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Flag Lowering Ceremony

September

3tl. 1979

FortAmador and Fort Gulick, CanalZone

Fort Amador-1915

Fort Amador, located at the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal on the east bank, was named in honor of Dr. Manuel Amador Guerrero, the first president of the Republic of Panama. Opened in 1917, Fort Amador was for many years the home of the Coast Artillery units which manned the big costal defense guns on the Pacific side of the Isthmus of Panama. Although officially designated as Fort Amador in 1911, the entire area which today comprises Fort Amador as well as the nearby islands of Naos, Culebra, Perico and Flamenco was referred to as Fort Grant in the early years. In 1911, when names were first assigned to the military installations in the Canal Zone by the War Department, the mainland area formerly known as Balboa Dumps was formally designated Fort Amador. However, possibly due to vagueness of boundaries or a failure to publicize the new name, the name Fort Grant (which was given to the four islands in honor of Ulysses S. Grant, Commander in Chief of the Union Armies in the Civil War and eighteenth President of the United States) was commonly used to designate

the mainland installation as well. It was not until 1917 when the widow of President Amador formally protested the failure to use the proper designation, that steps were taken by Presidential Executive Order to precisely define the boundaries of Fort Amador and put its name into command as well as official use. Construction period In August 1911, when the first ground was broken in preparation for the construction of the Pacific coast defense fortifications on the islands, the area now known as Fort Amador was little more than a broad stretch of mud flats and mangrove swamp. This area was used as the dumping place for rubble excavated from the canal during its construction. The Isthmian Commission, however, had started in 1912 building a breakwater from the mainland, in the vicinity of Balboa, to Naos Island to protect the canal channel from cross currents. This breakwater was later extended to connect Naos with the other three islands. The flats on both sides of a portion of the breakwater were filled in to create Fort Amador and that part of the breakwater that now constitutes the

causeway extending from Fort Amador to the islands was solidly ballasted to support a railroad. Construction of post facilities at Fort Amador began in 1913. Beginning the year before, construction of the Panama Canal fortifications sites on the Pacific side had been concentrated at Fort Grant where the major caliber coastal defense batteries were being installed. By 1917 construction of the eight heavily fortified batteries on the islands was completed and the twenty-one guns emplaced in the batteries -- six 14-inch guns, two 6-inch guns, twelve 12-inch guns (mortars), and one 16-inch gun, which at that time was the heaviest caliber weapon in the world. Added to this formidable array of weapons, which made the armament at the Pacific end of the Canal the most powerful defense complex in the world, were two additional batteries on Culebra Island in 1928, each with one 14-inch railway gun emplaced there the following year. In 1915 the construction of barracks, several quarters and the headquarters building at Fort Amador was completed and ready for occupancy by troops of the 45th and 144th Coast Artillery Companies, the first units to be stationed at Fort Amador. (The 81st Coast Artillery Company, the first such unit to arrive on the isthmus -- on December 22,1913, was stationed at Fort Grant.) Additional units followed shortly thereafter. Although Fort Amador was built and used primarily for housing the Coast Artillery units that manned the big guns at Fort Grant, some armament was installed at Fort Amador. Two batteries (Batteries Birney and Smith) were built at the southern extremity of the post on a little

FortAmador
rise just north of the present Officers' Club, with construction beginning in 1913 and two 6-inch guns on disappearing carriages installed in each one in 1917. Post-World War I Following World War I, Fort Amador continued to be regarded as an installation of major significance. In 1932 the military forces in the Canal Zone were reorganized into Pacific and Atlantic sectors with the Pacific began to shift from considering a frontal attack from the sea as the most likely means by which an enemy attack would be launched on the canal to placing emphasis on antiaircraft weapons as the primary defense measure. Thus the big coast defense guns were placed on standby status. The Japanese air attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, mounted from aircraft carriers hundreds of miles beyond the range of the largest coastal defense weapon further and armament. Of the Panama Canal defenses, virtually nothing was spent at Fort Amador. The giant guns were gone over and improved and, at the same time, the coast defense batteries were brought up to full strength, but the once impregnable harbor defenses essentially occupied a secondary role. In effect, the changed outlook in defense planning reduced the status of Fort Amador from its rank as a strategic fortification to that of an Army post. World War II Under the reorganization of this emergency period, the coast defense was organized as the Panama Coast Artillery Command with headquarters at Fort Amador. As an administrative and tactical headquarters, Fort Amador was busier during WorId War II than at any time before. With the danger of an attack on the canal having diminished in 1944 and, at the same time, the need for manpower in active theaters was reaching a peak, the War Department ordered a reduction in Coast Defense personnel in this area. Accordingly, the Second Provisional Coast Artillery was organized in the Canal Zone for shipment to the United States. Though approximately one-third of the 63 big coast defense guns on both sides of the isthmus had been dismantled and scrapped in 1943 (including the four mortars at Fort Amador), the remaining guns were not scrapped until after the war, beginning in 1946 and being completed in 1948. Some of the massive concrete battery emplacements have been filled in or covered

14-inch railway gun on Culebra Island (1929-1947).

Sector being headquartered at Fort Amador. During the period 1929 to 1939, shortage of funds and personnel resulted in many of the big seacoast guns on both sides of the Isthmus being placed in caretaker status. Shift in defense planning During the 1930's events in Europe and the emergence of such technological developments as the aircraft carrier and the long-range bomber aircraft began to challenge the old axioms on which the defense of the Panama Canal had been based. Defense planning

doomed the future of the big guns. Nevertheless, there were no better weapons available for precision fire at surface targets and, even though primary emphasis was placed on antiaircraft defense, the big guns in the Can a I Z 0 newer e rehabilitated, tested and placed in service status immediately prior to the United States' entry into World War II. Under the Coast Artillery Augmentation Program instituted in 1939 and carried out within the next two years major stress was placed on antiaircraft elements

over; some have been reclaimed by the jungle. But others stand grey and empty -- stark monuments to a sound but obsolete strategy; a reminder to military men of the vast changes in defense concepts that have taken place in a comparatively short span of years. Post-World War II changes Concurrent with the scrapping program following the war, there was a return to the sector organization (which was a bolished in 1952), but Pacific Sector Headquarters was set up at Fort Clayton. Fort Amador continued to be the Coast Defense Headquarters and the station for an tiaircraft elements, including HAWK missiles on Flamenco island (which were removed from the Canal Zone in the early 1970's). The next major change affecting Fort Amador occurred in 1949 when the Army command was moved to Fort Amador from Quarry Heights. Although setting up Army Headquarters was a 1949 event, it was the outgrowth of the 1947 organization of the United States Army Caribbean to supplant the former Panama Canal Department organized in 1917. Fort Amador was officially approved as the home the Army Headquarters in the Canal Zone on April 20, 1949. Since then Fort Amador has been Headquarters of the United States Army Caribbean Command its successor commands in the Canal Zone .. The United States Army Forces Southern Command (USARSO) and, since 1974, the 193d Infantry Brigade (Canal Zone). The 193d Infantry Brigade, previously the major subordinate command of USARSO, was reorganized on

November 1974 as an installation under the United States Army Forces Command (FORSCOM), headquartered at Fort McPherso n , Georgia, and also designated as the senior Army command in the Canal Zone and the Army component of the United States Southern Command headquartered at Quarry Heights, Canal Zone. Treaty Impact on Fort Amador The Panama Canal Treaty of 1977 stipulates the transfer of certain facilities at Fort Amador to the Republic of Panama upon treaty implementation (October 1, 1979). Accordingly, the 193d Infantry Brigade (Canal Zone) relocated its headquarters, all of its staff offices located at Fort Amador, and the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, as well as the 470th Military Intelligence Group, the 79th Army Band band and other affected elements, from Fort Amador during the period of August through September 1979. In addition to that area, the treaty

specifies that eight Army family h o u s i n g quarters also be transferred to the Republic of Panama on the same date. The Brigade's headquarters and most of the staff offices and units involved were relocated to Fort Clayton, which will be a Defense Site under the control of the U.S. Forces for the life of the treaty (December 31,1999). 'The remaining part of Fort Amador will become, on October 1, 1979, a Military Area of Coordination for housing, administered jointly by the U.S. Forces and the Re public! of Panama. The U.S. Forces 'will retain the remaining Army family housing (128 quarters) and the community support services there .mtil some point during the new treaty period, when no longer needed. Since the treaty will restore Panamanian jurisdiction over the Canal Zone on October 1, 1979, t he Brigade's name will be changed to 193d Infantry Brigade (Panama) effective that date.

Fort Amador Today-The faeilities shown and the outlying islands (formerly Fort Grant) will transfer to PanamaOctober 1, 1979.

Fort Gulick
Fort Gulick, located on the Atlantic side of the Isthmus of Panama near the town of Margarita, was named in honor of Major General John Wiley Gulick, Chief of Coast Artillery (1930-34) and at one time a sector commander under the Panama Canal Department. Built as part of the World War II expansion program and opened on May 5, 1941, Fort Gulick is the newest of the Army posts in the Panama Canal area. It was constructed because of the need to relieve nearby Fort Davis of congestion, and expansion of facilities at Fort Davis was not considered advisable. Construction began in 1940 and was completed in 1943. One of the major facilities constructed on the post (in addition to personnel and administration structures) was a 250-bed Station Hospital which was built at a cost of nearly $2,000,000. The fort was heavily populated during World War II, at one time housing a 1,000-bed 'General Hospital which occupied 14 barracks buildings. With the reduction of military strength in the Canal Zone following World War II, the Station Hospital was closed. One of the principal activities now located at Fort Gulick is the U.S. Army School of the Americas (USARSA), which was moved there from Fort Amador in 1949 and occupies the old Station Hospital building (Building 200). Also at Fort Gulick are the following units and activities of the 193d Infantry Brigade (Canal .Zone}: the3d Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces, which has been stationed at Fort Gulick since 1962 following relocation from Fort Bragg, North Carolina; the 549th Military Police Company of the Brigade's Law Enforcement Activity; and Atlantic-side offices of some of the Brigade's staff activities. In addition to quarters for military personnel, the post contains a housing area for Department of Defense civilian employees. Under provisions of the Panama Canal Treaty of 1977, Fort Gulick will become a Military Area of Coordination on Octo ber 1, 1979, the date of implementation of the treaty. As required by the treaty, some company-size barracks facilities at Fort Gulick will be turned over to the Republic of Panama by the third year of the treaty period (October 1,1982). By the end of the fifth year (October 1, 1984) all of the post -- except family housing, community services facilities (which include the Army commissary and the elementary school), and the ammunition storage facility -- will be turned over to Panama. The remaining facilities will be turned over to Panama sometime during the life of the treaty (by December 31, 1999).

Fort Gulick-Home of the U.S. Army School of the Americas (left background) and the 3d Battalion, 7th, Special Forces Group (Airborne) (foreground).

S1gnificanceoftheEvent
Today is the last day the United States flag jwtll fly at the Army reservations of Fort Amador and Fort Gulick. Tomorrow he facilities at Fort Amador which, until a few days ago, housed the headquartelS'-of the 193d Infantry Brigade (Canal Zone) and those direct~rates, staff offices and units located there, as weil as eight Army- family housing units, will be transferred to the Republic of Panama, as stipulated by the Panama Canal Treaty of i 977. Also beginning tomorrow, the remaining portion of Fort Amador (family housing and community services activities) and Fort Gulick will become Military Areas of Coordination. Under the terms of the new treaty and related agreements, beginning tomorrow, the United States Flag will fly .along side of the flag of the Republic of Panama at Fort Clayton and Howard Air Force Base on the Pacific side of the Isthmus of Panama and at Fort Davis, Fort Sherman and Galeta Island on the Atlantic sidedesignated by the new treaty as Defense Sites which will be under the comlliete control of the. United States Forces for the life of the treaty, that i t til December 31, ~ 1999. Both fla . I also fly at the Marine BarrJ~kS an, which Will. be part of/( ward Air Force. Base/Fort) ., fense site, and at two Milit of Coordination . Quarry Hel .and the United States Naval Station at Fort Amador.

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Ceremony Participants
FortAmador
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Brigadier General Kenneth C. Leuer Commander 193d Infantry Brigade (Canal Zone) Colonel Ward M. LeHardy Deputy Commander (Operations and Training) 193d Infantry Brigade (Canal Zone) 3d Battalion, 5th Infantry 4th Battalion (Mechanized), 20th Infantry 193d Combat Support Battalion 210th Aviation Battalion Headquarters Command 79th United States Army Band

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Fort Gulick
Colonel George M. Scheets Commandant United States Army School of the Americas Major Ronald H. Darnell Executive Officer 4th Battalion, 10th Infantry 4th Battalion, 10th Infantry 3d Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Jungle Operations Training Center United States Army School of the Americas 549th Military Police Company Composite Unit: USA Health and' Dental Clinics Air Force Reserve Band

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Primary Mission: Defense of the Panama Canal