Goroskop Maia 2012
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Buildings Building Numbers
Building Numbers at Fort Slocum

Histories of Fort Slocum identify its buildings and structures by functional name or building number. Often they use both designations.

Both names and numbers, however, present challenges because they changed, often more than once, over the history of the post. For this reason, historians have found they must pay careful attention to the dates of documents that refer to buildings or structures to be certain which specific one is meant.

For example, Building 113 was a small building constructed in 1885 in the southeastern quadrant of the post. It was built for the storage of explosives as the post’s Powder Magazine. In 1940, however, it became the Blacksmith Shop, a function that continued until Fort Slocum closed in 1965. Before becoming Building 113 in the 1950s, it was identified successively in earlier periods as Building 48, Building 44 and Building 123.

Originally, the Army identified buildings and structures primarily by a name that described its function. A map of Davids Island from 1872, for instance, recorded the presence of the Surgeon’s Quarters, Headquarters, Sutler’s Shop, Bake House, Coal Shed, and Stables, among other buildings.

 

Building Numbers

055 features 1 and 2 235 m

Building number and construction date above main entrance in center tower, Barracks (Building 55), looking southeast, December 2005.

111-T E

Building number stenciled on wall beside entrance, west facade, Pistol Range Storehouse (Building T-111), looking east, November 2006.

B69 - Enl Barracks w 02

Building number on eastern wing of Barracks (Building 69), looking southwest, November 2004.

P3090168

Building number on door beside department identification sign, south side of Paint Shop (Building 32), looking north, March 2006.


Beginning in the 1880s, however, the Army used a number as well as a name to identify all of the post’s buildings. Capt. George H. Cook, then serving as Post Quartermaster, introduced the first systematic numbering system of the post’s buildings in about 1887. Later post quartermasters and engineers revised the system three times—in 1893, 1941 and 1957. Each revision changed nearly all of the identification numbers of buildings on the post.

The Army numbered not only Fort Slocum’s buildings, but most of its structures. The post’s water towers, band stand, flagpoles and piers, for example, all had “building” numbers at one time or another. It did not use street addresses, for no building at Fort Slocum had a street address, and until the 1930s the roads at the post did not even have names.

This Web site and the architectural studies by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers use a modified version of Fort Slocum’s 1957 building numbering system. Most of the building numbers are the same as in the 1957 system, but a few are different, usually because of transcription errors and other changes that were introduced by various study teams working on Davids Island well after the post closed.