Spring Valley in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Birthplace of the Army Chemical Corps
The permanent buildings and part of campus were turned over to the Bureau of Mines on July 6, 1917, for use as chemical warfare laboratories and proving grounds. McKinley Hall served as one of the first of these laboratories.
On August 30, 1917, the Thirtieth Engineers, later known as the first gas regiment, was organized here. Companies A and B and First Battalion Headquarters marched out of the American University on Christmas Day, 1917 and sailed for France the next day. They were soon followed by Companies C and D, and later by Companies E and F which were organized at Fort Myer.
In June 1918, the chemical warfare organization of the Bureau of Mines was transferred to the War Department as a step toward the creation of the chemical warfare service, now the U.S. Army Chemical Corps.
Dedicated in 1960 by Veterans of the First Gas Regiment.
Location. 38° 56.159′ N, 77° 5.358′ W. Marker is in Spring Valley, District of Columbia, in Washington. Marker can be reached from Nebraska Avenue NW 0.1 miles west of Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Washington DC 20016, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. General Artemas Ward Monument (approx. ¼ mile away); American University (approx. ¼ mile away); John Wesley (approx. 0.3 miles away); Winning the War (approx. half a mile away); Live on Our Stage! (approx. half a mile away); Battery Kemble Park (approx. 0.6 miles away); For the Children (approx. 0.6 miles away); Churches and Cemeteries (approx. ¾ mile away).
More about this marker. The marker is located on the right side of the entrance to the McKinley Building, on the American University Campus.
Also see . . . Hazardous Waste and History Mix On D.C. Tour. Yamiche Alcindor's Washington Post article (9/21/2009) article on hazardous waste spots in the District, with a highlight on birthplace of the Chemical Corps and the leftover chemicals and munitions problem: "...During World War I, 661 acres of forested land around the American University campus were used for Army tests. The range became known as the American University Experiment Station.... In 1993, a construction crew's discovery of an artillery round triggered an evacuation (Submitted on August 4, 2010.)
Categories. • War, World I •
Credits. This page was last revised on March 4, 2017. This page originally submitted on August 4, 2010, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California. This page has been viewed 1,164 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on August 4, 2010, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.