Area 2 (Support, Mechanised and Armoured units)
- Military camp
Samsonvale Road, Kremzow Road, Old North Road and One Mile Creek, Cashmere 4500
Camp Strathpine was occupied by the US 1st Cavalry Division from mid 1943 to early 1944, and the camp was subsequently used by the 7th Division, 2nd Australian Imperial force (2nd AIF).
Most of the camp area has been developed for housing, but a few remnants still existed in 2009, most on private land. These include tent line mounds and a couple of concrete slabs in Area 1, east of Forgan Road, to north of Samsonvale Road; some concrete slabs in Area 2, located west of Ira Buckby Road and east of Kurrajong Drive; a deep trench latrine and concrete slabs in Area 3, south of Kremzow Road; a bread oven in Starling Street Park, Warner; and concrete slabs and a culvert in the northeast part of Area 4, either side of Kremzow Road.
Area 2 (Support, Mechanised and Armoured units) was located in Cashmere and Warner, bounded by Samsonvale Road, Kremzow Road, the Old North Road and One Mile Creek.
Camp Strathpine was built between December 1942 and July 1943 to accommodate the US 1st Cavalry Division, one of the four US Divisions (also including the 24th, 32nd and 41st Divisions) which trained in Queensland before being sent to New Guinea. The main body of the 1st Cavalry Division arrived in Brisbane on 26 July 1943 on the troopships USS George Washington and USS Monterey, an advanced echelon having arrived in late June on board the USS Maui. The 1st Cavalry, under Major General Innis P. Swift, was shipped as a Light Infantry division of 15,000 men equipped with vehicles instead of horses, and was assigned to the US Sixth Army.
Camp Strathpine was constructed by US troopers and Australian civilians, and the area’s forests, undergrowth, streams and ravines were used for jungle training. The men of the division also received amphibious warfare training at Toorbul Point, with practice landings on Bribie Island, while some trained at Port Stephens in NSW. Accommodation for most of the men was in tents, although the camp had plenty of buildings, including latrines, ablutions, shower enclosures, kitchens, canteens, recreation huts, water and power supply buildings, mess sheds and shelters, warehouses, various huts and store buildings, offices (at the HQ), picture theatres, and a prison stockade. Some log cabins were also built as mess halls.
Although the original design of the camp intended to make maximum use of natural cover, the felling of trees to erect rows of tents negated this plan. Tented areas had pathways gravelled with log edges, with logs also laid around the tents, while trees and stumps were painted white to 4′ (1.2m) high, to assist night navigation around the camp. The main fresh water pumping plant for the camp was at Gordon’s Crossing, with another pumping station at Young’s Crossing.
The site of Camp Strathpine stretched from Lakeside Road near Dakabin Station in the north to just south of the South Pine River at Albany Creek.
This camp area was based around three wartime roads which no longer exist: Howze Road, Stuart Road and Pleasanton Road. The units camped here were most likely the Military Police Platoon; the 302nd Reconnaissance Troop (Mechanised); the 603rd Light (later Medium) Tank Company; and the 16th Quartermaster Squadron. The 302nd and the 603rd were created in December 1943 out of the 7th Reconnaissance Squadron. The 302nd included a unique radio unit with Lakota and Dakota Indians (The Code Talkers") who used the Sioux language to thwart Japanese attempts to listen in on US radio communications.
See also - Camp Strathpine (Main page)
Spethman, DW; Miller, RG; Deighton, LJ, October 2000. Divisional Camp- Strathpine, 1943-45. US 1st Cavalry Division, Australian 7th Division (2nd AIF). Fort Lytton Historical Association Inc.
Charlton, P. 1991. South Queensland WWII 1941–45, Boolarong, Brisbane.
Boudreau, WH. 2002. 1st Cavalry Division—a spur ride through the 20th Century, from horses to the digital battlefield. Turner Publishing Company, Paducah, KY.
Casey, Hugh J., ed. 1951, “Volume VI: Airfield and Base Development", Engineers of the Southwest Pacific 1941–1945, Washington, D.C, United States Department of the Army.
National Archives of Australia, Folder O to S Folio 63. Strathpine Camp Military Area - Roads and Facilities of Unit Areas - Site Plan [1/S/40]. 1945
National Archives of Australia LS705. Strathpine camp area 1942.
Dunn, P. Camp Strathpine in Brisbane
Dunn, P. 1st Cavalry Division United States Army based at Camp Strathpine, Qld and Port Stephens, NSW during WW2
1st Cavalry Division (United States)
1st Cavalry Division Association
31/51st Battalion (Kennedy/ Far North Queensland Regiment)
36th Battalion (St George’s English Rifle Regiment)
DERM archaeological site reconnaissance 1 October 2009.
Australian War Memorial Photographic Collection.
State Library of Queensland, John Oxley Library Photographic Collection.
Strathpine Library, Moreton Bay Region Libraries, Photographic Collection.