Camp White

White City Oregon

Background of Camp White

  • Camp White was named in honor of George A. White who served as an Adjutant General in 1915.
  • Was built on the Agate Desert.
  • Camp White trained engineering, medical, and artillery units between 1942 and 1945.
  • White City, Oregon began in 1941 when the U.S. Army constructed Camp White on 43,000 acres outside of Medford, Oregon as an army training camp.

Oregon Reacts to WWII

The military build up before and during World War II profoundly affected many Oregon communities as various military bases bringing tens of thousands of American soldiers of sailors and marines. With all of these men coming in to serve also came family's which caused growing pains or a large increase in number of people in towns and for several cities as local populations increasing at a dramatic incline, not only with servicemen, but also with civilians filling new service jobs both in the private sector, or jobs that aren't under direct control of the government, and in the camps. This caused housing to become scarce and expensive, schools were often overcrowded, and crime rose as formerly sleepy communities buzzed with the frenzy of wartime boom towns otherwise know as

a town undergoing rapid growth due to sudden prosperity.

Camp White Story's from the past

Cecil Milliner, one of the original trainers of the 300th at Camp White, describes some of the elements of basic training:

In basic training a trainee learns "Military Courtesy" with the hand salute; the face movements (right face, left face, about face); marching movements (forward, to the rear, right and left flank and oblique); open ranks for inspections and closed rank; the attention ("Ten-HUT"), at ease and parade rests. Weapons training included manual of arms, how to care for your weapons and triangulation before going on the rifle range. On the rifle range one learns safety around weapons, how to shoot from the prone, sitting, kneeling and standing positions. Other training was camouflage; bridge building (footbridge, Bailey bridge, ponton bridge, wood bridges); building tank traps of various kinds; barbed wire entanglement construction; how and where to use explosives of all kinds; how to set out booby traps and to probe for them and how to disarm them and setting out the different tank mines. Infantry movements included the skirmish line, diamond formation, in-line formation and compass training. The 300th were also trained with machine guns (tommy guns, burp guns, 50 caliber); the 45 caliber semi-automatic pistol; 30 mm and the 4.2 mm mortars and use of the anti-tank guns of various kinds. They learned how to set up a bivouac; performed forced marches up to fifteen miles one way and back and stood guard duty and did assault boat training while crossing a river.

Camp White End of WWII

At the end World War II, most of Camp White was decommissioned, sold, or returned to pre- war public and private ownership. The vast majority of its buildings, including mess halls, dormitories, service and training facilities were sold for scrap, relocated for other uses. The Station Hospital, the only portion of Camp White to rely upon masonry construction, was the focus of various proposals including a relocated Oregon State Hospital. After prolonged debate, the Camp White Station Hospital was transferred to the Department of Veterans Affairs. The facility was reopened as the Veterans Affairs Domiciliary in February 1949.

Camp White Today

Camp White today is a great tourist attraction and a great place to have a relaxing day. It's a great reminder of what happened in the past and it's a really neat place to visit. To all if the service men who went to that camp I thank you.