Fort Wainwright is a complementary camp to Fairbanks, a more important and large post of Alaska. It is one of the few strategical camps located in the far western state of the United States.
The fort was initially built in 1939. It belonged to the air force troops and was designed to test various equipments and weapons under arctic and extreme weather conditions. After World War II, the post was taken over by the army and its name was changed to what it is today, in the memory of general Jonathan W. Wainwright. Until 1972, the camp hosted the 171st Infantry Brigade. The inhabitants changed in 1986, when the 6th Infantry Division took over the place until 1998. The 172nd Infantry Brigade joined in after 1998, for the place to be given to the 25th Infantry Division in 2006.
In other words, both the population and the objectives of the camp changed more times over the years. If it was one of the best testing spots for harsh weapons in the beginnings, these days it is one of the largest training camps on the US territory.
Fort Wainwright was run by only 50 men in its first years. These days, it hosts around 7,700 soldiers, not to mention about their families. Overall, the whole population counts more than 15,000 individuals. You can count infantry and field artillery soldiers, as well as professional engineers, logistic support units and medical staff. Although the camp is designated for training activities only, the personnel is always ready to fight for the interests of the United States or various humanitarian actions.
The extreme location of the fort brings in plenty of disadvantages too. The area was marked with a red sign due to the multiple intoxication substances around, such as mercury, chromium, lead, fuels and oils. For many years, no one knew about these dangers. Besides, the Chena river also goes through the contaminated area. These days, things are a lot safer though.
The housing system at Fort Wainwright is very efficient. The support faction is very active, whether some new soldiers are supposed to get here for a longterm support or for a temporary and fast deployment. Unlike other camps in the country, the process is fast and secure. Most newcomers are assigned some sponsors to guide them throughout the accommodation process. They are thought where to find the things they need and how things work in the camp.
All the companies – temporary or not – are trained together, ensuring a strong connection between the soldiers. They learn how to work together and respect each other, as a large family. The operations and services go smooth, without too much struggle.
The Fort Wainwright facilities are among the most complete ones in the country, whether you are a civilian or a soldier. You benefit from medical services, schools, entertainment posts, as well as personal and self training centers. In other words, the life inside the campus is as normal as the life outside of it.