Abilene in Taylor County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
12th Armored Division at Camp Barkeley
By April 1944 the manpower of the division was at peak strength with combat commands, three battalions each of tanks, armored infantry, and armored field artillery, and numerous support units. Intensive day and night training at the camp culminated in tests that qualified the division for combat. Camp Barkeley’s population was more than twice that of the city of Abilene. Soldiers’ families became a part of the community and many returned here to live.
The last combat division stationed at Camp Barkeley, the 12th Armored shipped out to Europe in September 1944. The division, nicknamed “Hellcats” and dubbed “The Mystery Division” in Gen. George S. Patton, Jr.’s historic drive to the Rhine River, served with distinction, receiving more than 800 battle decorations. A dominating presence in Abilene during the war, Camp Barkeley was deactivated on April 1, 1945.
Erected 1992 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 22.)
Location. 32° 26.156′ N, 99° 48.515′ W. Marker is in Abilene, Texas, in Taylor County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Vapor Trail and Hartford Street, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Although the marker faces Farm to Market Road 3438, the marker is accessed from Vapor Trail. Marker is in this post office area: Abilene TX 79605, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. 12th Armored Division Memorial (here, next to this marker); Lt. Col. William E. Dyess (approx. 0.4 miles away); 7th Bombardment Wing, Heavy (approx. half a mile away); Air Force Medal of Honor Recipients (approx. half a mile away); Dyess Elementary School (approx. 1.4 miles away); Abilene Woman's Club Building (approx. 2.4 miles away); Site of Western Cattle Trail (approx. 2.4 miles away); Company I 7th Texas Infantry (approx. 3.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Abilene.
Also see . . .
1. 12th Armored Division. The website of the 12th Armored Division Memorial Museum located in Abilene, Texas. (Submitted on June 24, 2014.)
2. Camp Barkeley. From the Texas State Historical Association’s “The Handbook of Texas”. (Submitted on June 24, 2014.)
3. Camp Barkeley - Texas Escapes (Submitted on June 24, 2014.)
Categories. • Forts, Castles • War, World II •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 24, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 445 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on June 24, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.