Historic Markers Across Florida



Combat Team Camp Atlantic Beach



Marker ID: FLHM F-917
Location: at the intersection of Plaza Dr and Seminole Rd, Atlantic Beach, FL
County: Duval
Coordinates: N 30° 19.98    W 081° 24.128
  30.333    -81.40213333
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: None
 



Text:

Combat Team
Camp Atlantic Beach


Constructed by the U.S. Army in 1942, Combat Team Camp Atlantic Beach was the headquarters of the Harbor Defenses of Jacksonville during World War II. The camp was tasked with defending Florida’s Atlantic coast from Axis invasion following the sinking of the tanker SS Gulfamerica off Jacksonville Beach and the capture of Nazi saboteurs in Ponte Vedra. The 149-acre camp was leased by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers and supported rotating infantry and coastal artillery units. In its early days, the soldiers slept in tents on wooden platforms. Later, wooden huts housed six men each and had shutters that could be opened for ventilation. The 53rd Coast Artillery Regiment, which manned the four 155-mm long-range guns known as “Long Toms," was the camp’s anchor unit. The four artillery guns were flanked by 60-foot observation towers, though there are no visible remains today. The main camp was situated at present-day Selva Lakes and the gun placements were located at what is now Area 7 of Hanna Park. Although the camp never saw enemy action, it remained in service for 18 months until the U. S. military began a rapid reduction of its beach defense forces in 1944.






F-917 Sponsored by the City of Atlantic Beach,
and the Florida Department of State
2016