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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Lehigh Acres in Lee County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Buckingham Army Air Field

1942-1945

 
 
Buckingham Army Air Field Marker image. Click for full size.
By Tim Fillmon, October 1, 2018
1. Buckingham Army Air Field Marker
Inscription.  Early in 1942, the United States Government leased 6,500 acres of mostly brush, palmetto trees, and in some places pine stumps left from previous logging operations, to establish a flexible gunnery training school on this site. Construction of the training center began in February 1942. By June, 1,200 men were working 10 hours a day to have the field ready for operations. The field was formally activated on July 5, 1942. Classes began on September 7, 1942, even though field construction was far from complete. At the peak of its operation, the field was home of 16,000 people and consisted of almost 100 buildings.

Initially, bomber gunners went through a five-week training program. They were trained to maintain, disassemble and effectively fire .30 and .50 caliber machine guns. These guns were used to defend bomber aircraft such as the B-17, B-24 and B-29 from enemy fighter planes. Both trap and skeet shooting ranges were used to develop aiming skills. Students were also trained on the moving target range riding in Jeeps, simulator training and in the final week air to air gunnery shooting at targets towed by aircraft.

Various
Buckingham Army Air Field Marker looking north on Gunnery Rd image. Click for full size.
By Tim Fillmon, October 1, 2018
2. Buckingham Army Air Field Marker looking north on Gunnery Rd
aircraft were used to perform the training mission at the field. They included the AT-6, AT-18, RB-34, P-39, P-63, B-17, B-24 and B-29.

The field was closed on September 30, 1945. Fifty thousand gunners had graduated from the program. In addition, the field had trained co-pilots for the B-17, B-24 and B-29 bombers. The field made a significant contribution to victory in World War II.
 
Location. 26° 38.256′ N, 81° 43.034′ W. Marker is in Lehigh Acres, Florida, in Lee County. Marker is at the intersection of Gunnery Road North and Sunset Road, on the right when traveling north on Gunnery Road North. Located at the southwest corner of the Buckingham Air Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Lehigh Acres FL 33971, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Buckingham Army Air Field Gunnery Ranges (approx. 1.3 miles away); The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service (approx. 5.3 miles away); The South Florida Ecosystem (approx. 5.4 miles away); Explore Southwest Florida Naturally! (approx. 5.4 miles away); The Florida Manatee (approx. 5.4 miles away); Why do Manatees Come to Manatee Park ? (approx. 5.4 miles away); Other Visitors to Manatee Park (approx. 5.4 miles away); Freshwater Wetlands Habitat (approx. 5.4 miles away).
 
Categories.
Buckingham Army Air Field Marker looking south on Gunnery Rd image. Click for full size.
By Tim Fillmon, October 1, 2018
3. Buckingham Army Air Field Marker looking south on Gunnery Rd
Air & SpaceWar, World II
 

More. Search the internet for Buckingham Army Air Field.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 20, 2018. This page originally submitted on December 16, 2018, by Tim Fillmon of Webster, Florida. This page has been viewed 68 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on December 16, 2018, by Tim Fillmon of Webster, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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