April 15, 2018 – Full diary entry:
“New York City.
Took ferry across to Long Island. Took train to Camp Mills.”
Camp Mills was on Long Island, very near the site where Hofstra University is today. More history of the camp below.
The mission of Camp Mills was initially the preparation of Army units prior to their deployment to Europe in World War I. It was reestablished April 4, 1918, as a part of the New York Port of Embarkation at Hoboken, New Jersey to obtain additional facilities for troops in transit to Europe.
Camp Mills was expanded to a containment with wooden buildings for the accommodation of thousands of troops, who arrived from training camps across the United States. At Camp Mills the units waited until they could be scheduled for embarkation. Facilities at Camp Mills included a hospital, warehouses, bakery, delousing plant and other facilities. It eventually consisted of about 1,200 buildings with a capacity of 46,000, including space for 40,000 transients (about half in barracks, half in tents), a 500 inmate detention camp and 5,500 members of a permanent garrison.
A very large number of American soldiers shipped out to France from Camp Mills, at its peak in September 1918, over 31,000 troops were stationed there. Notable individuals who were assigned during World War I were: Douglas MacArthur, Wild Bill Donovan, Joyce Kilmer and Father Duffy among them. F. Scott Fitzgerald was a soldier at Camp Mills.
Where was Robert today? See the timeline.