The War Of Camp Lewis

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Prepare for war! That is what you hear and your heart stops while your jaw opens and you gasp for air that is not there. While the history and establishment of Camp Lewis is not as important as preparing for war, it is important to know the past in order to help posture and mold the future of tomorrow. The idea for Camp Lewis was fought for by the civilian populace of Pierce County in Washington State. Late in1916, as war continued to escalate in Europe, a private group of concerned citizens gathered at American Lake to organize a training program designed for civilian personnel. The program was designed to encourage readiness among the community in preparation for the possibility of going to war in Europe. One of the attending civilians was a cadet named Stephen Appleby. Mr. Appleby (a former Captain in the Minnesota National Guard) was vice-president of the Northwest Business Men’s Preparedness League and a bank cashier for Tacoma Washington. He was informed that the Army was sending out a survey team to the Northwest in search of establishing an Army Post. Mr. Appleby contacted the commander of the survey team and asked him to make a site visit of the camp that the community had established as possibility of use for the Army. Captain Richard Parks (Army survey team commander) visited Pierce County as requested and found it to be impressive. Major General J. Franklin Bell visited the area after hearing the recommendation of the site from
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