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View Full Version : Camps vs. Forts


chacoguy
07-14-2008, 09:23 PM
In terms of Army posts, what's the difference between a Camp and a Fort? During the Korean conflict, it was Camp Carson, now it's Fort Carson; what changed?

dolphinboy
07-14-2008, 10:13 PM
According to Wikipedia... a military camp or bivouac is a semi-permanent facility for the lodging of an army. Camps are erected when a military force travels away from a major installation or fort during training or operations, and often have the form of large campsites.

Forts = permanent
Camps = temporary or semi-permanent

cite... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Army_camp

Jonathan Chance
07-14-2008, 10:37 PM
Fort = Army. They have permanent installations.

Camp = Marines. They have a mythos that they're always ready to pack up and move quickly. Even if the place looks like a small town or something it is referred to (mostly) as a Camp.

Koxinga
07-14-2008, 11:02 PM
On the other hand, I believe that Camp Mabry (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camp_Mabry) in Austin is primarily affiliated with the Texas Army National Guard, as well as being permanent headquarters for Texas military forces.

BTW, I love it that states have their own militaries. People I've met from outside the US are usually extremely surprised at the notion.

fiddlesticks
07-15-2008, 12:01 AM
San Antonio, TX has Fort Sam Houston, a large Army base with a bunch of hospitals and other facilities. It also has Camp Bullis, which is a large wilderness area on the north side of town where they train the medics who are based at Sam Houston, among other things. This appears to follow the "rule" from the Wikipedia entry.

Fear Itself
07-15-2008, 12:01 AM
Camp Pendleton in California was officially declared a permanent installation (http://www.pendleton.usmc.mil/impact/history.asp) in October of 1944.

Voyager
07-15-2008, 01:56 PM
Fort = Army. They have permanent installations.

Camp = Marines. They have a mythos that they're always ready to pack up and move quickly. Even if the place looks like a small town or something it is referred to (mostly) as a Camp.
During World War Twice, my father was in Camp Stewart and Camp Gordon in Georgia - definitely Army. I was just near there, and they are both Forts today. So, there are definitely Camps in the Army - or were 65 years ago.

bump
07-15-2008, 07:30 PM
There are a slew of "Camps" in Iraq- chief among them Camps Victory, Slayer, Liberty and Striker.

Smaller places are FOBs (Forward Operating Bases).

Polycarp
07-16-2008, 12:31 AM
Having grown up near an Army installation which changed from Camp to Fort, and having noticed the nomenclature change on other installations, can I offer the following?

1. As noted by Jonathan Chance, all Marine installations use Camp rather than Fort, for the reasons he gave.

With regard to Army installations:

2. Fort designates a permanent installation hosting a significant-sized contingent, normally one or more divisions (though some are smaller).

3, Camp designates everything else, including (a) temporary installations, (b) semi-permanent installations without large contingents permanently stationed there, and (c) predominantly training facilities.

Camp Drum (renamed from Pine Camp), NY, was the large cool-climate training facility for Northeast reserve and National Guard units. When it became the host facility for the 10th Mtn. (Lt. Inf.) Division, the name was changed to Fort Drum. While extensive new construction happened to be required to house a division-sized contingent on a permanent basis, the military reservation area itself was not expanded, and my impression was that the construction merely was intended to replace the WWII-vintage barracks used for recruit training during the war and for reservist training thereafter for nearly 40 years.