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Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia (Images of America Series)
     

Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia (Images of America Series)

by Gerry Depken, Julie Powell
 

Fort Oglethorpe, adjacent to Chickamauga Battlefield Park in northwest Georgia, was created in 1902. During national emergencies, the post expanded temporarily into the park. Cavalry troops trained at the post until 1942, and the WAACs/WACs arrived in 1943. The post was considered an elite assignment, with polo matches and dances. Dwight Eisenhower and John

Overview


Fort Oglethorpe, adjacent to Chickamauga Battlefield Park in northwest Georgia, was created in 1902. During national emergencies, the post expanded temporarily into the park. Cavalry troops trained at the post until 1942, and the WAACs/WACs arrived in 1943. The post was considered an elite assignment, with polo matches and dances. Dwight Eisenhower and John Pershing were stationed here. Visiting dignitaries included Sgt. Alvin York, Bing Crosby, Lana Turner, and U.S. presidents Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt. Prisoners of war and enemy aliens were confined here during both world wars. In 1946, the army declared Fort Oglethorpe surplus, and the post was decommissioned. Community leaders realized the hospital, utilities, and streets represented the core of a town, and the city of Fort Oglethorpe was incorporated in 1949. It is now an economic center in northwest Georgia.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Title: Fort Oglethorpe book details history of base, town

Author: Andy Johns

Publisher: chattanooga Times Free Press

Date: 12/8/09

Parades, prisoners of war and polo matches are all highlighted in a new book about Fort Oglethorpe's history.

The book, co-written by Gerry Depken and Julie Powell and released Monday, features photos and anecdotes from the Catoosa County town's history. Among the 220 photos are shots of Bing Crosby, Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Roosevelt, all visiting troops.

Both authors said the 128 pages fill an important niche in local history.

"There was information on the 6th Cavalry, there's information on the Civil War, but nothing on Fort Oglethorpe," said Ms. Powell, innkeeper at the Captain's Quarters Bed and Breakfast on Barnhardt Circle.

In its heyday, the fort was known as the "West Point of Medicine" with some of the U.S. Army's first M.A.S.H. units, according to Ms. Depken, chairwoman of the Fort Oglethorpe Preservation Commission. It also was one of the first bases with a female commandant, she said.

"There are so many people that move in and out of Fort Oglethorpe and Catoosa County and don't even know there was a fort here," Ms. Depken said.

Both women said they culled through a couple thousand photos to make the book. The research involved trips to the National Archives in College Park, Md., and plenty of interviews with area residents.

The stories they heard from locals were the highlight of the research, and both women said they would do the whole process over again "in a heartbeat."

"People here just opened their hearts and their albums," Ms. Powell said.

Ms. Powell and Ms. Depken also asked that anyone who can identify people in the book's photos or anyone with additional information for captions to contact them to further the research.

Toward the end of the book, the authors included current photos of old buildings and documented the buildings' original uses. It's all about keeping the area's history fresh on the minds of present residents.

"This is what makes our town different from any other," Ms. Depken said.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780738566054
Publisher:
Arcadia Publishing SC
Publication date:
12/28/2009
Series:
Images of America Series
Pages:
127
Sales rank:
1,345,387
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.40(d)

Meet the Author


Gerry Depken is a historian living in the old section of town. She has a master's degree in historic preservation and chairs the Fort Oglethorpe Preservation Commission. Julie Powell is a writer and past president of the Post Community Association. She and her husband are innkeepers of Captain's Quarters B&B on historic Barnhardt Circle. Images were contributed by institutions and individuals throughout Fort Oglethorpe and neighboring communities.

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