Hudson River Valley NHA: Camp Shanks

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The Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area  is one of the forty-nine federally recognized National Heritage Areas in the United States. The National Park Service considers the Hudson Valley NHA an affiliate. Through the partnership with the Park Service and other organizations, the Heritage Area includes over one hundred sites spread across ten counties in New York State.


Camp Shanks served as the last stop in the USA for soldiers heading out to the front lines during World War II. The majority of the landing forces for the D-Day invasion shipped out from here.


The government built the complex of barracks, mess halls, and other buildings in 1942 in Orangeburg, NY. They forced hundreds of local residents from their homes via eminent domain to make room for the military base.


Approximately 1.5 million G.I.s processed through the facility before shipping out to combat. Most soldiers spent eight to twelve days there.


Female soldiers in the Women’s Army Corps lived on the base to keep it running.


Today, Camp Shanks is commemorated by a museum behind the town library in a recreated barracks building with displays and artifacts from the time period.


Volunteers staff the museum on weekends. Many volunteers are World War II veterans. The three men who were there the day I visited answered my questions and were happy to pose for a picture for me


Hudson Valley National Heritage Area posts➤

Location: 20 Greenbush Road, Orangeburg, NY
Designation: National Heritage Area
Date designated/established: 1996
Date of my visit: August 18, 2018


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