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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
College Station in Brazos County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Main Drill Field, Texas A&M University

 
 
Main Drill Field, Texas A&M University Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brian Anderson, July 1, 2018
1. Main Drill Field, Texas A&M University Marker
Inscription. Texas A&M University opened in October 1876 and established the Corps of Cadets to fulfill its Congressional mandate to teach military tactics. The students at what was then an all-male institution were required to serve in the corps and follow military discipline. At the center of the Corps and campus activity was the Main Drill Field, where cadets drilled and practiced maneuvers before and after classes.

The site of horse-drawn artillery and infantry exercises, as well as student pilot training in the 1920s, the open parade ground also served as the university's early football field prior to construction of a permanent field in 1905. The Aggie Bonfire was held on the Main Drill Field from 1909 until 1955, and students assembled for drills and graduation activities, including the Corps' Final Review.

In 1920, A&M's Board of Directors paid tribute to former cadets killed during World War I by planting oak trees around the field. Markers at each tree provided the name, class and site and date of death for each man. The classes of 1923, 1924, 1925 and 1926 placed a granite memorial to the war casualties on the west side of the drill field, which was later named for A&M distinguished alumni Lieutenant General Ormond R. Simpson, a 1936 mechanical engineering graduate of the university. After serving in World War II, Korea
Main Drill Field, Texas A&M University Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brian Anderson, July 1, 2018
2. Main Drill Field, Texas A&M University Marker
and Vietnam, Simpson retired in 1972 and became A&M's Assistant Vice-President for Student Services and head of the School of Military Sciences. He served at the university until retiring in 1985, the year the field was named in his honor.

A&M's Main Drill Field is a testament to the school's beginnings as a military and academic institution, as well as a symbol of Aggies' service to their state and nation.
 
Erected 2004 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 13369.)
 
Location. 30° 36.794′ N, 96° 20.528′ W. Marker is in College Station, Texas, in Brazos County. Marker is on Lamar Street, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is located on the Texas A&M University campus, near the review stand at the Simpson Drill Field. Marker is in this post office area: College Station TX 77844, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. College Station Railroad Depots (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Nagle Hall (approx. 0.2 miles away); Academic Building (approx. 0.2 miles away); K. K. Legett Hall Centennial (approx. 0.2 miles away); Early Play-By-Play Radio Broadcast of a College Football Game (approx. 0.2 miles away); Texas A&M Corps of Cadets (approx. mile away); Sbisa Dining Hall (approx. mile away); Early Texas A&M Campus Housing (approx. mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in College Station.
 
Categories. Education
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 4, 2018. This page originally submitted on July 3, 2018, by Brian Anderson of Kingwood, Texas. This page has been viewed 60 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on July 3, 2018, by Brian Anderson of Kingwood, Texas. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.
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