Fort Belvoir (Fort Humphreys) – Alexandria VA

Description

Originally called Fort Humphreys, this Army post was established during World War I. The name was changed to Fort Belvoir in 1935.

“Title I of the Work Relief and Public Works Appropriation Act gave $13,942,572 in WPA funds and $52,283,400 in PWA funds for Army housing. Spent at 64 posts, 285 projects, 1091 sets of quarters. These projects had to be substantially completed by Jan. 1, 1940…Both Jadwin Loop Village and Gerber Village expanded in 1939 with the addition of row houses using PWA workers.”   (http://www.fortbelvoirhousinghistory.com)

WPA work on the site in 1938-40 included:

“Improve grounds at Fort Humphreys…including rehabilitating roads and sidewalks, installing drainage facilities, and performing incidental and appurtenant work; Rehabilitate barracks, buildings, and grounds, and perform work incidental and appurtenant thereto, at Fort Humphreys; improving and planting coping, reconstructing bandstand, and performing incidental and appurtenant work; Construct extensions to buildings, utilities, and facilities and improve grounds…Work includes constructing oil shed, curbs, gutters, walks, and fences; constructing extension to garage, wash rack, filter plant, warehouses, and facilities, coal trestle, gymnasium facilities, and temporary barracks; extending roads, fences, aprons, and street lighting system; resurfacing railroad yard; enlarging and painting lumber storage shed; cleaning out chamber of impounding dam; completing surface drainage system; grading; draining; removing temporary quarters; installing gate to entrance; clearing; changing drains.”  (National Archives)

There is also evidence of CCC work done on the site as well, including “…development of a recreation area, a rifle range, and conservation work.” (National Archives)

Source notes

“140 more district CCC boys to be put on defense projects,” Washington Post, February 12, 1941, p. 7

National Archives, Record Group 69, “Microfilmed Index to WPA Projects.”

Fort Belvoir Housing History 

“Army of 3,690 from WPA starts strengthening Capital defenses,” Washington Post, July 11, 1940, p. 5

Project originally submitted by Brent McKee - wpatoday.org on May 31, 2013.

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Location Info


Richmond Highway
Alexandria, VA 22060

Coordinates: 38.710841, -77.145825

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