A Basic Military Training Section was
officially opened at Camp Wawona in the Yosemite area on 3 May
1945. Instruction of basic military training was provided for
completion of previous partial training , individuals without
such training, and for special training of groups.
First Lieutenant Carl P. Nelson was designated
as officer in charge. With 13 instructors and four non-commissioned
administrative personnel the training program was started for
fifty enlisted men. At the end of the month a total of 171 enlisted
men had been given basic training. Five classes were sent to
the camp in May, two of which were graduated that month
Small arms firing for qualification was
conducted at the Mount Campbell Rifle
Range. During the month 271 men fired the M-1 Thompson Sub-Machine
Gun; 432 fired the M-1 Carbine and 22 men fired the M1911A1 .45
Increased facilities for practical training
of students were provided at the Basic Military Training Center
at Camp Wawona in communication operations.
A fixed radio station was set up at the
Specialist Refresher School for communication with Camp Wawona
to give working experience for radio operators, radio mechanics
and message center clerks. Student message center clerks and
cryptographic technicians were supplied by the Administrative
Refresher Section for two week periods of duty at the camp. A
teletype installation was made between the camp and Refresher
Training Headquarters by the Telephone and Telegraph Refresher
School for training students while providing administrative communication.
The following is a chronology of events in the early days of
3 May 1944: WSAUTC Basic Military Training
program center was opened at Camp Wawona, forty miles from Camp
6 May 1944: Refresher School was provided
for by operation of radio station and message center at Camp
Wawona for administrative link with Specialist Refresher Training
8 May 1944: Practical training in Telephone
and Telegraph Refresher School included operation of teletype
service to Camp Wawona.
22 May 1944: Training in the four-hour
chemical warfare course was started for 100 men of the Specialist
Refresher Training Division at Camp Wawona.
2 June 1944: The fifth basic training
class opened at Camp Wawona, Specialist Refresher Training Division,
Basic Training Center, with 58 enlisted men in the class.
29 June 1944: Major Erwin G. Morrison,
Public Affairs Officer of the Fourth Air Force, accompanied by
representatives for the Associated Press visited visited Camp
Wawona, WSAUTC's basic training center in Yosemite National Park.
As a result of a conference on 19 March
1945 the Electronics section of the Electronics and Engineman
School was set up separately at Camp Wawona. The first classes
were begun on 21 May 1945. The school courses were divided into
three phases for Radar Repairmen, Reporting Equipment (953).
Phase I - Basic electricity and magnetism
sub-course - 4 weeks.
Phase II - Vacuum tube characteristics
and circuits sub-course - 4 weeks.
Phase III - False and untimely techniques
sub-course 8 weeks
Considerable difficulty was encountered
in preparing phase I of the course, because of the special equipment
On 15 April 1945 Captain Robert V. Lucas
became officer in charge of the school.
In April 1945 the school laid a sixty mile cable line from Camp
Pinedale to Camp Wawona..The line provided one teletype channel
and one talking circuit.
On 18 April 1945 First Lieutenant L. C.
M .. Clevenger arrived at Camp Wawona to make the necessary preparations
for the first class in advanced military training. It started
on 23 April 1945, and was designed specifically for skilled technicians
who had had no basic training. Advanced courses in basic subjects,
such as scouting and patrolling, field sanitation, first aid,
and map reading were offered During May 1945 a great many cadres
or teams were moved to and from: camps under control of WSAUTC,
Visalia Army Air Field to Camp Wawona:
SCR-615B 28-37 (Iess officers); 50th Signal Aircraft Warning
Camp Pinedale to Camp Wawona: AN/TPS-IB
1-6,12; 49th Signal Aircraft Warning Detachment.
Camp Wawona, which had been operated by
the WSAUTC during the Sumner months for training purposes for
several seasons as a military training site, continued in operation
during the 1945 summer season with an increased mission.
On 19 June 1945, Squadron I, 462nd Army
Air Forces Base Unit (Signal Aviation Training) was organized
and assigned to the Camp Wawona location, effective 21 June 1945.
Captain Robert V. Lucas was appointed as commanding officer of
the squadron, in continuation of his service there in supervision
of the Ground Individual Training Division (GITD) Electronics
School which had been established in May 1945.
On 14 July 1945, the Electronics School
classes were suspended and transferred to Camp Pinedale and Camp
Sequoia. The Advanced Military Training classes at that location.
The operation of Camp Wawona was a function of the WSAUTC GITD
on the operation of classes for individual instruction. The organization
and operation of Camp Wawona increased the facilities for individual
instruction of the general organization of WSAUTC, in preparation
for increased personnel which was expected from the operation
of the redeployment program.
This installation did not appear in the
31 December 1945 War Department Inventory of Owned, Sponsored
or Leased Facilities
Source: Camp Pinedale Records,
US Air Force Historical Research Agency, Maxwell AFB