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Foreword

The history of World War II is making increasingly clear the central fact
that the tightest rein on the military effort of the United States in that war was
imposed by transportation. As long as this nation fights overseas the same
situation is likely to reoccura prospect that gives a special importance to the
exposition of the subject in this series. The Army promptly recognized the im-
portance of transportation when, as in World War I, it centralized its supervi-
sion of this branch of its vast logistical effort in a Chief of Transportation and
created (in July 1942) a Transportation Corps.
The Army did not, and could not, control all the factors that entered into
the movement of its men, munitions, and supplies. The larger story the reader
must seek elsewhere in the two volumes on Global Logistics and Strategy and in
the theater volumes of the U.S. ARMY IN WORLD WAR IL Here the story
is told from the records and point of view of the Army's Chief of Transporta-
tion, Maj. Gen. Charles P. Gross. In this volume, the second in the group of
three Transportation Corps volumes, Mr. Wardlow passes to the policies and
methods adopted to move men and matriel within the continental United
States and out to theaters of operationsthe core of General Gross's mission
and to provide the Transportation Corps' quota of equipment and trained
soldiers necessary to accomplish its oversea mission.

ALBERT C. SMITH
Washington, D. C. Maj. Gen., U. S. A.
7 June 1954 Chief of Military History

vii
The Author
Mr. Chester Wardlow was pursuing graduate studies in Political Science at
the University of Chicago when the United States entered World War I. In
1918, employed by the Shipping Board, he went overseas with the mission that
became the American Section of the Allied Maritime Transport Council. From
1921 until 1935 he was connected with private shipping organizations. During
the period 1935-41 he held the office of Sole Arbiter of the Trans-Atlantic Pas-
senger Conference. In 1941 Mr. Wardlow was employed as Coordinator of
Transportation for the Army and remained in that position until 1946. From
1946 until his retirement in 1954 he was the Chief Historian of the Transporta-
tion Corps. He is the author of the first volume of the Transportation Corps
subseries in the U.S. ARMY IN WORLD WAR II, published in 1951.

viii
Preface
The purpose of this volume is twofold: to present and evaluate the
machinery and the procedures employed by the Army Chief of Transportation
in moving troops and military matriel within the United States and from the
United States to the oversea theaters of operations, and to outline the methods
used and the problems encountered by the Chief of Transportation in training
the troops and providing the equipment and supplies needed to maintain
effective transportation services in the oversea commands.
The movement of troops and matriel was the basic and distinctive function
of the Chief of Transportation, and for that reason the greater part of the book
has been devoted to that aspect of his work. Training and supply functions
were performed by other technical services as well as by the Transportation
Corps, and since all technical services worked under the general direction of
Army Services Forces headquarters, there was considerable similarity in the
methods employed and the standards enforced. The discussion of training and
supply is therefore confined to those aspects in which the Chief of Transporta-
tion had unique responsibilities or encountered exceptional problems.
Much of this account is presented by simply stating what the functions of the
Chief of Transportation were and how he performed them, although his oper-
ating difficulties and his disagreements with other agencies are treated as fully
as seems warranted. During the prewar emergency period, as the United States
steadily drifted toward open belligerency, one of the handicaps suffered by
those concerned with military transportation was the lack of an adequate
record of how the Transportation Service had functioned in World War I. The
documented account given here should in large measure obviate a similar lack
if the nation should again become involved in a major conflict.
In the interest of completeness some matters that were discussed in The
Transportation Corps: Responsibilities, Organization, and Operations are dealt with
again, but the second treatment has been kept as brief as practicable and cross
referenced to that volume. Since the discussion of movements, training, and
supply activities can be better understood if the reader has some knowledge of
the background of the Transportation Corps, its relations with other agencies,
and the broad policies of the Chief of Transportation, these aspects of the
Transportation Corps story are reviewed briefly in the introduction.

Valuable information and opinions have been obtained from officers and
civilian experts who were on the staff of the Chief of Transportation during the

ix
war and were still accessible for interviews while this volume was in prepara-
tion. The assistance of those who have contributed personally or through their
writings, and whose names therefore appear in the footnotes, is gratefully
acknowledged. It must be emphasized, however, that the author bears
responsibility for interpretations of fact and any inadvertent errors or omissions.
The statistics used in this book have been drawn so far as possible from
compilations prepared in the Office of the Comptroller of the Army for the
statistical volume to be published in this series. Special credit is due Mr. George
M. Adams of that office, who by recourse to the original sources has done a
thorough job of verifying, correcting, and amplifying the statistics compiled in
the Office of the Chief of Transportation during the war. Mr. George R. Powell
of the same office has given valuable assistance in the presentation of statistical
data and the preparation of graphic charts.
Special thanks are also due Leo J. Meyer, Colonel, Transportation Corps
Reserve, Deputy Chief Historian, who read the manuscript and offered helpful
suggestions in the light of his wartime experience with Army transportation,
and to Marie Premauer, who aided substantially in locating source material
and verifying citations in addition to typing the manuscript. Helen McShane
Bailey carried out the final editing, Allen R. Clark copy edited the manuscript,
and Margaret E. Tackley selected and prepared the photographs.

Washington, D. C. CHESTER WARDLOW


7 June 1954
Contents
Chapter Page
INTRODUCTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3

I. ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES ... 11


Nature and Volume of the Traffic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Working Arrangements With the Carriers . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Army Policies a n d Procedures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25
Mobilization and Conservation of Railroad Equipment . . . . . . . . 35
Special Troop Trains . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
Official and Furlough Travel on Regular Trains . . . . . . . . . . 58
Movement o f Patients . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70
Prisoners of War and Enemy Aliens . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77
A J o b Well Done . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81

IL TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS . . 84


Categories o f Troops Moved . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 86
Troopships a n d Sailing Schedules . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 89
T h e Ports o f Embarkation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99
Movement t o t h e Ports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105
Troop Staging at the Ports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109
Embarkation Procedures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 125
Troopship Administration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 136
The Liberty Ship as a Troop Carrier. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 145
Movement o f Organizational Equipment. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 148
Joint Use of Troopships by the Armed Services . . . . . . . . . . . 161
A Test of Method and Efficiency . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 164

III. REDEPLOYMENT A N D REPATRIATION . . . . . . . . . . 167


Return Traffic Before V-E Day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 167
Preparations f o r Redeployment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 173
Redeployment Between V-E Day and V-J Day . . . . . . . . . . . 182
Repatriation After the Surrender of Japan . . . . . . . . . . . . . 197
Evacuation of Patients From Oversea Theaters . . . . . . . . . . . 212
Transportation o f Soldiers' Dependents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 231
Repatriation of the War Dead . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 237
Results Under Pressure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 239

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Chapter Page
IV. FREIGHT MOVEMENTS IN THE UNITED STATES . . . . 241
Characteristics of Army Freight Traffic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 243
Distribution of Freight Among the Carriers . . . . . . . . . . . . 248
Routing a n d Related Practices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 255
Control of Traffic Flow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 264
Transit Storage Operations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 281
Mobilization and Conservation of Freight Cars . . . . . . . . . . . 295
Consolidated C a r Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 305
Freight Rates and Classifications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 316
The Measure of Accomplishment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 326

V . OVERSEA FREIGHT MOVEMENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . 327


Analysis of Outbound Freight Traffic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 330
Regulation of Oversea Supply Movements . . . . . . . . . . . . . 335
Transshipment of Cargo at the Ports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 357
Shipment of Ammunition and Explosives . . . . . . . . . . . . . 376
Packing, Marking, Documentation, and Security . . . . . . . . . . 391
Adjustments at the End of Hostilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 405
The Return Cargo Movement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 408
International A i d Shipments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 410
Theater Requirements Met. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 417

V I . MILITARY A N D TECHNICAL TRAINING . . . . . . . . . 419


Distribution o f Training Responsibilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . 420
Schooling for Officers and Officer Candidates . . . . . . . . . . . . 425
Troop Units for the Operation of Oversea Ports . . . . . . . . . . 431
Troop Units for Military Railways . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 438
Crews for Smalt Boats and Amphibious Trucks . . . . . . . . . . . 442
Other Types o f Units. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 449
Cadres, Fillers, and Replacements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 451
Civilian Schooling f o r Specialists. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 455
Final Inspection of Units . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 457
Review of Training P r o b l e m s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 460

VII. THE SUPPLY PROGRAM AND ITS E X E C U T I O N . . . . . . 462


Scope of the Responsibility . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 462
The Headquarters and Field Organizations . . . . . . . . . . . . 465
Setting Up the Supply Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 472
Contracting Procedures and Aid to Contractors . . . . . . . . . . . 481
Production Schedules a n d Controls . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 490
Maintenance a n d Spare Parts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 499
Progress i n Technical Matters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 507
Summary of Successes and Failures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 513

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Chapter Page
VIII. OBSERVATIONS A N D CONCLUSIONS . . . . . . . . . . . 517

BIBLIOGRAPHICAL NOTE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 526

GUIDE T O FOOTNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 529

GLOSSARY O F TECHNICAL TERMS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 531

LIST O F ABBREVIATIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 534

INDEX . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 543

Tables
No.
1. Army Passengers Moved by Commercial Rail and Bus in Organized
Groups on Routings Provided by the Central Routing Authority in
Washington: December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . 30
2. Analysis of Army Passenger Traffic Moved by Rail in Organized Groups
on Routings Provided by Central Routing Authority in Washington:
December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30
3. Railroad Cars Used by the Army in Moving Organized Groups and
Their Impedimenta Routed by the Central Routing Authority in
Washington: December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . 37
4. Passenger Train Cars Owned or Leased by the Carriers at the End of Each
Year: 1940-1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
5. Army Reservation Bureau Activity: April 1943-December 1945 . . . . 65
6. Operations of Army Hospital Cars and Medical Kitchen Cars: 1944-1946. 71
7. Classification of Troops Embarked at U.S. Ports of Embarkation for
Oversea Commands: May 1944-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . 88
8. Percentage of Troops Embarked From U.S. Ports in Vessels Under British
and U.S. Control: May 1944-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . 89
9. Passengers Embarked by the Principal Army Ports: December 1941-
December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100
10. Passengers Embarked by the Army for the Several Oversea Areas: Decem-
b e r 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101
11. Time Spent at the Staging Areas by Troops Embarked at New York
During 1944 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 112
12. Capacities of Troop Staging Areas and Intransit Troops Staged: 1-28
January 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113
13. Army Hospital Ships Entering Service During World War II . . . . . 219
14. Patients Evacuated From Overseas by Water and Debarked at Army Ports
i n t h e United States: 1943-1945. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 224
15. Percentage of Patients Debarked by the Army From Troopships, Hospital
Ships, a n d Aircraft: 1943-1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 225

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No. Page
16. Freight Shipped on War Department Bills of Lading by Army Procuring
Services and Commanders of Troop Organizations: December 1941-
December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 242
17. Means of Transport Used for Freight Moved on War Department Bills of
Lading in the Zone of Interior: December 1941-December 1945 . . . 249
18. Carloads of Freight Released by Traffic Control Division for Shipment to
Ports: July 1943-June 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 275
19. Carloads of Export Freight Unloaded by the Railroads at U.S. Ports:
1939-1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 281
20. Warehouse, Shed, and Open Storage Space at Holding and Reconsignment
Points: 3 1 M a y 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 288
21. Percentage of Filled, Booked, and Free Space at Holding and Reconsign-
ment Points o n Designated Dates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 290
22. Short Tons of Freight Handled In and Out of the Holding and Recon-
signment Points: 1942-1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 291
23. Average Tons Per Car Shipped on War Department Bills of Lading by the
Several Shipping Agencies: December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . 305
24. Tons of Less-Than-Carload Freight Consolidated by the Army-Navy
Consolidating Stations: July 1942-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . 310
25. Annual Savings Through Rate Adjustment and Classification Activities
of t h e Traffic Control Division . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 325
26. Tons of Cargo Shipped by the Army by Water From the Zone of Interior
to the Several Oversea Areas: December 1941-December 1945 . . . 328
27. Tons of Cargo Shipped to Oversea Destinations by the Principal Army
Ports: December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 332
28. Tons of Cargo Shipped by Water to Oversea Destinations by the Respec-
tive Procuring Services: December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . 333
29. Aircraft Dispatched to the Army Air Forces Overseas, by Sea and by Air,
Crated and Uncrated: January 1942-July 1945 . . . . . . . . . . 365
30. Army Aircraft Transported Overseas Under the Cognizance of the Com-
mittee on Aircraft Transportation: March 1943-April 1945 . . . . . 366
31. Motor Vehicles Transported to the Oversea Commands: January 1943-
June 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 370
32. Special Army Piers and Backup Storage Facilities for Export Ammunition
a n d Explosives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 381
33. Army-Procured Ammunition and High Explosives Shipped Overseas From
Army-Controlled Piers at U.S. Ports: December 1941-August 1945 . . 390
34. Cargo Returned From Overseas and Discharged at Army Ports in the
United States: 1942-1946 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 410
35. Port Units in Oversea Areas: 31 March 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . 436
36. Transportation Corps Troop Units Activated During World War II ... 437
37. Troops of Other Services Trained at Transportation Corps Installations:
1 August 1942-1 September 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 452
38. Estimated Value of Transportation Corps Equipment and Supplies
Accepted: Calendar Years 1942-1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 466

xiv
No. Page
39. Budget Estimates for Transportation Corps Equipment and Supplies: Fiscal
Years 1942-1946 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 467
40. Quantities of Major Items of Transportation Equipment Constructed and
Accepted in the Zone of Interior . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 502

Charts
1. Army Passengers Moved Monthly by Rail and Bus in Organized Groups
on Routings Provided by the Central Routing Authority in Washington:
December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
2. Revenue Passenger-Miles Accomplished in Pullman-Operated Sleeping
Cars a n d Parlor Cars: 1939-1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41
3. Passengers Embarked Monthly by the Army at U.S. Ports for Oversea
Destinations: December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . 98
4. Passengers Embarked by the Army at U.S. Ports for the Several Oversea
Areas: December 1941-December 1945. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102
5. Forecast of Troop Redeployment, Prepared by the Chief of Transporta-
tion, as of 11 July 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 198
6. Passengers Debarked Monthly by the Army at U.S. Ports From Oversea
Commands: 1943-1946. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 206
7. Passengers Debarked by the Army at the Respective U.S. Ports: 1945-
1946. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 207
8. Freight Moved Monthly by Rail and Other Domestic Carriers on War
Department Bills of Lading: December 1941-December 1945 . . . . 254
9. Monthly Tonnage of Less-Than-Carload Freight Consolidated by the
Army-Navy Consolidating Stations: July 1942-December 1945. ... 311
10. Army Cargo Shipped Monthly From the Zone of Interior to Oversea
Destination: December 1941-December 1945 . . . . . . . . . . . 329
11. Basic Plan for Filling Requisitions From Oversea Commands for Army
Service Forces Supplies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 344
12. Army-Procured Ammunition and High Explosives Loaded at Army-
Controlled Piers for Delivery Overseas: December 1941-August 1945 . 391

Illustrations
Specially Designed Government-Owned Troop Sleepers . . . . . . . . . 23
80th Division Troops Arriving at Camp Forrest . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36
Planning Routings and Assignments of Rail E q u i p m e n t . . . . . . . . . . 45
Preparing Food in a Converted Baggage-Kitchen Car . . . . . . . . . . 52
New Troop Kitchen Car Equipped With Modern Facilities . . . . . . . . 53
Special Reservation Bureau for Military P e r s o n n e l . . . . . . . . . . . . 66
N e w Self-Contained Army Hospital C a r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72

xv
Page
Three Types of Troop Transports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92
Training Facilities a t Camp Stoneman. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 118
Staging Area Recreational Facilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122
Individual Equipment Ready To Be Carried . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126
Army Nurses Entraining at Camp Kilmer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 128
Troops Leaving Camp Myles Standish. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 129
Night Embarkation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 133
Red Cross Workers Waving to Troops . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 134
Crowded Accommodations Aboard a Troop Transport . . . . . . . . . . 140
Impromptu Entertainment Aboard Ship . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 142
Processing Troop Equipment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 153
German Prisoners of War Debarking at a U.S. Port . . . . . . . . . . . 168
U S S Wakefield Landing Troops . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 172
USS West Point Embarking Troops at Naples . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 184
86th Division Troops Arriving at New York . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 185
The Queen Mary Arriving at New York . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 186
U.S. Army Hospital Ship St. Mihiel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 214
USS Comfort Off Los Angeles Harbor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 223
Ward Room on the Army Troopship Monterey . . . . . . . . . . . . . 228
Dispensary o n t h e Monterey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 229
Litters Ready T o Receive Patients . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 230
Engineer Pontons Loaded o n Flatcars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 246
76-mm. G u n Motor Carriages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 247
Locomotives Shipped as Railway F r e i g h t . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 270
Holding a n d Reconsignment Point . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 284
Outdoor Storage Space . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 293
Two 2-Ton Trucks Loaded on Each Flatcar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 300
Sixteen -Ton Trucks Loaded on a Flatcar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 301
T h e Consolidated C a r Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 308
Maj. Gen. Homer M. Groninger and Maj. Gen. William M. Goodman . . . 341
Crated Freight Loaded on the SS William S. Clark . . . . . . . . . . . . 360
Ten Railroad Tank Cars on the Forward Deck . . . . . . . . . . . . . 361
Transporting Aircraft o n Deck . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 367
Mail on Trucks at the San Francisco Port of Embarkation . . . . . . . . 376
Sorting Mail at the New York Port of Embarkation . . . . . . . . . . . 377
Special Explosives Loading P i e r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 385
Barricaded Storage Track . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 386
U.S.-Built Broad-Gauge Locomotives for the USSR . . . . . . . . . . . 413
Maj. Gen. Frederick Gilbreath . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 427
Training Transportation Officers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 429
Port Companies i n Training . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 434
Training Troops for the Military Railway Service . . . . . . . . . . . . 443
Amphibian Truck Company Troops in T r a i n i n g . . . . . . . . . . . . . 447
Port Company T r o o p s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 458
Troops Practice Going Over the Side . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 459

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Page
U.S.-Built Locomotives f o r Service Overseas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 464
Vessels Procured by the Transportation C o r p s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 474
Boats for Harbor and Inshore Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 487
Seagoing Steel Barge Under Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 500
Revolving Floating Crane . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 501
Processing a n d Crating Shop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 506
Marine Rope i n Storage . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 507
Illustrations are from the files of the Department of Defense except for the
following:

Southern Pacific Railroad: page 23.


Santa Fe Railroad: pages 52, 53.
U.S. Maritime Commission: page 92 (middle).
Association of American Railroads: page 270.
Life Photo, Peter Stackpole: page 300.
American Locomotive Company: page 464.

xvii
THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS
MOVEMENTS,
TRAINING, AND SUPPLY
Introduction
One of the facts stamped indelibly on arose in the minds of Allied leaders
the minds of military men by World War whether a sufficiently large fleet of troop
II is that transportation plays a key role and cargo vessels could be built up to
in global warfare. In a conflict fought on meet the requirements of victory in a
foreign soil, success is absolutely dependent multifront war. Such a fleet was achieved
on the number of soldiers and the quan- nevertheless through the unprecedented
tity of matriel that can be moved to the performance of the United States in con-
oversea commands and the timeliness structing new vessels, the increasingly
with which they are delivered. effective Allied campaign waged against
The primary consideration is trans- the U-boat, and the economies effected by
oceanic transportation, for in wartime the bringing virtually all shipping available
capacity needed to move troops and cargo to the Western Allies under the control of
far exceeds the capacity required for the British and U.S. Governments and
peacetime traffic. But traffic within the closely co-ordinating the operations of the
zone of interior also expands rapidly two pools. The shipping situation began
under a war economy, and means must to improve perceptibly in the spring of
be found for handling military move- 1943; yet up to the time of Germany's sur-
ments promptly while at the same time render there never was a surplus of ves-
accommodating essential civilian traffic. sels. In fact, there never was enough
In the oversea areas where the forces come shipping to satisfy those who were direct-
to grips with the enemy, the ports of entry ing the expanding Allied war effort.
and the inland lines of communication Although excellent results in the effec-
must be kept operative, notwithstanding tive employment of the Allied cargo fleets
the efforts of the enemy to destroy the fa- were accomplished through the co-ordi-
cilities and the uncertain value of local nating work of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,
civilian labor. the Combined Chiefs of Staff, and the
The shipping problem was an especially Combined Shipping Adjustment Board,
vital one in World War II, as in the pre- 1
This brief explanation of the background of the
vious great conflict, because while the Transportation Corps, the fundamental problems that
Allies were heavily dependent upon ocean confronted the Chief of Transportation, and the
establishment that functioned under his command is
transport, Germany was not. The Ger- essentially a recapitulation of information presented
mans, who under the Allied plan of strat- in Chester Wardlow, The Transportation Corps: Respon-
egy were to be defeated before the war sibilities, Organization, and Operations, UNITED
STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II (Washing-
effort was turned fully against Japan, ton, 1951). Many of the problems and relationships
struck heavy blows at Allied shipping in will be referred to again in the last chapter of this
the Atlantic, the Caribbean, and the volume, where some observations and conclusions re-
garding the activities and accomplishments of the
Mediterranean. Their submarines were Transportation Corps in connection with movements,
so effective for a time that serious doubts training, and supply will be presented.
4 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

individual vessels were not always used to States should become a belligerent. The
capacity. During the early years of the Army actually began turning over its
war when the production of military sup- transports to the Navy in the spring of
plies in the United States was lagging, 1941, but it soon became apparent that
sufficient cargo was not always delivered the Navy was not in a position to provide
tothe ports to fill the ships that were enlisted crews for a large number of mer-
destined for low-priority theaters. Even chant vessels because of the heavy de-
when matriel was available at depots, mand for combatant crews. Soon after
camps, and manufacturing plants, the Pearl Harbor, therefore, the two services
process of assembling at the ports highly agreed that the Army should man and
diversified cargoes from many sources in operate the vessels that it owned or con-
such a manner as to avoid port congestion trolled under bareboat charter and call
and yet have the cargoes ready for load- directly on the U.S. Maritime Commis-
ing in accordance with theater priorities sion for the allocation of such additional
and convoy schedules was a complicated vessels as it might require. During the en-
one, and some supplies did not arrive as suing year efforts were made to achieve
planned either because of late shipment an arrangement under which either the
or because of unexpectedly long time in Navy or the Army would control all mili-
transit. The preponderance of bulky and tary shipping, since that was recognized
light items over compact and heavy items as more economical than the operation of
in Army cargoes frequently made it im- separate fleets, but the two departments
possible for the ports of embarkation to could not agree on a plan. The bulk of the
load vessels to their dead-weight capac- shipping was therefore operated by agents
ities, even though their cargo spaces were of the War Shipping Administration,
full. which took over the operating responsibil-
The most serious waste of shipping ities of the Maritime Commission in
came about through holding cargo vessels February 1942, and the vessels were allo-
idle in the theaters. While such detentions cated to the Army and the Navy in ac-
sometimes were caused by unforeseen cordance with their requirements. Under
military developments, too often they subsequent agreements the Navy manned
were attributable to the failure of theater a considerable number of vessels that
commanders to keep the tonnages that were to be employed by the Army in the
they sought to have delivered at particu- forward areas, and the two services freely
lar ports within the capacities of the ports interchanged ship space for both troops
to receive, or to the deliberate use of vessels and cargo moving between the zone of in-
as floating warehouses. This problem be- terior and the theaters.
came especially acute in the fall of 1944, The Maritime Commission was the
and it was not cleared up until the Presi- agency designated by the President to
dent peremptorily directed the Joint procure the additional shipping required
Chiefs of Staff to bring the situation under for the war effort. Its achievement in de-
control. veloping new shipyards and expanding
According to prewar plans the Navy old ones to produce a total of 55,000,000
was to operate all ocean-going vessels dead-weight tons of new vessels was out-
needed by the armed forces if the United standing. Since most of these vessels were
INTRODUCTION 5

intended for military use, close collabora- the number of ships the WSA allocated to
tion was necessary between the military transport lend-lease cargoes and to sup-
authorities and the Maritime Commission port the British import program, but the
to insure that the right balance was main- policies governing these allocations were
tained between troop capacity, dry cargo set by the President and the WSA had
capacity, and bulk oil capacity. During little latitude in carrying them out.
the latter part of the war, with extensive The most acute disagreement between
amphibious operations against the Jap- the WSA and the Army came to a head
anese in prospect, many specialized vessels in December 1942, when the civilian
were built to transport troops and cargoes shipping agency obtained an order from
in assault actions. The Joint Chiefs of Staff the President directing it to assume con-
represented the armed forces in determin- trol of the loading of military cargoes at
ing military shipping requirements. In U.S. ports. The purpose of the order was
order to facilitate collaboration a repre- to utilize ship capacities more fully by
sentative of the Maritime Commission loading a mixture of military and lend-
was designated an associate member of lease cargoes, thus obtaining a better bal-
the Joint Military Transportation Com- ance of light and heavy items. The Army
mittee, which worked out programs to and the Navy saw serious objections to
provide the numbers and types of vessels placing the loading of military freight in
required to support future military under- the hands of a large number of civilian
takings. Because adequate shipping was a agents of the WSA and were successful in
prerequisite to victory, the shipbuilding having the order shelved. The Army
program was given a high priority in the recognized the merit of the War Shipping
allocation of steel and other scarce ma- Administration's objective, however, and
terials and components. arranged to co-operate with that agency
Since the Army depended heavily on more fully in mixing military and lend-
the War Shipping Administration (WSA) lease shipments.
for the allocation of ships to carry its The domestic carriers were required
troops and cargoes overseas and to move under the Interstate Commerce Act to
them between bases within the theaters, give military traffic precedence over all
the working arrangements between the other types of traffic upon demand of the
Army Chief of Transportation and the President. No such formal demand was
War Shipping Administration were of made, but there was general recognition
high importance. After an unsatisfactory of the fact that military traffic should not
start, during a period when procedures be delayed. The railroads, which carried
were being worked out and the supply of the bulk of the Army's personnel and
vessels was critically short, this relation- freight, worked in very close co-operation
ship developed into a very successful col- with the Chief of Transportation and took
laboration. On the operating level, where extraordinary measures to move Army
ships and cargoes were matched, an effi- shipments promptly and to expedite them
cient working arrangement was achieved. when necessary. Transportation Corps
The Army frequently did not get the officers concerned with troop and freight
number of vessels it asked for, and it some- movements frequently complained of de-
times complained vigorously regarding layed deliveries and unsuitable equip-
6 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

ment, but they recognized that the rail- that which was provided by the railroads
roads were confronted with severe wartime in their own interest. Floating equipment
operating problems and with an un- and marine supplies were procured sepa-
precedented volume of civilian and mili- rately and little information was ex-
tary traffic. changed. During the war considerable
There was a less sympathetic attitude progress was made in the orderly alloca-
toward the Office of Defense Transporta- tion of vessels to meet strategic needs, the
tion (ODT), which the President estab- joint use of ships and ship repair facilities,
lished soon after Pearl Harbor to exercise the harmonization of marine procurement
a broad control over all domestic trans- programs, and the reduction of duplicate
portation. The Chief of Transportation supply shipments to the theaters, but at
felt that the ODT was not sufficiently the end of hostilities separate steamship
aggressive in arranging for the construction services were still being maintained and
of additional rail and motor equipment to virtually nothing had been accomplished
meet the wartime need, and that it was to synchronize domestic troop and supply
too slow in curtailing regular railway movements or to eliminate duplicate port
passenger services in order to make avail- operations. The traditional independence
able more adequate transportation facili- of the Army and the Navy, the fact that
ties for troops. The Director of Defense the control of Army shipping operations
Transportation, on the other hand, cen- and inland traffic movements was more
sured the armed forces for their unwilling- centralized than was the case with the
ness to allow a larger amount of scarce Navy, and the difficulty of adopting new
materials to be diverted from the military procedures while working under wartime
programs to the construction of transpor- pressures limited the co-operation that
tation equipment for domestic services. the two services could develop after the
When the war began there was a nota- war had started.
ble absence of established methods of co- The fact that the Army transportation
operation between the Army and the service, established in March 1942 and
Navy. Aside from the plan to place all converted into the Transportation Corps
military shipping under naval operation in the following July, was a wartime crea-
in the event of wara plan that was not tion had a definite influence on its rela-
carried outvirtually nothing had been tions with other elements of the War
done to co-ordinate the transportation ac- Department. Aside from the necessity of
tivities of the two services. Agreement was developing an adequate organization in
even lacking as to the assignment and the face of wartime manpower shortages
equipment of vessels for joint amphibious and establishing procedures to govern all
operations. The Naval Transportation phases of the wartime transportation ac-
Service and the Army Transport Service tivity, the Chief of Transportation had to
were being operated entirely independ- define and defend his position as the chief
ently and were competing with each other transportation officer of the new Services
for additional ships. Separate port estab- of Supply (later renamed Army Service
lishments were being maintained. There Forces).
was no co-ordination of domestic move- World War I had demonstrated the
ments of personnel and supplies beyond need for a unified Army transportation
INTRODUCTION 7

service, and strong recommendations were the Army's oversea traffic. He was re-
made for the continuance of such a service sponsible also for the training of troops
after the war was over. But the hope that and the procurement of equipment and
there would be no more great wars and supplies required for marine and rail
the desire to cut government spending led operations in the oversea commands. The
Congress to disregard this recommenda- Chief of Transportation did not have con-
tion when enacting the National Defense trol of traffic by air, which was regulated
Act of 1920. As a result, World War II by the Army Air Forces (AAF); he found
found transportation responsibilities scat- it necessary to accord to the AAF a large
tered among several Army agenciesthe degree of independence in controlling its
Supply Division (G-4) of the General domestic freight traffic by surface car-
Staff, The Quartermaster General, the riers. The design and procurement of
Chief of Engineers, the Chief of Ord- motor vehicles for oversea highway serv-
nance, and the ports of embarkation. The ices remained with the Chief of Ordnance,
creation of a Chief of Transportation in the and the organization of troop units for the
War Department reorganization of 9 operation of motor vehicles as well as the
March 1942 did not mean that all trans- establishment of training programs and
portation functions were placed under his doctrine for such troops remained with
control, but it did provide greater concen- The Quartermaster General.
tration of responsibility than had existed The second objectiveunbroken con-
previously, and the scope of his authority trol of troop and supply movements from
was extended as the war progressed.2 domestic origins to the oversea ports of
In assuming the office of Chief of Trans- dischargewas attained with but one ex-
portation, Brig. Gen. (later Maj. Gen.) ception, that is, movements by air, which
Charles P. Gross had two broad objec- were regulated by the Army Air Forces.
tivesto establish a service that would Troop and freight movements by rail,
embrace as many of the transportation motor, or water to the ports of embarka-
functions of the War Department as cir- tion and thence overseas by water were
cumstances would permit, and to main- under the control of the Chief of Trans-
tain unbroken control of troop and supply portation at all points. Several proposals
movements from their points of origin at were made that would have disrupted this
camps, depots, and factories in the zone of control, but the Chief of Transportation
interior until their arrival at the oversea was able to block them. He held con-
ports of debarkation. There obviously was sistently to the position that continuity of
a close interrelationship between these control was necessary to enable his or-
two purposes. ganization to co-ordinate movements to
The first objective was largely but not the ports of embarkation with ship sched-
completely accomplished. After the first ules, and thus assure the effective loading
year of the war the Chief of Transporta- and prompt dispatch of the vessels as well
tion was responsible for all arrangements as the observance of theater priorities.
with the commercial rail, highway, and
2
water carriers in the zone of interior, and Although from April to July 1942 this official
was known as the Chief of Transportation Service,
for the provision of shipping and the oper- the title Chief of Transportation is used uniformly in
ation of ports of embarkation adequate for this history.
8 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

The Chief of Transportation held a the technical and operating aspects of


unique position in the Army Service Forces transportation; or rather, he believed that
(ASF) organization because of the breadth his organization would not be fully and
of the staff responsibilities that he had in properly performing its mission if it did
addition to technical and operating re- not bring its practical knowledge of trans-
sponsibilities. The extent of his staff func- portation to bear on the staff work pertain-
tions was the natural result of the position ing to movements. Lt. Gen. Brehon B.
that the Transportation Corps had in the Somervell, commanding the Army Service
military structureall other arms and Forces, recognized the merits of the posi-
services depended on it for mass move- tions taken by both parties to the argu-
ments of men and materiel within the ment, and he sought to strike a practical
zone of interior and to the oversea com- balance between the two rather than to
mands, and to a considerable extent for rule arbitrarily against one or the other.
movements within the oversea areas. This This was fairly well accomplished, both
meant that from the beginning of strategic sides yielding on some points.
planning the Chief of Transportation, hav- The fact that the office of the Chief of
ing knowledge of the means of transporta- Transportation was not established until
tion likely to be available and their capa- March 1942 affected not only the Chief of
bilities under various circumstances, held Transportation's relations with other ele-
the key to many important military deci- ments of the War Department but also his
sions. It meant also that his concurrence relations with the theater commanders.
was a prerequisite to any adjustments that He had no direct responsibility for trans-
might have to be made in strategic plans portation operations within the theaters,
because of unforeseen developments. The but he was responsible for furnishing the
Chief of Transportation built up a strong oversea commanders with capable trans-
Planning Division to aid him in perform- portation officers, troop units adequately
ing his staff functions, and he firmly and trained for transportation tasks, and ma-
successfully opposed a proposal put for- rine, port, and rail equipment correctly
ward in the fall of 1943 to transfer that designed for theater needs. Starting out
division to ASF headquarters. with small resources and very limited ad-
The staff functions that the Chief of vance planning, the Chief of Transporta-
Transportation performed and his insist- tion found the early problems in fulfilling
ence on maintaining direct contact with these responsibilities formidable. Beyond
the Operations Division (OPD) of the the difficulties encountered in supplying
General Staff in regard to the oversea personnel and materiel, the new Chief of
troop movements that OPD had ordered Transportation was handicapped by an
or was planning to order brought him into early lack of standing with the theater
conflict with the ASF Director of Opera- commanders. It took time to acquaint
tions, Maj. Gen. LeRoy Lutes, on numer- them with his place in the scheme of
ous occasions. This is understandable since things, the ways in which he could be of
the latter was charged with co-ordinating help to them, and the ways in which they
all ASF activities pertaining to troop and could co-operate with him. General Gross
supply movements. But the Chief of Trans- devoted much time and energy to building
portation was unwilling to be confined to up a satisfactory entente with the com-
INTRODUCTION 9

manders of the forces overseas, and in the Searsport, Maine), and the three subports
end he felt that his efforts had paid good (Portland, Oregon; Prince Rupert, British
dividends. A more difficult problem was Columbia; and Juneau, Alaska), which
that of persuading some theater com- were active at the end of 1944, employed
manders to accord their chief transporta- more than 171,000 military and civilian
tion officers sufficient authority to enable personnel. The New York installation
them to function effectively. On this point alone employed more than 55,000. The
there was still room for improvement in activities of the ports of embarkation were
the European theater in late 1944, and a multifarious; they included the operation
satisfactory situation was not obtained in of shipping terminals, the operation and
the Southwest Pacific until the summer of maintenance of Army-owned and char-
1945. tered transports and harbor boats, the
For the fulfillment of his responsibilities repair and conversion of vessels, the oper-
in the zone of interior the Chief of Trans- ation of staging areas for the housing and
portation built up, in addition to a head- processing of intransit troops, the operation
quarters organization of about 3,100 of storage and processing facilities for
military and civilian personnel, an exten- equipment and supplies, the regulation of
sive field establishment, which in the the flow of troops and supplies to the ports
winter of 1945 embraced personnel (not in accordance with the ports' ability to
counting personnel assigned by service transship them and with due regard to
commands and attached troop units) total- movement orders and theaters requisi-
ing over 180,000. The headquarters staff tions, and certain training activities. The
dealt chiefly with the establishment of cargo ports and subports had more limited
policies and procedures and the supervi- functions.3
sion of activities in the field. The field Nine zone transportation officers, as
installations were the agencies through representatives of the Chief of Transporta-
which policies and procedures approved tion, supervised a variety of field activities.
in Washington were carried into effect These included holding and reconsign-
either through direct operations, as at the ment points to provide intransit storage
ports of embarkation and the holding and for equipment and supplies destined for
reconsignment points, or through close oversea areas, freight consolidating stations
relationships with the common carriers and distributing agencies to handle less-
and industry, as in the case of the zone than-carload shipments, reservation bu-
transportation offices. The procedures ap- reaus to obtain accommodations on
proved at headquarters were in large meas- regular trains for military personnel, rail-
ure based on the operating experiences of road repair shops for the repair of Army-
the field agencies. owned locomotives and rolling stock, and,
The port installations constituted by far until 1945, such procurement and depot
the largest segment of this field establish- activities as were not carried on directly
ment. The eight ports of embarkation by the Office of the Chief of Transporta-
(Boston, New York, Hampton Roads, tion. The zone transportation offices, the
Charleston, New Orleans, Los Angeles, 3
See Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 95-1 10, for an ex-
San Francisco, and Seattle), the three planation of the different types of port installation
cargo ports (Philadelphia, Baltimore, and and more detailed personnel data.
10 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

district transportation offices, which were adopted by ASF headquarters in 1943


subordinate to the zones, and the port some of the centers where Transportation
agencies (which toward the end of the war Corps troops were trained were operated
became district transportation offices) alsoby the service commands.
represented the Chief of Transportation in A number of field procurement offices
keeping movements of troops and supplies were set up in the fall of 1942 with direct
under observation and in expediting the responsibility to the Chief of Transporta-
flow of traffic when circumstances re- tion. Before the end of the year, however,
4
quired it. field procurement activities, as well as
The training of officers and enlisted depot activities, were placed under the
men constituted a third group of field supervision of the zone transportation offi-
activities. In the early months of the war cers. This arrangement continued until
all such training was given at the ports of near the end of the war; then, with the
embarkation, but the greatly increased procurement program largely accom-
requirements soon necessitated the estab- plished, these activities were detached from
lishment of special schools and training the zones and were placed under the direct
centers. Although the Chief of Transporta- supervision of the Chief of Transportation.
tion believed that he should command all 4
For a fuller discussion of transportation zones,
such training installations, under a policy see Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 111-23.
CHAPTER I

Army Passenger Traffic


in the United States
The tremendous upsurge in military services were eliminated or curtailed and
passenger traffic that took place during efforts were made to obtain a voluntary
the war was apparent to everyone who abstinence from pleasure travel, no posi-
traveled. The difficulty of obtaining seats tive restriction was placed on the citizen's
in railway coaches and buses, the scarcity right to use the services that were offered.
of sleeping car accommodations, and the As a result, the 1944 railway passenger
throngs of uniformed men and women en- traffic, measured in passenger-miles, was
countered in transportation terminals 334 percent greater than the annual aver-
were unmistakable evidences. Yet the age for the years 1935-39, and intercity
ordinary traveler had no contact with the motorbus traffic was 192 percent greater.
most significant part of the military traf- The second basic fact is that the carriers
ficthat which moved directly from were able to make only a limited increase
installation to installation in special trains. in services after the war began. The build-
Nor could he have any conception of the ing of new equipment and structures was
extent and complexity of the problems severely limited by the scarcity of mate-
involved in moving large numbers of mili- rials and the higher priority given to mili-
tary personnel in a prompt, orderly, and tary items. Maintaining adequate trans-
economical manner by common carriers portation operating personnel was made
and in making the available railway and difficult by the manpower requirements of
motor equipment perform maximum the armed forces and the inducements
service. offered by other industries. Because of
In approaching the discussion of the these limitations on the ability of the car-
Army's passenger traffic, two facts must riers to increase their services, the in-
be borne in mind. The first is that civilian creased demand for passenger accommo-
as well as military travel increased as a dations had to be met chiefly by a more
result of the war. The booming industries intensive use of existing facilities.1
called for increased business travel, and
the greater income of wage earners gave Nature and Volume of the Traffic
rise to more travel for personal reasons.
The rationing of gasoline and tires caused Army passenger traffic fell into several
many owners to lay up their automobiles categories, each involving special prob-
and use public transportation instead. Al- 1
Wardlow, The Transportation Corps: Responsibilities,
though some of the less essential passenger Organisation, and Operations, pp. 309-49.
12 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

lems and requiring special procedures. economy measure, transportation officers


There were the larger organized troop in the field were no longer required to
movements, usually involving units and report the number of passengers moved on
their organic equipment, which for the requests that they had issued; hence the
most part moved in special trains. There only data covering the entire war period
were the smaller organized groups that pertain to passengers moved in the organ-
traveled chiefly on the regular rail and ized groups routed by the central routing
bus services. Military patients being trans- authority in Washington. During the
ferred between hospitals or from ports of forty-nine-month period from December
embarkation to hospitals were moved on 1941 through December 1945, such traffic
both regular and special trains. Prisoner- totaled 35,848,700 passengers; the peak
of-war groups for obvious reasons were month was August 1945, when 1,207,100
5
transported chiefly in special trains or spe- passengers were moved. Neither set of
cial cars. The military and civilian per- figures includes the travel of Army per-
sonnel of the Army traveling as individuals sonnel while on furlough or leave, which
on War Department transportation was at the individual's own expense and
requests naturally used the regular serv- by his own arrangement.
ices of the common carriers.2 The same Since complete data for troop travel
was true of most military personnel travel- were not compiled, the exact percentage
ing while on leave or furlough, although of the whole that military traffic consti-
some of this traffic was handled by special tuted is not known, but some indicative
trains. The Army also arranged for the estimates are available. For the year 1943,
travel of military personnel of Allied the Office of Price Administration esti-
nations passing through the United States mated that the uniformed personnel of the
and for the initial movements of persons armed servicesArmy, Navy, Marine
of Japanese descent from the Pacific coast Corps, and Coast Guardconstituted 25.3
for relocation. percent of the total number of passengers
moved (excluding commuter travel) and
The number of military passengers 2
moved by the carriers in World War II far The transportation request is an order on a carrier
to furnish transportation to persons for official travel
exceeded the number moved during any at government expense.
3
earlier period. This was necessarily true During the nineteen-month period May 1917-
because the number of men in uniform November 1918, the railroads moved 8,875,000 pas-
sengers on WD requests on special and regular trains;
was far greater and the plan of training during a corresponding period, December 1941-June
3
required more travel. Specific data are 1943, such passengers numbered 21,754,000. See Rpt,
available for only certain categories of Transportation, Comparative Data, World War I-
World War II, p. 24, prepared by Contl Div OCT,
passengers. During the first eighteen Jul 43, OCT HB MPR.
months of World War IIthat is, through 4
OCT HB Monograph 20, p. 2 and App. I.
May 1943statistics were prepared on all Roughly 83.8 percent of this traffic moved by rail, 16
percent by highway, and 0.2 percent by air and water.
passengers moved by rail, motor, air, and 5
See Table 1 and Chart 1, pp. 30, 31, below. Rout-
water on War Department requests. The ing procedures are explained below, pp. 25-30.
total for that period was 24,490,707, and Groups routed by the central routing authority in
Washington were estimated to constitute between 50
the peak month was October 1942 with and 60 percent of the total traffic moved on WD
4
2,068,533 passengers. Thereafter, as an transportation requests.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 13

that this military traffic accounted for 39.5 Chief of Transportation stated that during
percent of the total passenger-miles accom- the period of heavy traffic in the spring of
6
plished. In September 1943 the Office of 1943 a special troop train was started for
Defense Transportation and the Office of every six minutes in the twenty-four-hour
9
War Information jointly released data in- day.
dicating that, of the total number of pas- The system under which troops were
sengers traveling on regularly scheduled inducted and trained was expensive in
trains and buses (that is, excluding special terms of transportation. In World War I
troop trains and buses), 20 percent con- the typical draftee made three basic
sisted of servicemen and servicewomen in movesfrom home to cantonment, from
uniform traveling under orders or on cantonment to specialized training camp,
leave. Of the remaining 80 percent, it and thence to port of embarkation. In
was estimated that 55 percent represented World War II he made at least five
essential civilian travel and 25 percent movesfrom home to induction station,
nonessential travel.7 and thence to reception center, replace-
ment training center, unit training center,
Carefully worked out techniques and and port of embarkationand, in addi-
procedures were required to get the great- tion, most soldiers were moved to special-
est possible use out of the rail and motor ized training centers and to training
equipment available to the Army. Al- maneuver areas. Induction stations, recep-
though considerable progress had been tion centers, and replacement training
made with such techniques and proce- centers were numerous and scattered. Spe-
dures before the United States entered the cialized training centers were widely dis-
war, much remained to be done to adapt persed, and some training was phased,
them to the large and closely timed move- with each phase taking place at a different
ments that then became frequent. The station. Troops and their equipment fre-
field maneuvers held in 1940 and 1941 quently were transported all the way
gave the Army an opportunity to try out across the continent in order to meet the-
its own procedures and its working ar- 6
rangements with the railroads, and also to Exhibit A-68, before ICC, Ex parte 148, October
23, 1944, reproduced as App. II in OCT HB Mono-
determine how far commercial motor graph 20. As the percentages indicate, the average
vehicles could be used for this purpose. haul for military passengers was longer than that for
The precipitate entry of the United States the traffic as a whole.
7
ODT Press Release 349, 3 Sep 43, OCT HB Topic
into a war involving action in both Atlan- ODT. These figures were released in connection with
tic and Pacific areas put these arrange- the campaign for a voluntary reduction of nonessential
ments and procedures to the acid test. The travel.
8
In the Biennial Report of the Chief of Staff of the
results were gratifying, as General George United States Army, July 1,1941 to June 30,1943 . . . ,
C. Marshall, the Army Chief of Staff, later the Chief of Staff stated that the movement of almost
testified.8 There remained, nevertheless, 600,000 troops and their impedimenta by rail during
the first five weeks of the war had been accomplished
many features to be developed and refined "in an extremely efficient manner." See also, Memo,
in order for the Army to execute the heavy Marshall for the President, 3 Mar 42, sub: Troop and
troop movements of 1943 and 1944 with Cargo Mvmts, WDCSA 370.5.
9
Statement in NBC radio broadcast, based on data
smoothness and efficiency. As an indica- from Military Transportation Section AAR, reported
tion of the size of this undertaking, the in Railway Age, May 15, 1943.
14 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

ater requests for certain types of units land transportation with staging arrange-
promptly, The Passenger Branch in the ments at the ports of embarkation and with
Office of the Chief of Transportation esti- troop transport schedules. The Rail Divi-
mated that men shipped overseas made on sion, headed for a time by Mr. Gustav
the average between six and seven moves Metzman, then by Col. (later Brig. Gen.)
10
at Army expense before sailing. John A. Appleton, and finally by General
Many criticisms were leveled at the McIntyre, represented the Chief of Trans-
Army because of what appeared to be ex- portation in his endeavor to help the rail-
cessive troop movements. These criticisms ways meet their equipment and manpower
originated with other government agen- problems so that adequate services could
cies, railroad officials and shippers, and be maintained. The Highway Division,
soldiers who wanted fewer moves and bet- under the leadership first of Col. Frederick
ter travel accommodations. The Army de- C. Horner and then Col. Lacey V. Mur-
fended its troop movements and system of row, performed a similar service for the
training and, in the beginning, denied that bus operators. The Traffic Control Divi-
unnecessary moves were made. Later, the sion was responsible for arrangements with
Commanding General, Army Service the carriers regarding group and individ-
Forces, and his Chief of Transportation ual travel, for instructing transportation
became convinced that the number of officers in the field concerning their re-
moves could be reduced without military sponsibilities and assisting them when
disadvantage and requested the com- necessary, for the routing of organized
manders of the Army Ground Forces and movements of more than one carload, and
the Army Air Forces to give the subject for controlling special troop movements.
their attention.11 The War Department Under the Chief of Transportation the
also endeavored to eliminate unnecessary day-to-day task of arranging transporta-
official travel by individuals and to reduce tion for and supervising the movement of
group meetings, in line with requests made the Army's passenger traffic was charged
to all government agencies by J. Monroe to the Traffic Control Division, which was
Johnson, the Director of Defense Trans- headed by Mr. (later Brig. Gen.) William
portation, and James F. Byrnes, the J. Williamson. Under The Quartermaster
Director of War Mobilization.12 10
Memo, CofT for C of Adm Svs SOS, 22 Jan 43,
OCT 357 New Orleans; Memo, Sp Sv Div for CofT,
Several officials and divisions in the 11 May 43, OCT 5 1 1 ; Memo, Col Edmund C. R.
Lasher for Gross, 1 Sep 43; Interv with Col I. Sewell
Office of the Chief of Transportation were Morris, 15 Aug 50 (unless otherwise indicated, all in-
concerned with passenger traffic. The terviews were conducted by the author); last two in
Assistant Chief of Transportation for Op- OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass.
11
See Wardlow, op. cit., p. 348. Memo, CG SOS for
erations, Brig. Gen. Robert H. Wylie, had CofT, 20 Jan 43, sub: Use of Rail Trans, OCT 511
an over-all co-ordinating responsibility. Co-ordination of Troop Mvmts; Memo, CG ASF for
The Movements Division, headed first by DCofS USA, 10 Aug 43; Memo, ACofS G-3 for
DCofS, 10 Aug 43; last two in WDCSA 370.5.
Col. (later Brig. Gen.) Andrew F. McIn- 12
Memo, ODT to All Government Agencies, 20
tyre and then by Col. Donald E. Farr, was May 44; WD Memo W 55-44, 27 May 44, sub: Re-
concerned especially with the movement duction of Unnecessary Travel; Ltr, SW to Johnson,
19 Jul 44; Ltr, Actg SW to Byrnes, 1 Feb 45; Memo,
of troops and troop equipment destined for TAG for CG ASF, 5 Feb 45, sub: Curtailment of Pass
oversea areas, and the co-ordination of in- Traf; all in G-4 510.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 15

General, who managed Army traffic dur- to meet the large military requirements.
ing peacetime, this function had been per- Fortunately the railroads, which carried
formed by the Commercial Traffic Branch, the bulk of the Army's passenger traffic,
headed by Capt, (later Col.) Edmund C. were well organized for this purpose. The
R. Lasher. When responsibility for trans- Association of American Railroads, with
portation and traffic was transferred from headquarters in Washington, represented
The Quartermaster General to the Chief lines controlling 97.5 percent of the total
of Transportation in March 1942, the per- railroad mileage. Its Car Service Division,
sonnel of the Commercial Traffic Branch with Warren C. Kendall as manager, ex-
was also transferred and it became the ercised a broad influence over the distri-
foundation on which the Traffic Control bution and employment of the passenger
Division was built. Lasher then became cars owned by those lines. The Military
Williamson's deputy.13 Transportation Section of the Car Service
Division, managed during the greater part
Working Arrangements With the Carriers of the war by Arthur H. Gass and later by
John J. Kelly, was designed to deal exclu-
The collaboration of the common car- sively with the requirements of the armed
riers and the Army was an outstanding forces, and during the war it was conven-
example of team work between private iently located adjacent to the Traffic Con-
industry and government in a national trol Division in the Pentagon. In passenger
emergency. It was especially noteworthy traffic matters the railroads were repre-
because, unlike many other industries that sented by seven territorial passenger asso-
were wholly or partially withdrawn from ciations New England, Trunk Line,
the civilian field in order that their capac- Central, Southern, Southwestern, Western,
ity might be devoted to war work, the and Transcontinentaland by the Inter-
carriers continued to meet an expanding territorial Military Committee on which
civilian demand while also filling the mili- each territorial association was repre-
tary need. The carriers and the Army did sented. This committee, with Hugh W.
not always see eye to eye in regard to oper- Siddall as chairman, maintained head-
ating and traffic matters, but in the major quarters in Chicago and was the channel
endeavormoving troops and military through which most rate and traffic mat-
supplies swiftly and safely to their destina- ters were handled between the Army and
tionsthey achieved a high degree of the railroads.14
understanding and co-operation. The common carriers by bus were not
In his negotiations with the carriers on as fully or effectively organized as the rail-
operating and traffic matters the Chief of roads since they constituted a much newer
Transportation dealt, so far as possible, branch of the transportation industry and
with agencies representing the respective many small operators were concerned
branches of the industry, rather than with only with local business. The National
the individual lines. This not only was ad- 13
Williamson had been general traffic manager of
vantageous from the standpoint of con- a large mail-order house and was one of a number of
ducting negotiations and arriving at uni- civilian experts who were brought into the TC organ-
ization to give it the benefit of their experience with
form agreements, but it also facilitated the transportation and traffic.
pooling of the equipment of many carriers 14
Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 312-14.
16 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

Association of Motor Bus Operators, with grant deductions, applicable to both land-
headquarters in Washington, and the Na- grant and non-land-grant routes, were
tional Bus Traffic Association and National made by the carriers under Section 22 of
Bus Military Bureau, located in Chicago, the Interstate Commerce Act. A few
were convenient channels through which coastwise steamship lines with which the
the Army could negotiate with the opera- railroads had through-booking arrange-
tors, but their memberships were limited ments were parties to both agreements.
and they were much less influential than The Joint Military Passenger Agree-
the corresponding organizations in the ment included separate fare provisions for
rail field. The use of the commercial air- military traffic and nonmilitary traffic.
lines for military passenger traffic was Military traffic embraced chiefly commis-
small enough that no special organizations sioned officers, warrant officers, nurses,
to deal with such traffic were needed.15 and enlisted personnel of the U.S. armed
forces on active duty, and the allowance
The working arrangements regarding on such traffic was 5 percent from the
traffic by rail were incorporated in two commercial one-way fares for all classes of
basic agreements that were negotiated travel between points between which no
annually between the territorial passenger land-grant deductions were applicable,
associations and the armed forces. The and 3 percent from the one-way net fares
Joint Military Passenger Agreement was on routes that were subject to land-grant
the more comprehensive. In addition to deductions. Nonmilitary traffic included
fare reductions (called allowances in the several categories of persons who were not
agreement), it covered arrangements on active military duty but whose trans-
relating to special cars and special trains, portation was paid entirely by the U.S.
the transportation of military baggage armed forces, and the allowance on such
and impedimenta, the transportation of traffic was 5 percent from one-way com-
the bodies of deceased military personnel, mercial fares in all classes.
the use of baggage cars as kitchen cars for The several classes of transportation
troop trains, and the routing of traffic. affected by the fare reductions accorded
The Joint Military Passenger Equaliza- by the Joint Military Passenger Agree-
tion Agreement, which was effective con- ment were designated first class (standard
currently with the Joint Military Passen- sleeper and parlor car), intermediate class
ger Agreement and considered a part of (tourist sleeper), coach class, and mixed
it, committed carriers that were not re- class (combination of coach and sleeper).
quired by law to allow 50 percent land- Since the Army's policy was to accomplish
grant deductions from commercial fares in overnight troop movements in tourist
favor of military passengers to allow equal sleepers rather than in standard sleepers,
deductions on corresponding routes, with 15
16
specified exceptions. The so-called land- OCT HB Monograph 6, pp. 102, 197, 203, 265.
16
The last agreements during the war were JMPA
grant rates, a much controverted subject, 22 and JMPEA 22, both effective 1 July 1945. For the
had their origin in the Land Grant Acts historical background of these agreements, see Com-
by which federal lands were ceded to the ments Prepared by Representatives of the War De-
partment, Navy Department, and Marine Corps,
railroads during their developmental October 15, 1930, on Senate Bill 4447, 71st Cong., 1st
period. The allowances other than land- Sess., OCT HB Topic Mil Pass Agreements.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 17

it benefited from the railroads' agreement standpoint of the railroads was the clause
to accept intermediate-class fares on many that defined the conditions under which
routes west of the Mississippi on which the armed forces might use carriers other
such fares were not ordinarily available. than those parties to the agreement. In
The railroads did not accept the interme- peacetime and for a period after the
diate-class fares east of the Mississippi, but United States began to rearm, this clause
collected the first-class fare for all troops committed the armed forces to using the
moved in sleepers, standard or tourist, services of the railway and coastwise
subject of course to the agreed allow- steamship lines for all movements except
ances.17 when those services were "inadequate to
One of the advantages that the rail- meet the military necessity of the Govern-
roads gained under the Joint Military ment." As long as this clause was in effect,
Passenger Agreement was the privilege of the possibility of moving troops by com-
suggesting the routes on which the traffic -mercial bus or air lines was exceedingly
of the armed forces should move. This limited. Effective 1 July 1941, the clause
enabled them to distribute the traffic on a was modified to permit the armed forces
basis that the carriers accepted as equit- to use motor and air carriers whenever
able. The Joint Military Passenger Equal- they were able, in the judgment of the
ization Agreement enabled the territorial officers arranging the transportation, to
passenger associations, which were respon- provide "more satisfactory service to meet
sible for the satisfactory distribution of the military requirements of the Govern-
such traffic, to perform that function ment." But even under the modified clause
without the complications that would the railroads were in a preferred position
have arisen if it had been necessary to with respect to military traffic.19
take land-grant and non-land-grant fares Fare concessions were the key feature of
into consideration in working out each the Joint Military Passenger Agreement
routing. The equalization agreement also from the Army's standpoint. The Army
eliminated the necessity of routing traffic started negotiations for "greater conces-
on circuitous land-grant routes in order to sions from the railroads soon after the
meet the government's insistence on the emergency began. Whereas the railroads
lowest net fare, and in that respect was always had contended that the routing
advantageous to both the carriers and the privilege was the feature that justified fare
armed forces. To the carriers the routing concessions beyond the land-grant deduc-
privilege was an essential feature of the tions, the Army traditionally had stressed
agreement, and they sometimes referred the volume and character of its traffic as
to it as the justification for the fare allow- the justification for such concessions.
ances that they made. The armed forces, At a conference in December 1940,
however, had the right under the agree- when the renewal of the agreement for the
ments to reject a suggested routing when 17
OCT HB Monograph 21, p. 27; WD CTB 6, 27
it appeared to be unduly circuitous or Jun 44, pars. 3, 4, 5, 6; JMPA 22, Sec. 7(4).
otherwise disadvantageous from a military 18

19
JMPA 22, Sec. 27.
18 JMPA 17, effective 1 Jul 40, Sec. 6, par. 3; JMPA
standpoint.
18, 1 Jul 41, corresponding par. See OCT HB Mono-
Another important feature of the Joint graph 6, pp. 183-93, for circumstances leading to this
Military Passenger Agreement from the change.
18 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

next fiscal year was being discussed, the allowances under the Joint Military Pas-
Army representative requested an increase senger Agreement remained unchanged.
in the allowance on fares affected by land- Before the end of 1945 Congress took ac-
grant deductions from 3 to 12 percent, tion to abolish land-grant deductions, and
and on other fares from 5 to 15 percent. an entirely new military rate agreement
The Army's arguments were that military then had to be negotiated.
traffic had increased many times since the The abolition of land-grant rates came
beginning of the emergency, that this as the culmination of a struggle in which
traffic came to the railroads without the the War Department and the railroads
usual expense of solicitation, and that were on opposite sides. The carriers long
troop movements permitted the use of had contended that the government's
railway cars with an intensity that was grants of land to western and southern
not possible in regular traffic. The carriers lines in the third quarter of the nineteenth
did not accede to this request. They con- century to encourage the extension of rail
tended that, while troop traffic permitted facilities and the settlement of new terri-
them some economies, it also entailed tories no longer justified the deduction of
special arrangements and extraordinary 50 percent from normal charges when
expenses.20 government passengers and freight were
The Chief of Transportation continued hauled. 22 The War Department was
the effort to obtain greater fare allowances reluctant to assume the added transporta-
from the railroads to the end of the war, tion expense that the discontinuance of
but without success. The last move in that the deductions would entail. 23 This atti-
directionmade in September 1945 tude was reflected in the Transportation
was aimed at the situation east of the Act of 1940, which abolished land-grant
Mississippi, where the railroads collected deductions for other types of government
first-class fares for troops moving in either traffic but retained them for "military or
tourist or standard sleepers and where naval property of the United States mov-
land-grant deductions were applicable to ing for military or naval and not for civil
only a limited number of lines. General use," and for "members of the military or
Gross argued that the railroads should naval forces . . . traveling on official
not get a greater revenue from a sleeper duty." 24
carrying soldiers than from one carrying The question of total abolition of land-
civilians. He pointed out that, although grant rates again came before Congress
the Army placed 40 to 50 percent more during the war, and again the War De-
passengers in a car than was possible with partment opposed such action. It cited
civilian traffic, the reduction allowed to 20
OCT HB Monographs 6, pp. 204-07; and 21, pp.
the Army under the Joint Military Pas- 28-31.
21
senger Agreement was only 5 percent. Memo, CofT for Williamson, 5 Sep 45, sub: Pas-
senger Rates for Mil Travel, OCT HB Gross Day File.
He accordingly instructed General Wil- 22
For the railroads' position, see Robert S. Henry,
liamson to undertake a renegotiation of "The Railroad Land Grant Legend in American His-
fares on the basis of that principle.21 Wil- tory Texts," Mississippi Valley Historical Review,
liamson left the Army during the follow- XXXII, September 1945, pp. 177-94.
23
Ltr, Actg SW to Chm House Com on Interstate
ing month, and Gross retired at the end of and Foreign Commerce, 11 Jun 38, G-4/24801-2.
November 1945, up to which time the fare 24
PL 785, 76th Cong., Title III, Pt. II, Sec. 321 (a).
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 19

the favorable financial position of the car- The allowances granted under the
riers resulting from the heavy wartime Joint Military Passenger Agreement ap-
traffic, as well as the huge additional cost plied only to railroad fares, not to space
to the Army, which the Chief of Trans- rates in Pullman cars. The Pullman Com-
portation estimated would be about pany was not a party to this agreement
$200,000,000 on passenger and freight but separately made certain concessions
traffic during a war year. The War De- to the armed forces. It agreed to provide
partment, however, indicated that "at standard sleepers for group movements of
another time and under other conditions" enlisted men when no tourist sleepers
a different situation might obtain, and were available and to accept tourist
when the question came to a decision soon sleeper berth rates in such cases. It per-
after the end of hostilities the department mitted tourist sleepers to operate and
acquiesced.25 The abolition of land-grant tourist berth rates to apply in the eastern
rates, effective 1 October 1946, consider- and southeastern territories, even though
ably simplified the arrangements between there were no regular tourist sleeper serv-
the armed forces and the railroads regard- ices in those territorities. The Pullman
ing transportation charges, and in the Company permitted the drawing rooms
Joint Military Passenger Agreement that of tourist sleepers to be occupied at the
became effective concurrently with the regular berth rates when the cars were
new law, the fare reduction allowed to the being used for military movements. It also
armed forces was 10 percent from com- accepted the berth rate for the shortest
mercial fares in all classes.26 route between two points when troops
Although the armed forces did not ob- were routed over a longer route under the
tain greater percentage allowances on Joint Military Passenger Equalization
railroad passenger fares during the war, Agreement.29
they were successful in adding to the cate- Since the Army aimed to move troops
gories of passengers eligible for the allow- by special trains whenever practicable,
ances.27 The scope of the term "military the conditions under which such arrange-
traffic" was broadened to include enlisted 25
reservists recalled to active duty, certain Ltrs, SW to Chm House Com on Interstate and
Foreign Commerce and Chm Senate Com on Inter-
female personnel of the Medical Depart- state Commerce, 6 Apr 44, AG 500 (6-2-37)(1) Trans
ment of the Army, and members of the by Rail; Memo, CofT for USW, 2 Aug 44, OCT HB
Women's Army Corps. The coverage of Gross Day File; Senate Com on Interstate Commerce
and House Com on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,
the term "nonmilitary traffic" was ex- Hearings on HR 4184, 78th Cong., 2d Sess., March
tended to include (when traveling on 16-23, 1944; Ltr, SW to Chm Senate Com on Inter-
transportation requests of the armed state Commerce, 3 Jul 45; Ltr, SW to Dir Bur of
Budget, 6 Dec 45; last two in AG 500 (26 Mar 45)(1);
forces) retired and discharged military PL 256, 79th Cong., approved 12 Dec 45.
personnel returning to their homes, per- 26
JMPA 23, 1 Oct 46, Sec. 6(1).
27
sonnel of the American Red Cross, officers OCT HB Monographs 6, p. 206; and 21, pp. 3-5.
The voluminous correspondence regarding changes in
of the Army Specialist Corps, student JMPA is filed in OCT 551.1 JMPA.
nurses (civilians), military personnel of 28
JMPA 22, Secs. 3, 4.
29
nations receiving aid under the Lend- OCT HB Monograph 21, p. 27; Ltr, DC of Traf
Contl Div OCT to Pullman Co., 26 Jul 45, and reply,
Lease Act, and alien enemies, prisoners of 2 Aug 45, both in OCT 510 Trans of Parties; WD
28
war, and other interned persons. CTB 6, revised 9 Jun 45, Sec. V.
20 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

merits would be made by the railroads agreement was reached with regard to
were of considerable importance. At the special trains for this purpose. 32 The
beginning of the war the carriers' tariffs Army found it advantageous when large
required a minimum of 100 first-class units were moving to ship the personal
fares, or equivalent revenue, for the oper- baggage and the organizational equip-
ation of a special train. This meant more ment in advance by special freight trains
than 100 fares when the troops were mov- and the troops in special troop trains,
ing in coaches or tourist sleepers, and the rather than to move both in mixed trains.
Chief of Transportation sought a reduc- But the Army did not accept the rail-
tion. The result was that during the roads' contention that the payment for a
greater part of the war the minimum for a special impedimenta train should be on
special train was 75 first-class fares where the same basis as for a mixed trainthat
no land-grant deductions were involved, is, a minimum number of passenger fares
and 90 first-class fares on land-grant in addition to the appropriate freight
routes.30 charges. When negotiations became dead-
Conditions relating to the furnishing of locked, the Army announced that it no
special cars on regular trains were not in- longer would request special trains for
corporated in the Joint Military Passenger troop impedimenta but would allow the
Agreement but were covered by informal carriers to determine whether they could
arrangements. The minimum require- best handle the impedimenta in mixed
ment for special sleepers for military trains with troops, or in regular freight
movements was fifteen passengers. The trains for which only freight charges
Army requested the railroads to make the would be assessed.33 As it worked out,
same arrangement for special coaches and most separate impedimenta trains moved
also sought to have this feature covered in as regular freight trains, and in emergency
the JMPA, but was only partially success- cases where the Army requested special
ful. The railroads declined to commit freight train service, it paid the usual addi-
themselves without qualification to furnish tional charge for such service.
special coaches; however, they agreed to The Army and the railroads also were
do so for the handling of prisoners of war at odds concerning liability for the per-
and internees for whom special coaches sonal effects of troopsprincipally bar-
obviously were necessary and stated that racks bags, bedrolls, and foot lockers
they would furnish special coaches for which were carried as baggage. When
troops to the extent of their ability. The troops used regular trains, such baggage
minimum requirement for special coaches up to 150 pounds per person was checked
31
was fixed at twenty-two and a half fares. in the usual manner and the railroads as-
30
OCT HB Monograph 21, pp. 47-51; JMPA 22,
The arrangements concerning the Sec. 18(3).
31
movement of troop impedimenta were OCT HB Monograph 21, pp. 61-62; WD CTB
22, 29 June 44, Sec. 1.
evolved in practice rather than fixed by 32
OQMG Cir Ltr 157, 16 Jul 41, sub: Equalization
agreement. The railroads agreed to equal- of Rates on Trans of Imped; Memo, IMC for CofT,
ize the land-grant freight rates so that et al., 22 Jun 42, OCT 551.2 Mil Imped.
33
Ltr, IMC to CofT, et al., 29 Jun 43; Ltrs, OCT to
impedimenta could move with troops at IMC, 2 Sep 43 and 12 Oct 43; all in OCT 551.1
the lowest net freight charge, but no JMPA 20.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 21

sumed the usual liability. When larger A more serious problem involved the
movements took place, the baggage was decision whether troops would use the
transported in bulk (unchecked) in un- regular dining car service or would be fed
attended baggage cars, and in such in- from troop kitchen cars attached to regu-
stances the carriers objected to assuming lar trains. Although the subsistence of
full liability. They proposed that a clause troops was a Quartermaster function and
be inserted in the Joint Military Passenger the subject was covered in the Quarter-
Agreement limiting their liability to master series of War Department regula-
$25.00 per person on unchecked baggage, tions, the Chief of Transportation took an
with a total liability of $2,500 per baggage active interest because of the bearing that
car, unless additional liability was as- the question had on troop morale and
sumed under an insurance arrangement. discipline. In the early part of the war
The Army refused to accept this tender, when the decision whether or not to
and no such limitation on the carriers' attach troop kitchen cars to trains was
liability was included in the wartime left to the commanding officers of the in-
agreements.34 stallations originating the movements, it
often happened that provision was not
Providing meals for troops traveling by made for kitchen cars when large num-
rail gave rise to a number of problems bers of troops were moving and that the
after heavy movements began. The first regular dining cars were unable to accom-
problem involved the question whether modate both civilians and soldiers. Under
troops using regular trains should be pro- such circumstances there was likely to be
vided with cash or with tickets to cover a disorderly scramble for food at each stop
their meals when rations in kind (food along the route. The regulation accord-
boxes) were not furnished. Both the car- ingly was changed so that kitchen cars
riers and the Traffic Control Division in were required for all movements of 100 or
Washington favored the use of tickets, more military personnel involving a jour-
since troops often spent the subsistence ney of twenty-four hours or more duration.
allowance in other ways and the railroads They might be used for movements of
found that they had provided food for smaller size or shorter duration if the rail-
customers that did not appear. The War roads could provide them. 36
Department, while directing that tickets At the outset the Army had no special
"ordinarily" would be used, nevertheless kitchen cars. The railroads therefore
left it to the officer ordering each move- agreed to furnish without charge, for each
ment to determine whether tickets or cash 250 troops or fraction thereof (but not for
should be provided, on the ground that less than 100), an empty baggage car in
there were occasions when it was inadvis- which the Army could install kitchen
able or impracticable to use meal tickets.35 equipment. The early practice was to re-
This meant that there was lack of uni- 34
formity in regard to movements originat- Sec. 23. OCT HB Monograph 21, pp. 92-93; JMPA 22,
ing with field installations, and the im- 35
WD Cir 209, 6 Oct 41; AR 30-2215, 1 Feb 44,
practical method of giving troops a cash par. 2; OCT HB Monograph 6, pp. 256-68.
36
allowance to cover meals en route con- AR 30-2215, 14 Jun 43, par. 2; AR 30-2215, 1
Feb 44, par. 2, and Changes 2, 27 Jul 45; OCT HB
tinued in use. Monograph 21, pp. 81-83.
22 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

move the kitchen equipment at the end with a minimum expenditure of scarce
39
of each trip and ship it back to the station materials and production time.
of origin and to return the car to the rail- The operating arrangements pertaining
road. When troop movements became to these government-owned cars were cov-
a constant operation, the installation and ered by interlocking contracts between
removal of kitchen equipment was found the Defense Plant Corporation and the
to be both time-consuming and costly, Pullman Company, and between the As-
and the wear and tear on the cars was sociation of American Railroads and the
considerable. The establishment of a per- 40
Pullman Company. Briefly stated, the
manent pool of converted baggage cars arrangements were as follows: The rail-
was then proposed, but the need for roads paid a mileage rate and the Pull-
cars in regular baggage service placed man Company paid a rental fee to the
limits on the execution of the plan. The Defense Plant Corporation for the use of
situation was relieved when the govern- the cars. The Pullman Company operated
ment began to acquire special troop kitch- and maintained the troop sleepers in
en cars. Nevertheless, baggage cars were much the same manner as it operated and
needed for kitchen purposes to the end of maintained its owned equipment. The
the war, and the somewhat complicated Pullman Company assigned the troop
arrangements concerning their employ- kitchen cars to service in accordance with
ment were detailed in the Joint Military the needs of the armed forces, and was re-
Passenger Agreement.37 sponsible for their maintenance as rail-
road equipment at the expense of the
Special arrangements were necessary in Defense Plant Corporation; the armed
connection with the operation of the gov- forces provided and maintained the kitch-
ernment-owned troop sleepers and troop en equipment, provided the kitchen sup-
kitchen cars that began to enter service plies and mess crews, and were responsible
late in 1943. The first order for 1,200 for interior cleaning.
troop sleepers and 400 troop kitchen cars The principal traffic arrangements
was placed by the Defense Plant Corpora- between the armed forces and the carriers
tion in March 1943, and a duplicate order regarding the use of troop sleepers and
was placed in May 1945.38 The troop troop kitchen cars were included in a spe-
sleepers provided berths for thirty persons,
in ten tiers of three berths each, arranged 37
WD Cir 181, 27 Aug 41, Sec. III; AR 55-135, 31
crosswise. Although the cars were of sim- Aug 42, par. 2; JMPA 22, 1 Jul 45, Sec. 24; OCT HB
plified design and the facilities were utili- Monograph 21, pp. 51-58.
38
tarian, the troop sleepers were adequate Circumstances leading to the placement of these
orders are discussed in Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 333-34.
and they were far preferable to coaches 39
These special sleepers and kitchen cars were of
for overnight travel. The troop kitchen all-steel construction, 54 feet-2 inches long over the
cars also were of simplified design, but bumpers, and had no vestibules. They had two
4-wheel high-speed trucks and were equipped for
they were well equipped and were a great operation in regular passenger train service. For fur-
improvement over converted baggage ther technical details, see file OCT HB Rail Div
cars. The underlying purpose in the con- Troop Sleepers and Kitchen Cars.
40
Both contracts were published in a pamphlet,
struction of both types of cars was to pro- Special Troop Car Contracts, OCT HB Rail Div
vide additional troop train equipment Troop Sleepers and Kitchen Cars.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 23

SPECIALLY DESIGNED GOVERNMENT-OWNED TROOP SLEEPERS and


troop kitchen cars en route to a port.
cial agreement published each year in but because of the urgent need both types
connection with the Joint Military Passen- were continuously in use.
ger Agreement but not as a part of it.41 To cover the movement of kitchen cars,
For transportation in troop sleepers the the armed forces paid the carriers (rail-
armed forces paid the railroads fares equal roads and Pullman Company) a rate of
to two thirds of the normal one-way first- six cents a mile regardless of whether the
class fares, except that when such fares cars were moving in service or out of serv-
were greater than the net military fares ice. In addition, members of the military
under JMPA the lesser fares were appli- mess crews of kitchen cars paid fares
cable.42 For Pullman service the armed according to the class of the cars in which
forces paid the Pullman Company a troop they had passenger accommodations. Re-
sleeper berth rate equal to one third of the quests for the assignment of kitchen cars
sum of the lower and upper berth rates 41
Joint Agreement T 3, 14 Apr 45, published with
applicable to tourist sleeping cars. The JMPA 22, embraced changes to date in original agree-
agreement provided that the Pullman ment of 11 March 1943.
42
Troop sleeper railroad fares were applicable
Company would assign troop sleepers only throughout the country, although tourist (intermedi-
when tourist sleepers were not available, ate) fares applied only west of the Mississippi.
24 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

were made to the Pullman Company by on furlough, leave, or pass. Initially the
the several armed services when they reductions varied in the different territories
arranged for coaches or sleepers to move and they were offered only for limited
their troops. An Army officer was detailed periods. The War Department urged the
to the Pullman Company headquarters in railroads to adopt uniform rates and to
Chicago to co-ordinate these requests and make the reductions effective for the entire
eliminate unnecessary deadhead mileage. war period. Eventually this was done.47 A
By agreement among the armed services a round-trip coach fare of one and a quarter
deadhead movement of a kitchen car was cents a mile, good for thirty days from
charged to the service for which the last date of sale, was allowed to members of
in-service movement of the car was made.43 the armed forces traveling in uniform and
holding furlough fare identification certifi-
During the war the Army built up a cates. This fare was less than the average
fleet of 320 hospital cars and 60 medical that the government paid for troops mak-
kitchen cars, and separate arrangements ing official moves.48 Several bills were in-
were made covering the operation of this troduced in Congress proposing greater
equipment over the carriers' lines and the reductions on furlough tickets, but they
fares to be paid for the transportation of were not passed. The War Department
44
patients and attendants. The terms that considered the fares adopted voluntarily
the Chief of Transportation accepted after by the railroads to be equitable and did
long negotiation and after some of the not favor forcing the carriers to furnish
hospital cars were already in service were this service at a loss. The department also
not satisfactory to him, and he made re- opposed a plan to have furloughees pay
peated efforts to have them modified. He one cent a mile and the government pay
argued that the railroads should not get a the remainder of the tariff fares.49
greater revenue from the government- 43
owned hospital cars than for moving pa- OCT HB Monograph 21, pp. 32-36, 74-80. Con-
cerning requests for assignment of kitchen cars, see
tients in Pullman cars. The railroads were Memo, CofT for 6th ZTO, 30 Jun 43, OCT 531.2
unwilling to meet his proposal that they Troop Sleepers and Kitchen Cars.
44
either pay a mileage rate to the govern- Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 381-91; OCT HB Mono-
graph 21, pp. 36-38; WD Memo W 55-33-43, 10 Aug
ment or reduce the fares, but they finally 43, sub: Trans of Hosp Cars and Trains.
agreed to assume certain routine servicing 45
Ltr, DC of Traf Contl Div to W. C. Kendall,
charges retroactively.45 After the war spe- Chm Car Service Div AAR, 31 Jul 43, OCT 080
AAR; Ltr, CofT to John J. Pelley, Pres AAR, 10 May
cial arrangements were made between the 45, OCT 531.4 Hosp Train; Ltrs, C of Rail Div OCT
Army and the railroads concerning the for Charles H. Buford, Vice Pres AAR, 16 and 30
use of 118 government-owned mortuary May 45, OCT 080 AAR; Ltr, AAR to C of Rail Div
OCT, 30 Jun 45, OCT HB Rail Div Hosp Cars.
cars, which were employed for transport- 46
Ltr, IMC to CofT, 3 Sep 47, OCT HB Rail Div
ing the remains of World War II dead Mortuary Cars.
47
after repatriation from overseas.46 48
OCT HB Monograph 6, pp. 210-13.
Ltr, SW to Sen H. Styles Bridges, 30 Jun 41; Ltr,
Adm Asst to SW to Sen W. Lee O'Daniel, 1 Apr 42;
Early in the emergency the railroads, both in OSW Trans 501-800; WD Cir 350, 28 Aug
acting on their own initiative, granted re- 44, Sec. VIII; WD Cir 103, 3 Apr 45, Sec. V.
49
Ltr, SW to Rep Andrew J. May, 14 Jul 41; Ltr,
duced rates to members of the armed SW to Sen Burton K. Wheeler, 10 Mar 42; both in
forces traveling at their own expense while OSW Trans 501-800.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 25

The question was raised whether under that these matters were dealt with
Section 22 of the Interstate Commerce promptly, and in the great majority of
Act the railroads had authority to allow cases satisfactorily for the Army.52
fare reductions to members of the armed
forces when they were traveling at their
own expense. This question was removed Army Policies and Procedures
by an act of Congress, passed in September
1944, which authorized special furlough The Army's policy regarding the man-
fares.50 agement of its passenger traffic was essen-
The general policy of the bus lines was tially one of centralization. The regulations
to allow special furlough fares, but there and instructions covering all aspects of
was no uniformity in the fares available in this traffic were issued by the War Depart-
different sections of the country because of ment, and they reflected chiefly the expe-
the varying rate structures. The War De- rience and doctrine of the Chief of
partment accordingly instructed service- Transportation. He was responsible for
men and servicewomen to apply to local all negotiations with the carriers relating
representatives of the motor carriers re- to services, charges, and other traffic ar-
garding the availability and the amount rangements. All agencies of the War
51
of furlough fares. Department in Washington were directed
to apply to him for information on such
The railroads transported most of the matters and to avoid maintaining dupli-
troops and the working arrangements be- cate staffs.53 All of the larger organized
tween them and the armed forces were groups of Army personnel were routed
complicated; only the basic features have under the supervision of the Chief of
been mentioned. No simple set of rules Transportation, and he arranged with the
could cover the many departures from carriers for the necessary equipment and
regular tariffs and regular operating prac- controlled the timing of the movements
tices that were involved in the handling of within limits allowed by the movement
military traffic. The arrangements also orders. This policy of centralization was
fluctuated because the underlying circum- maintained throughout the war despite
stances changed radically when the United objections in some quarters and proposals
States undertook a large rearmament pro- to modify it.
gram in 1940, and again when the nation The efforts to alter the policy came from
became engaged in a global war. Although two sources. During the summer of 1942 a
there were many disagreements between
the carriers and the Army regarding terms 50
PL 436, 78th Cong., 27 Sep 44. Ltr, Armed
and conditions, these disagreements did Forces to IMG, 8 Nov 46, OCT 551.1 Furlough Fares,
not affect the actual movement of military reviewed development of furlough fares and requested
personnel. From that standpoint the Chief continuance.
51
WD Cir 350, 28 Aug 44, Sec. VIII, par. 2.
of Transportation, representing the Army, 52
The methods of this collaboration and the major
and the Military Transportation Section, difficulties will be discussed in later sections of this
representing the railroads, literally worked chapter.
53
AR 55-105, 29 Dec 42, par. 2. Essentially the
side by side and were in constant contact same policy was followed concerning freight traffic,
on all matters affecting movements, so as will be seen in Ch. IV, below.
26 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

survey of the service commands, con- routings were being obtained from Wash-
ducted by the Control Division of the ington, and to lighten the burden on The
Services of Supply headquarters, disclosed Quartermaster General. In January 1943
a sentiment in favor of delegating certain the regulation was changed again, and
authorities from Washington to the field, routings for groups of forty or more were
including the authority to route group thereafter provided by the Chief of Trans-
movements. The Chief of Transportation portation, who in the meantime had taken
successfully opposed the decentralization over this responsibility from The Quarter-
of routing; he argued that central control master General. Under the Army plan of
was necessary to insure the economical berthing, up to thirty-nine passengers
use of the carriers' equipment, to obtain could be accommodated in a sleeping car,
an equitable and practical distribution of and the last change was prompted by the
traffic among the carriers, to facilitate the desire to have centralized routing for all
control and diversion of movements en movements involving more than one car-
route, and to permit a national program load. When a group was not sufficiently
to be formulated and timely notice to be large to require routing in Washington, the
given to the carriers concerning prospec- Army transportation officers at the origi-
tive requirements for their services.54 The nating stations made arrangements for the
Army Air Forces, which late in 1942 had shipments with local representatives of the
obtained a delegation of authority from carriers.56
the Chief of Transportation to control its
own domestic freight movements, sug- Routings provided by the Chief of
gested that a similar arrangement be made Transportation were established by his
with regard to passenger traffic. This sug- Traffic Control Division on the basis of
gestion was made informally on a number proposals made by the territorial passen-
of occasions to the Traffic Control Divi- ger associations of the railroads. These
sion, but it received no encouragement associations had representatives in Wash-
from that quarter and probably for that ington attached to the Military Transpor-
reason it was not put forward on a higher tation Section of the Association of
level.55 American Railroads. As has been indi-
The regulation relating to the size of cated, the main purpose of the associations
groups to be routed in Washington was in proposing routings was to insure proper
changed several times during the emer- distribution of the traffic among the rail
gency. Initially all groups of fifteen or lines. When the Army regulation was
more were routed by The Quartermaster 54
General. When the Selective Service Act Memo, CG SOS for CofT, 24 Jul 42, sub: Decen-
tralization of Actions; Memo, C of Traf Contl Div
was passed in September 1940, it was fore- OCT for CofT, 30 Jul 42; both in OCT 323.3 SvCs.
seen that group travel would increase 55
Interv with Morris, 26 Jun 50, OCT HB Traf
greatly. The regulation was therefore Contl Div Pass.
56
AR 30-930, 6 Nov 30, par. 8; WD Cir 101, 12
changed so that only groups numbering Sep 40, Sec. II; AR 55-130, 28 Dec 42, par. 8; WD
fifty or more would be routed in Washing- Cir 28, 22 Jan 43, Sec. IV. The commonest type of
ton. The primary purpose of this change sleeper had twelve sections and one drawing room,
and the total of thirty-nine resulted from placing three
was to remove the possibility of delay in enlisted men in each section and three in the drawing
the movement of the smaller groups while room.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 27

changed in September 1940 to permit the ation arose the manager of the MTS
local routing of groups comprising up to should have had authority to decide the
forty-nine men, rather than up to fourteen, issue for the railroads, since the prompt
the railroads protested on the ground that execution of the movement was the
permitting this considerable traffic to be primary consideration.59
routed by local Army transportation offi- Differences between the operating and
cers would result in an inequitable distri- traffic interests of the railroads came out
bution of business. As a result of this in another connection. The Army stated
protest, arrangements were made that, as a general principle that passengers
when moving groups of from fifteen to would be forwarded by the "most eco-
60
forty-nine, the local transportation officers nomical usually traveled routes." The
would obtain suggested routings from primary purpose was to insure that advan-
designated representatives of the carriers tage would be taken of land-grant rates
located at or near their installations, who wherever they were applicable. In peace-
in turn would be governed by instructions time there was no occasion for deviation
from the responsible associations.57 Fre- from the principle, but during the war
quently this representative was the nearest there were times when the most econom-
agent of a railroad serving the installa- ical routes were congested and other
tion, but full-time agents of the territorial routes were more favorable to expeditious
passenger associations were assigned to movement. The Military Transportation
stations where traffic was especially heavy. Section urged the avoidance of congested
The arrangements under which the ter- routes and the Chief of Transportation
ritorial passenger associations proposed supported that view. The territorial pas-
routings for the larger group movements senger associations, on the other hand,
relieved the Chief of Transportation of a favored the "usually traveled routes,"
heavy responsibility, but they also created partly because their plans for the distribu-
a problem. The Chief of Transportation tion of traffic among the lines were worked
could reject a proposed routing if he con- out on the basis of such routings, and
sidered it unsatisfactory from the military partly because the railroads could not col-
standpoint, in which case the association lect higher fares from the government
concerned endeavored to meet his objec- when they proposed other routes. Here
tion.58 More often the objection originated again the Traffic Control Division con-
with the Military Transportation Section tended that, when the operating and
because it anticipated difficulty in provid-
57
ing equipment. If the association resisted Ltr, OQMG to IMC, 28 Sep 40; Ltr, IMC to
changing the route, the Traffic Control TQMG, 19 Oct 40; both in OCT 511 (AR 30-930).
58
The associations did not always take such rejec-
Division was placed in the cross fire of an tions without an argument. See Memo, Morris for Sid-
argument between the two agencies of the dall, Chm IMC, 2 May 44, OCT 511; OCT HB
railroads representing the operating and Monograph 21, pp. 17, 18.
59
See Colonel Morris' monograph, Adequacy of
the traffic points of view. Col. I. Sewell Transportation Facilities in the United States to Han-
Morris, who was in charge of the Passen- dle Troop Movements of the Military Establishment
ger Branch of the Traffic Control Division During a War Emergency, submitted to the Industrial
College of the Armed Forces, 25 Feb 49, p. 52; here-
during the greater part of the war, ex- after cited as Morris monograph.
pressed the opinion that when such a situ- 60
AR 55-105, 29 Dec 42, par. 4a.
28 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

traffic interests of the carriers were in con- while the Army through its regular trans-
flict, the operating point of view should portation machinery would control subse-
govern.61 quent movements. 63 The traffic into the
induction stations consequently did not
Decision as to the type of carrier to be come under the Joint Military Passenger
used in moving military personnel was Agreement between the armed forces and
made by the routing authoritythe the railroads. Buses were well adapted to
Traffic Control Division for the larger handle it since the groups were small and
groups, and post transportation officers the distances usually were short. Selective
for smaller groups and individuals. Guid- Service therefore entered into an agree-
ing principles for such decisions were set ment concerning such movements with
forth in instructions issued by the War the motor carriers through the National
Department and the Chief of Transporta- Bus Traffic Association. Meanwhile, to fa-
tion. In the summer of 1941 the railroads cilitate rail movements from induction
had reluctantly consented to the change in stations to reception centers, the Interter-
the agreement between the armed forces ritorial Military Committee of the rail-
and the railroads that permitted greater roads established blanket routings, which
use of the bus lines and airlines than had dispensed with the necessity of obtaining
been possible previously. Afterwards they a routing for each group. Close collabora-
complained repeatedly when they had tion between Army transportation officers
reason to believe that the new clause in and the Selective Service System was
the agreement was being misapplied to necessary in order to keep the selectees
the advantage of the motor carriers. These moving promptly through the induction
complaints involved chiefly routings by stations. As a result of this collaboration,
local transportation officers, and late in groups that the railroads believed should
1941 railway representatives suggested have been routed by rail were routed out
that these officers be instructed to confer of the stations by bus. In this case, as in
with the rail agents near their stations be- others, the Chief of Transportation issued
fore using any other type of transporta- instructions designed to promote strict
tion. The Army transportation officials in observance of the agreement with the rail
Washington refused to go along with this carriers.64
suggestion, but they investigated each The Army's use of commercial buses
specific complaint made by the railroads increased steadily after the United States
and in general endeavored to see that the entered the war. There were many points
62
spirit of the agreement was carried out. that were not served directly by rail.
The question of bus versus rail routing Moreover, routing by highway was en-
was particularly acute in connection with
the transportation of selectees. Soon after 61
Interv with Morris, 28 Jun 50, OCT HB Traf
the passage of the Selective Service Act in Contl Div Pass.
62
OCT HB Monograph 21, pp. 13, 14, 16. See also
September 1940, the Army and the Selec- Ltr, Western Mil Bur to CofT, 16 Feb 44, sub: Use of
tive Service System agreed that the latter Buses versus RRs, and subsequent correspondence,
agency would be responsible for the trans- OCT 511.
63
See AR 615-500, 1 Sep 42, par. 12.
portation of men from their homes or 64
OCT HB Monographs 6, pp. 264-69; 20, pp.
draft boards to the induction stations, 58-63; 21, pp. 20-25.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 29

couraged by the Traffic Control Division economical route be always used was tem-
when short hauls were involved because porarily lifted. Late in March 1945, with
of the quicker delivery given by the motor a view to the needs of the redeployment
carriers, their flexibility due to freedom period, transportation officers were in-
from fixed terminals, and the limited sup- structed that commercial air passage
ply of railroad passenger equipment. The could be furnished if the cost to the gov-
use of buses for long trips and for large ernment did not exceed the lowest airline
groups was not favored because of the tariff in effect on 1 March 1945 between
lack of sleeping facilities, problems of the points involved.67
messing en route when troop units were Of the total traffic moved on War De-
being moved, and the limited space avail- partment transportation requests, for
able for baggage that accompanied the which data are available only for the
troops. It was the general policy that, ex- period December 1941 through May
cept under emergency conditions, rout- 1943, 83.8 percent moved by rail, 16.0
ings by highway would be limited to trips percent by motor, and the remainder by
that started after 6:00 A.M. and ended air and water.68 Of the traffic that moved
before the following midnight.65 in organized groups under routings pro-
Use of commercial airlines for military vided by the central routing authority in
travel was limited by the scarcity of space Washington, data for which are available
and by the requirement that the most throughout the period December 1941-
economical route be used. More than half December 1945, 97.25 percent moved by
of the commercial aircraft in operation in rail and 2.75 percent by bus. (Tables 1 and
the zone of interior when the United 2 and Chart 1) The fact that travel by bus
States entered the war were requisitioned constituted a considerably larger percent-
by the Army, and the airlines discon- age of the total traffic than of the organized
tinued a 5 percent reduction that they group traffic routed in Washington reflects
had been allowing to military personnel. the policy of using buses only for travel by
The Army then made provision for the individuals and small parties and for the
use of commercial aircraft, despite the shorter trips.
higher fare, when time or other exigencies The Army-owned motor vehicles in-
of the service did not permit travel by cluded in the organic equipment of troop
other means and military aircraft were units were used in executing troop move-
not available or could not be used eco- ments so far as practicable, but the relief
66
nomically. When the Army began re- that they afforded the commercial car-
turning requisitioned aircraft late in the riers was not great. Organic vehicles were
war, some of the airlines reinstated fare trucks and hence not well adapted to
reductions. Since air rates were fluctuat-
ing at that time and the reductions were 65
OCT Cir 18, 12 Jun 42, par. 9a; WD Cir 358, 4
not uniformly applicable, local transpor- Sep 44, Sec. IV, par. 2c.
66
AR 55-120, 26 Apr 43, sub: Trans of Indiv,
tation officers found it difficult, in cases par. 3b.
not covered by the emergency provision, 67
Ltr, Fiscal Dir ASF to Comptroller Gen of the
to determine when the air route was the U.S., 22 Mar 43, AG 584.1 (24 Mar 45); WD Cir 95,
27 Mar 45, Sec. I; OCT HB Monograph 21, pp.
most economical. To overcome this diffi- 18-20.
culty, the requirement that the most 68
See n. 4, above.
30 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

TABLE 1ARMY PASSENGERS MOVED BY COMMERCIAL RAIL AND Bus IN ORGANIZED GROUPS
ON ROUTINGS PROVIDED BY THE CENTRAL ROUTING AUTHORITY IN WASHINGTON:
DECEMBER 1941-DECEMBER 1945a

b
Figures for bus traffic are number of passengers routed; the number actually moved was slightly less, but data are not available.
Source: Data originally compiled by Transport Economics Section, Traffic Control Division, OCT, and reworked for a statistical volume
of this series, now in preparation.

TABLE 2ANALYSIS OF ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC MOVED BY RAIL IN ORGANIZED GROUPS


ON ROUTINGS PROVIDED BY CENTRAL ROUTING AUTHORITY IN WASHINGTON: DECEMBER
1941-DECEMBER 1945 a

a
Up to January 1943 all groups of fifty or more were routed In
in Washington, thereafter groups of forty or
or more.
more.
b
Includes only sleepers and coaches through June 1945; hospital cars are also included beginning in July 1945.
Source: Data originally compiled by Transport Economics Section, Traffic Control Division, OCT, and reworked for a statistical volume
of this series, now in preparation.

long, continuous troop hauls. Problems of the war Army regulations sanctioned the
bivouac and messing were involved in use of organic vehicles for movements up
making long trips by motor, and delays to 500 miles at the discretion of the agency
en route for these purposes made such initiating the movement order; in April
movements slow compared with those ac- 1943 the distance was reduced to 350
complished by rail. When troops were miles, but within a few months it was ex-
being transferred without their equip- tended again to 500 miles for administra-
ment, the round trip of the vehicles, with tive movements and 600 miles for training
empty backhaul, was an expensive mode movements in or out of maneuver areas.
of transportation. During the early part of The latter action was taken in order to
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 31

CHART 1ARMY PASSENGERS MOVED MONTHLY BY RAIL AND Bus IN ORGANIZED GROUPS
ON ROUTINGS PROVIDED BY THE CENTRAL ROUTING AUTHORITY IN WASHINGTON:
DECEMBER 1941-DECEMBER 1945*

* Up to January 1943 all groups of fifty or more were routed in Washington; thereafter groups of forty or more. Rail
figures are passengers actually moved; bus figures are passengers routed, some of whom did not actually move.
Source: Data originally compiled by Traffic Control Division, OCT, and reworked for a statistical volume of this series,
now in preparation.

afford as much relief as possible to the class) if the journey exceeded twelve hours
railroads.69 and ended after midnight, otherwise they
were furnished seats in day coaches (coach
The many types of passengers moved class).70 Tourist cars were the older types
under Army auspices necessitated rather of standard sleeping cars for which the
elaborate regulations regarding the types same fare was charged as for coaches, plus
of railway accommodations to be fur- a berth rate smaller than that for stand-
nished. In brief, the following arrange- ard sleeping cars. The carriers did not
ments were in effect: standard sleeping 69
WD Cir 193, 16 Jun 42, par. 2; WD Cir 102, 15
car accommodations or parlor car seats Apr 43, par. 2; WD Cir 189, 21 Aug 43, Sec. IV, par.
(designated in the transportation requests 2. These regulations ostensibly applied also to move-
ments by commercial buses, but in that respect the
as first class) were furnished to commis- Traffic Control Division considered them in conflict
sioned officers, noncommissioned officers with the Joint Military Passenger Agreement and did
of the first three grades, nurses, and de- not give them effect. See Memo, Traf Contl Div for
Adm Div OCT, 17 Feb 43, par. 6, OCT 511; WD Cir
pendents of military personnel making a 233, 10 Jun 44, Sec. IV, par. 2; Interv with Morris,
permanent change of station; noncommis- 20 Jul 50, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass.
70
sioned officers below the third grade and AR 55-125, 9 Jan 43, sub: Sleeping Car and
Similar Accommodations, par. 2; WD TM 55-525,
enlisted men were furnished tourist sleep- June 1945, Sleeping Car and Similar Accommoda-
ing car accommodations (intermediate tions.
32 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

make enough sleepers available to accom- The Army again appealed to the Navy to
modate all the troops entitled to them place two enlisted men in each lower
under the regulations. When a shortage of berth, but the Navy again declined on
sleepers occurred at a particular point, grounds of "health, morals, and comfort."
those available were assigned to the troops The issue between the Army and the
making the longer journeys. Navy was resolved in July 1945, when the
Except under circumstances specified Office of Defense Transportation ordered
in the regulation, transportation requests that three men be assigned to each sleep-
were to call for through transportation for ing car section in all organized military
the entire journey directed in the travel movements.73
orders. The purpose of this requirement When groups of enlisted men were
was to prevent the "splitting" of transpor- moved in day coaches, the Army used as
tation requestsissuing one request for many of the seats as was considered feasi-
coaches for the day portion and another ble. On day trips 90 percent of the seating
for sleeping car accommodations for the capacity was used for passengers, the re-
night portion of the same tripa practice mainder being reserved for their personal
that would have wasted transportation equipment. In the beginning, when over-
equipment. The railroads objected to the night trips were made in coaches, only
splitting of transportation requests also on one soldier was assigned to each double
the ground that it deprived them of rev- seat in order that the men might obtain as
enuethat is, sleeping car rates for the much rest as possible. Later, when the
entire journey. 7l shortage of passenger cars became acute,
When groups of enlisted men traveled the practice was changed and three men
in tourist or standard sleeping cars, two were assigned to two double seats. When
men were assigned to each lower berth coaches with reclining seats were made
72
and one to each upper. This in effect in- available for overnight trips, the 90-per-
creased the capacity of a car by 50 per- cent rule was applied. While as a general
cent as compared with regular traffic. The practice Army transportation officers and
Navy assigned only one enlisted man to a railroad officials were governed by these
lower berth during the greater part of the standards, heavier or lighter loading
war, although an effort was made in the sometimes occurred when conditions re-
74
fall of 1942 to have it adopt the Army quired it.
practice. After redeployment began and Individuals traveling first class at gov-
the need for sleeping accommodations for ernment expense were entitled, under an
long hauls became exceptionally heavy, act of Congress, to transportation "not to
the Director of Defense Transportation 71
proposed that four servicemen be assigned AR 55-110, 22 Jan 43, sub: Trans Requests, par.
l0a; OCT HB Monograph 22, p. 44.
to each section. The Army declined to go 72
AR 55-125, 9 Jan 43, par. 2c(1).
along with this proposal on the ground 73
OCT HB Monographs 20, p. 54; 22, p. 86; Ltr,
that it was not "practical" to place two in ODT to USW, 30 Jun 45, and reply, 4 Jul 45, OCT
HB Gross ODT; Ltr, SW to SN, 5 Jul 45, and reply,
every berth since double berthing was not 13 Jul 45; both in G-4 510, Vol. III; Memo, Col Luke
satisfactory for large men. It objected also W. Finlay for Gross, 17 Jul 45, pp. 2, 3, OCT HB
to the application of such a rule to the Gross Day File; ODT GO 56, 20 Jul 45.
74
AR 55-130, 28 Dec 42, par 6b; Changes 1, 26 Apr
armed services while civilians were per- 43; Ltr, Lasher to Buford, Vice Pres AAR, 18 Dec 43,
mitted to engage a berth for one person. OCT 511.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 33

exceed the lowest first-class rate." The when military personnel used public con-
Comptroller General had interpreted this veyances for official or personal travel.
to limit accommodations to lower berths Efforts by carriers' employees to enforce
or parlor car seats on trains to which the the laws, sometimes tempered by personal
standard first-class fare applied. During prejudices, created many unpleasant situ-
the war these requirements worked a ations for Negro servicemen. Complaints
hardship on officers who were traveling received by the War Department, some-
under closely planned schedules, since times directly and sometimes through
they either had to forego the use of extra- members of Congress or civic groups, were
fare trains with consequent delays or had investigated carefully to ascertain the facts
to pay the difference from their per diem and to correct abuses. The railroads were
allowance. To remedy this situation, the requested to use special care to supply
Army obtained from the Comptroller Negro troops with equal accommodations.
General a revised ruling that permitted Service commanders were requested to
the use of extra-fare trains when it was see that equal treatment was provided by
determined by the authority directing the bus operators serving Army installations
travel that the mission could not be ac- and were informed that vehicles would be
complished by the use of regular-fare made available from the Transportation
trains. Officers using extra-fare trains Corps' bus pool to assist them. These and
were limited to lower berths when the other measures only partially met the situ-
trains offered such accommodations, or to ation since the Army had no means of off-
the lowest cost accommodation on trains setting the segregation laws or of counter-
that offered only superior accommoda- acting sectional attitudes.77
tions. Provision was made for couriers car-
rying secret documents as hand baggage The railroads were committed to pro-
to occupy superior accommodations when viding special sleepers whenever a group
this was considered desirable from the 75
standpoint of security.75 AR 55-105, 29 Dec 42, par. 8a; Changes 12, 2
May 44; Changes 14, 15 Dec 44. Documents relating
to Army efforts before and during the war to change
The problems connected with the trans- the "lowest first-class rate" rule are in AG 500
portation of Negro troops constitute a very (6-2-37)(l) and AG 510 (1 Dec 42). See also OCT HB
Monograph 20, pp. 46-48.
broad subject, and no attempt will be 76
Problems connected with transportation of Negro
made here to discuss them in detail. 76 It troops are dealt with in Maj. Ulysses G. Lee, Jr., The
was an Army policy that there should be Employment of Negro Troops in World War II, a
volume in preparation for this series.
no discrimination between whites and 77
An indication of the relation of the Transporta-
Negroes, and the Chief of Transportation tion Corps to this subject is given in the following: Ltr,
endeavored to enforce that policy to the Gross to Joseph B. Eastman, ODT, 23 Nov 42, OCT
HB Gross Day File; Memo, Finlay for Gross, 13 Aug
extent of his ability. On special trains and 42, sub: "Jim Crow" Laws; Memo, Gross for ASW, 19
buses operated under Army control en- Jul 43, sub: Trans Facilities for Negroes; Ltr, Gross to
forcement was not difficult, but a different Pelley, Pres AAR, 19 Jul 43, and reply, 21 Jul 43; last
four in OCT 531.7 Discrimination; Memo, Maj Gen
situation prevailed when the regularly George Grunert for Somervell, 19 Jul 43; Ltr, CofT
scheduled services of the carriers were in- for CG 4th SvC, 30 Jul 43 (and similar ltrs to other
volved. In certain states the laws required SvCs); last two in OCT 510 Negro; Memo, Maj Gen
Wilhelm D. Styer for CofT, 13 Apr 44, sub: Trans
segregation, and the Army took the atti- Facilities for Negro Troops, and related correspond-
tude that such laws should be obeyed ence, OCT 511.
34 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

of fifteen or more soldiers was to be ments called for by temporary changes of


moved. As a measure of economy in the station might be ordered by OPD, by the
use of transportation the Army endeav- commanding generals of the AGF, the
ored to ask for special cars only when all AAF, the ASF, and the defense com-
berths could be filled. The Chief of Trans- mands, or by subordinate elements of
portation preferred movements in special those commands acting within policies
cars to movements in cars that were avail- established by the respective commanders.
able to the public and encouraged post Orders for movements to ports of em-
transportation officers to combine small barkation for shipment overseas always
groups whenever possible so that special originated in OPD, which acted in ac-
cars would be justified. Similarly, move- cordance with strategic decisions of the
ments by special trains were preferred to Joint Chiefs of Staff and in collaboration
movements by special cars attached to with the AGF, the AAF, and the ASF. The
regular trains. When special troop cars Mobilization Division of ASF headquar-
were added to regular trains the public ters, in addition to preparing movement
facilities were likely to be overcrowded, orders for ASF troops, prepared the sup-
especially the dining cars, and this situ- ply and transportation sections of move-
ation was a source of dissatisfaction and ment orders relating to AGF and AAF
disorder. Also, the assignment of admin- troops. The Mobilization Division also
istrative and medical staffs to special troop acted as a co-ordinating agency between
trains and the use of troop kitchen cars OPD, the commanders of the forces, and
simplified the problems of control and the Chief of Transportation with regard to
discipline. Special trains, moreover, could the actual movement of troops and their
be routed from Army post to Army post, equipment.79 The Chief of Transportation,
whereas when troops were moved by reg- however, maintained direct contact with
ular trains the Army was obliged either to all these agencies from the earliest stages
furnish motor transportation to and from of their planning in order to advise them
the railway terminals or to pay switching on transportation matters and to obtain
charges for the transfer of special cars be- information on impending movements as
tween Army posts and railway terminals.78 far in advance as possible.
The transportation officers at Army
Procedures within the War Department posts where troop movements originated
for the accomplishment of troop move- had an exacting role, and the Chief of
ments involved a number of agencies. The Transportation saw to it that they were
authority to initiate movement orders was fully instructed.80 They obtained routings
different for different types of moves.
Domestic movements necessitated by per- 78
AR 55-125, 9 Jan 43, sub: Sleeping Car and
manent changes of station might be Similar Accommodations, par. 2a(2); Interv with
ordered by the Operations Division of the Morris, 4 Aug 50, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass.
79
WD Cir 102, 15 Apr 43, par. 1; WD Cir 358, 4
War Department General Staffer by the Sep 44, Sec. IV; ASF Manual M 301, 31 Jan 44, Sec.
commanding generals of the Army 201.04 Mob Div.
80
Ground Forces, the Army Air Forces, or For appointments and duties of local transporta-
tion officers, see AR 55-105, 29 Dec 42, par. 3, and
the Army Service Forces for troops of their Changes 13, 22 May 44, and 14, 15 Dec 44; AR 55-5,
respective commands. Domestic move- 5 Oct 42, par. 5; WD Cir 229, 24 Sep 43, par. 6.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 35

and ordered transportation equipment for fact that he had no command authority
individuals and small groups traveling over them imposed handicaps.
from their posts, and they administered
the arrangements made by the Chief of Mobilization and Conservation
Transportation for the movement of larger of Railroad Equipment
groups, thus working closely with local
railway officials and bus operators. They Obtaining rail equipment promptly
collaborated with the transportation of- and using it in the most effective manner
ficers of the units to be moved to insure were basic problems that confronted the
that both personnel and impedimenta Transportation Corps throughout the war.
were ready for shipment and loaded ac- Obviously these were matters in which
cording to plan. They were responsible for thorough co-operation between the mili-
providing adequate tracks, ramps, and tary authorities and the carriers was
other transportation facilities at their sta- necessary.
tions. In addition to the War Department When troops were moved in small
regulations and circulars pertaining to groups in regular train service or in special
passenger traffic, the Chief of Transporta- cars attached to regular trains, the rail-
tion prepared a "commercial traffic bulle- roads' task of providing the necessary
tin," which was issued from time to time equipment was relatively simple, but
"by order of the Secretary of War," to when large movements were to be accom-
provide detailed instructions for local plished a different situation obtained.
81
transportation officers. He also endeav- Large movements were made in special
ored through field conferences conducted trains and the troops' organic equipment
by his Traffic Control Division and fre- was usually transferred at the same time,
quent visits by representatives of his zone so that in addition to sleeping cars and
transportation offices to keep the post coaches, baggage cars, kitchen cars, and
transportation officers fully informed freight cars were required. In divisional
regarding the detailed instructions ema- movements hundreds of cars of all types
nating from Washington and the reasons had to be assembled at the station of
for the procedures prescribed. origin, and this sometimes meant drawing
on numerous railroads and deadheading
The policies and procedures pertaining the cars for considerable distances. When
to Army passenger traffic were necessarily heavy troop movements suddenly became
complex. Throughout the war the Chief necessary following the attack on Pearl
of Transportation despite some opposition Harbor, one of the railroads' biggest prob-
was able to maintain the key policythat lems was that of gathering the required
of centralized control over the routing and equipment at the training camps
movements of groups of more than one promptly. Many of the camps were far
carload. The Chief of Transportation also removed from railway centers where cars
had a good measure of success in the basic
task of obtaining a high level of perform- 81
The bulletin was discontinued for a period for
ance from the many local transportation economy reasons but was reinstated by WD Cir 305,
22 Nov 43, Sec. II. WD TM 55-205, 25 Aug 44, sub:
officers, although lack of experience on Trans in ZI, was primarily for the guidance of local
the part of some of those officers and the transportation officers.
36 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

80TH DIVISION TROOPS ARRIVING AT CAMP FORREST, Tennessee, June 1942.

usually were accumulated for commercial well as the prompt loading and orderly
purposes. As the war progressed ways had movement of so many trains to a single
to be found of solving this problem. destination, was a feat that required care-
The number of cars required for divi- ful planning and meticulous execution.
sional movements varied according to the Divisional movements, although many
type of the division and the circumstances of them were made during the war, were
under which the move was made. In the not an everyday occurrence. Most move-
summer of 1942 the following equipment ments by special train involved smaller
was used in moving a triangular infantry troop units or groups of replacements, and
division: 442 tourist sleepers, 48 standard many such movements were started each
sleepers, 89 baggage cars, 90 kitchen cars, day of the war. As already stated, during
1,124 flatcars, and 89 boxcars. The total the spring of 1943, when organized troop
of 1,882 cars moved in 63 trains. At about movements were especially heavy, the
the same time, the equipment needed for Chief of Transportation reported that spe-
moving an armored division embraced cial troop trains were departing from their
382 tourist sleepers, 23 standard sleepers, loading points at intervals of about six
1 baggage car, 67 kitchen cars, and 1,748 minutes throughout the twenty-four-hour
flatcars. These 2,221 cars moved in 69 day. More significant, perhaps, are the
trains.82 It is obvious even to the layman
that the assembling of so many cars and 82
See author's Memo, 6 Aug 42, sub: Rail Equip
the required number of locomotives, as for Moving a Division, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 37

TABLE 3RAILROAD CARS USED BY THE ARMY IN MOVING ORGANIZED GROUPS AND
THEIR IMPEDIMENTA ROUTED BY THE CENTRAL ROUTING AUTHORITY IN WASHINGTON:
DECEMBER 1941-DECEMBER 1945 a

a
Up to January 1943 groups of fifty or more were routed in Washington; thereafter forty or more. Figures are estimated through
August 1942.
b
Includes standard sleepers, tourist sleepers, and government-owned troop sleepers.
c
Flatcars were lumped with boxcars in 1945.
d
Indicates increased use of hospital cars and kitchen cars.
Source: Data originally compiled by Traffic Control Division, OCT, from reports of Association of American Railroads, and reworked
for a statistical volume of this series, now in preparation.

figures given in Table 3, which indicate pass and do not include personnel of the
that in one month (April 1943) a total of other armed services.
36,598 passenger and freight cars were The amount of equipment at the
used by the Army in special troop trains disposal of the carriers to meet the mili-
or as special cars attached to regular tary need and the heavy civilian demand
trains, and that the monthly average dur- was relatively constant throughout the
ing 1943 was 28,815 cars. These figures, it war. Although a special effort was made
should be noted, do not comprehend troop to keep all cars in serviceable condition,
movements made in regular train service some had to be retired, and the ordering
or troops traveling on furlough, leave, or of new equipment was severely limited by
38 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

TABLE 4PASSENGER TRAIN CARS OWNED OR LEASED BY THE CARRIERS AT THE END OF
EACH YEAR: 1940-1945

a
Includes coaches, combination coaches, parlor, sleeping, dining, club, lounge, and observation cars.
b
Includes government-owned special troop sleepers and kitchen cars, as well as standard and tourist sleepers and parlor cars.
Source: Association of American Railroads, Railroad Transport, A Statistical Record, 1911-1948 (Washington, November 1948), p. 21.

the demand that the military program Responsibility for assigning adequate
made on steel and other strategic mate- railway equipment to troop movements
rials. Under these circumstances the in- and for enforcing economy in its use rested
crease in the total number of passenger primarily with two agencies representing
cars, including those built for the govern- the Army and the railroads respectively.
ment, was modest indeed. (Table 4) Steps The Army's interests were the responsibil-
were taken to eliminate some of the less ity of the Traffic Control Division in the
essential travel. The carriers themselves Office of the Chief of Transportation, and
combined or "pooled" certain of their more particularly the Passenger Branch of
services to resort areas in order to release that division. While the chief of the divi-
equipment for other purposes. They con- sion and his deputy dealt with matters of
verted more than 800 lounge and parlor policy and participated in conferences re-
cars into the more necessary sleepers and lating to especially large movements, the
coaches. The Office of Defense Transpor- Passenger Branch handled the day-to-day
tation stopped the operation of special arrangements. It maintained contact with
trains for conventions and sporting events the carriers, gave them information re-
and limited the operation of extra trains garding contemplated troop movements
and extra sections on the heavily traveled and the numbers and types of cars re-
83
routes. A campaign was undertaken to quired, and checked to insure that the
encourage the voluntary curtailment of proper equipment was promptly provided.
unnecessary travel. Despite these measures It dealt with local Army transportation
the increase in traffic far outstripped the officers to insure that arrangements were
increase in passenger accommodations, made for the prompt entrainment and
and the wartime demand was met chiefly detrainment of troops and that the cars
through a concerted effort for the more 83
For a summary of these controls, see Office of De-
efficient and intensive employment of the fense Transportation, Civilian War Transport (Wash-
equipment on hand. ington, 1948), pp. 81-86.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 39

were fully loaded and eventually turned Transportation assumed control over the
back to the railroads in good condition. In employment of all passenger, baggage,
the fall of 1942 the Car Service Section and express cars of the railroads. W. C.
was established in the Passenger Branch to Kendall, chairman of the AAR Car Serv-
review all prospective troop movements ice Division, was appointed agent to ad-
and prepare co-ordinated plans that would minister this control, subject to the general
avoid deadheading equipment so far as supervision of the Director of the ODT
possible. The staff of this section consisted Railway Transport Department.85
of specialists who had been employed by The co-operation of the Pullman
the Pullman Company or the railroads.84 Company in supplying equipment re-
The Military Transportation Section, mained on a voluntary basis. Control
Car Service Division, Association of Amer- over the distribution of its equipment was
ican Railroads, represented the rail car- exercised by a superintendent of car serv-
riers in these matters. All requests for ice at the company's headquarters in Chi-
equipment and train schedules, as well as cago. He was aided by branch offices
complaints regarding the railroads' han- scattered throughout the country, which
dling of movements, were channeled kept him informed of the location of equip-
through it. The fact that the MTS office ment and the prospective demand in their
was located adjacent to the Traffic Control localities. The Military Transportation
Division in the Pentagon facilitated the Section made daily reports to the Pullman
constant interchange of information and Company regarding the future needs of
the joint planning in which the two agen- the armed forces for sleeping cars in the
cies engaged. While the MTS dealt di- various districts. On the basis of these re-
rectly with the individual railroads to a ports, Pullman equipment was assigned to
large extent, it was aided in the perform- six regional distribution points, which
ance of its functions by thirteen district controlled its further assignment. In July
offices of the Car Service Division whose 1945, in view of the extraordinarily heavy
jurisdictions covered the entire United demand for sleepers on the Atlantic sea-
States. board for troops being redeployed and re-
Although the Military Transportation patriated from Europe, the car service
Section had no direct authority over the superintendent of the Pullman Company
employment of the carriers' passenger placed a representative in the office of the
equipment, the railroads followed its in- MTS to obtain information regarding
structions because those instructions were requirements as early as possible and to
based on military requirements. For the co-ordinate the actual assignment of
same reason the Pullman Company en- equipment.
deavored to provide the cars requested by The usual procedure by which equip-
the MTS. This voluntary co-operation ment was obtained for a troop movement
worked satisfactorily until the redeploy- was as follows: As soon as the Traffic Con-
ment of troops began after the surrender trol Division had definite advice that a
of Germany. Then, because it was evident group was to be moved, it obtained full
that much heavier demands would have information regarding the composition of
to be made on the carriers in order to sat- 84
OCT HB Monograph 22, pp. 33-36, 81-84.
isfy the military need, the Office of Defense 85
ODT GO 55, effective 17 Jul 45.
40 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

the group from the Army transportation was attended, as circumstances required,
officer at the station of origin. This infor- by representatives of the post transporta-
mation included the unit designations, the tion officer, the commander of the port of
number of officers and enlisted men in- destination, the G-4 of the division to be
volved, the weight and measurement of moved, the Military Transportation Sec-
the impedimenta, the anticipated time tion, the Car Service Division district
and place of entrainment, and the types of office, the territorial passenger association,
rolling stock desired.86 After the route had the Pullman Company, and the railroads
been established, in the manner already involved. The conference took place soon
described, the Traffic Control Division re- after the movement order was issued, usu-
quested the Military Transportation Sec- ally several weeks in advance of the depar-
tion to arrange for the execution of the ture date. The requirements for passenger
movement. The MTS notified the Car and freight equipment were studied, the
Service Division manager in the district in sources of the equipment were agreed on,
which the movement was to originate and the make-up and loading schedules of the
also the originating railroad. The rail line several trains were planned, and train
then began assembling the required schedules from point of origin to destina-
coaches, baggage cars, and freight cars tion were established. These arrangements
and notified the appropriate Pullman were considered tentative, but changes did
Company representative of the number of not often become necessary.88
sleepers needed. If the required number of Despite the close co-operation of all
sleepers was not provided, the rail line parties and the measures taken by the
undertook to provide coaches instead. If Army to ease the carriers' problems, there
the railroad found it difficult to obtain were delays in furnishing equipment.
sufficient equipment to meet the need, the During the greater part of the war about
district manager of the Car Service Divi- 25 percent of the railroads' 14,000 line-
sion was called on for help. If he was un- haul coaches were in military service, and
able to overcome the difficulty, he asked after redeployment began the percentage
for aid from the MTS, which could bring was larger. The railroads understandably
heavier pressure to bear on the carriers endeavored to protect the regular services
serving the area.87 that the Office of Defense Transportation
A special procedure was adopted by the permitted them to maintain, while at the
Traffic Control Division when an excep- same time trying to meet the military re-
tionally large port-bound movementa quirements. The demand for coaches
division or an equivalent number of being what it was, this policy called for
troopswas to be made. The assembling exceedingly close calculation and careful
of so much equipment inevitably posed a management, and sometimes the available
difficult problem for the carriers, and equipment could not be made to meet all
strict compliance with schedules was of needs promptly. When the departure of
great importance. In such instances the movements was advanced by the Army
Traffic Control Division sent a representa-
tive to the station of origin, where all 86
AR 55-130, 28 Dec 42, par. 8b.
arrangements for the movement were 87
OCT HB Monograph 22, pp. 38-46.
88
worked out in conference. This conference Ibid., pp. 48-50.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 41

CHART 2REVENUE PASSENGER-MILES ACCOMPLISHED IN PULLMAN-OPERATED SLEEPING


CARS AND PARLOR CARS: 1939-1945*

* Military traffic includes the personnel of all armed forces moved in organized groups in special cars and special
trains/ regular traffic includes civilian and military personnel who traveled in regularly scheduled trains. Includes traffic
hauled in government-owned, Pullman-operated troop sleepers.
** Distribution between regular and troop traffic not available for 1939 and 1940.
Source: Annual Reports, Pullman, Incorporated.

ahead of the time originally contemplated, members of the armed forces in organized
89
the problem was intensified. groups. Yet in each year the passenger-
The Pullman Company frequently miles accomplished in regular Pullman
failed to supply the sleepers required by services (sleeping car and parlor car) ex-
the Army. Beginning early in the war all ceeded the mileage accomplished in han-
of its tourist sleepersabout 2,200 in dling organized movements for the armed
numberwere regularly assigned to move- forces. (Chart 2) Like the railroads, the
ments of the armed forces, and a varying Pullman Company endeavored to protect
number of its 4,000 standard sleepers were its regular services while complying with
so utilized. Late in 1943 the new govern- requests from the military authorities.
ment-owned troop sleepers began to enter It was understood that if the Pullman
its fleet. At the end of 1944 the Pullman Company could not supply sleepers as re-
Company indicated that about half of its quested, the railroads and the Traffic Con-
sleeping car equipment had been steadily trol Division would be notified not later
engaged in troop transportation. A few 89
Annual Rpts, Pullman Incorporated, 1944, p. 5;
days before Germany surrendered, the 1945, p. 6; AAR, Interesting Facts About the Rail-
company stated that since Pearl Harbor it roads, 3 May 45; all in OCT HB Topic Pullman
had transported more than 26,000,000 Company.
42 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

than 5:00 P. M. on the second day before part of the war was the short notice given
the contemplated departure. In such a the Chief of Transportation by the com-
case, the originating railroad undertook, mands ordering troop movements and the
with the aid of the Association of Ameri- consequent short time allowed the carriers
can Railroads when necessary, to provide to assemble cars. An inquiry covering a
coaches in substitution for sleepers. If it period of ninety days showed that in about
was found that coaches could not be 56 percent of the cases the notice was less
made available, such information was to than forty-eight hours ahead of actual
92
be given to the Traffic Control Division starting time. Beginning early in 1943
not later than noon of the day preceding corrective measures were taken, under
the movement. In this event, the division which the Chief of Transportation was in-
in consultation with the military authority formed regarding prospective movements
that had ordered the movement deter- as soon as the plans began to take definite
mined whether that movement should be shape and was notified of actually ordered
postponed or the equipment obtained by movements at least seventy-two hours in
93
deferring another movement of lower pri- advance in all except emergency cases.
ority.90 The Traffic Control Division im- Through frequent contacts with the
pressed upon the carriers, however, that it agencies that issued troop movement
would not be satisfied simply with notifi- orders, the Passenger Branch was able to
cation that sleepers or coaches were not gather information that enabled it to visu-
available. It took the position that, while alize the requirements for railroad equip-
postponements might become necessary, ment far ahead. When sizable move-
there should be relatively few and that the mentsregiments or largerwere being
carriers should make extraordinary efforts planned, the branch was given an oppor-
to avoid this necessity. tunity to look over the equipment situation
No purpose would be served by pre- and the progress of movements already
senting in detail the many complaints scheduled, and then to indicate to the
registered by the Chief of Transportation
because sleepers or coaches were not sup- 90
See WD CTB 35, 10 Jul 45, sub: Troop Mvmts
plied as requested or by reviewing the RR Equip.
91
The following documents illustrate the com-
explanations offered by the carriers. Gen- plaints filed by the Chief of Transportation: Ltr,
eral Gross and his staff sometimes felt that Morris to Gass, 7 Dec 43, OCT 511 Main 64884; Ltr,
the carriers had been negligent, either in Morris to Gass, 19 Feb 44, OCT 511; Ltr, Morris to
Gass, 27 Apr 44, OCT 511 Rail and Motor Mvmts;
not providing equipment or in not giving Ltr, Morris to Trunk Line-Central Pass Assn, 30 Aug
sufficient advance notice that requests for 44, OCT 511 Fort Meade (Main 20363); Ltr, Morris
cars could not be met. In most cases the to Western Mil Bur, 30 Sep 44, OCT 511; Ltr, Lt. Col
Bert E. White to Pullman Co., 27 Feb 45, OCT 531.7
carriers believed that there were justifying Train Service.
circumstances.91 92
Army Service Forces Monthly Progress Report
(hereafter cited as ASF MPR), May 43, p. 60. Such
short notice was more likely to occur with the smaller
While pressing the carriers to meet its than with the larger units.
requests for equipment fully and promptly, 93
Memo, CG SOS for CGs All SvCs, COs All Posts,
the Army undertook to improve its own et al., 8 Dec 42, sub: Co-ordination of Troop Mvmts,
AG 370.5 (11-24-42); WD Cir 102, 15 Apr 43, par.
procedures and so alleviate the shortage of 2b(4); WD Cir 358, 4 Sep 44, Sec. IV, par. 2b(1);
cars. One of the problems during the early OCT HB Monograph 22, pp. 71-81.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 43

commands concerned on what dates addi- to advance or retard the actual time of
tional movements could be best handled. departure brought very substantial results
As soon as such movements were tenta- in the conservation of railway equipment.
tively fixed, they were posted on a control The most spectacular example was the
board in the Passenger Branch from which utilization of the same railway equipment
the branch worked in its endeavor to to move seven divisions from seven differ-
avoid scheduling too much traffic from a ent installations with only a small amount
particular area during a particular period. of deadhead mileage. The Car Service
This board sometimes showed divisional Section of the Passenger Branch, on the
movements six months in advance of their basis of its day-to-day planning to improve
departure.94 the utilization of passenger cars, calcu-
Another important Army measure lated that between the time of its estab-
affecting the employment of rail equip- lishment in November 1942 and the end
ment was the investing of the Chief of of hostilities it enabled 41,000 sleeping
Transportation with authority to change cars to make trips that otherwise could
the departure time of troop movements not have been made. This meant addi-
when the equipment situation warranted. tional berths for at least 1,400,000
Such authority was given his office in soldiers.96
April 1943 for movements routed in Wash- The Army also undertook to eliminate
ingtonthat is, groups of forty or more practices at camps and other installations
and the same authority was soon given to that were wasteful of car time. Before the
post transportation officers in regard to United States entered the war, post trans-
the smaller groups that they routed.95 portation officers frequently called in rail-
Emergency movements naturally were road equipment as soon as a unit received
excepted from these arrangements. Under warning of an impending move. This gave
this procedure the orders covering non- the carriers opportunity to draw equip-
emergency movements gave approximate ment from sources where it could be most
dates of departure or dates between which readily spared and also enabled the post
the movements should be made, and the transportation officer and the commander
Chief of Transportation or the post trans- of troops to inspect the cars thoroughly
portation officers could advance or retard and to entrain at their convenience. Dur-
the time of departure within the limits ing the war this leisurely method of using
stated. Thus a movement destined for a equipment could not be permitted. Soon
particular installation could be put for- after Pearl Harbor all agencies issuing
ward or delayed so that the same equip- warning orders were directed to include in
ment could be used for a movement leaving such orders a stipulation that delivery of
the same or a nearby installation. The 94
Interv with Morris, 16 Aug 50, OCT HB Traf
ability to adjust the time of departure also Contl Div Pass.
95
facilitated the consolidation of small Memo, CofT for ACofS for Opns ASF, 19 Mar
43, sub: Change in WD Cir 193; Memo, C of Traf
groups to insure the full utilization of car Contl Div for C of Adm Div OCT, 29 Jul 43; both in
space. OCT 511; WD Cir 102, 15 Apr 43, par. 26; WD Cir
The advance information received by 229, 24 Sep 43, pars. 1 and 2.
96
Morris monograph, cited above, p. 40; Interv
the Chief of Transportation regarding con- with Morris, 16 Aug 50, OCT HB Traf Contl Div
templated movements and his authority Pass.
44 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS
99
railroad cars would not be requested until Control Division's work as well.
the actual time for departure had been Although the efficient employment of
97
fixed. Cancellations of movement orders passenger cars was the chief problem,
or deferments of movements shortly before attention also had to be given to the eco-
departure time also were wasteful of nomical use of freight cars in moving troop
equipment, since the assigned cars were impedimenta. This was true particularly
kept idle until they could be reassigned. of flatcars, which were required for many
The Chief of Transportation undertook to large items, such as trucks, tanks, and
impress upon military authorities the ne- artillery. Early in the war the Chief of
cessity of avoiding last-minute changes in Transportation put forward the idea that
98
movement orders so far as possible. a considerable saving of freight cars could
In its efforts to improve the utilization be accomplished by permanently assign-
of railway equipment and bring about ing heavy organic equipment to training
closer co-ordination in handling military centers instead of moving this equipment
movements, the Traffic Control Division each time a unit was moved. The system
supplemented the written instructions to was tried first with motor vehicles and
the field with regional conferences. Fol- later with other equipment. It not only
lowing the inauguration of new procedures saved railway cars but also spared the
for troop movements in the spring of 1943, government heavy freight costs. In April
Colonel Morris, as chief of the Passenger 1943, Lt. Gen. Lesley J. McNair, com-
Branch, held a series of conferences manding the Army Ground Forces, re-
throughout the country, which were at- ported that, in moving four armored di-
tended by the transportation officers of visions, two motorized divisions, and one
Army installations and representatives of infantry division, the new system had re-
the Association of American Railroads, duced the requirement for rail equipment
the territorial passenger associations, and by 8,743 cars and had saved the govern-
the individual rail lines. Regional confer- ment more than $2,500,000 in transporta-
ences held in the headquarters cities of the tion charges. He also reported substantial
nine service commands and at San Fran- savings in the movement of smaller
cisco in February and March 1944 were units.100
attended by Colonels Williamson and At some Army training camps the
Lasher, chief and deputy chief of the inadequacy of rail facilities on the reserva-
Traffic Control Division, and by the heads tions and the limited capacity of the con-
of their traffic branches. Army transporta- necting rail lines hindered dispatch of
tion officers and railroad representatives 97
Memo, ACofS G-4 for ACofS G-3, 9 Jan 42, sub:
were informed explicitly concerning the Ordering RR Equip, G-4/33739-5.
98
performance that was expected in the ac- Memo, CofT for TAG, 23 May 44, sub: Mvmt of
Units, OCT 511 Rail and Motor Mvmts.
complishment of troops movements. They 99
Memo, CofT for CG AAF, 15 Jun 43; Memo,
were given full opportunity to ask ques- Williamson for CofT, 16 Jun 43, sub: Confs at SvC
tions, make complaints, or otherwise pre- Hq; both in OCT 511; ASF Cir 167, 29 Dec 43, sub:
Conf, Mvmt of Troops, Etc; Rpt, Traf Contl Conf, 3
sent their problems. Similar "field forums" Feb-6 Mar 44, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Misc; Rpt,
were held at later dates. The consensus Traf Contl Div, FY 1944, pp. 4-5, OCT HB Traf
was that excellent results were achieved in Contl Div Rpts.
100
Ltr, Gen McNair to CG ASF, 6 Apr 43, sub:
this wayresults affecting not only troop Saving Rail Trans, OCT 511 Co-ordination
movements but other aspects of the Traffic Mvmts.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 45

PLANNING ROUTINGS AND ASSIGNMENTS OF RAIL EQUIPMENT


(From left) Col. Edmund C. R. Lasher, Col. William J. Williamson, and Col. I. Sewell
Morris of the Traffic Control Division, with Arthur H. Gass of the Association of American
Railroads.

passenger and freight cars and caused a loading ramps, or other facilities were
loss of car time. This was often true of new necessary to insure prompt dispatch of
installations that were built early in the railway cars, and later similar action was
emergency without due regard to trans- taken whenever the movement of traffic
portation requirements. 101 The situation at an installation was found to be
at the California-Arizona Maneuver Area, sluggish.102
located in a remote region on branch rail
lines, was an outstanding example of the The combined efforts of the Transpor-
difficulty, and at one time the accumula- tation Corps and the carriers to utilize
tion of cars became so heavy that a four- 101

day stop order was placed on further graph,Wardlow, p. 49.


op. cit., pp. 316-17; Morris mono-

shipments into the area. Soon after the 102


Memo, ACofS G-4 for CofE and OQMG, 17 Jan
United States entered the war a general 42, sub: Rail Facilities, G-4/33821; Memo, CG SOS
for CofT, 31 Aug 42, sub: Rail Facilities for Emer-
survey of Army installations was made to gency Mvmts; Memo, C of Rail Div OCT for CofT,
determine whether additional trackage, 8 Oct 42; last two in OCT 531.7 Gen.
46 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

railway passenger equipment with utmost imenta. Special troop cars attached to
effectiveness met with a large measure of regular passenger trains also received
success. Yet there were occasions when the main numbers and were closely con-
numbers of cars or the desired types were trolled, but for obvious reasons the control
not provided as requested by the Army. could not be as broad as in the case of the
While late requests sometimes were re- special troop train moving on its own
sponsible, failures were attributable schedule.
chiefly to the endeavor of the carriers The war brought changes in the size
the railroads and the Pullman Com- and make-up of troop trains. While maxi-
panyto maintain their regular services mum length was desirable from the stand-
as fully as possible while also meeting the point of conserving locomotives and train
demands of the armed forces. No urgent crews, it was necessary to avoid making
troop movements were postponed for lack trains so long that they created operating
of equipment, but the Chief of Transpor- problems and delays. Early in the emer-
tation protested any delay that in his gency the Army rescinded a regulation
judgment could have been avoided. He limiting mixed trains to twenty-five cars,
also protested the failure to provide sleep- and took the position that when it became
ing cars and the consequent transporta- necessary from a military standpoint to
tion of troops in day coaches on long trips, disregard certain state laws limiting the
and he felt that both the Pullman Com- length of trains this should be done.104
pany and the Office of Defense Transpor- The Army authorized the railroads to
tation were at fault in not withdrawing consolidate trains en route provided no
more sleepers from regular services. The delay or compromise of military security
situation became especially acute after re- was involved. It also authorized the rail-
deployment began, even though much roads to operate long trains from points of
larger numbers of both sleepers and origin and to split them en route, on the
coaches were placed in military service.103 condition that the military authorities
were informed in advance so that when
Special Troop Trains the trains were cut each section would be
self-sustaining.105 The arrangement of
The troop train was not merely a mode cars in a train was determined finally by
of transportation, it was an institution. railroad officials, but the desires of the
Extensive planning preceded its depar- military authorities were complied with
ture, and thorough organization and care- as far as possible.106
ful control were necessary throughout. Its
punctual departure and arrival were mat- 103
See below, Ch. III.
ters on which the Chief of Transportation 104
WD Cir 130, 5 Nov 40, Sec. II; Wardlow, op.
placed great stress. Each train was given cit., p. 349. A typical troop train consisted of 12 to 15
a "main" number, or symbol, and until it coaches or sleepers, 2 baggage cars, and 2 kitchen
cars. A typical mixed train consisted of 6 to 8 coaches
had delivered its load at the destination it or sleepers, 1 or 2 baggage cars, 1 kitchen car, and 25
was as much a military entity as the in- to 30 freight cars.
105
stallation from which it started. This was Memo, Morris for MTS, 16 Sep 42, sub: Con-
solidations; Ltr, Morris to IMC, 15 Jan 44; both in
true whether the train carried troops only OCT 511.
or was a mixed train of troops and imped- 106
OCT HB Monograph 22, pp. 90-94.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 47

The Army imposed various safety re- the shortage of labor in railroad shops and
quirements with respect to troop trains. yards made careful inspection necessary.
In view of the shortage of equipment it No record has been found of the number
was not feasible to insist on all-steel cars, of cars rejected after inspection, but it is
so that cars with wooden bodies on steel obvious that with equipment scarce and
frames were accepted, but all cars were with every effort being made to avoid de-
required to be in good operating condi- lays a considerable tolerance had to be
tion, with secure platforms and steps. exercised. Thus it was that during the
Passageways between cars were to be demobilization period, when the shortage
guarded by diaphragms or safety chains. of equipment was being most severely felt,
The Chief of Transportation accepted the commander of the San Francisco Port
chains only as a temporary expedient and of Embarkation authorized certain offi-
urged the installation of diaphragms as cers of his organization to reject cars that
promptly as possible. Troop train com- they considered unfit, but at the same
manders were directed to issue orders be- time he cautioned them that in so doing
fore departure forbidding troops to ride they should consider not only the types
on platforms or on the tops of cars, to and condition of the cars and the length
move from car to car unnecessarily, or to of the journey but also the backlog of
leave the train without specific authority. troops waiting to be moved out of the port
The commanders were also instructed to and the scheduled arrival of additional
take whatever additional steps might be troops from overseas.109
essential to safety. At the end of a trip troop train equip-
A peacetime prohibition against the ment was again inspected by the troop
shipment of explosives in the same train train commander and by representatives
with troops had to be lifted during the of the railroad and the Pullman Com-
war, but any such shipments were subject pany. This inspection had the dual pur-
to strict regulation. Explosives, excluding pose of determining how satisfactory the
small arms ammunition, in addition to service rendered by the carriers had been
being handled in accordance with the and whether the carriers had a claim
safety regulations of the Interstate Com- against the government because of dam-
merce Commission, were placed in cars at age inflicted on their property by the
the rear of the trains and were separated troops.110
front troops by at least one "buffer" car.107 The Chief of Transportation was espe-
Cars bearing explosives were sealed and cially concerned about the condition of
were under guard at all train stops. 107
As soon as rail equipment was deliv- 2d Ind, TQMG for 8th Corps Area, 3 Feb 41,
OCT 435 Steel Pass Equip; AR 55-145, 30 Sep 42,
ered to an installation from which troops par. 14e, and Changes 1, 19 Dec 42; Memo, Pass Br
were to be moved, it was inspected by the OCT for MTS, 28 Oct 45, sub: Kitchen-Baggage
post transportation officer, the troop train Cars, OCT 080 AAR.
108
AR 55-145, 30 Sep 42, par. 4.
commander, and a representative of the 109
Memo, CG SFPE for COs Camp Stoneman,
originating railroad. 108 The inspections Camp Knight, et al., 16 Nov 45, sub: Rail Equip for
dealt with the structural condition of the Main Trains, OCT 511.
110
AR 55-145, 30 Sep 42, par. 14l; Ltrs, Lasher to
cars and with their cleanliness. The in- Buford, 22 Jan 44 and 29 Apr 44, OCT 511 (AR
tensity with which the cars were used and 55-145).
48 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

railway cars used in moving troops to the sponse to one complaint the manager of
ports for oversea shipment since this had a the MTS stated: "I am convinced that the
bearing on morale. In the spring of 1944 best available equipment was furnished
he directed the commanders of the New for this main, but it is obvious that the
113
York and San Francisco Ports of Embar- best was none too good." The Chief
kation to appoint inspectors to examine of Transportation understood the situ-
all trains arriving at the staging areas ation, but he filed his protests nevertheless
under their control during June and to re- to insure that the carriers did not let down
port on both the condition of the rail in their efforts to provide the best cars
equipment and the service rendered en available. Complaints regarding poor
route. Such reports were to be entirely in- servicelack of cleanliness, water, or
dependent of those rendered by the troop heat, for examplewere in a different
train commanders. Out of the 250 trains category. The Chief of Transportation felt
inspected, unsanitary conditions were that these were conditions that could and
found in twenty cases and in a few in- should be avoided.114
stances the supply of drinking water had While pressing the carriers to fulfill
been insufficient. On the basis of this in- their responsibilities, the Chief of Trans-
formation, the continuance of these in- portation recognized that the military
spections was ordered. The inspectors authorities on trains often were lax in en-
were instructed not to concern themselves forcing sanitation regulations. As late as
too much with the absence of up-to-date the summer of 1944 following a discussion
facilities, although this might cause some of the situation with his field representa-
inconvenience to the troops, but to deal tives, General Gross reported to General
chiefly with conditions that were likely to Somervell: "This condition is not only a
affect soldier morale.111 discredit to the Army, but also reflects on
Since all requests for rail equipment for the railroad companies." 115 He recom-
troops routed in Washington were made mended that renewed and emphatic in-
to the Military Transportation Section, all structions be issued to all branches of the
complaints by the Army regarding such service, and this was done promptly. Train
equipment were channeled through that commanders were directed to give special
office, with copies to the respective terri- 111
OCT HB Monograph 22, pp. 99-100; ASF
torial passenger associations, and to the MPR, Jun 44. Sec. 3, p. 56.
112
Pullman Company when its equipment Memo, DC of Traf Contl Div for C of Pass Br,
28 Nov 44, sub: Complaints, OCT 531.7.
was involved.112 Such complaints were 113
Ltr, Gass to C of Traf Contl Div, 6 Jan 44, sub:
usually based on reports by the train com- Main 56123, OCT 080 AAR.
114
mander or the staging area inspector, but The following documents illustrate complaints:
Ltr, Lasher to Western Mil Bur, 24 Mar 44, and
they sometimes originated with the troops reply, 29 Mar 44; Ltr, Morris to IMC, 13 Jul 44, and
themselves. Each complaint was inves- reply, 22 Sep 44; Ltr, AAR to Lasher, 25 Sep 44, and
tigated by the carriers concerned, who re- reply, 6 Oct 44; all in OCT 531.7 Unsanitary Condi-
tions on Trains.
ported the circumstances through the 115
Min of Port and Zone Comdrs Conf, Chicago,
MTS to the Chief of Transportation. As 6-9 Jul 44, Mtg of Port and Zone Trans Offs, 7 Jul 44,
has been indicated, there was not much pp. 4, 5, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf; Memo,
Gross for Somervell, 13 Jul 44, sub: Unsanitary RR
that could be done to avoid the employ- Equip, OCT 531.7 Unsanitary Conditions on Trains;
ment of old or badly used cars. In his re- WD Cir 334, 16 Aug 44, Sec. III.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 49

attention to the matter and to enlist the departure of the train and ended with the
co-operation of all personnel under their delivery of the troops and their impedi-
control. Despite these efforts, however, menta to the commander of the new sta-
maintaining sanitary conditions on troop tion. Broadly stated, the train command-
trains remained a constant and annoying er's mission was to insure that the person-
problem. The psychology of the troops, nel and property placed in his charge
manpower shortages on the railroads, and were moved safely and in an orderly
the intensity with which the cars were manner. As commander of the troops on
used were the principal contributing the train he was responsible for their dis-
factors. cipline and for the maintenance of sani-
tary conditions en route. He controlled
The loading of a troop train was an op- the relationship between the military per-
eration for which the post transportation sonnel and the representatives of the rail-
officer and the commander of troops road and the Pullman Company on
shared responsibility. The post transpor- board. Sometimes he was outranked by
tation officer, having established the rail other officers on the train, in which case
equipment required for the move, checked tact was necessary in asserting his author-
to see that the equipment actually pro- ity. The troop train commander had
vided conformed to the requirements, under his supervision a train transporta-
prepared transportation requests upon the tion officer, who handled the passenger
carriers covering the troops and bills of requests and bills of lading and prepared
lading for the freight, and endeavored to such other papers and reports as were
adjust any differences that arose between necessary; a train medical officer, who
the commander of troops and the repre- looked after the health of the troops and
sentatives of the railroads. The com- the sanitary condition of the train; a train
mander of troops appointed an entrain- quartermaster, who was responsible for
ment officer, who planned the loading and the kitchen cars and the adequacy of their
supervised the operation to insure that it equipment and supplies; a train mess
was accomplished promptly and correctly. officer, who supervised the preparation
The entrainments at training camps dur- and serving of meals; and a baggage
ing the weeks immediately following Pearl officer when needed. In addition, there
Harbor revealed a lack of familiarity on was a car commander in each sleeper or
the part of transportation and entrain- coach to maintain order and discipline.
ment officers with the problems involved, Within this broad field the duties of the
and this led to mistakes and delays. Units troop train commander were varied and
of the field forces in the zone of interior exacting. In most instances an officer
were therefore directed to prepare loading served in this capacity only once and
plans and have them ready at all times hence took up his responsibilities without
and to hold practice entrainments for 116
Memo, Lasher for C of Trans Div OQMG, 14
both personnel and impedimenta. 116 Dec 41, sub: Troop Mvmts from Fort Bliss,
A train commander, who was usually G-4/33700; Memo, TAG for CGs All Armies, et al.,
assigned by the commander of the unit 19 Dec 41, sub: Troop Mvmts (Rail); Memo, TAG
being moved, was in charge of each troop for CG Field Forces, 24 Dec 41, sub: Troop Mvmts by
Rail; last two in AG 370.5 (9-10-41), Sec. 1.
117
train. His command began with the 117
AR 55-145, 30 Sep 42, par. 14.
50 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

previous experience. Usually the time Even with better equipment, the problem
available for studying the regulations and of keeping kitchen cars clean remained.
preparing for the task was short. The reg- The crews, which were newly assigned for
ulations were scattered and were inad- each trip, were often careless in using the
equate in some respects. Under these cir- facilities and disposing of waste, and, un-
cumstances and because of the pressure less very closely supervised, tended to shirk
under which the carriers were working, the work of putting the cars in order
conditions aboard troop trains often fell before releasing them to other movements.
short of the standards that the Chief of Sometimes the cars had to be released so
Transportation desired. Some improve- quickly that there was not time for proper
ment was achieved by assembling the cleaning.120
regulations and instructions in two pam- In the early part of the war troops fed
phlets, making them more accessible and from kitchen cars were given the regular
understandable.118 During redeployment garrison ration, but later they were pro-
and repatriation it was possible to appoint vided with a special troop train ration
commanders to serve regularly on troop better adapted to their inactive life while
trains operating between the ports of de- traveling. Since the supplies placed in kit-
barkation and the reception stations, and chen cars at the beginning of trips often
these officers gained competence through proved inadequate and the railroads were
experience. able to provide only limited quantities, a
chain of emergency supply points was
The feeding of troops from converted established at Army installations along
baggage cars and from the new govern- the principal routes.121 Thereafter the
ment-owned kitchen cars presented nu- railroads were called upon only for ice. Al-
merous problems. The baggage-kitchen though the subsistence of troops was a
cars were makeshifts, and aside from the function of the Quartermaster Corps, the
fact that the railroads could not spare Chief of Transportation took an active in-
enough of them to meet the Army's need, terest in it and in all other arrangements
they were difficult to keep in sanitary con- affecting the welfare of troops en route.
dition and lacked adequate refrigeration.
Consequently, when it was decided to 118
WDPamphlet 20-7, 14 Mar 44, and second edi-
build government-owned troop sleepers in tion, 20 Oct 44; WD Pamphlet 20-14, 16 Apr 45.
119
WD Memo W 30-7-42, 21 Oct 42, sub: Supplies
the spring of 1943, the advisability of con- for Kitchen Cars; OCT HB Monograph 22, pp.
structing specially designed troop kitchen 108-19; Morris monograph, pp. 54-55; Min of Port
cars at the same time was apparent. Four and Zone Comdrs Conf, Chicago, 6-9 Jul 44, after-
hundred such cars were ordered by the noon session, 7 Jul 44, pp. 4, 5, OCT HB PE Gen
Port Comdrs Conf.
Defense Plant Corporation at that time 120
E.g., see: Memo, 3d SvC for CofT, 21 Feb 44;
and four hundred were ordered two years Ltr, Morris to Gass, 25 Mar 44, and reply, 29 Mar 44;
later. These kitchen cars, although simply Ltr, Pullman Co. to Morris, 29 Mar 44; Ltr, IMC to
AAR, 2 May 44, and incl; Memo, CofT for BuPers,
designed and faulty in some respects, were 6 Jul 44; Ltr, Defense Plant Corporation to Morris,
a great improvement over the baggage- 24 Aug 44; all in OCT 531.3 Kitchen Cars.
121
kitchen cars because the kitchen equip- WD Cir 31, 2 Feb 42, Sec. IV; WD Cir 219, 20
Sep 43; WD Cir 341, 29 Dec 43; WD Cir 400, 11 Oct
ment was more nearly complete and more 44; WD SB 10-63, 4 May 44; TC Pamphlet 22, 27
suitable as well as permanently installed.119 Sep 44.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 51

Discipline on troop trains was essen- Conductors, with a regard for the inter-
tially a problem of command, just as it ests of their employers and sometimes with
was at an Army post. The responsibility impatience bred of long hours of contin-
rested with the train commander and the uous service, might be short-tempered.
car commanders serving under him, and There frequently was need for a diplo-
railroad personnel called upon them when matic but firm intermediary, and the
lack of discipline threatened damage to escort played that role. The Chief of
railroad property or interference with Transportation described the escorts as
train operation. Since the entrainment "indispensable," yet toward the end of the
usually took place at an Army installa- war when the manpower shortage made
tion, there was slight opportunity for the it difficult for the railroads to place such
troops to carry liquor on the trains; every officials on all trains, he had no alterna-
effort was made to prevent them from tive but to agree to their omission on the
obtaining it en route, for it frequently shorter daylight trips. 124
was the cause of unruliness and insub-
ordination. Disciplinary problems were The railroads were responsible for the
intensified when troop trains were side- maintenance of train schedules, but the
tracked for long periods while other trains Chief of Transportation kept this matter
passed through, and when troops making under close observation. Train command-
long trips in day coaches came alongside ers were required to telegraph the Traffic
other passengers ensconced in the com- Control Division the time of departure,
122
forts of Pullman cars. Yet the enforce- the time of arrival at destination, and any
ment of discipline was simpler on special unusual delays or incidents en route. The
troop trains, where there was adequate railroads telegraphed similar information
military authority, than on regular trains to the Military Transportation Section
when individual servicemen were travel- and also reported each time a troop train
ing in large numbers.123 passed an interchange pointthat is,
A railroad escort was assigned to each passed from the tracks of one railroad to
troop train by the originating carrier in those of another. If a train fell seriously
addition to the conductor and other mem- behind schedule, these agencies were in a
bers of the train crew and the Pullman position to act, but the initial action fre-
conductor and porters. The escort had no quently came from the train commander.
operating duties. He was a seasoned rail- When a delay occurred his first step was
roader who had usually had experience to approach the train escort or the train
with troop traffic and was therefore able conductor in an effort to correct the situ-
to be of considerable assistance to the ation. In the early part of the war if this
train commander. When friction arose course failed to get the desired results, the
between troops and railroad officials, as 122
it did on numerous occasions, the escort See SFPE, Summary of Problems Handled by
Troop Train Comdrs, 8 Oct 45; NYPE, Summary of
might provide the word or the act to calm Troop Train Comdrs RptsCamp Kilmer, 12 Oct
the situation. Troops were sometimes 45; both in OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass.
123
boisterous, dissatisfied with their accom- See below, pp. 67-70.
124
Ltr, to Richard C. Morse, Vice Pres Penn RR,
modations, careless of railroad property, 31 May 44, OCT 531.7 PRR Sp Train Sv; OCT HB
and disrespectful of railroad authority. Monograph 22, p. 104.
PREPARING FOOD IN A CONVERTED BAGGAGE-KITCHEN CAR
NEW TROOP KITCHEN CAR EQUIPPED WITH MODERN FACILITIES
54 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

train commander communicated with the commodation of the troops were upset,
division superintendent of the railroad. and sometimes seriously so. Delays might
This procedure did not work out satisfac- also disturb plans for using the cars in
torily for the Army, and the train com- other troop movements. Early arrivals
manders were directed to telegraph a were not common, but they occurred; late
report to the Traffic Control Division, arrivals were more frequent. Operating
which then sought the aid of the Military conditions became more difficult for the
Transportation Section in overcoming the carriers as the traffic increased without
delay. 1 2 5 commensurate increases in facilities and
During the early part of the emergency personnel. Recognizing this the Chief of
the railroads complained that their efforts Transportation allowed the railroads some
to maintain train schedules were some- latitude, but he maintained a firm atti-
times thwarted by requests of the train tude toward what appeared to be exces-
commanders for unscheduled stops to en- sive or unnecessary delays. This was par-
able troops to get rest or exercise. The ticularly true of trains destined for staging
carriers pointed out that most of the areas at the ports of embarkation, and
schedules requested by the A r m y made such trains were placed under special
no provision for such stops, although they controls. 1 2 7
were recognized as necessary on long trips. When objectionable delays occurred,
An attempt to correct this situation by the facts as reported to the Traffic Control
warning the officers concerned to be Division were placed before the Military
realistic in arranging schedules failed to Transportation Section, which in turn ob-
overcome the difficulty. Soon after the tained the railroads' side of the story. In
United States entered the war, therefore, some cases it was apparent that the car-
train commanders and other officers in riers concerned had not exercised suffi-
the field were forbidden to approach the cient care or foresight, and in such cases
railroads regarding unscheduled stops the MTS took further steps to emphasize
and were required to direct their requests the necessity of maintaining schedules. In
to The Quartermaster General, who at other cases, the MTS believed that the
that time had general responsibility for criticisms of the Traffic Control Division
the routing and delivery of troops, or to were unduly harsh, since in the handling
the Western Defense Command when of long movements under difficult operat-
trains were destined for points in that ing conditions situations were likely to
area. 1 2 6 After the techniques of arranging arise that could not be foreseen or pre-
and executing troop movements had been vented. Nevertheless, the division was
perfected through practice, the demand unrelenting. It recognized that on the
for unscheduled stops ceased to be a prob- whole the railroads were giving the Army
lem. excellent service, but it also knew that the
Departures from schedule attributable railroads were under heavy pressure with
to the railroads required the attention of 125
AR 55-145. 30 Sep 42. par. 14d, and Changes 5,
the Chief of Transportation throughout 14 Mar 44: OCT HB Monograph 22, pp. 57-59.
126
the war. When trains arrived at Army in- Ltr. IMC to TQMG. 4 Apr 41, AG 511
(1 1-3-34) AR 30-945; WD Cir 149, 24 Jul 41, Sec. I;
stallations ahead of or behind schedule, WD Cir 273. 31 Dec 41. Sec. II.
arrangements for the reception and ac- 127
See below. Ch. II.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 55

regular trains frequently running behind issued requiring that all identification
schedule, and the division's tactics were markings placed on passenger and freight
designed to keep the carriers constantly cars, such as those indicating the unit
alert to the Army's requirements and their moving or the destination, be removed
responsibility for putting military traffic before the departure of the cars from the
through promptly.128 military reservation. Movements were
classified as secret, confidential, or re-
Maintaining secrecy regarding troop stricted, and all communications and
train movements was a constant and diffi- information pertaining to such move-
cult problem. Secrecy was important be- ments had to be classified in the same
cause of the danger of sabotage on the way. Commanding officers were reminded
railroads and because the movement of of their responsibility for making all per-
large troop units into a port was indica- sonnel under their control familiar with
tion of an impending movement by ship security regulations.130 Despite these steps,
from the portinformation of value to violations of security continued even after
enemy U-boats. Yet the possibilities for the United States became an active bel-
"leaks" were numerous. The troops them- ligerent. Fortunately there were no un-
selves found a prospective move interest- toward events traceable to this lack of
ing news to pass on to their relatives and secrecy, and, with the added measures
friends. Certain information had to pass taken by the Army, the situation gradu-
between home stations, the Traffic Con- ally improved.
trol Division, the stations of destination, After Pearl Harbor steps were taken to
and the carriers in order that the move- increase troop train security. Explicit in-
ments might be properly executed, and structions were issued to transportation
there was always danger that the messages officers in the field and to the personnel of
would get into unauthorized hands or the Traffic Control Division regarding the
that some one who had received the infor- handling of messages relating to routings.
mation properly would use it carelessly. In the case of secret and confidential
Three months after Pearl Harbor G-2 movements, coded messages by teletype,
reported that leaks had been traced to in- telegraph, or radio were to be used when
stitutions that provided free rest rooms to time permitted; when there was not suffi-
servicemen, civic organizations and tele- cient time for such communications and
graph companies that sent representatives telephone or uncoded telegraph commu-
to meet troop trains, police radios report- nications were necessary, the movements
ing the movement of military motor con-
128
voys, and crowds assembled in railroad AR 55-155, 27 Nov 42, par. 1. For typical com-
plaints, see Memo, C of Traf Contl Div for CofT, 7
yards when troop trains were passing Aug 42, sub: Late Arrivals at Camp Shelby, OCT
through. 129 511; Ltr, Morris to Gass, 5 Apr 44, and reply, 20 Apr
The problem of secrecy was encoun- 44, OCT 511 Rail and Motor Mvmts; Ltr, Maj
Samuel N. Farley to Mr. Kelly, 24 Oct 45, and reply,
tered during the prewar emergency and a 15 Nov 45, OCT 531.7 Train AV.
tightening of the regulations was begun. 129
Memo, G-2 for CofS, 3 Mar 42, sub: Compro-
Military personnel were warned against mise of Mil Info; Memo, TAG for CG AAF, et al., 13
Mar 42; both in AG 350.05 (3-3-42)(3).
making public any information relating 130
AR 380-5, 18 Jun 41, Sec. VIII; WD Cir 198,
to troop movements. Instructions were 22 Sep 41, Sec. I; WD Cir 242, 22 Nov 41, Sec. V.
56 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

were to be identified only by reference to doing on behalf of troop comfort and


136
the movement orders, and information as morale. Railroads were not permitted
to the date, size, origin, and destination to use secret or confidential trains for
was to be omitted.131 The railroads were deadheading railroad personnel who were
required to make sure that information not performing duties on those trains. 137
regarding troop movements became avail- Military security as well as rapidity of
able only to employees requiring it, that transmission would have been improved
only the information necessary to the per- if all communications regarding troop
formance of their duties was given, and movements could have been sent over
that the employees were carefully in- Army-controlled cryptographic teletype
structed in safeguarding such informa- equipment. Late in 1942 the Chief of
132
tion. The Traffic Control Division, Transportation recommended the instal-
while pressing the railroads to use utmost lation of such connections between his
care, opposed suggestions that the carriers office and all Army installations con-
be required to put all communications cerned with troop movements. The pro-
regarding secret movements in code or to posal was approved by Services of Supply
send them by registered mail, since such headquarters, but not enough equipment
restrictions would have interfered with could be obtained to carry it out. Private
their operating efficiency.133 teletype communications were established
In the effort to limit the opportunity for only between the Traffic Control Division,
improper dissemination of information, a the ports of embarkation, and the Army
broad prohibition was set up against giv- regulating stations on the transcontinen-
ing information regarding troop move- 131
ments to representatives of nonmilitary Memo, Morris for All Routing Personnel, 7 Jun
42, sub: Telephone ConvClassified Troop Mvmts,
agencies and against permitting visitors to OCT 000.72 Gen; AR 55-130, 4 Jun 43, Changes 2,
go aboard troop trains. The Army de- par. 8b(1).
132
clined to authorize the Association of Memo, Lasher for Gass, 13 Dec 41, OCT 080
AAR; Memos, Gass to All RRs, 14 Dec 41, and 12
American Railroads to give regular infor- Jan 42; Memo, Gass for Lasher, 22 Jan 42; last three
mation to the Office of Defense Transpor- in OCT 370.5 Secrecy; WD Cir 193, 16 Jun 42, par. 4;
tation regarding troop movements, con- Ltr, Williamson to Western Mil Bur, 20 Jul 42, OCT
511.
tending that this should be done only 133
1st Ind, CofT for Army Regulating Off, El Paso,
when a military purpose could be Tex., 15 Apr 42, OCT 000.72 Gen; Memo, Traf
shown.134 Representatives of foreign gov- Contl Div for Mvmts Div OCT, 15 Feb 43, sub: Safe-
guarding Mil Info, OCT 370.5 Secrecy.
ernments were denied such information, 134
Ltr, Gross to Eastman, ODT, 26 Apr 42, OCT
except certain officers who were working 511.
135
with the Combined Staff Planners.135 The Combined Staff Planners was the commit-
tee primarily responsible for assisting the Combined
News agents, vendors of merchandise, Chiefs of Staff in planning the strategic conduct of the
and representatives of charitable organ- war. It consisted of three British officers, Army, Navy,
izations were not to be given advance in- and Air, and four U.S. officers, Army, Navy, Army
Air, and Navy Air.
formation regarding the arrival of special 136
WD Cir 191, 15 Jun 42, Sec. V; Ltr, Lasher to
troop trains or to be permitted to board MTS, 11 Jul 42, OCT 080 AAR; Ltr, Morris to West-
such trains, and this prohibition was ern Mil Bur, 1 1 Mar 44, OCT 531.7 Gen; WD Cir
314, 26 Jul 44, Sec. VI.
interpreted as applying to the American 137
1st Ind, CofT for PMG, 1 Nov 43, OCT 511
Red Cross despite the good work it was Rail and Motor Mvmts.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 57

tal rail lines. Consequently, commercial for oversea areas that might reveal the
teletypes and telephones were used exten- identity of the unit, its destination, or the
sively, necessitating the restriction on the ship on which it was to be transported
content of messages.138 were forbidden. Guards were provided for
equipment in transit whenever the unit
Although an Army regulation of Sep- commanders considered them necessary.140
tember 1942 appeared to favor the use of
mixed trains, the Chief of Transportation The close attention that the Chief of
did not. The inclusion of both passenger Transportation gave to the operation of
and freight cars in the same trains sub- troop trains and the importance that he
jected the passenger equipment to hard attached to the observance of schedules
treatment and necessitated more frequent and the maintenance of order and cleanli-
lay-ups for repairs. Mixed trains moved ness were based on sound military princi-
more slowly than passenger trains, a fact ples. The carriers sometimes felt that his
that meant a loss of service from the pas- insistence on the observance of schedules
senger cars. The decision on using mixed went beyond the point of military neces-
trains, however, was left largely to the sity, but unquestionably delays en route
commanders of troops, and in many in- magnified the problems of troop train ad-
stances they adhered to the old doctrine ministration, and late arrivals were dis-
that troops and their organic equipment turbing to the installations of destination.
should not be separated. The procedures There were some, including military men,
that were developed during World War II who believed that the Army's require-
for separate movements of troops and ments of secrecy in connection with train
their impedimenta and the fact that the movements were stricter than the circum-
country was in no danger of invasion after stances warranted, but the rules were
the early weeks of the war invalidated this dictated by consideration of the heavy
doctrine, yet the use of mixed trains con- cost that might result from less strict
tinued.139 security measures. Within the limits of
When impedimenta were moved sepa- practicality, the Chief of Transportation
rately from the troops to which they per- acted on the theory that a troop train was
tained, either in solid trains or in cars a military installation pro tern, and
attached to through freight trains, the ship- should be operated with corresponding
ments were given MI (military impedi- regard for schedules, discipline, sanita-
menta) numbers, were moved from origin tion, and security. Although the results
to destination with the least possible delay, often fell below his expectations, for rea-
and were controlled en route in the same sons that have been stated, these standards
manner as troop trains. Such shipments were achieved in large measure.
were exempt from the diversion orders of 138
an agent of the Interstate Commerce OCT HB Monograph 22, pp. 64-65.
139
AR 55-145, 30 Sep 42, par. 1b(2)(d); Interv with
Commission who had authority to reroute Morris, 24 May 43, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass;
transcontinental freight traffic when he Morris monograph, pp. 53-54.
140
found this necessary to keep the principal OCT HB Monograph 22, pp. 51-57, 63; Memo,
TAG for CG Field Forces, et al., 20 Jan 42, AG 370.5
railroad gateways free from congestion. (12-20-41), and Memo TAG for CG Field Forces, et
Markings on troop equipment destined al., 28 Jan 42, AG 370.5 (1-25-42).
58 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

Official and Furlough Travel to two arrangements, mentioned earlier,


on Regular Trains affecting the official travel of individuals
and small groups. At the request of the
While troops moving in special trains railroads, the Army had agreed that local
constituted the most important element Army transportation officers would con-
from a military standpoint, the other types sult local railroad representatives before
of Army passenger traffic added up to a routing parties of from fifteen to thirty-
considerable volume and involved certain nine, inclusive. This procedure enabled
unique problems. Chief among these the railroads not only to work out the
types were military personnel and civilian routing of this considerable traffic so as to
employees traveling on War Department use their equipment to best advantage but
transportation requests, either as small also to make an equitable division of the
groups or as individuals, and military per- business among the several rail lines.
sonnel traveling at their own expense Upon the recommendation of the Chief of
while on furlough, leave, or pass. This Transportation, local transportation of-
traffic was handled by regular train and ficers, in order to utilize railway cars as
bus services, which also handled the heavy they became available and thus reduce
traffic of civilians traveling on private deadheading, were authorized to advance
business missions or for pleasure. The or delay the departure of troops that they
mingling of military and civilian pas- had routed. These arrangements com-
sengers and the crowded conditions of the plemented each other and aided the
trains, buses, and terminals gave rise to Army transportation officers and the rail-
many of the passenger traffic problems roads in their joint effort to avoid idle car
with which General Gross and his Traffic time and wasted car space.
Control Division had to deal. Army personnel engaging accommoda-
As has been indicated, persons traveling tions in Pullman cars were not subject to
on War Department transportation re- the usual rules regarding the reservation
quests (official travel) were routed by the and surrender of space. For many years
Traffic Control Division when they num- Army regulations had provided that
bered forty or more, regardless of the transportation requests for Pullman space
point of origin, while local Army trans- would be surrendered after boarding the
portation officers routed smaller groups train, rather than exchanged for tickets
and individuals traveling from their re- before boarding as in the case of requests
spective stations. The problems involved for rail transportation. This arrangement
in the issuance of transportation requests was convenient for officers and enlisted
for such traffic and the fulfillment of men whose time of departure was subject
financial arrangements between the car- to sudden change, but it also meant that
riers and the government were numerous reservations could be held until train time
and sometimes vexatious. These adminis- 141
The administrative rules are covered in AR 55-
trative details are not dealt with in this 110, 22 Jan 43, sub: Trans Requests; AR 55-120, 26
discussion, which is confined to the strictly Apr 43, sub: Trans of Indiv; AR 55-125, 9 Jan 43,
transportation aspects.141 sub: Sleeping Car and Similar Accommodations; ARs
of the 35 series, 4810 through 4895. For a discussion
The necessity of utilizing railroad of administrative problems, see OCT HB Mono-
equipment with utmost economy gave rise graphs 6, pp. 232, 259-61; 20, pp. 6, 7, 30-57.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 59

and then not be used, and it permitted the members of the other armed services. The
holding of reservations on a number of Chief of Transportation rejected this pro-
trains simultaneously. In an effort to posal and the Army practice remained
check the waste of Pullman space, the unchanged. He pointed out that the Navy
Office of Defense Transportation early in placed only one man in a lower berth (up
the war requested the Army and other to July 1945), and that the Army's meth-
federal agencies to change their proce- od of using Pullman space actually was
dures to conform to the rules applicable to the more economical.144
the public at large.142
The Chief of Transportation did not Furlough travela term covering the
agree to the proposal since it would have travel of soldiers on furlough, leave, or
hampered officers in performing duties in- passcreated special problems because
volving travel, but in September 1942 he soldiers used the same facilities as civilians
entered into an agreement with the Pull- and because the peaks of furlough and
man Company that brought considerable civilian travelweek ends and major
improvement to the situation. Under this holiday periodstended to coincide. No
agreement Pullman space that had been actual count of furlough tickets was made,
reserved forty-eight hours or more in ad- but the railroads estimated that from 1
vance was held for military passengers January 1942 through 31 December 1945
until twenty-four hours before train time, approximately 200,000,000 reduced-rate
or it was held until train time if the reser- furlough tickets were sold to men and
vations had been made within forty- women of the armed services.145
eight hours of departure. To meet the Early efforts were made to hold fur-
problem encountered by officers whose lough travel within limits because of the
travel orders were changed just before de- strain under which the carriers were
parture, the Pullman Company permitted working. Furlough travel was in competi-
those who had already exchanged their tion with official military movements for
transportation requests for Pullman tickets transportation equipment, and over-
to use those tickets on other trains, and crowded trains were conducive to dis-
when the tickets could not be used at all, order. Against these practical reasons for
refund was made.143 limiting furlough travel, the Army had to
When a party of troops required only 142
part of a sleeping car, the Army practice Concerning loss of space due to commercial and
governmental practices, see Senate Special Commit-
was to use as many lower berths as were tee Investigating the National Defense Program, Third
required, placing two men in each lower Annual Report (Washington, March 4, 1944), pp. 116-
berth and using upper berths only if there 17.
143
Ltr, Pullman Co. to CofT, et al., 17 Jun 42; Ltr,
was an odd man in the party or after all ODT to Gross, 4 Jul 42; Ltr, Lasher to Pullman Co.,
lowers had been filled. The railroads com- 13 Jul 42; Ltr, Brig Gen Theodore H. Dillon, OCT, to
plained that this practice was inconsid- ODT, 17 Jul 42; Ltr, Pullman Co. to OCT, 29 Sep
42; all in OCT 531.2; AR 55-1 10, 22 Jan 43, sub:
erate of other passengers who might travel Trans Reqmts, par.4b;OCT HB Monograph 20, pp.
in the same car and proposed that the 32-35.
144
Army assign its personnel section by sec- AR 55-125, 9 Jan 43, par. 2c; Ltr, Lasher to
IMC, 8 Apr 43, OCT 531.2 (AR 55-125).
tion as the Navy did, thus leaving more 145
Ltr, Earl B. Padrick, Chm IMC, to author, 8
lower berths available for civilians or Dec 50, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass.
60 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

weigh both the popular argument that men for furloughs to start and end on Tuesday,
in training for oversea duty should be Wednesday, or Thursday. Commanders
afforded an opportunity to visit their were also directed to schedule furloughs
homes as often as the training schedule throughout the year and to avoid concen-
would permit and the morale value of trating them in certain months.149 The
such visits. Christmas-New Year holiday period at
In the fall of 1941 the prospect of heavy the end of 1942 threatened to produce un-
furlough travel during the Christmas holi- usually heavy travel, and explicit instruc-
day season caused anxiety to the railroads, tions covering furloughs granted between
The Quartermaster General, and G-4. 12 December and 12 January were issued
Not only had the size of the Army greatly limiting the number to 10 percent of the
increased since the preceding holiday sea- strength of the post, camp, or station;
son, but permission had been given to passes issued for shorter periods were also
commanding officers to authorize fur- restricted. Post commanders were in-
loughs up to 50 percent of their enlisted structed to co-operate with local railroad
personnel at any one time during this officials in deciding how much furlough
period, rather than the usual 15 percent.146 travel could be moved from their com-
The railroads proposed among other mands and when it could be most readily
things that holiday furloughs begin not handled.150 When information reached
later than 12 December; that the War De- the Chief of Transportation that some
partment establish schedules so as to commanders were not observing these in-
spread the traffic more evenly over the en- structions, he sent messages to all service
tire period; that the railroads be given ad- commands requesting that measures be
vance notice of the numbers scheduled to taken to enforce them. The Office of De-
move each day; and that official troop fense Transportation, which had been
movements be suspended between 12 De- deeply concerned over the prospective
cember and 14 January, except in case of congestion at this period, reported that
extreme emergency.147 The War Depart- 146
WD Cir 200, 25 Sep 41.
ment accepted these proposals in princi- 147
Memo, TQMG for ACofS G-4, 16 Oct 41, sub:
Christmas Furloughs; and subsequent correspondence
ple, but the Japanese attack on our Pacific
leading up to issuance of Memo, TAG for CGs All
bases and the ensuing declarations of war Armies, et al., 7 Nov 41; all in AG 220.71 (12-28-39)
against Japan and Germany necessitated AR 615-275; Memo, TAG for CGs All Armies, et al.,
a complete change of arrangements. Limi- 4 Nov 41, sub: Curtailment of Troop Mvmts, AG
370.5 (10-27-41); Memo, TAG for CofS GHQ, et al.,
tations on official troop movements could 5 Nov 41, sub: Induction of Men During Holidays,
not be observed. Furloughs were first lim- AG 324.71 (9-23-41); Memo, TAG for CGs Corps
ited to 25 percent of unit strength and Areas, et al., 10 Nov 41, sub: Curtailment of Repl Tng,
AG 324.71 (11-4-41).
then restricted to cases of emergency and 148
Memo, TAG for CofS GHQ et al., 8 Dec 41,
cases where the railroads could give as- sub: Furlough Travel; Memo, TAG for CGs All
surance to camp commanders that official Armies, et al., 24 Dec 41, sub: Curtailment of Leaves
and Furloughs; both in AG 220.7 1 (12-28-39) AR
troop movements would not be affected.148 615-275.
In April 1942, in order to lighten the 149
Memo, TAG for CG AGF, et al., 30 Apr 42,
pressure on the carriers over week ends, sub: Annual Leaves, Furloughs, and Vacations, AG
230.54 (4-24-42).
commanders of Army installations were 150
Memo, Gross for Somervell, 6 Oct 42, OCT HB
directed to arrange so far as practicable Gross Day File; WD Cir 348, 19 Oct 42, Sec. II.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 61

the measures taken by the Army with Complaints regarding the inadequacy
regard to furlough travel had enabled the of transportation available to men on fur-
carriers to handle the seasonal traffic lough and the crowded condition of trains
smoothly.151 and buses led to the introduction of a bill
While the holiday seasons presented the in the U.S. House of Representatives in
greatest difficulty, the Chief of Transpor- June 1944 to direct the Secretary of War
tation emphasized that excessive furlough and the Secretary of the Navy to give
travel was a year-round problem. In July priority to furlough traffic. The War De-
1943, speaking before a service com- partment opposed the bill on the ground
manders' conference, General Gross that furlough travel would be given pre-
argued against the tendency of post com- cedence over organized troop movements
manders to grant furloughs every time en- regardless of the urgency of the latter. In
listed men changed stations and expressed placing itself on record against this meas-
the view that a visit home about once ure the War Department expressed the
every six months would meet morale belief that arrangements recently made
needs. He also urged greater restraint in with the railroads for handling fur-
issuing passes to visit nearby places since loughees in special trains, together with
local rail and bus services were over- the reduction in furlough travel resulting
whelmed.152 from the reduction in the number of
Simultaneously the Traffic Control Di- soldiers remaining in the zone of interior,
vision proposed a revision of the basic would bring about an appreciable im-
Army regulations on furloughs, making provement in the transportation situation.
the number of furloughs and passes issued The proposed bill was not enacted into
at any post dependent at all times on the law.155
availability of commercial transportation The arrangement to move furloughees
equipment, and requiring post com- on special trains was an extension of a
manders to reduce their quotas of fur- plan that had been in effect earlier. Under
loughs and passes whenever transporta- Army regulations a large percentage of
tion considerations dictated. Army Service the troops shipped to oversea replace-
Forces headquarters approved the revision ment depots and ports of embarkation
as it related to passes but not with respect were entitled to furloughs before sailing
to furloughs, contending that furloughed 151
Army personnel should not be penalized Rads, 15 Dec 42, OCT 551.1 Furlough Fares;
Ltr, Eastman to Gross, 1 Jan 43, OCT HB Traf Contl
while there was no restriction on travel by Div Pass.
personnel of other governmental agencies 152
Remarks by Gen Gross at SvC Conf, Chicago,
or by the public at large. G-1 opposed 22-24 Jul 43, p. 113, JAGO Library.
153
Memo, OCT for CG ASF, 17 Jul 43, sub: Regu-
even the limitation on passes, because it lating Furloughs, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass;
affected Army personnel only and because Memo, Mil Pers Div ASF for CG ASF, 19 Aug 43;
of the difficulty of equitable enforcement. Memo, ACofS G-1 for CofS USA, 29 Sep 43, sub:
Travel on Pass; last two in AG 220.71 (12-28-39) AR
The entire proposal accordingly was 615-275; OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 117-18.
dropped.153 Special instructions regarding 154
WD Cir 215, 16 Sep 43, Sec. VI.
155
travel during the Christmas-New Year HR 5116, 78th Cong., 2d Sess., 23 Jun 44; Ltr,
SW to Rep Andrew J. May, Chm House Com on Mil
holiday season were issued in the fall of Affairs, 24 Aug 44, OCT 511 Priorities for Service-
1943, as in earlier years.154 men.
62 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

overseas, and the transportation lines often was less than the number for which
serving the training centers frequently cars had been ordered and from the fail-
were unable to accommodate this traffic. ure of all men to return to the gateways in
To relieve the situation, commanders of time to take the special cars that were to
158
training centers were instructed to provide carry them back to their stations.
the men with official transportation on The armed forces proposed in the sum-
special troop trains to their new stations, mer of 1944 that servicemen and service-
and to allow those who would benefit by women in uniform be allowed to pass
such an arrangement to leave the trains at through the gates at railway terminals or
convenient gateways and proceed to their board trains in advance of civilian travel-
homes at their own expense. When their ers. The primary purpose was to facilitate
furloughs were over, they returned to the the travel of furloughees who held coach
gateways and boarded special troop trains tickets; they had limited time for their
for the completion of their journeys. Under journeys and often were delayed in getting
this arrangement the furlough trip was aboard trains because of the volume of
shorter than it would have been if the nonessential civilian traffic. In response to
soldiers had purchased furlough tickets this proposal, the railroads stated that
from their stations to their homes and many of them already were following the
back again. Thus a considerable saving of practice at stations where there were facil-
transportation was effected and, in addi- ities for controlling traffic and where the
tion, the men were relieved of the neces- granting of preference was considered ex-
sity of making long journeys on crowded pedient, and they did not favor the adop-
regular trains. In the summer of 1944 this tion of the plan as a general rule.159
plan was extended so that whenever a car- It often happened that enlisted men
load of men traveling on furlough tickets who were entitled to a furlough before
from a training center or other installation going overseas were without funds with
could be routed through the same gate- which to purchase transportation. The
way, they were moved in a special car to Army Emergency Relief and the Red
the gateway, from which point they dis- Cross had found it necessary to limit loans
persed to their homes. The operation was to servicemen to cases of sickness or death
repeated in reverse when the men re-
156
turned to their stations.156 During the last AR 615-275, Changes 3, 20 May 43, and
Changes 5, 30 Sep 43; Memo, CofT for CG AGF, 3
half of 1944 about 216,000 troops on fur- Jul 44, OCT 511 Furlough Travel; WD CTB 25, 10
lough were moved as organized groups in Aug 44; OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 139-41.
157
special cars, and during 1945 about Data originally compiled by Transport Eco-
nomics Section, Traffic Control Division, OCT, to be
329,000 were so transported. 157 published in a statistical volume of this series, now in
This method of handling furlough preparation.
158
traffic, while it had definite advantages, Ltr, Siddall to CofT, 11 Aug 44; Ltr, Morris to
required very careful administration at Siddall, 19 Aug 44; both in OCT 511 Furlough
Travel; Memo, CofT for CG AGF, 29 Sep 44; Ltr,
the stations from which the troops were White to Siddall, 5 Jan 45; Memo, Gass for White, 10
moving, and gave rise to numerous com- Feb 45; last three in OCT 511 Furlough or Delay En
plaints from the railroads. The difficulties Route.
159
Ltr, Armed Forces to AAR and IMC, 11 Aug
arose from the fact that the number of fur- 44, and reply, 24 Aug 44, OCT 510 Trans of 15 or
loughees leaving their stations by rail Less.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 63

at home. The Army accordingly arranged order of application, and any space not
with the railroads and the bus lines for the taken up by these agencies within the time
issuance of official transportation requests set by the railroads was made available to
for round-trip furlough tickets in such in- the public.
stances, with the understanding that the Plans for the extension of this arrange-
cost of this transportation would be ment to other cities were worked out at
charged against the account of the en- meetings between representatives of the
listed man and would in no case be borne government agencies and the railroads in
by the government.160 the fall of 1942. Recommendations for the
establishment of additional GRB's usually
In addition to the other measures he originated with the Passenger Branch, but
took to improve travel conditions for mili- the decision as to their actual establish-
tary personnel using regular trains, the ment rested with a committee represent-
Chief of Transportation assisted in obtain- ing the major rail lines. The operation of
ing reservations for sleepers, parlor cars, each bureau was the responsibility of a
and reserved-seat coaches. The difficulty committee of local railroad representa-
that members of the armed forces experi- tives. The government agencies author-
enced in obtaining reserved space led first ized to use the GRB's were required to
to the establishment of government reser- designate a single office in each city
vation bureaus (GRB's) operated by the through which all requests for reservations
161
railroads, and later to the establishment of would be made. The offices that the
Army reservation bureaus (ARB's) to Army designated for this purpose became
complement these special railroad offices. known as Army reservations bureaus.162
Government reservation bureaus were The scope of this activity was steadily
the outgrowth of an arrangement between increased. Although it was part of the
the Passenger Branch in the Office of the original plan that reservations would be
Chief of Transportation and certain of the requested only for individuals on official
railroads that operated trains out of Wash- travel and not for groups, the rule was
ington, under which a limited amount of modified, against considerable railroad
space was held at the disposal of the opposition, to permit the ARB's to make
branch to meet its emergency needs. The reservations for groups up to fourteen.163
arrangement proved so helpful that the The railroads and the Office of Defense
Passenger Branch proposed that it be ex- Transportation also objected to the exten-
tended to other cities. The railroads were
agreeable, and the approval of the Office 160
of Defense Transportation was given with OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 145-46; WD Cir
22, 18 Jan 45, Sec. II.
the provision that the space held by the 161
OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 83-85; Memo,
railroads should be available to all of the Lasher to Wylie, 10 Nov 42, OCT 531.8 GRBs; WD
armed services and also to the War Pro- Cir 40, 4 Feb 43, Sec. I; Standard Operating Proce-
dure for GRBs issued by CofT, undated, OCT HB
duction Board and the Office of Price TZ Gen ARB.
Administration. Organized on this basis, 162
Memo, Lasher for CofT, 2 Aug 43, sub: GRB
the first GRB began functioning in Wash- Status Rpt, OCT 531.2 GRBs.
163
Ltr, Armed Forces to AAR and IMC, 11 Aug
ington late in June 1942. Space was sold 44, and replies, 24 Aug 44 and 11 Sep 44, OCT 510
to the several government agencies in the Trans of 15 or Less.
64 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

sion of the arrangement so that the reser- ness concerns bought up blocks of space on
vation bureaus could serve personnel important trains and never relinquished it
traveling on furlough and leave, but even- even though some of the accommodations
tually both accepted the Army's recom- might not be used.
mendation. The carriers also agreed to set Despite the competition for reserved
aside space in their larger terminals so space, the results obtained by the Army
that the Army reservation bureaus located reservation bureaus were substantial.
at Army installations in those cities could During the early months of operation the
operate branches in locations more readily percentage of requests that could not be
accessible to transient service personnel. filled was high, reaching a peak of 13.3
At the end of hostilities the Army had percent in August 1943, but rapid im-
forty-four reservation bureaus and they, provement followed. In several later
in turn, maintained a total of forty-eight months the percentage of failures was as
branches. General supervision of these low as 2.1. Activities of the ARB's from
offices was a responsibility of the Traffic their inception in April 1943 through 1945
Control Division. More detailed super- are summarized in Table 5.
vision was given by the zone transporta- The Chief of Transportation considered
tion officers, who also negotiated with the this traffic so important that in order to
railroads regarding increased allotments supplement the regular sleeper services he
of reserved space to the government reser- assigned to it a considerable number of
vation bureaus in their respective terri- the cars that had been allotted to handle
tories.164 organized troop movements. These cars
The chief problem in the operation of were placed on routes where the travel of
Army reservation bureaus was to get the military personnel on official business and
carriers to allocate sufficient space on on furlough was especially heavy, and
trains to the government reservation they were designated military sleeping
bureaus to meet the military need. The car lines. When the need became ap-
Chief of Transportation kept pressing for parent to the Traffic Control Division, the
larger allocations and some lines re- division requested the railroad concerned
sponded, but others evidently were reluc- and the Pullman Company to study the
tant to hold back large blocks of space situation and to arrange for the operation
from the general public.165 Although the of such a line. When on days of peak
Army emphasized that the reservation travel the traffic exceeded the capacity of
bureaus were operated solely as a con- regular sleeper services and the military
venience to military personnel and did not sleeping car line, the officer in charge of
imply any priority in favor of military
over civilian travelers, the fact remained 164
OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 77-82, 85-98;
that while space was under allocation to WD Memo W 55-40-43, 24 Aug 43; WD Cir 396, 7
the GRB's it was not available to the Oct 44, Sec. I; WD CTB 23, 8 May 45, includes a list
of ARB's and their branches and the rules governing
public. On the Army's side it could be their operation.
pointed out that civilians could and did 165
Ltr, Gross to Maj Gen Sanderford Jarman, 23
make reservations far in advance, whereas Jul 43, OCT 531.8 GRBs; Ltr, Morris to IMC, 17
Aug 44, OCT 531.2 SF; 1st Ind, 8th ZTO for CofT,
this frequently was not possible with mili- 1 Jan 45, and related correspondence, OCT 531.2
tary personnel, and that some large busi- New Orleans.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 65

TABLE 5ARMY RESERVATION BUREAU ACTIVITY: APRIL 1943-DECEMBER 1945

Source: Data based on Army Reservation Bureau Activity Report, received by Traffic Control Division, OCT, compiled for publication
in a statistical volume of this series, now in preparation.

an Army reservation bureau was author- committees representing all of the armed
ized to arrange with the carriers for the services.167
assignment of overflow sleeping cars. As soon as hostilities were over the car-
These also were to be taken from the mili- riers undertook to terminate the operation
tary allotment. Since the establishment of of both government reservation bureaus
military sleeping car lines meant that so and military sleeping car lines promptly.
much less equipment was available for or- In this they had the support of Mr. John-
ganized troop movements, the Traffic son, Director of Defense Transportation,
Control Division weighed very carefully who on 4 September 1945 informed the
the circumstances affecting each case. armed forces that overflow sleeping cars
While these lines were intended primarily would be discontinued at once, and that
for military personnel for whom reserva- the GRB's would be canceled on 15 Octo-
tions had been made by the ARB's, any ber "in order that sleeping cars may be
space not sold by the release time was made available for commercial use on a
made available to the public. In May parity with government travel." General
1945 there were seventy-six such lines in Gross and his colleagues in the other
operation.166 branches of the military establishment im-
Although the Army reservation bureaus mediately entered a protest against this
initially served only Army personnel, their action, pointing out that the military pop-
services eventually were made available ulation of the country would be large for
to personnel of the Navy, the Marine many months to come and that military
Corps, and the Coast Guard. The Navy personnel returning from overseas would
also set up a number of reservation bu- be in special need of these services. The
reaus that could be used by personnel of protest was successful. The government
all of the armed services. Toward the close reservation bureaus were continued, on a
of the war both the Army and the Navy diminishing scale, until August 1946.
reservation bureaus were advertised as While some military sleeping car lines
military reservation bureaus, but in most were discontinued, others were inaugu-
places the management continued to be
by the Army or by the Navy. Early in 166
OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 97-100; WD CTB
1945 the ARB's at San Francisco, Los 23, 8 May 45, p. 12.
167
Memo, CofT for 9th ZTO, 28 Oct 44, OCT
Angeles, and Seattle became joint bureaus 531.8 GRBs; Interv with Col Morris, 11 Oct 50, OCT
and were operated under the control of HB TZ Gen ARB.
66 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

SPECIAL RESERVATION BUREAU FOR MILITARY PERSONNEL in the


station concourse, New Orleans, Louisiana.

rated during the period of heavy demobi- Munitions Building. Complementing the
lization.168 activities of the Army reservation bureau
The number of officers passing through (formally set up in April 1943), the travel
Washington to domestic and oversea as- bureau rendered assistance in preparing
signments was large, and the Chief of mileage and expense vouchers, aided in
Transportation provided a complete travel filing applications for pay allotments and
service for their benefit. This service, insurance, gave advice on obtaining
established in November 1942, replaced
similar services set up by The Adjutant 168
Ltr, Gross to Johnson, 21 Aug 45; Ltr, Johnson
General and by other agencies of the War to Gross, 4 Sep 45; Ltr, Armed Forces to Johnson, 5
Department. Operated as a section of the Sep 45; Ltr, Johnson to Armed Forces, 10 Sep 45;
Passenger Branch, Traffic Control Divi- Memo, McIntyre for Gross, 12 Sep 45; Ltr, Johnson
to Gross, 20 Sep 45; all in OCT HB Gross ODT; Ltr,
sion, the travel bureau had its main office IMG to Johnson, 8 Jan 46, OCT 531.7 Sleeping Car
in the Pentagon and a branch in the Lines.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 67

financial assistance and making wills, The hotel reservation service performed
issued transportation requests upon pres- by the Chief of Transportation's travel bu-
entation of travel orders, prepared itin- reau was based on an arrangement made
eraries, provided information regarding with the American Hotel Association
conditions in foreign countries, processed early in 1943 under which members of the
applications for passports and visas, made Association agreed to reserve rooms,
reservations for air and rail travel, and ob- against letters of recommendation written
tained hotel accommodations in other by the travel bureau, either in their own
cities. Consolidated ticket offices main- hotels or in others of similar class. Travel-
tained by the rail, bus, and airlines were ers presented copies of these letters when
domiciled with the travel bureau. The claiming their accommodations. The suc-
bureau's services were available to both cess of the plan led to its extension to some
the civilian and the military personnel of of the Army reservation bureaus in the
the Army, and for group as well as indi- field. The travel bureau in Washington
vidual travel. After the war its activities and the ARB's made only out-of-town
were transferred to the Military District of reservations. Late in the war the service
Washington.169 commands set up bureaus in the princi-
Although the commanders of Army in- pal cities that made hotel reservations
stallations in the zone of interior were also only in their respective localities. Then it
instructed to establish travel information was arranged that when any of the Chief
booths to enable officers and enlisted men of Transportation's bureaus wanted to
to complete arrangements without having make reservations in cities in which there
to visit the crowded ticket offices of the were service command bureaus, they
carriers, the travel bureau established in would do so through the latter bureaus
Washington was unique both in size and rather than directly with the hotels.172
in scope. The nature and extent of its prin-
cipal activities are indicated in the follow- Discipline of military personnel travel-
ing summary of services performed during ing on regular trains became a problem as
the fiscal year ending 30 June 1945: 170 soon as the build-up of the armed forces
began in 1940. Train officials were reluc-
Services Number tant to exercise the same authority over
Military travel orders issued . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19,262 soldiers that they did over civilians, mili-
Civilian travel orders i s s u e d . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4,967
Transportation requests issued . . . . . . . . . . . . 116,640
tary authority was frequently lacking, and
Mileage vouchers prepared . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23,608 169
Pullman reservations made. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 164,251 OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 102-14; SOS
Air reservations m a d e . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44,654 Adm Memo 65, 9 Nov 42, sub: Discontinuance of
Hotel reservations made . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,533 Travel Assistance Functions; SOS Memo, 13 Nov 42,
sub: New Location of Travel Offices; WD Memo
Passports o b t a i n e d . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6,680
55-45, 22 Oct 45, sub: Estab of Oversea Travel
Visas o b t a i n e d . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8,363 Office, MDW; ASF Cir 128, 24 May 46, Sec. VI.
170
WD Cir 77, 17 Mar 43, Sec. IV; Annual Rpt,
The value of ticket sales for the fiscal year Traf Contl Div, FY 1945, p. 31, OCT HB Traf Contl
171
1945 were as follows: Div Rpts.
171
Ibid.
Railway. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $3,370,774 172 OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 114-114b; ASF
Airline............................. 853,884 Cir 77, 2 Mar 45, Sec. II; ASF Cir 174, 17 May 45,
Bus. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12,750 Sec. I.
68 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

young men temporarily relieved from the lar passenger trains whenever large num-
restraints of the military reservation were bers of military personnel were being
176
often guilty of rowdyism and irresponsible carried. In the beginning this arrange-
acts. Complaints made by passengers and ment was not wholly successful because
train officials indicated that the excessive many of the men assigned as military po-
use of liquor was a contributing factor in lice were inadequately trained and were
many cases. The railroads therefore in- not always assigned to the trains where
quired whether it was the desire of the they were most needed. In November
Army that they refuse to sell liquor to 1942 General Marshall, the Chief of Staff,
service personnel. The Adjutant General complained that the control of discipline
replied in the negative, stating that dis- on trains was not effective, and the Provost
crimination against service personnel on Marshal General then appointed thirty
public trains was undesirable and that en- inspectors to make investigations through-
listed men who were drunken or disorderly out the country and to coach military po-
were subject to trial and punishment by lice in the proper performance of their
173
court-martial under the Articles of War. duties.177
Although the commanding officers of The effectiveness of the military police
camps and other installations were di- increased steadily after these measures
rected to enforce the regulations strictly were taken. As the reports of difficulty be-
and to co-operate with railroad officials in came less frequent some of the service
dealing with disciplinary problems, the commands, in view of the growing scarcity
complaints against misconduct continued. of military police, began withdrawing
The carriers then proposed that the Army them from certain trains. In the summer
place its representatives on trains carrying 173
large numbers of furloughees to enforce Ltrs, IMC to TQMG and Other Armed Forces,
4 Mar 40, and 29 Jun 40; Ltr, IMG for TQMG, 31
discipline. The Army at first rejected this Jul 40; Ltr, TAG to IMC, 5 Aug 40; all in OCT 250.1
proposal, in part because of the lack of Misconduct of Mil Pers, Vol. I.
174
appropriations, but later accepted it when Memo, IMC for TQMG, et al., 26 Feb 41;
Memo, TAG to CGs Corps Areas, et al., 1 May 41,
the railroads offered free transportation sub: Conduct of Mil Pers on Trains; Ltr, IMC to
for such representatives. In September TAG, 12 May 41; Ltr, TAG to IMC, 10 Jun 41; Ltr,
1941 station commanders were author- IMC to TAG, 15 Jul 41; Memo, TAG to CGs Corps
Areas, et al., 26 Sep 41, sub: MP on Furlough Trains;
ized to designate military police to ride Ltr, TAG to IMC, 4 Nov 41; all in AG 250.1 (2-26-
such trains when the railroads requested 41)(1).
175
them to do so.174 Memo, TAG for CG AGF, et al., 12 Apr 42,
sub: Conduct of Mil Pers on Pub Carriers, AG 250.1
After the United States entered the war (3-25-42).
and travel by servicemen on regular trains 176
Memo, TAG for CG AGF, etc., 21 Jul 42, sub:
increased, further measures were required. Misconduct on Pub Carriers, AG 250.1 (7-14-42);
SOS Memo S 190-1-42, 24 Sep 42, sub: MPs Assigned
As a first step, post commanders were to Pub Carriers. Concerning general responsibility of
again directed to deal vigorously with service commands for conduct of military personnel,
cases of misbehavior on trains, but the see WD Cir 77, 17 Mar 43, Secs. I and III.
177
Memos, CofS for PMG, 4 and 17 Nov 42;
need for more effective control was soon Memo PMG for CofS, 23 Nov 42; Memo, PMG for
evident.175 The next step was to assign to CGs of SvCs, 1 Dec 42; all in PMG 250.1; WD Memo
the commanders of corps areas (later re- W 190-1-43, 5 Jan 43, sub: Size and Composition of
MP Details on Carriers; WD Memo, W 190-2-43, 13
designated service commands) full respon- Sep 43, sub: Assignment of MPs to Extra Sections;
sibility for placing military police on regu- ASF Cir 224, 18 Jul 44, Sec. III.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 69

of 1943 the railroads protested vigorously on. Railroad employees were requested to
against this action and the Chief of Trans- refuse to sell liquor to soldiers whose ac-
portation supported their position. As a tions indicated that an additional drink
result, ASF headquarters reminded the might result in disorderly conduct. The
service commands of their responsibilities serving of liquor in dining cars was to be
and directed them not to withdraw mili- stopped whenever such sale interfered
tary police from trains unless a careful with the expeditious serving of meals. At
survey showed their services were not the same time the extensive conversion of
178
needed. lounge and club cars into coaches already
In addition to quelling disturbances and had greatly reduced the opportunity for
performing other duties of a disciplinary soldiers to obtain liquor on the trains.182
nature, military police checked the papers The policy was therefore one of regulation
of each soldier to make sure that he was rather than of prohibition.
traveling with proper authority and that Transportation of members of the
he was on the right train. At the end of Women's Army Corps (WAC) and en-
July 1945, out of a total of 10,640 military listed men in separate cars was favored by
police engaged in the enforcement of dis- WAC headquarters. The Chief of Trans-
cipline in the United States, 3,401 were portation agreed that this should be done
policing railroad stations and trains. 179 when practicable but pointed out that
In the early months of the war the complete segregation could not be assured
Army's military policemen and the Navy's in view of the shortage of railway equip-
shore patrolmen devoted their attention ment. Segregation was easily accomplished
entirely to men of their respective services. when enough servicewomen to fill a car
Later, under an agreement made in 1942, were traveling, but when smaller groups
they were authorized to take corrective were involved they were often placed in
measures against servicemen of any of the the same cars with servicemen to avoid
armed services when their actions were wasting space. This procedure was in
reprehensible. Military police and mem- keeping with the commercial practice, and
bers of the shore patrol frequently served no unusual difficulties were experienced.
on joint missions.180 One disadvantage of Each group of Wacs had a leader with
the joint patrols, as the Provost Marshal disciplinary responsibilities, as did the
General pointed out, was that shore pa- enlisted men.183
trolmen were all petty officers while only
a small proportion of the military police 178
Memo, ASF Hq for CGs of SvGs, 2 Sep 43, OCT
held comparable grades.181 531.7 MP on Trains.
The matter of serving liquor to Army 179
PMGO monograph, Military Policy Division,
personnel on regular trains came up re- Provost Marshal General's Office, 1 Sep 45, p. 44,
OCMH; WD press release, 7 Nov 46.
currently. The railroads desired a definite 180
WD Cir 380, 24 Nov 42.
181
statement of policy from the Army, and 182
PMGO monograph, cited n. 179.
the Army apparently hesitated to take a Ltr, Wylie to Siddall, Western Mil Bur, 15 Sep
43, and preceding correspondence in OCT 531.7 Sale
positive stand. Eventually, in September of Liquor on Trains.
183
1943, the railroads were informed that re- Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 17 Dec 43; WD Cir
sponsibility for this matter had been 154, 18 Apr 44, Sec. III; Memo, CofT for CG 7th
SvC, 19 Jun 45; all in OCT 511 Mixed Groups of En-
assigned to the Chief of Transportation listed Men and Women; Interv with Morris, 26 Jun
and that certain steps had been decided 50, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass.
70 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

The problems that arose when military roads' regular services and equipment still
personnel used regular transportation serv- were required.
ices were different from those encountered Movements of patients fell into two
when they moved by special troop train, general categories. In the first category
and in some respects they were more diffi- were movements of patients being trans-
cult to handle. The sources of difficulty ferred to or between medical facilities in
were the mingling of civilians and soldiers, the zone of interior. Such movements
the overcrowding of trains and buses, and were regulated by The Surgeon General,
the lack of military control over the facili- who took into account the medical needs
ties and of command authority over the of the patients and bed vacancies in the
men. The Chief of Transportation did respective hospitals. In the second category
much to relieve the uncertainties and in- were movements from the water ports and
conveniences of travel by providing the aerial ports where patients were landed
reservation bureaus, the military sleeping after evacuation from the oversea theaters.
car lines, and through other measures. As These movements followed a prearranged
to discipline, such measures were taken as pattern. In general, they were governed
were considered feasible and the situation by bed credits that the ports held at so-
improved, but it never became wholly called debarkation hospitals located near
satisfactory. The need for military police the seaboard. Usually the patients re-
on all trains carrying substantial numbers mained at the debarkation hospitals only
of servicemen was clearly demonstrated. a few days pending determination of the
institutions to which they would be sent
Movement of Patients for further treatment or for convalescence.
While there was a certain amount of traffic
In moving patients, as in moving troops, involving patients stationed in the zone of
all suitable means of transportation were interior, the heavier movements resulted
usedthe railways, air transport, and from oversea evacuations, and the volume
184
motor ambulances. The employment of was therefore on an ascending scale
aircraft developed gradually and ambu- throughout the war, reaching its peak soon
lances were used chiefly for short hauls, so after the German surrender when evacu-
that the railways were the major factor. ation from the European theater was being
It was with the rail movements that the pressed.
Transportation Corps was primarily con- Close collaboration obviously was nec-
cerned. essary between The Surgeon General, who
In peacetime the small numbers of controlled the direction of the traffic and
patients that had to be moved by rail were supervised the medical services rendered
transported by regular train service using en route, and the Chief of Transportation,
sleepers, parlor cars, or coaches according who had over-all responsibility for provid-
to the condition of the patients and the ing the means of transportation. General
length of the journeys. During the war the 184
See Clarence McKittrick Smith, The Medical De-
Army found it advisable to build up a fleet partment: Hospitalization and Evacuation, Zone of Interior,
of specially constructed hospital cars to UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II
(Washington, 1956), Chs. XIX-XXIV, for a detailed
handle the rapidly growing traffic, partic- discussion of the handling of patients, including their
ularly the more serious cases, but the rail- transportation.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 71
TABLE 6OPERATIONS OF ARMY HOSPITAL CARS AND MEDICAL KITCHEN CARS: 1944-1946

Source: Records of Passenger Branch, Traffic Control Division, OCT; monthly data from these records will be published in a statistical
volume of this series, now in preparation.

co-ordination was provided by the Hospi- accommodations for thirty-six persons in


talization and Evacuation Branch of ASF three-tier berths. All cars had large side
headquarters, but that was not enough; doors to facilitate the handling of litter
direct collaboration was necessary on the patients. Some cars that were acquired
many details relating to the proper move- early in the war did not at first have
ment and adequate care of patients. This kitchen facilities, but later all were
was undertaken in the beginning through equipped with buffet kitchens. Air condi-
the assignment of a medical liaison officer tioning was not installed in some of the
to the Chief of Transportation, and later earlier acquisitions, but eventually it was
by the attachment of a medical regulating provided for the entire fleet. The Army
unit to the Chief of Transportation's Move- also built sixty medical kitchen cars,
ments Division. This unit dealt with the which were of simplified design similar to
movement of patients from the theaters the troop kitchen cars but especially
and their handling at the ports, as well as equipped for feeding patients. The medi-
with their subsequent transportation cal kitchen cars were needed principally
inland.185 for use in connection with moving patients
in regular sleeping cars and coaches, be-
Although the war found the Army cause such cars had no kitchen equipment.
without any definite plans for the develop- Summary data regarding the operation of
ment of a fleet of hospital cars, 320 such the hospital cars and medical kitchen cars
cars were acquired gradually for operation during 1944, 1945, and 1946 are given in
in the zone of interior.186 Of these, 120 Table 6.
were former Pullman sleepers and lounge
185
cars that had been converted to hospital The medical regulating unit will be discussed in
cars with thirty-two berths arranged in connection with evacuation by water. See below, p.
213.
two tiers. The remaining 200 had been 186
On the build-up of this fleet, see Wardlow, op.
designed and built as hospital cars with cit., pp. 385-89.
NEW SELF-CONTAINED ARMY HOSPITAL CAR. Three-tier berths accommodat-
ing thirty-six patients (above); the kitchen (below).
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 73

Since hospital cars served as both ambulant patients. Because The Surgeon
medical facilities and transportation facil- General desired that litter patients be
ities and were staffed and supplied by the moved in air-conditioned cars, the sleepers
Army, responsibility for their construction, assigned to this traffic were mostly of the
maintenance, and operation was divided standard type rather than tourist-class
among several Army agencies. These re- cars. The special Army troop sleepers were
sponsibilities were worked out after the not used for patients because of the lack of
188
United States entered the war, and for a air conditioning and other refinements.
time the division of authority was not en-
tirely clear. But by the time the movement In the early part of the war the Chief of
of patients became heavy, responsibilities Transportation had less control over the
had been clarified.187 The Surgeon Gen- routing of movements of patients and the
eral and the Chief of Transportation col- ordering of equipment from the railroads
laborated in establishing car designs that than he had over troop movements, but
would meet both medical and transporta- his control increased as the war progressed.
tion requirements. The Chief of Transpor- Under instructions issued by SOS head-
tation supervised the maintenance of the quarters in the summer of 1942, the service
cars as railroad equipmentsuch mainte- commands were authorized to deal directly
nance was provided by the railroads with the railroads regarding sleepers,
assigned them to the service commands in coaches, and dining cars for the transfer
accordance with the requirements of the of patients, as well as routings, when the
respective areas, made general arrange- movements were wholly within their terri-
ments with the carriers for the movement torial jurisdictions.189 This procedure con-
of the cars over their lines, and in certain tinued until June 1943, when it was
cases provided routings. The Surgeon changed to conform to the policy already
General supervised the maintenance of in effect for other trafficgroups of forty
the medical equipment and the staffing of or more would be moved under arrange-
the cars with medical personnel. The serv- ments made by the Chief of Transporta-
ice commands were directly responsible tion.190 In the spring of 1945 in anticipa-
for staffing, supplying, and cleaning the tion of heavy patient traffic at the end of
cars and for their assignment to load at the war in Europe and the consequent
ports of embarkation and hospitals in ac- desirability of consolidating movements as
cordance with the number of patients to much as possible in order to conserve rail
be moved from the respective installations. equipment, the Chief of Transportation
The Army policy was to move as many 187
patients as possible in hospital cars, since SOS Pamphlet, Military Hospitalization and
Evacuation of Patients, 15 Sep 42, in OCT HB Rail
they were more satisfactory from the Div Hosp Gars; WD Cir 316, 6 Dec 43.
standpoint of facilities than regular pas- 188
Morris monograph, p. 56; Memo, SG for CofT,
senger equipment and the latter was sorely 6 Dec 43; Memo, CofT for GAO, 1 Oct 45, par. 6;
last two in OCT 531.4 Hosp Train.
needed for civilian and troop traffic. It 189
Memo, CG SOS for CGs SvCs, 26 Aug 42, sub:
was necessary, nevertheless, to call on the Control of Hosp Trains, par. 4, OCT 531.4 Hosp
carriers for many sleepers for litter pa- Trains; SOS Pamphlet, Military Hospitalization and
Evacuation of Patients, cited n. 187.
tients and their attendants as well as for 190
AR 55-130, 28 Dec 42, par. 8b, and Changes 2, 4
parlor cars and coaches to accommodate Jun 43.
74 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS
requested authority to control all move- ing poor connections at junction points
ments involving fifteen or more patients and long delays for the patients, was
and attendants. This authority was strongly criticized.194 As in the case of
granted in June 1945. Smaller movements complaints regarding troop trains, the
were arranged for by local transportation Military Transportation Section trans-
officers through representatives of the rail- mitted the reported failures to the individ-
roads attached to their installations.191 ual rail lines and eventually relayed the
The Chief of Transportation also in- lines' explanations to the Chief of Trans-
creased his control over the utilization of portation.
Army hospital cars as the patient traffic Despite the effort to move patients in
became heavier. Because of his close con- groups of a carload or greater, it frequently
tacts with The Surgeon General and the was not possible to do so, and arrange-
railroads, as well as his control over rout- ments for the transportation of individuals
ings, he was able to avoid deadheading and small groups on regular trains were
and other uneconomical practices much necessary. Although such arrangements
more effectively than the service com- were made by the local transportation
mands. Consequently, early in 1944 the officers, the Chief of Transportation used
Chief of Transportation's Traffic Control his close relations with the railroads to
Division began to assign hospital cars to insure prompt handling. The principal
specific movements, request railroad problem was to obtain accommodations
equipment for integration into hospital without delay. Patients traveling on regu-
trains, establish schedules, and determine lar trains usually required room space,
what stopovers and diversions could be and such space generally was sold or
made en route. Similar supervision was reserved far in advance. Sometimes trav-
exercised over the employment of the elers who held space could be persuaded
medical kitchen cars. In December 1943, to relinquish it in favor of patients whose
with this increased control in prospect, the cases were urgent, but this was not always
Passenger Branch had established an true. The railroads were requested, and
evacuation unit to deal exclusively with they agreed, to have such situations re-
the movement of patients. This unit was ferred to their general passenger offices,
responsible for advance planning as well 191
as day-to-day operations.192 WD Cir 234, 12 Jun 44; Ltr, Morris to IMC, 2
Aug 44, and reply, 31 Aug 44, OCT 511; WD Cir
The evacuation unit kept each move- 405, 14 Oct 44; Ltr, IMC to CofT, 9 Feb 45; Memo,
ment of patients under observation and CofT for SG, 14 Feb 45, sub: Routing Hosp Train
complained to the railroads whenever Travel, par. 3; last two in OCT 531.4 Hosp Cars;
Memo, CofT for ACofS G-4, 16 May 45, OCT 511
their services did not appear satisfactory. (AR 55-130); WD Cir 177, 15 Jun 45, Sec. II.
It emphasized the importance of the 192
Rpt, Traf Contl Div, FY 1944, pp. 23-24, OCT
smooth handling of hospital trains and HB Traf Contl Div Rpts; ASF Cir 328, 30 Sep 44,
Sec. VIII.
cars and requested that buffer cars always 193
Ltr, Morris to MTS, 13 Nov 44; Ltr, AAR to
be placed between locomotives and cars Morris, 20 Nov 44, and atchd instruction to RRs; both
occupied by patients.193 The apparent in- in OCT 510 Patients.
194
See Memos, White to MTS, 21 Apr 45, OCT
clination of some lines to handle hospital 531.4 Hospital, and 9 Aug 45, OCT 511 Starke Gen
movements "at their leisure," with result- Hosp.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 75

which usually held some accommodations roads from the beginning of heavy move-
in reserve. Unfortunately, this procedure ments. One of the reasons was that there
did not fully meet the need. The next step were not sufficient dining cars for all such
was a more formal arrangement between trains. When large movements were
the Army and the railroads under which started from ports and general hospitals
Class I patientsthose requiring immedi- in hospital trains, dining carsor medical
ate transportationwere certified in writ- kitchen cars after they became available
ing by the responsible medical officers and were assigned, but frequently these trains
the carriers designated special officers to were broken up en route and the cars
deal with these cases.195 bearing patients were attached to a num-
In June 1944 the Office of Defense ber of regular trains for the onward jour-
Transportation, recognizing the difficul- ney. If the regular trains did not custom-
ties of the situation, requested the Inter- arily carry diners, the railroads were
state Commerce Commission (ICC) to confronted with two alternatives: they
direct the carriers to cancel reservations could attach special diners, which was dif-
and, if necessary, to require regular pas- ficult because of their scarcity, or they
sengers to vacate accommodations that could serve box meals, which The Surgeon
were needed for patients of the armed General did not consider satisfactory for
196
forces and the merchant marine. The patients.198
ICC service order that was issued in re- In trying to solve the problem, the
sponse to this request specifically named railroads requested the Chief of Transpor-
the railroad passenger agents and the tation to notify them at the time hospital
train conductors concerned with each case movements were routed of the specific
as its agents for enforcing the priority trains for which they would be expected
arrangement. The Chief of Transportation to provide dining cars. The Chief of Trans-
refused to recognize a narrow interpreta- portation did not feel that this was neces-
tion of this order and maintained that, sary and took the position that, when a
when the necessity of evicting regular pas- route had been established showing the
sengers was certified by an authorized initial, intermediate, and terminal carriers,
Army officer, all agents of the carriers, he had done all that he reasonably could
including the Military Transportation to forewarn the railroads, and that the
Section, were obligated to take any action responsibility for meeting dining car re-
within their competence to obtain the
197
desired accommodations. Both the 195
Chief of Transportation and the railroads WD Cir 234, 12 Jun 44; WD Cir 405, 14 Oct
44; OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 63-67.
agreed, however, that eviction should be 196
ODT, Civilian War Transport, p. 84; Ltr, ODT
resorted to only when other means of to CofT, 19 Jun 44, and reply, 20 Jun 44, OCT HB
accommodating patients had failed, and Traf Contl Div Pass; ICC Sv Order 213, effective 27
Jun 44; WD Cir 405, 14 Oct 44, par. 5,
in practice such evictions were rarely 197
Memo, Gass for Morris, 7 Oct 44, and reply, 10
necessary. Oct 44, OCT 510 Patients.
198
Memo, MTS for McIntyre, OCT, 7 Apr 44,
OCT 453.9 Hosp Cars; Memo, IMC for CofT, 18
Providing meals for patients traveling on Sep 44, and reply, 27 Sep 44, OCT 531.7 Train
regular trains was a problem for the rail- Service.
76 THE TRANSPORTATION CORP

quirements then rested with the carriers. ants. During the next four years the totals
It was the consideration of this problem, were as follows:202
as well as the preference for meals pre- Patients and
pared under medical supervision over Year Attendants
those served from regular dining cars, that 1943. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85,705
led to the inclusion of buffet kitchens in 1944. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165,121
the 200 new hospital cars built by the 1945. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 440,864
Army and the eventual installation of 1946. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50,767
buffet kitchens in the converted cars.199 The peak month was May 1945, when
concentrated efforts were being made to
Hospital cars and hospital trains were evacuate the sick and wounded from the
staffed by the service commands to which European theater, and in that month
they were assigned, and the instructions more than 58,000 patients and attendants
regarding the composition and responsibil- were routed by rail.
ities of the medical staffs were issued by The demand for cars to transport pa-
those commands, subject to the approval tients was heavy not only because of the
of The Surgeon General.200 A senior med- number of patients to be moved but also
ical officer, who had over-all responsibility because of the length of the journeys. The
for administration, messing, discipline, long trips resulted from the necessity of
sanitation, and care of patients, was in sending patients to distant hospitals for
charge of each hospital train. The grades specialized treatment and the policy of
and numbers of medical personnel on placing patients in hospitals as near their
hospital cars moving in regular train serv- homes as possible. Patients landed at west
ice depended on the type of patients and coast ports were likely to make especially
the length of the journey. Close co-ordina- long trips because the majority of the hos-
tion obviously was necessary between the pitals were in the east. In planning patient
service command personnel and the Medi- movements and the utilization of hospital
cal Corps and Transportation Corps offi- cars, The Surgeon General and the Chief
cers in Washington and at the ports who of Transportation naturally gave atten-
were concerned with the movement of tion to shortening the trips whenever pos-
patients. In anticipation of heavy evacu- 199
WD Cir 480, 22 Dec 44, Sec. I, gave compre-
ation from overseas, meetings of such offi- hensive instructions regarding subsistence on Army
cers were held on the east and west coasts hospital cars and trains.
200
See Ltr, Col Edgar S. Linthicum, 1st SvC, to Col
in 1945 to discuss problems and to review Harry D. Offutt, SGO, 22 Jul 43, and atchd SOP,
201
and refine the procedures. OCT 531.4 Hospital.
201
Data are available only for patients Hospital Train Conf, Miller Field, New York,
15-18 Feb 45; Hospital Train Unit Commanders
routed by the Office of the Chief of Trans- Conf, San Francisco, Calif., 10-13 July 45; both in
portation. Throughout the war individ- Hist Div SGO. During repatriation Navy patients
uals and small groups were routed locally, were transported in Army hospital cars in emergen-
cies, and railroad cars with Navy patients were at-
and during the early part of the war some tached to Army hospital trains. For procedures, see
larger groups were so routed. The first ASF Cir 441, 11 Dec 45, Sec. V.
202
recorded routings by the OCT were for Data from reports prepared by Transport Eco-
nomics Section, Traffic Control Division, OCT, com-
the month of December 1942, when the piled for publication in a statistical volume of this
groups totaled 375 patients and attend- series, now in preparation.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 77

sible and reducing deadhead mileage. the original plan of delegating a large
Incident to the study of the transportation measure of authority to the service com-
of patients from the ports to hospitals of mands for routing groups of patients and
definitive treatment during the latter part for utilizing hospital cars and regular rail-
of the war, the following data were com- road equipment proved unsatisfactory.
piled on the utilization of rail equipment The Chief of Transportation's authority in
in such movements:203 these matters was therefore considerably
Number of broadened as the traffic became heavier.
Round Trips Thus the experience with the movement
Average Miles Per Car of patients confirmed the position that the
Debarkation Port Per Trip PerMonth
Boston. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,175 3.4
Chief of Transportation had consistently
New Y o r k . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,058 4.0 taken with respect to troop movements
Hampton Roads. . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,105 3.6 that centralized control was necessary in
Charleston . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,145 3.5 order to obtain the most efficient utiliza-
Los Angeles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,320 1.7 tion of equipment and a proper distribu-
San F r a n c i s c o . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,409 1.7
Seattle. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,630 1.5
tion of traffic.

In reviewing the Army's experience Prisoners of War and Enemy Aliens


with the movement of patients by rail
during the war, two facts are noteworthy The transportation of more than 400,-
from the standpoint of the Chief of Trans- 000 prisoners of war (POW's), evacuated
portation. First, although such movements from the theaters to the zone of interior,
were accomplished without serious delay was an unwelcome responsibility added to
or inconvenience, the situation would those already resting on the Chief of
have been improved by earlier decision as Transportation and the railroads. This
to the number of hospital cars to be pro- traffic was difficult to handle not only be-
cured. The Pullman cars used when hos- cause of the over-all shortage of passenger
pital cars were not available were not as equipment, but because security require-
satisfactory as the hospital cars from the ments dictated that prisoners of war be
medical standpoint, and they had to be removed from the seaboard areas as
taken out of other services where they promptly as possible; ship arrivals could
were constantly needed. The last 100 hos- not be predicted precisely; advance infor-
pital cars were not ordered until January mation regarding the size and composi-
1945, and some of them had not yet en- tion of POW shipments was sometimes
tered service when the war ended. The inadequate or inaccurate; the railway cars
delay was occasioned chiefly by the diffi- used for handling this traffic had to be
culty of estimating the extent of battle specially prepared for the purpose; and
casualties and the incidence of disease in the internment camps were scattered
a war being waged in many widely scat- throughout the country. When large
tered areas and under a great variety of 203
History, Medical Liaison Office to OCT and
conditions. Uncertainty concerning the Medical Regulating Service SGO, section on hospital
evacuation policy on removal of patients trains, in OCT HB Mvmts Div Med Reg Sv, cited
hereafter as Hist Med Liaison Off. The period to
from the theaters to the zone of interior which the data apply is not stated, but the context
was another factor in the delay. Second, indicates the latter part of the war.
78 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

groups of prisoners of war arrived at U.S. be brought to the United States. In re-
ports, the railroads were hard put to meet sponse, General Gross was able to inform
the requirements for equipment in addi- the AAR that the Army already had in-
tion to the other demands regularly made structed the European theater to that
on them, and it was sometimes necessary effect. 207
to delay other military movements of low The restraint was only temporary, how-
priority in order to move prisoners of war ever, for in the spring of 1945 further
to internment camps without delay.204 large shipments of German prisoners were
Prisoners of war received in the United received. In the beginning the purpose of
States were mostly Germans and Italians removing prisoners of war from the thea-
captured in North Africa and in Europe. ters was to relieve the theater commanders
At the end of May 1945 there were 371,- of the burden of housing, feeding, and
000 Germans and 50,000 Italians in our guarding them, and this argument re-
internment camps, while at the end of the mained a strong one from the theater
hostilities in the Pacific there were only standpoint. As the war progressed, the
5,400 Japanese prisoners of war in the growing labor shortage in the United
United States.205 The burden, therefore, States and the success with which POW's
fell largely upon the eastern ports and the were being employed in industry and
eastern rail lines. In 1943, when the han- agriculture created another persuasive
dling of POW's from the Mediterranean argument for bringing captured Germans
was adversely affecting military move- to the zone of interior.
ments along the Atlantic seaboard, the From the time prisoners of war were
War Department considered the advis- placed aboard trains at the ports where
ability of setting up staging areas near the they landed they were in the custody of
ports for the temporary detention of new the Provost Marshal General. His office
arrivals, in order that the flow from the and that of the Chief of Transportation
ports to the internment camps might be kept in close touch regarding prospective
leveled off and the carriers relieved of the arrivals at the ports and subsequent trans-
necessity of assigning so much equipment fers. In matters affecting the inland trans-
to this traffic at one time. The inadvis- portation, internment, and employment
ability of holding prisoners in heavily of POW's, the Provost Marshal General's
populated seaboard areas argued against authority was largely delegated to the
the proposal, and sufficient success was service commands. When groups of forty
achieved in co-ordinating the water and or more were to be transferred from ports
the land movements to cause the project or internment camps, the service com-
to be dropped.206
The railroads still found this a difficult 204
Memo, Gass for Morris, 2 Sep 43, OCT 511 Rail
and undesirable traffic. In the fall of 1944, and Motor Mvrnts.
205
PMGO monograph, Prisoner of War Opera-
after wrestling with the problem for more tions, Feb 46, pp. 31-35, copy in OCMH. This mono-
than a year and with heavy additional graph covers many aspects of the subject that cannot
shipments from Europe in prospect, the be treated here.
206
Ltr, SW to SN, 27 Sep 43, OSW 453 (9-8-43)(l).
Association of American Railroads recom- 207
Ltr, Buford to Gross, 30 Oct 44, and reply, 1
mended that no further prisoners of war Nov 44, OCT HB Gross Rail.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 79

mands passed this information to the Division in the Office of the Chief of
Chief of Transportation, who arranged for Transportation. From the time when
the railroads to execute the movements. prisoners began arriving in the United
When smaller groups were transferred, States from North Africa until the bulk of
the transportation arrangements were the repatriation movement was accom-
made by the commanders of the ports or plished, the annual totals of POW's and
the internment camps from which the guards routed by the division were as
movements started. The service command follows:210
in which a movement originated was re- Year POW' s and Guards
sponsible for providing escorts, mess per- 1942 (December only) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,975
sonnel, and medical attendants, as well as 1 9 4 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 216,651
for furnishing the supplies required by the 1 9 4 4 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 487,270
prisoners en route.208 1945. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 546,052
1946 (Seven months) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 378,298
The utmost effort was made to move
prisoners of war in special trains and spe- Prisoners of war were transported in
cial cars, rather than in regular train serv- the lowest-class transportation available
ice where they might be brought in con- that is, coachesexcept in certain cases.
tact with the public. It frequently hap- Generals were furnished accommodations
pened that this was not possible because in sleepers or parlor cars upon request of
of the wide distribution of the internment the Provost Marshal General to the serv-
camps. At the end of August 1945 there ice command making the transfer. Prison-
were about 155 base camps and over 500 ers who were physically or mentally
branch camps for prisoners of war located disabled were moved in sleepers or hospi-
in forty-five states. The dispersion of tal cars. When it was more economical,
camps was necessary to serve the many because of the smallness of the group, to
areas in which POW labor was used. move prisoners of war in regular train
Transfers between camps were numerous service than to engage a special coach,
because of fluctuations in the demand for they were accommodated in enclosed
this type of labor, particularly the season- space (compartment, drawing room, and
al demand for agricultural workers. so forth) so that they could be more readi-
211
Under an agreement between the War ly guarded. When sleepers were re-
Department and the War Manpower quired in special POW trains, tourist-class
Commission, all requests for the assign- cars or troop sleepers were used; in regu-
ment of POW's to industrial or agricul-
tural employment were channeled through 208
For summary of responsibilities, see ASF Memo
the War Manpower Commission, which S 580-1-43, 13 Jul 43, sub: SOP for Transfer of POW;
had a broad view of the labor situation see also instructions from the Provost Marshal Gen-
throughout the nation.209 eral to the service commands regarding numerous
transfers in OCT 383.6 (1943).
As with other types of passenger traffic, 209
PMGO monograph, cited n. 205, pp. 59, 102.
data are not available for prisoner-of-war 210
Data from reports prepared by Transport Eco-
movements routed in the field but only for nomics Section, Traffic Control Division, OCT, com-
piled for a statistical volume of this series, now in
groups for which transportation arrange- preparation.
ments were made by the Traffic Control 211
WD Cir 471, 15 Dec 44; WD Cir 222, 23 Jul 45.
80 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

lar trains they might be standard, tourist, which U.S. soldiers making a long trip in
or troop sleepers. When a special car for coaches were reported to have passed a
prisoners of war was included in a regular sleeper in which prisoners of war were ac-
train, it was placed ahead of other cars so commodated, Army Service Forces head-
that there would be no contact between quarters issued instructions that thereafter
prisoners and other passengers. the transportation of prisoners of war
The coaches in which prisoners of war would be confined to day coaches, except
were transported were specially prepared in the case of litter patients, and that
for this service by the railroads in accord- motor transportation should be used to
ance with instructions issued by the War transport prisoners within service com-
Department.212 Such cars were to contain mands to permit consolidation of small
no partitions that would obstruct the view movements into carload shipments.216
of the guard in one vestibule to the guard
in the vestibule at the other end. The The Army arranged for some move-
doors of washrooms and other enclosures ments of enemy aliensthat is, citizens of
were to be removed, and windows were to enemy countries residing in the United
be blocked to prevent their being open States when the war beganbut they
more than eight inches.213 Cabinets con- were not extensive. The largest movement
taining fire-fighting equipment were to be of that nature was the evacuation of per-
covered. As further safeguards the officers sons of Japanese ancestry from strategic
arranging transfers were directed to notify areas on the Pacific coast, pursuant to
the railroads that the movements should Executive Order 9066, 19 February 1942.
be expedited in every way possible, and Approximately 110,000 Japanese and
the railroads were requested to notify the Japanese-Americans were moved in trains
train commanders in advance of any and bus convoys from exclusion areas to
known or probable stops. The Chief of nearby assembly centers, and thence to
Transportation consummated agreements relocation centers farther inland. The
with the carriers covering charges for the Chief of Transportation arranged with the
preparation and restoration of cars for the carriers for the initial movements, but this
transfer of POW's and charges for trans- function was soon taken over by the West-
portation and sleeping car accommoda- ern Defense Command, which had gen-
tions.214 Specially prepared cars were not eral charge of the relocation project.
required for the transfer of captured
Italians who had volunteered to join 212
WD Cir 420, 26 Oct 44.
213
Italian Service Units and hence had Windows of Pullman cars and Army hospital
215 cars transporting POW patients were not blocked
acquired a special status. unless the service commander specifically requested
Despite the effort made to consolidate it; see Ltr, Maj Darrell T. Lane, OCT, to Gass, 5 Feb
small movements of prisoners of war into 45, OCT 383.6 Special Preparation of Cars.
214
WD Memo 55-38-43, 21 Aug 43, sub: Trans of
carloads so as to avoid the use of enclosed POW; WD CTB 6, 27 Jun 44, par. 10.
spaces in regular cars, there was public 215
WD Cir 195, 18 May 44, Sec. VI.
216
criticism of any use of superior accommo- Memo, DCofS for SvCs ASF for PMG, CofT, et
al., 9 Jul 45, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass. Further
dations for such passengers. In July 1945, details regarding this incident are given in Ch. III,
following a much publicized incident in below.
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 81

Throughout the operation Lt. Col. Victor potential. There were few instances of
E. Maston of the Traffic Control Division light loading with wasted car space. The
was detailed by the Chief of Transporta- results, in brief, gave evidence of careful
tion to the Western Defense Command to planning and a close control over oper-
advise Lt. Gen. John L. De Witt on trans- ations.
portation matters.217 Credit for this achievement belongs to
both the carriers and the Army. The
The Chief of Transportation and the Association of American Railroads, estab-
railroads would have welcomed relief lished in 1934, had a much broader in-
from the necessity of moving prisoners of fluence over the distribution and utiliza-
war. The policy of evacuating such prison- tion of railway equipment than the
ers from the North African, Mediterra- corresponding organization in World War
nean, and European theaters was dictated I. The industry was therefore better inte-
by other considerations, however, and grated and more readily responsive to
transportation had to be provided even military needs. Although the railroads
though this increased the general strin- had fewer units of equipment than in the
gency in railroad equipment. After proce- previous war, those units were larger and
dures had been established and tested, capable of more work. The Army also had
POW movements were accomplished centralized control from the beginning
without difficulty beyond that incident to over the routing and movement of all but
the provision of the necessary railroad the smaller groups and so was in a posi-
equipment. There were only a few threats tion to plan its traffic carefully on a na-
of disturbance by prisoners being trans- tionwide basis and to spread the load. The
ported, and they were quickly quieted by hand-in-glove manner in which the Army
the guards. Transportation Corps and the Associa-
tion of American Railroads collaborated
A Job Well Done in both the planning and execution of
troop movements indicated that they re-
Although Army traffic on the common garded these movements as joint under-
carriers included several other types of takings.
passengers, the movement of troops was This does not imply that the Chief of
the basic responsibility. This responsibil- Transportation and his staff were always
ity was carried out far better in World satisfied with what the carriers did or the
War II than in World War I, despite the way in which they did it. These officers
fact that the military traffic was much believed that the railroads sometimes held
greater and the railroads had fewer units equipment in regular service when it
of passenger equipment. Heavy troop should have been made available for mili-
movements between training stations and tary movements. They protested because
to the seaboard were for the most part the Pullman Company failed to withdraw
handled in a prompt and orderly manner. 217
There was no serious congestion at the in- For full account of this evacuation, see General
DeWitt's final report to the Secretary of War, Japanese
land gateways or the ports of embarka- Evacuation from the West Coast, 1942 (Washington,
tion to tie up cars and waste their work 1943), pp. vii-x, 77-79, 356-62.
82 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

more sleepers from overnight commercial by other wartime demands, the only way
runs, with the result that many soldiers to relieve the pressure under which the
made long trips in coaches. They com- railroads were working and to assure the
plained because at times the carriers ap- armed forces that all troop movements
peared negligent in allowing troop trains would be executed as they desired was to
to fall behind schedule. They also believed further curtail the regular services. The
that the railroads should have given the Chief of Transportation believed that such
Army greater fare reductions and other curtailment should have been carried
concessions, in view of the volume of the further than it was, and he made his
military traffic. But despite these criti- opinion known to the Director of Defense
cisms, the Chief of Transportation and his Transportation, who had the requisite au-
associates recognized that in their over-all thority. A considerable percentage of the
performance the railroads gave the Army civilian travel was admittedly unneces-
excellent service, and they said so on sary. But the Director of Defense Trans-
numerous occasions. portation evidently believed that the
The reasons for the divergent views of military needs were being adequately
the Chief of Transportation and the rail- met, and it was not until the repatriation
roads were obvious and understandable. of troops from Europe was well under way
The Chief of Transportation had a single that he yielded to requests for further cuts
objectiveto move troops according to in the regular services. The additional
War Department plans. The railroads' problems that arose, after Japan had sur-
situation was not so simple. They recog- rendered and the repatriation of troops
nized their obligation to meet the require- from the Pacific had begun, involved the
ments of the armed forces, but they also line-haul capacity of the western railroads,
wanted to maintain their regular services as well as the amount of equipment
as fully as possible. Because of this fact, assigned to military service.
and also because of the limitation on the It is noteworthy that in addition to his
construction of new railroad equipment efforts to make effective arrangements for
and other operating difficulties that the the movement of troops, patients, prison-
carriers encountered during the war, it ers of war, and other passengers who
was inevitable that the service given the moved on War Department transporta-
Army should have fallen short of the Chief tion requests, the Chief of Transportation
of Transportation's expectations on some did much to ease the problems of military
occasions. As to fares, the lean years personnel who traveled as regular passen-
through which the railroads had passed gers while off duty. Such traffic was heavy,
just before World War II undoubtedly and the difficulties encountered in getting
strengthened their resistance to requests reservations and utilizing overcrowded
for larger concessions on wartime military trains had a direct bearing on soldier
traffic, and that was especially true of morale. The fact that the Chief of Trans-
those lines whose revenues were already portation was willing to have railroad
reduced by the land-grant deductions. equipment assigned to the so-called mili-
With increases in railroad equipment tary sleeping car lines, which were used
and operating personnel severely limited by men on furlough or leave as well as in-
ARMY PASSENGER TRAFFIC IN THE UNITED STATES 83

dividuals traveling on official business, turesnotably sleeping and messing


indicates the importance that the Army facilitiesthat were considered essential
attached to this traffic, for there never was in moving large numbers of troops over
a time when the equipment could not long distances. But for the transportation
have been used advantageously to accom- of individuals and small groups over the
plish organized troop movements. shorter distances, the motor carriers had
The motor carriers moved a relatively distinct advantages, and the Chief of
small percentage of the total military pas- Transportation saw to it that their services
senger traffic, but they performed an es- were used whenever they met the Army
sential service. Their capacity was limited requirements. The movement of troops by
when compared with that of the railroads, motorbus had the added virtue of reliev-
and they could not offer some of the fea- ing the hard-pressed railroads.
CHAPTER II

Troop Movements
to the Oversea Commands
Since all combat areas were overseas, to the ports of embarkation had not yet
efficiency in the execution of transoceanic been fully adapted to wartime require-
troop movements was of primary impor- ments. The procedures for handling troops
tance to the military authorities. From at the port staging areas still needed
that fact sprang the significance of the refinement. Progress toward the solution
problems involved in such movements, of these and related problems had only
and these problems were magnified by the begun when the Army installed a Chief of
proportions that the war assumed from Transportation as the head of the new
the outset, far exceeding anything con- transportation service in March 1942.
templated in prewar planning. Ocean transportation entered vitally
Lack of preparation for heavy troop into military planning from the inception
movements was evident from the day the of each undertaking since it was a per-
Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and sistent limiting factor. When President
plunged the United States into a two- Franklin D. Roosevelt and Prime Min-
ocean war. The Army ports of embarka- ister Winston S. Churchill were project-
tion on the west coast had neither the ing the broad lines of Allied strategy, they
facilities nor the personnel required for necessarily took into account the shipping
the prompt and orderly transshipment of resources that would likely be available.
the troops and supplies that had to be When the Combined Chiefs of Staff, the
rushed to our Pacific outposts. There were British-American military co-ordinating
not enough ships to meet all requirements agency, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the
and a satisfactory procedure had not yet corresponding agency for the United
been worked out for allocating the na- States, undertook to implement the stra-
tion's vessels to the uses for which the need tegic plans with arrangements for the de-
was most urgent. Adequate arrangements ployment of Allied military forces, the
had not yet been adopted by the Army availability of sufficient troop and cargo
and the Navy for the joint use of troop- vessels was a basic consideration. The
ships and joint troop-priority lists. Within Army's Chief of Transportation main-
the Army itself the procedures governing tained an active Planning Division,
the shipment of troops and their organ- headed during the greater part of the war
izational equipment from home stations by Col. Marcus B. Stokes, Jr., and con-
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 85

tributed heavily to the long-range esti- should reach the seaboard. They provided
mates of shipping capability upon which accommodations for troops during periods
such decisions turned.1 ranging from a few days to a few weeks,
A number of transportation agencies and during this interval gave both the
were involved in the actual movement of men and their personal equipment a
troops to the theaters, and co-ordination thorough processing to prepare them for
was therefore one of the Chief of Trans- service overseas. They stored, processed,
portation's major functions. The Army and repaired organizational equipment
operated few vessels of its own and most before dispatching it to the theaters. They
troopships were obtained from the U.S. were responsible for the prompt and
War Shipping Administration, the U.S. orderly embarkation of troops and for the
Navy, and the British Ministry of War proper equipping, staffing, and adminis-
Transport (BMWT). Troops were moved tration of troopships. The Chief of Trans-
from their home stations to the seaboard portation recognized that the success of
by commercial carriers. The transship- the entire troop movement program could
ment of the men and their impedimenta be disrupted by failure at the ports of em-
from the inland to the ocean carriers took barkation, and he therefore selected the
place at Army ports of embarkation, port commanders with care and kept their
which were military stations under the operations under close observation.
direct supervision of the Chief of Trans- While the Chief of Transportation was
portation. Each phase of a movement had concerned principally with the movement
to be co-ordinated with every other phase, of Army combat and service troops, other
and each movement had to be kept in types of passengers were accommodated
conformity with the general plan incor- on the troopships. Naval personnel were
porated in the movement order. The co- moved on vessels sailing under Army con-
ordinating responsibility rested ultimately trol, just as Army troops were moved on
with the Assistant Chief of Transportation the Navy's vessels. Numerous special mis-
for Operations, General Wylie, and his sions, which were nonmilitary in nature
deputy, Col. Richard D. Meyer. A large but usually embraced both military and
share of this responsibility was delegated civilian personnel, were transported to
to the Movements Division, which worked oversea areas. Employees of contractors
closely with the Operations Division of engaged in the construction of military
the General Staff, the appropriate ele- facilities overseas sailed on Army trans-
ments of ASF headquarters, the Traffic ports. Some military personnel of Allied
Control and Water Divisions in the Office 1
of the Chief of Transportation, and the Wardlow, The Transportation Corps: Responsibilities,
2 Organization, and Operations, pp. 18-22, discusses long-
ports of embarkation. range planning.
The ports of embarkation had a key 2
For more detailed description of the functions of
role, as the ensuing discussion will show. the Movements Division and its relations with other
offices, see OCT Pamphlet 1, Organizational Man-
Linking the inland and ocean carriers, ual; Memo, Farr for Ocean Traffic Br, Water Div, 1
they had to function with speed and pre- Aug 44, sub: Projected Troop Moves; Min of Junior
cision in order to avoid congestion, con- Officers' Meetings, 27 Sep 44, 4 and 11 Oct 44; and
Memo, C of Mvmts Div for C of Hist Unit OCT, 20
fusion, and delay. The port commanders Jun 45, sub: History of Mvmts Div; last five in OCT
specified the time when each movement HB Mvmts Div Gen.
86 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

nations were moved on these vessels, and personnel sent overseas to take their
representatives of various American and places. Finally, there were so-called tem-
Allied civilian agencies, including mem- porary-duty groups that were returned to
bers of the diplomatic corps, were trans- the United States for short periods and
ported under Army auspices. In 1944 the eventually sent back to their stations over-
Army began to send prisoners of war back seas. The last category included men
to their native lands, and soon after the traveling on leave or furlough obtained
fighting was over the Army transported for personal reasons and men sent back
dependents overseas to join military per- by their commanders for rest and recu-
sonnel stationed there. peration.
Of a total of 7,639,491 persons em- The troop units moved overseas ranged
barked by the Army from December 1941 in size from divisions downward, and the
through December 1945, 7,157,966 (93.7 problems encountered varied according
percent) were troops of the Army, 261,525 to the size, type, and maturity of the or-
were personnel of the U.S. Navy, and ganization, as well as to the completeness
220,000 were in other categories. Of the of its training and equipment. The move-
last figure, 93,301 were prisoners of war ment of a division, involving up to 14,000
shipped from the United States in 1944 men and great quantities of matriel, re-
3
and 1945. While the great bulk of this quired meticulous planning and detailed
traffic moved from U.S. ports, some pas- supervision throughout. The most spec-
sengers were embarked at Canadian ports. tacular achievement in moving large units
was the transfer of thirty-six divisions to
Categories of Troops Moved Europe between August 1944 and Febru-
ary 1945. Twenty-five were infantry divi-
The troops transported to the theaters sions, nine were armored divisions, and
fell into several categories, each of which two were airborne divisions. These organ-
involved peculiar transportation prob- izations, aggregating 458,416 officers and
lems. First, there were troops moving as men, were embarked at the New York
units (prescribed military organizations) and Boston Ports of Embarkation in 126
or detachments therefrom. Second, there troopships, using most but not all of the
were replacements, or individual soldiers, space. Their organic equipment and ini-
needed by the theater commanders to re- tial supplies totaled more than 1,500,000
place men lost from units because of measurement tons and required the major
battle casualties, sickness, accidents, or part of the capacity of 260 large cargo
transfers. Third, there were fillers required vessels.4 The last two divisions, dispatched
by the theater commanders to complete 3
the personnel of units that had been Figures for the period December 1941 through
December 1944 are from ASF Statistical Review, World
understrength when they were dispatched War II (Washington, 1946), pp. 121-22; figures for
from the zone of interior. Fourth, there 1945 are from reports by the ports of embarkation to
was rotational personnel, or soldiers trav- Movements Division, OCT, all reworked for statis-
tical volume of this series, now in preparation.
eling pursuant to the Army's policy that 4
Summary, DivisionsETO, prepared by Maj
men who had seen lengthy service Welman H. Ouderkirk, Mvmts Div OCT, 30 Jun 45,
abroadespecially those who had served in binder, European Divisions, OCT HB Mvmts Div
Gen. See also Rad, SHAEF London to WD, 9 Aug
in isolated or unhealthy areasshould be 44, S 57189, and Rad, Marshall to Eisenhower, 11
returned to the zone of interior and other Aug 44, WAR 79344.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 87

in February 1945, had been earmarked for centthey were nevertheless a matter of
the Pacific, but when plans were changed concern to the Chief of Transportation.
they were rushed across the United States The more such passengers he had to ac-
by rail and embarked at New York on fast commodate on transports, the less space
ships to bolster General of the Army he had for units, replacements, and fillers.
Dwight D. Eisenhower's forces in the final Early in the war General Gross urged that
5
drive against Germany. the rotational policy be kept within limits
During the early part of 1943, replace- because of the tight shipping situation,
ments and fillers constituted about 20 per- and he continued to urge this point of
8
cent of the total outbound troop move- view. Late in 1943 the War Department
ment, but beginning in the fall of that presented to the Joint Chiefs of Staff a
year the percentage showed a marked in- proposal for the conversion of twenty-four
crease.6 The number of replacements sent cargo vessels, in addition to those already
to Europe during the heavy fighting that being converted to troopships, to provide
followed the invasion of the Continent space for rotational traffic. This proposal
raised this traffic to a new high level in was predicated on a policy of returning
July 1944. That level was exceeded, how- 1 percent of the total troop strength each
ever, during the following winter. Decem- month from the South Pacific, the South-
ber 1944 found General Eisenhower's west Pacific, and the China-Burma-India
combat divisions badly depleted, and the theaters. The JCS requested the Maritime
German counteroffensive in the Ardennes Commission to convert sufficient vessels to
9
brought the situation to a crisis. Expedited provide 34,000 additional troop spaces.
movements were arranged from replace- These vessels after conversion were ab-
ment training centers and replacement sorbed in the Army troopship pool; they
depots to the ports; the troops were em- were not operated exclusively for rota-
barked without delay and upon arrival at tional troop traffic since that would have
French ports were entrained immediately involved a waste of ship space. The rota-
for the advanced areas. In January 1945, tional policy was also applied to other
replacements and fillers constituted more
5
than 40 percent of the total troop move- Biennial Report of the Chief of Staff of the United
ment to the theaters. In March, when the States Army, July 1, 1943 to June 30,1945 (Washington,
1 September 1945), p. 106.
movement of units to the European Thea- 6
ASF MPR, Jul 44, Sec. 3, p. 30.
ter of Operations, U.S. Army (ETOUSA), 7
For a discussion of the replacement crisis in the
had been virtually stopped, replacements ETO, see Report of Activities, Army Ground Forces,
10 Jan 46, pp. 10, 11. Concerning the AGF's problem
and fillers made up over 60 percent of the in providing replacements, see Kent Roberts Green-
total. The effect of the impending German field, Robert R. Palmer, and Bell I. Wiley, The Or-
collapse on the proportion of troops ganization of Ground Combat Troops, UNITED
STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II (Washing-
shipped as units, fillers, and replacements, ton, 1947) pp. 246-51, and Maj William R. Keast,
as well as the effect of the realignment of Provision of Enlisted Replacements, Study 7, Histor-
forces after the German surrender, is re- ical8 Section AGF, 1946, pp. 16-19, 28-36.
Memo, Gross for C of Pers Div SOS, 22 Mar 42,
flected in Table 7.7 sub: Regular Relief of Pers at Oversea Sta, OCT HB
Although rotational personnel and Wylie Staybacks; Memo, Gross for Somervell, 22 Jun
temporary-duty groups never constituted 44, ASF Hq Shipping 1944.
9
JCS 595, 2 Dec 43, and subsequent reports and
a large percentage of the total outbound correspondence; Ltr, JCS to Mar Com, 22 Mar 44; all
movementusually well under 10 per- in OPD ABC 322 (2 Dec 42).
88 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

TABLE 7CLASSIFICATION OF TROOPS EMBARKED AT U.S. PORTS OF EMBARKATION FOR


OVERSEA COMMANDS: MAY 1944-DECEMBER 1945

Source: Data based on reports from ports of embarkation to Movements Division, OCT, compiled for publication in statistical volume
of this series, now in preparation. A breakdown for earlier months is not available.

theaters. Initially the number of men re- erly fed and clothed and adequately pro-
turned to the zone of interior had depend- vided with ammunition and other
ed on the requests of theater commanders expendable military items. Early in the
and the availability of transportation to war it was recognized that the maximum
move replacements, but later the War force that could be sent to a particular
Department established monthly quotas.10 theater was the force the War Depart-
The problem of moving personnel to ment could confidently expect to main-
oversea areas was always accompanied by tain there.11 This doctrine, which was the
the problem of moving equipment and 10
supplies. Troop units had to have their Unnumbered WD Cir, 28 Jun 43, sub: Rotation
and Return of Mil Pers as Individuals; Rad, OPD to
organizational equipment and initial sup- SWPA and SOPAC, 12 Nov 43, CM-OUT 5527,
plies when they arrived in the theater or paraphrase in OCT 000-370.5 POA; WD Cir 58, 9
they were virtually useless. Thereafter a Feb 44; WD Cir 8, 6 Jan 45.
11
Memo, Gross for Somervell, 21 Dec 41, sub:
steady flow of maintenance supplies was Estimate of Shipping Available, p. 4, OCT HB Gross
necessary so that the men would be prop- Day File.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 89

TABLE 8PERCENTAGE OF TROOPS EMBARKED FROM U.S. PORTS IN VESSELS UNDER


BRITISH AND U.S. CONTROL: MAY 1944-DECEMBER 1945

Source: Movements Division, OCT, Outbound Classification Summary, Pt. A, reworked for publication in a statistical volume for this
series, now in preparation. Data for earlier period not available.

opposite of that followed in sending the variety of problems for the Transportation
American Expeditionary Forces to France Corps because of their less adequate or-
in 1917-18, developed logically from the ganization and leadership.13
fact that troops in most oversea areas
would have to be equipped and supplied Troopships and Sailing Schedules
entirely or almost entirely from the zone
of interior and that shipping would be a The ships used in transporting Army
limiting factor. A corollary of this doc- personnel to the theaters were obtained
trine was the necessity of maintaining a from various sources and were operated
balance between troopship capacity and by various agencies. Broadly speaking,
cargo-ship capacitya matter that re- they were under either American or Brit-
quired the constant attention of the Chief ish control. The British group, which in-
of Transportation.12 cluded many vessels under the registry of
other friendly nations, was integrated into
The larger units naturally presented a one fleet under the operational control of
greater challenge from the standpoint of the British Ministry of War Transport.
providing adequate facilities for their The operating arrangements relating to
movement, of maintaining the integrity of the vessels of the American group, which
the organizations en route, and of deliv- also included some of foreign registry,
ering the troops and their equipment cannot be so simply stated. Table 8 shows
overseas at the times and places that would the several types of operating arrange-
permit them to be brought together with- ments and the percentage of troops em-
out great delay. From the standpoint of
administration and control, however, the 12
Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 161-62.
13
smaller units and detachments and the These problems will be discussed later in this
chapter in the sections, Troop Staging at the Ports,
replacements and other individuals travel- Embarkation Procedures, and Troop Ship Adminis-
ing in temporary groups posed a greater tration.
90 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

barked at U.S. ports on vessels of each by the Navy on Army schedules. These
category during the latter part of the war. were vessels of about 17,800 gross tons and
The vessels on which American troops 19 knots speed, with accommodations for
were moved to the theaters were of many well over 5,000 troops. Thirty of the Mari-
types, for the extreme need of troop lift time Commission's largest standard cargo
necessitated the use of all available pas- type (C-4) were converted to troop car-
senger ships and many freighters. An im- riers and operated by the Navy on Army
portant element of the troopship fleet schedules. These vessels, also named after
consisted of the prewar passenger liners generals, were of about 13,000 gross tons
that had been requisitioned and converted and 17 knots speed and had troop capac-
to increase their capacities. Notable ities ranging from about 3,000 to 4,000.
among these vessels were the British liners Cargo vessels of the other standard types
Aquitania, Britannic, Empress of Scotland, (C-1, C-2, and C-3) were converted to
Mauretania, Queen Elizabeth, and Queen troopships and operated by agents of the
Mary; the French liners Ile de France and War Shipping Administration, mostly on
Pasteur; the Dutch liner Nieuw Amsterdam; Army schedules. Notable among such
and the American ships Argentina, Brazil, troopships were the "Marine" series
Edmund B. Alexander, George Washington, (C-4's), the "Sea" series (C-3's), and the
Hermitage, Matsonia, Monterey, Monticello, "Cape" series (C-1's). The principal war-
Mount Vernon, President Coolidge, Uruguay, time cargo design, the Liberty ship, also
Wakefield, and West Point. Two of the was used as a troop carrier to meet emer-
American vessels, the Army transports gency requirements.15
Edmund B. Alexander and George Washington, While all luxuries and many comforts
were built before World War I and car- had to be omitted from vessels in wartime
ried many U.S. troops to Europe in 1917- service in order to obtain the maximum
18, but they also served well in World War troop capacity, the only type that gave
II after extensive reconditioning. All of rise to serious criticism was the converted
the above foreign-flag vessels and some of Liberty. This was an emergency cargo
those of American registry had sufficient type of 11 knots speed. It was designed for
speed to enable them to proceed inde- quick construction and the shipyards
pendently of convoys. The troop capac- made deliveries rapidly. Accordingly,
ities ranged from about 2,000 to 15,000 when it became necessary to move large
the latter number being the capacity of numbers of prisoners of war from North
the "Queens" in favorable weather.14 Africa to the United States in the spring
Only a limited number of ships de- of 1943, the Army decided to install tem-
signed expressly as passenger carriers was porary facilities in about 250 Liberty ships
built during the war because of the length and to use them for this purpose. Some
of time required for construction; instead, were equipped to accommodate 300 pris-
a policy of converting the more quickly oners of war, and others 500. Late in the
constructed cargo types to troopships was 14
For a description of the ships and an account of
followed. Nineteen vessels of the U.S. their service, see Roland W. Charles, Troopships of
Maritime Commission's wartime passen- World War II (Washington, 1947). On a few trips the
Queens carried more than 15,000 troops.
ger design (P-2) were completed, named 15
On cargo ship conversions, see Wardlow, op. cit.,
after generals and admirals, and operated pp. 300-301.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 91

summer the need for additional troop lift quantities of explosives were no longer
to the Mediterranean became acute, and placed in ships carrying troops, and the
OPD authorized the use of these vessels loading of small quantities was subject to
to meet the situation with the understand- the approval of the Operations Division
ing that the accommodations would be of the War Department General Staff.21
improved.16 This action was subsequently The vessels converted to combat load-
brought before the Combined Chiefs of ersattack transports (APA's)for oper-
Staff and approved by that agency as an ation by the Navy had troop occommoda-
emergency measure.17 tions that, when utilized on voyages from
Many cargo ships normally had accom- U.S. ports to the theaters, added appre-
modations for a limited number of pas- ciably to the outbound troop lift. In order
sengers and these were used whenever to utilize these accommodations to best
possible.18 In the spring of 1942 British advantage, the Army proposed late in
and American military representatives 1942 that combat loaders thereafter be
discussed this subject, and the Joint Mili- assigned to particular operations by the
tary Transportation Committee initiated JCS, rather than by the Navy, so that the
a proposal to install accommodations for Army would be informed regarding their
fifty or more passengers on a large num- 22
movements. In accepting this proposal,
ber of the cargo vessels then being built, the Navy stated that it had always ob-
including Liberty ships. Execution of the tained the concurrence of the Army before
proposal was delayed, however, because deciding upon the operation of combat
of the failure of the War Shipping Admin- loaders and pointed out that such vessels
istration, the Army, and the Navy to 16
The problems that resulted from this makeshift
agree on plans and the WSA's insistence arrangement are discussed below, pp. 145-48,
on having Presidential authority before 17
CCS 121st Mtg, 1 Oct 43. For further documen-
undertaking such installations. The proj- tation, see notes 179 and 180 below.
18
Memo, CofT for CGs of PEs, 10 Jun 42, sub:
ect was dropped in the summer of 1943, Maximum Utilization of Pass Space; Memo, CofT
for by that time the program of convert- for CofS USA, 4 Sep 42, sub: Transport of Troops on
ing standard cargo vessels to troop carriers Cargo Vessels; both in OCT 541.1 Small Groups.
19
Ltr, Wylie to WSA, 30 Mar 42, OCT HB Wylie
and of installing temporary passenger ac- Staybacks; JMTC 8th Mtg, 23 Apr 42, and occasional
commodations on Liberty ships had de- mtgs through 34th Mtg, 25 Mar 43; Memo, Wylie for
prived the earlier proposal of its impor- CofT, 18 May 42; Memo, Gross for Somervell, 2 Sep
42; Memo, CofT for CofS USA, 4 Sep 42, sub: Con-
tance.19 Nevertheless, all available version of WSA Cargo Ships to Carry 50 Troops or
passenger space on freighters of both the More; last three in OCT HB Gross Troops on Cargo
British and the American pools was used Ships.
20
when required, and such space was par- Memo, CofT for ACofS OPD, 30 Jan 45, OCT
HB Farr Staybacks; Memo, Maj Ouderkirk for Capt
ticularly valuable in moving reinforce- Robert L. Zellman, 11 Apr 45, par. 6, bound in
ments to the European theater during the Mvmts Div Hist, Mar 1945, OCT HB Mvmts Div
critical winter of 1944-45.20 Gen.
21
Memo, Farr for Gross, 27 Apr 44, OCT HB Farr
The transportation of troops on freight- Staybacks; Memo, Gross for Somervell, 15 May 44,
ers brought up the question of moving ASF Hq Trans 1944; Memo, CofT for OPD, 31 May
personnel and explosives on the same ves- 44, sub: Pass Shipts on Cargo Vessels, OCT 370.5.
22
Memo, CG SOS for CofS USA, 26 Nov 42,
sel. After a heavy loss of life in the sinking OPD 370 (3-6-42) Army Transports; JCS 158/2, 14
of a Liberty ship carrying both, large Dec 42; JCS 46th Mtg, 15 Dec 42, Item 2.
THREE TYPES OF TROOP TRANSPORTS. The James Parker, a converted
prewar passenger liner (top); the Maritime Commission's P-2 type, designed and built as a
troopship (middle); a naval transport, combat loaded for the assault on Sicily (bottom).
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 93

were required by the Navy for amphibious Staff when only the U.S. armed forces
training as well as for actual assault oper- were concerned. The deployment of ship-
ations. In September 1943 the Chief of ping to implement these strategic decisions
Transportation, acting on a report that a was planned and supervised by the Com-
combat loader had sailed from San Diego bined Military Transportation Committee
with naval personnel of low priority, in- on the international level and by the Joint
structed the Army port commanders to Military Transportation Committee on
make sure that the agreed arrangement the American level. The allocation and
was fully carried out at the ports under reallocation of specific ships, however,
23
their respective jurisdictions. The Army were normally matters for direct dealing
also sought to have any passenger space between the Office of the Chief of Trans-
that might be available on aircraft car- portation on the one hand and the Naval
riers, LST's (landing ships, tank), or other Transportation Service, or the War Ship-
combatant vessels sailing from the United ping Administration, or the British Min-
States utilized for personnel on the joint istry of War Transport on the other.
troop-priority list. Negotiations with the British usually re-
With the variety of types of ships used sulted in quick understanding regarding
in moving troops it would be interesting the employment of troopships, and the
to know what percentage of the total rate attained in moving American soldiers
movement traveled on vessels of various to the European theater was possible only
capacities. Unfortunately such an analysis because of the use of the large British
is available only for the month of Decem- liners.25 The troopships operated by
ber 1943, but that was a period of heavy agents of the War Shipping Administra-
outbound traffic and the data are there- tion were committed to military service
fore significant. The total of over 273,000 and hence were deployed in accordance
passengers (mostly troops) embarked on with decisions of the military authorities.
312 vessels was distributed as follows:24 The task of allocating and reallocating
American troopships therefore rested
Percentage
largely with the Army and the Navy, and
Number of of Total
Size of Shipment Ships Used Passengers
they sometimes found it difficult to agree.
Total. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 312 100.0 The basic cause of disagreement
stemmed from the fact that the Navy's
Up to 199. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 178 2.1 chief interest was in the Pacific, whereas
2 0 0 - 9 9 9 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64 10.3 the Army's principal effort was in the
1,000-1,999. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 13.2
2,000-4,999. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 37.9
Mediterranean and European theaters.
5,000 and over. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 36.5 Under the Allies' plan of strategy the
Mediterranean Theater of Operations
The allocation of troopships to serve (MTO) and the European Theater of Op-
particular oversea areas depended on 23
Min of Port Comdrs Conf, Boston, 30 Aug-1 Sep
strategic decisions arrived at by the Presi- 43, pp. 113-14, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf.
24
dent and the Prime Minister at their oc- Memo, Finlay for Gross, 21 Feb 44, OCT HB
casional conferences, by the Combined Gross Troops on Cargo Ships.
25
Agreement concerning the use of British ships be-
Chiefs of Staff when inter-Allied relations came more difficult after V-E Day. On the general
were involved, and by the Joint Chiefs of subject, see Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 220-27.
94 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

erations (ETO) were to have priority over scheduled by the Movements Division in
the Pacific areas until Germany had been the Office of the Chief of Transportation,
defeated. The disagreements, which were subject to arrangements with the Convoy
particularly acute with respect to the em- and Routing Section of the Navy Depart-
ployment of the large, fast troopships op- ment and the policies of the British Min-
erated under charter by the Navy, came istry of War Transport regarding vessels
to a head in the late summer of 1943, under its control. A different method was
when the Army protested vigorously used in scheduling sailings from Pacific
against the unilateral action of the Navy coast ports. There were a number of
in transferring certain of these vessels to reasons for thisthe large requirements
26
the Pacific. About this time it became of the Navy for troop lift, the length of the
necessary to decide upon the allocation of transpacific voyages, the frequent deten-
the new troop carriers then being con- tion of vessels overseas for intratheater
structed by the Maritime Commission. As operation, the unusual delays at home
a result, the Joint Military Transporta- ports on account of repairs, the fact that
tion Committee appointed a troopship most vessels sailed independently rather
subcommittee consisting of representa- than in convoy, and the distance of Pacific
tives of the Office of the Chief of Trans- coast ports from headquarters in Wash-
portation, the Naval Transportation ington. Because of these circumstances the
Service, and the War Shipping Adminis- troopships in the Pacific were considered
tration to assign transports by name to the a pool for the joint use of the Army and
various theaters and to major areas within the Navy, and their utilization was gov-
the theaters. 27 The OCT representatives erned by joint committees with headquar-
were General Wylie and Colonel Farr. ters at San Francisco. This decentraliza-
Following the appointment of this sub- tion of control over troopships and troop
committee, allocations were made in a movements was an expedient that the
more orderly manner after careful study, Chief of Transportation accepted reluc-
and the problem itself was lessened some- tantly.29
what by the delivery of new troopships Close collaboration between the Office
and the temporary conversion of Liberty of the Chief of Transportation and the
ships to carry troops. Nevertheless, the 26
Memo, Styer for Marshall, 9 Aug 43, sub: Em-
differences between Army and Navy in- ployment of Troop Lift in Atlantic and Pacific, OCS
terests remained, and the difficulty of 570; Memo, Meyer for CofT, 13 Sep 43, sub: Use of
Navy-Controlled Unescortees in Atlantic, OCT HB
reaching agreement regarding the em- Meyer Staybacks.
ployment of troopships was never entirely 27
Memo, Dir NTS for CofT, 18 Sep 43, sub:
removed.28 Transport Assignment to Ocean Areas, and reply, 28
Sep 43; both in OCT HB Meyer Staybacks; JMTC-
51st Mtg, 14 Oct 43, Item 2.
The procedures for scheduling troop- 28
Memo, Vice Adm Frederick J. Home for Lt Gen
shipsthat is, fixing loading berths and Joseph T. McNarney, 19 Nov 43, sub: Trans of Army
Engineers to India, and related documents in OPD
sailing dates for specific voyageswere 560 (24 Jan 44); Ltrs, Farr to Stokes, 19 and 21 Nov
not the same in the Atlantic as in the 43 (Stokes was then attending the inter-Allied con-
Pacific. Since the Army's interest pre- ference in Cairo); Memo, CofT for Brig Gen Carl A.
Russell, OPD, 24 Aug 44; last three in OCT HB Farr
dominated in areas served from U.S. At- Staybacks.
lantic ports, sailings from those ports were 29
See below, pp. 161-62.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 95
33
Operations Division of the War Depart- if waste of troop lift was to be avoided.
ment General Staff was essential to the As the strategic situation became more
co-ordination of ship movement and troop stabilized and planning procedures were
movement plans. On the basis of estimates improved, changes in movement pro-
of theater troop requirements obtained grams were less frequent, but in view of
from OPD, corresponding data obtained the scope and nature of the war some such
from the Navy, and forecasts of troopships adjustments were inevitable.
likely to be available, the Movements The Chief of Transportation believed
Division prepared a statement of the po- that the obvious advantages of thorough
tential troop lift to each theater for each co-ordination between troop movement
six-month period. A revised statement was plans, as developed by OPD, and troop-
prepared at the beginning of every ship movements, as planned by his office,
month.30 The OCT frequently indicated could best be accomplished by direct col-
to OPD how adjustments could be made laboration between these offices. He
in the plans for troop movements to the therefore protested against any interven-
respective theaters to make better use of tion by the Mobilization Division, ASF,
the available vessels.31 When emergency and refused to allow that division to in-
troop shipments were necessary, the OCT fluence his plans for the employment of
calculated how they could be accom- vessels, which he believed to be based on
plished with the least disturbance to the best available information and expert
movement plans and ship schedules technical knowledge. The primary func-
already set up.32 tion of the Mobilization Division was to
Changes in troop movement plans co-ordinate supply and troop movements,
necessitating adjustments in shipping and it was expected to follow develop-
schedules created serious problems for the ments to insure that such movements were
Chief of Transportation. Cargo-ship sched- effectively executed. Close collaboration
ules as well as troopship programs often between the Chief of Transportation's staff
had to be adjusted. When such changes and the Mobilization Division obviously
were occasioned by strategic developments was necessary, but General Gross con-
or were ordered by the President as the sidered inadmissible any intrusion of the
result of top-level decisions or interna-
30
tional agreements, there was no cure for See Memo, CofT for OPD, 4 Apr 43, sub: Fore-
cast of Shipping; Memo, CofT for OPD, 26 Nov 43,
the difficulty. But the Chief of Transpor- sub: Six-Month Requirements; both in OCT HB Farr
tation believed that the shuffling of move- Staybacks; Memo, CofT for Dir Plans and Opns ASF,
ments by "higher echelons" of the War 8 Dec 44, and other dates, OCT 370.5. Copies of these
statements were furnished to ASF headquarters as
and Navy Departments went beyond that well as to OPD.
which was necessary and indicated a lack 31
Memo, CofT for OPD, 8 Jun 43, sub: Troop Lift
of foresight and a failure to appreciate the to India, OCT 370.5 India; Memo, CofT for OPD,
13 Nov 43, sub: Effect on Shipping of Proposed
shipping problem involved. He also ob- Movement to Pacific, OCT 000-370.5 POA.
jected to efforts by superior headquarters 32
Memo, Wylie for Gross, 13 May 42, sub: Para-
to have specific vessels assigned to specific troopers, OCT 000-900 Queen Elizabeth.
33
movements or particular areas. This was Memo, CofT for CofS for Opns SOS, 23 Jan 43,
sub: Issuance of Mvmt Orders; Memo, CofT for Dir
a matter, he felt, that should be left NTS, 10 Aug 43, sub: Troop Deployment Program;
entirely to the transportation organization both in OCT HB Meyer Staybacks.
96 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

Mobilization Division into transportation service from troopships dictated a policy


operations or into the relationship between of turning them around at the ports as
the OCT and OPD. During 1943 thererapidly as possible. This policy was a ma-
was sharp disagreement on the subject be- jor consideration with the Movements Di-
tween General Gross and General Lutes, vision in preparing schedules for the At-
Director of Operations, ASF, under whose lantic. It frequently met with opposition
direction the Mobilization Division func- from the operators of the vessels, who de-
tioned. General Gross did not relax his sired more time for repairing, storing, and
position, and General Lutes' proposal to fueling the ships, even though the pressure
establish a transportation co-ordination for delivery of troops to the theaters was a
section in the Mobilization Division was compelling argument. The Army ports of
not carried out. While opposing the exten- embarkation and the War Shipping Ad-
sion of the division's activities to transpor- ministration usually could be persuaded
tation, the Chief of Transportation gave it to accept the Movements Division's sched-
warm praise as a movements co-ordinat- ules with respect to the vessels under their
ing agency.34 control, but the Navy held more rigidly to
Since Colonel Farr as chief of the Move- its operating standards. The Movements
ments Division had a central role in the Division, as has been stated, did not have
effort to fit troop movement plans and the same control over the dispatch of
ship movements neatly together, his views vessels from west coast ports, and it often
on the mission of the Chief of Transporta- complained about the time taken to com-
tion in this matter are of interest. Fan- plete repairs on troopships employed in
found that the several Army staff agencies the Pacific. There were several explana-
concerned with programming oversea tions for the extensive lay-upsthe long
movements did not always agree, nor did periods that the ships spent away from
the Army and the Navy. When these au- their home ports, the lack of repair facili-
thorities were at odds on what troops should ties at most ports in the Pacific areas, and
be moved, the Chief of Transportation felt the fact that west coast repair yards were
that it was his duty to tell them what could heavily engaged with naval work of top
be movedthat is, what deployment of prioritybut their effect on the execution
troops would accomplish the most effec- of planned troop movements is obvious.36
tive use of the available troop lift. This 34
Memo, Lutes for CofT, 26 Mar 43, OPD 381
procedure gave rise to the accusation that (120-140); Memo, CofT for Lutes, 3 Apr 43, OCT
the Chief of Transportation was endeavor- HB Meyer Staybacks; ASF Cir 23, 28 Apr 43, sub:
Troop Mvmt Co-ordinating Center; Memo, Lutes for
ing to determine strategy. On the con- CG ASF, 22 Oct 43; Memo, Finlay for Wylie, 26 Oct
trary, Farr maintained, the Chief of Trans- 43; last two in OCT HB Ex Co-ordination with Staff
portation's purpose was to serve the higher Agencies ASF; ASF Adm Memo S-96, 20 Nov 43,
sub: Mvmt Co-ordinating Center; Memo, Gross for
authorities of the War Department and Lutes, 16 Mar 44, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
the theater commanders, and the Chief of 35
Ltr, Farr to author, 15 Nov 49, OCT HB Mvmts
Transportation believed that he was per- Div Gen. 36
Memo, Farr for Wylie, 16 Mar 45, sub: Utiliza-
forming such a service when he indicated tion of Troopships, OCT HB Water Div Ship Repair
how the limited shipping resources could and Conversion; Memo, CofT for Mil Pers Div ASF,
be used to obtain maximum results.35 13 May 45, OCT HB Mvmts Div Ouderkirk Stay-
The need for getting the maximum backs; Interv with Farr, 28 Apr 51, OCT HB Mvmts
Div Gen; Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 183-84.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 97

The Movements Division kept account changing troop requirements and the un-
of the status of all vessels carrying or com- certainty of ship movements, the Chief of
mitted to carry U.S. troops or their equip- Transportation considered it essential to
ment. During the latter part of the war his task of making the best possible use of
these records embraced upwards of a the ships. One phase of this planning was
thousand troopships and freighters. A type the six-month estimate of troop lift on the
of record was needed that would disclose several routes that was furnished by the
at all times the locations of the vessels, Chief of Transportation to OPD and ASF
their speeds and capacities, and their headquarters. Beginning early in 1944
prospective sailing dates, destinations, and these estimates, prepared under the super-
arrival dates. The first such record, known vision of General Wylie, Assistant Chief of
informally as "slipstick," was a set of flex- Transportation for Operations, were elab-
line sheets on which the vessels were posted orated in charts called transportation
according to routes or convoys. These operational projections. The primary pur-
sheets could be changed readily as new in- pose of these projections was "to provide
formation was received and photographed the key planning and operating personnel
for distribution to all concerned as often as of the Transportation Corps with graphic
circumstances required. The effectiveness data reflecting the future movement of
of this device as a basis for planning troop troops and cargo between U.S. ports and
movements was dependent on the ade- oversea theaters, and with the measure of
quacy and the accuracy of the informa- achievement in meeting forecasts." The
tion received from the oversea com- basic charts showed for each theater, for
mands. Time was required to bring thea- each month of the past six months, the
ter commanders to an appreciation of the number of troops made ready to move
need for this information, and advices during the month in accordance with
concerning ship movements in the Pacific theater priorities and the number carried
were inadequate during the greater part forward as a backlog from the preceding
of the war. By early 1945, however, the month. The sum of these constituted the
receipt of ship movement reports had im- "effective target" for the month, against
proved to a point that justified the erec- which were set the actual embarkations.
tion of an electrically controlled position A continuation of these charts reflected
board, which by the operation of switches the estimated embarkations for each of the
could be made to show the location of a ensuing six months. Supplementary dia-
particular ship or the ships in a particular grams were prepared to show the fluctua-
port. This visual aid was supplemented by tions in the advance estimates of troop
a set of vessel cards giving full information requirements prepared by OPD, and how
on the ships themselves, their capacities,
37
and their movements. The system, though Memo, Opns Div OCT for Water Div OCT, 4
May 42, sub: Slipstick Plan, OCT HB Meyer Stay-
not used until late in the war, proved of backs; Ltr, Farr to CofT ETOUSA, 5 Oct 43; Memo,
value in controlling the huge fleet on Lt Col Carl E. Berzelius, Mvmts Div OCT, for Wylie,
which troops were transported during the 16 Mar 45, sub: Problems in POA and SWPA;
redeployment and repatriation periods.
37 Memo, Farr for C of Contl Div OCT, 14 Jan 46; last
three in OCT HB Farr Staybacks; Ltr, Farr to author,
Although advance planning was neces- 14 Feb 50, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen. Copies of slip-
sarily tentative because of the constantly stick in OCT HB Ex File.
98 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS
CHART 3PASSENGERS EMBARKED MONTHLY BY THE ARMY AT U.S. PORTS FOR OVERSEA
DESTINATIONS: DECEMBER 1941-DECEMBER 1945*

* Atlantic areas include North and Latin America, Greenland, Iceland, United Kingdom, continental Europe, Medi-
terranean, Africa, and the Middle East. Pacific areas include western Canada, Alaska, Central Pacific, South Pacific,
Southwest Pacific, western Pacific, India, Burma, Japan, and Korea.
Source: Monthly reports by ports of embarkation to Movements Division, OCT, reworked for statistical volume of
this series, now in preparation.

actual embarkations compared with these at the end of hostilities the troop capacity
estimated requirements and with the of the vessels serving the Army was ten
number of troops on the theater priority times that figure.39 The Army embarka-
list that were ready to move. The charts tions in December 1941 totaled 29,800
gave the Office of the Chief of Transporta- passengers, while in January 1945, when
tion a basis for studying the results of the outbound movement reached a peak,
planning and operations during preceding 295,100 were embarked. (Chart 3) The in-
months and for drawing conclusions for crease was brought about through the ex-
guidance in the future. There were similar ploitation of all practicable meansin-
charts for the shipment of Army cargo to creasing the capacity of existing passenger
38
the theaters. vessels, building new troopships, convert-
ing cargo ships, using the limited pas-
The growth of the Army's troop lift is 38
Copies of the transportation operational projec-
illustrated by the fact that G-4, a few days tions for August and September 1944 are in OCT HB
after Pearl Harbor, estimated the capacity Dir of Opns.
39
Study, Trans Br G-4 WDGS, 10 Dec 41, sub:
of the ships then available for Army troop Analysis of Passenger Shipping, OCT HB Gross Day
service to be about 65,000 troops, whereas File; ASF MPR, Aug 45, p. 50.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 99

senger accommodations on unconverted 1antic because an early end of the war


cargo ships, and employing British and against Germany was anticipated and
other foreign troopships. Yet from the maximum capacity would then be re-
standpoint of the military authorities con- quired for redeploying troops from Eu-
cerned with planning strategy, the troop rope. The decision was fortunate, because
lift never was large enough. The Chief of with the launching of the German coun-
Transportation, moreover, repeatedly teroffensive in December 1944 the move-
found that embarkations fell somewhat ment of troops to Europe again became
short of the target he had helped to set. heavy and all available space was re-
The latter fact is explained chiefly by de- quired. This stringency was soon over,
lay in the work of converting cargo ships however, and from February 1945 until
on which the Chief of Transportation redeployment began there was a surplus
counted heavily in his planning.40 The un- of troop lift in the Atlantic. The commit-
foreseen retention of vessels in the theaters ment of so many additional troops in Eu-
and the extensive repairs required by rope in the winter of 1944-45 reduced the
vessels returning to U.S. ports, particu- number available for the Pacific and re-
larly those returning from long voyages in lieved somewhat the demand for troop lift
the Pacific, also upset the forecasts. at west coast ports.41
The statement that the troop lift was
never large enough requires some quali- The Ports of Embarkation
fication with respect to the period from
June 1944 onward. The build-up offerees The long-range planning and the day-
in the United Kingdom for the invasion of to-day adjustments in projected oversea
the Continent, the pressure of the cam- troop movements and ship movements,
paign in the Mediterranean, and the effort which were accomplished in Washington,
to increase troop strength in the Pacific were carried into effect by the ports of
and Asiatic theaters as rapidly as possible embarkation. The port commanders con-
kept the demand for troop lift strong on trolled the movement of troops and their
both Atlantic and Pacific coasts until after equipment from home stations to the sea-
the invasion of France had been launched. board, inspected and processed both
Then, because battle casualties and the troops and equipment to insure that they
demand for replacements were not as high were ready for oversea service, prepared
as had been expected, the troop shipping 40
Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 207-08, 305-07; Memo,
situation in the North Atlantic became CofT for PEs, 26 Aug 43, sub: Vessels Repair Info,
perceptibly easier. This made it possible to and atchd rad to oversea commanders; Memo, Farr
for Wylie, 4 Oct 43; last two inOCT HB Farr Stay-
release some of the temporarily converted backs; Memo, Farr for Maj Gen John M. Franklin,
Liberty ships from troop service, to release 14 Mar 44, OCT 564 Troop Transports.
41
part of the space on British ships, and to Memo, Somervell for Marshall, 22 Jun 44, sub:
relax somewhat the practice of "overload- Ship Capabilities, ASF Hq Shipping 1944; Min of
OCT Opns Mtg, 13 Jul 44, p. 3, OCT HB Dir of
ing" transportsthat is, loading them Opns; Memo, Farr for Wylie, 1 Aug 44, sub: Troop
beyond the normal troop capacity. The Mvmt Trends, OCT HB Farr Stay backs; Memo,
troop lift deficit continued in the Pacific, Wylie for Somervell, 20 Dec 44, sub: Troop Trans-
port Position, OCT HB Meyer Staybacks; Memo,
but the Chief of Transportation decided Farr for Gross, 17 Jan 45, sub: Briefing; Memo, CofT
against transferring vessels from the At- for Traf Div AAF, 27 Feb 45; last two in OCT 370.5.
100 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

TABLE 9PASSENGERS EMBARKED BY THE PRINCIPAL ARMY PORTS: DECEMBER


a
1941-DECEMBER 1945

a
Figures include military personnel of the Army, Navy, and Allied nations, civilians, and prisoners of war. Embarkations by cargo
ports and subports on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts are combined with embarkations at the ports of embarkation to which they were sub-
ordinate. When embarkations at these subordinate ports were reported separately, they are stated in footnotes, but such figures may not
be complete.
b
Number of passengers embarked at Halifax, a subport of Boston, is not available. Boston was a subport of New York until July 1942.
c
Includes 225 passengers embarked at the Philadelphia cargo port in 1943, and 250 in 1944.
d
Includes 295 passengers embarked at the Baltimore cargo port in 1942, 1,044 in 1943, 84 in 1944, and 11 in 1945. Hampton Roads
was a subport of New York until June 1942.
e
Charleston was a subport of New York until January 1942.
f
Includes 751 passengers embarked during 1942 at Miami, Key West, and Galveston.
g
Los Angeles was a subport of San Francisco until October 1943.
h
Includes 17,048 passengers embarked at Portland, as a subport of San Francisco, through August 1944.
i
Includes 4,838 passengers embarked at Portland, as a subport of Seattle, September-December 1944. Seattle was a subport of San
Francisco until January 1942.
j
See notes h and i concerning embarkations prior to 1945. Portland continued as a subport of Seattle during 1945, although its em-
barkations are shown separately.
k
Prince Rupert was a subport of Seattle.
Source: Monthly reports of ports of embarkations to Movements Division, OCT, reworked for statistical volume of this series, now in
preparation.

billeting plans for the transports, moved tion at Boston served the North Atlantic
the troops from staging areas to shipside bases and northern Europe; New York
and embarked them, and provided for was concerned principally with move-
their comfort, control, and entertainment ments to northern Europe and the Medi-
on board.42 terranean; Hampton Roads shipped
Each port of embarkation was assigned chiefly to Africa and the Mediterranean;
primary responsibility for one or a few Charleston embarked troops to various
oversea areas, but also made shipments to destinations but served principally as the
other areas, so that the over-all pattern of
42
movements was complex. Moreover, the AR 55-390, 16 Dec 42, par. 10, gives a broad
outline of port commanders' duties. See also Memo,
port responsibilities were subject to ad- CG SOS for Dirs and Gs of Staff Divs, et al., 1 Jul 42,
justment as conditions changed. In the sub: Procedures for Booking Individuals and Small
latter part of the war the port of embarka- Groups, OCT 541.1 Small Groups.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 101
TABLE 10PASSENGERS EMBARKED BY THE ARMY FOR THE SEVERAL OVERSEA AREAS:
a
DECEMBER 1941-DECEMBER 1945

a
The grouping into Atlantic and Pacific areas indicates that the passengers were embarked mainly but not exclusively at Atlantic and
Gulf ports or at Pacific ports.
b
Includes bases in Canada, Newfoundland, Greenland, and Bermuda.
c
Includes Panama Canal Zone, Caribbean, South America, and South Atlantic.
d
Includes North Africa, Sicily, and Italy.
e
Middle East includes Egypt, Red Sea, and Iran.
f
Includes Iceland, United Kingdom, and continental Europe.
g
Includes Alaska and western Canada.
h
Central and South Pacific were combined into Pacific Ocean Areas in 1944.
i
Includes embarkations for western Pacific, Japan, and Korea after those areas were occupied by U.S. forces.
j
Includes India, Burma, and China.
Source: Monthly reports by ports of embarkation to Movements Division, OCT, reworked for statistical volume of this series, now in
preparation.

home port for Army hospital ships as- embarkation, were relatively small. More
signed to the Atlantic; New Orleans han- than 45 percent of the passengers em-
dled troop traffic to the Panama Canal, barked by the Army during the war pe-
Latin America, and the Pacific bases; riod were destined for the European
San Francisco was a transshipment point theater, and more than 42 percent were
for troops proceeding to all of the Pacific embarked under the jurisdiction of the
areas; Los Angeles served the Asiatic and New York Port of Embarkation. (Tables 9
Pacific theaters; and the Seattle Port of and 10, and Chart 4)
Embarkation was responsible for ship- The ports of embarkation were advised
ments to Alaska and western Canada and by the Chief of Transportation as far in
also served the Central Pacific.43 The advance as possible concerning the troops
numbers of troops shipped from the sub- 43
ASF MPR, Jan 44, Sec. 3, p. 46, graphically
ports and the cargo ports, each of which shows "troop relationships" of U.S. ports and thea-
functioned under the control of a port of ters, October-December 1943.
102 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS
CHART 4PASSENGERS EMBARKED BY THE ARMY AT U.S. PORTS FOR THE SEVERAL
OVERSEA AREAS: DECEMBER 1941-DECEMBER 1945 *

a
b
Includes a small number of passengers embarked in Canada.
c
Includes Alaska and Canadian Pacific ports.
Includes North, Central, and South America, Greenland, Bermuda, and South Atlantic islands.
d
e
Includes South and Central Pacific.
Includes North and Central Africa, Sicily, Italy, Red Sea, and Persian Gulf.
f
g
Includes western Pacific.
h
Includes troops for China, Burma, India.
Includes Iceland, United Kingdom, northern Continent, southern France.
Source: Reports from ports of embarkation to Movements Division, OCT, reworked for a statistical volume of this
series, now in preparation.

and organizational equipment that they ing the ports through which they were to
would be expected to embark during suc- move and the dates on which they were to
ceeding months. In the beginning such in- be ready to leave their home stations,
formation was irregular, but later a defi- copies were sent to the port commanders.
nite procedure was followed. The first ad- As rapidly as specific ships could be
vices, usually given six months in advance, named to sail on specific dates, the ports
included an estimate of the troop spaces to were notified. The troops and their equip-
be available during each month and the ment were then called forward by the port
types of troops to be moved. These esti- commanders in accordance with the pri-
mates enabled the port commanders to ority lists, the ability of the port facilities
enlarge or reduce their staffs and their to accommodate them, and the avail-
facilities according to the prospective load. ability of ships to move them.44
Frequent changes in the forecasts were 44
Memo, CofT for HRPE and SFPE, 16 Apr 43,
necessary as theater priority lists were re- sub: Priorities for Late April, OCT 370.5 South Pa-
vised and as firmer estimates of the ship- cific; Msg, CofT to NYPE and HRPE, 11 Jul 43;
ping situation became possible. When Memo, CofT for BPE and NYPE, 26 Jan 44, sub:
Vessel Allocations; Ltr, Gross to CG NYPE, 1 Jul 44,
movement orders for specific units, re- summarizing procedures; last three in OCT HB Farr
placements, or fillers were issued indicat- Staybacks.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 103

The port commanders were responsible governed by the approved priority list for
for notifying the theater commanders the theater concerned. But sometimes
when troops were shipped overseas. The when the sailings to an oversea area were
Operations Division of the General Staff infrequent, or when the theater's require-
kept the theaters informed regarding War ments were especially urgent, the Chief of
Department actions on their priority lists, Transportation indicated that certain
but such advices dealt only with types of units were to sail on certain vessels.46
units and tentative departure dates. The Loading plans were often upset by late
first advice from a port of embarkation to changes in priorities. In some instances
a theater of destination was the "loading units for which movement orders had
cable," which was dispatched about a been issued were not able to pass inspec-
week or ten days before the sailing. The tion by the scheduled readiness dates be-
loading cable identified the troops that cause of shortages of personnel or equip-
were expected to be embarked on a par- ment or deficiencies in training. In this
ticular ship for sailing on a particular day. situation OPD designated other units of
From such messages the theaters were the same type if they were available, or,
able to make preparations for the han- as was often the case, the port commander
dling of the ships and the disposition of the substituted troops that were already at the
troops and their equipment. As soon as port staging area, following the theater
possible after a ship or convoy had sailed, priority list as nearly as possible. Every
the port sent a "sailing cable," which gave effort was made to avoid letting a ship sail
the actual time of departure. Passenger with empty spaces when the theater was
lists and cargo manifests were forwarded in need of troops.
to the theaters by air mail in order to ar- The organizations at the port for han-
rive in advance of the vessels. Because of dling troop movements were not uniform.
the unusually heavy movements to the Early in 1944 the Chief of Transportation
European theater and the careful plan- issued a "typical organization chart" for
ning that was necessary in advance of the the ports and requested them to follow it
troops' arrival, that theater was notified in so far as practicable, but because of dif-
the sailing cable of any changes that had ferent conditions in the several localities
been made in the troop list after the load- and personal preferences on the part of the
ing cable had been dispatched. In the early port commanders organizational differ-
part of the war the theaters complained of ences persisted.47 There were, however,
the failure of the ports of embarkation to several groups of related functions to be
give them full and prompt advices, but 45
Memo, C of Trans Br G-4 for CGs of PEs, 12
the system was steadily improved. This Jan 42, sub: Sailing Info to Oversea Comdrs, G-4/
improvement was facilitated by frequent 29717-114; Ltr, Col Frank S. Ross, CofT ETOUSA,
exchanges, between ports of embarkation to Wylie, 15 Aug 42, OCT 319.1 England; Memo,
and the theaters they served, of liaison CG SFPE for CofT, 18 Sep 45, sub: Accomplishments
and Handicaps, OCT HB SFPE Gen.
officers for short tours of duty. 45 46
Memo, CofT for CG SFPE, 2 Jan 43, sub: Sailing
The preparation of the loading plan, of West Point for Middle East, OCT 353.01-400.93
showing the troops that were to be em- Middle East; Memo, CofT for CG CPE, NYPE, etc.,
15 Aug 43, sub: Priorities for Asiatic Theater, etc.,
barked on a particular ship, was usually OCT 370.5.
47
left to the port commander, who was Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 100-102.
104 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

performed at all ports. The ships had to be teletype and telephone connections were
made ready for the embarkation of troops used. Maj. Gen. Homer M. Groninger,
and their impedimenta. Arrangements who commanded the New York Port of
had to be made for the transportation of Embarkation until V-E Day and then be-
troops and impedimenta into and within came commander of the San Francisco
the port area. The enforcement of theater Port of Embarkation, remarked that the
priorities and War Department move- daily teletype conferences that the ports
ment orders, the calling of troops to the held with the chiefs of transportation in
ports, and the planning of embarkations the theaters were of "inestimable value."
constituted another group of related ac- Colonel Farr, expressing the view of the
tivities. Control of the movement, process- Office of the Chief of Transportation, cor-
ing, and loading of the equipment and roborated that opinion. To emphasize the
supplies that accompanied troops, or were point, he stated that during the redeploy-
marked for particular units though mov- ment period the information received
ing separately, made up another func- from the European theater was unsatis-
tional field. In addition, the port com- factory because the theater did not permit
manders were responsible for regulating its port commanders to communicate di-
the flow of maintenance supplies for the rectly with the zone of interior, and that
support of troops after their arrival over- there were usually omissions and delays
seas. In the typical plan issued by the when messages regarding troops sailing
Chief of Transportation, these five groups from European ports had to be relayed
of functions were assigned to five divisions, through the theater headquarters.48
designated Water Division, Port Trans- Maintaining secrecy in communica-
portation Division, Troop Movement Di- tions between the Office of the Chief of
vision, Initial Troop Equipment Division, Transportation and the ports was a con-
and Oversea Supply Division. This five- stant problem. Messages transmitted over
division organization was actually em- the Transportation Corps teletypewriter
ployed only at New York; at other ports network were coded and hence were con-
movements of troops and equipment were sidered safe, but urgent business could be
supervised by the same division, and there transacted much more satisfactorily by
were other departures from the typical telephone. Although telephone conversa-
plan. tions were "scrambled," the Intelligence
Because of the close co-operation that Division (G-2) of the General Staff did not
was necessary between the Office of the regard this as providing adequate security.
Chief of Transportation, the ports of em- Accordingly, the transmission by tele-
barkation in the zone of interior, and the phone of certain information such as sail-
oversea theaters, the communication sys- ing dates, names of vessels, identification
tems by which these agencies were linked
were of utmost importance. Exchanges of 48
Memo, CofT for All PEs, et al., 9 Aug 42, sub:
information and adjustments in programs Secret Communications, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen;
had to be made quickly as sailing dates Memo, CG SFPE for CofT, 18 Sep 45, sub: Accom-
plishments and Handicaps, par. 6, OCT HB SFPE
approached, and the transmission of mes- Gen; Memo, Farr for Finlay, 19 Sep 45, sub: Lessons
sages had to be secret as well as fast. Both Learned, p. 2, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 105
49
of units, and destinations was forbidden. of theater requirements, shipping capabil-
Breaches of these security rules were ities, the training status of troops, and the
sometimes risked in order to get business readiness of equipment. Such study rep-
of great urgency transacted. Such breaches resented the combined efforts of the Oper-
when detected by G-2 caused embarrass- ations Division of the General Staff, the
ment to the officers involved, but there is Operations Division of Army Service
no evidence that the enemy was ever Forces headquarters, The Inspector Gen-
benefited. eral, and the Chief of Transportation.50
The process of making troops ready for
Movement to the Ports shipment to the theaters and moving the
men and their impedimenta to the ports
Preparations for the movement of troops in an orderly and timely manner involved
to the ports began with instructions issued a number of Army agenciesthe major
by OPD to the AGF, the AAF, or the ASF, commands (AGF, AAF, and ASF) to
directing that necessary steps be taken to which the troops belonged, the corps areas
prepare specific types of troops for ship- (later service commands), the command-
ment to stated oversea theaters, and setting ers of home stations, the unit commanders,
approximate dates on which the troops the chiefs of technical services who pro-
were to be ready to leave their home sta- vided equipment and supplies, and the
tions. These instructions normally were ports of embarkation. During 1940 and
issued about six weeks before actual move- 1941 it became increasingly apparent that
ment. Specific units, or groups of replace- co-ordination between these agencies
ments, were designated and alerted as soon lacked effectiveness and that more ade-
as possible. As the date approached for the quate definition of the duties of each was
departure of a unit from its home station, necessary. Late in 1941, at the request of
a movement order was issued by The Ad- the Chief of Staff, The Inspector General
jutant General at the request of the AGF,
the AAF, or the ASF, giving complete in- 49
structions regarding the strength of the OCT Adm Memo 116, 7 Oct 42, Sec. 1; Memo,
CofT for Agencies Listed, 30 Jan 43, sub: TC Priority
unit, authorized equipment and supplies, Teletype, OCT 676.2; TC Cir 45-6, 24 Jul 44, sub:
the port for which the movement was Communications Security; Memo, CofT for PEs, 5
destined, and the latest date for arrival at Aug 44, sub: Communications Security Course, OCT
000.72/TC Misc; TC Cir 50-14, revised 31 Jan 45,
the port. The movement order included a sub: Ships' Port Serial Numbers.
shipment number that was used there- 50
Procedures and responsibilities for priority lists
after in identifying the troops and their and movement orders are dealt with in the following:
Memo, TAG for CG AGF, et al., 5 Jan 43, sub: Org,
impedimenta in order to obviate reference Tng, and Equip of Units, AG 320.2 (1-2-43); Memo,
to their military designations. The move- DCofS USA for ACofS G-1, G-3, G-4, OPD, 5 Aug
ment order also included any special in- 43, sub; Mvmts to Theaters; Memo, ACofS OPD for
Theater Group, et al., 12 Aug 43, sub: OPD Co-ordi-
structions required by the unit com- nation of Pers, Troop and Matriel Matters; Memo,
mander or the commander of the port at OPD for DCofS, 10 Nov 43, sub: Troop Mvmt Pro-
which the troops were to be staged and jection; last three in WDCSA 370.5 (Secret); WD
Pamphlet 29-3, 24 Oct 44, Oversea Travel Orders for
embarked. These instructions were issued Casuals, Replacements, and Individuals (short title,
only after a careful study had been made OTO).
106 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

made a study of the problem in connec- entrainment, and to establish a complete


tion with troops moving through the ports understanding between the unit com-
of embarkation at New York, San Fran- mander and the port commander regard-
cisco, and Seattle, and his report provided ing the personnel and the matriel being
a basis for corrective action.51 This action shipped. The periods normally allowed
was spurred by the outbreak of war with between the dates when units were alerted
Germany and Japan and the prospect of and the dates when they were to be ready
vastly increased troop shipments. It took to move were theoretically adequate to
the form of more explicit instructions in allow shortages of personnel and equip-
the movement orders and the issuance of ment and deficiencies in training to be
separate instructions covering standard overcome, but frequently this proved not
procedures that could be referred to in to be the case. Especially during the early
movement orders. part of the war, when the production of
The separate instructions, eventually equipment and supplies was slow and
published in pamphlet form, became the training programs were lagging, the port
"bible" of officers concerned with troop commanders were obliged to assume ex-
movements. The basic document, entitled ceedingly heavy burdens in correcting
Preparation for Overseas Movement (short such deficiencies at the staging areas. The
title, POM), was issued first in February Chief of Transportation, while encourag-
1943 and was later greatly expanded and ing his port commanders to take all possi-
reissued as experience accumulated. It ble measures to meet the responsibility,
was supplemented by pamphlets entitled kept up a constant campaign for more
Additional Preparation for Overseas complete compliance with the provisions
Movement for AAF Units (short title, of POM on preparations at home stations,
AIR-POM), Identification of Organiza- but his effort was only partly successful.53
tional Impedimenta (short title, IOI), and It was logical that the movement of
Preparation for Overseas Movement of both troops and impedimenta from home
Individual Replacements (short title, stations to ports of embarkation should be
POR).52 The publication of standard pro- controlled by the port commanders. They
cedures was a great boon to the Chief of were in possession of approved priority
Transportation, whose headquarters was lists and of movement orders indicating
responsible for all transportation arrange- the dates when specific units were to be
ments, and whose port organizations had ready to go forward; they also knew more
ultimate responsibility for the condition of accurately than anyone else when the
troops and impedimenta when they were staging areas would be able to receive
dispatched overseas. His staff naturally additional troops and when the ships
had played an important role in formulat-
ing these procedures. 51
Detailed instructions regarding the Memo, TIG for CofS, 19 Nov 41, sub: Supply
and Mvmt of Units, G-4/33098.
preparation of troops at home stations 52
Author's Memo, 22 Feb 44, sub: Instructions Re-
before their movement to the ports were garding Preparation of Troops and Impedimenta for
included in POM. In general, the objec- Movement Overseas, summarizing actions taken, with
documents attached, OCT HB PE Gen Troop Mvmts
tive was to have units at full strength, com- to Port.
pletely trained and equipped, before 53
See below, pp. 117-19.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 107

would be ready for loading.54 The control When port commanders were not able
authority vested in the port commanders to call troops by the readiness dates given
applied to replacements as well as to troop in the movement orders, they were ex-
units. As a general practice the port com- pected to propose new readiness dates as
mander's summons, which became known promptly as possible. But the port com-
as a call, was issued at least five days before manders were instructed to keep depar-
the troops were expected to entrain. It tures from readiness dates, whether
stated the staging area to which the troops advancements or deferments, to a mini-
were to be delivered and the date of their mum. 58 To assist port commanders in de-
55
arrival. The Chief of Transportation re- termining when calls should be issued, the
ceived a copy of each call, and his Traffic Chief of Transportation supplied them
Control Division took immediate steps to with data regarding the time in transit to
establish a rail routing for the shipment be allowed from the respective service
and to arrange for rail equipment to be commands to the respective ports for troop
available at the home station on the trains, freight trains, and mixed trains.59
departure date.56 The movement of troop impedimenta
The actual date of departure from the to the ports gave rise to special problems
home station frequently differed from the because the shipments flowed from many
date contemplated when the movement sources. A considerable part of the equip-
was initiated. Changes in the priority lists ment and supplies was not shipped from
approved by OPD and adverse reports by home stations but from technical service
The Inspector General on the condition of depots and from manufacturing plants.
units often caused movements to be de- Matching these numerous shipments with
layed. Usually such delays were counter- the troops for which they were intended
balanced by the advancement of other was an intricate problem at the ports. Al-
movements. The port commanders some- though the instructions on the subject were
times called troops to the staging areas explicit, information furnished the port
slightly ahead of their readiness dates. commanders concerning such shipments
Such advancements might be the conse- was often inadequate or arrived too late to
quence of other units being deferred or of
adjustments in the sailing schedules for 54
Memo, ACofS G-4 for TAG, 1 Jan 42, sub: En-
troop transports. In either case the units trainment of Troops, G-4/33700; Memo, TAG for
advanced were needed to fill available GofAAF, et al., 2 Jan 42, AG 370.5 (1-1-42); Memo,
TQMG for Trans Br G-4, 12 Jan 42, sub: Overseas
ship space. Because such advancements Troop Mvmts, G-4/33700.
sometimes drew protests from the major 55
In the beginning some ports referred to these calls
commands concerned, the Chief of Trans- as movement orders, but this was stopped because of
confusion with movement orders issued by TAG; see
portation arranged that, in cases where a Memo, Dir of Plng ASF for CofT, 28 Oct 43, sub: Call
major command decided that a unit was Issued 56
by PEs, OCT 523.06 Follow-up of Shipments.
not in condition to comply with the port TC Cir 100-6, 5 Oct 44, sub: POM, and changes,
concerning distribution of copies of calls.
call and there were no other units on the 57
Memo, CofT for CG AGF, 25 Jan 43, OCT 370.5
priority list suitable for substitution, the Readiness Dates.
58
facts would be presented to OPD for a Msg, CofT to Port Comdrs, 10 Aug 43, OCT HB
Farr Staybacks.
decision that would, if possible, avoid a 59
TC Cir 100-4, 20 Jun 44, sub: Troop and/or
waste of ship space.57 Impedimenta Mvmt by Rail to Ports.
108 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS
60
be of service. Shipments of impedimenta advance work. The port commanders en-
were usually called to move from home couraged the early arrival of such details
stations ahead of the troops because of the and the assignment of adequate personnel,
longer period required en route. Both the but unit commanders did not always make
AGF and the ASF complained that not satisfactory arrangements. When espe-
enough time was allowed to prepare cially large units were to be moved, the
equipment for shipment, and the port port commanders sent their representa-
commanders were instructed to issue calls tives to home stations to assist the units
as early as possible. However, the port with their planning. As a further aid to
commanders were limited in this respect unit commanders, the New York Port of
by conditions at the ports and by the fact Embarkation prepared a motion picture
that many units were not cleared by The portraying the execution of important
Inspector General until near their readi- procedures prescribed in POM.
ness dates. To meet the latter situation, the The bulk of the troops arriving at the
Chief of Transportation arranged with staging areas traveled by rail because the
OPD that when the readiness date for a railways afforded the most satisfactory
unit drew near and the port commander service for large groups making long jour-
had not yet received clearance on the neys and simplified the problem of enforc-
training status of the troops, he might nev- ing discipline and security regulations.63
ertheless call the unit's equipment forward, The railway terminals at the larger stag-
since there was reasonable assurance that ing areas were capable of accommodating
the troops would be cleared soon.61 eight to twelve troop trains at the same
Troops usually were unacquainted with time. Some troops were transported to the
the ports through which they were to move ports from nearby stations by motor, but
and the procedures they were likely to en- the number was small compared with the
counter there. Several measures were total delivered by rail. Individuals and
adopted to offset this unfamiliarity. Each small groups sometimes were dispatched
port commander issued a pamphlet con- to the ports by air in order not to miss the
taining information for the guidance of ships on which they were scheduled to sail,
incoming troops, which described the facil-
ities of the port and its staging areas, the 60
Memo, TAG for Supply Arms and Services, 17
organization of the port commander's staff, Jan 42, sub: Shipments to PEs, AG 523.01 (1-17-42);
Memo, CofT for PEs, 28 Nov 42, sub: Task Force
and the practices relating to the staging Shortages; Memo, CofT for ACofS for Opns SOS, 14
and embarkation of troops, the processing Dec 42; last two in OCT 400.61 Shortages 1943.
61
of equipment, and port security. These Memo, CofT for Col Calvin De Witt, Jr., NYPE,
18 Apr 43, sub: Release of Org Equip; Memo of
pamphlets were intended to be of service Record by Col Farr, 26 Apr 43; both in OCT HB
to unit commanders both before and after Farr Staybacks. The problem of getting impedimenta
arrival at the staging areas.62 shipped so as to be available to the troops soon after
their arrival overseas had many facets. See below, pp.
Whenever a large unit was scheduled 148-61.
for movement overseas, an advance detail 62
Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 17 May 43, sub: Info
was sent to the port of embarkation to co- Concerning PEs, OCT 370.5 POM 1942-43; Pro-
cedures for Overseas Movement Through the New
ordinate matters relating to the handling York Port of Embarkation (short title, NYPE POM),
of troops and equipment. The larger the 1 Jan 44, OCT HB NYPE Troop Mvmts to Port.
unit the more time was required for this 63
Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 357-58.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 109

but here again the percentage of the total Troop Staging at the Ports
was slight.
During the early months of the war The staging areas at the ports of embar-
there was some speculation as to the feasi- kation served a dual purpose. The basic
bility of moving troops from their home conception was that they should serve as
stations directly to shipside rather than temporary stations where troops destined
sending them to port staging areas for for shipment overseas could be assembled
periods of from one to several weeks before and organized so that they could be em-
embarkation. To develop information on barked as soon as the transports were
this subject, the Chief of Transportation ready to receive them. Since there was a
requested The Inspector General to send critical shortage of ships and many troop
representatives to observe the movement transports moved in convoys with closely
of several units through the Charleston calculated departure dates, it was impor-
Port of Embarkation. The reports of the tant that vessels not be held in port wait-
observers indicated that the proposed pro- ing for troops to arrive from inland sta-
cedure was feasible under certain condi- tions. The second conception of the staging
tions but also disclosed that there were area was that of a station where troops
formidable problems in getting troops and could be processedthat is, given the final
their equipment fully ready for shipment attention necessary to make them ready
overseas before they left their home sta- for oversea service. The processing includ-
tions.64 By the time the investigation was ed bringing units to authorized strength
finished and the reports studiedsummer and correcting deficiencies relating to the
of 1942experience had established that physical condition, the personal equip-
the port staging areas had an intricate and ment, and the training status of the indi-
indispensable mission to perform, and the vidual soldiers.65 The latter role proved to
question of eliminating them from the be highly significant and more time con-
standard troop movement procedure was suming than had been foreseen. It was in-
never again given serious consideration. tended, of course, that troops returning
During a period of heavy troop move- from overseas would pass through the stag-
ment through a particular port it was ing areas for some of the processing that
advantageous to have some of the larger was necessary in connection with their
and better organized units staged at their repatriation. In addition to processing
home stations and moved from there either U.S. Army personnel, including nurses
to shipside or to a staging area for an over- and Wacs, the staging areas carried out
night stop before embarkation. In such whatever processing was necessary for
cases the port commanders sent processing personnel of the U.S. Navy, troops of
teams to the home stations. Also, some
64
groups of replacements were staged at re- Memo, TIG for Trans Div SOS, 3 Jun 42, sub:
placement depots. But the bulk of the Mvmt of Task Forces, OCT 370.5 POM 1942-43;
Interv with Col Farr, 18 Feb 44, sub: Troop Mvmts
troops received their final processing at Overseas, OCT HB PE Gen St Area Procedures.
port staging areas. In all cases the essential 65
TC Pamphlet 7, Guide for Org and Opn of
point of doctrinethat movements to the Staging Areas, 7 Feb 44, and revision, 16 Dec 46,
deal with mission, functions, and organization. See
ports should be made only on call of the also appropriate sections of PE Org Manuals, in OCT
port commanderswas observed. HB files for respective ports.
110 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

Allied nations, and civilians who were policy was to make them adequate to han-
sailing on troopships. dle the bulk of the movement. However,
several of the older stations were used for
In peacetime somewhat similar func- staging purposes throughout the war. The
tions had been performed by the oversea fluctuation in theater requirements, the
discharge and replacement depots located convoy system in the Atlantic, and delayed
at the ports, but in wartime much more ship movements made the flow of troops
extensive and complete facilities were re- through the ports uneven, and the staging
quired. This need was felt during 1941, facilities had to be capable of handling the
and the ports of embarkation then in oper- peak load.67
ation arranged for the assignment of space Higher headquarters did not always
for troop staging at nearby Army installa- agree with the Chief of Transportation's
tions. It was recognized, however, that the estimate of staging area requirements, and
space procurable in this way was limited he found it necessary to resist efforts to
and that entirely new staging areas would radically reduce the physical capacity of
have to be constructed if the United States the staging areas as well as the station
should enter the war. Another considera- complements. He succeeded in maintain-
tion was that some of the established ing what he considered an adequate stag-
installations available for staging purposes ing capability by emphasizing that the
were located at considerable distances determining factor was the possible peak
from the ports, whereas the port com- load and by pointing out the role that
manders found it advantageous to have these installations would have in repatri-
such facilities near to, though not within, ation and demobilization. Nevertheless,
the port areas. Plans for the construction the staging capacity was considerably re-
of staging areas were initiated late in 1941, duced as the war progressed and the pros-
and during the month following the Pearl pective need could be more clearly
Harbor attack new facilities in the vicinity foreseen.68
of New York, New Orleans, and San The ability of the staging areas to
Francisco were authorized. Later in 1942 handle peak movements naturally de-
approval was given to the construction of pended on the intensity with which the
staging facilities near Boston, Charleston, facilities were used. For a time the usual
Hampton Roads, Los Angeles, and Seattle, 66
OCT HB Monograph 8, pp. 35-44.
as well as a second large staging area near 67
Memo, CofT for Dir of Opns ASF, 11 Sep 43,
New York. Eventually staging facilities sub: St Area Reqmts; reply, 23 Sep 43; Memo,
were constructed at Portland, Oregon, and ACofT for Mob Div ASF, 10 Oct 43; Chart, St Area
Loading Forecast NYPE and BPE, Sep 43-Apr 44;
Prince Rupert, British Columbia.66 all in OCT 680-900 NY 1943.
The Chief of Transportation and his 68
Memo, Farr for McIntyre, 4 Nov 43, sub: St Area
port commanders kept the staging capa- Work Load Analysis, OCT HB Farr Staybacks;
Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 29 Jan 44, sub: Utilization
bility under constant review in the light of of Posts, Camps, and Stations, AG 323.3 Trans Gen;
projected troop movements to insure that Memo, ACofT for PEs, 24 Jun 44; Memo, CofT for
it would be adequate for the needs as they Dir Mob Div ASF, 28 Jun 44; last two in OCT HB
arose. The specially designed staging areas Meyer Staybacks; Memo, Dir Plans and Opns ASF
for CofT, 18 Aug 44, sub: Closing Certain St Areas;
were more satisfactory for staging troops 1st Ind, CofT for CG ASF, 23 Aug 44; last two in
than other Army installations, and the OCT 323.3 Utilization of Comd Facilities.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 111

allowance of sixty square feet of floor space low that figure. The exceptionally low
per enlisted man was cut to forty square average for the month of May 1944 must
feet, but this was found undesirable as a be viewed in the light of the extraordinary
permanent arrangement.69 Various means effort made at that time to get troops to
were used to avoid holding troops for ex- Europe before the invasion of the Conti-
cessive periods in the staging areas, not nent began.
only because a slow turnover reduced the The rated capacity for staging intransit
number that could be handled over a troops fluctuated greatly. These fluctu-
given period but also because it adversely ations were due to the acquisition or re-
affected morale and increased the security lease by the port commanders of staging
problem. The port commanders closely space at training camps or other stations
co-ordinated the movement of troops to not normally under the control of the port
the staging areas with troopship schedules. commanders, the construction of new bar-
Home stations were admonished to do a racks or the diversion of housing to other
more complete job of processing and train- uses, and changes in the amount of floor
ing troops so as to lighten the task of the space allotted to an individual. The largest
ports. For a time the port commanders recorded capacity for staging intransit
were required to report any units which, troops was 248,653 in May 1943. At that
because of changed priorities or other cir- time several installations that would soon
cumstances beyond their control, re- be released because of the completion of
mained at the staging areas more than new facilities were still listed as staging
forty-five days so that steps could be taken areas, and the allotment of space per en-
to have them removed.70 listed man had been reduced to forty
Early in the war when theater require- square feet. During the first seven months
ments were uncertain and priorities sub- of 1944, when the invasion of Normandy
ject to frequent change, units were was the primary military consideration,
sometimes held at the staging areas for the staging capacity averaged 224,000 and
many weeks. This situation improved dur- the peak number of troops on hand was
ing 1942, and early in 1943 the War187,000. In August 1944 the allotment of
Department instructed the port com- space per enlisted man was again placed
manders to avoid so far as possible holding at sixty square feet, and this together with
units at the staging areas more than two other adjustments reduced the rated
weeks.71 While that objective could not be capacity considerably. During the last
attained in all instances, a good measure year of the war the capacity figure fluctu-
of success was achieved. Data are not ated between 131,000 and 141,000. Dur-
available to show the over-all result, but 69
Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 7 Jan 44, OCT HB
the figures given in Table 11 for troops Wylie Staybacks; Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 29 Jan
staged by the New York Port of Embarka- 44, par. 2a, AG 323.3 Trans Gen; WD Cir 321, 3 Aug
tion during 1944 indicate that, during the 44, Sec. V.
70
Memo, AGF Comd Gp, Fort Dix, for CG ASF,
six months for which the data are avail- 20 Feb 43; 3d Ind by CG NYPE, 3 Mar 43; 8th Ind
able, well over 75 percent of the troops by CofT, 1 Apr 43; all in OCT 322 Ord Cos; TC Cir
that sailed had spent less than fourteen 50-55, 9 Oct 44, sub: Units in St Areas Over 45 Days.
71
Memo, TAG for CGs AGF, AAF, SOS, et al., 5
days at the staging areas, and that in each Jan 43, sub: Org, Tng, and Equip of Units for Over-
month of the year the average was well be- sea Sv, AG 320.2 (1-3-43).
112 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

TABLE 11TIME SPENT AT THE STAGING AREAS BY TROOPS EMBARKED AT NEW YORK
a
DURING 1944

a
Includes units and casuals staged at Camp Kilmer, Camp Shanks, Fort Slocum, and Fort Hamilton.
b
Data not available.
Source: January-June figures are from Rpt, NYPE Progress and Activities, for respective months; July-December figures submitted
with Ltr, NYPE to Mil Plng & Int Div OCT, 31 Oct 52, OCT HB NYPE St Areas Gen.

ing December 1944 and January 1945, the service commands, and an organiza-
when the outbound troop movement was tional manual was drafted on that basis.
especially heavy because of the military This sentiment was predicated on the fact
situation in Europe, the peak number of that the equipping and training of troops,
troops on hand at some staging areas ex- which were important aspects of the stag-
ceeded the rated capacity, but the excess ing process, as well as housekeeping at the
was readily absorbed. In view of these staging facilities were normal functions of
fluctuations, no month can be considered the service commands, whereas the ports
typical. Table 12 gives a spot picture of of embarkation were essentially transpor-
the staging situation in January 1945, tation agencies.
which witnessed the heaviest outbound General Gross attacked the proposal
movement of any month of the war. 72 from many angles and won General Som-
ervell's decision to leave the staging areas
The staging areas were under the com- as they were.73 The basic argument against
mand of the port commanders throughout the proposed change was the advantage of
the war, but vigorous action on the part of continuity in the control of troops from
the Chief of Transportation was necessary 72
ASF MPR, Sec. 3, gives an analysis of staging
to keep them in that status. When the each month, based on weekly reports from port com-
service commands were established in manders. 73
July 1942 as successors to the corps areas, atchdMemo, Opns Off OCT for Gross, 26 Jul 42, and
papers, OCT HB PE Gen St Area Facilities;
there was a strong sentiment in SOS head- Min of Conf of CGs SOS, 30 Jul 42, App. to record
quarters for the transfer of staging areas to of afternoon session, Question 40, OCT HB Ex Files.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 113

TABLE 12CAPACITIES OF TROOP STAGING AREAS AND INTRANSIT TROOPS STAGED:


1-28 JANUARY 1945 a

a
Table does not include a number of facilities used for staging earlier in the war.
b
Rated gross capacity based on allowance of 60 square feet per enlisted man and 120 square feet per commissioned officer in housing
in active status at end of month.
c
Rated staging capacity was gross capacity less space required for station complement, troops in training at the port, and other non-
staging purposes.
d
Total troops arrived includes 225,446 destined overseas and 32,596 returned from overseas.
e
Total troops departed includes 238,872 embarked for overseas and 34,339 shipped to stations in the zone of interior.
f
When peak number exceeded rated staging capacity, the excess was accommodated by reducing the space allowance or by using tents.
g
These were entirely new facilities. The new staging area built at New Orleans (Camp Plauch) was being used entirely for training.
The new staging area at Charleston was no longer required because that port was being used almost entirely for receiving patients from
overseas.
h
These were Regular Army installations improved or enlarged to provide staging facilities.
Source: ASF Monthly Progress Report, January 1945, Sec. 3, p. 16.

their arrival at the seaboard until they in priorities were accomplished without
had been embarked. Throughout this delay to the vessels or waste of ship space,
period the closest possible co-ordination and that organic equipment was proc-
was necessary to insure that the troops essed and shipped at the proper time. As
were fully processed by the scheduled em- long as the port commander had direct
barkation dates, that last-minute changes control of all of these operations he was in
114 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

a position to deal with problems as they clearly stated in the instructions, however,
arose through command decisions. If he that they were not independent of the
should have to negotiate with the service port commanders but were included
commanders in such matters, the direct- among the command echelons through
ness and speed of command decisions which the port commanders exercised
would be lost. Mutual understanding be- control.74
tween the officers in charge of the staging The issues at stake were not entirely
areas, the ships, and the embarkation resolved by the establishment of command
operation was necessary, and the Chief of groups. The AGF continued to express
Transportation was convinced that this dissatisfaction with the command setup,
could be best achieved if they were all although the complaints abated as the
under one command. number of units held at the staging areas
Although the port commanders' control for abnormally long periods decreased and
of the operation of the staging areas was the training facilities and methods were
thus established, uncertainty still existed improved.75 The AAF alleged that the
regarding the command of troops while command groups were being restrained
they were being staged. The AGF and the by the port commanders from communi-
AAF wanted to retain command of troops cating with their headquarters and so were
while they were at the staging areas, par- not fulfilling their purpose. As late as July
ticularly because of the training that might 1943 some staging areas had not been
have to be carried on there and the disci- provided with command groups. The
plinary problems that arose, and G-3 con- Director of Military Training, ASF, ac-
curred in this view. The Operations Divi- cordingly instructed the Chief of Trans-
sion and SOS headquarters supported the portation to take immediate measures to
view of the Chief of Transportation that insure that such groups were established
such an arrangement would create confu- in all staging areas requiring them and
sion and hamper the port commanders in that liaison between the groups and the
their task of processing the troops. The major command headquarters was not
latter view prevailed and in September obstructed.76
1942 the Chief of Staff issued appropriate The Chief of Transportation endeavored
instructions. Under these instructions all to enforce this policy, although it was not
units upon arrival in the staging areas
were to pass to the command of the port 74
Memo, ACofS OPD for CofS, 4 Sep 42, sub:
commanders and of their representatives, Comd of Units Ordered Overseas; Memo, CofS for
the commanders of the staging areas. The AGF, AAF, and SOS, 12 Sep 42, sub: Control of Units
in St Areas; both in WDCSA 370.5 (Secret); Memo,
Chief of Transportation was to establish at CG SOS for CofT, 21 Sep 42; Memo, CG AGF for
each staging area separate "small perma- Subordinate Comds, 5 Oct 42; Memo, CofT for Port
nent command groups" for the AGF, the Comdrs, 20 Oct 42; last three in OCT 370.5 Control
of Units of St Areas.
AAF, and the SOS to assist in controlling 75
Robert R. Palmer, Bell I. Wiley, and William R.
units smaller than divisions with respect Keast, The Procurement and Training of Ground Combat
to discipline, security, and training. These Troops, UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD
WAR II (Washington, 1948), pp. 573-77.
command groups were to provide liaison 76
Memo, Dir Mil Tng ASF for CofT, 21 Jul 43,
between the major command headquar- OCT HB Mvmts Div St Area Policies and Proce-
ters and the troops being staged; it was dures.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 115

popular with either his Movements Divi- When troops detrained at a staging area
sion or his port commanders. They be- they were immediately taken in charge by
lieved, on the one hand, that the staging the billeting officer. He was prepared with
area complements were able to provide a billeting plan, based on advance infor-
adequately for the training and other mation from the unit commander regard-
needs of troops during their short stay at ing the composition of the unit and a
the ports before embarkation and that the study of the housing available. In most
command groups were therefore unneces- cases enlisted men were accommodated in
sary. They found, on the other hand, that mobilization type or theater of operations
there was a tendency among the command type barracks, but in the early part of the
groups to communicate with their head- war when staging was done at permanent
quarters regarding matters that were Army installations, the use of tents some-
strictly the responsibility of the port com- times was necessary. The larger staging
manders, and that these activities resulted areas were divided for administrative pur-
in "a great deal of minor aggravation" poses into regimental areas, each of which
and some interference with the processing accommodated about 3,000 men and was
of troops." served by a billeting team. So far as pos-
The problems obviously stemmed from sible units were billeted in adjacent bar-
an overlapping of interests. The major racks, since that arrangement facilitated
commands had a natural interest in what processing and aided morale and disci-
happened to their units up to the time pline. White and Negro troops were sep-
they left the zone of interior. The port arated. Enlisted men with their personal
commanders were anxious to avoid any equipment were conducted from the train
developments that would cause confusion to their quarters by members of the billet-
or delay in the final processing of troops ing team. Under ordinary circumstances
for oversea service since this processing processing was started almost immedi-
was usually done under great pressure ately.79
and with deadlines established by convoy The processing of troops at staging areas
or ship sailing dates. The basic difficulty required attention to many details, and it
was one of establishing a clear under- was an especially onerous task because of
standing with the command groups re- the frequent failure of home stations to
garding the matters that they should take fully prepare the men for oversea service.
up directly with the port commanders and There were many reasons for such failures
those on which they should maintain liai- during the early part of the war including
son with their command headquarters. In 77
September 1945, the War Department Min of Port Comdrs Conf, New Orleans, 11-14
Jan 44, p. 62, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf;
made a final effort to clarify the situation Memo, Farr for Finlay, 19 Sep 45, sub: Lessons
by defining in detail the functions of the Learned, par. 10, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
78
groupsthen redesignated liaison sec- WD Cir 193, 16 May 44, Sec. I; WD Cir 270, 8
Sep 45, Sec. V; Memo, CG AGF for AGF Liaison Off
tionsand re-emphasizing that although SPE, 14 Sep 45, sub: WD Cir on Port Liaison Secs,
these sections were under the command of OCT HB Ex PEAGF Liaison.
79
the port commanders the liaison with their On staging area operations, see lecture by Col
Cecil L. Rutledge, comdr of Camp Kilmer, NYPE, at
respective headquarters should not be Atlantic Coast TC Off Tng Sch, undated but prob-
78
impaired. ably 1943, in OCT HB Fort Slocum Lectures.
116 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

shortages of equipment, shortages of train- fully as their personnel and facilities


ing personnel, confusion as to command would permit, the Chief of Transportation
and supply responsibilities, insufficient emphasized that the responsibility for the
time between the receipt of alert notices physical condition of troops rested pri-
and the movement dates, and failure of marily with the home stations. When he
commanding officers of units to follow the learned that some ports in their zeal to
prescribed procedures.80 Efforts to im- correct defects were giving thorough
prove the situation included issuing POM physical examinations to troops upon their
and related procedural instructions dur- arrival at the staging areas and again
ing 1943, and emphasizing the preparation shortly before embarkation, he directed
of complete and accurate unit status them to discontinue the first examination,
reports showing the condition of person- which was not required by War Depart-
nel, training, and equipment before units ment instructions and was not necessary
left home stations.81 when home stations fulfilled their respon-
The responsibility of the staging area sibilities.84
for the medical processing of troops was The port commanders were responsible
threefold. First, it was required to weed for bringing units to full strength before
out those individuals who were unfit for they left the staging areas for oversea serv-
oversea service when unfitness was dis- ice. Movement orders usually stated that
closed by the physical inspection made to all vacancies were to be filled before the
detect infectious or contagious diseases, by units left their home stations, but that fre-
the report of the individual on sick call, or quently was not accomplished.85 In addi-
by reports of commanding officers. Sec- tion, there were the vacancies caused by
ond, it was expected to provide treatment the withdrawal of men from units at the
to qualify individuals for oversea ship- staging areas for medical reasons. Not in-
ment with their units, if possible, includ- frequently enlisted men went AWOL
ing medical and surgical attention, the during the staging period and hence were
correction of dental defects, and the pro- lost to their units. In order to fill such
vision of eyeglasses. In addition, the stag- vacancies the port commanders main-
ing area completed the inoculations tained replacement pools at the staging
required for oversea service.82 areas, to which they assigned soldiers who
In September 1943 the Chief of Trans- had not been permitted to sail with their
portation reported that over a period of units because they needed medical atten-
sixteen months the average number of in- tion, returned AWOL's, and fillers who
dividuals withheld from oversea shipments had failed to arrive in time to sail with
by the port commanders because of phys- 80
Memo, TIG for CofS, 7 Dec 42, WDCSA 370.5
ical defects had been one half of one per- (Secret).
cent.83 The survey on which this report 81
Memo, ACofS OPD for AGF, AAF, and SOS, 4
was based disclosed that 10 percent of the Feb 43, WDCSA 370.5 (Secret).
82
troops required dental treatment on ar- Memo, CofT for PEs, 29 Dec 43, sub: Medical
Processing, OCT 370.5 POM 1944; TC Cir 120-3,
rival at the staging areas, and that 1 per- Changes 1, 1 Feb 44.
cent had defects that would have caused 83
Memo, CofT for Contl Div ASF, 25 Sep 43, OCT
their detention in the zone of interior un- HB Farr Staybacks.
84
Memo, CofT for PEs, 21 Mar 44, sub: Physical
less corrected. While he desired that the Exam and Insp at Ports, OCT 370.5 POM 1944.
staging areas deal with such defects as 85
See POM, pars. 9 and 30a.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 117

their units. When these replacement pools struction in fields that fell peculiarly with-
did not provide the classes of personnel in the province of the staging areas, such
required, the port commanders called on as conduct on transports and abandon-
the AGF, the AAF, and the ASF for fillers. ship procedures. Troops also were in-
In the early part of the war it was neces- structed in tactics for evasion, escape, and
sary to permit some units to sail under- resisting enemy interrogation. The Chief
strength and to dispatch fillers on subse- of Transportation objected to the inclusion
quent sailings, but as the replacement of the latter type of training in the port
pools at the ports were built up and the commanders' responsibility because he
replacement systems of the major com- believed that the staging process should
mands were improved, this became un- be lightened as much as practicable, but
necessary except on rare occasions when his objection was overruled.90
certain types of specialists were in short Probably the most troublesome part of
supply.86 processing was the completion of the in-
It was War Department policy that dividual equipment of the troops. The
troops not be sent to the staging areas staging areas normally supplied certain
until they had completed training and items, such as gas masks and impregnated
had fired the course of marksmanship pre- clothing, but by far the greater task was
scribed for the weapon with which they providing equipment that the troops
were armed.87 These requirements were should have had when they arrived. Each
not always met, however, and the defi- of the technical services maintained a staff
ciencies had to be made up at the ports. and a considerable stock of supplies at
Also, it was considered desirable to con- 86
Memo, CofT for TAG, 2 Apr 42, sub: Repl Pools
tinue active training while troops were at at PEs, OCT 320.2 Gen Trans; Memo, CofT for Mil
the staging areas as a means of preventing Pers Div ASF, 10 Apr 43, sub: PE Repl Pools, OCT
HB Farr Staybacks; WD Memo W 600-72-43, 23 Aug
deterioration of physical condition and 43, sub: Overseas Repl System; unsigned article,
morale. Training personnel and training "Classification and Assignment at a Staging Area,"
aids were provided by the port command- A.G. School Bulletin, April 1943, p. 24.
87
Memo, TAG for CGs AGF, AAF, SOS, et al., 5
ers, and when suitable arrangements Jan 43, sub: Org, Tng, and Equip of Units for Over-
could not be made for the use of firing sea Sv, par. 9, OCT 370.5 POM 1942-43; Memo, CG
ranges at nearby installations such facil- SOS for CGs SvCs and Tech Svs, 4 Mar 43, sub: Basic
Tng for SOS Units, SPX 353 (2-26-43); Min of Port
ities were constructed at the staging Comdrs Conf, New Orleans, 11-14 Jan 44, p. 60,
areas.88 OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf.
88
In March 1945, with the demand for Memo, CofT for PEs, 26 Jan 43, sub: Training
Aids; Memo, CofT for Dir Tng Div SOS, 26 Feb 43,
troops for the European theater abated, sub: Rifle Range; both in OCT HB PE Gen St Areas
the War Department increased the mini- Facilities; Memo, ACofS G-3 for CG ASF, 9 Apr 43,
mum period of training required before OCT 370.5 Contl of Units in St Areas. For the types
and extent of training at staging areas of the NYPE,
embarkation from thirteen to eighteen see monthly rpt, Progress and Activities, OCT HB
weeks. At that time the port commanders NYPE Gen.
89
were relieved of responsibility for enforc- Memo by Overseas Troop Br of Mvmts Div, 9
Mar 45, in Mvmts Div Histories for Feb 45, OCT HB
ing this requirement except in cases where Mvmts Div Gen.
troops had received their basic training at 90
Memo, G-2 for CofT, 4 May 44; 1st Ind, CofT for
89
the ports. Training activities to keep the CG ASF, 7 Jun 44; 3d Ind, CofT for G-2, 23 Jun 44;
all in OCT HB Meyer Staybacks; Memo, CG ASF for
troops in good physical and mental condi- Dir Int ASF and CofT, 12 Jul 44, OCT 370.5 POM
tion were continued, however, as was in- 1944.
118 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

TRAINING FACILITIES AT CAMP STONEMAN, staging area of the San Francisco


Port of Embarkation. Rifle range (above) and mock village for practice in street fighting (below).

each staging area; also, facilities were ceipt of requisitions. Often the interval
maintained for repairing equipment that between the alerting of a unit and its
arrived in bad condition. departure from the home station was
Some of the reasons for the failure of brief. Unit commanders, home station
home stations to provide troops with full commanders, corps area commanders,
equipment and to have it in good repair and the chiefs of the technical services all
have already been noted. Many items had responsibilities in connection with the
were in short supply, especially during the supply of troops destined for oversea areas,
early part of the war, and the depots could and co-ordination was sometimes faulty.
not make shipments promptly upon re- Unit commanders were expected to report
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 119

shortages to the technical services as soon termine how far the respective home sta-
as possible, and the technical services were tions were falling short of their responsi-
expected to report to the port command- bility. A summary, based on data for the
ers which items would be shipped to the period 15 May-31 August 1944 and list-
ports and when they would arrive. Fre- ing the home stations individually, was
quently this information was not received published by ASF in October and circu-
at the ports, but they nevertheless had to lated to all concerned with the advice that
make up all deficiencies before the troops although some improvement had been
embarked. Sometimes this was accom- achieved the situation was still far from
94
plished only by drawing heavily on the satisfactory. Similar data for the period
port reserves that were maintained to 16 September-13 December 1944 again
meet emergency requests from oversea showed improvement, but not enough to
commanders.91 indicate a satisfactory supply performance
As a result of the efforts of the responsi- at home stations. During that period
ble agencies and the Mobilization Divi- 729,060 troops arrived at the staging areas
sion in ASF headquarters, there was whose authorized supplies and personal
gradual improvement in the equipping of equipment included 42,304,956 items, ex-
troops at home stations. The Chief of cluding those that were normally supplied
Transportation employed various meas- at the ports. The summary showed that
ures to secure this improvement. Early in 2,325,056 (5.5 percent) of these items were
the war he directed his port commanders missing and that 1,248,068 (2.9 percent)
to set up co-ordinating agencies at the were not in order for combat service. The
staging areas for the specific purpose of total deficiency therefore was 8.4 per-
maintaining close liaison with the unit cent.95
commanders and the chiefs of technical At one time during the period when
services on supply matters. 92 He also 91
urged that the commanders of home sta- Memo, Somervell for Lutes, 17 May 42, ASF Hq
Opns Div 1942-43; Memo, Wylie for Gross, 9 Oct 42,
tions be held responsible for positive sub: Supply of Troops Going Overseas; 1st Ind, Lutes
action to insure that unit commanders for CofT, 4 Dec 42; Memo, CofT for PEs, 11 Dec 42,
gave proper attention to the equipment of sub: List of Items Shipped to Ports; Interv with Col
Farr, 4 Sep 46, sub: Troop Mvmts, p. 5; last four in
their troops, since the former had an op- OCT HB PE Gen St Area Procedures; Memo, CofT
portunity to learn from experience where- for ACofS for Opns SOS, 14 Dec 42, sub: Task Force
as the latter prepared for oversea move- Shortages, OCT 400.61 Shortages 1943.
92
Memo, CofT for CG NYPE, 12 Aug 42, sub:
ment only once.93 A provision to that Rpts on Status of Equip; Memo, CG ASF for Cs of
effect was included in the second edition Tech Svs, 3 Oct 42, sub: Supply of Troops at PE; both
of POM, which was issued in August in OCT HB PE Gen St Area Procedures.
93
5th Ind, CofT for CG SOS, 4 Nov 42; Memo,
1943. CofT for DCofS for SvCs ASF, 31 Jul 43; both in OCT
When the situation did not improve as HB Mvmts Div St Area Policies.
94
rapidly as he had hoped, the Chief of Memo, Lutes for Dir Plans and Opns ASF, 19
Jul 44, ASF Hq Dir of Plans and Opns; Memo, CG
Transportation in conjunction with The ASF for Home Sta Comdrs and Agencies Issuing
Inspector General established a procedure Mvmt Orders, 31 Oct 44, sub: Processing Defi-
for reporting and tabulating the items of ciencies of Troops at St Areas, OCT 370.5 POM 1944.
95
Extract from Memo, TIG for DCofS, 8 Jan 45,
clothing and other equipment issued to sub: Readiness of Units for Mvmt Overseas, OCT
soldiers at the staging areas in order to de- 370.5 Processing Deficiencies 1945.
120 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

constant pressure was being exerted to ices ceased shipping noncontrolled sup-
have troops provided with full equipment plies to the ports earmarked for particular
before they started for the staging areas, a units. The unit commanders conducted
strong sentiment developed for eliminat- the final showdown inspections at the
ing the showdown inspection at home sta- staging areas and informed the port com-
tions and placing the responsibility for manders what items were needed to fill
this inspection, as well as for making up shortages and replace unserviceable
the shortages that it disclosed, solely on equipment. The port commanders pro-
the ports of embarkation. Representatives vided these items so far as possible by
of the service commands attending a withdrawals from their own stocks or by
meeting held in November 1943 made a calling on nearby depots. Requisitions for
definite recommendation to that effect, items not supplied before the sailing date
pointing out the difficulties that home sta- were canceled, and the unit commanders
tions and technical services were experi- submitted new requisitions for these items
encing in carrying out the existing regula- after arrival in the theaters. 97 Controlled
tion and the advantages that would accrue itemsthose supplied in accordance with
from concentrating the responsibility at the priorities assigned to the respective
the ports. The Chief of Transportation troop unitscontinued to be shipped to
was willing to assume the added burden, home stations or ports according to the
but he indicated that it would involve a circumstances.
substantial increase in personnel and In addition to the larger tasks of over-
warehouse space at the staging areas. The coming deficiencies in personnel, training,
proposal was therefore dropped.96 and equipment, the staging areas had
Despite the showdown inspections at many other responsibilities in connection
home stations, the port commanders held with the final preparation of troops for de-
similar inspections as soon as possible after parture overseas. Assistance was given in
the troops arrived at the staging areas in handling such personal matters as insur-
order to establish definitely what items ance, pay allotments, purchase of savings
were missing and what were in bad condi- bonds, taxes, wills, powers of attorney,
tion. The soldiers spread out their per- and various aspects of domestic relations.
sonal equipment before an inspection Service records were checked and brought
team, usually in their barracks, and the up to date. Payrolls were prepared and
members of the team immediately took wages were paid in full unless already
98
steps to correct the deficiencies. Late in paid as of the last payday. Considerable
the war, with supplies more readily pro- 96
curable by home stations and with larger Memo, Dir of Supply ASF for Dir of Plans and
Opns ASF, 13 Nov 43, sub: Suggested Revision of
stocks on hand at oversea bases, a revision POM; Memo, CofT for Brig Gen Frank A. Heileman,
of the procedure for noncontrolled items Dir of Supply ASF, 30 Jan 44, sub: T/E 21 Show-
became possible. The change was made down Inspection; both in OCT 370.5 POM 1944.
97
See Memos, CofT for PEs, 22 Nov 44 and 23 Feb
late in 1944 and was incorporated in the 45, sub: Proposed Supply Procedure, OCT 370.5
third edition of POM, issued in February POM.
98
1945. The port commanders no longer Uncertainty as to the necessity of and the port's
responsibility for seeing that troops received their pay
were responsible for conducting show- before sailing was removed by WD Cir 106, 4 Apr 45,
down inspections, and the technical serv- Sec. III, and TC Cir 50-57, 10 Apr 45.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 121

attention was given to "special service" The Chief of Transportation wanted these
activities, which included athletics, theat- messes to provide "the best food in the
ricals, motion pictures, concerts, libraries, Army," but he found that in some in-
and clubs for the entertainment of the sol- stances they fell far short of that ideal.
dier, and lectures and discussions for his Early in 1944 he arranged for the assign-
orientation to the life that lay ahead. Each ment of a food service specialist from the
of the larger staging areas published a Quartermaster Corps to aid him in cor-
newspaper devoted chiefly to news of the recting deficiencies by making regular
camp. The division of responsibility be- inspections and recommending improve-
tween the port commanders and the serv- ments. The aim was to have the messes
ice commanders led to misunderstanding operated entirely by the staging area com-
and delay in providing facilities for spe- plements, and port commanders were
cial service activities at certain ports, but under instruction to assign transient troops
a vigorous directive from General Somer- to mess details only in emergencies.101
vell and a close follow-up by the Chief of
Transportation corrected this situation." The processing of replacements was
Other aspects of the staging operation similar to the processing of troop units, al-
were given close attention because of their though it differed in some respects. In
bearing on morale. The staging period 1943 the growth in demand for replace-
was a trying one for many soldiers, par- ments for the active theaters necessitated
ticularly those with family responsibilities. a clear definition of the oversea replace-
102
Much depended on the condition of the ment system. Replacement training
unit when it arrived and the character of centers were established by the AGF, the
its leadership, but in any case the staging AAF, and the ASF, and these commands
area had an important role in keeping the also set up replacement depots near the
soldiers' spirits up and holding disciplin- seaboard where replacement troops were
ary problems down. received for classification, checking of
With this in mind, the Chief of Trans- 99
ASF Cir 77, 14 Sep 43, Sec. IV; Memo, Somer-
portation insisted that the staging instal- vell for Gross, 15 Jun 43, with Ind, Gross to NYPE,
lations be kept clean and operated in an OCT HB Gross St Areas; Ltr, Farr for Col James K.
Herbert, GO LAPE, 20 Feb 45, Oct HB Farr Stay-
orderly and efficient manner. In line with backs; Remarks by Gen Groninger, CG NYPE, in
this policy, he directed late in 1943 that Min of Port Comdrs Conf, Boston, 30 Aug-1 Sep 43,
the commanding officer at Camp Patrick p. 39, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf.
100
Ltr, Gross to Brig Gen John R. Kilpatrick, CG
Henry, staging area of the Hampton HRPE, 21 Dec 43, and related documents, in OCT
Roads Port of Embarkation, be relieved, HB Gross St Areas. On the general subject see other
although he conceded that that officer documents in this file; also ASF Staff Conf, 25 May
43, p. 2.
had been handicapped by physical condi- 101
Min of Port Comdrs Conf, New Orleans, 11-14
tions at the camp and too close supervi- Jan 44, pp. 93-94, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs
sion by the port commander. An officer Conf; TC Cir 120-3, 1 Jan 44, Sec. III; Memo,
ACofT for CG NOPE, 22 Jan 45, OCT HB Wylie
who had proved his qualification at Staybacks.
another staging area was assigned to the 102
WD Memo W 600-31-43, 26 Mar 43, sub: Over-
post.100 sea Repl System; WD Memo W 600-72-43, 23 Aug
43, same sub. For a general discussion of the replace-
Constant attention was given to staging- ment system, see Palmer, Wiley, and Keast, op. cit.,
area messes as factors affecting morale. pp.169-239.
STAGING AREA RECREATIONAL FACILITIES for New York Port of Embarka-
tion. An entertainment program is presented at the amphitheater, Camp Kilmer, New Jersey
(above); the library at Camb Shanks. New York (below).
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 123

qualifications, and formation into casual the staging areas of much of the processing
detachments or companies for shipment that would have been necessary if the
103
overseas. While the replacement system troops had moved directly from replace-
was being developed, the question arose ment training centers to the ports. In some
whether replacement depots could be lo- instances, when requests for replacements
cated at the ports as had been the case received from overseas commanders called
during peacetime. The Chief of Transpor- for quick dispatch, the port commanders
tation opposed any such plan because he sent processing teams to the replacement
foresaw that the movement of replace- depots to aid in the preparation of the
ments would be heavy and that all avail- troops so that they could be moved to
able facilities at the staging areas would shipside without passing through the stag-
107
be needed for the regular staging oper- ing areas.
ation.104 Although the replacement depots
were responsible for the full processing of The problems of maintaining secrecy in
replacement troops, the port commanders troop movements was intensified while the
nevertheless were required to make up troops were at the staging areas. The
any deficiencies that existed when the troops knew that they were on their way
troops reached the staging areas.105 overseas and speculation was rife regard-
The casual detachments or companies ing sailing dates and destinations. Some-
formed by the commanders of replace- times details from secret orders were care-
ment depots were placed under the com- lessly allowed to get into the hands of
mand and supervision of commissioned persons who were not authorized to re-
and noncommissioned officer replace- ceive such information. Many measures
ments who were part of the same ship- were employed to make soldiers realize
ment. This command arrangement con- the importance of not giving out informa-
tinued while the troops were at the stag- tion that might be of value to the enemy,
ing areas and until they arrived at their but complete censorship could not be im-
oversea destinations. The staging areas posed. Because of the effect on morale, it
found that casual officers sometimes felt was not considered advisable to hold
little responsibility for control of the men troops incommunicado between the time
under them, thus throwing an unusual
103
burden of administration and discipline WD Memo W 600-35-43, 12 Apr 43, sub: Opn
of ZI Pers Repl Depots; Changes 1, 11 May 43;
on the staging area personnel. To rectify Changes 2, 7 Sep 43.
this situation, the War Department stipu- 104
Min of Port Comdrs Conf, Boston, 30 Aug-1 Sep
lated that when shipments of replace- 43, pp. 232-33, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf.
105
ments numbered more than 200 enlisted Memo, CG ASF for CofT, 9 Aug 43, OCT HB
Farr Staybacks; POR, 1 Oct 43, par. 3b.
men, the commanders of replacement 106
Memo, CofT for Mil Pers Div ASF, 18 Sep 43,
depots would assign officers from their sta- OCT 322 Activation of Units; Memo, TAG for AGF,
tion complements to act as escorts for the 27 Sep 43, sub: Org of Casuals Prior to Staging, AG
320.2 (18 Sep 43); Wd Memo W 600-72-43, Changes
shipments and assist with the processing 2, 12 Nov 43; WD Cir 317,31 Jul 44, par. 6.
107
and administration of the troops through- 2d Ind. CofT for CG NYPE, 9 Sep 43, OCT HB
out the journey overseas.106 Farr Staybacks; Min of Port and Zone Comdrs Conf,
Chicago, 6-9 Jul 44, Mtg of Port Opn, Troop Mvmt,
Although they did not always complete and Equip Representatives, 8 Jul 44, p. 13, OCT HB
the job, the replacement depots relieved PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf.
124 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

of their arrival at the staging area and the quate officer supervision of troops being
108
date they were alerted for embarkation. staged was to be assured at all times.
Yet their conversation in public places, Daily inspections were to be made and
their local and long-distance telephone any evidences of racial tension promptly
calls, their letters to friends and families, reported. The commanding officers of
and the visits of friends to the staging in- staging areas were to go immediately to
stallations furnished constant opportunity the scene of any serious disorder and per-
for the leakage of information on the time sonally take charge of the effort to quell it.
and direction of prospective movements. Immediate and thorough investigations
Information in the hands of the station were to be made to apprehend the in-
complements at the staging areas, which stigators and the participants, and appro-
included both military and civilian per- priate disciplinary action was to be taken
sonnel, also had to be guarded. The many against such persons "without exception."
aspects of this problem commanded the These measures were effective, and no fur-
constant attention of the intelligence ther disturbances of consequence occurred
112
officers at the ports, the Intelligence and at the staging areas during the war.
Security Division of the Office of the Chief
of Transportation, The Inspector General, The port commanders made regular re-
and G-2 of the General Staff.109 ports to the Chief of Transportation on
staging area operations, and they in turn
The emotional state of troops about to 108
Memo, CofT for PEs, 3 Nov 42, sub: Measures
move overseas was conducive to irrespon- for Enforcing Secrecy, OCT HB PE Gen St Area
sible acts and disorder. Group disturb- Procedures.
109
ances were most likely to involve Negro The extent of the problem is indicated in the fol-
lowing: Memo, G-2 WDGS for Int Br OCT, 5 Feb
troops since Negroes comprised the larg- 43, sub: Revealing Mil Info, and inds, OCT 370.5
est group subject to racial tensions.110 Al- Secrecy; Memo, CO Camp Myles Standish for CG
though the Chief of Transportation tried BPE, 28 Oct 43, sub: Censorship Violations at St
to forestall trouble by insisting that there Area, OCT 000.900 Camp Myles Standish 1943;
Memo, CG ASF for CofT, 6 Mar 44, sub: Censorship
be no discrimination between races in the Instructions at St Areas, and atchd SOP for Censor-
assignment of barracks, mess halls, and ship Contl Off at St Areas; Rpt of Base Censorship at
recreation facilities, the possibility of dis- PEs, source not shown, for weeks in late 1943 and
early 1944; last two in OCT 000.73, 1943-45; Memo,
order was always present. Contributing CO Camp Myles Standish for CofT, 14 Oct 44, sub:
causes were lack of leadership on the part Violations of Security, OCT 000.72 TC Misc.
110
of some unit commanders and the limited On the general question of disturbances involv-
ing Negroes, see Lee, The Employment of Negro
number of military police available. Fol- Troops in World War II, Chs. XIV, XV.
lowing two disturbances that occurred at 111
Lack of preparation and alertness at Fort
staging areas in 1944one at Fort Law- Lawton were indicated in Memo, Asst IG SPE for CG
SPE, 28 Aug 44, sub: Prelim Rpt on Negro-Italian
ton, Washington, and the other at Camp Riot, 14 Aug 44, and later rpts; 2d Ind, CofT for CG
Patrick Henry, VirginiaGeneral Gross SPE, 7 Nov 44; all in OCT 291.2 Ft Lawton; for
instituted special measures for preventing resulting directive see Memo, CofT for Port Comdrs,
16 Nov 44, sub: Handling of Racial Disturbances,
and handling such situations.111 He em- OCT HB Ex Staybacks.
phasized that the port commanders and 112
The nature of the problems and the measures
staging area commanders had primary adopted at Camp Kilmer are illustrated in Rpt, Spe-
cial Committee to CG ASF, 12 Jan 45, sub: Insp of
responsibility, and that they could not Facilities for and Problems Relating to Negro Pers,
delegate that responsibility to others. Ade- OCT 331.1 Camp Kilmer.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 125

obtained the reactions of the commanders the one hand by the emphasis that his
of units being staged. In the fall of 1944 superiors placed on the importance of the
the Chief of Transportation directed that activity, and on the other hand by the
a report be obtained from each unit com- close attention that the port commanders
mander just before he sailed. For this pur- gave the subject.
pose a single-page form was provided, on
which the unit commander was to place a Embarkation Procedures
check opposite each of the listed activities
to indicate whether he considered the per- Preparation for embarkation began at
formance excellent, satisfactory, or un- the staging area twenty-four to seventy-
satisfactory.113 Although it was recognized two hours in advance of the troops' de-
that this report would give the impressions parture. This preparation involved co-
of an officer who had witnessed only a ordination between the Troop Movement
small part of the staging operation and Division of the port, staging area officials,
had little knowledge of the conditions and the commanders of the units or casual
under which that operation was carried groups involved. It included the formula-
out, the Chief of Transportation believed tion of a detailed plan covering the move-
that a comparison of the reports would ments of the troops from the time they
provide a useful guide in working out fur- left the staging area until they had been
ther improvements in personnel, facilities, installed in their quarters on the ship. The
and procedures. The Chief of Transporta- passenger list, initially prepared at the
tion sent a chart summarizing the reports staging area with names arranged alpha-
pertaining to each staging area to each betically, was the key document. From it
port commander monthly.114 Although groups were set up and schedules were
some unit commanders indicated that established for transporting the troops to
they considered certain activities unsatis- the pier and for embarking and billeting
factory, the preponderance of checks in them. The usual practice was to chalk on
the "excellent" and "satisfactory" col- the soldier's helmet the number that ap-
umns brought a strong commendation peared opposite his name on the passenger
from General Somervell for the over-all list. This was done as soon as the unit was
success of the staging operation.115 alerted and the number indicated his
This was the judgment on staging areas place in all movements that took place
late in the war. Earlier there had been fre- subsequently. While the bulk of the troops
quent and sometimes severe criticism, and and their TAT (to accompany troops)
the Chief of Transportation had been well equipment were being organized for em-
aware of the need for improvement not 113
only in the mechanics of staging but also TC Cir 50-55, 9 Oct 44, sub: Units in St Areas
Over 45 Days; OCT Misc Ltr 14, 13 Jan 45, sub: Unit
in maintaining morale and discipline.116 Comdrs Rpt, OCT HB PE Gen St Area Procedures.
The complexity of the staging operation, Completed reports filed under OCT 370.5 grouped by
the mental state of the troops, and the staging areas.
114
See Memo, CofT for CG SPE, 30 May 45, and
pressure under which staging usually was incl, OCT 319.1 Ft Lawton.
done combined to make this phase of the 115
Ltr, Gross to Kilpatrick, CG HRPE, 5 Sep 45,
transportation task an especially difficult OCT HB Gross Day File.
116
See Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 20 Jan 44, sub:
one. In his efforts toward improvement Current and Anticipated Problems, problems 16 and
the Chief of Transportation was aided on 17, OCT 319.1.
126 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

INDIVIDUAL EQUIPMENT READY TO BE CARRIED by soldiers en route to


the San Francisco Port of Embarkation, May 1942.

barkation, an advance party was already inate from the A bag any equipment that
on the ship preparing for their arrival. would not be required during the voyage,
This party included a loading detail, a but the tendency among enlisted men was
guard detail, a mess detail, and a medical to put as much as possible in the A bag,
detail.117 and they often encumbered themselves
Although organizational equipment further with musical instruments and
was shipped separately, the soldier was other personal possessions. Many officers
accompanied on his journey overseas by complained about the heavy burden the
his individual equipment, the greater part men had to carry whenever they moved
of which was placed in two barracks bags. and about the congestion that the A bags
Usually the "A" bag remained in his pos- created in the limited sleeping quarters
session throughout the voyage, while the 117
Considerable information used in this section
"B" bag was stowed in the ship's baggage has been taken from an address, "Troop Movement
or cargo spaces. In addition to the A bag, Embarkation," by Lt. Col. Leo J. Meyer, Troop
Movement Officer, NYPE, at the Atlantic Coast TC
the soldier carried his weapon, helmet, gas Officers Training School, Fort Slocum, N.Y., during
mask, and packall together a heavy load. the spring of 1943, filed in OCT HB Fort Slocum Lec-
When barracks bags were inspected at the tures. Although practices differed somewhat at the
different ports, they followed the same general
staging areas an effort was made to elim- pattern.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 127

on the troopships, but no substantial re- short pause while units that had arrived
duction was made in the load. The bar- earlier were being checked at the gang-
racks bag was redesigned during the war way. During this interval refreshments
with the intention of making it more man- were served by Red Cross workers. When
ageable. There were differences of opin- a unit's turn came, the troops approached
ion, however, as to whether the new bag the embarkation desk in single file and in
was an improvement over the old one passenger-list order. In addition to the
from that standpoint. In some instances, personnel team, which was present to
when conditions at the oversea port of de- check the men against the passenger list
barkation were favorable, both barracks and the service records, the unit com-
bags were stowed in the ship's hold and mander or some other officer was there to
the soldier carried something similar to a identify each individual. When a soldier's
small laundry bag, but this was not a gen- name was called, he responded, received
118
eral practice. his compartment number, and immedi-
The movement from the staging area to ately boarded the ship. When no one re-
the pier was arranged by the port trans- sponded to the name read, that name was
portation officer. The Traffic Control scratched from the passenger list and the
Division in the Office of the Chief of corresponding service record was with-
Transportation did not undertake to route drawn. Steps then were taken to account
this traffic when it involved only a short for the individual's absence, and the in-
haul between two stations under the same formation obtained was entered on the list
port commander. The movement was and the record. Usually absences were due
made by rail, motor, or small boat accord- to late withdrawals of men from units on
ing to the circumstances, and sometimes account of physical or mental illness. Al-
by a combination of carriers. At New though the number of men who went
York, troops leaving Camp Kilmer or AWOL while at the staging area consti-
Camp Shanks usually were transported tuted a considerable problem, there was
by rail to Jersey City, where they were little opportunity for this to occur after the
transferred to ferry boats that discharged unit had been alerted for embarkation.
them at the river end of the pier where the Company grade officers usually followed
transport was docked. Late in the war the their men into the ship immediately so as
San Francisco Port of Embarkation ex- to observe their billeting. Field grade
perimented with docking a Liberty ship officers usually went aboard later.
at Camp Stoneman and embarking troops The entire embarkation program was
there, but this did not become a practice timed so as to move the troops through
because of navigational difficulties.119 The one phase to another with as little delay as
location of most staging areas rendered possible. As experience was gained the
this procedure either impossible or im- ports succeeded in executing embarka-
practicable. Throughout the journey from tions with remarkable precision. This pre-
the staging area to the transport the troops 118
Remarks by Col Robert R. Litehiser at Mtg of
remained in passenger-list order, accord- Port Opn, Troop Mvmt, and Equip Representatives,
ing to the numbers on their helmets. 8 Jul 44, in Min of Port and Zone Conf, OCT HB PE
Gen Port Comdrs Conf.
The same order was maintained after 119
Ltr, SFPE to author, 9 Feb 51, OCT HB SFPE
arrival at the pier. Generally there was a Camp Stoneman.
128 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

ARMY NURSES ENTRAINING AT CAMP KILMER for the New York Port of Embarkation.

cision was especially necessary in moving gangway. When the U.S. Army began
troops along the pier and into the ship, using the Queens for moving troops to
because they all passed over one or two England in 1942, the embarkations were
gangways and there was a consequent slowed by differences in British and Amer-
threat of congestion in the narrow pas- ican practices, but these differences were
sageways on the vessel. The danger that soon adjusted through close co-operation
this last phase of embarkation might be- between representatives of the British
come a bottleneck was reduced by careful Ministry of War Transport in New York
scheduling and by thorough instruction of and the New York Port of Embarkation.120
the loading and the guard details, which As soon as embarking troops crossed the
had arrived in advance of the troops. In gangway they were taken in charge by
the case of the British troopships Queen members of the loading detail and guided
Mary and Queen Elizabeth, which some- to their quarters.121 Upon arrival at his
times embarked as many as 15,000 sol- compartment the soldier was instructed to
diers on a single voyage, the loading was 120
Interv with Lt Col Leo J. Meyer, 31 Jan 51,
accomplished in as little as five hours from OCT HB PE Gen Troop Embarkations.
121
the time of arrival of the first troops at the For instructions to loading officers, see Ship's
Regulations, USAT George Washington, 25 Jun 43,
pier to the passing of the last man over the par. 17, OCT 232-900 George Washington.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 129

TROOPS LEAVING CAMP MYLES STANDISH for the Boston Port of Embarkation.

arrange his equipment as snugly as possi- and was checked with the actual accom-
ble in the limited space assigned to him modations after the ship arrived in port.122
and then to get into his bunk and remain Since this plan was co-ordinated with the
there until announcement was made that transportation plan under which the
the embarkation had been completed. troops were moved from staging area to
Usually the men were glad to avail them- shipside, last minute changes in billeting
selves of the opportunity to rest, and this were kept to a minimum. In billeting en-
was particularly true when embarkations listed men the basic objective was to keep
were made late at night. Such movements units together, since that arrangement
as were necessary were closely controlled aided the exercise of command and the
by the guard detail. These controls were control of movement. To the same end
necessary because, if the troops already on noncommissioned officers were billeted
board had been permitted to move about, with the enlisted men, and commissioned
the billeting of those arriving later in the officers of company grade were placed in
crowded compartments would have been 122
impeded. WD FM 55-105, Water Trans, Ocean-going
Vessels, 25 Sep 44, p. 43. The billeting plan for the
The billeting plan was worked out in large British transports was worked out in conjunction
advance by the port's embarkation staff with representatives of the BMWT and the master.
130 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

staterooms as near their men as possi- available for recreation and other activi-
ble.123 Officers normally were assigned to ties.127 In all cases the total number of
staterooms by the port commanders in ac- passengers and crewmen was kept within
cordance with their military rank. An the capacity of the lifesaving equipment,
AAF proposal that length of combat serv- and the ports complied with other rules
ice also be considered in making such pertaining to the safety of passengers
assignments was rejected by the Chief of established by the Navy and the Coast
Transportation as "impracticable." 124 Guard.128
The transport commander was author- Overloading is necessary when large
ized to consider complaints regarding forces must be moved overseas because the
billeting and to take corrective action normal shipping capacity does not equal
when the objections were valid and the emergency requirements. It is un-
changes were possible. Such complaints avoidable in wartime and when properly
were inevitable despite the care generally controlled does not impose a serious hard-
used in preparing the billeting plan, and ship on the soldiers.129 The Transportation
the plan was not always above criticism.125 123
The tactful transport commander usually Memo, CofT for CG NYPE, 18 Jul 42, sub: Rpt
of Investigation, Queen Elizabeth, OCT HB Meyer
could appease dissatisfied officers by ar- Staybacks; Memo, CofT for PEs, 27 Dec 43, sub:
ranging an exchange of accommodations Combat Crews, OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
124
or explaining why this could not be done. Memo, CofT for CG AAF, 19 Aug 44, sub:
Treatment of Crew Pers Returning from ETO, OCT
On a heavily booked transport changes in HB Farr Staybacks.
the berthing of enlisted men were virtually 125
To illustrate, see Memo, British Army Staff for
impossible. WD, 10 Jul 43, and CofT's reply, 20 Jul 43, sub:
Asgmt of Off; both in OCT 524-541.1 N.Y.; Memo,
The number of troops placed on a Col M. Cordero for TAG, 19 Oct 44, and Memo,
transport depended on the facilities that CofT for CO LAPE, 10 Apr 45, sub: Shipt 2086; both
the vessel provided, the urgency of over- in OCT 333.7 General A. F. Anderson.
126
Memo, Mvmts Div for Water Div OCT, 17 May
sea requirements, the season, and the 43, sub: Capacity of Troopships, OCT HB Farr Stay-
length of the voyage. Three capacities backs; TC Cir 80-12, 22 Jan 44, sub: Capacity of Pers
were established for each vesselnormal Transports, and atchd OCT Form 46, OCT HB PE
Gen Transport Capacity.
load, overload, and maximum load.126 127
Ltr, Farr to author, 14 Feb 50, OCT HB Mvmts
The normal load was reckoned from the Div Gen. The first double bunking in World War II
number of berths normally available. was on the Siboney, the Thomas H. Barry, and the
Overloading required that two men use Arthur Murray, which sailed from the NYPE for the
United Kingdom on 31 May 1942; Memo, Opns Off
the same bunk alternately, and might in- for Water Div OCT, 15 May 42, sub: Increased Troop
volve the installation of additional tempo- Capacities; Memo, CofT for CG NYPE, 20 May 42;
rary bunks. Maximum loading was over- Memo, Col Claude E. Stadtman for CG NYPE, 9 Jun
42, sub: Overloading of Siboney; last three in OCT HB
loading carried to the practicable limit. Meyer Staybacks; Rpt, 11 Jun 42, by Lt Col Peter C.
The assignment of two soldiers to the same Hains, CO of Troops, Thomas H. Barry, OCT HB PE
bunkgenerally referred to as double Gen Troop Embarkation.
128
Memo, CofT for PEs, 17 Aug 42, sub: Maximum
bunkingdid not mean that twice the Allowable Number of Passengers, and atchd Memo,
normal load could be carried, for the max- DCofS US Fleet for Dir Convoy and Routing Sec
imum load was usually determined by the USN, 15 Aug 42, sub: Limitations on Number of
Passengers, OCT 541.1 Small Groups.
capacity of the messing facilities or by the 129
Memo, TIG for CofS, 9 Sep 42, sub: Overseas
extent of the deck spaces and public rooms Mvmts, WDCSA 370.5 (Secret).
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 131

Corps adapted the practice to the various that could be substituted in such contin-
types of vessels, recognizing that some of gencies, but this was not always the case.
them were more suitable for overloading A ship sailing to several oversea ports with
than others. It took cognizance of the fact small numbers of troops to be delivered at
that soldiers could endure conditions on each might sail with some of its bunks un-
the shorter and cooler North Atlantic voy- occupied. Cargo vessels, with limited pas-
ages that would become intolerable in the senger capacities, often were destined for
tropics or on the long transpacific routes. ports where no troops were needed. A
Cold or stormy weather, which made it study of 187 ships that sailed from Ameri-
impossible to quarter troops on the decks, can ports under Army auspices in May
necessitated limiting the load to the num- 1944 produced some interesting data.
ber that could be properly accommodated These data must be viewed with some
within the superstructure and below deck, reservations because of the short period
where the capacity of the ventilating sys- covered and the elasticity of the rated ca-
tem often was a limiting factor. pacitiesit must be assumed that normal
From a medical standpoint it was pref- capacities are referred tobut they never-
erable to limit troopship loads during the theless are significant. The troopships
winter months to the normal capacity, with spaces for more than 2,000 men were
but such a policy could not be applied loaded to 99 percent of capacity. Vessels
uniformly since it would have seriously re- capable of carrying not over 500 pas-
tarded the build-up of military strength sengers were loaded to only 49 percent of
overseas.130 When the demand for troops capacity. Taking the group as a whole, the
in the European theater eased somewhat loading was 88 percent of capacity.132
during the late winter of 1944-45, the
Chief of Transportation authorized the Secrecy with regard to troop embarka-
port commanders to avoid overloading so tions obviously was necessary, but there
far as possible and to distribute the troops were different opinions as to the measures
to be moved among the scheduled vessels required to insure it. Some aspects of se-
in such a way as to obtain maximum curity pertaining to troops en route to the
comfort.131 During the summer and fall of ports and at the staging areas have
1945 overloading was again resorted to as already been mentioned.133 The primary
a means of redeploying and repatriating purpose of secrecy was to avoid disclosing
troops as rapidly as possible. sailing dates and unit designations. Dur-
Since troopship capacity usually was ing the early months of the war instruc-
less than the military authorities desired, tions were issued to insure that information
every effort was made to see that ships did pertaining to prospective troop move-
not sail with empty passenger spaces, but ments and ship sailings was restricted to
full loading could not be uniformly ac- the smallest practical numbers of persons,
complished. Late changes in priorities and 130
Memo, Port Surgeon for CG HRPE, 13 Dec 43,
the failure of some troops to arrive at the sub: Overloads in Winter; 1st Ind, CG HRPE for
ports sufficiently early were among the CofT, 14 Dec 43; both in OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
131
reasons for allowing ships to sail with Msg, CofT for CGs NYPE and BPE, 13 Mar
45, OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
empty passenger spaces. The port com- 132
ASF MPR, Jul 44, Sec. 3, p. 44.
manders frequently had troops on hand 133
See above, pp. 123-24.
132 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

both in the War Department and at the kations.139 The Inspector General was di-
ports.134 Some months later the Chief of rected to investigate the matter and his
Transportation announced that it would conclusion was that the use of bands and
be standard operating procedure at all Red Cross activities did not constitute a
ports for embarkation to take place under breach of security. 140 General Marshall
cover of darkness.135 But provision was then reported to the CCS that the presence
made for exceptions and the exceptions of the press at the embarkation that gave
were numerous, since it was recognized rise to the British protest had been a
that nighttime embarkation had limited special occasion arranged by the Acting
security value. Moreover, many ships that Secretary of War and that newspaper
were loaded at night sailed in broad stories had not been published until after
daylight. the ship had reached its oversea destina-
The Army regulation on security of in- tion. General Marshall further stated that
formation effective in 1942 provided for the use of bands and the admission of Red
the exclusion of persons not having official Cross workers to the piers would be con-
business from the piers and forbade the tinued but that they would be strictly con-
playing of bands at embarkations. In trolled. 141 This was the policy followed for
April 1943 the latter prohibition was with- the remainder of the war.
drawn and port commanders were per- Not all port commanders were agreed
mitted to use bands when they believed on the practical value of dispensing food
security would not be jeopardized. 136 on the piers, but the majority favored the
There was sharp difference of opinion in practice. 142 There was general agreement
the War Department on the application among them regarding the value of bands,
of security rules to the use of bands and which they believed not only buoyed the
Red Cross personnel. The Chief of Trans-
134
portation believed that to have a band Memo, ACofS G-4 for CofS, 11 Feb 42, sub:
Dissemination of Info; Memos, C of Trans Br G-4 for
playing while troops were entraining at PEs, 14 and 25 Feb 42; all in G-4/29717-118.
the staging areas and while they were em- 135
Memo, CofT for PEs, 1 May 42, sub: Security
barking at the ports was an excellent and Secrecy Measures, OCT 000.72.
136
AR 380-5, 28 Sep 42, par. 65a and b, and
means of bolstering morale. 137 He also Changes 10, 20 Apr 43.
favored permitting members of the Ameri- 137
Memo, CofT for Col Fremont B. Hodson and
can Red Cross to distribute food to troops other officers of OCT, 3 Oct 42, OCT HB Gross Day
while they were on the piers waiting to File.
138
Memo, ACofS G-1 for CofS, 12 Apr 43, sub: Use
embark. These views were concurred in of Bands, WDCSA 370.5 (Secret); Memo, G-2 for CG
by General Somervell, OPD, and G-1, but ASF, 16 Jul 43, sub: Activities at PEs, CCS 3 7 1 . 2
G-2 took an opposite stand.138 (7-8-43).
139
CCS 273, 8 Jul 43; CCS 273/1, 28 Jul 43.
The matter came to a head in the sum- 140
Memo, TIG for CG ASF, 21 Jul 43, sub: Secu-
mer of 1943, when the British Chiefs of rity Arrangements During Emb, ASF Hq Somervell
Staff entered a protest with the Combined File 1943.
141
CCS 105th Mtg, 6 Aug 43, Item 8; Memo, CofT
Chiefs of Staff against bands and Red for CG ASF, 11 Aug 43, OCT 370.5 Agencies at
Cross activities on the piers so far as Ports; Memo, CofT for PEs, 7 Oct 43, OCT HB Farr
they affected the larger British vessels, Staybacks.
142
Min of Port Comdrs Conf, New Orleans, 11-14
and also against the admission of press Jan 44, pp. 90-91, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs
representatives to the piers during embar- Conf.
NIGHT EMBARKATION. Troops are checked with the passenger list at the embarkation
desk (above), and file over the gangway in numerical order (below).
134 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

RED CROSS WORKERS WAVING TO TROOPS aboard an Army transport leaving


the Boston Port of Embarkation.

morale of the troops but helped the em- also showed the control status of each
barkation officers to keep them in proper shipthat is, whether it was under con-
order and moving briskly. trol of the Army, the Navy, and War Ship-
ping Administration, or a foreign nation.143
Immediately after each troopship de- Because of the submarine menace it was
parture the port of embarkation made a considered desirable to notify relatives as
full report to the War Department. Copies soon as soldiers arrived overseas. This was
of passenger lists as corrected at the gang- accomplished in the beginning by having
way were sent to the Chief of Transporta- "safe arrival cards" prepared before the
tion and The Adjutant General, and ship sailed, and mailing them from the
copies, of course, were given to the trans- port of embarkation as soon as a message
port commanders. Various summaries was received that the vessel had arrived at
were required by the Chief of Transporta- its destination. Early in 1943 the style of
tion showing the passengers according to 143
shipment numbers, types of personnel AR 55-385, 31 Dec 42; TC Cir 50-8, revised, 10
Apr 44, sub: Passenger Lists and Passenger Sum-
(units, replacements, fillers, and so forth), maries; TG Cir 50-23, 27 Apr 44, sub: Classification
and arms and services. The summaries of Outbound Passengers.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 135

card was changed so that reference to safe were said to be combat loaded; they were
arrival was omitted and only the Army small or medium types and were specially
Post Office (APO) number and the cable equipped for the purpose. The billeting of
address were given. Later in the same year troops and the stowing of the impedimenta
the procedure was again changed and a were determined by the force commander,
V-mail form was provided. The V-mail although he usually made his plans in
form was filled out at the port of embarka- consultation with the port commander.146
tion or on the ship but was not mailed Although most amphibious assaults
until after the soldier had arrived overseas were mounted in the theaters, a few were
and his APO number and cable address mounted at home ports. The first large as-
had been definitely established. This pro- sault force loaded at a U.S. port during
cedure prevented the large amount of mis- the war was the Western Task Force, com-
directed mail that had resulted from the manded by Maj. Gen. George S. Patton,
use of tentative APO numbers.144 Jr., which participated in the invasion of
In 1942 when many National Guard North Africa. The major elements were
units were being sent overseas, General loaded at the Hampton Roads Port of
Marshall made it a practice to send per- Embarkation in October 1942. The time
sonal letters of notification to the gov- for planning had been short and ideas re-
ernors of the respective states as soon as garding matriel requirements varied
the arrival of the ships at destination had greatly. There was considerable confusion
been reported. While he intended that the at the port because of the lack of estab-
governors, through means at their dis- lished procedures and the difficulty of
posal, should notify relatives of the mem- achieving complete co-ordination between
bers of the units, General Marshall point- the task force commander, the port com-
ed out that the code of wartime practices mander, and the naval officer who com-
would not permit the publication of this manded the expedition afloat. Through
information in the press.145 attention to lessons learned from this ex-
perience, the embarkation of Maj. Gen.
The great majority of the troops sent Troy H. Middleton's force for the invasion
overseas were not expected to land against of Sicily, accomplished at Hampton
opposition and were therefore embarked Roads in June 1943, proceeded much
147
according to the regular procedures. more smoothly. The same may be said
When task forces were embarked to as- 144
WDCir.191,15Jun42, Sec. VII; WD Cir 36,
sault hostile shores, the embarkation re- 2 Feb 43, Sec. IV; WD Cir 197, 2 Sep 43, Sec. III;
quirements were somewhat different. In Memo, Dir Army Postal Sv for AGO, 1 Jun 43, AG
that case the entire personnel constituted 311.1 (1-6-43) WD Cir 36.
145
See file WDCSA 370.5 (Secret) for correspond-
a combat team and their billeting was ence with governors.
146
governed by that fact. Also, so far as possi- 147
AR 55-390, 16 Dec 42, par. 10c.
ble the organizational equipment and Richard M. Leighton and Robert W. Coakley,
Global Logistics and Strategy: 1940-1943, UNITED
supplies were loaded in the same ship with STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II (Washing-
the troops and were stowed in such a way ton, 1955), Ch. XVI; OCT HB Monograph 13, pp.
that they could be put ashore quickly and 50-59. See also articles by Brig Gen John R. Kilpat-
rick, CG HRPE, "Task Force A" and "Task Force
in the order in which they would be B," Army Transportation Journal, II, 6-8 (September
needed. The vessels in such operations 1946) and 26-28 (October 1946).
136 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

for the forces sent against Attu and Kiska, sponsible for the passengers; and that of
which were loaded on the west coast in the commander of the naval armed guard
April and July 1943. or gun crew. Administration was further
complicated by the fact that the trans-
The key to smooth embarkation was ports were operated under the control and
thorough planning and procedures that according to the standards of the U.S.
were fully developed and completely Navy, the War Shipping Administration,
understood by all concerned; improviza- and the British Ministry of War Transport,
tion had to be reduced to a minimum. in addition to the Army.
Such procedures were fairly well worked The transport commander was in
out during the first year of the war so far command of all personnel on board ex-
as regular embarkations were concerned cept the ship's crew and the naval armed
by close co-ordination of the activities of guard. He was the chief of the permanent
the staging areas and the several operating military complement on the vessel, and in
divisions of the ports of embarkation, all matters affecting the administration of the
functioning under the supervision of the ship his authority was superior to that of
port commanders. There were not enough the officers who were traveling as passen-
embarkations of assault forces at U.S. gers, even though they might outrank him.
ports to enable procedures to be developed His relationship with the unit commanders
to anything approaching the same degree was that of a station commander to the
of refinement, and the problem was com- commanders of units bivouacked at his
plicated by the fact that the interests of station. During peacetime the chief of the
the task force commanders and the naval permanent military complement, then
commanders, as well as those of the port known as the commanding officer of
commanders, had to be taken into troops, had been required to yield his
account. command whenever a line officer of supe-
rior rank was on board and to serve as a
Troopship Administration member of that officer's staff. The arrange-
ment was found to be impracticable after
The administration of a troop transport troop movements by water became large,
was complicated by problems that did not and in 1942 the position of transport com-
exist in other military commands. One mander was created.148 Most unit com-
reason for this was the crowded and ab- manders had no experience in dealing
normal conditions under which the troops with the wartime problems of troopship
lived while on board. Another was the administration, and some of them, upon
variety of passengers carrieduniformed assuming command of the personnel on
men and women of all of the American board, tried to revise the established pro-
armed forces, and usually military person- cedures according to their own ideas. The
nel of our Allies and some civilians. Yet confusion that ensued emphasized the
another reason lay in the fact that three need for transport commanders who would
independent authorities were exercised
side by sidethat of the master, who had 148
AR 30-1130, 23 Jul 32, par. 1; WD Cir 109, 6
full responsibility for the ship; that of the Jun 41, Sec. IV; AR 55-320, 7 Dec 42, Sec. I, and
transport commander, who was solely re- Changes 1, 26 Jan 43; AR 55-315, 11 Nov 44.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 137

serve continuously in that office with regulations covering fire and boat drills
149
unbroken authority. and blackouts were posted. A plan was
The transport commander was assigned prepared for feeding the troops, which in
by, and exercised his authority as a repre- the larger ships involved continuous opera-
sentative of, an Army port commander. In tion of the galleys and mess halls. The loca-
the beginning port commanders were re- tion of guard posts to control traffic, pro-
quired to select line officers as transport tect stores, and insure discipline were de-
commanders, but because of the difficulty termined. Orders were issued relating to
of obtaining qualified men the limitation dress, general conduct, and sanitation.
was lifted and officers of the supply serv- Plans were laid for the recreation, instruc-
ices assigned to duty with the Transporta- tion, and training of the troops. Off limits
tion Corps could be selected.150 The ports and smoking areas were defined. Provi-
of embarkation maintained offices through sions were made for the administration
which the transport commanders received and security of the sales commissary. The
their instructions and filed their voyage requirements for work details to be pro-
reports and recommendations. The impor- vided by unit commanders were deter-
tance of the post and the need for uniform mined, including details for the operation
instruction and over-all supervision caused of the messes, the handling of stores, and
the Movements Division to recommend in the performance of guard and general
January 1944 that it be granted personnel police duty. Throughout the voyage the
for the establishment of a new branch to transport commander had to be constantly
deal especially with transport commanders alert to insure that all general and special
152
and transport complements. Such a unit orders he had issued were enforced.
was not activated, however, until May The military complement, which func-
1945, and uniform instructions for trans- tioned under the supervision of the trans-
port commanders were not published by 149
the Office of the Chief of Transportation Interv with Col Herbert S. Duncombe, 26 Feb
51, OCT HB PE Gen Transport Complement. Colo-
until after the war had ended.151 nel Duncombe served as both commanding officer of
The duties of the transport commander troops and transport commander, sailing out of New
were varied and exacting. Before each York.
150
AR 600-20, 1 Jun 42, par. 3a; Memo, CG NYPE
voyage he made a thorough inspection of for CofT, 2 Dec 42; Memo, CG SOS for ACofS G-1,
his ship and prepared a plan for utilizing 22 Mar 43; last two in AG 210.72 (4-1-42) AR 600-20;
the facilities in a way that would best AR 600-20, Changes 2, 26 Jan 43, and Changes 3, 9
Apr 43.
serve the troops and other passengers who 151
Memo, Farr for Wylie, 31 Jan 44, OCT HB
were scheduled to embark. It was neces- Farr Staybacks; Memo by Lt Col Richard C. Mar-
sary to have instructions applicable to the shall, 20 Jun 45, incorporated in Mvmt Div Hist,
OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen; TC Pamphlet 44, Trans-
passengers ready for distribution and port Comdrs Guide, Mar 46.
guard details ready to enforce them when 152
AR 55-430, 19 Sep 42, sub: Conduct of Passen-
embarkation began, otherwise confusion gers; AR 55-435, 1 Sep 42, sub: Routine of Passengers;
TC Pamphlet 44, cited n. 151; .NYPE, Instructions
would ensue. The location of billeting for Transport Comdrs, 1 May 43, OCT HB NYPE
areas, mess halls, recreation areas, latrines, Transport Comdrs; Maj F. H. Mayne, Duties of a
and passageways were charted. Emer- Transport Commander, address at Atlantic Coast
TC Offs Tng School, OCT HB Fort Slocum Lectures;
gency abandon-ship stations were assigned SFPE Transport Comdrs Manual, May 45, OCT HB
to the troops in each billeting area, and PE Gen Transport Complements.
138 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

port commander, varied in size according rules was worked out by the Chief of
to the troop capacity of the vessel, and Transportation and the Naval Transpor-
eventually the number of members and tation Service that removed the principal
their ranks were specified by the Chief of causes of discord.157 After these rules were
Transportation.153 This complement com- issued in the spring of 1944, no Army
prised personnel assigned to the office of transport commanders were placed on
the transport commander, the office of the troopships that were under Navy control,
transport surgeon, the office of the chap- and the military complements that super-
lain, and the signal section. The total vised the Army personnel traveling on
authorized personnel of these offices such vessels were subordinate to the rank-
ranged from four on vessels capable of ing naval officers on board. A correspond-
carrying 50 to 100 troops to thirty-two on ing relationship was established with
transports carrying 6,000 or more. In respect to naval personnel traveling on
addition, the transport commander super- vessels under the control of the Army.
vised the ship transportation officer (ini- Under arrangements with the British
tially called cargo security officer), whose Army Staff and the British Ministry of
function was to prevent the mishandling War Transport, American military com-
or pilferage of Army cargo, and the ship plements, headed by transport com-
transportation agent (civilian), who ad- manders, were placed on the larger British
ministered supplies and funds on vessels vessels that carried U.S. troops regu-
154
operated by the Army. All members of larly.158 The British Army also placed
troopship complements were selected and military complements on these vessels, and
assigned by the Army port commanders the British officers in charge had author-
under whose jurisdictions the respective ity over the American staffs. Although
vessels were placed by the Chief of their methods were different, harmonious
Transportation.155 relationships prevailed between the two
In order to forestall jurisdictional dis- groups, and during the period when U.S.
putes, the duties and relationships of the troops were utilizing most of the space on
masters of Army-operated transports, the these vessels, the British complements were
transport commanders, and the com- 153
TC Pamphlet 24, Ships' Complements and
manders of units traveling on such vessels Cargo Security Officers, 29 May 45, Sec. I and Tables
were clearly defined in Army regula- A and B.
154
tions.156 These regulations sufficed also for AR 55-320, 11 Nov 44; WD Cir 141, 12 May 45,
Sec. II.
vessels operated by agents of the War 155
Memo. CofT for PEs, 7 Mar 44, Ports of Assign-
Shipping Administration and allocated to ment of WSA Vessels, OCT 320.2, 1944 Gen.
156
the Army. A more complex problem of AR 30-1130, 23 Jul 32; WD Cir 109, 6 Jun 41-
Sec. IV; AR 55-320, 7 Dec 42.
jurisdiction developed when large num- 157
Memo, HRPE for CofT, 23 Feb 44, and 1st Ind
bers of Army personnel began traveling on by CofT, 10 Mar 44, OCT 560.11 Hampton Roads;
transports operated by the Navy and on Wardlow, op. cit., p. 208; WD Cir 167, 29 Apr 44;
WD Memo 55-44, 22 May 45, sub: Principles Gov-
WSA transports allocated to the Navy. erning Jurisdiction and Operating Procedure Aboard
On such vessels the naval commanding Army, Navy, and Allocated Troop Transports.
158
officers insisted on paramount authority Memo, Wylie for Styer, 22 Sep 42, ASF Hq
CofS Trans; Memo, CofT for CofT ETO, 22 Apr 44;
with respect to all passengers. There were . 1st Ind, CofT for CofT ETO, 22 Jun 44; last two in
frequent misunderstandings until a set of OCT 320.2 ETO.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 139

greatly reduced and the American trans- complement and by one of the ship's offi-
port commanders were permitted to fol- cers, to determine that the ventilating and
low their own procedures. When consider- sanitary systems were working, that the
able numbers of Canadian troops were galleys and mess halls were being operated
being carried, the Canadian Army also properly, that the medical department
placed transport commanders on board. was fulfilling its responsibilities, and that
The principal problems encountered in cleanliness and order were being main-
moving American troops on British vessels tained throughout. During these inspec-
stemmed from differences in facilities, tions the transport commander noted
services, and food. The capacities of the repairs and replacements that should be
British vessels had been greatly increased made on the next call at the home port
when they entered U.S. troop service, and and also the improvements or additions to
in some respects the facilities had not been the facilities that were needed. His recom-
increased and improved correspondingly, mendations on these points were sub-
because of the scarcity of equipment and mitted to the home port commander with
160
the quick dispatch that the vessels were his voyage report.
given in British ports. When these defi-
ciencies came to light in the prevoyage As an aid to morale the Chief of
inspection to which all troopships, Ameri- Transportation endeavored to bring the
can and foreign, were subjected by the messes on troop transports to as high a
U.S. Army port commanders, immediate standard as could be attained with the
steps were taken to correct them. British limited space available for galleys and
troops traveling on U.S. vessels also com- mess halls and the large number of pas-
plained about the facilities and the food. sengers to be fed. Notwithstanding this
It was not practicable to undertake to effort, the food service sometimes was un-
eliminate all difference in standards, but satisfactory, particularly on ships that
an agreement was reached regarding were just entering service and those mak-
the minimum standards to be provided ing long voyages through the tropics. Dur-
on British and American troopships, ing a considerable part of the war troops
159
respectively. bound overseas were given two full meals
The crowded condition of the ships, each day, which was considered adequate
even when only the normal load was being in view of the relatively inactive life that
carried, invariably involved inconvenience the men were compelled to lead while at
and discomfort for the passengers, particu- sea. Even then the troop messes on some
larly the enlisted men. In severe winter ships had to be in continuous operation
weather and in the tropics additional throughout the day in order to take care
hardships were encountered. The efforts of the numerous shifts into which the men
to offset these conditions by entertainment were divided. Late in the war this policy
and exercise were handicapped by limited was modified so that two and one-half
space. All that the transport commander meals were servedthat is, full meals in
could do was to make the best possible use 159
of the facilities that were available. To this Concerning this agreement, see Wardlow, op.
cit., p. 225.
end he made a daily inspection of the ves- 160
See NYPE, General Instructions for Transporf-
sel, accompanied by other members of his Gomdrs, 1 May 43.
140 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

CROWDED ACCOMMODATIONS ABOARD A TROOP TRANSPORT

the morning and in the evening, and a were traveling on British vessels, as was
light meal at noon.161 the case between New York and the United
During 1943 there was some improve- Kingdom, the Transportation Corps sup-
ment in troopship messes resulting from an plied the U.S. Army ration for those troops
ASF program to better the food service and also provided American personnel to
throughout the Army.162 The special mess supplement the British galley crews.
adviser assigned by the Chief of Transpor- Because of the large number of troops to
tation to this task early in 1944 got good be fed, it was necessary to serve them, dis-
results, but he was limited to vessels oper- pose of the remaining food, and clean the
ated by the Army and by WSA agents and utensils as rapidly as possible. The service
had no jurisdiction over the messes on was cafeteria style and the Army's first
troopships operated by the U.S. Navy or plan was to have the soldier use his field
the British. The Navy provided messes
comparable in general to those on Army 161
Memo, CofT for PEs, 13 May 44, sub: Orienta-
transports. As a rule, the American soldier tion Course in Transport Messing, OCT HB PE Gen
Transport Complements and Services; TC Cir 80-17,
did not like the food on British troopships, 25 Jan 45, sub: Troop Messing Aboard Vessels.
and when large numbers of U.S. troops 162
Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 243-45.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 141

mess kit, eat while standing, and clean his did not prove adequate. As a result, some
own equipment. This plan was adopted transport commanders had to contend
early in the war because of the difficulty with the "black market" problem.
in obtaining satisfactory compartmented Maintaining morale was the principal
trays and the machinery for cleaning and aim of the so-called transport services
sterilizing them. The Navy on the other activities. When the soldier was occupied
hand favored the use of trays and sit-down with sports, theatricals, movies, and other
service. In 1944, in view of the large num- forms of entertainment he had less oppor-
ber of new troopships being used jointly in tunity to think about the discomforts of the
the Pacific and the development of a suit- voyage and the hazardous adventure that
able tray, the Army modified its policy.163 lay ahead of him. Books, magazines, pho-
But troopships under Army control were nograph records, and Army News Service
forbidden to utilize trays until proper broadcasts served the same purpose. While
facilities for cleaning, sterilizing, and some soldiers carried their own musical
drying them had been installed.164 instruments, the ports solicited donations
The sales commissary was another aid of instruments, which they repaired and
to morale since it gave the soldier an placed on the transports to encourage in-
opportunity to purchase cigarettes, candy, formal as well as organized musicales. The
soft drinks, and other items that contrib- transport services activities also included
uted to his comfort and pleasure. During informational and educational programs
peacetime a post exchange had been oper- to prepare the soldier for experiences in
ated on each Army transport and had the country for which he was destined and
carried a wide variety of commodities to assistance with the personal problems of
be sold to military personnel and their the individual and his family. Initially
families. Under wartime conditions so these activities were in charge of the ship's
varied a stock was not necessary and the chaplain when there was one on board; if
rapid increase in the number of transports no transport chaplain was on board, the
made the administration of post exchanges transport commander took the responsi-
burdensome. In the summer of 1942, bility himself or assigned it to the ship's
therefore, the post exchange was replaced transportation officer. Since all of these
by the sales commissary, operated on a officers had other responsibilities that pre-
more limited basis. The officer in charge vented them from giving sufficient time to
was a member of the permanent military educational and recreational activities, a
complement and functioned under the specially selected transport services officer
general direction of the transport com- 163
mander. In the beginning sales commis- For review of these developments, see OCT
HB Monograph 12, pp. 56-59.
saries were maintained only on Army 164
TC Cir 133, 19 Oct 43; TC Cir 80-16, 4 Apr 44,
transports and on WSA vessels allocated and Changes 13, 20 Jul 44; Memo, C of Water Div
to the Army, but later they were estab- OCT for C of Ship Conversion Unit, 5 Jul 44, OCT
HB Water Div Ship Repair and Conv.
lished also on British vessels that were 165
WD Cir 281, 22 Aug 42; Memo, CofT for
regularly engaged in the movement of NYPE, 21 Dec 42, OCT 400.34 N. Y.; WD Memo W
165 55-17-43, 5 May 43, sub: Opn of Sales Commissaries;
U.S. troops. The principal difficulty was
1st Ind, CofT for TQMG, 28 Jan 44, sub: Canteen
that only limited space could be allotted Supplies for British Army Transports, OCT HB Farr
to this activity, and the stocks frequently Staybacks.
142 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

IMPROMPTU ENTERTAINMENT ABOARD SHIP

was added to the permanent military com- transported. The appointment of a trans-
plement late in the war. The organization port services officer to take over this
of each port of embarkation included an responsibility was therefore welcomed.
officer to supervise these activities and pro- Chaplains served regularly on the
vide the equipment that they required.166 troopships operated by the Army and by
The transport chaplain's principal duty WSA agents for the Army. When the
was to look after the spiritual and moral Navy began operating some of the new
welfare of the troops. Sometimes the chap- troopships that had been built for the
lain was qualified to assume the additional Army, it was thought for a time that the
responsibility for recreation and entertain- Navy chaplain on such vessels would
ment that he had until late in the war, but 166
TC Cir 167, corrected 17 Dec 43; TC Cir 35-11,
often he lacked the temperament as well 11 Jul 44; WD Cir 360, 5 Sep 44, par. 7; TC Cir 35-2,
as the time needed to do it justice. This 22 Feb 45; TC Cir 35-14, 28 Mar 45; TC Cir 35-11,
was true even though the chaplain was 28 May 45; TC Pamphlet 43, Transport Services Pro-
grams, 27 Jun 45; NYPE Pamphlet 1, 1 May 45, sub:
authorized to enlist the assistance of the Transport Services Manual; all in OCT HB PE Gen
special services officers of units being Transport Complements and Services.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 143

suffice. Experience showed, however, that cause of any sickness that might develop
the Navy chaplain's time was devoted al- during the voyage. It was readily recog-
most entirely to the crew and consequently nized that overcrowding was a contribut-
an Army transport chaplain was provided. ing cause to many illnesses, but the Chief
The transport chaplains received guid- of Transportation was under such pressure
ance from the chaplains of the ports to to meet the requirements of the theater
which their vessels were attached.167 commanders for troops that overloading
On the transports, as at the staging was inevitable.170 He nevertheless desired
areas, it was desirable to conduct some that troop movement officers always con-
form of training to keep the soldier physi- sult the port surgeons when heavy over-
cally fit, but the possibilities for training loading was contemplated, and that
were even more limited. Since space re- their recommendations be followed when
served for training reduced troop capacity, possible.171
the Chief of Transportation directed his Since troops received needed dental
port commanders not to reserve such space attention at home stations and at the stag-
on voyages to North Africa, Europe, ing areas, no space on the transports was
Hawaii, and Alaska, which were only assigned to dental equipment and dental
slightly in excess of one week. On longer personnel. Emergency needs were taken
voyages a space allowance was made. In care of by the dental personnel of units
any case the prescribed training required that were on board. There was a slight
only a minimum of equipment. The aim modification of this policy after V-E Day.
was to devote from thirty minutes to an Port commanders were then permitted to
hour each day to training that consisted install dental equipment on transports
chiefly of physical exercise. What actu- provided it could be done without re-
ally was accomplished depended on the ducing the troop space and with the
weather and other circumstances of the understanding that no permanent dental
voyage, and to a considerable extent on personnel would be assigned.172
the ingenuity of the transport com-
mander.168 Some technical training was 167
AR 55-355, 22 Aug 42; Memo, CofT for PEs,
also given on board, chiefly for radio 13 Jun 44, sub: Asgmt of Army Chaplains, and
atchd documents, OCT HB Meyer Staybacks.
technicians, but that, too, was affected by 168
Memo, CofT for PEs, 27 Dec 43, sub: Troop
the limitation on equipment as well as by Tng Aboard Transports, OCT HB Farr Staybacks;
the rules relating to radio silence at sea.169 Memo, ACofS G-3 for CG ASF, 28 Jan 44, sub: Phys-
ical Tng, OCT 353.5 Physical Tng; Digest of Rpt,
Maj George Ream, OCT, to ACofS G-3, 16 Mar 44,
The transport surgeon was a member OCT HB PE Gen Transport Complements.
169
of the permanent military complement; ASF Cir 108, 28 Oct 43.
170
Medical service on troop transports will be
he was directly responsible to the transport treated more fully in the discussion of evacuation of
commander but was under the technical patients from the theaters. See below, Ch. III.
171
supervision of the port surgeon. In addi- AR 55-350, 14 Sep 42; Memo, NYPE for CofT,
2 Oct 43, sub: Outbreak of Diarrhea Aboard Trans-
tion to having charge of the ship's hospi- port, OCT 680-900 New York; Min of Conf of Port
tal, he gave attention to all matters affect- Surgeons and Troop Mvmt Offs, Ft Hamilton, N.Y.,
ing the health of troops, including the 12-14 Oct 43, p. 40, OCT HB NYPE Port Surgeon.
172
Memo, CofT for CG NYPE, 28 Jul 45, sub:
maintenance of proper sanitation, cleanli- Installation of Dental Equip Aboard Troopships,
ness, and ventilation, and investigated the OCT 564 Troopships.
144 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

Replacements and other casual troops resentatives of such organizations as the


when traveling in large numbers fre- American Red Cross and the Young Men's
174
quently created problems for the transport Christian Association. This kind of
commanders because they were not as well travel was kept at a minimum not only
organized and controlled as the members because the space was needed for troops
of units. The designation of convoy or but also because the facilities and services
escort officers by the commanders of the on the transports were not up to the stand-
replacement depots from which such ards that civilian passengers expected.
troops were shipped relieved the situation The regulations provided that women,
considerably after that procedure was in- other than Army nurses and Red Cross
augurated late in 1943, but the problems workers, would not be carried on troop-
persisted. Some escort officers, being only ships except on specific authorization of
temporarily in command of the troops, did the Chief of Transportation. He took the
not take their responsibilities seriously. On position that the few women who were
the other hand, some transport com- sent abroad by civilian agencies should be
manders assigned these officers staff duties transported by air, since they had to be
that prevented them from giving proper assigned to separate compartments on
supervision to the troops in their charge. troopships, and this usually involved a
When the latter situation came to the waste of space. The policy could not be
attention of the Chief of Transportation, carried out uniformly, however, for OPD
he requested the port commanders to in- sometimes found it necessary to assign
struct all transport commanders regarding troopship priorities for civilian women,
the duties of escort officers toward their and these priorities were binding on the
troops and to warn them against unneces- Chief of Transportation.175
sary interference with the performance of
those duties. He nevertheless maintained During the voyages transport com-
that casual escort officers must be ready to manders issued debarkation schedules and
assist the transport commanders, as was appropriate instructions in order that they
the case with unit commanders.173 might be studied and plans might be
The transportation of nonmilitary pas- made to accomplish debarkations smooth-
sengers on troopships under Army control ly and quickly. These instructions were
was carefully regulated. All applications drawn up in accordance with the estab-
passed through the Office of the Chief of lished practices of the ports, and revisions
Transportation, which obtained clearance sometimes were necessitated by special
from OPD before notifying the ports of orders issued by the port commanders.
embarkation that the passengers could be When calling at unfamiliar ports, the
accepted. Nonmilitary passengers included
diplomatic personnel and others traveling 173
Memo, CofT for PEs, 12 Jan 44, and atchd cor-
under the auspices of the State Depart- respondence; Memo, CG HRPE for Comdr of General
W. A. Mann, 7 Jun 44; Memo, CG HRPE for CofT,
ment, representatives of other civilian 18 Jun 44; all in OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
agencies of the federal government, officers 174
AR 55-390, 16 Dec 42, Secs. II and IV.
175
and employees of territorial governments, Ltr, SW to Secy State, prepared 15 Mar 43; 2d
Ind, CofT for ACofS OPD, 26 Nov 43; both in OCT
employees of contractors doing work for HB Farr Staybacks; TC Cir 80-13, 1 Jan 44, sub:
the armed forces in oversea areas, and rep- Mvmt of Pers.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 145

transport commander based his instruc- be a major, and on smaller ships a cap-
178
tions on such information regarding port tain. Often, however, officers of such
procedures as he could obtain in advance, ranks were not available and officers of
and he sometimes prepared alternate in- lower rank had to be assigned. Regardless
structions in order to be ready for several of rank, some men had the necessary
contingencies. Upon completion of de- qualifications and others did not. Careful
barkation the transport commander sent a selection, constant instruction and super-
message to the port from which he had vision, and prompt relief of those who did
sailed, announcing his arrival overseas, not measure up to the requirements en-
indicating any discrepancies that had been abled the port commanders to build up a
discovered between the passenger list and generally competent group of transport
the troops actually on board, and giving commanders.
the names of any passengers that had been
injured or had become seriously ill during The Liberty Ship as a Troop Carrier
the voyage.176
Special and unusually difficult prob-
The key to successful troopship admin- lems were encountered in connection with
istration was the competence of the trans- the use of about 225 Liberty ships that
port commander. New appointees found had been temporarily converted to carry
themselves confronted with a maze of troops. The Liberties, although slow and
unfamiliar problems. After an officer had designed solely as freighters, were used for
served as transport commander for a troop transportation because without
number of voyages he could count on ex- them the execution of strategic plans
perience to guide him in many matters, would have been delayed.179 The original
but no two voyages were alike. At all times conversions were hastily made by the War
the responsibility was a heavy one. It re- Shipping Administration in order that the
quired administrative skill in controlling vessels might join convoys to North Africa
the activities and conduct of a large num- without loss of time. The Chief of Trans-
ber of troops under difficult circumstances, portation recognized that the Liberty
ingenuity in making the best possible use ships were far from ideal as troop carriers,
of limited means, and diplomacy in deal- but he probably did not realize when they
ing with ship's officers and unit com- first went into troop service in September
manders. The latter were usually conser- 1943 how serious would be the complaints
vative in their criticisms, but in some cases from those who traveled on them. The
their reports indicated that they had found 176
AR 55-445, 19 Sep 42; NYPE, General Instruc-
little to their satisfaction on the ships.177 tions for Transport Comdrs, 1 May 43, Sec. IV, OCT
A frequent handicap to transport com- HB NYPE Transport Comdrs; TC Pamphlet 44, Mar
manders was their low rank. Under the 46,177pp. 14, 15.
table of organization for military comple- 19 OctFor example, Rpt on Shipment 2086, to TAG,
44, OCT 333.7 General A. E. Anderson.
ments established by the Chief of Trans- 178
TC Cir 25-8, revised 13 May 44.
179
portation, the transport commander on a See above, pp. 90-91; Memo, Gross for Styer, 19
ship carrying 4,000 or more passengers Nov 43, OCT HB Wylie Liberty Ship Conversions;
Memo, CofT for ACofS OPD, 31 Dec 43, sub: Emer-
might be a colonel. On a ship carrying be- gency Use of POW Converted Liberty Ships, OPD
tween 500 and 4,000 passengers he might 560 (24 Jan 44).
146 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

galley and mess facilities were very un- War Shipping Administration, and the
satisfactory. The sanitary installations Maritime Commission was requested to
were inadequate. The food storage and accomplish the work as promptly as pos-
181
fresh water capacities were small. Insuffi- sible. In November 1943 an under-
cient space was allotted to the medical de- standing was reached between the Chief
partment and the sales commissary. Ven- of Transportation and the WSA regarding
tilation and heating were poor. The deck the division of responsibility for the com-
spaces available for recreation were fort and safety of the troops. The WSA,
exceedingly limited.180 whose agents operated the vessels, agreed
Other conditions contributed to the dif- to provide adequate steward personnel
ficulties encountered on the Liberties dur- and food, and to instruct the masters re-
ing the early period of their employment garding their duties in connection with
as troop carriers. The responsibilities the care of passengers and co-operation
assumed by transport commanders on with the transport commanders. The
larger ships were assigned to cargo secu- Chief of Transportation agreed to establish
rity officers, who in most instances were limits for the number of troops to be em-
lieutenants without experience to qualify barked, to arrange for the inspection of
them for the task. The unsatisfactory the vessels before each voyage, to assign
quarters, poor and sometimes insufficient transport commanders with adequate
food, and lack of space for exercise often military staffs, and to provide sufficient
created a recalcitrant spirit among the medical and commissary supplies.182
troops resulting in poor discipline, pilfer- These measures brought considerable
age of galley and commissary stores, and improvement, but the temporarily con-
indisposition to maintain order and clean- verted Liberties still lacked many desir-
liness. Some of the ships' masters resented able features, and their slowness was an
the conversion of their vessels and the added disadvantage. The first plan was to
added responsibilities the transportation carry only 350 troops, but the demand for
of passengers entailed. The troops em- space was so great that the limit was raised
183
barked on these vessels usually were small to 500. By May 1944 the addition of
units or casuals and most of their officers 180
See numerous documents in OCT HB Water
were young and inexperienced. The Chief Div Converted Liberty Ships, and OCT HB Wylie
of Transportation observed that because Liberty Ship Conversions; see also record of discussion
of the unusual conditions the more sea- in Min of Port Comdrs Conf, New Orleans, 11-14 Jan
44, pp. 95-102.
soned transport commanders were needed 181
Ltr, C of Water Div OCT for Dir Opns and
for the Liberty ships, but they obviously Traf, U.S. Mar Com, 18 Oct 43, OCT 564 EC-2
could not be taken from the regular Vessels.
182
Agreement Between the War Shipping Admin-
troopships. istration and the Chief of Transportation Regarding
Reports from early voyages of converted EC-2 Hastily Converted Prisoner of War Ships for the
Liberties in slow convoys to the Mediter- Transportation of U.S. Troops Outbound, 20 Nov 43,
OCT HB Wylie WSA; Memo, CG ASF for DCofS
ranean made it clear that immediate steps WDGS, 10 Feb 44, sub: Final RptConverted Lib-
would have to be taken to improve their erty Ships, OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
183
facilities and operation. Measures for bet- Msg, Mvmts Div to NYPE and BPE, 4 Feb 44,
OCT HB Mvmts Div Farr Staybacks; Memo, WSA
tering the facilities were agreed upon be- New York for Col Raymond M. Hicks, 2 Mar 44,
tween the Chief of Transportation and the OCT 565.2 WSA.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 147

more desirable types of vessels to the greater foresight on the part of the mili-
troopship fleet made it possible to discon- tary authorities would have obviated their
tinue use of the temporarily converted use. General Gross* nevertheless, main-
Liberties. Thereafter, only those that had tained that they had served a useful pur-
been provided with permanent facilities pose and recommended that they be kept
for troops were used.184 available as potential troop carriers
The fact that the Combined Chiefs of against the possibility that they might be
Staff had approved the use of temporarily needed in connection with a further ex-
converted Liberty ships as emergency pansion of the military effort or for the
troop carriers did not relieve the Army of repatriation of troops after hostilities were
criticism. Because of the unsatisfactory over.187 That plan was followed and in
conditions on board, the Navy Depart- the summer of 1945, in anticipation of the
ment requested the Chief of Transporta- heavy redeployment and repatriation
tion not to place naval personnel on these traffic, about 200 converted Liberties were
vessels. However, General Gross took the prepared to carry 550 troops each with
position that, since the decision to use some improvements over their former pas-
them had been taken deliberately by the senger facilities.
CCS as a matter of military necessity and
with a realization of the problems in- Justification for the use of the Liberty
volved, they should be used without dis- ship as a troop carrier rested solely on the
crimination in favor of any branch of the urgency of the need for additional troop
military service. On the other hand, he lift. In September 1943, when the decision
ordered that if possible the ports avoid was made to employ this type of vessel for
embarking civilian passengers on Liberty moving troops overseas, the Allies were
ships.185 still struggling with the problem of con-
When a number of Liberties developed structing enough ships to offset sinkings
structural cracks, the U.S. Coast Guard by the enemy while adequately support-
recommended that vessels of this type be ing the armies on the far-flung battle
withdrawn from troop service to the ex- fronts. The Liberty ship was being built in
tent that troop commitments would per- a fraction of the time required to complete
mit. The commitments at that time were
184
so heavy that no troop lift could be spared. Msg, Mvmts Div to Port Comdrs, 21 Apr 44;
The Chief of Transportation agreed that OCT Memo, CofT for Port Comdrs, 29 Apr 44; both in
HB Water Div Converted Liberty Ships.
strengthening alterations should be made 185
Memo, VCNO for CofT, 7 Dec 43, sub: Trans
when the ships were laid up for other re- of Naval Pers in Liberty Type Vessels; 1st Ind by
pairs, but he was unwilling for them to be Gross, 14 Dec 43; both in OCT 569.3 Liberty Ships;
1st Ind, CofT for HRPE, 22 Apr 44, OCT HB Farr
taken from service solely for that purpose Staybacks.
unless the cracks constituted a safety 186
Memo, USCG for Lt Col Otey Y. Warren,
hazard.186 OCT, 5 Feb 44; Memo, CofT for ACofS OPD, 11
Feb 44; Memo, Farr for Gross, 17 Feb 44; all in OCT
In a report issued in June 1944 the HB Farr Staybacks (Nos. 85 and 100).
Senate Special Committee Investigating 187
Senate Special Committee Investigating the
the National Defense Program comment- National Defense Program, additional report, Mer-
chant Shipping, Rpt 10, Pt. 18, June 23, 1944; Memo,
ed on the unsuitability of Liberty ships for Gross for Somervell, 30 Jun 44, sub: Comments on
troop traffic and expressed the view that Truman Committee Rpt, OCT HB Gross Troopships.
148 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

other types of vessels, and the installationimmediately or soon after their debarka-
of temporary troop accommodations could tion. Fulfilling this requirement involved
be accomplished between voyages without many problems for the Chief of Transpor-
loss of ship time. Appraisal of the use of tation. Numerous devices were tried in the
these vessels, therefore, must take into ac-effort to meet these problems, and consid-
count the fact that they represented the erable improvement was achieved during
quickest way of achieving the additional the war, but because of the many consid-
troop lift desired by the military author- erations involved and changing conditions
ities. The withdrawal of Liberty ships in the theaters a complete solution was
188
from troop service as more suitable ships never reached.
became available indicates that the Army The amount of organizational equip-
regarded their use as an emergency or ment to be shipped varied according to
stopgap measure. Their further employ- the types of units and the areas for which
ment during redeployment was essential they were destined. The equipment of an
to the plan for bringing the war in the armored force naturally had greater cubic
Pacific to an early conclusion, and during measurement per man than that of an in-
the repatriation period their use was a fantry force or a service unit.189 The quan-
concession to the popular demand that tity of equipment required in an area
the troops be returned home as quickly as where a great amount of construction or
possible. reconstruction was necessary, or in an
area where no paraphernalia or supplies
Movement of Organizational Equipment could be procured locally, was greater
than elsewhere. The contrast between
While troop units moving overseas took World War I and World War II was strik-
their personal equipment with them into ing in this respect. In World War I ap-
the staging areas and onto the ships, their proximately 50 percent of the matriel
organizational equipment and initial sup- required by the American Expeditionary
plies moved separately to and through the Forces was obtained in Europe. In World
ports. The term "organizational equip- War II the Army not only shipped the
ment" covered the vehicles, tanks, artil- preponderance of its requirements from
lery, technical paraphernalia, housekeep- the zone of interior, but also the bulk of
ing tools, and other items that the unit those requirements was much greater be-
would require in order to be an effective cause of the increased number and size of
fighting force when it arrived on a foreign weapons, vehicles, bulldozers, and other
shore. Some of this equipment was loaded equipment.
in the same vessels with the units to which In the spring of 1943 the Chief of Trans-
it appertained, but most of it moved in 188
The persistence of the problems is indicated in
other vessels. Some was force marked Memo, Gross for Maj Gen Walter A. Wood, Jr., 12
that is, marked with the shipment num- Jan 45, OCT HB Wylie Staybacks; Ltr, CG NYPE to
Wylie, 15 Jan 45; Memo, Berzelius for Wylie, 20 Jan
bers of the troop units to which it be- 45; last two in OCT HB Wylie Cargo; Memo, Wylie
longedand some was shipped in bulk for Franklin, 21 Jan 45, sub: Loading Troop Equip,
and assigned to units after reaching the OCT HB Wylie Staybacks.
189
For comparison, see Miscellaneous Shipping
theaters. The basic requirement was that Information, data on p. 58, 2 Mar 43, OCT HB Plng
the troops should have their equipment Div Gen.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 149

portation calculated that the initial move- limited application. The convoy system
ment of equipment and supplies per man was little used for sailings from the Pacific
averaged six measurement tons for the coast, and even in the Atlantic fast troop-
Central and Southwest Pacific and the ships ran independently and those of
Middle East, seven measurement tons for medium speed sailed in fast convoys, while
North Africa and the United Kingdom, most cargo vessels moved in slow con-
192
and eight measurement tons for the South voys. The slow cargo convoys, more-
Pacific and Central Africa. In January over, were often broken up overseas and
1945, by which date oversea operations the vessels assigned to different ports for
had assumed a more stable pattern and discharge.
better methods of calculating require- A complaint heard often during the
ments and of packing and stowing mat- early part of the war was that organiza-
riel had been developed, the average for tional equipment was scattered over too
initial shipments to all theaters was five many vessels and hence was difficult to
measurement tons per man.190 locate and consolidate after arrival in the
theater.193 There were several circum-
The movement of troops and their stances that contributed to this kind of
equipment in separate vessels was at the loading. Equipment reached the ports on
root of many of the problems. During the different and sometimes widely scattered
early part of the war there were persistent dates, and the simplest procedure was to
requests from oversea commands, particu- ship it out as it arrived. At a time when
larly those in the Pacific, that troops be shipping space was extremely scarce, the
unit loadedthat is, loaded in the same ports desired to get the best possible stow-
ships with their equipment. Such a pro- age for each cargo vessel, and this often in-
cedure was unquestionably advantageous volved mixing organizational equipment
to the theaters, since it insured arrival of and maintenance supplies. The ports also
both troops and equipment at the same had to consider, especially through the
port at the same time. From the standpoint period of heavy submarine activity in the
of the zone of interior, however, unit load- Atlantic, the consequences of placing all
ing frequently was not practicable. Usually 190
Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 9 Apr 43, OCT HB
it involved unbalanced cargoes and a Wylie Shipping Requirements and Allocations 1943;
waste of ship space. Moreover, the vessels Ltr, SW to Sen Harley M. Kilgore, 10 Jun 43, OCT
that carried large numbers of troops had 500 Mobilization of Shipping Resources; Miscellane-
ous Shipping Information, 21 Jan 45, data on p. 54,
relatively small cargo capacities. The ex- OCT HB Plng Div Gen.
treme examples were the Queen Mary and 191
Memo, CofT for BAS, 25 Feb 43; Memo, Col
the Queen Elizabeth, which could carry up Llewellyn Wansbrough-Jones, BAS, for Farr, OCT,
6 Mar 43; both in OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
to 15,000 troops but could provide space 192
4th Ind, CofT for ACofS for Opns ASF, 4 Apr
for only 500 dead-weight tons of ma- 43, OCT HB Meyer Staybacks.
193
triel.191 Moving troops and their equip- As an extreme case, in September 1942 Maj.
Gen. Mark W. Clark reported that the organizational
ment in different ships therefore was not a equipment of a regiment had arrived in the United
matter of choice but of practical wisdom. Kingdom on 55 different vessels; Memo, CG SOS for
Convoy loadingthat is, forwarding the CofT, 26 Sep 42; Memo, CofT for PEs, 4 Oct 42; both
in OCT HB PE Gen Troop Equip; Memo, CofT for
troops and their equipment in different HRPE, 9 Oct 42, sub: Troop Equip, OCT 475 Over-
vessels but in the same convoyhad only seas Equip Left in U.S.
150 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

or most of a unit's equipment in a single peculiar to the several theaters and the
vessel if that vessel should be sunk. changing strategic situation.
Many other factors entered into the
rather complex situation. Movement A vital factor in the zone of interior was
orders were not always issued sufficiently the control that port commanders exer-
far in advance of the actual movement, cised over the movement of troop impedi-
with the result that shipments of impedi- menta from home stations and depots to
menta were late in reaching the loading the seaboard. Troops and their equipment
ports.194 Particularly during the early part were alike in that respectthe port com-
of the war when many items were in short manders were in the best position to know
supply, units held the equipment they had when their facilities would be able to re-
at home stations as long as possible in ceive additional shipments, how long it
order to complete their training. Some- would take to prepare the shipments for
times the ports were not notified regard- embarkation, and when the vessels would
ing the equipment that would be dis- be ready to receive them. Port command-
patched from technical service depots, or ers, and they alone, were in a position to
when it would arrive. At the outset many state when shipments should be made and
shipments of impedimenta to the ports to which facilities at the ports they should
were inadequately marked, so that identi- be delivered. Authority to control these
fication of particular items with particular movements had been vested in the port
units was slow and sometimes impossible. commanders in Janury 1942, as a result of
The processing of unboxed equipment at the confusion that followed the uncon-
home stations was inadequate or entirely trolled shipment of impedimenta to San
lacking, with the result that shipments Francisco during the early weeks of U.S.
were damaged en route, particularly when participation in the war.196
they were transported overseas as deck Complete understanding between port
cargoes. Packaging frequently did not commanders, unit commanders, and tech-
meet the test of transshipment at loading nical service chiefs regarding shipments of
and discharge ports. Advices from ports of equipment to the seaboard was sometimes
embarkation to the theater commanders difficult to achieve. Unit commanders did
sometimes failed to give sufficient infor- not always know in advance exactly how
mation regarding the equipment on a much of their old equipment would be
particular vessel and the manner of its taken overseas. The technical services
stowage to enable the port of destination often were not given sufficient time to
to plan ahead for its discharge and make shipments from their depots, and
disposition.195 194
Memo, CofT for ACofS OPD, 23 Jan 43, sub:
The efforts to cope with these problems Issuance of Mvmt Orders; Memo, CG SOS for CofT,
fall into two distinct categories. In the first 26 Jan 43; both in OCT 370.5 Mvmt Orders (1).
195
were measures taken toward better prep- Memo, TAG for Cs of Supply Arms and Svs, 17
aration in the zone of interior for handling Jan 42, sub: Shipts to PEs; Memo, TAG for CG Field
Forces, et al., 19 Jan 42, sub: Equip of Troops; Ltr,
movements of impedimenta, including CofS for CG WDC, 13 Mar 42; all in G-4/33889;
clearer instructions to all concerned. In Memo, CofT for PEs, 12 Apr 42, Org and Trans of
the second category were adjustments Task Forces, 196
OCT 370.5 (Jan-May 42).
Memo, TAG for CofAAF, et al., 2 Jan 42, AG
made in procedures to meet conditions 370.5(1-1-42).
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 151

sometimes the requisitioned items were turn in at their home stations all general
not immediately available. In addition to purpose and special purpose vehicles that
impressing upon unit commanders and did not meet certain specifications as to
technical service chiefs the necessity of age and condition, and to notify the ap-
providing the ports with prompt and full propriate technical services by the fastest
information regarding all shipments, SOS means of communication regarding the
headquarters directed the Chief of Trans- shortages to be made up. Units might re-
portation to have his port commanders ceive vehicles to fill these shortages at their
maintain close liaison with the sources home stations, at the ports of embarka-
from which equipment would move.197 In tion, or after arrival overseas. The chiefs
some cases representatives of the ports of the technical services were directed to
were sent to home stations to assist unit establish pools of vehicles in the zone of
personnel in organizing and loading their interior and in the principal theaters for
impedimenta. this purpose. As it worked out, general
Early in 1943, when it was learned that purpose vehicles were usually supplied to
some units had sailed for North Africa the units after their arrival in the theaters.
with elaborate office furniture, housekeep- This arrangement made possible the ship-
ing supplies, and other nonessential items, ment of a considerable percentage of such
the Chief of Transportation recommended vehicles partially knocked down and
that in view of the shortage of ships the boxed, in which condition they required
major commands examine the tables of only about one third as much space as
basic allowances and designate the items when they were fully assembled.200 Also,
that should be left behind when units when vehicles were shipped boxed the
moved overseas. Some months later the ports were relieved of the task of process-
War Department took steps to regulate ing them.
the amount of station equipment that The processing of vehicles at the ports
might be shipped overseas on requisitions to prevent deterioration during the voyage
from theater commanders.198 became a large undertaking. Although
Automotive vehicles constituted a major their authority was uncertain in the begin-
element of the organizational equipment ning, all ports found themselves doing
of most troop units. They also were a a certain amount of processing because
troublesome element. By the time a unit it had not been done at home stations or
had completed training many of its ve- depots. The San Francisco Port of Embar-
hicles were unfit for service in a theater of kation, which had bitter experience in
operations and had to be repaired or re- shipping unprocessed vehicles and tanks
placed either at the home station or at the 197
Memo, CG SOS for Cs of Tech Svs, 3 Oct 42,
port of embarkation. Also, when vehicles sub: Supply of Troops at PEs, OCT HB Gross Ports.
accompanied troops they required exten- 198
Memo, CofT for ACofS OPD, 3 Feb 43, sub:
sive processing to prevent deterioration Imped for Overseas Troops, OCT HB Meyer Stay-
backs; WD Memo W 210-24-43, 7 Sep 43, sub: Ship-
during the voyage. After some months of ment of Post, Camp, and Station Equip.
experience explicit instructions were 199
WD Memo W 850-19-42, 27 Nov 42, sub:
issued to deal with this situation. 199 Units Supply and Distribution of Automotive Equip.
200
Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 5 Dec 43, sub: Ship-
ordered overseas were required, unless ment of Boxed Vehicles, OCT HB Wylie Shipping
otherwise directed in movement orders, to and Cargo for UK 1943-44.
152 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

to Pacific bases during the early months of rope, the port of embarkation at New
the war, took the lead in setting up a well- York passed the largest number of vehicles
equipped processing plant at Emeryville, through its processing plant, which was
on the eastern shore of San Francisco Bay located at Port Johnston on the New Jer-
not far from the Oakland Army base. As sey side of New York Harbor. The peak
soon as the authority of the ports had been was reached in May 1944, when 9,550 ve-
definitely established, the Chief of Trans- hicles were serviced. From incomplete
portation requested the other port com- records it appears that the same month
manders to establish similar facilities.201 marked the peak at Emeryville, with
The initial purpose of processing was to 3,391 vehicles serviced.203 The plants op-
seal or insulate the machinery against rust erated on an assembly-line basis and, in
and corrosion and to board up the ex- addition to processing vehicles for ship-
posed glass surfaces against breakage. ment, they made repairs within the capa-
When it was found that tools and spare bility of their facilities. The object was to
parts that should have accompanied the have the vehicles ready for service with a
equipment did not arrive overseas, either minimum of attention after arrival in the
because they were not shipped or because theaters.
they were removed en route, the ports Ports of embarkation kept meticulous
were instructed to establish the presence records of troop equipment, for they had
of these items before processing and to box to know at all times what equipment was
them in so securely that pilferage would being shipped for particular units, where
be difficult. it was located, and when it would be
Most of the equipment was procured by loaded into ships.204 Maintaining records
the Ordnance Department, and the port for these purposes was complicated by the
ordnance officers were in charge of the number of units moving simultaneously,
processing plants. In the beginning these the great variety of impedimenta to be
officers were left largely to their own de- handled, amendments to movement or-
vices, and the Chief of Transportation ders affecting dates of shipment, lack of
came to the conclusion that there was 201
Memo, CofT for PEs, 7 Oct 42, sub: Shipment
overprocessing at some ports. In July 1943 of Motor Vehicles, Memo, CofT for PEs, 21 Dec 42,
he pointed out to the Chief of Ordnance sub: Ordnance Maintenance at Ports; both in OCT
that, although the complaints from over- HB PE Gen Troop Equip; WD Memo W 850-19-42,
seas regarding vehicles arriving in bad 27 Nov 42, par. 12; WD Cir 14, 8 Jan 43, Sec. II; WD
Cir 150, 2 Jul 43, Sec. III; WD Cir 175, 30 Jul 43, Sec.
condition had almost ceased, there was V; ASF Cir 76, 15 Mar 44, Sec. V.
202
still room for refinement in the methods Memo, CofT for CofOrd, 22 Jul 43, sub: Stand-
because of the differing conditions affect- ards of Performance; Memo, Meyer for CG NYPE,
31 Jul 43, sub: Preparation of Unboxed Vehicles; both
ing equipment in the various theaters and in OCT HB Meyer Staybacks.
the differing requirements for shipments 203
NYPE monthly report, Progress and Activities,
stowed in the hold and on deck. The Chief Jun 44, p. 64; (report also gives data for engineer vehi-
cles processed by the port engineer); SFPE Quarterly
of Ordnance was therefore requested to Progress Rpt, Oct-Dec 44, p. 53; these and similar
develop standards for processing that reports for other periods are in OCT HB files for
would take these differences into ac- respective ports.
204
Memo, CofT for Contl Div ASF, 7 Jun 43, sub:
count.202 Records of Org Equip, OCT HB PE Gen Troop
Because of the heavy shipments to Eu- Equip.
PROCESSING TROOP EQUIPMENT before shipment overseas. Vehicles awaiting
attention at the motor inspection base, Emeryville, California (above); processing ramps at Port
Johnston, Bayonne, New Jersey (below).
154 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

information regarding the items actually shipments of equipment therefore were


forwarded from home stations and depots, avoided whenever possible.208
and the inability of some unit command- Both in the Office of the Chief of Trans-
ers to state exactly what impedimenta portation and at the ports of embarkation
would accompany them overseas because special personnel was required to super-
205
of changing tables of equipment. Grad- vise the handling of troop equipment. The
ually the Chief of Transportation devel- Movements Division, OCT, set up a sep-
oped a plan of complete and uniform arate unit for this purpose in December
records for all ports that would show at all 1943 and placed in charge an officer who
times what was to be shipped and what had had extensive experience with ship-
had been shipped. 206 If part of the initial ments of impedimenta at San Francisco.
equipment had not been dispatched when This unit, which eventually became
the troops sailed, as was often the case, the known as the Troop Equipment Branch,
ports of embarkation were required to ad- dealt with all aspects of the subject from
vise the theaters when the remainder the time the movement orders were writ-
would be dispatched so that the theater ten until the equipment and troops were
commanders would not submit requisi- brought together overseas.209 At the New
tions for those items. The port command- York Port of Embarkation, where the
ers were also responsible for advising ASF traffic was heaviest, movements of impedi-
headquarters when further shipments of menta were supervised by the Initial
equipment from the zone of interior Troop Equipment Division, which was co-
should be stopped and theater command- ordinate with the Troop Movement Divi-
ers requested to supply the outstanding sion and other operating divisions. At San
items.207 Francisco and other ports, movements of
The Chief of Transportation investi- troops and troop equipment came under
gated the possibility of relieving the main the jurisdiction of the same division, but
ports through which the larger troop
movements passed of the necessity of han- 205
Memo, Wylie for Ross, CofT ETOUSA, 26 May
dling all of the organizational equipment 43, OCT HB Wylie Staybacks; Memo, CofT for Dir
for those movements. In shipping mainte- of Opns ASF, 11 Jun 43, OCT HB Meyer Staybacks.
206
TC Cir 15, 2 Feb 43, sub: Shipt of Task Force
nance supplies, specific ports were Units; TC Cir 56, 27 Apr 43; OCT Cir 95, 26 Jul 43,
responsible for controlling all movements sub: Records of Ships; TC Cir 100-2, 4 Apr 44; TC
to specific theaters, but they allocated the Cir 100-3, 4 Apr 44.
207
SOS Memo S 700-1-43, 2 Jan 43, sub: Cancella-
actual loading of part of the supplies to tion of Back Orders; Memo, CofT for PEs, 6 Sep 44,
other ports, known as outports. The move- sub: Clearance of Shipts from PEs, OCT 400.7.
208
ment of troop equipment, however, in- Memo, CofT for Col William E. Carraway, Plng
Div ASF, 4 Apr 43, OCT HB Farr Staybacks; Memo,
volved a different set of circumstances. CofT for CGs NYPE and HRPE, 17 Jul 43, sub: For-
The flow of the impedimenta for a partic- warding of Equip; Memo, CG NYPE for Port Trans
ular unit had so many sources, extended Div, 26 Jul 43; last two in OCT 045.0 UGF 10; Re-
marks by Col Berzelius at Mtg of Port Comdrs and
over so long a period, and was subject to Opng Representatives, 8 Jul 44, in Min of Port and
so many uncertainties that splitting the Zone Comdrs Conf, Chicago, 6-9 Jul 44, p. 17, OCT
movement among several ports and yet HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf.
209
Remarks by Col Berzelius, C of Troop Equip Br,
maintaining complete and up-to-date rec- at Junior Officers Meeting, Mvmts Div, 16 Oct 44,
ords presented formidable obstacles. Split OCT HB Mvmt Div Gen.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 155

separate groups of personnel were assigned possible to plan in advance where particu-
210
to perform the separate functions. lar vessels would be discharged. At this
Clear instructions to explain procedures period some items were not available for
and establish the responsibility of all con- shipment until long after the troops had
cerned were necessary to the efficient departed. Consequently, a considerable
movement of troop impedimenta just as amount of equipment was sent to depots
they were to the movement of the troops in the United Kingdom, where related
themselves. The basic instructions were items were brought together before they
included in the War Department publica- were assigned to troop units. Under these
tion, Preparation for Overseas Movement. circumstances from one to three months
Further instructions were included in the often elapsed between the arrival of the
supplementary pamphlet, Identification troops and their receipt of complete equip-
of Organizational Impedimenta, which ment.
211
was issued in August 1943. The detailed With a view to correcting the situation
directions given in the latter pamphlet and at the same time utilizing some cargo
emphasize the importance that was at- shipping that the British were expected to
tached to the correct marking of such provide, G-4 proposed that at least half of
shipments and to maintaining full and ac- the equipment of eight divisions scheduled
curate records in accomplishing the to sail during the summer be shipped in
orderly flow of organizational equipment. bulk about a month in advance of the
troops. There were some objections to the
The second aspect of the problem of plan. The AGF was uncertain of the effect
moving troop equipment to the theaters of such an arrangement on the training
was to adapt the procedures to differing and morale of the divisions; the troop
conditions in the several oversea areas. basis was not considered firm; the theater
During the spring and early summer of was fearful that placing so much equip-
1942, when a feverish effort was being ment in its depots without unit marking
made to build up American strength in and issuing it to the troops from stock
the United Kingdom against the possi- might involve too much delay. OPD there-
bility of an invasion of the Continent in fore did not concur in the proposal, and
the fall, the movement of troop impedi- strategic developments made it necessary
menta was a major consideration. Many to use the British vessels elsewhere, so that
items of equipment were in short supply, the planlater known as preshipment
and organizational equipment had to be
held until troops were about to leave their 210
home stations in order for them to com- Remarks by Col Henry J. Amy, C of Initial
Troop Equip Div NYPE, at Mtg of Port Opn, Troop
plete their training. Unit loading was im- Mvmt and Equip Representatives, 8 Jul 44, in Min
possible because a large percentage of the of Port and Zone Comdrs Conf, Chicago, 6-9 Jul 44,
troops were dispatched in vessels that pp. 39-45, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf; Pre-
liminary Rpt, Control and Handling of Force-Marked
had limited cargo capacity. The ships of Equip at NYPE, 16-26 May 44; Rpt of Survey, Con-
the convoys in which most of the equip- trol and Handling of Force-Marked Equip at SFPE,
ment moved were distributed among the 4-15 Jun 44; last two in OCT HB PE Gen Troop
Equip.
British ports according to conditions at 211
Copies of POM and IOI are in OCT HB PE
the time of their arrival, so that it was im- Gen Troop Mvmt to Port.
156 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

did not go into effect in 1942.212 chance of solving this difficult problem.
In the winter of 1942-43, when the There were still some who feared undesir-
North African campaign held priority able consequences from withdrawing
over the build-up in the United Kingdom, equipment from troops four to six weeks
much the same condition prevailed with ahead of their departure from training
respect to troop equipment. Many ship- stations. But the decision was turned in
ments were late in reaching the ports of favor of preshipment by the fact that in
embarkation and consequently were late April 1943 an adequate supply of cargo
in being transshipped overseas. The troops space was assured and British ports were
and their impedimenta usually were then capable of handling increased ship-
shipped in different vessels, and the prob- ments. It was realized, moreover, that the
lem of getting the two together in the accumulation of large stocks in the United
theater persisted. Officers in North Africa Kingdom during 1943 would relieve the
felt that they were not being adequately strain on shipping and on the ports that
informed regarding the status of ship- would inevitably develop as the date for
ments of equipment. When General the invasion of the Continentthen set
Somervell visited the theater after the for the spring of 1944approached. In
Casablanca Conference, he heard strong May 1943, therefore, preshipment on as
complaints on these matters and requested broad a scale as possible was decreed.214
an explanation from the Chief of Trans- 212
portation. In response, the Chief of Trans- Memo within OCT, Lt Col Norman H. Visser-
ing for Col Noble M. Coe, 5 Jun 42, sub: Shortage of
portation stated that every effort was Equip, OCT HB PE Gen Troop Equip; Msgs, Mar-
being made to get equipment to the ports shall to USFOR London, 4 Jun 42, CM-OUT 0786,
and ship it as promptly as possible, and to and 17 Jun 42, CM-OUT 4300; Memo, ACofS OPD
for ACofS G-4, 10 Jul 42, sub: Shipts in Bulk, OPD
notify the theater commanders when de- 520; Rpt of ETO General Board, Study 128, sub:
layed items would be forwarded; he did Logistical Build-up in the British Isles, pp. 21-23;
not consider it advisable, however, to give Leighton and Coakley, op. cit., Ch. XIV, pp. 33-48.
213
Memo, Somervell for Gross, 19 Feb 43, pars.
such notification until the ship on which 1(3)-(4); Memo, Gross for Somervell, 23 Feb 43, pars.
the equipment would move had been 1e-f; both in OCT HB Ex File Somervell's Insp Trip
definitely nominated.213 No solution to the to Africa.
214
The documentation is voluminous and the fol-
problem was found during the North lowing citations are given chiefly to show the TC
African campaign. position: 4th Ind, CofT for ACofS for Opns ASF, 4
Preshipment, or the shipment of or- Apr 43, OCT HB Meyer Staybacks; Memo, Meyer
for Wylie, 9 Apr 43, giving review of developments to
ganizational equipment and supplies in date, OCT HB Wylie Cargo; Memo, CofT for Somer-
bulk ahead of troops, became an ap- vell, 9 Apr 43, sub: Data on Shipping, with attach-
proved policy in the spring of 1943, when ment entitled Special Problems in UK Build-up,
OCT HB Wylie Shipping Reqmts and Allocations
the build-up of forces in the United King- 1943; Memo, Gross for Styer, 12 Apr 43, sub: Visit of
dom was resumed in volume. Conditions Gen Lee, OCT HB Meyer Staybacks; Memo, Gross
that had prevented its execution in 1942 for Lutes, 16 Apr 43, sub: Cargo for UK, OCT HB
Wylie Staybacks; Memo, ACofS for Opns ASF for
the scarcity of many items, the acute Gross, 17 Apr 43, sub: Cargo for UK, OCT HB Wylie
shortage of cargo shipping, and the un- Shipping and Cargo for UK 1943-44; Memo, ACofS
certainty of the troop basishad by this for Opns ASF for Dir Stock Contl Div ASF, 17 Apr
43, sub: Cargo Ships to UK, OCT HB Wylie Cargo;
time been alleviated. The Chief of Trans- Rad, CG ASF for ETO, 20 Apr 43, CM-OUT 8165;
portation saw in preshipment the best Memo, Farr for Gross, 1 May 43; Memo, Gross for
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 157

During the ensuing year the preship- ready to fight within fifteen days after
ment plan was found an effective means of landing. This meant that the troop equip-
assuring that troops arriving in the United ment would have to be accumulated and
Kingdom got their equipment promptly. consolidated in the zone of interior, then
Gradually a larger and larger percentage convoy loaded so that the entire equip-
of the matriel was shipped to the ports of ment of a unit would arrive in the theater
embarkation by the procuring services at about the same time and almost simul-
rather than by the units' home stations. taneously with the troops.
The Chief of Transportation maintained Several possibilities were considered in
an unrelenting pressure on these sources selecting a place where equipment could
to insure that shipments did not lag, and be accumulated. The ports of embarka-
on the War Shipping Administration to tion were ruled out because they did not
insure that enough shipping to lift the have the necessary space. Home stations
cargoes was allocated. His Water Division were not considered favorably because
reported almost daily on the outlook for they were mostly in the south and south-
both ships and cargo, and this report was west and much of the equipment would
the basis for aggressive action to keep the have to be shipped to them from depots
two in balance.215 During 1943 the more and manufacturers in the northeast and
serious problem was to get sufficient cargo then backhauled to the North Atlantic
delivered to the ports to fill the scheduled ports of embarkation. The Chief of Trans-
ships, but after the priority of the Euro- portation therefore urged that the Elmira
pean theater for both organizational Holding and Reconsignment Point in cen-
equipment and maintenance supplies was tral New York be used for this purpose. In
raised at the end of that year, the problem addition to having adequate space, the in-
was essentially one of keeping the flow of stallation was so situated that shipments
cargo to the seaboard within the capacity could be effected quickly to both New
of the available shipping.216 York and Boston, the ports through which
Although the practice of preshipping the bulk of the equipment was to move.
organizational equipment and supplies This plan was approved by the War De-
was admirably suited to the build-up of partment in the early summer. 217
strength in the United Kingdom, which 215
Some of these reports are in OCT HB Wylie
was a well-organized noncombat area, a Shipping and Cargoes for UK 1943-44.
216
different system was required when the Joseph Bykofsky and Harold Larson, The Trans-
portation Corps: Operations Overseas, a volume in
forces moved to the Continent. In the preparation for this series, Ch. III; Roland G. Rup-
spring of 1944, with D Day set for early penthal, Logistical Support of the Armies, Volume I:
June, the European Theater of Opera- May 1941-September 1944, UNITED STATES ARMY
IN WORLD WAR II (Washington, 1953), Ch. VI.
tions requested that all troop units arriv- 217
Memo, Farr for Plng Div ASF, 27 Apr 44, sub:
ing from the United States after D plus 90 Shipping of Units, OCT HB Farr Staybacks; Remarks
be debarked on the Continent and be by Col Farr at Mtg of Port Opn, Troop Mvmt, and
Equip Representatives, 8 July 44, in Min of Port and
Zone Comdrs Conf, Chicago, 6-9 Jul 44, pp. 15-19,
Somervell, 2 May 43; Memo, CG NYPE for CofT, OCT HB PE Gen Port Comdrs Conf; Memo, Farr for
2 May 43; last three in OCT HB Wylie Cargo; AG Wylie, 14 Jul 44, OCT 337 Elmira H&RP; Rpt
Memo 400.22 (5-16-43), 16 May 43, sub: SOP for attached to Memo by Capt James M. Walls, 16 Jun
Shipments of Equip and Supplies to UK; AG Memo 45, included in Mvmt Div Hist, OCT HB Mvmt Div
400.22 (1 Jun 44), 2 Jan 44, sub: Change in SOP. Gen.
158 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

The purpose of the new project at Division, OCT, which gave it general
Elmira, which eventually became known supervision.
as the Northeast Equipment Staging From the time it was established in the
Area, was to "receive, document, assem- summer of 1944 until February 1945 when
ble, consolidate, prepare for shipment, it was discontinued, the equipment stag-
and ship" to the ports the organizational ing area at Elmira handled matriel for
equipment and supplies forwarded to that units embracing more than 700,000
installation under War Department move- troops. The liaison officers of some units
ment orders. Shipments to the ports were who went to Elmira to assist in identifying
to be made immediately upon receipt of and segregating the equipment of their
218
calls from the port commanders. The respective organizations reported that
matriel sent to Elmira embraced all items there was considerable confusion during
procured by the Army Service Forces September and early October resulting in
(other than general purpose vehicles) that a "serious mixing of property." The
could not reach the home stations of the opinion was expressed that equipment
respective units before established dead- should be staged nearer the ports and
line dates. under the control of the port command-
The task imposed upon the equipment ers.220 Nevertheless, the equipment stag-
staging area proved to be a very consider- ing area served a useful purpose. It re-
able one, for among the several hundred lieved home stations of the heavy task of
units that were dispatched to the Euro- receiving, consolidating, and shipping this
pean theater between August 1944 and equipment. It enabled technical service
February 1945 were thirty-six divisions. depots to avoid congestion by dispatching
Frequently more than 150 carloads of equipment as soon as it was ready rather
freight were handled (unloaded or loaded) than holding it until the port call was re-
during a single day, and on several oc- ceived. It absorbed the shock that the
casions the number exceeded 250 car- ports would otherwise have felt when the
loads.219 sailing dates of units were changed. The
September 1944 proved to be the most accumulation of equipment at a point
difficult month, for not only were the staff where shipments could be made equally
and the procedures relatively untried at well to either New York or Boston as cir-
that time but a number of large units, in- cumstances might require proved ad-
cluding two divisions, were required to vantageous. After the difficulty experi-
sail earlier than had been planned. Dur- enced during the early fall, the operation
ing that month a considerable backlog of at Elmira proceeded smoothly and ship-
cars developed, and as a result of the con- ments to the ports were made promptly.
gestion some shipments did not reach port 218
TC Cir 5-20, 4 Nov 44, sub: Northeast Equip
in time for dispatch with the convoys for Staging Area; Min of Mtg at Elmira, 5 Sep 44, sub:
which they were scheduled. This conges- Processing Troop Equip Under the Red Lists, OCT
HB Zones Gen Elmira H&RP; Memo, CofT for
tion had been cleared up by mid-October NYPE, BPE, Elmira H&RP, 26 Oct 44, sub: Red List
through special efforts of the commander Procedures, OCT HB Meyer Staybacks.
219
of the Elmira Holding and Reconsignment A list of cars on hand, loaded, and unloaded will
be found in OCT HB Zones Gen Elmira H&RP.
Point, who had charge of the equipment 220
Memo, NYPE for CofT, 14 Oct 44, OCT HB
staging operation, and the Movements Meyer Staybacks.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 159

Indeed, Colonel Farr expressed doubt the one hand, a greater percentage of the
whether the urgent requests from the troops moved to Pacific destinations in
theater to advance the departure dates of relatively small units and more of the
numerous units could have been fulfilled troopships had substantial cargo capacity,
without this equipment staging area.221 making unit loading possible more often.
In order that troop units might be fully On the other hand, the military situation
equipped and ready to fight soon after ar- in the Pacific was more fluid, and the
rival in the European theater, it was nec- practice of diverting ships from their origi-
essary to impress into service as many fast nal destinations to widely scattered bases
cargo ships as could be spared from other was more disturbing to planned move-
urgent tasks. These vessels, sailing east- ments. After Generals Somervell and
bound in fast (14-knot) convoys, reduced Gross had visited the Pacific theaters in the
by several days the time required for the fall of 1943 and had listened to complaints
delivery of equipment to British and about the late arrival of organizational
French ports in slow convoys. The turn- equipment and the spreading of ship-
around of the ships was shortened by per- ments over many vessels, increased efforts
mitting them to make the homeward voy- were made to improve the procedures.224
age unescorted. This fast service to the In 1943 the Transportation Corps and
ETO began soon after the invasion of the also General Somervell favored the pre-
Continent and continued until the heavy shipment of troop equipment to the
movement of units to that theater had Pacific, but the ASF Supply Division was
been completed. In cases of special ur- already hard pressed to find enough ma-
gency, equipment was sent directly to the triel to carry out the program of preship-
ports of embarkation rather than through ment to the United Kingdom and did not
the equipment staging area at Elmira. To want to assume this further obligation.225
avoid delay in delivering equipment to Accordingly, improvement in the delivery
troop units after their arrival on the Con- 221
Memo, Farr for Historical Unit OCT, 20 Jun
tinent, the impedimenta of a particular 45, sub: History, par. 3, OCT HB Mvmt Div Rpts;
unit was loaded in the fewest possible ASF Annual Report for the Fiscal Year 1945 (Washing-
ton, 1946), p. 55.
ships even though this resulted in poor 222
Memo, CofT for COMINCH US Fleet, 23 Aug
stowage and sacrifice of cargo space. In 44, sub: Unescorted Fast Freighters, OCT HB Farr
this instance military considerations re- Staybacks; Memo, CofT for Mobilization Div ASF,
8 Sep 44, sub: Red List Procedures, OCT 322 Red
quired a sacrifice of the principle of good List Units; Msg, Lt Gen Thomas T. Handy to Hq
stowage, which the Chief of Transporta- COMZONE ETO, CG AFHQ, Italy, CG NYPE, 1
tion otherwise endeavored to enforce.222 Oct 44, WARX 39841; Memo, CofS ASF for Dir
Plans and Opns ASF, 26 Dec 44, ASF Hq CofSDir
During the five-month period August- of Plans and Opns.
December 1944, 108 vessels carrying 223
ASF MPR, Dec 44, p. 56; Memo, CofT for
chiefly organizational equipment were Styer, 5 Feb 45, sub: Org Equip Ships, OCT HB Farr
dispatched to the ETO; data for later sail- Staybacks.
224
Memos, Gross for Wylie, 26 Sep 43 and 6 Oct
ings of this type were not found. 223 43, OCT HB Wylie Ltrs from Gross.
225
The problems in the Pacific relating to 1st Ind, ACofT for CG ASF, 11 Oct 43; Memo,
the shipment of organizational equipment Meyer for Wylie, 14 Oct 43; both in OCT HB Meyer
Staybacks; ASF Staff Conf, 6 Nov 43, p. 3, OCT HB
were similar to those in the Atlantic, but ASF; Memo, Farr for Wylie, 2 Dec 43, OCT HB Farr
there were certain basic differences. On Staybacks.
160 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

of troop equipment to the Pacific areas units, like all other units, had to be dealt
depended on the establishment of closer with according to the established priori-
liaison and better understanding between ties. Some delays were traceable to the
the ports of embarkation and the theater inability of the AAF to release equipment
commands, and on the employment of to the ports sufficiently in advance of the
unit loading wherever possible. When an troops. When the theaters diverted ships
equipment staging area was set up near from the discharge ports for which they
the east coast of the United States in 1944, were originally destined, there were
it was believed that a similar procedure usually compelling local reasons. In the
would be introduced eventually on the spring of 1944 the commanding general of
west coast. This did not transpire, chiefly the Army Air Forces proposed to the com-
because the situation in the Pacific never manding general of the Army Service
called for as concentrated a movement of Forces that matriel procured by the ASF
troops and equipment as that which at- technical services for AAF units be routed
tended the invasion of the European con- through the AAF intransit depots. The
tinent. The western holding and recon- ASF did not concur since it did not believe
signment points, however, served in a that this change of procedure would over-
227
limited way as assembly points for troop come the difficulties.
equipment destined for San Francisco,
Los Angeles, and Seattle for transship- The task of getting organizational
ment to the Pacific bases.226 equipment to the theaters so that the
The procedure for handling equipment troops could have it soon after their ar-
procured by the Air Service Command for rival proved a challenging one. A basic
AAF units was somewhat different from difficulty was the impracticability from a
that for equipment procured by the Army shipping standpoint of moving troops and
Service Forces. Throughout the war such their impedimenta in the same vessels.
equipment was sent to AAF intransit The frequent necessity of changing the
depots near the ports, where it was as- discharge ports of cargo vessels after they
sembled and processed before being for- had reached the theaters was a disturbing
warded to the water ports of embarkation. factor. During the early part of the war
These intransit depots were justified by the situation was further complicated by
the AAF on the ground that distinctive the scarcity of some items of equipment
Air Forces matriel required special han- 226
Memo, CofT for SFPE, SPE, LAPE, 30 Oct 44,
dling and technical treatment. sub: Diversion of Certain Shipments to HRP, OCT
The AAF complained repeatedly that HB Meyer Staybacks.
227
equipment and supplies procured by the Memo, Gross for Somervell, 23 Feb 43, OCT
HB Ex File Somervell's Trip to Africa; Memos, Farr
ASF technical services failed to reach AAF for Gross, 1 and 5 May 43; both in OCT HB Farr
units overseas promptly. These units were Staybacks; Memo, CG AAF for CG ASF, 19 Jun 43,
expected to be ready for combat service and reply, 26 Jun 43; both in OCT 475 Oversea
Equip Left Behind; Memo, CG AAF for CG ASF, 1
soon after arrival in the theaters and the Apr 44, and replies, 3 and 4 Apr 44; all three in OCT
ASF endeavored to overcome the delays, HB Meyer Staybacks; 1st Ind, CG ASF for CG AAF,
but some of the causes were not easy to 6 Apr 44; Memo, C of Traf Div AAF for ACofT, 29
May 44, sub: Baylor Committee Findings, and reply,
control. When stocks were short or ship- 1 Jun 44; last three in OCT 475 Oversea Equip Left
ping was inadequate for all needs, AAF Behind.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 161

and the over-all shortage of shipping. mined almost entirely by Army require-
Gradual improvement was achieved ments. The Chief of Transportation's
through the establishment of standard pro- Movements Division, in consultation with
cedures, careful planning by the Chief of the Water Division and the ports of em-
Transportation's Movements Division and barkation, endeavored to work out a pro-
the ports of embarkation, and close co- gram of sailings that would take care of
ordination between the port commanders, the Army personnel expected to move and
the commanders of units, the technical at the same time meet the Navy's needs.
services, and the theaters. The most com- When the Navy desired to move personnel
plete solution was recognized to be the to an oversea station, the Naval Transpor-
shipment of equipment to the theaters in tation Service filed a request with the
advance of the troops. This plan presup- Army Chief of Transportation, who
posed, however, a stable and well-or- allotted space on scheduled sailings in ac-
229
ganized base, such as existed in the United cordance with the approved priorities.
Kingdom during the build-up of strength Although adjustments in the schedules
for the invasion of the Continent, as well were sometimes necessary because of the
as adequate equipment and shipping. Un- Navy's requirements, this was not often
fortunately, those conditions did not suffi- the case.
ciently apply to any other oversea areas to All troopships serving the Pacific areas
warrant the adoption of a broad program were regarded as a single pool and their
of preshipment. scheduling and utilization were under
joint management.230 This pool included
Joint Use of Troopships the owned and the chartered transports
by the Armed Services operated by the Army or the Navy, the
transports assigned to the Army by the War
Since both the Army and the Navy Shipping Administration and operated for
were constantly moving personnel to the the Army by naval personnel, and those
same theaters, economy of shipping dic- operated by agents of the WSA and
tated that all troop transports should be allocated to the Army or the Navy. Act-
available to the troops of both services. ing in accordance with general plans and
Some of the problems that arose in con- instructions agreed on by the Joint Chiefs
nection with the allocation and scheduling of Staff and the Joint Military Transporta-
of the vessels because of joint utilization tion Committee in Washington, the Joint
228
have already been discussed. Other Army-Navy Surface Personnel Com-
problems in the joint use of troopships mittee, with headquarters at San Fran-
concern principally the Pacific, for in that cisco, determined the loading ports and
area the command setup was more com- 228
See above, pp. 93-94.
plex, the strategic situation was more 229
For example, Memo, CofT for NTS, 22 May 43,
fluid, and the forces of the Navy and the sub: Trans of Naval Pers, OCT 370.5 Mvmt BLOT;
Memo, NTS for OCT, 22 May 43, sub: Oversea
Marine Corps were larger than in theaters Trans for Naval Pers, and reply, 31 May 43; last two
across the Atlantic. in OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
230
In the Atlantic, where the Navy used a Joint use of ships was practiced from the begin-
ning of the war, but it increased after formal agree-
relatively small amount of troop space, ments were made during the first half of 1943; see
the troopship sailing schedules were deter- Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 170-72.
162 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

sailing dates as well as the assignment of isfaction in the Office of the Chief of
troop space. The Joint Army-Navy-WSA Transportation because of the lack of a
Ship Operations Committee, also located closely integrated control over the move-
at San Francisco, determined such matters ment of ships and troops in the Pacific.
as the utilization of piers, ship repair facil- The OCT believed that troopships were
ities, and labor. These west coast com- being detained on the Pacific coast longer
mittees therefore exercised a broad control than was necessary, with not enough pres-
over the employment of troopships and sure being put on the completion of re-
the movement of troops and troop equip- pairs and on quick turnaround at the
ment.231 The commander of the San Fran- loading port.233 Sufficient advance notice
cisco Port of Embarkation represented the could not be obtained regarding the pro-
Army or designated the representatives of spective sailings of APA's and other naval
the Army in these joint activities. combatant ships to permit arrangements
Despite the fact that the joint com- to be made for the full utilization of their
mittees functioned smoothly and with passenger capacities.234 The estimates of
considerable effectiveness, the Army Chief troopship capabilities and requirements
of Transportation did not like the arrange- prepared by the Army and the Navy were
ment. The basic reason was that it in- difficult to harmonize because of the dif-
volved a decentralization of control and ferent approaches to the subject.235 The
interfered with the plan of centralized Navy's lack of central control over the
control on which the Transportation Corps flow of personnel to the embarkation ports
operated. General Gross favored the de- created a demand for more staging ca-
centralization of technical operating func- pacity at the ports than otherwise would
tions and carried the doctrine into effect have been necessary.236
by a broad delegation of operating re- Additional difficulties from the point of
sponsibilities to his field representatives. view of the Chief of Transportation arose
On the other hand, he regarded the ex- from the independent action of the over-
ercise of central control by his office over sea commands, particularly the Pacific
the employment of the means of transpor- 231
tation necessary to the economical use of Memo, Farr for Wylie, 15 Nov 44, sub: Control
of Shipping in the Pacific, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen;
those means, and similar control of troop Min of Mtgs of Joint Army-Navy Surface Personnel
and freight movements necessary to the Committee are filed in OCT 334 JANSPC.
232
close co-ordination of inland and ocean Duncan S. Ballantine, U.S. Naval Logistics in the
Second World War (Princeton: Princeton University
transportation and the avoidance of de- Press, 1947), pp. 229-33.
lays. Naval logistics was characterized by 233
Memo, Farr for Wylie, 15 Nov 44, par. 7, cited
greater decentralization, and the Navy n. 231; Memo, Farr for Wylie, 16 Mar 45, sub: Utili-
zation of Troopships, OCT 565.2.
was unwilling to attempt to revamp its 234
See n. 23, above; Memo, Gross for Somervell, 31
system during wartime.232 The Army Dec 43, sub: Basis of Allocation, OCT HB Wylie
refused to accord as much independence Army vs Navy; Memo, Farr for Wylie, 15 Nov 44,
par. 8 and summary 5, cited n. 231.
to the west coast committees as the Navy 235
Memo Meyer for Gross, 10 Jan 43, sub: Troop-
desired, but it found no alternative to ship Capacities, OCT HB Meyer Staybacks.
236
going along with the plan in general. Memo, Wylie for Wood, 24 May 44, sub:
Greenslade Rpt, and atchd comment on Appendix
A number of specific complaints may E, Recommendation 3, OCT HB Port Capacity and
be cited as evidence of the general dissat- Utilization.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 163

Ocean Areas, in diverting troopships and that they had not been receiving. The
retaining them for intratheater use with- plan was given careful consideration in
out approval from Washington.237 Troop the Office of the Chief of Transportation
lift was needed in the theaters for the as- and a tentative organizational chart was
sault and support operations that were drawn up, but in the end the creation of
being mounted there, and the theater such an office was disapproved because of
commanders retained vessels that had ar- the possibility of conflict between it and
rived from the zone of interior in order to the San Francisco Port of Embarkation.238
make those operations successful. Such In the beginning the joint utilization of
retentions obviously were disturbing to troopships in the Pacific was beset with
the planners in Washington, who were en- frequent misunderstandings because of
deavoring to work out a balanced and the lack of joint priority lists for the move-
well-timed program of troop movements ment of Army and Navy personnel. With-
from U.S. ports. Another disturbing factor out such lists the assignment of troop
from the standpoint of central planning space and the distribution of the inevita-
and control was the lack of information ble deficit in troop lift could not be equita-
from the theaters in regard to the move- bly achieved.239 In May 1943 the Army
ments of troopships and their return to and the Navy agreed that "a single joint
U.S. ports. Here again the chief difficulty priority list for personnel for overseas
was with Pacific Ocean Areas. movement to all areas of the Pacific The-
In view of these conditions and their ater except North Pacific and Southeast
effect on the work of the Movements Di- Pacific" should be prepared monthly by
vision in planning troop movements and the two departments. The Operations Di-
supervising their execution, Colonel Farr vision of the War Department General
recommended in November 1944 that an Staff represented the Army in the estab-
"advance echelon" of the Movements Di- lishment of joint priorities.240 To provide
vision be set up at San Francisco to col- the basis for negotiations in Washington,
laborate with the joint committees in the commanders of the Central, South,
achieving the best possible use of troop and Southwest Pacific Areas were re-
carriers and in policing the execution of quired to submit joint priority lists for
instructions issued by the Joint Chiefs of their respective commands. These were
Staff and the Joint Military Transporta- consolidated into over-all joint priority
tion Committee. As conceived by Colonel 237
Memo, Farr for Wylie, 15 Nov 44, par. 9 and
Farr, this office would have been entirely summaries 2 and 3, cited n. 231.
238
independent of the Army port of embar- Recommendation 1, Memo, Farr for Wylie, 15
kation and would not have dealt with Nov 44, cited n. 231; Memo, Farr for Wylie, 29 Jan
45, sub: West Coast Operation; Memo, Farr for
operating matters; its principal function Meyer, 6 Feb 45, sub: Proposed West Coast Reorgan-
would have been "to get information and ization; last two in OCT HB Farr Staybacks; Ltr,
to be present when certain decisions are Farr to author, 20 Jul 50, p. 3, OCT HB Mvmts Div
Gen.
made of an over-all nature that require 239
Memo, CofT for ACofS OPD, 13 Mar 43, sub:
complete and thorough coordination with Shipping for South and Southwest Pacific, and reply,
the Navy." The proposal carried the im- 29 Mar 43; both in OCT 000-370.5 POA 1943.
240 Agreement, Gen Marshall and Admiral Ernest
plication that Army interests on the Pa- J. King, 26 May 43, sub: Joint Priority Lists, OCT
cific coast needed a type of supervision 000-370.5 POA 1943.
164 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

lists, which guided the Joint Army-Navy sailing under Army or Navy control and
Surface Personnel Committee at San that the priorities established by theater
Francisco in its utilization of troopships commanders for the shipment of personnel
and in the dispatch of troops.241 were observed. Differences arose over the
The joint use of troopships also called administration of the plan, and some of
for the development of greater uniformity the supporting arrangements, which obvi-
in the shipping procedures used by the ously were desirable, were slow in devel-
Army and the Navy. This development oping. The misunderstandings and delays
was slow, but in the spring of 1945, with were attributable chiefly to the differing
the prospect of an early shifting of em- systems employed by the Army and the
phasis from the Atlantic to the Pacific, a Navy for controlling transportation and
comprehensive joint directive, Ocean movements and the fact that there had
Shipping Procedures (short title, OSPRO), been virtually no co-ordination on this
was published.242 The primary object of level before the war. By the end of the war
the publication was to establish uniform substantial progress toward such co-ordi-
procedures for regulating the preparation nation had been made.
and dispatch of shipping documents and
for reporting information regarding ship A Test of Method and Efficiency
movements, passengers embarked, and
freight loaded. These procedures applied Oversea troop movements provided a
not only to vessels sailing between the real test of method and operating effi-
zone of interior and the theaters, but also ciency. The number of agencies concerned
to those sailing between theaters, since it with both the planning and the execution
was anticipated that the redeployment of phases was a complicating factor. The
troops after the defeat of Germany would many types of units belonging to the
involve substantial shipments from Europe Ground Forces, the Air Forces, and the
and the Mediterranean directly to Pacific Service Forces, and the loosely organized
bases. In matters on which complete uni- groups of individual replacements implied
formity could not be achieved, the differing a wide variety of problems. The necessity
procedures of the Army and the Navy of shipping units and their organizational
were explained, so that each service would equipment on different vessels in most
be informed regarding the other's methods. instances, yet in such a manner that the
The agreement provided for joint central troops could have their equipment soon
record control units in each theater and at after arrival overseas, added to the diffi-
the principal U.S. ports to assist in the culties. Co-ordination was the basic re-
administration of the plan. The establish- quirement, and in December 1941 the
ment of such units, known as Army-Navy 241
Memo, CofT for CG SFPE, 27 Jul 43, sub: Pri-
Shipping Information Agencies (short ority Lists for Central, South, and Southwest Pacific,
title, ANSIA's), had barely begun when OCT 000-370.5 POA 1943.
242 WD TM 38-412/OPNAV 39-H3, United States
hostilities ceased. Army and Navy Ocean Shipping Procedures (short
title, OSPRO); Monthly Vessel Utilization Summary,
The joint use of troopships was essential Jul 45, OCT HB Topic Army-Navy Joint Logistics;
Memo, SFPE for CofT, 8 Oct 45, sub: Hist Record,
as a means of insuring that full advantage and incl entitled ANSIA, OCT HB Topic Port
would be taken of the capacities of vessels Co-ordination.
TROOP MOVEMENTS TO THE OVERSEA COMMANDS 165

machinery for this purpose was very Like many other relationships, this co-
inadequate. Later, when the system had ordination between the ports of embarka-
been improved as the result of experience, tion and the theaters was developed only
large shipments of troops were moved to gradually, and it was more successfully
the seaboard, staged, and embarked with accomplished in the Atlantic than in the
commendable smoothness. Pacific.
The formulation and publication of Wartime experience demonstrated the
detailed procedures was a prerequisite to value of the port staging area both as a
the satisfactory execution of troop move- reservoir in which troops could be held
ments. This was true because of the many pending embarkation and as a place
agencies involved and the multitude of where units that were under strength
services to be performed in making troops when they left their home stations could
ready for movement to and service in the be filled, shortages of individual equip-
theaters. The instructions dealing with the ment could be made up, and minor defi-
preparation of units and individuals for ciencies in physical condition and training
oversea movement covered every step of could be corrected. Although home sta-
the operation and fixed the responsibili- tions gradually improved their perform-
ties of each agency, and they were of in- ance in preparing units and individuals
estimable value. Even then it was neces- for oversea service before shipping them to
sary for the port staging areas, in order to the ports, they frequently fell short of that
have troops completely ready for embar- goal. Their performance never supported
kation, to perform many services that the theory, which was given some atten-
should have been performed by other tion in the early days of the war, that even
agencies. in periods of heavy troop movement stag-
Assignment of a key role to the port ing areas could be dispensed with and
commanders was an important factor in troops could be moved directly from home
the successful regulation of the flow of stations to shipside.
troops to the theaters. The control that Troop movements were necessarily
port commanders exercised over the de- tailored to fit the troopships that were
parture of troops for the seaboard, the available. The situation that confronted
processing and training at the staging the Army during the early months of the
areas, and the embarkation on the trans- war was bleak indeed, but soon the in-
ports enabled them to so co-ordinate all crease in troop lift became rapid, permit-
stages of the operation as to avoid the con- ting troop shipments to be increased
gestion of port facilities, the waste of rail accordingly. The American capacity was
equipment, and the delay of ship sailings. multiplied through the conversion of exist-
The close contactby teletype, radio, and ing passenger ships to troop carriers, the
cablemaintained by the ports of embar- construction of additional passenger ships,
kation with the theaters they served en- and especially through the conversion of
abled them to administer theater priorities many new cargo ships to troopships. The
effectively, to meet emergency require- virtual pooling of the American and Brit-
ments, and at the same time to keep the ish troopship fleets to serve the Allied cause
theater commanders informed regarding greatly helped the U.S. Army, especially
the status of the troops they had requested. in the North Atlantic. The pooling of
166 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

Army and Navy resources in the Pacific troops, processing and shipping it as
facilitated the movement of troops to the promptly as possible, and keeping the the-
Pacific bases. The intensive operation of aters of destination informed regarding
the troopships under Army control and the shipments en route and those that
the plan of loading them to the maximum were delayed. Many difficulties were
practical capacity were additional meas- encountered and the performance was
ures employed to hasten the build-up of uneven.
strength overseas. In brief, every effort was The salient fact regarding oversea move-
made to utilize the troop liftadmittedly ments in World War II is that, after the
a limiting factorto best advantage. transitional period immediately following
The movement of organizational equip- Pearl Harbor, there were no serious inter-
ment had to match the movement of ruptions in the shipment of troops and
troops, but it was affected by different cir- their equipment to the theaters in accord-
cumstances both in the zone of interior and ance with strategic plans. The inadequacy
overseas. Special methods were adopted to of the early procedures, failure to execute
meet the exceptional requirements of the properly the improved procedures that
European theater in 1943 and 1944, but were in effect later, and other difficulties
otherwise the task was essentially one of inherent in so complex an operation re-
insuring that equipment was properly sulted in some temporary annoyance and
marked, getting it delivered to the ports of confusion but did not disturb the military
embarkation at about the same time as the program.
CHAPTER III

Redeployment and
Repatriation
The most complicated and in some sion. After the Japanese capitulation pub-
ways the most difficult phase of the war lic opinion in the United States demanded
from the standpoint of troop transporta- that the troops be brought home and de-
tion came after the defeat of Germany. mobilized with utmost dispatch. Provid-
Up to that time the movement of troops ing transportation to meet these require-
had been mainly from the zone of in- ments proved to be a major task for the
terior to the oversea commands; traffic Army.
between theaters and return traffic to the The Army's transportation task in-
United States had been on a limited scale. cluded, in addition to returning troops,
The end of hostilities in Europe, followed heavy movements of patients from the
closely by the Japanese surrender, in- theaters to the zone of interior, and after
volved more than simply a change in di- the fighting was over the repatriation of
rection for the major troop movement; it the war dead. Both movements involved
involved broad changes in procedures and peculiar problems and required special
the handling of a far greater volume of procedures. The return of civilians, in-
traffic on land and on sea than had been cluding the dependents of military per-
handled at any earlier stage of the war. sonnel, also gave rise to special problems,
During the redeployment and the re- but this traffic was not allowed to inter-
patriation periodsthat is, between V-E fere with homeward military movements.
and V-J Days, and after V-J Daythe While the bulk of the traffic was moved
primary objective was to move the maxi- by ship and by rail, air transportation was
mum number of troops. After the German used during the redeployment and re-
surrender heavy shipments were necessary patriation periods to an extent that was
in order to transfer sufficient forces from not possible earlier. However, the aircraft
Europe to the Pacific to maintain an ever- so employed were under the control of the
increasing pressure on Japan. The prog- Army Air Forces, and the Chief of Trans-
ress of the campaigns under General of portation was not responsible for such
the Army Douglas MacArthur and Fleet movements.
Admiral Chester W. Nimitz had exceeded
Return Traffic Before V-E Day
expectations; the Japanese strength obvi-
ously was deteriorating and no time was Although the number of passengers
to be lost in pushing the war to a conclu- landed at U.S. ports from Army troop-
168 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

GERMAN PRISONERS OF WAR DEBARKING AT A U.S. PORT

ships before V-E Day was small compared considerable movement during the cam-
to the number embarked for oversea paigns in North Africa and continental
areas, the volume of return traffic never- Europe. Among the civilians debarked
theless became substantial as the war were representatives of the nonmilitary
progressed. The experience gained in han- branches of the U.S. and Allied Govern-
dling this return traffic was valuable to ments, the employees of contractors who
the Army in dealing with the larger prob- had performed construction and other
lems that developed during redeployment work for the Army abroad, dependents
and repatriation. of military personnel who were over-
The military element of the wartime seas when the war began, and the brides
homeward traffic was made up chiefly of and children of soldiers who had married
rotational and temporary duty groups, while in foreign countries. Up to the time
casuals returning on furlough or leave, of the German surrender the largest
and patients. Very few units were re- monthly total of passengers debarked at
turned to the United States before V-E U.S. ports from ships under Army control
Day. The Army transported some per- was 146,246 in September 1944. Prisoners
sonnel of the U.S. Navy and of the Allied of war, chiefly from the European theater,
forces, and prisoners of war constituted a accounted for 41 percent of that number.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 169

There was some redeployment of units The instructions stated the basis on which
from the less active to the more active rotational and temporary duty troops
oversea commands before V-E Day. The were to be selected, the records that were
reduction of strength in Alaska, which to be kept, the processing that was to be
began in the late summer of 1943, resulted done in the theaters, and the security in-
in a number of units being returned to the doctrination that was to be provided. Of
United States for reorganization and re- more particular interest to the Transpor-
assignment. A considerable transfer of tation Corps, PRI specified the informa-
units from the South Pacific Area to the tion that was to be radioed to the zone of
Central and Southwest Pacific Areas took interior by theater commanders when
place as Allied forces pushed the perim- troops embarked, the issuance and disposi-
eter of the Japanese forces northward and tion of group or individual movement
westward. During the early months of orders, the procedures to be followed dur-
1945 a number of units with their impedi- ing the homeward voyage, the processing
menta were moved from the Persian Gulf to be given at the ports of debarkation,
Command to the European Theater of and the manner of forwarding from the
Operations and to China, and from India ports to the reception stations. PRI also
to the Pacific Ocean Areas. These move- covered the handling of troops at and
ments, however, required no extensive re- beyond the reception stations.
distribution of shipping such as became The prompt and orderly handling of
necessary after the German capitulation. troops when they arrived at U.S. ports
The increasing number of casual troops depended to a considerable extent on the
returning to the United States during degree to which the theaters fulfilled their
1943 necessitated a clearer definition of responsibilities regarding the movements.
categories and a more explicit statement In addition to organizing rotational and
on procedures. To this end consolidated temporary duty personnel into groups and
instructions were issued by the War De- providing them with escort officers, the
partment in September in a document en- theater commanders were required to
titled, Procedures for the Return of Indi- notify the Chief of Transportation each
viduals (short title: PRI), and these in- month how many passengers were await-
structions were revised and amplified in ing evacuation to the zone of interior.
August 1944.1 Although it dealt with They were also required to send a radio
soldiers traveling as individuals, PRI con- message immediately after each troopship
templated that the majority of individuals departure giving the numbers and cate-
would be placed in rotational (RO) gories of passengers embarked. 2 Army
groups or temporary duty (TD) groups 1
Memos, TAG for CG AAF, CG AGF, CG ASF,
under group commanders. The groups et al., 26 Sep 43, AG 370.5 (22 Sep 43); 16 Aug 44,
were to be organized in the theater so that (10 Aug 44); 23 Dec 44, Supp. 1, (22 Dec 44); 17 Feb
each would include troops destined for a 45, Supp. 2, (17 Feb 45); 6 May 45, Supp. 3,
(25 Apr 45).
single reception station in the zone of in- 2
Detailed information was given the theaters
terior. Such grouping was expected to regarding the capacities of vessels when carrying
have advantages from the standpoint of various types of troops to aid them in planning em-
barkations. OCT Misc Ltr 28, 14 Jul 44; 1st Ind,
administration and discipline and also to Mvmts Div for Contl Div OCT, 27 Nov 44; both in
facilitate transportation arrangements. OCT 569.5 Pers Capacity of Transports.
170 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

ports in the United States were heavily disclose the extent to which the plan was
engaged with outbound troop movements, adopted.5
and advance information regarding in- The ports for which returning troop-
bound movements was needed in order ships were destined needed accurate in-
that the ports might arrange for accom- formation regarding the time of arrival in
modations at the staging areas, the assign- order to make arrangements for the
ment of processing personnel, the reserva- prompt handling of the vessels and their
tion of hospital beds for patients, and the passengers and to prepare for any repairs
provision of railroad equipment for the that might be necessary before the next
onward journey. The theater commands voyage. The work of the ports was so
did not always provide the desired data. closely scheduled that unexpectedly early
As late as March 1945 the Movements Di- or late arrivals were disconcerting. To em-
vision complained that the Southwest phasize this fact the Army port com-
Pacific Area and the Pacific Ocean Areas mander at New York stated that when a
were not complying with the instructions, vessel with troops, patients, and other
since their advices often were entirely lack- passengers was about to arrive there were
ing or were not sufficiently explicit.3 The forty-two agencies to be notified, and hos-
theaters, although they protested strongly pital cars and ambulances sometimes had
when full and prompt information was to be brought from considerable dis-
not received regarding troops en route to tances.6 The cryptographic messages from
them, were themselves sometimes at fault the ships were received at shore stations of
in not providing such information on the Navy and at first were transmitted
homeward-bound troops. "through channels" to the portsa pro-
Maintenance of morale required close cedure that involved a loss of time. When
attention on the part of transport com- the return traffic from Europe began to
manders during the voyage back to the increase, direct communication between
United States. Men returning from over- the Navy's Eastern Sea Frontier and the
seas who were eligible for further military ports was authorized so that the ports
service were inclined to take a gloomy might have a maximum amount of time
view of the future and to allow their spirits
to sag. To offset this tendency, transport 3
Msg, Mvmts Div OCT to Theaters, 30 Aug 44,
commanders were instructed to make the CM-OUT 23724; Msg, Mvmts Div OCT to POA, 2
maximum use of entertainment, exercise, Oct 44, CM-OUT 40317; Memo, Berzelius for Wylie,
16 Mar 45, sub: Problems That Concern Mvmts Div,
and orientation courses to keep the men OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
4 4
occupied. Early in 1945 an experiment Memo, CofT for Mobilization Div ASF, 7 Aug 44,
was undertaken at Hampton Roads to as- sub: Morale of Troops Returning From Overseas,
OCT HB Farr Staybacks; paraphrase of Msg to The-
certain the feasibility of placing enter- aters, 5 Dec 44, OCT HB PE Gen Troops Inbound.
tainers on vessels after their arrival in the Transport commanders also were instructed to en-
harbor to provide diversion for the soldiers force preventive maintenance on rifles and other
individual equipment during the voyage.
during the interval between arrival and 5
Memo, CofT for CG SPE, 27 Mar 45, sub: Recep-
debarkation. Although the experiment tion of Returning Pers, and atchd rpt from HRPE,
was an unqualified success as a morale 10 Mar 45, OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
6
Min of East Coast Port Comdrs Conf Relative to
lifter and the results were brought to the V-E Day Activities, 11 Apr 45, p. 14, OCT HB TC
attention of other ports, the records do not Gen Redepl.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 171

in which to arrange for debarkations.7 The officer candidate schools, separation cen-
requirement that vessels keep the ports in- ters, or to other destinations when they
formed regarding changes in the estimated were on emergency furlough or leave.11
time of arrival was in no sense burden- Observation of troops arriving at New
some, but uniform compliance was not York from the European theater during
obtained.8 Failure of ships to notify ports the winter of 1944-45 disclosed that the
of changes in estimated arrival times be- morale of returning troops was being ad-
came a much more serious problem after versely affected by incorrect information
9
redeployment began. received in the theater regarding their
The port commanders were instructed movements and responsibilities upon
to pass returning troops through their reaching the zone of interior. Promises
establishments as quickly as possible.10 made in the theaters and hopes thus built
The soldiers heard a brief address of wel- up in the minds of returnees could not be
come immediately after debarkation, then realized under the approved procedures.
were forwarded at once to the staging The Information and Education Division
area, where they were to be processed. of the Army Service Forces was responsi-
The staging area commanders endeavored ble for keeping theater commanders cor-
to start the men on the next leg of their rectly informed regarding these matters,
journey within twenty-four hours. Physi- but adequate dissemination of information
cal inspections were made, primarily with in the theaters was difficult because of the
a view to preventing the spread of infec- fluctuating military situation and chang-
tious diseases, except when there had ing personnel. The information-education
been similar inspections by the ship's sur- organization in the European theater,
geon before debarkation. Pay records were initially attached to the headquarters of
checked and payments brought up to the Services of Supply, was transferred to
date. Fresh clothing and equipment suit-
7
able for the onward journey were pro- Remarks of Maj Jerry A. Griffin, G of Returning
Troops Br, Mvmts Div OCT, at Mtg of Port Comdrs,
vided. The records of each rotational and Opng Representatives, and Port Air Officers, 8 Jul 44,
temporary duty group were examined to in Min of Port and Zone Comdrs Conf, Chicago, 6-9
insure that they were intact and in posses- Jul 44, pp. 21, 22, OCT HB PE Gen.
8
Memo, Farr for Gross, 29 Apr 43; Min of Mtg,
sion of the group commander and that the Oversea Troop Br, Mvmts Div OCT, 22 Jul 43; both
entries were up to date. The movement in OCT 370.5 Debarkation.
9
orders of these groups were checked, and See below, p. 189.
10
This paragraph is based on PRI, 16 Aug 44, Secs.
as soon as firm arrangements for rail XI, XII, XIII. See also Min of Port and Zone Comdrs
transportation could be completed the re- Conf, Chicago, 6-9 July 44, Mtg of Port Operating,
ception stations for which the groups were Troop Mvmt, and Equip Representatives, 8 Jul 44,
pp. 6-8, OCT HB PE Gen.
destined were notified of the number of 11
Separation centers, the first of which was estab-
personnel involved and the probable time lished in March 1944, and reception stations eventu-
of arrival. Casuals that did not go to re- ally were operated as components of the personnel
centers that were created at eighteen military posts in
ception stations left the staging areas as the summer of 1944; the number of personnel centers
individuals, or as groups when practica- was later increased to twenty-two. WD Cir 113, 20
ble, after their travel orders had been Mar 44, Sec. IX; WD Cir 292, 11 Jul 44; WD Cir 422,
26 Oct 44; WD press release, 1 Sep 44, sub: 18 Cen-
checked to verify the authority for their ters Announced for Discharging and Processing Army
movement to new permanent stations, Personnel, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
172 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

USS WAKEFIELD LANDING TROOPS from the European Theater of Operations.

the staff of the theater commander in ceeded at once.13 Temporary duty troops,
order that it might operate more effec- which were to go back to their oversea sta-
tively. The port commanders in the zone tions after a thirty-day period of recupera-
of interior were responsible for keeping tion, returned at the end of that period to
transport commanders supplied with cor- the same reception stations; AGF and
rect information so that the orientation ASF troops remained at the reception sta-
given during the return voyage would tions until called to the ports of embarka-
coincide with that given in the theaters.12 tion, while AAF troops proceeded from
Rotational and temporary duty troops the reception stations to AAF redistribu-
14
made a number of trips in quick succes- tion stations and thence to the ports.
sion after leaving the ports of debarkation. Although considerable experience was
As has been noted, all proceeded first to gained in handling returning troops before
reception stations. While at the reception Germany surrendered, the War Depart-
stations rotational troops, which were to 12
remain in the zone of interior, received Memos, CG NYPE for CofT, 27 Mar 45 and 14
Apr 45, sub: Info and Education for Returnees; 1st
orders to proceed to redistribution stations Ind, CofT for CG NYPE, 26 Apr 45; all in OCT HB
but were allowed to take a furlough of Demob Plng Unit Gen Correspondence.
13
twenty-one days en route; at the redis- WD Cir 303, 17 Jul 44; ASF Cir 235, 27 Jul 44;
ASF Cir 253, 7 Aug 44; ASF Cir 402, 9 Dec 44.
tribution stations they received assign- 14
PRI, 16 Aug 44, pars. 76, 77; TC Cir 100-5,
ments to new stations to which they pro- revised 20 Mar 45.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 173

ment foresaw that redeployment would justment Board, a high-level British-


involve many adjustments in facilities and American civilian agency, dealt with the
procedures. Accordingly, it started early employment of the shipping that was
and did a meticulous job in preparing to available to the United Nations.17 The
handle the troops that would be brought War Department developed plans relating
back to the United States after V-E Day. to all phases of Army redeployment, to
which Army Service Forces headquarters
Preparations for Redeployment and the Chief of Transportation made
contributions in their respective spheres.
The task of redeploying its forces after The Chief of Transportation joined with
the defeat of Germany was recognized by the Naval Transportation Service and the
15
the Army as both gigantic and complex. War Shipping Administration in planning
A decision had to be made as to which for the readjustments in the allocation
units would be shipped from Europe di- and operation of American vessels that
rectly to the Pacific and which would be would become necessary after the defeat
returned to the zone of interior for either of Germany. There also were discussions
reassignment or demobilization. An equi- between the Chief of Transportation, the
table basis had to be established for the Office of Defense Transportation, and the
separation of some soldiers from the serv- Association of American Railroads re-
ice and the retention of others. Means had garding the effect of redeployment on
to be found to maintain the morale of domestic transportation. This brief review
those who were being assigned to new can present only those aspects of the broad
oversea stations. All possible shipping had subject that were of special interest to the
to be mobilized in order to effect rede- Chief of Transportation.
ployment with the greatest possible speed. Since planning for redeployment went
Yet the flow of troops to and through the hand in hand with planning for demobili-
United States had to be regulated so as to zation, such planning may be said to have
avoid congesting the ports and the rail- started in the War Department in June
roads. Care had to be exercised also to 1942, when an advisory board of officers
avoid glutting the limited number of ports was appointed to initiate a study of the
in the Pacific areas that were to serve as postwar Military Establishment.18 Active
bases for the invasion of Japan. The intri- planning in the Army Service Forces
cacy of the task was so apparent to the began in the spring of 1943. In July of that
War Department, and to the other agen-
15
cies concerned, that the planning to meet See minutes of ASF press conference held imme-
diately after V-E Day, especially remarks of General
it was begun long before the invasion of Somervell and General Gross, which relate to trans-
continental Europe. portation, OCT HB Gen Redepl,
16
The planning for redeployment pro- Planning and TC participation is reviewed in
Memo, Plng Div for Exec OCT, 23 Jul 45, sub: Rede-
ceeded on several levels and therefore ployment Plng, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
posed a broad problem of co-ordination. See Wardlow, The Transportation Corps: Responsi-
17

The Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Com- bilities, Organization, and Operations, p. 165, for the pur-
bined Chiefs of Staff went into all aspects pose and organization of the.CSAB.
18
This paragraph based on Maj. John C. Sparrow,
of the subject extensively, including trans- History of Personnel Demobilization in the United
16
portation. The Combined Shipping Ad- States Army, DA Pamphlet 20-210, July 1952, Ch. II
174 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

year a Special Planning Division was turned to the United States were to be
established in the War Department Spe- retained in the service and assigned to
cial Staff to deal with both the industrial duty elsewhere than in the Pacific. As
and the military aspects of demobilization. many as qualified for discharge under the
In September 1944 the War Department Army's point system were to be returned
announced that the Army had "adopted a to the zone of interior for immediate sepa-
plan for the readjustment of military per- ration from the service.22 All of these men
sonnel after the defeat of Germany and would require ocean transportation
prior to the defeat of Japan calling for a some for the long voyage from Europe to
partial and orderly demobilization from the Pacific, some from Europe to the
its present peak strength." 19 This plan United States and thence to the Pacific,
was subject to revision, of course, both and some only from Europe to the United
before and after the end of hostilities in States. In addition to troop transports,
Europe, as further attention was given to cargo shipping would be required for the
requirements and procedures and as the organizational equipment and supplies of
circumstances of redeployment were more all troops destined for the Pacific. A basic
clearly seen. responsibility of the Chief of Transporta-
The War Department readjustment tion in connection with redeployment was,
regulations (RR) for personnel, in which therefore, the mobilization of the necessary
the results of the extensive studies were shipping.
crystallized, were published in a series of
six pamphlets, all of which bore directly The plans formulated by the Chief of
or indirectly on the responsibilities of the Transportation for the utilization of ship-
Chief of Transportation.20 These regula- ping during the redeployment period
tions established four categories of troops:
19
Category I troops were those to be re- WD press release, 6 Sep 44, sub: WD Demobili-
zation Plan After the Defeat of Germany; ASF Plan
tained in the same commands; Category for Redeployment, Readjustment, and Demobiliza-
II troops were those to be transferred from tion (Period I), 13 Sep 44, OCT HB Demob Plng Unit
one theater to another; Category III Demob Plng WD Policies.
20
These pamphlets, the latest revisions of which are
troops were surplus units in the theaters in OCT HB Demob Plng Unit Redepl Gen, were as
that were to be reorganized and reclassi- follows:
fied as Category I or Category II; and RR 1-1 Plan for Readjustment of Military Person-
Category IV troops were units to be dis- nel After the Defeat of Germany
RR 1-2 Procedure for Readjustment Movements
banded.21 RR 1 -3 Athletic and Recreation Program
Under the War Department's plan for RR 1 -4 Army Education Program
redeployment, enough troops were to be RR 1-5 Procedures for the Readjustment of Offi-
cers, Warrant Officers, and Flight Officers After the
shipped directly from Europe to the Defeat of Germany
Pacificthe quickest routeto maintain RR 1-6 Standing Operating Procedures for the
maximum pressure against Japan. Con- Demobilization of Category IV Elements.
21
RR 1-1.
sistent with that principle, as many as 22
Detailed procedures for the zone of interior and
possible were to be redeployed by the the theaters were published in AG Memo 320.2 (15
slower route through the United States Feb 45), 27 Feb 45, sub: Policies and Procedures Gov-
erning the Redeployment of the Army; AG Memo
with time out for furlough before being 370.5 (25 Apr 45), 2 May 45, sub: Revision of
reshipped to the Pacific. Some who re- Annex B.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 175

were necessarily tentative until the strat- cated that, assuming no delay on account
egy and the troop basis for the final thrust of equipment, 126 days would be required
against Japan had been determined. for troops to be redeployed directly and
Nevertheless, such plans were made and made operational; 179 days would be re-
remade with each change in the strategic quired in the case of troops redeployed
formula so that the shipping aspect would through the United States. In contrast,
always be assured of proper considera- 177 days would elapse before equipment
tion. A member of the Chief of Transpor- shipped in unit assemblies direct from
tation's Planning Division was transferred Europe to the Pacific would reach the
to the Special Planning Division of the troops, 187 days would elapse if equip-
Special Staff to work on the transporta- ment were shipped by the direct route in
tion phase of redeploy ment and to assure bulk and placed in depots before being
mutual understanding between the two issued to troops, and 262 days would
offices.23 elapse in the case of equipment shipped
In February 1945, when redeployment through the United States. From the cal-
planning by both the Joint Chiefs of Staff culations presented in this study, the Chief
and the Combined Chiefs of Staff was of Transportation concluded that the
taking final shape, General Gross con- movement of equipment should be the
tended that attention was being directed controlling factor in scheduling the rede-
too largely to the problem of moving the ployment of troops; that the units to be
troops and not sufficiently to the problem redeployed directly should be nominated
of making them operationalthat is, hav- as early as possible so that their equip-
ing them equipped for action. At that ment might be started ahead of them; that
time it was contemplated that over a so far as possible equipment should be
period of about twelve months approxi- shipped in bulk rather than as unit as-
mately 405,000 troops would be shipped semblies; and that the Pacific commands
from Europe directly to the Pacific and should be directed to establish equipment
some 875,000 via the United States to the staging areas to facilitate bringing troops
Pacific. General Gross urged that im- and their impedimenta together.
mediate consideration be given by all Although the poverty in troop lift,
planning agencies to a study recently com- which had been one of the chief handicaps
pleted in his office that presented some of the U.S. forces during the early days of
essential data on the subject.24 war, had been largely overcome by in-
The study presented an analysis of the creasing the capacities of existing pas-
time required to move troops and or- senger vessels, constructing new troop-
ganizational equipment from Europe to ships, and converting freighters to troop
the Pacific (Philippines), breaking down carriers, as V-E Day approached this
the total period into the time likely to 23
Maj. (later Lt. Col.) Ronald B. Shuman, who had
elapse between the issuance of movement been with the OCT since its establishment, was trans-
orders and actual departure from Europe, ferred to the Special Planning Division soon after it
was set up in 1943.
the time required for recuperation and 24
Memo, CofT for Dir Plans and Opns ASF, 26
training either in the United States or in Feb 45, sub: Logistical Implications; Study, Redeploy-
the Pacific, and the time spent in travel ment Transportation Implications, 26 Feb 45, and
appended Preliminary Revision of Redeployment; all
over sea and land. The calculations indi- in OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
176 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

greatly expanded capacity was seen as in- only with providing the means of transpor-
adequate to the needs of the redeployment tation. Colonel Farr, as head of the Chief
period. Those needs involved not only the of Transportation's Movements Division,
speedy transfer of troops from Europe and opposed the arrangement. He argued that
the United States to the Pacific, but the staff decisions frequently involve long dis-
repatriation of troops from numerous cussions, and the loss of time would prove
areas that would become militarily unim- a serious disadvantage in the effort to
portant with the surrender of Germany. A return troops at the maximum rate and to
full year before V-E Day, the Planning Di- make maximum use of the transportation
vision in the Office of the Chief of Trans- facilities. He urged that, after the basic
portation pointed out that the completion policies had been established on the staff
of the troopship construction program for level, all operating matters relating to
1945 would not provide the troop spaces transportation be left to the appropriate
required for redeployment and that the operating agencies. Colonel Farr's stand
conversion of further freighters would was in harmony with the Chief of Trans-
therefore be necessary.25 A British-Ameri- portation's protest, mentioned earlier,
can study, submitted to the Combined against the interference of higher echelons
Chiefs of Staff in February 1945, recog- in technical matters. The Navy subse-
nized the danger of a substantial deficit in quently withdrew its proposal from the
American troop lift and outlined ways of JCS docket on the ground that a study of
dealing with it. These ways included over- redeployment policies had been under-
28
loading of troopships, conversion of addi- taken by the Combined Chiefs of Staff.
tional freighters, assistance from Allied,
neutral, and captured enemy shipping, The ports of embarkation, in addition
use of APA's and other naval vessels, full to responsibility for processing Category II
use of combatant aircraft, and careful co- units (those being transferred from one
ordination of the employment of all vessels theater to another) and forwarding them
under control of the Allied nations to to reception stations, were given another
insure maximum utilization of their responsibility for the redeployment and
capacities.26 repatriation periodsthat of inactivating
Redeployment required co-ordination Category IV units (those to be disbanded)
between the Army and the Navy in sched- and forwarding the members to personnel
uling the return of personnel to the United centers for further disposition. For the lat-
States, and it was foreseen that such co- ter purpose the port commanders were
ordination would be even more important 25
when the large-scale repatriation offerees Memo, Stokes for Wylie, 8 May 44, sub: Pro-
posals on C-4 Const Program, OCT HB TC Gen
from the Pacific began. A proposal to this Redepl.
end was placed before the Joint Chiefs of 26
CCS 746/11, 8 Feb 45, title: Over-all Review of
Staff by the Navy in November 1944.27 Cargo and Troop Shipping Position for Remainder of
1945, Tab D to Annex B to Appendix B, p. 30. This
Under this proposal the preparation and study, which represented the joint efforts of the
implementation of plans would have been CMTC and the CSAB, assumed the defeat of Ger-
handled on the staff level, and the Trans- many by 1 July 1945.
27
JCS 1154, 6 Nov 44.
portation Corps and the Naval Transpor- 28
Memo, Farr for Stokes, 8 Nov 44, OCT HB Farr
tation Service would have been charged Staybacks; JMT 83/2, 11 Jan 45.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 177

directed to establish disposition centers in load, although it was tentative, enabled


their staging areas, where the processing them to more competently compute and
involved in disbanding the units and pre- defend their estimates of requirements for
paring the soldiers for their onward jour- personnel and facilities. The principal per-
ney was to be performed.29 Early planning sonnel needs were for clerks, typists, medi-
in the War Department had contemplated cal technicians, hospital ward attendants,
that units to be disbanded would be for- and cooks. The need for such labor was
warded from the ports to redistribution abnormally heavy because returning
centers, where they would be inactivated troops passed through the staging areas
and the men reclassified before being for- very rapidly and usually were not avail-
warded to reception stations or separation able for kitchen, mess, or other work
centers. The Chief of Transportation be- details.31
lieved that the interposition of such redis- The planning that preceded the defeat
tribution centers involved an unnecessary of Germany did not neglect the Pacific
waste of time and transportation, and it coast, which was to carry the chief logisti-
was for that reason that the inactivation cal load for both the Army and the Navy
of units was eventually assigned to the port in the final drive against Japan. Care was
commanders. For the same reason the taken to prevent shipping facilities from
Chief of Transportation favored placing being diverted to nonshipping uses, and to
reception stations and separation centers build up staging area capacity to the level
at the same installations, and the logic of that would be required. Measures were
this was recognized in the creation of per- taken also to clear depots and holding and
sonnel centers embracing both reception reconsignment points of outmoded or ex-
30
and separation activities. cessive supplies in order that these instal-
The adjustments that the east coast ports lations might serve current needs more
of embarkation would have to make when adequately. But the principal limiting
redeployment began were discussed at a factor was the capacity of the transconti-
conference held in New York on 11 April nental railways. The Chief of Transporta-
1945. The chief problem was to retain tion had devoted much effort to helping
sufficient staging capacity in active status the western rail lines increase their rolling
and sufficient station personnel to handle 29
OCT Misc Ltr 133, 26 Oct 44, sub: Estab of Disp
the returning troops. The ports, along with Centers; RR 1-6, 16 Feb 45; TC Pamphlet 39, 1 May
other Army installations, had been under 45, Disp Center Org and Procedures; TC Pamphlet
40, 15 May 45, Processing and Movement of Category
heavy pressure for some time to reduce II Units Returned from Overseas.
personnel, and now they were confronted 30
Memo, Farr for Demob Plng Unit OCT, 24 Apr
with a substantial increase in work load. 44. OCT HB Mvmts Div Farr Staybacks; Min of
Port and Zone Comdrs Conf, Chicago, 6-9 July 44,
Up to the time of this conference the port Mtg of Port Comdrs, Opng Representatives, and Port
commanders had been handicapped in Air Officers, 8 Jul 44, p. 27, OCT HB PE Gen.
31
their planning by lack of information re- Min of East Coast Port Comdrs Conf Relative to
V-E Day Activities, 11 Apr 45; Min of Conf of Repre-
garding the rate at which they would have sentatives of OCT and East Coast PEs on Handling
to handle returning troops. In an off-the- Returnees, at NYPE, 11 May 45; both in OCT HB
record discussion, they were given such TC Gen Redepl; Memo, CofT for PMG, 6 Apr 45,
sub: German POWs; Memo, NYPE for CofT, 14 Apr
data as the Chief of Transportation pos- 45. sub: Post-V-E Day Requirements; last two in
sessed, and the estimate of the projected OCT HB Demob Plng Unit Gen Correspondence.
178 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

stock and improve their right of ways, yet The Ground Forces and the Air Forces
he recognized that Gulf and Atlantic ports considered it necessary to maintain con-
would have to be used to some extent in tact with Category IV troops while they
32
supporting the forces in the Pacific. were at the disposition centers, and the
The processing of returning troops at readjustment regulations provided for
the ports of debarkation was geared for such liaison activities on the part of the
speed. Early in the planning General Som- major commands.36 While recognizing
ervell pointed out that, whether they were that there were functions that the liaison
to be separated from the service or to be officers could perform during this period,
sent on furloughs before being reassigned, the Chief of Transportation and the port
soldiers would be impatient to reach their commanders viewed the arrangement with
homes and any delay would increase the misgivings. This was particularly true
problems of morale and discipline. The because of the breadth of the instruction
Chief of Transportation therefore directed the AGF had issued to its liaison detach-
that there be no civic demonstrations at ments. It was feared that the liaison activi-
the ports; the brief receptions would be ties would slow up the processing of troops
33
strictly military in character. Under nor- and delay the onward movement. Great
mal circumstances the processing of Cate- care had been taken to arrange for uni-
gory II units at the staging areas was to be form and accurate information to be given
accomplished within twenty-four hours, the soldiers on the transports and at the
and the processing of Category IV units ports of debarkation, and it was antici-
within forty-eight hours.34 During the pated that the liaison detachments might
processing period constant attention was introduce conflicting information. Such
to be given to morale. Soldiers were to be situations actually occurred during the
relieved of work details when possible. A initial stages of redeployment, but they
special meal was to be served to them soon were largely eliminated as the liaison
after their arrival at the staging areas. groups gained a better knowledge of
Since a large percentage of the men would the responsibilities and methods of the
be intent on making telephone contact disposition centers.37
with their homes as quickly as possible,
special telephone facilities were to be in- According to War Department plan-
stalled in the sections of the staging areas ning, troops, after being processed at the
where the men would be housed, and port staging areas, were to be forwarded to
portable telephones were to be provided 32
Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 179, 180, 323-28.
in the hospitals for the use of bed patients. 33
Min of Conf of CGs of SvCs, Dallas, Texas, 19
Arrangements were made for each man to Feb 44, p. 41, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl; Min of Conf
at NYPE, 11 May 45, p. 63, cited n. 31.
have a thorough cleanup and to exchange 34
Processing is defined in RR 1-1, RR 1-6, and TC
any unpresentable articles of clothing for Pamphlets 39 and 40, cited notes 20 and 29.
35
presentable ones.35 The plan provided that Min of Conf at NYPE, 11 May 45, pp. 37-46,
cited n. 31.
while at the staging areas the troops would 36
RR 1-1, Chart I.
be briefed on the necessity of safeguarding 37
OCT Misc Ltr 113, 5 Apr 45, sub: Liaison De-
military information and would be inter- tachments at PEs, and atchd Memo, AGF for ASF,
OCT HB TC Gen Redepl; Min of Conf at NYPE, 11
rogated for information bearing on war May 45, pp. 7-16, cited n. 31; Ltr, Farr to author, 2
crimes. Jan 52, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 179

personnel centers located near their homes U.S. ports of large transshipment opera-
for further processing before being sepa- tions. Equipment shipped to the Pacific
rated from the service, or released on fur- from Europe and the United States was
lough before reassignment. The plan not to be marked for specific units, but
provided that soldiers to be reassigned rather was to be shipped in bulk and
would return to the personnel centers at assigned to the units after their arrival at
the end of their furloughs and be for- the Pacific bases.
warded thence to assembly areas, where To insure that the domestic transporta-
they would be prepared for further serv- tion provisions of the redeployment plan
38
ice. The Chief of Transportation empha- were understood by all concerned, the
sized the desirability of handling this Chief of Transportation arranged for a
traffic in such a way as to minimize the conference to be held in Chicago on 1 and
strain on the passenger services of the rail- 2 May. The first session was attended by
roads. He wanted to keep the number of transportation officers from the service
trips that the men would make as low as commands, the transportation zones, the
possible and to have them travel in organ- ports of embarkation, and the personnel
ized groups whenever practicable. Group centers, and the second session also in-
travel in special cars or special trains, as cluded representatives of the carriers. In
distinguished from individual travel in addition to clearing up any misconceptions
regular trains, permitted more economical regarding the plan of movement, these
use of railway equipment, reduced the meetings were intended to give warning of
amount of ticketing and other paper work, the volume of traffic to be handled and the
and enabled the Army to exercise better necessity for utmost economy in the use of
41
control over the appearance and conduct railway equipment.
of the troops. The Chief of Transportation It was anticipated that, despite the
had to combat numerous proposals that carefully devised arrangements for han-
would have violated these canons, and it dling redeployment traffic, the railroads
was not until early in 1945 that he was would encounter difficulties. Aside from
rewarded by the adoption of a procedure the increase in the over-all load, the con-
that conformed to his desires.39 centration of debarkations from Europe at
An effort was also made to avoid adding 38
Remarks by Col Finlay in Min of SvC Conf,
unnecessarily to the burden on the freight Camp Grant, III., 28-30 Jun 45, pp. 199-206, OCT
services of the American railroads. Most HB ASF; charts showing movements of Category II
and Category IV troops, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
units returning to the United States in 39
For more detailed statement of the issues, see
Categories II and IV were to be accom- OCT HB Monograph 20, pp. 136-41; Memo, CofT
panied by only minimum essential equip- for ACofS OPD, 20 Nov 44, OCT 370.5 Redpl of
Units and Equip; Handwritten Memo, Wylie for
ment.40 Heavy equipment that was still Gross, 11 Jan 45, and atchd statement by Col Morris,
serviceable was to be shipped directly from Traf Contl Div OCT, sub: Redeployment, OCT HB
Europe to the Pacific, and additional re- TC Gen Redpl.
40
RR 1-1, 15 Feb 45, par. 18; RR 1-2, 11 Apr 45,
quirements were to be supplied from the par. 16; Min of SvC Conf, Camp Grant, III., 28-30
United States. This would not only relieve Jun 45, p. 206.
41
the domestic carriers of the transportation OCT Misc Ltr 130, 16 Apr 45; Notes on TC
Conf, Chicago, 1-2 May 45, by Capt William H.
of a large part of the impedimenta of Schmidt, Hist Off of Traf Contl Div; both in OCT
redeployed units, but would also relieve HB TC Gen Redepl.
180 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

a few east coast ports and the uneven rate for troops. The Army Air Forces estimated
of troop arrivals were expected to create that the normal airlift would not exceed
periods of unusual strain. The outlook was 12,000 per month, including 5,000 patients
discussed within the Army and by the who were to have top priority. Shortly
other governmental agencies concerned before V-E Day, however, the Chief of
with domestic transportation.42 Staff directed the AAF to increase its
In accordance with a suggestion of the transatlantic capacity so that 50,000 could
Director of War Mobilization and Recon- be transported monthly, this figure to be
version, the domestic transportation impli- attained not later than 1 July 1945. Meas-
cations of redeployment were considered ures to add the necessary aircraft to the
early in the spring of 1945 by a panel rep- services of the Air Transport Command
resenting the Office of Defense Transpor- were undertaken at once.44 It was foreseen
tation, the War Department, the Navy also that a large number of AAF personnel
Department, the War Shipping Adminis- would be returned from the ETO and the
tration, the War Production Board, and MTO in tactical aircraft. Although ini-
43
the War Food Administration. The ODT tially it was expected that this AAF per-
representative was the steering member of sonnel would be moved directly from the
this panel. The statements submitted to aerial ports of debarkation to the places
the panel by the Director of ODT, Mr. where they were being sent for recupera-
Johnson, emphasized that, although the tion, before redeployment began it was
over-all transportation load would not be arranged that all troops landed at eastern
materially different from that handled in airports would be forwarded first to the
1944, the cumulative strain of three years nearest water port staging area to receive
of war, the insufficiency of the new equip- the customary processing and to be organ-
ment provided during these years, and the ized into groups for the onward journey.45
inadequacy of manpower would result in This arrangement avoided the necessity of
a shortage of transportation during the setting up machinery for processing troops
period from V-E Day to V-J Day. Unless 42
Ltr, ICC to CofT, 30 Jun 44, OCT 511 Misc TC;
the programs relating to new equipment Min of ASF Staff Conf, 18 Jan 45, p. 10, OCT HB
and manpower were revised, Mr. Johnson ASF; ODT press release, 31 Jan 45, OCT HB Topic
ODT.
foresaw the necessity of curtailing non- 43
OWMR Study V-E-9, sub: Transportation V-E
military traffic and possibly also establish- Day to V-J Day, undated, but apparently issued in
ing priorities on the movement of goods March or April 1945, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
44
Memo, ACofS OPD for CG AAF, 17 Apr 45,
for war production. Although both pas- sub: Return of Casual Mil Pers from Europe, OPD
senger and freight traffic were considered, 370.9, Sec. IX-A, Case 145; Memo, CG AAF for
the chief concern appears to have centered CofS, 22 Apr 45; Draft Memo, CofS USA for Fleet
Admiral Ernest J. King, USN, 26 Apr 45, file copy
about freight; yet the movement of troops indorsed "not useddiscussed by Gen Giles with
became the more critical problem after Adm Fitch"; Summary by G-4, 25 Apr 45; last three
redeployment began. in G-4 580; Memo, ACofS OPD for Marshall, 3 May
45, OPD 370.9, Sec. IX-A, Case 145.
45
Min of Conf at NYPE, 11 May 45, cited n. 31;
In formulating plans for redeployment Memo, ACofS OPD for CGs of AAF, ASF, etc., 12
it was contemplated that the water lift May 45, sub: Return of Certain Aircraft and Crews,
AG 370.5 (10 May 45); Memo, TAG for CGs AAF,
from the European and Mediterranean ASF, etc., 21 May 45, sub: Disp of Individuals Re-
theaters would be supplemented by airlift turned under Green Project, AG 200.4 (18 May 45).
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 181

at the airports and furthered the Chief of to take on V-E Day were simulated. After
Transportation's aim to move troops in studying the results of the practice opera-
groups of a carload or more to the greatest tion as it affected troop movements, the
extent possible. Chief of Transportation reported that he
considered the prescribed procedures
The War Department plan for redeploy- basically sound. There were, however,
ment included procedures to govern the some details that required further atten-
disposition of troops and troop impedi- tion. General Gross recommended partic-
menta that on V-E Day were en route to ularly that each troop movement order
theaters then becoming inactive and troops issued thereafter be specifically marked to
that were under movement orders to pro- indicate whether the shipment would be
ceed to those theaters. The intention, nat- stopped on V-E Day or continued. This
urally, was to stop all outbound shipments arrangement already had been made in
except those which would be required in connection with cargo and had been found
the theaters despite their inactive status. helpful. Accordingly the symbol "#" was
Provision was also made for the disposition placed on the order opposite the name of
of rotational and temporary duty troops each individual who was to continue his
whose further employment might be oversea trip despite the intervention of
affected by the surrender of Germany. 46 V-E Day, and such troops were referred
The Operations Division of the General to as having been "crosshatched." One of
Staff was charged with over-all responsi- the principal advantages anticipated from
bility for co-ordinating the actual rede- this system of marking was that it would
ployment of troops. The commanders of enable the Transportation Corps, when
the AAF, the AGF, and the ASF each des- practicable, to assign only shipments of the
ignated a liaison officer to work with the same classification to a troopship and thus
Troop Control Section of OPD, and the simplify the disposition of shipments at sea
Chief of Transportation did likewise. The on V-E Day.48
specific responsibility of the OCT liaison
officer was to have on hand at all times in- In the Office of the Chief of Transporta-
formation regarding the troops and the tion the planning for redeployment, as
impedimenta that were en route and the well as for demobilization, was the direct
location of all ships, as well as a plan for responsibility of each director and division
rescheduling the ships when redeployment 46
Memo, TAG for CGs AAF, AGF, and ASF, 3
began. Direct responsibility for controlling Apr 45, sub: Disp of Individuals in or En Route to
the disposition of troops and supplies was U.S. for Rotation or TD, AG 210.31 (31 Mar 45).
47
charged to the Movement Coordinating ASF Cir 112, 24 Apr 44, Sec. VI; ASF MCC Sp
Memo 2, 7 Apr 45, sub: SOP for Sp Operation, OCT
Center, which had been set up in the Mo- HB Demob Plng Unit Redepl Policies and Proce-
47
bilization Division of ASF headquarters. dures; Memo, ACofS OPD for CGs ASF, AGF, and
In order to test the adequacy of the AAF, 9 Apr 45, sub: Procedure for Implementation
of Redepl, OPD 370.9 (9 Apr 45), and Tabs A-G.
procedures for redeployment and the read- 48
Memos for Record by Col Farr and Maj Ouder-
iness of the several agencies to carry those kirk, both dated 25 Mar 45, OCT HB Ouderkirk Stay-
procedures into effect, the War Depart- backs; Memo, Gross for Lutes, 29 Mar 45, OCT 387
Trail Run of V-E Day Actions; Memo by Ouderkirk,
ment ordered a dry run on 25 March. The 14 May 45, par. 9, included in Mvmts Div Hist, Apr
actions that each agency would be required 45, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
182 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

chief, so far as his particular activities werethe realization that V-E Day might come
concerned. Such planning involved many suddenly and would call for a drastic
individuals and units within the OCT, readjustment in troop and cargo move-
and all proposals had to be co-ordinated ments. They also reflected the realization
with the other War Department agencies that the smoothness and speed with which
involved. In accordance with instructions redeployment was effected would have a
from the Commanding General, Army considerable bearing on the morale of the
Service Forces, to all technical services, the troops and the rapidity with which the war
Chief of Transportation established a De- against Japan could be brought to a
mobilization Planning Unit in his office conclusion.
in November 1943. Headed by Col.
Halsey Dunwoody (Ret.) and supervised Redeployment Between V-E Day
by the OCT executive, Col. Luke W. and V-J Day
Finlay, this unit served as a co-ordinating When Germany surrendered on 8 May
center for all Transportation Corps plans 1945 there were approximately 8,300,000
affecting redeployment, readjustment, and men and women in the U.S. Army in all
demobilization.49 parts of the world. About 5,400,000 of
Responsibility for the execution of them were overseas, and some 3,500,000
approved plans on behalf of the Chief of of those were in the European and Medi-
Transportation also rested with the respec- terranean theaters. It was planned that by
tive directors and division chiefs, or with discharging about 2,000,000, moving a
the commanders of Transportation Corps considerable number of troops from
field installations acting under their super- Europe to the Pacific, and continuing the
vision. All actions to be taken by the draft about 6,968,000 men and women
Transportation Corps relating to redeploy- would be in service at the end of twelve
ment, readjustment, and demobilization months, a force considered necessary for
were described in detail in a pamphlet that the early defeat of Japan. The War De-
was issued first in May 1944 and revised partment explained to the nation that,
from time to time.50 Immediately after although all physically fit soldiers who had
V-E Day, as a further aid to those con- not yet served overseas would be assigned
cerned with the redeployment of troops, to foreign service, it was still necessary for
the Chief of Transportation issued a sched- many of the troops that had fought in
ule briefly outlining the actions to be taken Europe to be redeployed to the Pacific.
and indicating the other War Department During the winter of 1944-45 the demands
agencies with which co-ordination was 49
necessary, the element of the OCT having Memo, CofT for Dir of Industrial Demob ASF,
24 Nov 43, OCT 387 Demob PlngMatriel; OCT
primary responsibility for each action, Off Order 5-22, 25 Nov 43, sub: Demob Plng Unit;
and the other elements of the OCT Memo, CofT for Dirs and Div Cs OCT, 10 Apr 45,
51 sub: Responsibility for Preparing and Perfecting
concerned.
Redepl, Readj, and Demob Plans, OCT 387 Demob
Plng.
The careful preparations that were 50
The first edition of TC Pamphlet 12 dealt only
made for redeployment, with respect to with matriel demobilization; actions relating to per-
sonnel redeployment were added later.
both the formulation of procedures and 51
OCT Misc Ltr 153, 9 May 45, sub: WD Agencies
the assignment of responsibilities, reflected and OCT Divs Concerned with Redepl and Readj.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 183
of the European theater had been so heavy and from numerous other oversea areas in
that as V-E Day approached not a single order to carry out readjustments made
combat division and few smaller tactical necessary by the change in the strategic
units remained in the United States. In situation, and would have to transport
order to meet the timetable of the war troop replacements and supporting sup-
against Japan, about one third of the plies to all forces stationed outside the
troops being redeployed to the Pacific United States.53
would have to be shipped directly from The effect of V-E Day on troopship
Europe. The remaining two thirds could movements in the Atlantic was moderate
be redeployed through the United States because the gradualness of the German
and given furloughs en route.52 collapse had permitted numerous adjust-
A few days after the German capitula- ments to be made in advance. No large
tion, Generals Somervell and Gross sum- units had been shipped to Europe or the
marized the transportation aspects of Mediterranean for some weeks, and the
redeployment as they then appeared. flow of replacement troops and combat
Assuming that an occupation force of equipment had been reduced to the mini-
about 400,000 would be left in Germany, mum.54 A week before the German surren-
some 3,100,000 soldiers would have to be der steps were taken to check the return to
transported from Europe during the ensu- the theaters of temporary duty and fur-
ing ten to twelve months. It was estimated lough personnel that were in the United
that approximately 845,000 would be States, except those designated for return
55
moved during the first three months, regardless of military developments. As
1,185,000 during the next three months, a result, so few troops were outbound when
and 807,000 during the third quarter of V-E Day arrived that it was not necessary
redeployment. The Air Transport Com- to turn back any troopships then en route
mand was expected to fly about 50,000 to Europe; they were permitted to con-
per month from Europe to the United tinue to their destinations in order to be
56
States and the remainder would be trans- used immediately for redeployment.
ported by water. The long voyages to the 52
Public statement by the War Department sum-
Pacific, measuring up to 14,000 miles for marizing testimony given in executive session of the
troops proceeding directly from Europe to House Committee on Military Affairs, issued 5 May
1945, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
Manila, would necessitate an intensive 53
ASF press conf, 10 May 45, OCT HB TC Gen
use of all available shipping. The shipping Redepl. The transportation of about 90,000 American
problem was accentuated by the necessity RAMP's (Recovered Allied Military Personnel) from
Europe to U.S. had begun in April, and the bulk of
of using many vessels for the "roll-up" of the movement was embarked in May and June.
troops and supplies already in the Pacific 54
Memo, Ouderkirk for Farr, 27 Apr 45, sub:
areas and the inadequate port facilities in Troops for May Shipment, OCT HB Mvmts Div
Ouderkirk Staybacks.
the Philippines and in other islands that 55
Msg, Marshall to Eisenhower, 1 May 45, CM-
were to serve as bases for the attack on OUT 75415; Msg, Marshall to McNarney, 2 May 45,
Japan. They explained that, while the CM-OUT 76169.
56
Memo, C of Mvmts Div for Hist Unit OCT, 20
major task of redeployment from Europe Jun 45, par. 15, OCT HB Mvmt Div Rpts. In view
to the Pacific was being performed, the of the prospective reduction of supply requirements
Transportation Corps would also have to in the ETO and the MTO, more than sixty cargo
ships were either turned back to U.S. ports while at
provide shipping to transport troops to sea or were returned from Europe without unloading.
184 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

USS WEST POINT EMBARKING TROOPS AT NAPLES a few days after the
German surrender.

About a dozen ships that had sailed or on 8 June and arrived at Manila on
were about to sail to the United States 15 July. The shipment included 4,275
with prisoners of war were ordered to dis- service troops, urgently needed at Manila,
charge their passengers at the ports of whose relatively limited organizational
origin so that they might embark troops equipment made their early departure
without delay.57 possible.59
Redeployment got under way quickly. Co-ordination of the movement of
The first troopships sailing from Europe to troops and equipment was the greatest
the United States carried small units and problem in direct redeployment. Although
patients. The first large unit to arrive in 57
the United States was the 86th Infantry Memo, CofT for Dir Plans and Opns ASF, 12
Apr 45, sub: V-E Day Action; Memo, Col Griffin for
Division, which reached New York on C of Mvmts Div, 9 May 45, sub: POW; Msg, Mvmts
17 June. By 7 July, within two months Div OCT to theaters, 11 May 45, WARX 81054, and
after V-E Day, two more complete infan- appended note for record; all in OCT HB Mvmts Div
Griffin Staybacks.
try divisions and parts of seven others were 58
WD press release for 8 July 1945 lists divisions
back in the United States being prepared scheduled for return to the United States by 31 De-
58 cember, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
for reshipment to the Pacific. The first 59
Memo by Maj Ouderkirk, 5 Oct 45, included in
American troops to sail from Europe Mvmts Div Hist for Jun 45, OCT HB Mvmts Div
directly to the Pacific left Leghorn, Italy, Gen.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 185

86TH DIVISION TROOPS ARRIVING AT NEW YORK are met by the "Welcome
Home" boat.

a number of fast freighters were assigned then under construction.61 Work was
to lift the equipment, much of it had to started soon after V-E Day on a program
move in slow freighters, and in some in- to install temporary accommodations on
stances the departure of troops had to be about 200 Liberty cargo ships to give them
delayed so that they would not arrive in a capacity of 550 each, and to convert 100
the Pacific too long before impedimenta Victory cargo ships to carry 1,500 troops
was available. The slowness in shipping each.62 Late in June the Chief of Staff
equipment was due chiefly to the inade- directed the Transportation Corps to "ex-
quate facilities at European ports for proc- ploit every possible method of loading
essing vehicles for the ocean voyage and to troopships to the maximum, including
delays on the part of the Pacific commands 60
Memo, CofT for OPD, 16 May 45, sub: Pacific
in naming destination ports.60 Destinations, OCT HB Farr Staybacks; Draft of Rad
to CINCAFPAC Manila, 3 Jul 45, and atchd memo
Various measures were taken to enlarge for record, OCT HB Ouderkirk Staybacks; Memo,
C of Mvmts Div for Hist Unit OCT, 20 Jun 45, par.
troop-carrying capacity in order that the 15, OCT HB Mvmts Div Rpts.
rate of redeployment might be increased. 61
Ltr, Somervell to Rear Adm Emory S. Land
In anticipation of its need, the Army in (Ret), 28 Mar 45, OCT 561.4 Troop Transports.
62
These Liberties had been equipped to carry up
March had urged the Maritime Commis- to 500 troops in 1943-44; see above, Ch. II, pp. 90-91,
sion to expedite the delivery of troopships 145-48.
186 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

THE QUEEN MARY ARRIVING AT NEW YORK with about 15,000 soldiers aboard.

converted cargo ships, not in excess of the and the employment of such passenger
lowest acceptable standards."63 It was ships as might be surrendered by Ger-
anticipated that this would entail double many. The British made their three largest
bunking, subnormal ventilation and sani- linersthe Queen Mary, the Queen Elizabeth,
tation, and the extensive use of dried and and the Aquitaniaavailable for the trans-
prepared foods. Arrangements were made portation of American troops from Europe
with the Navy that whenever practicable to the United States until the end of 1945.
naval personnel returning from Europe At the Potsdam Conference in July 1945,
would be accommodated on combatant seven vessels that had been under German
ships in order that the troopship space control were assigned to the United
allotted to the Navy might be used for re- States.65
deploying soldiers.64 The discontinuance With the vessels thus obtained and with
of troopship convoys in the Atlantic on the aid of overloading wherever feasible,
4 June enabled the Army to quicken the
63
turnaround of vessels. Memo, ACofS OPD for CG ASF, 28 Jun 45,
The plans for achieving a speedy OPD 370.5 PTO (25 Jun 45).
64
Msg, CNO to COMNAVEU, 16 May 45,
redeployment of troops included the con- CM-IN 15801 (17 May 45).
65
tinued use of vessels under British control Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 225-26.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 187
the Chief of Transportation calculated that Forces sent a group to Europe, including
by 1 October the troop shipping available representatives of all technical services
to the U.S. armed forces would accommo- and some of the staff divisions, to assist the
date more than 1,000,000 men.66 He esti- ETO and the MTO with their redeploy-
mated that about 660,000 troops could be ment problems.71 The Chief of Transpor-
embarked in all parts of the world in tation kept the theater commanders in-
August with the troop lift then available.67 formed regarding troopship schedules,
Throughout redeployment the distribu- including anticipated arrival and depar-
tion of shipping was governed by plans for ture dates at American and European
the build-up of strength in the Pacific. Al- ports. Each theater commander was re-
though in the beginning vessels aggregat- quired to send a pre-embarkation message
ing about 200,000 troop spaces were to the War Department about five days in
transferred from the Pacific to the Atlantic, advance of every homeward sailing giving
it was intended that they should lift only a summary of the troops to be embarked,
one shipment from Europe and then return and to dispatch complete troop rosters by
to the Pacific.68 Early in July OPD re- air mail on the same day. Within twenty-
quested that the troop lift in the Pacific be four hours after a sailing the theater com-
increased by 111,000 spaces. This request mander notified the War Department by
was met by the reassignment of seventy- radio concerning any corrections in the
four Victory ships that had been desig- data previously forwarded.72
nated for service in the Atlantic after con- An observer from the New York Port of
version to troop carriers. By that time the Embarkation who was detailed to the
flow of troops from Europe to the United ETO during the greater part of the rede-
States by water and air had so far ex- ployment period reported that one of the
ceeded expectations that the transfer of chief difficulties in the theater was to
this large number of vessels could be made reconcile the troop movement directives
without prejudicing the ability of the received from OPD with the troopship
Transportation Corps to complete the re- schedules and capacities provided by the
moval of troops from Europe by 30 June Chief of Transportation, since the former
1946.69 Arrangements with the Navy consistently exceeded the latter notwith-
assured that all available space in com- standing the general practice of overload-
batant vessels sailing from the United
66
States to the Pacific would be used for Estimate by Water Div OCT, 10 Jul 45, OCT
troops.
70 HB TC Gen Redepl.
67
Memo, CofT for Dir Plans and Opns ASF, 7
Aug 45, sub: Available Troop Lift, OCT HB TC Gen
Because of the intensity with which the Redepl.
68
ships were used, close co-ordination was Memo by Maj Russell H. Nies, 14 Jun 45, in
Mvmts Div Histories, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
necessary between the War Department 69
Memo, ACofS OPD for CG ASF, 7 Jul 45, sub:
and the theater commanders, and this was Increased Lift for Pacific, OPD 370.5 (7 Jul 45);
Memo, Wylie for Stokes, 9 Jul 45, OCT HB TC Gen
particularly true of the European theater. Redepl; Ltr, JCS to Adm Land, WSA, 28 Jul 45,
Soon after V-E Day Maj. Gen. Frank S. OPD 561, Sec. III.
Ross, Chief of Transportation, ETOUSA, 70
Min of OCT Opns Mtg, 25 Jun 45, OCT HB Dir
and a group of officers came to Washing- of Opns.
71
Min of ASF Staff Mtg, 29 May 45, p. 16.
ton to work out the details of redeploy- 72
Memo, Farr for Finlay, 24 Jul 45, OCT HB
ment procedures. The Army Service Griffin Staybacks.
188 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

ing the vessels to the maximum. 73 This and after the voyage is not difficult to
difficulty suggests that the co-ordination understand. In Europe the soldier was
between OPD and the OCT regarding filled with the desire to get home and
homeward movements was less complete nothing else seemed important. Once on
than it had been during the period of the way, he was face to face with the ab-
heavy outbound shipments. normal conditions that inevitably attend
troop movements executed under pres-
The Army in its planning for redeploy- sure, and he found them not to his liking.
ment attached considerable importance It is probable that some men registered
to maintaining morale. The morale prob- complaints when approached by press re-
lem had to be met first in the theaters porters after debarkation because they
while the troops were in a state of com- believed that that was the only way to
parative idleness awaiting transportation. make the news columns. It is clear, on the
The prime necessity was to keep the men other hand, that because of overcrowding
occupied, and this was done as far as pos- the ocean voyage could scarcely have been
sible by programs of athletics, recreation, a pleasant experience. Many of the com-
and education.74 Care was taken also to plaints were from men who had returned
provide correct information on redeploy- on the temporarily converted Liberty
ment objectives and procedures so that the ships. It would have been fortunate if the
troops would not build up expectations use of these ships could have been avoided,
that could not be realized. Indoctrination but they were needed to carry out the
was not always accomplished before sail- timetable of redeployment, and their use
ing, and the transport commanders were before and after V-J Day enabled 375,000
accordingly directed to give the matter soldiers to reach home earlier than would
special attention during the voyage.75 One have been the case otherwise.77
result of misinformation, which had to be
corrected, was that the troops believed Because of the increased number of
they were on leave from the time they left ships to be debarked at U.S. Atlantic
the theater. Actually they were in duty 73
Memo, Lt Col Milton Wallach for CofT, 5 Sep
status until their furloughs started at the 45, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
74
reception stations. Such programs were outlined in RR 1-3 and
When the fighting ceased the general RR 1-4. 75
Memo, CofT for CG ETO, 23 Apr 45, sub: Ori-
attitude of troops in Europe was that they entation Before Embarkation at Oversea Ports, OCT
would willingly endure any discomfort on HB Griffin Staybacks; Memo, TAG for All Theaters,
27 May 45, AG 370.5 (24 May 45); Memo, CofT for
the voyage homeward if that would CGs of PEs 29 May 45, sub: Info for Returned
hasten their arrival, yet many voiced com- Troops, OCT HB Mvmts Div Troop Mvmts Inbound.
76
plaints after reaching the United States. Memo, TIG for CG ASF, 28 Jul 45, sub: Condi-
In a broad survey of soldier opinion on tions Surrounding and Treatment Afforded American
Troops Being Returned to U.S.; 2d Ind, CofT for CG
the manner in which redeployment was ASF, 21 Aug 45, commenting on the various com-
being accomplished, The Inspector Gen- plaints; both in OCT 370.5 Returning Overseas Vet-
eral heard many criticisms of conditions erans. Cf. Dwight D. Eisenhower, Crusade in Europe
(Garden City, New York: Doubleday & Company,
on the ships and the handling of the Inc., 1949), pp. 420-22, on attitude of RAMP's.
troops.76 The difference in attitude before 77
Col Marcus B. Stokes, Jr., Shipping in War, p.
22, OCT HB Topic Logistics Gen.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 189

ports during redeployment, careful plan- quire. Since redeployment involved the
ning was necessary for the most efficient return of many seasoned troops from the
use of port facilities and rail transporta- Pacific for demobilization, disposition
tion. Accurate information regarding the centers were set up also at San Francisco,
time of arrival for each vessel was needed, Seattle, and Prince Rupert. The basic
and this information was supplied by purpose in establishing disposition centers
radio reports from the ships to the Navy's and redeployment areas in the staging
Eastern Sea Frontier (ESF). These reports areas at the ports was to segregate in-
were relayed to the Chief of Transporta- bound troops completely from those en
tion and the ports of embarkation. .After route to the theaters in order that the dif-
V-E Day in order to assure the prompt ferent types of processing might be accom-
distribution of such information, the Chief plished without interference or delay.
of Transportation arranged for the estab- The plan to increase redeployment by
lishment of a liaison staff at ESF head- utilizing aircraft resolved itself into two
quarters in New York. This staff, which projects. The Green Project, which in-
began functioning on 22 May, consisted of volved the assignment of additional trans-
an officer from the OCT and officers and port planes to the Air Transport Com-
enlisted men assigned by the port com- mand for transatlantic service, continued
manders at Boston, New York, Hampton until 10 September 1945 and transported
Roads, and Charleston. It maintained a about 166,000 troops from the ETO and
twenty-four-hour watch and made one the MTO to the United States. At its
comprehensive report to the port com- height the undertaking exceeded some-
manders each day in addition to such what the target of 50,000 troops per
special reports as might be found month, but in August the Army began to
necessary.78 withdraw aircraft from it as part of a plan
With the arrival of V-E Day the adjust- to augment the flow of troops from the
ments that had been planned for the port United States to the western Pacific. The
staging areas were placed in effect. The White Project involved the transportation
procedures for the operation of disposition of AAF crews and such other personnel as
centers for disbanding Category IV units could be accommodated in bombers that
had been recently tested at the New York were being returned from Europe to the
Port of Embarkation, and such centers zone of interior. About 85,000 men were
80
were immediately placed in operation by returned in this manner.
the port commanders at Boston, Hamp- 78
Msg, Mvmts Div OCT to CG BPE, et al., 18 May
79
ton Roads, and New Orleans, as well as at 45, OCT HB Mvmts Div Griffin Staybacks; Rpts of
New York. Redeployment areas were Returning Troops Br and Liaison Staff in Mvmts Div
Hist for Jun 45, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
established by these port commanders to 79
OCT Misc Ltr 159, 14 May 45; 1st Ind, NYPE
handle Category II troops, which were for CofT, 18 Jun 45; both in OCT HB TC Gen
being sent on to the Pacific. A section of Redepl. The latter document outlines readjustments
made at NYPE for handling inbound troops.
the staging area at the Charleston Port of 80
WD press release, 23 Jul 45, sub: 125,370 Troops
Embarkation, which handled a relatively Flown from Europe Since May 1; Memo, ACofS
small volume of troop traffic, was desig- OPD for CofS USA, 4 Aug 45, sub: AAF Plan for
Increasing Pacific Troop Lift, and other documents
nated to serve as a disposition center or in OPD 320.2 TS, Sec. V; data provided by Hist Br,
redeployment area as conditions might re- Int Div MATS, 19 Jun 51, OCT HB TC Gen Redepl.
190 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

The number of troops arriving in the was involved. The demand for Pullman
United States from the European and equipment, which had been heavy
Mediterranean theaters during June was throughout the war, now became heavier,
much greater than the number that had and the new troop sleepers that had been
been forecast. Early in May the Chief of ordered after V-E Day were not yet
Transportation had estimated that June available.
arrivals by water would approximate The carriers were able to provide trans-
107,000; this estimate was later revised to portation for the heavy movements from
154,000 and actual arrivals were slightly the ports, but they frequently were unable
in excess of 236,000. The increase was ex- to provide sleeping cars for soldiers who
plained by the Movements Division on were entitled to them under Army regu-
several grounds. The Navy's discontinu- lations. Many complaints were received
ance of troopship convoys on 4 June per- through Congressional and other chan-
mitted faster turnaround of the vessels. nels because returning veterans were re-
The resort to maximum overloading on quired to make long trips without proper
all vessels ordered by the General Staff sleeping facilities. General Gross had al-
added substantially to the capacity of each ready given the Office of Defense Trans-
ship. Several ships that had been sched- portation his opinion that a "firm denial
uled for direct sailings to the Pacific were of transportation means to the public"
used for one voyage in the North Atlantic. would be necessary and had suggested
The Army Air Forces also exceeded ex- ways of making more sleeping cars avail-
pectations by landing 56,000 troops in the able for troops.83 On 26 June the matter
United States under the Green and White was again presented to the ODT in a joint
Projects.81 The total of approximately letter from the Army, the Navy, the Coast
292,000 troops landed on the Atlantic sea- Guard, and the Marine Corps. The
board by water and air in June was armed forces expressed concern because
exceeded by about 49,000 in July, when of "the inadequate response" made thus
341,00 were returned to the United States far in the provision of passenger equip-
82
from the ETO and the MTO. ment for military personnel returning
from overseas. They stated that between
The impact of the unexpectedly heavy 1 and 24 June, 143,000 Army troops had
influx of troops on the American railroads traveled an average distance of 1,251
was severe. All of the returning soldiers, miles in coaches because sleepers were not
whether they were being redeployed or provided; meanwhile regular overnight
demobilized, had to make a number of sleeping car services were being main-
trips in quick succession. The entire proc- tained for the general public. While
ess was geared to speed, which gave no recognizing that the manner of meeting
opportunity to regulate the flow and level the military need must be left to the ODT
off the peaks. Many of the troops arriving 81
Ltr, Johnson, Dir ODT, to USW, 18 Jul 45, OCT
from Europe and the Mediterranean were 511; Memo, Finlay for Farr, 23 Jul 45, and reply 24
destined for personnel centers in distant Jul 45, OCT 387 Demob Plng.
82
western states. The traffic from the eastern Ltr, SW to Sen William F. Knowland, 30 Oct 45,
WDCSA 370.01, Sec. VIII, Cases 221-320.
ports was largely one-way, so that a great 83
Ltr, Gross to Johnson, 30 May 45, OCT HB
deal of deadheading of railway equipment Gross ODT.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 191

and the carriers, the armed forces sug- cars as had been reported; they were all
gested that Pullman equipment be with- standard, steel day coaches. He objected
drawn from all regular routes of 400 miles to the implication in Mr. Patterson's state-
or less and that reservations for sleeping ment that the entire blame for the neces-
car space be restricted to a period of five sity of carrying soldiers across the conti-
84
or six days in advance of the journey. nent in day coaches lay with the ODT
Early in July the press carried the story and the carriers. Rather, he contended,
of a movement of 500 officers and enlisted the War Department had never consulted
men from Camp Myles Standish in Mas- the ODT regarding any of its troop move-
sachusetts to Camp Beale in California ments and had not kept the ODT in-
that had been made in day coaches. Dur- formed regarding the fluctuations in the
ing the trip a rumor spread among the volume of its redeployment traffic. He re-
troops to the effect that sleeping cars had ferred particularly to the great increase in
been passed that were occupied by Ger- troop arrivals from Europe and the Med-
man prisoners of war. The investigation iterranean during June compared with
that followed disclosed that the cars as- earlier estimates, and the prospective in-
signed to this movement were entirely crease in July arrivals. He stated: "If you
unsuitable for so long a trip, but failed to expect transportation to be furnished ade-
locate any member of the party who quately, the Office of Defense Transporta-
claimed to have actually seen prisoners of tion and the Association of American
war in sleeping cars. In his news confer- Railroads must be informed of any such
ence on 5 July, Under Secretary of War fluctuations."86
Robert P. Patterson was requested to give Mr. Patterson promptly answered these
the facts concerning the matter. He stated charges. He asserted that whether or not
that the report regarding prisoners of war the cars assigned to the movement in
was not true and that sleeping cars were question were, strictly speaking, com-
never used for such traffic except in the muter types they were quite unsuitable for
few cases where prisoners were also hospi- transcontinental travel. He did not be-
tal patients. Referring to the assignment lieve that lack of detailed information re-
of day coaches, Mr. Patterson observed garding projected movements justified the
that the War Department some weeks failure to provide proper equipment. He
previously had called the situation to the cited various occasions on which the ODT
attention of the railroads and the Office of and the railroads had been warned of the
Defense Transportation and had urged heavy demand that would be made on
that sleepers be provided for long trips,
84
but that adequate relief had not yet been Ltr, Armed Forces to Johnson, 26 Jun 45, OCT
HB Gross ODT. Concerning the Canadian Govern-
forthcoming.85 ment's control of the use of rail equipment, see Ltr,
The public statement by the Under Thomas C. Lockwood, Canadian Transport Con-
Secretary of War brought a vigorous re- troller, to johnson, 15 Jun 45, and Ltr, Gross to Lock-
wood, 21 Jun 45, both in OCT HB Gross ODT.
sponse from the Director of Defense 85
Memo for the press, 5 Jul 45, ASF Hq Control
Transportation and also some counter- Div 531.2. Reports and affidavits concerning this
charges. Mr. Johnson denied that the cars troop movement are in OCT HB Wylie Troop
Mvmts.
used for the trip from Camp Myles Stand- 86
Ltr, Johnson to Patterson, 6 Jul 45, ASF Hq
ish to Camp Beale had been commuter Control Div 531.2.
192 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

them for equipment and the specific sug- my's transportation system while at the
gestions that had been made to increase same time allowing our own to
the number of sleepers available for troops. deteriorate.88
He asserted that with regard to withdraw- Since General Gross was in Europe at
ing additional sleepers from regular serv- the time of the hearing, the Chief of Trans-
ices the Army had observed a "hesitating portation's position was presented to the
attitude" on the part of the carriers and a committee by Maj. Gen. John M. Frank-
"desire to escape a direct solution." The lin, Acting Chief of Transportation, aided
Under Secretary added that in order to by Colonel Finlay, Executive. Their state-
meet the charge that the load had not ments indicated that the Office of the
been adequately defined for the ODT, the Chief of Transportation, in accordance
Chief of Transportation thereafter would with arrangements in effect throughout
furnish the ODT with all forecasts and the war, had furnished advance informa-
any modifications that might become tion regarding specific troop shipments to
necessary.87 the Association of American Railroads,
The Senate Special Committee Inves- which then took steps to provide the re-
tigating the National Defense Program quired equipment. The OCT had pro-
took cognizance of the complaints regard- vided the Director of Defense Transporta-
ing the transportation furnished to return- tion with forecasts of the number of troops
ing troops and the controversy over re- to arrive each month, but had not given
sponsibility for the situation. The commit- him further details because such details
tee's hearings gave Mr. Johnson an had not been requested and he had no
opportunity to review his differences with apparent need for them. The failure to
the armed forces and the circumstances keep Johnson currently informed regard-
that he felt had intensified the problem. ing the increase of redeployment traffic
He reiterated his contention that the over forecasts was explained on the ground
Army had failed to keep him properly in- that in the new undertaking to bring large
formed regarding the volume of railway numbers of troops back to the United
traffic to be expected as a result of rede- States the excess of shipments over esti-
ployment, and that in the absence of such mates became apparent only from day to
information adequate plans to meet the day. In the testimony on behalf of the
requirements for equipment could not be Chief of Transportation, the point was
made. This, however, was only the imme-
diate cause of the difficulty. Deeper causes 87
Ltrs, Patterson to Johnson, 9 Jul 45 and 26 Jul 45,
lay in the failure throughout the war to both in OCT 511 Redepl; Memo, CofT for Dir Opns
OCT, et al., 1 Aug 45, sub: Rpts of Troop Mvmts for
make adequate provision for new railway ODT, OCT 511 1943-45. In a letter to the Under
equipment and for the protection of rail- Secretary of War, Mr. Johnson denied that there had
way manpower. These failures were been any disposition to withhold equipment from the
military services and attributed any such appearance
largely due to the heavy demands of the to lack of adequate information with which to work.
armed forces for military equipment and (Ltr, Div OCT to USW, 18 Jul 45, OCT 511 Redepl).
88
military manpower, and Mr. Johnson Press release by the committee, 19 Jul 45, ASF
stressed the point, which he had made Hq Contl Div 032.3 Mead Committee; Senate Special
Committee Investigating the National Defense Pro-
before, that it was inconsistent to make gram, 79th Cong., 1st Sess., Hearings, July 23 and 24,
extraordinary efforts to destroy the ene- 1945.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 193

stressed that the problem was not one of involving this issue was not a sympathetic
furnishing equipment for the movement one.
of troops, since that was already being The contention of the Director of De-
done, but one of providing sleeping cars fense Transportation that throughout the
for those who were required to make long war the requirements of the domestic
89
trips. carriers for new equipment and man-
Reading the testimony and related cor- power had been neglected because of the
respondence, one cannot escape the con- heavy demands of the armed forces goes
clusion that neither party was without to the heart of the problem of war produc-
fault. If the Director of Defense Trans- tion and manpower utilization. The
portation, feeling that he was not being armed forces had been given certain stra-
kept properly informed, had requested tegic objectives, and their requirements
more up-to-date and detailed information, for soldiers, equipment, and supplies were
he undoubtedly would have received all based on their estimates of what was
the data that were available. He did not necessary to accomplish those objectives.
do this, however, until eight weeks after They did not fail to recognize the impor-
V-E Day, when the use of unsuitable tance of the transportation industry in the
equipment to transport troops was receiv- military effort and made certain conces-
ing widespread publicity. On the other sions to aid the carriers, but those conces-
hand, it is difficult to understand why the sions were not sufficient to meet the ODT
Chief of Transportation, having repeatedly point of view. In this connection two
asserted that the Director of Defense aspects of the military point of view must
Transportation was responsible for the be understood. With regard to transporta-
adequacy of transportation to meet the tion equipment, the Army contended that
Army's need, should not have voluntarily the military need could and should be met
provided that official with any and all in- with the available facilities by restricting
formation bearing on the extent of the the civilian use of transportation for non-
need. essential purposes. With regard to man-
Several weeks after the issue came into power, the Army believed that the
the open, Under Secretary Patterson in a problems of both industry and the mili-
letter to John W. Snyder, Director, Office tary forces could have been greatly eased
of War Mobilization and Reconversion, by a more judicious use of the nation's
stated that the failure to keep Mr. John- labor force, possibly under a national
91
son fully informed had been due partly to service law.
inadvertence and partly to the lack of a As a result of the situation that devel-
clear understanding of the type of infor- oped in June and early July, several orders
mation desired.90 This no doubt is a fair were issued by the ODT to regulate the
statement. More fundamental are the
89
facts that Johnson and Gross did not agree Hearings cited n. 88, July 27, 1945.
90
Ltr, Patterson to Snyder, 30 Jul 45, OCT HB
regarding the extent to which civilian Gross ODT. For a summary of the information given
travel should be curtailed in favor of mili- the ODT, see TWX Conf, Gen Franklin, et al, in
tary traffic, and that while in many Washington with Gen Gross in Berlin, 24 Jul 45, OCT
HB TC Gen Redepl.
respects the two offices co-operated freely 91
For a fuller discussion of these issues, see Ward-
the relationship between them on matters low, op. cit., pp. 328-41.
194 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

use of railroad passenger cars. The car- to consolidate small groups whenever
riers were directed not to reserve, allocate, possible in order to conserve car space,
or sell reserve seats or sleeping car space and officers ordering such movements
more than 120 hours in advance of the were directed to set dates between which
scheduled departure of the train.92 The the movement might be made, rather
measure was designed to check the prac- than specific dates.98 Local transportation
tice adopted by some individuals and officers were again reminded that they
business firms of tying up space for which must give the carriers as much advance
they did not have a specific or legitimate notice of their equipment requirements as
need. The operation of sleeping cars on possible.99 The passenger associations of
routes of 450 miles or less was prohibited. the railroads were urged to select the
The ODT stated that as a result of this shortest routes for troop movements so far
order about 900 sleeping cars were with- as practicable.100 The regulation provid-
drawn from regular service and placed in ing that troops were entitled to sleeping
a pool for use of the military forces.93 All car accommodations for overnight trips
railway passenger coaches were placed in was temporarily suspended, and transpor-
a pool to be employed under the direction tation officers were directed not to request
of the ODT, and the chairman of the Gar sleeping cars for trips of less than forty-
Service Division of the Association of eight hours.101 The Chief of Transporta-
American Railroads was designated the tion maintained a time record for each
agent of the ODT to administer the movement, indicating each step in the
order.94 The armed forces were required, process of ordering equipment and mov-
when making organized military move- ing troops, in order to ascertain where un-
ments, to place three persons in each sleep- necessary delays were encountered.102
ing car section and corresponding coach A plan of "rotational sleeping," which
space. This requirement made uniform
the practice the Army had followed 92
ODT GO 52, 29 Jun 45.
throughout the war and brought to an 93
ODT GO 53, 7 Jul 45; ODT, Civilian War
end the Navy's insistence on placing only Transport, pp. 82. 83.
94
two men in a section.95 The ODT had ODT GO 55, 17 Jul 45.
95
ODT GO 56, 20 Jul 45; Ltr, SW to SN, 5 Jul 45;
proposed that four soldiers be placed in a Ltr, SN to SW, 13 Jul 45; last two in G-4 510, Vol. III.
section, but the Army refused to concur 96
Ltr, Johnson to Patterson, 30 Jun 45; Ltr, Patter-
contending that such crowding was "be- son to Johnson, 4 Jul 45; both in ASF Control Div
531.2.
yond practicable limits," and pointing 97
Memo, ACofS G-4 for CofS and SW, 3 Aug 45;
out the unfairness of requiring soldiers to Ltr, SW to Dir ODT, 6 Aug 45; Ltr, Acting SW to
travel under such conditions when civil- Dir ODT, 22 Aug 45; all in G-4 510, Vol. III.
98
WD Cir 199, 3 Jul 45.
ians "vacation-bent" could have sole 99
WD CTB 35, 10 Jul 45.
occupancy of berths.96 100
Memos, CofT for the respective passenger asso-
A number of measures were taken by ciations, 18 Jul 45 and 26 Jul 45, OCT 387 Demob
PlngRedepl Traf.
the Army to relieve the acute transporta- 101
Msg, TAG for SvCs, 11 Jul 45; Memo, CofT for
tion situation. The War Department re- TAG, 9 Aug 45, sub: Sleeping Car Equip, AG 510
newed its instructions on reducing official (27Aug42)(2).
102
Ltr, White to IMC, 25 Jun 45, OCT 531.7 Train
military travel wherever practicable.97 Service; Memo, MTS for White, 7 Aug 45, OCT 080
Local transportation officers were directed AAR.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 195

promised a substantial saving in sleeping portation officers, particularly those at


car space, was tried by the Transportation personnel centers, were encouraged to
Corps in July. The two trains that were keep in mind the possibility of using the
operated experimentally on this basis highway carriers when they offered supe-
were made up of both sleepers and rior service.105
coaches. The troops that had occupied the The Director of Defense Transportation
sleepers during half of the day were also recommended that the War Depart-
moved to the coaches, and the troops that ment endeavor to arrange a more even
had occupied the coaches were moved to flow of troops into the Atlantic coast ports.
the sleepers. Theoretically the plan He pointed out that during a ten-day
seemed good, but in practice it presented period in mid-July approximately 30,000
difficulties and accordingly was not em- troops had arrived on each of two peak
ployed further. Aside from the inevitable days, whereas the daily average for the
disorder involved in changing cars, the period was less than 12,000. The War De-
transfer of troops from air-conditioned partment recognized that such heavy con-
sleepers to non-air-conditioned coaches in centrations placed an unusual burden on
midsummer created more dissension than the railroads, but it stated that in order to
if the men had been obliged to travel in carry out the plan to return troops from
103
coaches all the way. Europe as quickly as possible and to be in
The Director of Defense Transportation a position to transfer ships to the Pacific
requested the Army to ascertain whether for a rapid build-up against Japan, it had
greater use could be made of airlift and to make maximum use of the vessels. An
motorbuses in the effort to lighten the attempt to smooth out the inbound flow
load on the railroads. The Army Air of troops would involve retarding some of
Forces determined that it would be prac- the ships, which the War Department did
ticable to release from seventy-five to not consider feasible.106 It was evident also
eighty transport planes and about 260 that the measures taken had somewhat
airline pilots then in the service, and to improved the military sleeping car situa-
place the equipment and personnel at the tion, for General Williamson was able to
disposal of the transcontinental com- report on 28 July that during the preced-
mercial airlines for their use in transport- ing ten days the carriers had provided
ing military passengers. This supple- sleeping cars for all movements of forty or
mentary airlift was expected to provide
transcontinental passage for about 25,000 103
WD press release, 20 Jul 45; Interv with Maj
troops per month. The project was ap- Farley, 24 May 51; both in OCT HB TG Gen Redepl.
Major Farley represented the Traffic Control Divi-
proved by the War Department late in sion, OCT, as an observer on one of these trips.
July, but the commercial airlines did not 104
See below, pp. 208-09; Memo, Maj William H.
begin moving troops until after the Japa- Henderson, Jr., for ACofS G-4, 19 Jul 45, sub: Inves-
nese surrender.104 The use of buses in lieu tigation of Air Lift; Memo, CG AAF for CofS USA,
27 Jul 45; Ltr, USW to Dir ODT, 31 Jul 45; all in G-4
of rail transportation was limited by the 510, Vol. III.
agreement between the armed forces and 105
Memo, CofT for ACofS G-4, 31 Jul 45, sub: Use
the railroads to cases where the highway of Commercial Bus Lines; WD CTB 43, 23 Aug 45;
both in AG 537 (31 Jul 45).
carriers could provide more satisfactory 106
Ltr, Dir ODT to USW, 24 Jul 45; Ltr, USW to
service than the rail lines, but local trans- Dir ODT, 31 Jul 45; both in G-4 510, Vol. III.
196 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

more troops when the travel time was early delivery of the 1,200 special troop
forty-eight hours or more.107 sleepers on order influenced the decision.
Because of the several categories of
troops that were in a sense competing for The heavy and steady flow of troops
the available sleeping car space, the from port staging areas to personnel cen-
Traffic Control Division in the Office of ters gave rise to some new problems in the
the Chief of Transportation had employed operation of troop trains. The number of
an informal plan of priority throughout troop train commanders had to be greatly
the war. In August 1945 this plan was increased, and many inexperienced offi-
elaborated and adopted by all of the cers had to be trained to perform the ex-
armed forces.108 The joint preference acting duties; arrangements were made so
agreement was applicable to all carload that they could shuttle back and forth
traffic moving under the Joint Military with as little delay as possible. In addition
Passenger Agreement and to individuals to the train commander, the commander
engaging sleeping car space through the of a staging area assigned a group super-
government reservation bureaus. First visor for the troops destined for a single
preference was given to hospital and litter personnel center, a car leader for each car,
patients regardless of the distance to be and the required number of kitchen and
traveled. Second preference was given to mess personnel. The Chief of Transporta-
troops moving to staging areas or replace- tion issued a special pamphlet setting
ment depots for shipment overseas. Third forth in detail the responsibilities of the
preference was applicable to redeployed staging area commanders and the troop
troops moving from ports of debarkation train complements.109 Pending the de-
to personnel centers and from personnel livery of the new kitchen cars ordered in
centers to assembly stations before embar- May, arrangements were made with the
kation for Pacific destinations, and also to railroads for the assignment of additional
certain civilian technicians moving under baggage cars to be converted to kitchen
military orders. The remaining traffic was cars. In July there were 500 baggage cars
covered by preferences four and five. in this pool.110
Within a preference category, priority was
given to the movement involving the Although traffic calculations were nec-
greatest number of nights of travel. This essarily tentative and were completely
joint preference agreement did not go as upset by the early surrender of Japan, the
far as the Chief of Transportation had forecasts prepared in the Office of the
gone in directing that movements of less Chief of Transportation after two months
than forty-eight hours should use coaches; 107
Ltr, Williamson to ODT, 28 Jul 45, OCT HB
it provided instead that movements of 450 Gross ODT.
108
miles or less would not use sleepers unless Ltr, C of Traf Contl Div to AAR, 7 Aug 45,
OCT 531.7 Preference Plan; WD CTB 40, 13 Aug 45,
the cars otherwise would have to be dead- sub: Preference Plan for Ordering and Furnishing
headed, and that movements involving Pullman Equip, OCT HB Traf Contl Div Pass.
109
only one night en route would use coaches TC Cir 100-10, revised 13 Jun 45, sub: Mvmts
if they were available. Probably the im- to Pers Centers; ASF Cir 253, 3 Jul 45, Sec. I; TC Cir
101-2, 11 Aug 45; TC Pamphlet 45, 11 Aug 45, sub:
provement in the sleeping car situation TC Manual for St Area and Troop Train Comdrs.
110
that occurred in July and the prospect of OCT HB Monograph 22, p. 124.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 197

of experience with redeployment are of ments had been worked out, and they
113
interest. They give an indication of the were placed in effect at once. The
rates at which troop withdrawals from records of the Chief of Transportation's
inactive theaters and the build-up of Movements Division, showing the position
strength in the Pacific were to have been of all ships and the troop units en route or
accomplished, and of the effect of this re- scheduled for movement, facilitated this
deployment on troop travel within the action. Eighteen troopships that were en
United States. According to these forecasts route between Europe and the Panama
the heaviest shipments of troops from in- Canal destined for the Pacific were di-
active theaters would be in July, the verted to U.S. east coast ports. Twenty
heaviest shipments of troops from the troopships at or en route to Marseille and
United States to the Pacific would be in Naples to embark troops for the Pacific
November, and the arrivals of units in the were ordered to embark troops for dis-
Pacific would reach a crest in December. charge in the United States. Twenty-four
(Chart 5) The volume of Army rail traffic freighters carrying organizational equip-
in organized movements (forty or more ment from Europe to the Pacific were di-
troops), which had attained a monthly verted to U.S. east coast ports. The troop
peak of 1,001,000 passengers in April 1943 movements scheduled to leave U.S. west
and then had declined to slightly over coast ports for the Pacific during August
430,000 just before the German surrender were not greatly affected by the cessation
when the larger part of the Army was of hostilities. High-point men were
overseas, was expected to reach almost screened out, but otherwise units and re-
1,500,000 in some months in late 1945 placements sailed as planned, and the
111
and early 1946. number of Army personnel embarked for
Of the total force of somewhat more the Pacific in August (about 158,000) far
than 400,000 troops that was to have been exceeded that of any previous month.
redeployed directly from the European These troops, and the smaller numbers
and Mediterranean theaters to the Pacific, shipped in subsequent months, were in-
approximately 155,000 had been em- tended to relieve from occupational duty
barked when the end of hostilities dis- troops that had already seen long service
rupted the redeployment plan. Of this overseas.114
number, 117,000 were from the ETO 111
Chart prepared in Transport Economics Br,
and most of them had been embarked at Traf Contl Div, OCT, 4 Jul 45, OCT HB Gen
Marseille. The 38,000 shipped from the Redepl.
112
MTO had been embarked at Naples and ASF MPR, Oct 45, Sec. 3, p. 16. For a discus-
sion of assembly areas and port staging areas for
Leghorn.112 troops being shipped from Europe as well as the work
of the Redeployment Coordinating Group, which
functioned in Europe, see Sparrow, op. cit., pp.
Repatriation After the Surrender of Japan 178-97.
113
Memo, TAG for CGs AAF, AGF, et al., 14 Aug
45, sub: Procedure for Disposition of Units, etc., Upon
Although the Japanese surrender on 14 Surrender of Japan, AG 370.01 (13 Aug 45).
114
August 1945 came much earlier than had Mvmts Div Hists for Aug, Sep, Oct 45, OCT HB
Mvmts Div Gen. Movements of cargo ships carrying
been expected, plans for making the nec- maintenance supplies were more extensively affected,
essary adjustments in oversea troop move- as will be explained in Ch. V, below.
CHART 5FORECAST OF TROOP REDEPLOYMENT, PREPARED BY THE CHIEF OF TRANSPOR-
TATION, AS OF 11 JULY 1945
DEPARTURES FROM EUROPE AND OTHER INACTIVE THEATERS

* Since this diagram is intended to indicate monthly additions to strength in the Pacific, it does not include replacements.
Source: Charts A, C, and D, prepared by the Planning Division, OCT; copies in OCT HB TC General, Redeployment.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 199

When Japan surrendered the Army had port inland all of the soldiers that the
about 4,500,000 troops overseas. The size Transportation Corps could land at the
of the occupational forces had not been ports. In order to shorten the rail haul as
fixed, but it was calculated that more than much as possible, they suggested that
3,500,000 of these troops would have to be troops returning from Europe be re-
repatriated as soon as possible. The Army grouped at the oversea staging areas and
realized that there would be an insistent embarked on ships that would land them
popular demand for speedy demobiliza- at the U.S. ports nearest the separation
tion and that regardless of the rate of centers for which they were destined, and
repatriation it could not be fast enough to also that troops returning from the Pa-
satisfy the desires of the soldiers and their cific be assembled at Hawaii and similarly
relatives. Nevertheless, the military au- regrouped for discharge at the ports near-
thorities assured the nation that all re- est their separation centers. General Gross,
sources would be utilized to bring the while recognizing the merit of these sug-
troops home and return them to civilian gestions from the standpoint of the rail-
life. General Somervell and several mem- roads, saw only limited possibility of put-
bers of his staff held a press conference on ting them into effect because the proposed
16 August, in which many aspects of the arrangements would interfere with the
demobilization plans were explained. On operation of the point systemwhich was
that occasion General Gross stated that in being closely followed in determining the
the months to come the movement of sol- order in which soldiers would be repatri-
diers to the United States would far ex- atedand because they would involve an
ceed anything achieved during redeploy- "extravagant use of shipping capacity." 116
ment. He asserted that every available The discussions between General Gross
ship would be used, and at the same time and the AAR did not bring about a com-
emphasized that the load on the Ameri- plete meeting of the minds regarding the
can railroads would be exceedingly heavy. extent of military rail traffic during repa-
"All of us at home," he said, "must be triation or the manner in which it would
prepared to accept inconveniences in be accommodated. General Gross wanted
order that the reunion of families in peace a specific statement from the carriers as to
may be accomplished as quickly as possi- the number of troops they would be able
ble." 115 He meant, of course, that regular to handle. The response of the Association
railway services would have to be further of American Railroads was that the only
reduced in order to provide adequate and limiting factor would be the extent to
suitable transportation for troops. which civilian travel could be reduced, a
response that left the point unsettled. The
During August General Gross discussed AAR wanted a firm estimate of the num-
at length with the Association of Ameri- ber of troops to be landed at U.S. ports
can Railroads the heavy burden that during succeeding months. General Gross
would fall on the carriers when repatria- could only state that, while he had pro-
tion from both Europe and the Pacific got
115
under way. AAR officials were confident ASF press conf, 16 Aug 45, OCT HB TC Gen
Demob.
that by giving preference to military over 116
Ltr, Buford to Gross, 13 Aug 45, and reply, 17
civilian traffic the railroads could trans- Aug 45, both in OCT 387 Demob Plng.
200 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

vided and would continue to provide the ian traffic. Although the joint preference
best possible estimates, the figures neces- agreement made by the armed forces in
sarily would be tentative for a period be- August allowed greater latitude, General
cause of the suddenness with which the Gross had also agreed with the ODT that
war had ended and the necessity of com- Army personnel would use coaches for
pletely revising troop movement and trips of less than forty-eight hours unless
117
shipping plans. sleepers were available that otherwise
The rate of repatriation from Europe would have to be deadheaded, and he in-
depended chiefly on the amount of ship- sisted that the latter agreement was being
ping that could be assigned, but the rate honored. The ODT, on the other hand,
from the western Pacific was affected by a presented data to show that it was not
number of factors. General MacArthur's being uniformly carried out, and con-
troops were scattered among many small tended that the failure of the carriers in
and widely separated bases, and it was some instances to provide sleepers for trips
uncertain how quickly they could be of more than forty-eight hours was due to
transported to assembly areas for embar- their employment on shorter Army
kation on transpacific vessels.118 The num- hauls.122
ber of troops required for the occupation Late in August the Army learned that
of Japan was difficult to determine. Be- the railroads and the Pullman Company
cause of these imponderables, MacArthur desired to withdraw about 400 sleeping
could not at once give a firm estimate of cars from the military pool so that they
monthly shipments, and his early figures could be used in regular overnight serv-
were considerably below those that he ices. The Army notified both the Director
submitted later.119 As a result, the removal of Defense Transportation and the Direc-
of troops from Europe, which had been tor of War Mobilization and Reconversion
under way for three months and was 117
already well organized, made much better Ltr, Gross to Pelley, 2 1 Aug 45, and reply, 25
Aug 45, both in OCT 511, 1943-1945; Ltr, Gross to
progress during the early weeks of the re- Pelley, 31 Aug 45, OCT 080 AAR.
patriation period than did the return of 118
Eleven such assembly areas were established to
troops from the western Pacific. By late relieve transpacific troopships of the necessity of call-
ing at many small ports, thereby saving ship time. See
September, however, the situation in Gen- WD press release, 18 Oct 45, OCT HB TC Gen
eral MacArthur's command had become Demob Trans.
119
clearer and the deployment of shipping to WD press release, 10 Sep 45, sub: Target Dates
for Return of Troops, OCT HB TC Gen Demob;
meet the requirements was well under Memo, CofT for Dir Plans and Opns ASF, 2 Nov 45,
way.120 pars. 5 and 6, OCT HB Plng Div Mead Com.
120
The early negotiations on rail transpor- Rads between WD and CINCAFPAC, CM-
OUT 65131, 15 Sep 45; CM-IN 23948, 29 Sep 45;
tation for repatriated troops again brought CM-OUT 72042, 1 Oct 45.
out the differing attitudes of the Army and 121
See last paragraphs of Ltrs, Gross to Johnson, 14
the Director of Defense Transportation, Aug 45, and Johnson to Gross, 17 Aug 45; both in
OCT HB Gross ODT.
and these differences were sometimes ex- 122
Ltr, Gross to Johnson, 29 Aug 45; Ltr, Johnson
pressed with more candor than diplo- to Gross, 29 Aug 45; Ltr, Gross to Johnson, 4 Sep 45;
macy.121 The root issue was still the divi- Ltrs, Johnson to Gross and USW, 6 Sep 45; Ltr, USW
to Johnson, 10 Sep 45; Ltrs, Williamson to Johnson
sion of railroad equipment, especially and the Pullman Co., 19 Sep 45; all in OCT HB
sleeping cars, between military and civil- Gross ODT.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 201

of its opposition, with the result that the had requested the assignment of 200 addi-
cars were not withdrawn. 123 The Army's tional sleeping cars to the military pool,
view was that during repatriation more, he (Johnson) was of the opinion that mili-
rather than fewer, sleeping cars should be tary traffic already was using a dispropor-
assigned to the military pool, which served tionate share of the equipment. In support
all of the armed services. At about this of his contention, Johnson stated that on
time the Director of Defense Transporta- 12 September about 72 percent of these
tion took steps to abolish the government sleeping cars were in military service,
reservation bureaus, which the railroads leaving only 28 percent to serve the rest of
had maintained primarily for the benefit the nation. General Gross then presented
of military personnel traveling as individ- the following analysis from data available
uals, but reconsidered the plan when the to him:
armed forces made a joint protest.124 Sleeping Cars Number Percent
The Chief of Transportation evidently Total. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8,034 100.0
believed that there was nothing to be
gained by entering into detailed negotia- Cars in regular s e r v i c e . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,544 31.7
Cars in military service . . . . . . . . . . . 5,090 63.3
tions with the ODT regarding rail equip-
Standard and tourist sleepers in
ment. Late in August Mr. Johnson ap- troop service. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3,705 46.1
pointed a committee representing his own Special troop sleepers in troop
office, the Association of American Rail- service. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,237 15.4
roads, the Navy, the Marine Corps, and Standard sleepers in military
sleeping car lines. . . . . . . . . . . . 148 1.8
the Army to study military requirements
Gars under r e p a i r . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 400 5.0
and make recommendations to him. Col.
Joshua R. Messersmith, deputy chief of Johnson took no exception to these figures,
the Traffic Control Division, was the ap- but he stated that in his calculation of
pointee for the Army. When the time came cars in military service he had included
to approve the committee's final report, an estimate of the number of cars repre-
Messersmith did not attend the meeting. sented by the military personnel that used
126
In explaining his absence he informed Mr. the regular sleeper services.
Johnson, undoubtedly with the approval
of the Chief of Transportation, that since While the Chief of Transportation fore-
the War Department had no control over saw trouble in providing adequate rail
the distribution of equipment it would transportation after repatriation from the
neither accept nor reject any estimates Pacific got into full swing, the immediate
submitted by the AAR. He stated that the 123
Ltrs, USW to Dir ODT and Dir OWMR, 31
War Department provided the railroads Aug 45; Ltr, Dir OWMR to USW, 5 Sep 45; Ltr, Dir
and the Pullman Company with estimates ODT to USW, 6 Sep 45; all in OCT HB Gross ODT;
of its requirements and considered the Ltr, Buford to Gross, 18 Sep 45, OCT 531.2 Troop
carriers responsible for meeting such re- Sleepers.
124
See above, Ch. I, p. 65.
quirements "with dispatch and the same 125
Ltr, Messersmith to Johnson, 4 Sep 45; Ltr,
degree of efficiency and comfort as is Johnson to Messersmith, 7 Sep 45; Ltr, Johnson to
accorded the public." 125 USW, 7 Sep 45; all in OCT HB Gross ODT.
126
Ltr, Johnson to Gross, 12 Sep 45; Ltr, Gross to
In his response Johnson made it clear Johnson, 18 Sep 45; Ltr, Johnson to Gross, 21 Sep 45;
that whereas the Chief of Transportation all in OCT HB Gross ODT.
202 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS
131
problem confronting him was the build-up rivals of troopships. A Ship Regulating
of shipping capacity. He tackled the job Branch was organized in the Movements
aggressively, in co-operation with the War Division to control the flow of troops into
Shipping Administration and the Navy, the several ports in accordance with per-
and the results were gratifying. centages established by the railroads.132
On the day Japan surrendered there Representatives of the Chief of Transpor-
were 282 American-controlled vessels in tation and the Pacific coast Army port
U.S. Army troop service, including the commanders met at San Francisco early
small number of Liberties and Victories in September for a full discussion of all
on which conversion work had been com- matters pertaining to repatriation.133
pleted, and 5 vessels under British control. The task of simultaneously repatriating
The American pool was distributed 108 to Army and Navy personnel from many
transatlantic and 174 to transpacific scattered Pacific bases gave rise to new
routes.127 policies regarding the use of transportation
The repatriation fleet was rapidly in- facilities. Instead of the wartime policy of
creased. The program of Liberty ship and considering Army and Navy troopships in
Victory ship conversion was pressed. The a single pool and using them jointly, the
cessation of hostilities meant that naval Joint Chiefs of Staff in September decided
assault transports and naval combatant that all troop-carrying vessels in the Pa-
ships could be used for repatriation to a cific would be divided into two blocks, one
greater extent.128 As soon as they could be for the Army and one for the Navy. The
released from patient evacuation, hospital Joint Military Transportation Committee
ships were employed as passenger vessels. was assigned the task of allocating specific
Passenger space on freighters returning to vessels to the respective blocks in accord-
the United States was used for troops ance with the estimated requirements.
whenever practicable. For a time tankers The vessels in each block were to be oper-
also were employed in this way, but the ated primarily to meet the needs of the
practice had to be discontinued because service to which they were allocated, but
tankers were frequently diverted en route they could be used jointly when this would
and the troops were then landed at ports enable a larger number of passengers to
where there were no facilities for staging 127
Memo, Plng, Int, and Mvmts Div OCT for Hist
and processing them.129 Unit, 16 Oct 46, sub: Hist of Mvmts Contl Div to 15
In addition to increasing the repatri- Aug 46, OCT HB Mvmts Div Rpts.
128
Memo, Farr for Wylie, 15 Oct 45, OCT HB
ation fleet, other steps were taken to facili- Farr Staybacks.
tate the return of troops. The staging 129
Rad, WD to Theater Comdrs, 3 Oct 45, CM-
capacity at west coast ports, which had OUT 10998. 130
Overloading of Liberties in the Atlantic was
been limited during the war, was enlarged. stopped in October, but overloading of Victories con-
Overloading was continued to the extent tinued through November.
130 131
weather permitted. A liaison office, Hist of Returning Troop Br, 31 Oct 45, in
Mvmts Div Hist for Sep 45, OCT HB Mvmts Div
similar to the one established earlier on Gen.
the east coast, was set up in the headquar- 132
Hist of Ship Reg Br, 11 Dec 45, in Mvmts Div
ters of the Navy's Western Sea Frontier to Hist for Nov 45, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
133
Summary of West Coast Port Comdrs Conf on
keep the respective Army port command- Returning Troop Mvmts, 6-7 Sep 45, OCT HB Wylie
ers informed regarding prospective ar- Troop Mvmts.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 203

be embarked. The use of domestic trans- The complaints regarding the rate of
portation also was to be apportioned be- repatriation, the majority of which con-
tween the Army and the Navy according cerned the Pacific, alleged negligence on
to the number of troops to be moved the part of the Army in not using more
inland.134 cargo ships to transport returning troops.
Because of growing public criticism of The Army carefully explained its position
the rate at which troops were being re- in public statements and in private corre-
turned, the Chief of Transportation de- spondence. It pointed out that the ship-
cided in mid-November to issue a detailed ping facilities at the west coast ports were
statement to show what had been accom- operating at full capacity and that voyage
plished and what was in prospect.135 He repairs required by ships returning from
summarized the shipping then assigned to the Pacific already were overtaxing the
the repatriation of military personnel as yards that would have to make any fur-
follows:136 ther cargo ship conversions. Of the Lib-
Type Number erty ships selected for conversion early in
Total. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 7 1 the summer, the last had not been ready
for service until October, and the last con-
U.S.-controlled troopships . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 253
Converted Liberties. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 1 0
verted Victory ship would not be ready to
Converted V i c t o r i e s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87 sail until the end of November. Under
Hospital s h i p s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 these circumstances and in view of the fact
Naval assault t r a n s p o r t s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 178 that the peak of the repatriation move-
Naval combatant s h i p s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 1 1 ment would be reached in December, fur-
British t r o o p s h i p s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
ther cargo ship conversions were consid-
Of these 871 vessels with spaces for ered uneconomical. The Army stressed
1,370,479 troops, 400 vessels with 578,520 the inadvisability of placing troops on
spaces were employed in transatlantic freighters that were not properly equipped
services and 471 with 791,959 spaces were and explained why the hasty conversions
employed in the Pacific. All of the naval that had been made at Manila for the
assault vessels and most of the combatant return of troops to the United States had
vessels were in the Pacific. At that time been limited to a small number of
only about 45 percent of the troop space vessels.137
on these ships was available to the Army, 134
JCS Policy Memo 27, 21 Sep 45.
but more was expected to become avail- 135
WD press release, 20 Nov 45, OCT HB TC Gen
able as the Navy's repatriation program Demob Trans. 136
Conflicting statements have been made regard-
progressed. The Chief of Transportation ing the number of Liberties converted in 1945.
further explained that only one British Charles, Troopships of World War II, pp. 356-60, lists
vessel, the Queen Mary, remained in U.S. 201 actually converted in 1945 to carry 550 troops
each. The figure of 210 may include some Liberties
troop service because the British them- that had been permanently converted. Ninety-seven
selves had a large repatriation task, and Victories were converted, but 10 were assigned to the
that only two of the vessels that had been British in exchange for the Queen Mary; see Wardlow,
surrendered by Germany were being used op. cit.,WD 137
pp. 226-27, 301.
press release, 20 Nov 45, cited n. 135; letters
because the others could not have been in answer to complaints are filed in OCT 370.5 Re-
rehabilitated in time to be of great value turn of Troops from Overseas; messages regarding
conversions at Manila are in OCT 564 Cargo Vessels;
in repatriation. James R. Masterson, U.S. Army Transportation in
204 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

The Army further pointed out that in of troops that would be eligible for dis-
November, despite the wide dispersal of charge within ninety days, and to require
troops and the long voyages in the Pacific, the Army, the Navy, and the War Ship-
it was repatriating more than twice as ping Administration to give a full account-
many troops as had been returned from ing of ships used and not used for repatri-
Europe during the peak month following ation purposes.139 The War Department
World War I. It also stated that, since the was quick to provide such information as
removal of troops from the European and it possessed, although the resolutions were
Mediterranean theaters was so far ad- not formally adopted.
vanced, beginning in December many
fast troopships would be transferred from Air transport was used for the repatri-
the Atlantic to the Pacific so that the rate ation of troops after V-J Day, but not to
of repatriation from General MacArthur's the extent that it had been employed dur-
command would be accelerated. ing redeployment from Europe and the
These explanations did not convince Mediterranean. Two projects were set up
persons who were willing to accept at face for repatriating troops by air. In the Rain-
value the statements of soldiers that they bow Project transport planes were used
were eager to travel under any conditions from the middle of September to the mid-
so long as they were allowed to sail, or dle of November for the return of troops
were intrigued by the slogan "get the boys from North Africa, South America, and
home by Christmas." Such persons could the Caribbean. This project had a total
view the matter from a purely personal or lift during the two months of about 12,200.
sentimental standpoint, since they would In the Sunset Project bombers returning
not be responsible for the hardships im- from the Pacific transported as many
140
posed, nor affected by the complaints that troops as they could accommodate.
would be made by many soldiers after After the transport planes in the western
arrival in the United States. On Novem- Pacific had played their role in the deliv-
ber 27 maritime and longshore unions, ery of occupation forces to Japan, they
which were opposed to the policy of lay- also brought troops back to the zone of
ing up American cargo ships or turning interior.
them over to foreign countries, cham-
pioned the cause of the soldiers who were The heavy influx of troops at Pacific
still overseas and threatened one-day coast ports during November and Decem-
strikes to emphasize their position.138 On ber and the unevenness of the flow meant
the same day resolutions were introduced 138
Transcript of radio address by Joseph Curran,
in the House of Representatives to require Pres, National Maritime Union, over Mutual Broad-
the War Department to submit a forecast casting System, 27 Nov 45, OCT HB Gen Demob
Trans; The New York Times, November 29, 1945,
the Southwest Pacific Area, 1941-47, pp. 473-75, "Ship Unions to Quit Over Troop Delays."
139
OCT HB Monographs. Numerous cargo ships were H. Res. 420, 421, and 422, November 27, 1945;
hastily converted in the western Pacific to transport Ltr, SW to Rep Andrew J. May, Chm House Com on
soldiers from outlying bases to assembly ports, where Military Affairs, 11 Dec 45, Legislative and Liaison
they were to be embarked for the long transpacific Division WDSS, file on H. Res. 421.
140
voyage, and to repatriate Japanese soldiers to their Information furnished by the Hist Br, Int Div
homeland. MATS, 19 Jun 51, OCT HB Gen Redepl.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 205

that there were times when the railroads sleeper service was not a desirable action,
had more traffic than they could move the heavy influx of troops was the direct
promptly. The situation was more acute result of the public demand for speedy de-
on the Pacific coast than on the Atlantic mobilization and therefore no criticism
seaboard because the facilities of the west- could properly be made if the public were
ern rail lines were not as great and because deprived of sleeping cars on some of the
a larger percentage of the troops arriving shorter routes in order to give veterans
at western ports had long rail hauls ahead proper accommodations on long journeys.
of them.141 During this period the problem The armed forces accordingly had recom-
of providing sleeping cars for the troops mended that sleeping cars be withheld
entitled to them gave way to the problem from regular sleeping car services of less
of moving the traffic by any means. On than 500 milesinstead of 450 miles as
23 November the Chief of Transportation provided for in the existing regulation
144
indicated that numerous troops had been while the military need was so great.
held at the ports for four days, and a few This recommendation was not placed in
for more than seven days, rather than be- effect, but about 1,000 additional day
ing cleared in the specified forty-eight coaches were assigned to troop service.
hours.142 Thereafter the situation became The effect of the peak repatriation
progressively worse, and on 25 December movement on the carriers is reflected in
the number of troops held at Pacific ports two statements issued by the Association
beyond forty-eight hours because of lack of American Railroads. In mid-December
of transportation reached a peak of 99,000. the AAR reported that the carriers' total
The port staging areas and improvised equipment embraced 10,217 all-steel
housing facilities were not able to absorb coaches suitable for long distance service,
the backlog so that as many as 40,000 men and 8,200 sleeping cars of which 1,400
had been kept on the ships overnight were government-owned troop sleepers.
rather than being debarked immediately More than one third of the coaches and
upon arrival.143 This situation existed de- about four fifths of the sleepers were being
spite the fact that additional rail equip- used in troop trains, and in addition large
ment was assigned to the western lines and numbers of military personnel were using
that cars were deadheaded back to the the regular trains.145 A few days later the
ports as quickly as they discharged their AAR announced that during the two
loads at the inland personnel centers. 141
In his public statement of 20 November, cited
Early in November the armed forces n. 135, the Chief of Transportation stated that in
had made a final joint appeal to the Direc- October 82 percent of the troops arriving at west
coast ports were entitled to sleeping cars as compared
tor of Defense Transportation for the with 34.5 percent debarking on the east coast.
assignment of additional sleepers to troop 142
Memo, CofT for Legislative and Liaison Div
movements from the Pacific coast. They WDSS, sub: Delays of Troop Mvmts, OCT 511.
143
ASF MPR, Dec 45, Sec. 3, p. 3; Hist of Return-
had pointed out that the number of repa- ing Troops Br, 16 Jan 45, in Mvmts Div Hist for Dec
triated veterans who were required to 45, OCT HB Mvmts Div Gen.
144
travel from coast to coast in coaches was Ltr, Armed Forces to Dir ODT, 8 Nov 45, OCT
510 Veterans.
increasing daily. They had stated that, 145
Ltr, AAR to Sen Joseph C. O'Mahoney, 17 Dec
while a further curtailment of regular 45, OCT 510 Veterans.
206 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS
CHART 6PASSENGERS DEBARKED MONTHLY BY THE ARMY AT U.S. PORTS FROM OVERSEA
COMMANDS: 1943-1946*

* Passengers include all Army troops debarked from ships under Army, Navy, and British control, plus naval, Allied
military, civilian personnel, and prisoners of war debarked from ships under Army control. The percentage relationship
that Army troops bore to the total was 47.4 in 1943, 61.1 in 1944, 95.6 in 1945, and 94.4 in 1946.
Source: ASF Statistical Review, World War II, pp. 126-27, through August 1945; later months from data compiled
for statistical volume of this series, From Recapitulation of Passengers Debarked and predecessor reports from the ports of
embarkation to the Chief of Transportation.

weeks that ended on 19 December the percent of these passengers were Army
railroads had moved a daily average of troops, the remainder being naval person-
thirty-six special troop trains from the Pa- nel, military personnel of Allied nations,
cific coast, carrying slightly more than and civilians. West coast ports received
19,000 servicemen; including those accom- 387,130, while Atlantic and Gulf ports de-
modated on regular trains, the daily move- barked 447,340. A comparison of arrivals
ment of servicemen had been about during this peak month with preceding
25,000. The AAR further stated that on and succeeding months may be made by
the basis of estimates furnished by the referring to Chart 6. Passengers debarking
Army and the Navy earlier in the fall it during the years 1945 and 1946 were dis-
had planned to handle about 14,000 serv- tributed among the ports as shown in
icemen per day at the peak.146 The in- Chart 7, and passengers debarking during
creased military load, it emphasized, was 146
AAR press release, 21 Dec 45, OCT HB Gen
being handled against a background of Demob Trans.
heavy pre-Christmas civilian travel. 147
This figure may be compared with 343,786 de-
During the month of December 1945, barked by the Army during the month of June 1919,
which was the peak of the repatriation movement
834,470 passengers arrived at U.S. ports after World War I; see Annual Report of the Chief of
under Army auspices.147 More than 99 Transportation Service, 1919, p. 31.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 207
CHART 7PASSENGERS DEBARKED BY THE ARMY AT THE RESPECTIVE U.S. PORTS:
1945-1946a

a
b
Concerning passengers included, see note to chart 6.
Boston was inactive during 1946.
c
New York includes a small number of passengers debarked at the Philadelphia cargo port.
d
e
Hampton Roads includes a small number of passengers debarked at the Baltimore cargo port.
New Orleans includes a small number of passengers debarked at Mobile and Miami.
f
Seattle includes a small number of passengers debarked at Portland during early 1945 and late 1946.
Source: Data compiled for statistical volume of this series from monthly report, Recapitulation of Passengers Debarked,
from the ports of embarkation to Chief of Transportation.

the month of December 1945 were soldiers who were entitled to sleeping-car
distributed as follows: 148 space under the forty-eight-hour rule had
149
Port Passengers to be moved in coaches.
Boston................................ 74,185
New Y o r k . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 261,778 The heavy repatriation traffic created
Hampton Roads . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106,835
problems for the Army other than those of
New O r l e a n s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4,542
Los Angeles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119,256 clearing troops from the ports. The large
San F r a n c i s c o . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 146,295 number of troop trains in operation, com-
Portland.............................. 22,298 bined with the rapid rate of demobiliza-
Seattle. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99,281 148
Monthly Rpt, PEs to OCT, Recap of Passengers
Since the Army had stressed the need Debarked; data compiled for statistical volume of this
for additional sleeping cars to handle the series, now in preparation. Figures for New York and
Hampton Roads include small numbers debarked
heavy influx of troops, its experience in from freighters at the cargo ports of Philadelphia and
securing sleeping cars in December 1945 is Baltimore, respectively. Boston debarkations were less
of interest. During that month the Army in December than in previous months and troop
requested the assignment of 10,846 sleepers movements through Boston were discontinued there-
after. Small numbers of troops had been debarked at
for troop movements of forty-eight hours Charleston, South Carolina, and Prince Rupert,
or longer, including domestic as well as British Columbia, earlier.
149
repatriation traffic. The sleepers actually Statistical Tabulation, Utilization of Sleeping
Cars, October 1945-March 1946, based on records
assigned to these movements fell 2,824 of Pass Br, Traf Contl Div, OCT HB TC Gen Demob
short of the requests. As a result, 91,359 Trans.
208 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

tion, made it difficult for the Chief of portation established special TRANSCON
Transportation to hold sufficient person- Centers at staging areas of the ports of
nel to provide these trains with competent embarkation at New York, Los Angeles,
commanders and crews. In order to speed San Francisco, and Seattle to receive,
up the return of these men to the ports process, and dispatch troops being for-
after they had delivered troops to the per- warded by air.153 The TRANSCON proj-
sonnel centers, special arrangements were ect, which was set up to move about 25,000
made for the immediate audit of their troops per month, continued through the
accounts and for their return to the ports following March and lifted a total of
by Army or commercial aircraft when 174,501 soldiers. The peak month was
150
necessary. Immediately after the Japa- January 1946, when 35,305 troops were
nese surrender the Army announced its transported.154
intention to increase the number of sepa- After port congestion on the Pacific
ration centers (components of the person- coast became acute, the Director of
nel centers) from twenty-two to twenty- Defense Transportation took steps to
seven, but this was not done immediately. augment the eastbound airlift. On 20
As a result, some of the separation centers November 1945, the ODT announced ar-
became congested during September and rangements under which the commercial
it was necessary to divert troop trains to airlines would make at least 70 percent
other centers thus increasing mileage and of the space on their regularly scheduled
delaying trains. To meet this situation 152 flights from Seattle, San Francisco, Los
temporary separation facilities44 of Angeles, and San Diego to the eastern sea-
them for AAF troops and the remainder board available for repatriated military
for AGF and ASF troopswere opened personnel. This undertaking was known
on 24 September, and later 4 additional as COM-AIR.155 In his effort to expand
separation centers were established. By the project beyond the facilities of the air-
November this problem had been over- lines, Mr. Johnson appealed to the Army;
come despite the unexpectedly heavy rate he found it ready to provide additional
of demobilization.151 150
ASF Cir 253, 3 Jul 45; ASF Cir 375, 4 Oct 45.
151
ASF press conf, 16 Aug 45, statement by Maj
Beginning early in the repatriation Gen Joseph N. Dalton; WD press release, 13 Sep 45,
period the railways received appreciable sub: Temporary Separation Points and Bases; Ltr, SW
to Rep James C. Auchincloss, 26 Oct 45, WDCSA
though not extensive aid from air trans- 370.01, Sec. VIII; Hist of Returning Troops Br, 6 Dec
port. In July 1945 arrangements were 45, in Mvmts Div Hist for Oct 45, OCT HB Mvmts
made for the use of military aircraft to Div Gen.
152
Memo, Mobilization Div ASF for TAG, 11 Aug
move repatriated soldiers east and west 45, sub: Mvmts of Pers under TRANSCON Project,
across the continent.152 The aircraft were and atchd Memo for Record, AGO 370.5 (11 Aug
assigned to commercial airlines, which 45).
153
TC Cir 101-3, 24 Aug 45, sub: Org and Opn of
operated them under contract. These so- TRANSCON Centers.
called TRANSCON services, which be- 154
Statistical Tabulation, Passengers Moved by Air
gan 27 August, were from the Newark Air Between East and West Coasts, based on monthly
troop records of Transport Economics Br, Traf Contl
Base in New Jersey, Mines Field and Mc- Div, OCT HB Topic Air Transport Gen.
Clellan Field in California, and Paime 155
WD CTB 53, 14 Dec 45, sub: Mvmt of Traf
Field in Washington. The Chief of Trans- Under COM-AIR Project.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 209

aircraft but unable to assign personnel "in tion in his effort to increase the airlift was
view of the necessity of releasing Army air written primarily for the record, General
and ground crews in accordance with the Wylie replied on behalf of the Chief of
156
general demobilization plans." COM- Transportation in like manner, presenting
AIR movements began on 3 December the broad aspects of the problem from the
1945 and continued into February 1946, Army angle. He pointed out that the
during which period a total of 23,156 armed forces had been under heavy pres-
Army and Navy personnel were trans- sure from the public, the press, and the
ported.157 Congress to speed up the return of troops
The Director of Defense Transportation from overseas. Excellent results in provid-
felt that neither the Army nor the com- ing water transportation had been accom-
mercial airlines had given adequate atten- plished with the aid of the War Shipping
tion to the development of transcontinen- Administration. The Chief of Transporta-
tal airlift to relieve the rail lines, and he tion repeatedly had inquired of the rail-
said so early in December in a letter to roads and the ODT whether they wanted
which he gave wide circulation. He had the inflow of troops retarded, but they had
argued for a total lift of 100,000 per expressed no such desire. The armed
month, but this figure was never ap- forces then had requested the assignment
proached. In the peak month (January of additional sleeping cars to the western
1946) TRANSCON and COM-AIR to- lines because the need for sleepers was
gether transported only 46,000 troops, and especially great; this request had not been
during the entire period of operation the granted, although additional day coaches
combined lift was less than 200,000. Nat- had been provided. The armed forces had
urally neither the Army nor the Air Trans- diverted ships from one port to another in
port Association of America could accept accordance with the desires of the rail-
a charge of non-co-operation; each had its roads, but that action had not greatly alle-
peculiar problems and explanations. In viated the difficulty. A proposal that troops
the light of the rail situation in December, from the Pacific destined for personnel
Mr. Johnson's chagrin at the limited re- centers in the eastern states be routed
sults of the air projects is understandable. through the Panama Canal to Atlantic
Evidently the pressure for a large airlift ports had been considered, but the pro-
was not applied early enough. General posal had not been found acceptable be-
discussion of the use of aircraft in moving cause it would have involved a wasteful
repatriated troops within the United
156
States began in the spring of 1945. It Memo, CofT for Mobilization Div ASF, 26 Nov
seems probable that if there had been a 45; Memo, CofT for CG ASF, 5 Dec 45, sub: COM-
AIR Lift; Ltr, SW to ODT, 5 Dec 45; all in OCT
realization at that time, or even in August, 584.1 COM-AIR Project.
that in a single month more than 800,000 157
Statistical Tabulation, Passengers Moved by Air
returning troops would be landed at U.S. Between East and West Coasts, cited n. 154.
158
Ltr, Johnson to ATC, OCT, BuPers, and Air
ports with serious congestion on the Pa- Transport Assn of America, 6 Dec 45, OCT HB
cific coast, arrangements for a heavier Wylie Troop Mvmt; Ltr, Air Transport Assn of
airlift could have been made.158 America to Johnson, 10 Dec 45; Ltr, Johnson to
ATAA, 26 Dec 45; last two in OCT HB Gross ODT;
Since Mr. Johnson had stated frankly Ltr, Johnson to CofT, 26 Dec 45, OCT 584.1 COM-
that his letter regarding lack of co-opera- AIR Project.
210 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

use of shipping and slower repatriation. thorough inquiry into the railway situ-
General Wylie reiterated the contention of ation as it affected repatriation and de-
the armed forces that more sleepers and mobilization. Despite the earlier com-
coaches should be withdrawn from regu- plaints and countercomplaints, the
lar service to enable the western railroads testimony given at the hearing on 21
to handle returning veterans properly, December displayed no sharp differences
notwithstanding the fact that this would of opinion between the armed forces and
mean a further cut in civilian travel dur- the representatives of the carriers. Mr.
ing the critical weeks of repatriation.159 Johnson, Director of Defense Transporta-
Replying to General Wylie's presenta- tion, Mr. Charles H. Buford of the
tion, Johnson stated that the carriers had Association of American Railroads, Rear
not requested that the inflow of troops be Adm. James F. Holloway of the Navy,
reduced and would not do so; he implied and General Wylie, speaking for the
that better regulation of the flow, not less Army Chief of Transportation, seemed in
traffic, should be the Army's contribution. agreement that all had been done that
He contested Wylie's statement that the could have been done to meet the extraor-
ODT and the railroads had been properly dinary situation. It was recognized that
informed regarding the peak loads to be peaks and valleys in the rate of arrivals at
handled during recent weeks. He asserted west coast ports were inevitable since
that the assignment of additional cars to "shipping can't be scheduled like trains."
the western lines would not solve the The distribution of troop arrivals among
problem of port congestion; the line-haul the ports had been carefully made in ac-
capacity of the seven single-tracked rail- cordance with the desires of the railroads.
roads that served the Pacific coast had The assignment of more cars from the
160
become the bottleneck. eastern and southern lines to the Pacific
During December the Senate Special coast would not have substantially helped
Committee Investigating the National the situation since the western lines al-
Defense program again took cognizance ready were handling the maximum traffic
of the transportation situation, both ocean that their track facilities and manpower
and rail. Its inquiry into shipping was would allow. The airlift had been helpful
directed particularly to the large number but had not moved the numbers that had
of cargo vessels then idle, some of them been hoped for. The relief afforded by the
laid up at U.S. ports and some of them use of buses had been limited because
held in the western Pacific under load only a few of the bus operators had facil-
since V-J Day. Consideration of troop ities and personnel to handle transcon-
transportation was incidental. The com- tinental traffic. There was some question
mittee apparently was satisfied with the whether greater use might not have been
statement of Capt. Granville Conway, made of the Canadian railway lines, but
Deputy War Shipping Administrator, that it was recognized that they also had been
no American troopships had been diverted 159
Ltr, Wylie to Johnson, 12 Dec 45, OCT HB
from military service to resume commer- Wylie Troop Mvmts.
160
cial operations and that shipping was not Ltr, Johnson to Wylie, 19 Dec 45, OCT HB
Wylie Troop Mvmts.
the bottleneck in demobilizing troops.161 161
Hearings cited n. 88, Pt. 32, December 12, 1945,
The committee made a much more pp. 16227-29.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 211

heavily burdened in handling Canadian manufacturing the beds; this strike had
traffic.162 just been settled.
When these hearings were held the
peak of repatriation traffic had been It is clear that some of the difficulties
reached and relief was in sight. In other encountered during the repatriation
words, the situation was expected to im- period stemmed from the facts that the
prove rather than get worse. This fact no peacetime capacity of the western rail-
doubt accounts for the equanimity with roads had been limited, that the expan-
which the situation was discussed by rep- sion of their facilities during the war had
resentatives of the armed forces, the ODT, been restricted by shortages of materials
and the transportation industry, in con- and manpower, and that after V-J Day
trast with their earlier disputations. these limitations could not be quickly
Some of the facts brought out in the overcome. As to other factors, one can
hearings are of interest. Because of the raise questions but cannot provide defin-
bunching of traffic, the number of troops itive answers. Should the Army have dis-
landed on the Pacific coast on some peak regarded the public demand for the
days in December (47,000-48,000) had speediest possible demobilization to the
been nearly three times the average daily extent that was necessary to effect better
arrivals forecast in September (17,000). co-ordination between water and rail
Although over a period in early Decem- movements? Could the peaks in the ar-
ber the railroads had moved a daily aver- rivals curve have been leveled off some-
age of about 25,000 troops of all services what without seriously delaying the
out of Pacific coast ports, it was not to be movements of vessels? Should the Army
expected that they could sustain this rate have made a greater effort to land troops
during winter weather when more cars at the ports nearest the personnel centers
would be in the shops and more delays for which they were destined in order to
would be encountered on the right of shorten the rail haul? Could the heavy
ways. A check of all trains from the Pacific movement of troops in the Pacific have
coast for the period 5-7 December dis- been started earlier and the exceptionally
closed that military personnel had utilized heavy arrivals in November and Decem-
89.1 percent of the total sleeping car space ber have thus been reduced? Could more
and 90.4 percent of all coach seats. On materials and manpower have been de-
20 December, the day before the repre- voted to building up the western railroads
sentatives of the armed forces and the car- during the war without deleterious effects
riers testified at the hearing, the Army had on the military effort? Could the ODT
about 70,000 returning troops in its west have reduced regular sleeper services fur-
coast staging areas and approximately ther without serious damage to the civil-
40,000 troops on ships in the ports, a total ian economy? Each of these questions has
of 110,000. On the same day the Navy many facets and about all that can now
had some 17,000 at its Pacific port stations be said with conviction is that future mili-
and none were detained on board ship. tary planners should give them full
Only about 200 of the special troop sleep- consideration.
ers ordered in May were in service in De- 162
Hearings cited n. 88, Pt. 32, December 21, 1945,
cember because of a strike in the plant pp. 16279-302.
212 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

Looking back at the repatriation period States entered World War II. The early
after a lapse of years, one may wonder measures to provide hospital facilities
why public reaction to the rate of repa- afloat were taken somewhat haltingly,
triation and demobilization should have partly because it was difficult to forecast
been so unreasoning, and why the delay the extent of the need and partly because of
of a few days at the debarkation ports differing opinions regarding the extent to
should have caused so much criticism. which hospital ships should be used. The
The entire operation had proceeded with procedures were evolved gradually as the
a rapidity that had surpassed the hopes of result of experience. There were extensive
163
most Army officers. Possibly these re- evacuation operations within the active
actions can be attributed in part to the theaters from the forward areas to the rear
War Department's early assurances that bases, but this discussion concerns pri-
it would carry out demobilization with the marily the removal of more than 500,000
utmost dispatch and to the inadequacy of patients from the theaters to the United
its subsequent efforts to keep the public States.164
informed regarding the results achieved
and the difficulties involved; yet it is The regulations pertaining to the
doubtful if any course of action would movement of patients were changed in
have forestalled the criticism. After sev- many respects, but the following distribu-
eral years of war strain the national tion of basic responsibilities was in effect
temper was taut and individual feelings virtually throughout the war: Hospital-
were sensitive. Many troops had been ization and evacuation for the Army were
overseas for long periods and had under- under the general direction of the Com-
gone hardship and deprivation. The aver- manding General, Army Service Forces,
age citizen did not see the problem in its and his headquarters included a unit to
larger context; he was aware only of the supervise these activities. The Surgeon
delayed return of the soldier in whom he General was directly responsible for the
was personally interested. Readiness to co-ordination and completion of evacua-
accuse the government of needless bun- tion plans; he controlled bed credits in the
gling is not an uncommon trait. These are general hospitals in the zone of interior
circumstances that the military author-
ities will always have to take into account.
163
In a lengthy statement issued to the press on 15
January 1946 designed primarily to apprise the nation
Evacuation of Patients of our continuing military commitments overseas,
From Oversea Theaters General Eisenhower, then Chief of Staff, stated that
approximately 5,000,000 members of the V-E Day
The wartime evacuation of sick and force in the zone of interior and overseas had been re-
turned to civilian life; the demobilization since V-J
wounded soldiers from oversea areas in- Day had exceeded the September estimate by about
volves problems quite different from those 1,665,000. Eisenhower said that, while the desire for
encountered in peacetime because of the quick demobilization was understandable, he had not
anticipated that "this emotional wave would have
volume of the traffic and the abnormal reached proportions of near-hysteria."
transportation conditions. Since the Army 164
For a month-to-month general review of evacua-
had not made adequate advance plans, tion, see appropriate sections of ASF MPR, Sec. 7,
Health. For a more detailed, discussion, see Smith, The
much had to be done in developing facil- Medical Department: Hospitalization and Evacuation, Zone
ities and procedures after the United of Interior, Chs. XIX-XXIV.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 213

and was the chief medical regulator for geon General.167 Col. John C. Fitzpatrick,
controlling the flow of patients from ports Medical Corps, who served first as med-
to the hospitals; he made sure that the ical liaison officer and then as medical
medical personnel, equipment, and sup- regulating officer, had his office in and
plies for the care of patients being trans- was virtually a part of the Movements
ported were adequate and made recom- Division, OCT. In June 1945 his staff
mendations regarding the number of included six officers and twenty-one civil-
hospital ships and hospital cars to be pro- ians.168
cured. The Chief of Transportation was As liaison officer Colonel Fitzpatrick
responsible for providing adequate ship- provided co-ordination between the Chief
ping and rail facilities for the transporta- of Transportation and The Surgeon Gen-
tion of patients and for scheduling and eral in matters relating to medical prac-
operating the ships; he was also respon- tices at the ports and on the vessels, the
sible for the care of patients at sea, for the suitability of shipping schedules to meet
debarkation of patients at U.S. ports, and evacuation requirements, and the ade-
for their transfer to hospital trains or am- quacy of medical personnel and supplies
bulances. Commanders of the service at the ports and on the ships. As medical
commands staffed and operated the hos- regulating officer he maintained records
pital cars and ambulances that were used of bed vacancies in medical installations
for the removal of patients from the ports where evacuated patients were to be
to hospitals. The Commanding General, treated, regulated the movement of pa-
Army Air Forces, was responsible for the tients from the ports to the respective
development of plans and the actual medical installations, and consulted with
evacuation of patients by air from the the Chief of Transportation in regard to
oversea theaters.165 appropriate transportation arrange-
Although the movement of patients by ments.169
water and rail was a responsibility of the The flow of patients from overseas was
Chief of Transportation, he required tech- governed by the War Department evacu-
nical advice and assistance from The Sur- 165
Memo, TAG for CGs AGF, AAF, et al., 18 Jun
geon General in order to perform that 42, sub: WD Hosp and Evac Policy, AG 704 (6-IT-
function properly. Close co-ordination be- 42); Pamphlet, Mil Hosp and Evac Opns, transmitted
with Memo, CG SOS for CGs of SvCs, PEs, et al., 15
tween the two offices was necessary on Sep 42, SPOPH 322.15, OCT HB PE Gen Evac of
many details pertaining to the headquar- Patients; Memo, TAG for CGs All Depts, Theaters,
ters organizations in Washington, the et al., 25 Jan 43, sub: Sea Evac of Patients, AG 370.04
(1-19-43); WD Cir 316, 6 Dec 43, sub: Hosp and Evac
ports of embarkation, the ships, and suit- of Pers; Memo, TAG for CGs of Forces in ZI and
able inland transportation. Although the Overseas, 8 Jan 44, sub: Procedure of Evac of Patients
Hospitalization and Evacuation Branch by Water and Air, AG 704.11 (3 Jun 44).
166
Hist Med Liaison Off, par. 1.8; 1st Ind, CofT to
of ASF headquarters served as a co-ordi- CG ASF, 10 May 43, OCT HB Farr Staybacks.
nating agency, in May 1943 The Surgeon 167
ASF Cir 147, 19 May 44, Sec. II. For a discus-
General assigned a liaison officer to the sion of the conditions that caused the establishment of
the medical regulating office, see Hist Med Liaison
Chief of Transportation in order to effect Off, pars. 6.1-6.92.
a closer working relationship.166 A year 168
Hist Rpt, Mvmts Div, 20 Jun 45, par. 19, OCT
later a medical regulating officer, who HB Mvmts Div Rpts.
169
See extract from SGO Manual and Organiza-
took over the functions of the medical tion Chart of the Medical Regulating Office in Hist
liaison officer, was designated by The Sur- Med Liaison Off, Preface and Incl 7.2.
214 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

U.S. ARMY HOSPITAL SHIP ST. MIHIEL

ation policy. The evacuation policy in to 120.171 Still later the policy was
effect determined which patients were to changed to 90 days. In the spring of 1945,
be treated in the theaters and which were in order to evacuate as many patients as
to be treated in the zone of interior. possible before hostilities ended and troop-
Broadly speaking, this policy was ex- ships were withdrawn from the transat-
pressed in terms of daysthat is, patients lantic service, the policy was fixed tem-
likely to be hospitalized for longer than a porarily at 60 days. In July 1945, with the
specified number of days were eligible for major part of the evacuation task com-
evacuation as soon as their condition pleted, the 120-day basis was restored. In
would permit. The number of days dif- recommending the last change General
fered according to conditions such as the Somervell pointed out that the Army at
hospital capacities in the respective thea- that time was "long on hospital space in
ters, the hospital space situation in the Europe and crowded in the United
zone of interior, and the ships available for States," and that westbound ship hospital
transporting patients. In August 1943 the space in the Atlantic had been greatly re-
War Department, after consulting the duced by the transfer of vessels to the
theater commanders, announced that its Pacific.172
policy of evacuation would be 180 days 170
for the European theater (except Ice- on Evac WD Memo W 40-19-43, 28 Aug 43, sub: Policy
of Sick and Wounded. For a general discus-
land), China, Burma, and India; and 120 sion, see remarks of Col Fitzpatrick at Conf of Port
days for all other oversea commands.170 Surgeons and Troop Mvmt Officers, Fort Hamilton,
The effect of changing circumstances N. Y., 12-14 Oct 43, pp. 72-74, in OCT HB PE Gen
Evac of Patients.
on the evacuation policy is illustrated by 171
Memo, CG ASF for TAG, 30 Sep 44, and atchd
developments in the ETO. In the fall of note for record; Memo, WD for CG ETO, 5 Oct 44;
1944 with battle casualties mounting and both in AG 704 (25 Aug 43)(2).
172
Memo, Somervell for Marshall, 18 Jul 45, sub:
ship hospital facilities greatly increased, Change in Evac Policy, OCT HB PE Gen Evac of
the number of days was reduced from 180 Patients.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 215

Since the great majority of patients the hospital facilities on troopships did not
were evacuated by water, the rate of measure up to the desires of The Surgeon
evacuation was largely dependent on the General or of the theater surgeons, al-
availability of ship hospital facilities. The though they were greatly improved dur-
Army's aim was to have enough ship hos- ing the war. In contrast, hospital ships
pital facilities to meet evacuation needs as could with reasonable assurance be con-
they arose, but this aim was not entirely sidered safe from enemy attack; they had
fulfilled. The periodical estimates of but one purpose and could be employed
future needs were affected by the fact that in the manner that would best serve that
U.S. forces were engaged in areas and in purpose. They also provided the best facil-
types of combat with which the Army had ities that the limitation of ship space and
had no previous experience, and in the the exigencies of war would permit. But
beginning the estimates proved to be con- hospital ships once registered under the
173
servative. In view of the acute shortage Hague Convention could not be used for
of troop lift in the early part of the war, any military purpose such as transporting
there was a natural reluctance to convert troops to and from the theaters. 174
troopships to hospital ships or to convert Army efforts to secure hospital ships
troop spaces on transports to hospital were blocked during the early months of
spaces to a greater extent than was abso- the war by uncertainty as to who should
lutely necessary. In addition, there were pay for and who should operate such ves-
differences of opinion as to how far evacu- sels. Although there was no unanimity
ation should be accomplished by hospital within the War Department on the sub-
ships protected under the Hague Conven- ject, a proposal that six hospital ships be
tion X of 1907 and how far by regular built was taken by G-4 as a basis for pre-
troopships. The time lost in deciding these liminary action. 175 In January 1942 the
shipping questions delayed the Army's Army requested $36,000,000 for the con-
preparations for meeting its evacuation struction of six hospital ships, but the
responsibilities. request was disallowed by the Bureau of
In view of the early controversy over the Budget on the ground that the Mari-
the use of troopships and hospital ships for time Commission should procure the ves-
evacuating patients, it is worth noting the sels from funds available to it.176 When
advantages and disadvantages that each the Army approached Rear Adm. Emory
presented. When troopships could be S. Land (Ret.), Chairman of the Mari-
used, the evacuation operation did not re- time Commission, he took the position
quire the sacrifice of a great amount of that such ships properly came under the
outbound troop lift. On the other hand, cognizance of the Navy. 177 His position
troopships were always subject to attack 173
Remarks by Col Fitzpatrick cited in n. 170.
by the enemy, a fact that created special 174
See Hist Med Liaison Off, par. 1.3; the Hague
problems in providing for the safety of pa- Convention X of 1907, Art. 4. The Convention is in-
cluded in AR 55-530, 30 Dec 43.
tients on board. The employment of 175
Memo, ACofS G-4 for TAG, 24 Jan 42, and
troopships was governed by the outbound note for record, G-4/29717-100.
176
traffic, with the result that evacuation Memo, ACofS G-4 for CofS USA, 8 Feb 42,
G-4/33006-4.
needs at some oversea bases could not be 177
Ltr, CofS USA to Land, 12 Feb 42, and reply,
promptly met by this means. Sometimes 24 Feb 42, both in G-4/33006-4.
216 THE TRANSPORTATION CORPS

was predicated on a provision in joint war Consideration of the subject by the


plans that in case of hostilities the Navy Joint Chiefs of Staff resulted in agreement
would operate all vessels required by the on two pointsa tentative doctrine on the
Army.178 However, the Army and the use of troopships and hospital ships for
Navy had informally set aside the provi- Army evacuation purposes, and the au-
sion immediately after Pearl Harbor be- thorization of three hospital ships for
cause of the Navy's inability to provide Army use. With a view to economy of
crews for the Army's transports. The shipping, the JCS decided that evacuation
Army, moreover, ascertained that the normally would be accomplished by using
Navy had no plans for operating hospital troopships returning from areas that were
179
ships under the Hague Convention. served more or less regularly by troop-
The Army therefore did not agree with ships. To provide for additional Army re-
Admiral Land's view, and several months quirements in the Pacific, where many
elapsed before any further action was small bases were involved, the JCS de-
taken. Finally, on 1 May 1942, the Secre- cided to request the Maritime Commis-
tary of War placed the situation before the sion to provide three vessels for conversion
Secretary of the Navy and proposed a to hospital ships to be registered under the
conference of representatives of the two Convention. These vessels were to be
services to resolve the problem. He pointed fitted as hospital ships in accordance with
out that the Army desired hospital ships Army specifications, employed under the
that were protected under the Hague direction of the Army, and provided with
Convention and that naval hospital ships medical complements by the Army; but
ordinarily were not eligible for such pro- they were to be converted under the
tection since they operated tactically with supervision of the Navy and manned and
the Fleet. operated by naval personnel.181
At the suggestion of the Secretary of the The JCS action provided only half the
Navy the question was referred to the number of hospital ships that the Army
Joint Staff Planners for study. From the originally had asked for, and the conver-
discussions by the Joint Staff Planners it sion of these three vessels occupied a much
was evident that the Navy considered the longer period than Army officers had an-
operation of hospital ships a naval respon- ticipated. Since the conversion of troop-
sibility; but being concerned primarily ships would have deprived the Army of
with the forward areas of the Pacific and sorely needed troop lift, it was decided to
having no assurance that the Japanese use cargo ship hulls (C-1B type) for the
would respect the markings on Conven- hospital ships, and this meant that the
tion hospital ships, the Navy intended to 178
Wardlow, op. cit., pp. 200-202.
rely on hospital ships operating with the 179
Ltr, C of Trans Br G-4 to WSA, 7 Mar 42, G-4/
Fleet and evacuation ships (APH's), 33006; Memo, ACofS G-4 for CofS, file copy undated,
which would carry troops and cargo out- sub: Hospital Ships, and atchd draft of Ltr, SW to
Adm Land, both in OPD ABC 370.05 (2-8-42),
bound and would accommodate about Sec. 1.
600 patients on the return voyage. Neither 180
JPS27/D, 6 May 42; Memo, ACofS OPD for
type of ship met the Army's desire for pro- CG SOS, 9 May 42, OPD ABC 370.05 (2-8-42); JPS
27/1, 16 May 42.
tected vessels for use in repatriating its sick 181
JCS 16th Mtg, 25 May 42; JPS 27/2/D, 26 May
and wounded.180 42; JPS 52/1, 29 Jun 42; JCS 22d Mtg, 30 Jun 42.
REDEPLOYMENT AND REPATRIATION 217

superstructure and all accommodations and more isolated oversea bases not served
and hospital fittings had to be newly de- regularly by troopships. The Chief of
182
signed and constructed. Commence- Transportation, while recognizing that
ment of the conversion work was consider- eventually such vessels would be required,
ably delayed by a misunderstanding as to was opposed to immediate action. He
which service would provide the specifica- contended that emphasis should be placed
tions for the machinery and the electrical on using all available troopships for mov-
equipment. The Navy expected the Army ing troops to the theaters rather than
to provide these specifications, while the withdrawing some of them from service
Army believed that it was responsible only for conversion, a step that would be nec-
for the specifications pertaining to hos- essary if early delivery of hospital ships
pital facilities and that since the Navy was to be obtained. He pointed out that in
would man and operate the vessels it any event the major part of the evacua-
would provide all other specifications.183 tion from the active theaters would have
The hulls were built and the conversion to be accomplished with troopships.
work was accomplished on the Pacific Finally, he argued that if the need for hos-
coast, where the shipbuilding and the ship pital ships should become urgent, troop-
repair yards were heavily committed, and, ships could then be converted very
as the Army learned in September 1943, quickly. Although the Commanding Gen-
the job was originally given a low priority. eral, Services of Supply, was inclined to
These factors, together with the Navy's follow The Surgeon General's recom-
usual insistence on the highest technical mendation that three additional hospital
standards, delayed the deliveries well be- ships be provided with the least possible
yond the time the Army had foreseen.184 delay, further deliberation by the Joint
The vessels, named Comfort, Mercy, and Chiefs of Staff resulted in a decision in
Hope, did not enter service until June, November 1942 to delay action and await
August, and September 1944, respec- developments.186
tively.185 In the spring of 1943 with the demand
These three Army-controlled, Navy- 182
Memo, CG SOS for VCNO, 14 Jul 42, OCT HB
operated hospital ships were earmarked Wylie Hosp Ships; Memo, CG SOS for VCNO, 9 Sep
for service in the Pacific, and when the 42, OCT 564 Hosp Ships; Memo, VCNO for
Allies decided in July 1942 to invade BUSHIPS and BUPERS, 12 Sep 42, OCT HB Gross
North Africa in the fall of that year the Hosp Ships.
183
Memo, VCNO for CofS USA, 18 Dec 42;
question of additio