Army

June 14, 2013

Military Intelligence – this week in history

SSA-Analysts-(1)
Analysts work under crowded conditions in one of the two large temporary buildings constructed at Arlington Hall to provide more space.

Arlington Hall – From Coeds to Codewords
 

Arlington Hall in 1942

The following article was written by members of the Intelligence and Security Command History Office, and published in their pamphlet, “On the Trail of Military Intelligence History: A guide to the Washington, D.C. area.”

June 10, 1942

History has a way of leaving its mark on contemporary scenes in a way that fascinates generations to come. Memorable events and settings can endow a place with an aura of greatness – a lasting reminder of great achievements. Such a place is Arlington Hall.

The 1941 edition of the Arlington Hall Junior College for Women brochure boasted to prospective students of a 100-acre campus offering “ … interesting variety with its open lawns, landscaped gardens and wooded sections.” The main floor of the yellow-brick classic colonial building housed the offices of the school’s president, dean, registrar and a well-stocked library. An auditorium was adjacent to the library. Drawing rooms, parlors and classrooms comprised the remainder of the main floor. On the upper floors were the dormitory rooms, while behind the building stood the gymnasium and swimming pool. (Both the main school building, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, and the gymnasium remain intact today.)

Unfortunately for the college, 1942 brought not students, but military and civilian personnel of the Signal Intelligence Service, or SIS. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the scope of signals intelligence, or SIGINT, operations quickly exceeded the confines of the Munitions Building in Washington, D.C. The SIS needed a secure location with room to accommodate their expanding mission, and by chance stumbled upon the college.

A party of officers, returning from an inspection of proposed locations for a new monitoring site at Vint Hill Farms, near Warrenton, Va., drove by the college grounds. They decided to stop. Their preliminary inspection of the grounds convinced the officers of the site’s suitability. Arlington Hall was convenient to Warrenton and just four miles from Washington, yet isolated enough to provide the security so vital to a SIGINT mission. On June 10, 1942, the Army took possession of the college under the War Powers Act.

Analysts work under crowded conditions in one of the two large temporary buildings constructed at Arlington Hall to provide more space.

Once SIS completed its move to Arlington Hall, the grounds were soon covered with barracks and hastily-constructed temporary office buildings. Throughout the war, Arlington Hall was the scene of the vital U.S. effort to exploit the enemy’s communications as well as to secure its own. Here, 10,000 members of the Army’s signals intelligence effort accomplished one of the great intelligence triumphs of World War II: the successful decipherment of the Japanese Army’s cryptosystems. American success in code-breaking was credited with shortening the course of the war and saving countless lives.

Over the years, Arlington Hall Station hosted various Army and Department of Defense organizations. From 1945 to 1977, it served as the headquarters of the U.S. Army Security Agency, or ASA, a world-wide command providing intelligence to support the national intelligence effort and the Army in the field. ASA was followed by the U.S. Army Intelligence and Support Command until its relocation to Fort Belvoir in 1989. In May 1993, history repeated itself when Arlington Hall once again became the site of a school – the State Department’s Foreign Service Institute.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Video captures by Thom Williams

2-13th Avn. Regiment dedicates building to memory of UAS warrant officer

Video captures by Thom Williams Members of Chief Warrant Officer 2 Edward Balli’s family and other guests watch as Army officials unveil the plaque on Balli Hall during Tuesday’s memorialization ceremony. The building was n...
 
 
Robert Shields

Fort Hood shooting victim seeks to inspire others

Robert Shields Army 1st Lt. John Arroyo works on strengthening his right hand while his occupational therapist, Katie Korp, looks on at the Center for the Intrepid in Brooke Army Medical Center’s rehabilitation center at Join...
 
 
Maci Hidalgo

New home opens for predator drones at Libby Airfield

Maci Hidalgo Brig. Gen. Edward Maxwell speaks to the attendees during the 214th Reconnaissance Group, 162d Wing, Air National Guard ribbon cutting ceremony at Libby Air Field on Fort Huachuca. Maxwell said the new facility will...
 

 

TRICARE patients must attest to health care coverage

WASHINGTON — As tax season begins, Defense Department officials want to remind TRICARE beneficiaries of changes in the tax laws, which require all Americans to have health care insurance or potentially pay a tax penalty. For the first time since the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, all U.S. citizens, including Service members, military retirees...
 
 

Civilian of the Month

Steven Hall Agency: CECOM Logistics and Readiness Center, Communications Security Logistics Activity Position and duties: Facilities manager, and team lead for mailroom, property and supplies How long at current assignment: Since July 2007 How long in government service: 35 years, including 10 years in the military Residence: Sierra Vista Family: “Wife Debbie who resides with...
 
 

Pay off holiday debt in sensible manner

Some people spent too much on holiday gift giving, travel and entertaining, and now the credit card bills are coming due. Many are shocked to realize just how much they’ve spent. Paying for holiday expenses well into the new year doesn’t create the kind of holiday memories anyone wants. When a family’s income is stretched...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin