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October 11, 2017

The Year 1942 was one to remember. The announcement of the name choice, Camp Carson came in March, but April's news was also a big move. The Army was announcing new camps all over the west. Most of these were training bases. Denver, Pueblo, La Junta and even Colorado Springs would be home for its second post. A training post would be established at the Colorado Springs Airport.

The news that a technical school would be placed at the airport arrived just as Camp Carson was starting to take shape. The news that yet another 3,000 men would be coming to this area was certainly a shock to little Colorado Springs. At the time it had a population of just over 30,000. Within a year there would be a nearly 50% growth, most of that being soldiers. The new camp would also bring in up to 250 airplanes being based here.

The new camp was projected to be built east of the airport, but another site, north of the field was finally selected. The biggest challenge would be the addition of new runways and hangers for the airport. In a matter of a few weeks this went from being a proposal to confirmation of the project. Not only would work continue at Carson, but now a new construction site would see more barracks and company area structures. Streets were being cut in what had been prairie. The advantage with this site was that it was relatively flat. The school was for photography as well as flying. Construction of the camp came under Camp Carson to speed up progress.

Camp Carson was a maze of construction equipment, where the new technical school was just a field with little stakes being put into the ground. One problem was about to surface. The country was shifting into a war mode. Things were happening quicker than you might expect. The first men assigned to the school were about to arrive!

So, where will these men go! There was no room at Camp Carson, as the barracks there were not ready for the men who would be filling them once they were! The answer was a temporary home. Where might that be? The Colorado Springs City Auditorium was being readied. By the end of April there were 100 soldiers living in the big open room. A month before, no one even knew these men were coming! The full purchase of land was not even complete. So there is still a lot more to be said about our two military posts as we get further into 1942.


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