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Vancouver in Clark County, Washington — The American West (Northwest)
 

Vancouver Barracks Parade Ground

 
 
Vancouver Barracks Parade Ground Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 13, 2008
1. Vancouver Barracks Parade Ground Marker
Inscription. On May 13, 1849, from the deck of the USS Massachusetts, the first U.S. Army troops in the Pacific Northwest spotted the Hudson’s Bay Company’s Fort Vancouver. “Mr. Douglas, the resident Governor received us very politely and Major Hatheway [U.S. Army] determined to encamp near Vancouver…” wrote an arriving soldier. The troops soon established themselves on high ground above the fort, beginning their assignment of keeping peace and providing support to Oregon Trail emigrants.

For over 150 years, the U.S. Army trained, drilled, marched off to war, and recuperated at Vancouver Barracks. From the 1850s to the 1870s, the troops were dispatched to fight the Indian Wars. In the following decades, they saw action I the Philippines, curbed labor riots in Tacoma, and attempted to keep order during the Alaska Gold Rush and strikes at Idaho mines.

Beginning in the 1800s, this parade ground became a gathering place for members of budding communities as well. “The regular dress parades at the barracks continue to attract large crowds every evening. Every [street] car and steamer in the afternoon is crowded with visitors from Portland” wrote a reporter in The Oregonian newspaper in 1899.

By World War I, as troops, spruce lumber for aircraft, mules and supplies were shipped out to support
Vancouver Barracks Parade Ground and Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 13, 2008
2. Vancouver Barracks Parade Ground and Marker
the war effort, Fort Lewis, near Olympia, WA, was under construction. Although Fort Lewis soon overshadowed Vancouver Barracks in military importance, this post remains home to the U.S. Army Reserve 104th and 396th Divisions, and the Washington National Guard, continuing the rich tradition of military service.
 
Erected by National Park Service.
 
Location. 45° 37.663′ N, 122° 39.616′ W. Marker is in Vancouver, Washington, in Clark County. Marker is on E. Evergreen Way, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1101 E. Evergreen Way, Vancouver WA 98661, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Grant House (within shouting distance of this marker); Officers Row (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Officers Row (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Marshall House (about 800 feet away); Cannon Replica Project (approx. 0.2 miles away); Congressional Medal of Honor Monument (approx. 0.2 miles away); First Japanese on the North American Continent (approx. 0.2 miles away); The O. O. Howard House (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Vancouver.
 
More about this marker.
Picture in upper right of the Vancouver Barracks Parade Ground Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin W., June 13, 2008
3. Picture in upper right of the Vancouver Barracks Parade Ground Marker
The parade ground was also used for athletic events and recreational activities. Soldiers played baseball to relieve the tedium of garrison duty.
Provided for the marker from a private collection.
The background picture is captioned, "Soldiers practice skirmish line formation on the parade ground. Skirmish lines were deployed in advance of the main body of the troops to test enemy lines for weaknesses. Kneeling or prone positions created smaller targets for enemy fire." It was provided for the marker courtesy of the Clark County Historical Museum.
 
Categories. MilitaryNotable PlacesWar, Spanish-AmericanWar, World I
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 22, 2008, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,541 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on June 22, 2008, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia.
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