Fort Huachuca is a Untied States Army Installation in Cochise County Arizona. The base lies approximately 15 miles north of the Mexican border and is within the city of Sierra Vista. Home of the Army Intelligence Center and the Network Enterprise Technology Command, Fort Huachuca is a hub of United States Army communications technology and training. The base shares nearby Libby Airfield with the civilian Sierra Vista Municipal Airport. Though never used, the Libby Airfield runway served as a backup landing location for United States space shuttles.
Originally known as Camp Huachuca, the base was constructed in 1877 to defend US interests from attacks by the Chiricahua Apache Indians and keep a watchful eye on the Mexican border. Renamed to Fort Huachuca in 1882, the base continued its mission until the surrender of the Apache leader Geronimo in 1886, effectively ending Apache resistance and attack. The base remained in operation however to guard against aggression from Mexico.
Fort Huachuca was used as a supply base by General Pershing in his ill-fated Mexican Expedition to pursue Pancho Villa from 1916 to 1917. It was during this time that the first ever African American officer ever attained the rank of Colonel. Colonel Charles Young took command of Fort Huachuca in the absence of any higher ranking officers.
From 1913 to 1933 Fort Huachuca was home to the Buffalo Soldiers of the 10th Cavalry Regiment. These African American mounted soldiers earned their name from battles with Cheyenne Indians in 1867, a reference to their fierce fighting ability and curly hair, which reminded the Cheyenne of a buffalo’s hide. In 1933 the 10th Cavalry regiment was reassigned and the 25th Infantry Regiment became the principle unit of the base.
During World War II Fort Huachuca became a full scale training ground for the African American 93rd and 92nd Infantry Divisions. Following the close of World War II, the United States Army transferred ownership to the Arizona Department of Fish and Game, completing the transfer in 1947. When war broke out in the Korean Peninsula, the newly formed United States Air Force took command of the base from the Arizona Department of Fish and Game to use a training facility. Control of the base soon transferred back to the Department of The Army, but was again closed in 1953.
In 1954 Fort Huachuca was revived with the establishment of the United States Army Electronic Proving Ground. The base gained further permanence with the establishment between 1960 and 1966 with the construction of the United States Army Electronic Warfare School Army Security Agency Test and Evaluation Center and the Combat Surveillance and Target Acquisition Training Command. In 1967 the United States Army Strategic Communications Command designated Fort Huachuca as their new headquarters, becoming the present day Army Communications Command. In 1976 the base as declared a National Landmark. The United States Army Systems Command established their headquarters at the base in 1984, later becoming the present day United States Army Network Enterprise Technology Command and 9th Army Signal Command.
Today, Fort Huachuca is home to approximately 6,500 active duty soldiers, 7,400 dependents and 5,000 civilian employees. During peak hours it’s not uncommon for there to be over 18,000 people on the base, making it one of the most active military installations in the United States.
Points of Interest on Fort Huachuca
Fort Huachuca has all the amenities of any modern city. Soldiers and families stationed at the base can enjoy a wide range of facilities including housing, pools, gyms, a PX with adjoining food court, gas stations, banks and the William Bliss Army Community Hospital. The base is also home to two museums. The United States Army Intelligence Museum displays the development and evolution of Army intelligence operations and technology. The Fort Huachuca Museum covers the history of the United States Army in the American Southwest.
Close By Points of Interest
The surrounding city of Sierra Vista offers everything soldiers and their family’s need that can’t be found on post. With a population of 44,000, the city has a high school, middle school, six elementary schools, several charter schools and four universities.
A wide range of housing options is available within Sierra Vista. Soldiers can readily find houses and apartments for purchase and rent, along with short term rentals for temporary assignments in the area.
The surrounding area is well known for its scenery and access to a range of outdoor activities. Soldiers stationed at Fort Huachuca can enjoy hiking, camping and fishing in several spots.
Permanent and Tennant Units
United States Army Intelligence Center
111th Military Intelligence Brigade
Information Systems Engineering Command (ISEC)
Advanced Airlift Tactics Training Center (AATTC), Western Division
Military Auxiliary Radio System (MARS) Headquarters
Army Network Enterprise Technology Command (NETCOM)
1st Battalion, 210th Aviation
11th Signal Brigade
Joint Interoperability Test Command
Electronics Proving Ground