medical Center. In addition to covering your rent at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, your BAH allowance covers all routine maintenance, on-call emergency maintenance, average utilities, trash and recycling. The project of constructing an army airfield, which later became McChord Air Force Base, directly north of the Fort Lewis installation, received approval as a WPA project in January 1938, and $61,730 was allocated for construction. Fort Lewis was originally established in 1917 with the passage of a Pierce County bond measure to purchase 70,000 acres (280 km2) of land to donate to the federal government for permanent use as a military installation. The temperatures during summer vary from the mid 40s at night to the mid 70s during the day, occasionally peaking over 90 Â°F (32 Â°C). In 1951, the Installation was enlarged to 261,451 acres (1,058.05 km2) and construction of the current cantonment area began. [2], In 1947, approximately 60,000 acres (240 km2) were cleared of unexploded ammunition and returned to the original owners. I Corps stays prepared to deploy on short notice worldwide to command up to five divisions or a joint task force. At the conclusion of World War II, the northwest staging area of Fort Lewis became a separation center and discharged its first soldiers in October 1945. Community. Between 1962 and 1965 the Army used Fort Lewis-based units to conduct a series a counterinsurgency-focused exercises to develop and validate the nation’s embryonic doctrine for fighting the Cold War’s numerous “wars of liberation” (Flint 2017). [9], In 1981, I Corps was reactivated at Fort Lewis. [10], Helicopters based at the airfield assisted with medical evacuations at Mount Rainier National Park on numerous occasions in the 1970s. On 12 October 1999, General Eric K. Shinseki, Chief of Staff of the Army, announced I Corps would lead the acceleration of Army transformation, training and the initial creation of the first two Stryker Brigade Combat Teams at Fort Lewis. Fort Lewis, home of the 627th Air Base Group, in Washington, has been the home to thousands of veterans. Fort Lewis Army Base Guide Consisting of 87,000 acres of prairie land cut from the glacier-flattened Nisqually Plain, it is the premier military installation in the Northwest. The field is named in honor of Captain Lawrence C. Gray, who lost his life during a free balloon flight at the field on 4 November 1927. The Yakima Training Center is a major sub-installation of JBLM, and provides a full range of training lands and ranges to active and reserve component units. The first recruits moved into their new barracks on 5 September 1917, exactly two months after the post building plan had been handed to the contractors. [8] It previously controlled and provided host unit support to mobilizing, deploying and demobilizing reserve component units from all the U.S. military services.