Number 8

                              A Brief History Of
                        THE MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT
                        PARRIS ISLAND, SOUTH CAROLINA
                                 1891 - 1962

                        HISTORICAL BRANCH, G-3 DIVISION
                        HEADQUARTERS, U. S. MARINE CORPS
                               WASHINGTON, D. C.

                                 Revised 1962

                            DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY
                             WASHINGTON 25, D. C. 

                       REVIEWED AND APPROVED 28 JUL 1962


                               R. E. CUSHMAN, JR.
                       Major General, U. S. Marine Corps
                         Assistant Chief of Staff, G-3

                 A Brief History of Marine Corps Recruit Depot,
                         Parris Island, South Carolina

                               TABLE OF CONTENTS

                                                           Original    Online
                                                           Page        Page

A Brief History of Marine Corps Recruit Depot,                1           6
 Parris Island, South Carolina
Notes                                                        20          25
Commanders of Marine Corps Activities at                     26          31
 Parris Island, South Carolina, 1981-1956

                        PARRIS ISLAND, SOUTH CAROLINA


                              Elmore A. Champie

     The recorded history of what is now Parris Island dates from the 
sixteenth century, during which it figured in the colonial rivalry of Spain 
and France in the New World.  The French made the earliest effort to occupy 
any portion of what is now South Carolina when the Huguenot Jean Ribaut, in 
mid-1562, left some 28 men to hold a fort on Parris Island while he returned 
to France for reinforcements and supplies. Ribaut's plans miscarried, however, 
and the men at Charlesfort, as he had named the stronghold on Parris Island in 
honor of his king, Charles IX, became discouraged.  By the winter of 1562-63 
they decided to attempt the voyage back to France in a vessel of their own 
construction.  They succeeded in crossing the Atlantic and were rescued off 
the coast of England, but, only after terrible sufferings and the sacrifice of 
one of their number to save the others from starvation, did they eventually 
reached their homeland.<1>

     In 1566, to prevent further trespass by the French, the Spaniards built 
Fort San Felipe on the island.  The Indians drove them out in 1576 and burned 
the fort, but the Spaniards returned in 1577 and rebuilt near the same place, 
calling the new structure Fort San Marcos.  When Sir Francis Drake burned St. 
Augustine in 1586, the Spaniards were forced to abandon Fort San Marcos.<2>

     It thus fell to the English to make the first permanent settlement in 
what was to become South Carolina.<3>  Parris Island, though not the site of 
this first English settlement, is part of the present Beaufort County of South 
Carolina, and thus was drawn into the stream of British colonial and United 
States history.

     The Marine Corps had its first contact with Parris Island slightly less 
than four hundred years after Jean Ribaut sailed into the harbor that he named 
Port Royal, the name by which the location of their installations on Parris 
Island was to be officially known by the Navy and Marine Corps until World War 
I.  In the first year of the Civil War, Captain Samuel F. Du Pont (commanding 
Atlantic Blockading Squadron) seized Port Royal, and it was used as an 
important base for the Union Navy throughout the war.  The role of the Marines 
was that of duty as members of detachments aboard various ships.  After the 
war, the importance of the base decreased.  Until 1877, it was the rendezvous 
for the ironclad fleet, and from 1877 to 1879, the NEW HAMPSHIRE was based 
there as a training ship for apprentices.  After 1879, the NEW HAMPSHIRE was 
converted into a stores and receiving ship, and the only other permanent 
vessel at the station was the PAWNEE, used for storing coal.<4> 


     The Navy Department now decided to replace these vessels with shore 
installations.  An Act of Congress, approved 7 August 1882, authorized the 
establishment and construction of a coaling dock and naval storehouse at Port 
Royal Harbor, South Carolina, and appropriated $20,000 for that purpose.  A 
board of naval officers appointed by the Secretary of the Navy selected Parris 
Island as the site.  The first deed, obtained from J. E. Jouett and dated 22 
December 1883, conveyed to the United States for $5,000 the title to 37 acres.  
The new installation was to be called the United States Naval Station, Port 
Royal, South Carolina.<5>

     By 1891, construction was in progress on a dry dock at this station, 
employing a large number of laborers, "many of them very vicious characters 
from the cities in the vicinity."<6>  To protect the interests of the 
Government in these circumstances, a Marine guard of one sergeant, two 
corporals, and ten privates was assigned to Port Royal, with Sergeant Richard 
Donovan in charge.  It was thus that the first Marine post came into being, on 
26 June 1891, on the island destined to become one of the most important of 
all Marine Corps bases.  Since no housing was available, the Marine guard 
lived in tents until the following October.  Inclement weather in the first 
part of that month, after causing a number of cases of illness among the 
Marines, forced attention to be given to better shelter for them.  The medical 
officer recommended that they be properly housed, whereupon the commandant of 
the station transferred them to a large room in the coal shed.  It was not 
until November 1893 that the Marines, now numbering 20, were able to move into 
barracks built for their use.<7>

     The first officer assigned to command the detachment at Port Royal was 
First Lieutenant Clarence L. A. Ingate, USMC, who arrived on 1 May 1895.  On 
15 September 1896, when his successor, First Lieutenant Henry C. Haines, USMC, 
took command, the detachment became the Marine Barracks, U. S. Naval Station, 
Port Royal, South Carolina.<8>

     The next important change took place on 1 January 1909, when, with the 
assumption of command by Lieutenant Colonel Eli K. Cole, the designation 
Marine Barracks became Marine Officers' School, U. S. Naval Station, Port 
Royal, South Carolina.  Organized for the purpose of indoctrinating newly 
commissioned officers, the school graduated 27 officers the following December 
and 16 more in December 1910.<9>

     An effort to set up a recruit depot at Port Royal in November 1910 had to 
be suspended because of the need for men for an expeditionary force that was 
organized at that time; but, on 1 June 1911, the recruit depot began 
operations again, on a three-company basis as a subordinate activity of the 
Marine Officers' School.<10>


     About this time the Navy Department decided to use its property at Port 
Royal for a disciplinary installation.  On 28 August 1911, by General Order 
No. 122, it changed the designation of the U. S. Naval Station, Port Royal, to 
the U. S. Naval Disciplinary Barracks, Port Royal, South Carolina.  Two days 
later the Marine Corps turned over its buildings there to the Navy and 
transferred its activities.  The Marine Officers' School, including two 
companies of the recruit depot, went to Norfolk; the remaining company of 
recruits continued its training at Charleston, where a one-company recruit 
depot was operated from this time until June 1912.<11>

     Although Marines were assigned to duty at the naval disciplinary barracks 
at Port Royal, that organization functioned as an installation immediately 
under the Navy, as distinguished from the Marine Corps; it was not included in 
the Marine Corps budget.<12>  Thus there was no Marine Corps installation at 
Port Royal from 30 August 1911 until October 1915.

     By the latter date the decrease in the number of naval prisoners had 
greatly reduced the need for the disciplinary barracks at Port Royal, and 
arrangements were made for the Navy to transfer all its property there to the 
Marine Corps for use as a recruit depot.  The recruit depot had been operating 
at the Marine Barracks, U. S. Navy Yard, Norfolk, Virginia, since the end of 
August 1911.  In October 1915, the depot was moved from the Marine Officers' 
School at Norfolk to Port Royal, where, on the 25th, it was established as 
Marine Barracks, Port Royal, South Carolina.  Its commanding officer, Captain 
Elias R. Beadle, had preceded it by four days.  On 28 October the actual 
transfer of land and buildings from the Navy to the Marine Corps took place, 
and as of 1 November 1915, for administrative purposes, the U. S. Naval 
Disciplinary Barracks were attached to Headquarters Detachment, Marine 
Barracks, Port Royal, South Carolina.<13>  From this time forward, the 
training of Marine recruits was to be the principal mission of this station.

     With the entry of the United States into World War I, an enormous 
expansion of the installation at Port Royal became necessary.  In the course 
of the war this expansion took place not only in the number of men trained, 
but also in the variety of instruction given them, and the physical plant in 
which these operations were conducted was likewise greatly enlarged.

     Since an early consequence of the rapid growth due to the war was a 
change in the designation of the installation, the discussion of the other 
changes will be facilitated if we note this change of designation first.  The 
precipitating cause was the swollen volume of mail for the station, as is 
clearly implied in the directive ordering the change.  This


was Marine Corps Order No. 27, dated 22 June 1917, which reads as follows: "At 
the request of the Postmaster General and in order to avoid delay in the 
delivery of mail, it is directed that the official designation of the Marine 
Corps post at Port Royal, S. C., be changed from Marine Barracks, "Port 
Royal", S. C., to Marine Barracks, "Paris Island", S. C. Mail intended for 
this post will be addressed accordingly." The spelling of "Paris" with one "r" 
was the official version until the spelling with two "r's" was directed by 
Marine Corps Order No. 32, dated 3 May 1919.  The latter was issued on the 
recommendation of Brigadier General Joseph H. Pendleton, then in command of 
the post, who enclosed with his letter a copy of Bulletins of the Historical 
Commission of South Carolina, No. 5, to support his contention that "the 
proper historical manner of spelling the name of this Island" was with two 
"r's."<14>  The current spelling will be used in the discussion that follows.

     On 6 April 1917, there were 835 men in training at Parris Island.  This 
rose during the war to a peak of 13,286 men in training at one time but had 
receded to 4,104 on the day of the armistice.  For a short time at the 
beginning of the war recruits were trained at Philadelphia and Norfolk while 
the two regular recruit depots, Parris Island and Mare Island (California) 
were being enlarged.  But the latter two trained the great bulk of the Marines 
in World War I, and of the 58,103 wartime recruits handled by Parris Island 
and Mare Island together, Parris Island trained 46,202.<15>  Among these, 
incidentally, was Edwin Denby, the future Secretary of the Navy.

     The course of instruction lasted eight weeks.  The first three weeks were 
devoted to instruction and practice in such activities as close-order drills, 
physical exercise, swimming, bayonet fighting, personal combat, wall-scaling, 
rope-climbing, etc.  During the fourth and fifth weeks the recruits perfected 
their drills, learned something of boxing and wrestling, and were taught 
interior-guard duties and exercised in extended order.  The last three weeks 
were spent on the rifle range.<16>

     Not only was basic training for recruits provided at Parris Island, but 
subsequent instruction in a variety of skills required by the Marine Corps in 
modern warfare was also given.  The Noncommissioned Officers' School graduated 
2,144 men between the declaration of war and the armistice.  During the same 
period the Field Musics' School graduated 493 men; the Radio School, 143; the 
Signal School, 232; the Band School, 247; the Clerical School, 236; the Pay 
School, 78; and the Cooks' and Bakers' School, 150.<17>


     The area of the Marine reservation on Parris Island just before the war 
was 78 acres, of which 58 acres were firm ground and the remainder was marshy 
lowland.<18>  On 7 August 1918, pursuant to an Act of Congress approved 1 July 
1918, a Presidential proclamation ordered possession to be taken of all the 
island not already owned by the United States.  The settlement of claims for 
reimbursement for this land was to be a long-drawn-out process after the war.  
The following official description of the island is quoted from the 
Presidential proclamation:

     All that certain tract of land, situate, lying and being in Beaufort 
County, State of South Carolina, known as "Parris Island or Paris Island", 
being all that tract of land shown on U.S.C. and G. S. chart no. 571, lying 
south of Archer's Creek as said creek is shown on said chart, and being 
bounded on the east by waters of the Beaufort River and on the south and west 
by waters of Port Royal Sound and Broad River, containing in all 6,000 acres, 
more or less, of fast land and marsh land....<19>

     The Bureau of Yards and Docks describes the 6,000 acres as consisting of 
"3,000 acres high and 3,000 acres marsh."<20>

     The building program began on the smaller area.  On 21 April 1917, the 
Bureau of Yards and Docks awarded a contract for the construction of 
approximately 233 temporary buildings which were completed in March 1918; 
these structures provided accommodations for 5,000 men, but the accommodations 
for 2,000 of the men consisted of a tent camp.  During the latter half of 
1918, an additional 288 buildings were constructed, affording quarters for 
4,100 men, officers' quarters, piers, and other necessary structures.<21>

     The water supply for the island posed a serious problem for some time 
because of the high salt content of water from wells sunk in the island 
itself.  This salt water was distributed for such purposes as bathing, 
washing, flushing, and fire protection; but water for drinking and cooking had 
to be supplied by barge, and the supply hardly kept pace with the mushrooming 
recruit population.  Eventually, an adequate supply of fresh water was 
obtained by the installation of a submerged pipe line between Parris Island 
and Port Royal Island, which lies on the other side of Archer's Creek, the 
northern boundary of Parris Island.<22>

     Morale services for the Marines on Parris Island during the war were 
provided chiefly by the YMCA and the Knights of Columbus, under the 
co-ordinating supervision of the Presidential Commission on Training Camp 
Activities for the Navy,


headed by Raymond B. Fosdick.  The YMCA opened its first hut on Parris Island 
about 10 July 1917, and several others shortly afterward.  Its program 
functioned through five departments: (1) a religious department, which held 22 
services a week during the war; (2) an educational department, which gave 
special instruction in the French language to men going overseas and provided 
other instruction also; (3) a social department, which furnished some kind of 
entertainment ever night, with many entertainers imported for this purpose; 
(4) a physical department, which promoted sports, supplied athletic equipment, 
and gave instruction in swimming; and (5) a publicity department, which 
published "The Marine" and distributed it free to all Marines on the station.

     The Knights of Columbus formally opened a recreation building at Parris 
Island in April 1918, supplementing the activities of the YMCA.  This building 
was supplied with stationery, books, magazines, newspapers, and similar items 
for the convenience and entertainment of the men.  The Knights of Columbus 
personnel staged shows, often using local Marine Corps talent, organized and 
provided facilities for sports of various kinds, furnished phonographs and 
records to sick bays, exhibited movies, and distributed cigarettes, candy, and 
stationery to men in hospitals and to personnel leaving for duty elsewhere.

     Officers had their own club.<23>

     During the war, the memory of Jean Ribaut and Charlesfort was revived.  
Colonel John Millis, Corps of Engineers, U. S. Army, happening to be stationed 
near-by and, being a student of local history, identified the remains of an 
old parapet and moat on Parris Island as the site of Charlesfort.  After the 
war, Brigadier General Eli K. Cole, while commanding the post, had the site 
thoroughly investigated under the direction of Major George H. Osterhout, Jr., 
USMC, another officer interested in local history.  Excavations disclosed the 
butt ends of cedar posts preserved in the sand several feet below the earth's 
surface, marking the outline of a stockade; bits of pottery, old hand-wrought 
spikes, an old cannonball, and other artifacts provided additional evidence.  
Information contained in a narrative left by one of the members of Rabaut's 
expedition and a map drawn by another convinced Major Osterhout and others 
interested that the identification as Charlesfort was correct.  Congress 
subsequently appropriated $10,000 for a suitable monument, and it was unveiled 
on Parris Island, with appropriate ceremonies, on 27 March 1926.  The monument 
as erected in 1926 was a replica of the stone shaft set up in 1562 by Ribaut 
on an island across Broad River from Parris Island to mark the surrounding 
territory as a possession of the King of France.<24>


     Later, certain sixteenth-century documents found in the Spanish archives 
in Seville raised doubt about the validity of the identification of 
Charlesfort.  The contents of these documents caused some persons to argue, 
not without plausibility, that Major Osterhout's excavations had uncovered not 
Charlesfort, but one or both of the Spanish forts, San Felipe and San Marcos.  
The evidence of construction more substantial than seemed likely under the 
circumstances attending the brief sojourn of Ribaut or of the men he left 
behind seemed to support this view.<25>  This point is still not settled among 
students of the subject, but the fact and importance of Charlesfort as a 
colonizing effort in the area are not disputed.

     Between the two world wars, recruit training at Parris Island continued 
along the lines described for World War I. It varied in length, however, from 
as long as 12 weeks to as short as 24 days, and there were certain 

     From 1922 to 1928, after the station had thoroughly settled down to 
peacetime routine, the longer period prevailed, divided into three phases of 
about four weeks each.  The first phase was devoted to preliminary and basic 
military instruction and was conducted in what was called the East Wing, from 
which the recruits hiked each day to the rifle range for marksmanship 
practice.  They returned to the West Wing after completing their firing for 
the day, but the noon meal was prepared by field kitchen at the range. The 
third, and final, phase was given over to intensive instruction in close-and 
extended-order drill, bayonet instruction, wall-scalling, rope-climbing, and 
similar activities.

     In 1928 the period of the training was reduced to seven weeks, divided 
into two phases.  The first phase, lasting three weeks, included the basic 
instruction necessary to convert civilians into soldiers, plus an innovation.  
This was an interview of each recruit by a selection clerk, who recorded the 
recruit's qualifications of education and experience. In embryo form, this 
procedure anticipated the specialty classification which was later to become 
indispensable as the complexity of paperwork increased and the material of war 
became even more technical and complicated.  The four-week second phase was 
spent on the rifle range.<26>

     In 1929, repercussions from the stock-market crash and the succeeding 
depression were felt on the recruit training program at Parris Island.  The 
resulting emphasis on extreme economy in all government operations caused the 
deactivation of the Receiving Barracks, the closing of the East Wing and the 
quarters at the rifle range, and the shutting down of


three of four power plants.  Recruits were now received at and handled from 
the Main Station.  During the rifle-range phase of their training, they were 
trucked out to the range in the morning, given the noon meal there, and 
trucked back to the Main Station in the evening or each day.<27>

     In the mid-1930's, training activity had sunk to a low ebb.  Although six 
captains were authorized as training officers, one first lieutenant was able 
to do the work involved. About 300 recruits arrived each month; each week, one 
or two platoons of 48 to 52 men were formed.  There were no company or 
battalion organizations.<28>

     An innovation introduced at this time was the appointment of recruit 
lance corporals.  These men, who were recommended for their payless promotions 
by their instructors, wore their chevrons on only one sleeve and had authority 
over only recruits junior to them.  The possibility of winning such a 
promotion was designed to provide incentive to excel and to promote a spirit 
of competition.<29>

     By this time, an independent Rifle-Range Detachment had ceased to exist, 
its personnel having been transferred to the Recruit Depot Detachment in 1934.  
Under this arrangement, recruit instructors were also rifle coaches at the 
range.  However, despite the fact that operations were being conducted with 
reduced personnel, certain innovations in rifle-range instruction were 
introduced in this period.  The recruits began familiarization firing with the 
automatic rifle, machine gun, and Thompson submachine gun, and they witnessed 
demonstration firing of the trench mortar.<30>

     An increase of 5,000 men in the strength of the Marine Corps was 
authorized for 1938.  The resulting flow of recruits into Parris Island 
strained the existing housing facilities, which were abnormally limited 
because the wooden buildings were in process of being replaced by brick 
barracks and a number of the wooden structures had been demolished.  The 
reopening of the East Wing, which had been closed for nine years, did not 
retrieve the situation.  Since the East Wing would hold only six platoons, it 
was necessary to pitch tents on the parade ground to accommodate the overflow. 

     It was at this time that the training period was reduced to 24 days to 
ease the pressure on the crowded housing facilities.  The schedule called for 
five days in the East Wing, 12 at the rifle range, and seven additional days 
at the East Wing.<32>

     In the two years preceding the Pearl Harbor attack, great expansion took 
place at Parris Island.  Much new housing was constructed, the rifle-range 
facilities were enlarged, and


the recruits undergoing training were numerous enough to form tour battalions 
during most of the period.  In addition, there were various other 
organizations present.  These included the 2d Defense Battalion and the 1st 
and 11th Marine Regiments, Fleet Marine Force, all of which were undergoing 
training on the island.<33>

     The more important administrative changes that took place between the 
wars should be noted before we consider World War II.  On 1 January 1927, the 
Headquarters Detachment, Main Station, Marine Barracks, was changed to 
Headquarters Company, Recruit Depot, Marine Barracks.  The last named, in 
turn, was redesignated, on 1 June 1932, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 
Post Troops, Marine Barracks, while at the same time Headquarters Detachment, 
Recruit Depot, Marine Barracks, was organized.  This last became Recruit Depot 
Detachment, Marine Barracks, on 1 December 1934, and on 13 August 1940 was 
redesignated Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Recruit Depot, Marine 
Barracks.  On 1 June 1932, the Receiving-Barracks Detachment and the 
Rifle-Range Detachment were disbanded. The latter was organized again on 1 
December 1932, but on 30 November 1934 was once more abolished, with all its 
personnel being transferred to the Recruit Depot Detachment, Marine Barracks.  
Its functions continued to be assigned to the last-mentioned organization 
through the latter's redesignation as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 
Recruit Depot, Marine Barracks, on 13 August 1940.  On the day after the 
United States entered World War II, the Rifle-Range Detachment, Marine 
Barracks, was organized, with a status co-ordinate with that of the Recruit 
Depot, Marine Barracks.<34>

     On the morning of 7 December 1941, the Japanese launched their carefully 
planned attack upon Pearl Harbor.  Eager to avenge this outrage, thousands of 
young men flocked to Marine recruiting stations throughout the United States.  
In the month of December, 10,224 men enlisted in the Corps; in January, 22,686 
were accepted, and in February, 12,037.<35>  This was a tremendous burden to 
be shouldered by a military organization which in November had accepted a mere 
1,978 recruits. Meanwhile, on 16 December, President Franklin D. Roosevelt had 
increased the authorized strength of the Marine Corps from 75,000 to 
104,000.<36>  The molding of these thousands of recruits into well trained 
Marines was a task which would require the most efficient use of training time 
and facilities.

     Reduced to the level of the individual recruit depot, the mobilization 
plan meant that both Parris Island and San Diego must train some 6,800 men 
each month from December 1941 through February 1942.  Prior to the outbreak of 
war, each depot had trained an average of 1,600 per month.<37>


     Among the more difficult problems facing the Marine Recruit Depot, Parris 
Island, was that of housing this horde of incoming personnel.  Through the 
cooperation of the Works Progress Administration of South Carolina, 100 
workers were dispatched to Parris Island to begin the construction of 
additional barracks; and early in 1942, some 430 prefabricated buildings were 
assembled.  Of these, 58 PB huts and 240 Quonset huts were located at the 
Recruit Depot; while 42 PB huts and 90 Quonset huts sprung up at the rifle 
range.  Each PB hut had a capacity of 64 men; each Quonset hut, 16 men.<38> 
Along with the expansion of Depot facilities, the number of recruit battalions 
was increased from 4 to 12.<39>

     Although the expedient of prefabricated buildings eased the housing 
problem, the Recruit Depot still faced a shortage of personnel among the 
training staffs.  Throughout the course of the war, Parris Island was plagued 
by a persistant lack of competent drill instructors; at times, it became 
difficult to assign even one experienced instructor to each recruit platoon. 
During the hectic first few months of mobilization, it was not uncommon to 
transfer assistant drill instructors from platoons already in training to take 
charge of new units.<40>  The only solution to this difficulty was the 
reduction of the number of recruits in each training cycle, a feat which could 
be accomplished only by shortening the cycle itself.

     Realizing that the rapid growth of the Marine Corps would place a heavy 
burden upon training staffs, the Commandant had authorized a training cycle of 
six weeks.  By the end of December 1941, however, it had become apparent that 
a further reduction would be necessary; consequently, a five week training 
cycle was adopted effective 1 January 1942.<41>

     In spite of this reform in the training program, Parris Island continued 
to stagger under an overwhelming work load. Because of the greater number of 
enlistments from the eastern states than had been predicted, the depot was 
swamped by an unexpectedly huge wave of recruits.  Gradually, some of the 
recruits were diverted to San Diego; and, beginning 24 January, 500 recruits 
were sent each week to Quantico for rifle range instruction.  Fortunately, the 
construction of additional range facilities as well as the sending of recruits 
to San Diego made possible the early abandonment of Quantico as a 
supplementary range.  By 15 February, Parris Island again was able to carry on 
all phases of recruit training.<42>

     While Parris Island suffered the throes of expansion, enlistments began 
to show a marked decline.  The Marine Corps, therefore, was able to return, on 
15 February 1942, to a six week training cycle and, on 1 March, to adopt a 
program seven weeks in duration.<43>


     For a time, relatively few recruits reached Parris Island; but their 
number slowly swelled until the summer of 1942, when approximately 1,000 men 
crowded the depot's rifle range each week.  In order to avoid a reduction in 
the training cycle, many recruits were transferred to New River after their 
fourth week of training.<44>

     On 5 December 1942, President Roosevelt by executive order halted the 
voluntary enlistment of individuals subject to the draft, thus forcing the 
Marine Corps to meet its personnel requirements through the Selective Service.  
Since the President's decision forced the Corps to modify its traditionally 
high physical and mental standards, certain changes in recruit training were 
found necessary.  Foremost among these innovations was the establishment of an 
elementary school for men lacking formal education but possession of a certain 
level of mental ability.  In from three to six weeks of intensive instruction, 
the staff attempted to give each student the equivalent of a sixth grade 
education.<45>  The school at Parris Island processed about 1,000 men, some 70 
per cent of whom were graduated.<46>

     Also, there was a certain percentage of the inductees who suffered some 
physical or psychological handicap.  Such individuals were placed in one of 
the casual Platoons; the "A" Platoon for men slow to learn, and the "B" 
composed of those with minor physical defects.  Both platoons adhered as 
closely as possible to the regular training cycle.<47>

     As the war progressed, certain deficiencies in Marine Corps training 
became apparent.  To remedy these weaknesses, the Commandant called upon the 
commanding generals at Parris Island and at San Diego to submit their 
recommendations for a revised recruit training cycle.  In keeping with the 
suggestions received from both Depots, the Commandant tentatively decided to 
adopt a 12 week training cycle, effective on 1 February 1944.<48>  Later, 
however, it was proposed to extend the cycle to 16 weeks, with 8 weeks of 
basic training and 8 of basic field training.<49>  On 1 March 1944, this 
latter program went into effect.<50>

     Along with the new cycle came a strict training schedule.<51>  Formerly, 
the Commandant had allowed the commanding generals of the two depots as much 
latitude as possible in determining the amount of time to be devoted to each 
subject: Parris Island, for example, had proposed 147 1/2 hours of rifle range 
instruction, but San Diego had scheduled only 112 hours.<52>  Both the eight 
week training cycle and the unified schedule remained in force throughout the 
war.  The inclusion, in July 1944, of an additional 36 hours of weapons 
training in the cycle was the only other change.<53>


     The sudden collapse of the Japanese Empire in August 1945 caused another 
wave of drastic changes at Parris Island.  Along with the anticipated 
reduction in strength, the depot was forced to assume the extra task of aiding 
in the rapid discharge of Marine combat veterans.  The almost unanimous desire 
to "bring the boys home" led to the establishment at Parris Island of a 
Separation Company which functioned from 16 October to 9 November.<54>

     Nor were the expected reductions in strength slow in coming.  On 1 
September 1945, Parris Island could boast of the following organizations:

     Post Troops:
        Post Headquarters Company
        Military Police Company
        Service Company
        Motor Transport Company
         (Maintenance Company)<55>

        Women's Reserve Battalion
        Rifle-Range Detachment
        Post Medical Detachment
        U.S. Naval Hospital
        Marine Corps Air Station
        Recruit Depot
         (including six recruit battalions)<56>

Within a year, however, Post Headquarters Company had shrunk to only two 
Companies: Post Headquarters Company and the Service Company.  In March 1946, 
the other companies of Post Troops had become detachments of Post Headquarters 
Company.<57>  The Women's Reserve personnel, after having been reduced to 
detachment size in March 1946 and attached to Post Headquarters Company until 
15 May, had departed.<58>  Furthermore, two of the recruit training battalions 
had been abolished in December 1945.<59>

     Not all the organizational changes had been contractions, however.  On 1 
July, the Schools Detachment had been set up on a separate administrative 
basis from Post Troops,<60> and on 12 July, the Dental Detachment had been 
separated from the Post Medical Detachment.<61>

     Now, in September 1946, it was decided at Headquarters Marine Corps to 
reorganize the post at Parris Island in the interests of greater efficiency 
and economy of personnel and to give it a designation that would reflect its 
primary mission.  At the direction of the Commandant, the Commanding General 
at Parris Island prepared plans and tables of organization to carry out the 
change, and after a preparatory


transitional period, the approved reorganization officially went into 
effect.<62>  On 1 December 1946, the Marine Barracks, Parris Island, became 
the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island.<63>

     Under the new arrangement the organization of the post was as follows:

     I.  Headquarters and Service Battalion
        (formerly Post Troops)

        A.  Headquarters Company
         B.  Service Company
         C.  Guard Company (newly formed)
         D.  Casual Company (transferred from Recruit Depot)
         E.  Dental Detachment
         F.  Medical Detachment

    II.  Instruction Battalion
         (formerly Schools Detachment)

         A.  Field Music School
         B.  Band School
         C.  Drill Instructors' School
         D.  Personnel Administration School
         E.  Physical Training Instructors' Section
         F.  Training-Aids Section

   III.  Weapons Training Battalion
         (formerly Rifle-Range Detachment)

    IV.  1st, 2d, and 3d Recruit Training Battalions<64>

The three battalions had four companies each, the companies being training 
units, while all administration was accomplished at the battalion level.<65>

     Under this scheme of organization, which obtained until April 1956, the 
number of recruit training battalions varied with the need.  In 1947, the 3d 
Battalion was deactivated but an unusual influx of recruits about the middle 
of 1948 caused it to be reactivated on 1 August of that year.  This need for 
it was temporary, however, and it was again deactivated on 8 January 1949.<66>

     Very shortly afterward, the 3d Recruit Battalion acquired a unique status 
that was to last for several years: on 23 February 1949, it was reactivated as 
the organization for training non-veteran women Marines, who began to be 
accepted into


the regular Marine Corps in January.  The battalion was to be operated by 5 
women Marine officers, 15 enlisted women Marines, and 15 male enlisted Marines 
who acted as drill instructors and guards.<67>

     This was the situation when hostilities broke out in Korea on 25 June 
1950.  There were two recruit training battalions in operation for male 
Marines, and one for women Marines.  The number of recruits on the station for 
that year had fluctuated in the vicinity of 2,000; on the day of the Korean 
attack it was 1,836.  Not much change occurred after the fighting began in the 
Far East until the third week of July, but then, there was a rapid increase in 
the number of men reporting for basic training.<68>

     There were several factors contributing to this increase. Marine 
enlistment quotas were now unlimited, and large numbers of young men began 
volunteering to fight in Korea.<69>  An added inducement for enlistment in the 
regular Marine Corps was the reduction of the enlistment period from four to 
three years.  If a man did not want to commit himself to a specified term, he 
was now permitted to enlist in the Reserve and volunteer on an individual 
basis for an indefinite period of active duty - a period "in excess of 30 
days," as his orders were phrased.<70>  Parris Island also began now to get 
reservists who had been called to active duty with their units.  Organized 
Reserve units that were activated for the Korean emergency had orginally been 
ordered to Camp Pendleton or Camp Lejeune.  From the latter post, 333 
reservists were transferred to Parris Island on 10 August 1950 for training, 
and the prospect was that the Island would handle more than 1,200 men in this 
category during the next few months.<71>  By 25 September, the number of men 
in basic training there had swollen to 8,185, <72> and the 4th, 5th, and 6th 
Recruit Training Battalions had been reactivated.<73>

     The expansion of training operations soon began to out-run the supply of 
experienced DI's.  In the period between the reorganization of the post as the 
Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, and the start of the Korean 
conflict, the Drill Instructors' School had been discontinued.  To meet the 
situation in the fall of 1950, another school for DI's was set up in October 
in the 6th Recruit Training Battalion, to be attended by personnel appointed 
to permanent drill-instructor duty in any of the male recruit battalions.  The 
course in this school, consisting mainly of briefings by veteran drill 
instructors on the handling of recruits, lasted two weeks.<74>


     The role for which this school prepared drill instructors had been 
greatly narrowed in the pre-Korean period, and the DI was no longer 
responsible for the instruction of his platoon in the whole range of military 
subjects included in basic training.  By an innovation introduced into the 
process of preparing recruits for the duties they would have to perform as 
Marines, on 2 April 1947, specialists began to instruct the boots in various 
parts of the training schedule.

     As originally begun, the new system involved the appointment of an 
officer and two noncommissioned officers in each of the recruit training 
battalions to teach special subjects. Where the drill instructors had had no 
better place to deliver lectures than the squad rooms, with the recruits 
seated on buckets or locker boxes, classrooms were now provided, equipped with 
blackboards, training charts, benches, and tables.  The officer gave courses 
titled "Maps and Compasses" and "Mission and History of the Marine Corps." One 
of the noncoms lectured on "Scouting and Patrolling" and "Military Sanitation, 
Personal Hygiene, and First Aid," while the other's subjects were "Combat 
Principles, Rifle Squad" and "Combat Formations, Rifle Squad." All these 
original specialist instructors had been prepared for duties at the Marine 
Corps Schools, Quantico, Virginia, where they had received instruction for two 
weeks in educational and psychological techniques and in public speaking.<75>

     Although the special subjects were changed from time to time as 
considered necessary or desirable, the procedure remained essentially the 
same.  These subjects were all taught by specialists, and the drill 
instructor, though he might be asked a few questions about them by his 
recruits, was relieved of the responsibility for teaching them.  Nevertheless, 
his function, though narrowed in scope, remained extremely important; for 
besides exercising the men in close- and extended-order drill, he was also 
charged with inculcating in them such intangibles as pride, loyalty, 
self-confidence, discipline, initiative, adaptability, and esprit de corps. To 
carry out his mission, he retained control of his unit, subject to periodic 
inspections.<76>  Thus, his role continued to be a key one, and it was 
essential that men assigned to this duty be properly prepared.  The setting up 
of the school for drill instructors in October 1950 was a step intended to 
ensure such preparation.

     A further step affecting the preparation of drill instructors for their 
work was taken two years later.  A new school was organized and opened on 6 
October 1952, with a course lasting three and one-half weeks.  For admission 
to this school an applicant was required to be 21 years of age and to have the 
ability to deal with people, a neat appearance, alertness, a suitable voice, 
self-confidence, and have a GCT of not less than 100.<77>


     By the first half of 1954, these entrance requirements had been modified 
somewhat.  Private first class had constituted a large majority of the opening 
class in the new school in October 1952, but now noncommissioned-officer 
status was made a prerequisite for admission.  Proficiency marks of at least 
eight had become necessary, but the age requirement had been lowered to 20 and 
a GCT score as low as 90 had become acceptable.  In personality, besides a 
high degree or command presence, the important characteristics of mental 
maturity and emotional stability were prescribed, and examination by a 
psychiatrist had become a regular part of the screening process.<78>

     By this time only four of every ten men who applied were accepted.  
Formed into classes of at least 50 each, they studied a course divided into 
four parts: leadership, drill, instructor orientation, and the nomenclature 
and functioning of the M-1 rifle.<79>  Except for slight changes in the 
subjects studied and the lengthening of the course to five weeks, this 
description applies today.  Because of the rigorous standards of the school, 
40 per cent of its students have failed during the past two years; but only 
its graduates, beginning as junior DI's, are assigned to drill-instructing 
duties at Parris Island.<80>

     Despite the great care thus used in the selection of men assigned to 
train recruits, a tragedy resulting from the grievous errors of judgment of a 
junior drill instructor occurred on Parris Island in April 1956.  Various 
regulations and standing orders of the post were violated at the same time.  
The offending DI was Staff Sergeant Matthew C. McKeon, assigned to Platoon 71, 
"A" Company, 3d Recruit Training Battalion.<81>  On Sunday night, 8 April, 
between 2000 and 2045, he marched 74 men of Platoon 71 from their barracks to 
Ribbon Creek, one of the tidal streams on Parris Island, and led the men into 
the water.  Some of them got into depths over their heads, panic ensued, and 
six recruits drowned in the resulting confusion.  The ostensible purpose of 
the march was to teach the recruits discipline.<82>

     A court of inquiry was convened the next day by Major General Joseph C. 
Burger, Commanding General, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, to 
investigate the circumstances.  Evidence presented to the court showed that 
Sergeant McKeon had graduated from the Drill Instructors' School in February 
1956, ranking 14th in a class of 55 graduates; a total of 90 students had 
begun the course in his class.  He had been screened by the Psychiatric 
Observation Unit on 3 January 1956 and given the highest possible rating on 
"motivation," "emotional stability," and "hostility factors," and a 
better-than-average rating on "achievement."  The conclusion of the 
psychiatric unit was that McKeon was a mature, stable appearing career 


     The court was of the opinion, after considering all the evidence brought 
before it, that the directives governing the recruit-training program were 
correct and adequate.<84>  These directives, which went into some detail in 
prohibiting oppression of recruits and in forbidding training operations in 
the nature of punishment, were repeatedly impressed upon students in the Drill 
Instructor's School and upon senior and junior drill instructors.<85>  In the 
opinion of the court, supervision of the training program was adequate.<86> 
The court's findings of fact and its opinions based on these findings placed 
the blame for the accident squarely on Sergeant McKeon, who, "in conducting an 
unauthorized and unnecessary march by night into an area of hazard...which 
resulted in the deaths of six brother Marines, not only broke established 
regulations but violated the fine traditions of the noncommissioned officers 
of the United States Marine Corps and betrayed the trust reposed in him by his 
Country, his Corps, his lost comrades and the families of the dead."<87>  It 
recommended, among other that the sergeant be tried by general 

     After making certain clarifying and supplementary remarks, General Burger 
approved the proceedings, findings, opinions, and recommendations.<89>

     When the record of proceedings of the court of inquiry was reviewed by 
the Commandant of the Marine Corps, General Randolph McC. Pate, he was of the 
opinion that the court's action in the case had not gone as far as it should 
have. The degree of guilt attributable to Sergeant McKeon, he believed, was 
only part of the question.  The Marine Corps itself was on trial in a moral 
sense for the death of the six recruits, in his opinion, and he believed that 
a reorganization of training procedures at Parris Island, "insofar as the 
supervision thereof is concerned," was necessary.<90>

     Thus, a separate recruit training command was established at Parris 
Island, to be commanded by a brigadier general selected by the Commandant and 
reporting directly to him.  In this way, the Commandant could "personally 
control and monitor the steps which must be taken to insure more effective 
supervision of our recruit training system." A similar recruit training 
command was to be established at San Diego.  Each of these recruit training 
commands was to be staffed with specially selected officers "to supervise and 
monitor but not to supplant the drill instructors" in the training of 
recruits. At Headquarters Marine Corps, in Washington, the Commandant 
appointed an Inspector General of Recruit Training to assist him in the close 
supervision of this new administrative machinery.  These extraordinary 
measures would remain in effect, he said, until he was convinced that no 
reasonable objection could be made to the Marine Corps training program.<91>


     Thus Sergeant McKeon's ill-fated march set off immediate repercussions 
which shook Marine Corps training from top to bottom.  Moreover, an 
uninterrupted flood of publicity by the press, radio, and television literally 
divided the entire country into two opposing camps, those who condemmed McKeon 
for what had happened and those who sympathized with him.

     It was in this glare of public gaze that McKeon's court-martial began at 
Parris Island on 16 July 1956.  A noted New York trial counsel, Emile Zola 
Berman, undertook the sergeant's defense before the military court.  For three 
weeks, the battle ebbed and flowed, concerned as much with the propriety of 
the rationale and practices of Marine Corps training as with McKeon's 
responsibility for the Ribbon Creek affair.  Witnesses came forward to defend 
Marine training, others came forth to condemn it.  The defense presentation 
culminated in the appearance on the stand of retired Lieutenant General Lewis 
B. Puller and the Commandant of the Marine Corps himself.

     Finally, on 4 August 1956, the court handed down its decision:  McKeon 
was acquitted of charges of manslaughter and oppression of troops; he was 
found guilty of negligent homicide and drinking on duty.  The sentence was a 
fine of $270, nine months confinement at hard labor as a private and a 
bad-conduct discharge from the Marine Corps.  Upon review by the Secretary of 
the Navy, the sentence was reduced to three months hard labor and reduction to 
the rank of private; the discharge was set aside and the fine remitted.

     Having already served part of his term prior to sentencing, McKeon was 
released from custody on 19 October 1956 and restored to duty commensurate 
with his reduced rank.  By then, most of the public tumult had died, but there 
was little doubt that 8 April 1956 had become an historic date in the history 
of Marine Corps training, whether it be at Parris Island or elsewhere.  The 
drownings at Ribbon Creek had brought the training system of the Corps to 
public attention in an exceedingly unfavorable light.  The Marine Corps, 
normally a strictly voluntary organization, had always derived much of its 
strength and prestige from the confidence reposed in it by the general 
citizenry of the United States.  If this confidence, which had been seriously 
shaken in many sectors of the populace, could not be restored, the general 
cause of the Corps would suffer.  In the 41 years of its existence as a major 
center of Marine training, Parris Island had never faced a more serious 
challenge; for now, in addition to its primary mission of training new 
Marines, it was of utmost importance to assure the American people, by the 
power of example, that the rigors of recruit discipline and work were 
sufficiently tempered by humanity and common sense as to prevent the 
recurrence of tragedies such as Ribbon Creek.


     Basically, nothing was wrong with recruit training at Parris Island, but 
some changes were instituted in training procedures, customs, and philosophy.  
Most of the changes can be traced to the objective of saving for the drill 
instructor his over-all authority while eliminating every reason that might 
cause him to abuse it.<92>

     Drill instructors were more carefully selected, and a special school was 
established to assure that only the best of them became recruit trainers.  
Three instructors were assigned each recruit platoon instead of two, while 
extra pay of $30 a month was provided each DI to help compensate him for the 
extra hours his job required.  All training was closely supervised by a team 
of officers to seek ways of improving procedures so as to best provide the 
type of Marine recruit graduate desired.  Drill instructors were directed to 
put a greater premium on example, persuasion, psychology, and leadership in 
bringing a platoon of recruits into shape.<93>

     A special training unit was set up at Parris Island to take care of 
recruits with specific problems.  A conditioning platoon, designed to take 
care of those overweight, provided special diet and proper exercise to help 
its members lose up to 30 pounds within three weeks.  A motivation platoon for 
the recalcitrants and a proficiency platoon for the slow learners were 
established.  A strength platoon provided for those requiring special 
exercises to build up flabby muscles, and a hospital platoon took care of 
those requiring medical attention.  More than three-fourths of the recruits 
sent to such special platoons return to their regular platoons to successfully 
complete the training program.  The Marine Corps does not give up on a recruit 
until he has had thorough physical and psychiatric examinations and has had 
repeated interviews and careful study by a board of officers.  Most of them 
get through boot camp, with the rejection rate about 4-1/2 percent at Parris 
Island in 1959.<94>

     There is general agreement that the basic training at Parris Island is 
professionally excellent and that the physical training is the best in the 
history of the Recruit Depot.  It may not be like the 'old Corps,' but Parris 
Island is turning out Marines mentally and physically ready to maintain, and 
even enhance, the reputation of the Marine Corps.  In the words of Commandant 
David M. Shoup, "The Marines we are turning out at Parris Island today can cut 
the mustard with any Marine who ever lived and fought.<95>



(1) D. D. Wallace, "Port Royal," "Dictionary of American History," ed. James 
Truslow Adams (2d ed., rev., 5 vols, and index; New York: Charles Scribner's 
Sons, 1946, IV, 315-316; George H. Osterhout, Jr. (Maj, USMC), "After Three 
Hundred and Fifty Years," "Marine Corps Gazette," v. 8, no. 2 (June 1923), pp. 

(2) D. D. Wallace,. "loc. cit."

(3) R. H. Woody, "South Carolina," "Dictionary of American History," V, 125.

(4) W. E. Whitfield (Ens, USN), "Naval Station, Port Royal, S. C.," "A Naval 
Encyclopaedia" (Philadelphia:  L. R. Hamersly & Co., 1881), pp. 517-518.

(5) Navy Department, Bureau of Yards and Docks, "Federal-owned Real Estate 
Under the Control of the Department" (Washington: Government Printing Office, 
1937), p.345.

(6) "Annual Report of the Commandant of the Marine Corps," "Annual Report of 
the Secretary of the Navy," 1891, p. 617.

(7) "Ibid."; organizational muster roll.

(8) Organizational muster rolls for dates concerned.

(9) Organizational muster roll for Jan 1909; "AR of CMC," "AR of SecNav," 
1910, p. 802; Ibid., 1911, p. 526.

(10) "AR of CMC," "AR of SecNav", 1911, p. 526.

(11) "Ibid."; "Ibid.," 1912, p. 578.

(12) "AR of CMC," "AR of SecNav," 1912, p. 588.

(13) Muster rolls.

(14) BriGen J. H. Pendleton to Major General Commandant, 18 April 1919, 
subject: "Correct spelling of Parris Island." Copy located in Records & 
Research Section, Historical Branch, G-3, Headquarters, U. S. Marine Corps.

(15) Edwin N. McClellan (Maj, USMC), "The United States Marine Corps in the 
World War" (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1920, p. 25.


(16) W. R. Coyle, "Parris Island in the War," "Marine Corps Gazette," v. 10, 
no. 2 (Dec 1925), pp. 189-190.

(17) McClellan, "loc. cit."

(18) "History of Marine Barracks, Parris Island, South Carolina" (official ms. 
submitted by office of Commanding General, Marine Barracks Parris Island, to 
Commandant of the Marine Corps dated 14 Aug 1946, located in R&R Sec, Hist Br, 
G-3, HQMC), p. 7.

(19) Quoted in NavDept, BuY&D, "Federal--owned Real Estate...," p. 346.

(20) NavDept, BuY&D, "Federal---owned Real Estate...," p. 345.

(21) Navy Department, Bureau of Yards and Docks, "Activities of the Bureau of 
Yards and Docks, Navy Department, World War," "1917-1918" (Washington: 
Government Printing Office, 1921), p. 94.

(22) "Ibid."

(23) From compilation of information in reply to questionnaire from 
President's Commission on Veterans' Pensions, 1956.  Located in R&R Sec, Hist 
Br, G-3, HQMC).

(24) Osterhout, "op. cit." (see not 1), pp. 106-108; "Unveiling of Monument at 
Fort Charles," "Parris Island News," 26 Mar 1926 (copy located in R&R Sec, 
Hist Br, G-3, HQMC).

(25) See, for example, N. F. Willet, "The Romance of Parris Island," 
"Leatherneck," v. 14, no. 10 (Oct, 1931), p. 81.

(26) "History of MB, Parris Island" submitted by CG, MB, Parris Island, p. 9.

(27) "Ibid.," p. 10.

(28) "Ibid.," p. 11.

(29) "Ibid.," p. 12.

(3O) "Ibid.," p. 11.

(31) "Ibid.," p. 12.

(32) "Ibid.," p. 13.

(33) "Ibid.," p. 15-18.


(34) "Ibid.," p. 17; muster rolls.

(35) U. S. Naval Administration in World War II: "The Marine Corps" (MS, 
HistBr, HQMC).

(36) M-3 Op Diary, 7Dec41-31Dec44.  Dir P&P memo to CMC, 21Dec41, 1975-60-20.

(37) U. S. Naval Administration in World War II, "loc. cit."

(38) "History of MB, Parris Island" submitted by CG, MB, Parris Island, p. 18.

(39) "Ibid.," p. 17.

(40) BriGen C. A. Wynn ltr to CMC, 20Apr56, HistBr, HQMC

(41) Dir Div P&P memo to CMC, 21Dec41, 1975-60-20.  Dispatch, CMC to CG's MCS 
DS and MB PI, 26Dec41, 1975-60-20-10.

(42) Memo of telephone conversation between Col L. R. Jones and LtCol W. W. 
Rogers, 18Jan42, 1975-60-20-10.  CMC dispatch to CG MB PI 20Jan42, 
1975-60-20-10.  Dir P&P memo to CMC, 7Feb42, 1975-60-20-10.

(43) CMC ltr to CG MCB SD, 14Dec42, 1975-60-20-10.

(44) CMC ltr to CG's, PhibCorpsPacFlt, MB PI, MCB SD, and TC MB New River, 
26Jul42, 1975-60.

(45) BriGen C. A. Wynn, "op. cit.," and "History of MB, Parris Island."

(46) "Ibid."

(47) "Ibid."

(48) CMC ltr to CG Dept of Pac and CG MB PI, 1Dec43, 1975-60-20-10.

(49) Dir P&P to CMC (unnumbered), 19Jan44, 1975-60-20-10.

(50) CMC ltr to CG's Dept of Pac and MB PI, 26Jan44, 1975-60-20-10.

(51) CMC ltr to CG's Dept of Pac and MB PI, 24Feb44, 1975-60-20-10.

(52) Dir P&P memo to CMC, 23Feb44, 1975-60-20-10.


(53) Encl A (Eight wks rct trng) to CG MB PI ltr to CMC, 1Aug44.  Encl A (Rcrt 
sched of instr) to CO RD SD ltr to CMC, 4Aug44.  Both 1975-60-20-10.  M-3 Op 
Diary, 1941-45.  CMC dispatch to CG MB PI, 28Jun45, 1975-60-20-10.

(54) "History of MB, Parris Island," p. 29.

(55) The Maintenance Company apparently existed at this time, though not 
included in the list given in the source cited in note 22 (and for that reason 
placed in parentheses).  On page 4 of this source, the Maintenance Company is 
spoken of as having been disbanded, along with the Motor Transport Company and 
the Military Police Company, in March 1946, after which these units became 
detachments of Post Headquarters Company.

(56) "Command Narrative, Marine Barracks, Parris Island, South Carolina, from 
1 September 1945 to 1 October 1946." (ms submitted by Commanding General, 
Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South Carolina, to Commandant of 
the Marine Corps under covering letter 1660 HM/dw, ser. 3838, dtd 17Mar47), p. 

(57) "Ibid.," p. 4.

(58) "Ibid.," p. 4.

(59) "Ibid.," p. 4.

(60) "Ibid.," p. 6.

(61) "Ibid.," p. 7.

(62) "Ibid.," p. 9.

(63) "Command Narrative, Marine Barracks and Marine Corps Recruit Depot, 
Parris Island, South Carolina, from 1 October 1946 to 1 April 1947." (ms 
submitted by CO MCRD, Parris Island, South Carolina, under covering ltr 1660 
HM/dw, ser. 5389, dtd 17Apr47), p. 2.

(64) "Ibid.," pp. 2-3.

(65) "Ibid.," p. 3.  See Administrative Summary, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, 
Parris Island, South Carolina, from 1 April to 1 July l947." (ms submitted by 
CG MCRD, Parris Island South Carolina, to CMC under covering ltr 1660 JRH/dw, 
ser. 8589, dtd 16Jul47), p. 3, for the only explicit reference to the 
disbanding of the the Recruit Training Battalion that was found in the 
narrative prepared at Parris Island.


(66) "Parris Island Boot", v. 6, no. 2 (15Jan49), p. 1, col. 3.

(67) "Ibid.," no. 7 (19Feb49), p. 1, col. 2.

(68) "Ibid.," v. 7, no. 32 (27Jul50), p. 1, col. 1.

(69) "Ibid.," v. 7, no. 32 (27Jul50), p. 1, col.

(70) "Ibid.," no. 36 (24Aug50), p. 1, col. 3.

(71) "Ibid.," no. 35 (17Aug50), p. 1, col. 1.

(72) "Ibid.," no. 41 (28Sep50), p. 1, col. 4.

(73) "Ibid.," no. 42 (5Oct50), p. 1, col. 3, indicates there are six recruit 
training battalions in an article about the Marine Memorial.

(74) Paul Sarokin (MSgt, USMC), "DI Prep," "Leatherneck," v. 37, no. 6 
(Jun54), p. 21.

(75) "Administrative Summary, Parris Island, from 1 April to 1 July 1957," pp. 

(76) Sarokin, "op. cit.," p. 23.

(77) "Parris Island Boot," v. 9, no. 41 (10Oct52), p. 1, col. 1.

(78) Sarokin, "op. cit.," p. 22.

(79) "Ibid."

(80) Commanding General, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South 
Carolina, to Judge Advocate General of the Navy via Commandant of the Marine 
Corps, 1st end on record of proceedings, court of inquiry ordered 9Apr56, 
DLF:emp A17-6, dtd 24Apr56 (copy appended to "Statement of Randolph McC. Pate, 
General, United States Marine Corps, Commandant, U. S. Marine Corps, 
Washington, D. C., 1 May 1956"), par. 10.

(81) "Findings of Fact" of court of inquiry ordered 9Apr56 at Parris Island 
(copy appended to "Statement of Randolph McC. Pate, General, United States 
Marine Corps..., 1 May 1956"), no. 3.

(82) "Ibid.," nos. 13-20; the number of recruits participating in the march is 
given in CG MCRD, Parris Island to JAG via CMC, 1st end on record of 
proceedings..., dtd 24Apr56, par. 21.


(83) CG MCRD, Parris Island, to JAG via CMC, 1st end on record of 
proceedings..., dtd 24Apr56, par. 12.

(84) "Opinions" of court of inquiry ordered 9Apr56 at Parris Island (copy 
appended to "Statement of Randolph McC. Pate, General, United States Marine 
Corps..., 1 May 1956"), no. 3.

(85) CG MCRD, Parris Island..., pars. 11, 17, 18, 26 f and g.

(86) "Opinions," nos. 1-3.

(87) "Ibid.," no. 20.

(88) "Recommendations" of court of inquiry ordered 9Apr56 at Parris Island 
(copy appended to "Statement of Randolph McC. Pate, General, United States 
Marine Corps..., 1 May 1956"), no. 1.

(89) CG MCRD, Parris Island..., par. 35.

(90) Commandant of the Marine Corps to Secretary of the Navy via Judge 
Advocate General, ltr dtd 30Apr56, subject "Record of Proceedings of a court 
of inquiry convened at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South 
Carolina, by order of the Commanding General dated 9 April 1956" (copy 
appended to "Statement of Randolph McC. Pate, General, United States Marine 
Corps..., 1 May l956"), par. 15.

(91) "Ibid.," par. 15 a-e.

(92) George McMillan, "P. I. Today," "Marine Corps Gazette," v. 45, no. 11 
(Nov61), pp. 50-52.

(93) "The New York Times," (15Nov59), p. 27.

(94) "Ibid."

(95) Quoted in McMillan, "op. cit.," p. 51.


                   PARRIS ISLAND, SOUTH CAROLINA, 1891-1956

                    Marine Detachment U. S. Naval Station,
                          Port Royal, South Carolina

1stSgt       Richard DONOVAN                    26 Jun 1891 - 15 Jul 1892
1stSgt       John GLYNN                         16 Jul 1892 - 17 Mar 1893
1stSgt       Michael GALLAGHER                  18 Mar 1893 - 30 Apr 1895
1stLt        Clarence A. INGATE                  1 May 1895 - 14 Sep 1896

                     Marine Barracks, U. S. Naval Station,
                          Port Royal, South Carolina

1stLt        Henry C. HAINES                    15 Sep 1896 - 20 Apr 1898
1stSgt       Michael GALLAGHER                  21 Apr 1898 - 26 Jul 1898
1stSgt       Edward H. HOLT                     27 Jul 1898 -  4 Aug 1898
2dLt         Arthur T. MARIX                     5 Aug 1898 - 21 Sep 1898
Capt         Henry C. HAINES                    22 Sep 1898 -  4 Apr 1899
1stSgt       Edward H. HOLT                      5 Apr 1899 - 23 Apr 1899
Capt         Albertus W. CATLIN                 24 Apr 1899 - 31 Mar 1902
Capt         Thomas S. BORDEN                    1 Apr 1902 - 11 Oct 1903
Capt         William N. MC KELVY                12 Oct 1903 - 18 Nov 1904
Capt         Charles H. LYMAN                   19 Nov 1904 - 27 Jun 1906
Capt         William C. HARLLEE                 28 Jun 1906 - 16 Sep 1906
Cpl          Frank MIGL                         17 Sep 1906 - 23 Nov 1906
 Act'g 1stSgt)
1stSgt       Peter LUND                         24 Nov 1906 -  6 Feb 1907
Cpl          Frank MIGL                          7 Feb 1907 - 28 Feb 1907
 Act'g 1stSgt)
GySgt        Edward H. HOLT                      1 Mar 1907 -  9 Jul 1908
1stSgt       Edward H. HOLT                     10 Jul 1908 - 31 Dec 1908

                           Marine Officers' School,
                          Port Royal, South Carolina

LtCol        Eli K. COLE                         1 Jan 1909 - 11 Dec 1909
Capt         Richard M. CUTTS                   12 Dec 1909 - 15 May 1910
LtCol        Eli K. COLE                        16 May 1910 - 25 Apr 1911
Capt         Richard M. CUTTS                   26 Apr 1911 - 29 Jun 1911
LtCol        Lewis A. LUCAS                     30 Jun 1911 - 30 Aug 1911

                               Marine Barracks,
                          Port Royal, South Carolina

Capt         Elias R. BEADLE                    25 Oct 1915 - 11 Feb 1917
Col          Thomas A. TREADWELL                12 Feb 1917 - 21 Jun 1917


                               Marine Barracks,
                         Paris Island, South Carolina

Col          Thomas C. TREADWELL                22 Jun 1917 - 18 Dec 1917
Maj          Elias R. BEADLE (Act'g)            20 Dec 1917 - 25 Jan 1918
BriGen       John T. MYERS                       2 Sep 1918 - 12 Nov 1918
BriGen       Joseph H. PENDLETON                13 Nov 1918 -  2 May 1919

                               Marine Barracks,
                        Parris Island, South Carolina

BriGen       Joseph H. PENDLETON                 3 May 1919 - 24 Sep 1919
BriGen       Eli K. COLE                        25 Sep 1919 -  8 Aug 1924
Col          Charles H. LYMAN (Act'g)            9 Aug 1924 - 12 Aug 1924
BriGen       Harry LEE                          13 Aug 1924 - 11 Aug 1927
LtCol        Richard P. WILLIAMS                12 Aug 1927 - 27 Sep 1927
BriGen       Logan FELAND                       28 Sep 1927 -  3 Jan 1928
LtCol        Richard P. WILLIAMS                 4 Jan 1928 - 15 Mar 1928
Maj          Henry N. MANNEY, Jr.               16 Mar 1928 - 10 Apr 1928
Maj          Arthur RACICOT                     11 Apr 1928 - 15 Apr 1928
LtCol        Richard P. WILLIAMS                16 Apr 1928 - 16 Oct 1928
Col          Harold C. SNYDER                   17 Oct 1928 -  5 Jul 1929
LtCol        Henry N. MANNEY, Jr.                6 Jul 1929 - 14 Jul 1929
Col          Eli T. FRYER                       15 Jul 1929 -  1 Oct 1929
BriGen       Harry LEE                           2 Oct 1929 - 23 Feb 1933
BriGen       Randolph C. BERKELEY               24 Feb 1933 - 24 May 1936
Col          Jesse F. DYER (Act'g)              25 May 1936 - 14 Jul 1936
BriGen       James T. BUTTRICK                  15 Jul 1936 -  2 May 1937
Col          Jesse F. DYER (Act'g)               3 May 1937 - 30 Jun 1937
LtCol        Lyle H. MILLER (Act'g)              1 Jul 1937 - 12 Jul 1937
BriGen       Douglas C. MC DOUGAL               13 Jul 1937 - 12 Aug 1939
Col          Miles R. THACHER (Act'g)           13 Aug 1939 - 30 Aug 1939
LtCol        Louis R. JONES (Act'g)             31 Aug 1939 - 15 Sep 1939
MajGen       James C. BRECKINRIDGE              16 Sep 1939 -  3 Sep 1941
Col          Louis R. JONES (Act'g)              4 Sep 1941 - 14 Sep 1941
Col          Harry L. SMITH                     15 Sep 1941 - 18 Sep 1941
BriGen       Emile P. MOSES                     19 Sep 1941 - 30 Apr 1944
Col          Harry L. SMITH (Act'g)              1 May 1944 -  4 May 1944
MajGen       Clayton B. VOGEL                    5 May 1944 -  1 Feb 1946
BriGen       Samuel L. HOWARD (Act'g)            2 Feb 1946 - 12 Feb 1946
BriGen       Julian C. SMITH                    13 Feb 1946 -  1 Oct 1946
Col          Bernard DUBEL (Act'g)               2 Oct 1946 -  8 Oct 1946
MajGen       Franklin A. HART                    9 Oct 1946 - 30 Nov 1946


                         Marine Corps Recruit Depot,
                        Parris Island, South Carolina

MajGen       Franklin A. HART                    1 Dec 1946 - 17 Jan 1948
Col          Bernard DUBEL (Act'g)              18 Jan 1948 - 20 Feb 1948
MajGen       Alfred H. NOBLE                    21 Feb 1948 - 17 Jul 1950
Col          Lester S. HAMEL (Act'g)            18 Jul 1950 - 16 Aug 1950
MajGen       Robert H. PEPPER                   17 Aug 1950 - 29 Jan 1952
BriGen       Matthew C. HORNER                  30 Jan 1952 - 29 Feb 1952
MajGen       Merwin H. SILVERTHORN               1 Mar 1952 - 30 Jun 1952
MajGen       Edwin A. POLLOCK                    1 Jul 1954 - 14 Jan 1956
MajGen       Joseph C. BURGER                   15 Jan 1956 - 11 May 1956
MajGen       Homer L. LITZENBERG                12 May 1956 - 15 Mar 1957
BriGen       Wallace M. GREENE                  16 Mar 1957 - 24 May 1957
BriGen       George R. E. SHELL                 25 Mar 1957 -  4 Jul 1957
MajGen       Robert B. LUCKEY                    5 Jul 1957 - 10 May 1959
MajGen       David M. SHOUP                     11 May 1959 - 19 Oct 1959
BriGen       George R. E. SHELL                 20 Oct 1959 - 30 Jun 1960
MajGen       Thomas G. ENNIS                     1 Jul 1960 - 30 Jun 1962
BriGen       Raymond L. MURRAY                   1 Jul 1962 -


These items and much more can be found at The Marine Corps Research Center (MCRC)

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