Marine Corps Base Hawaii History
The History of the Marine Corps Base Hawaii (MCBH) has been an evolving one. Since the first permanent garrison of Marines established itself in Hawaii in 1904, the Marine Corps has proudly maintained a presence on the island of Oahu.
The mission of MCBH is to provide forward-based, sustainable and secure training and operational support, facilities, and services to enable operational forces to accomplish their mission.
After decades of modernization, MCBH provides a broad range of support functions and facilities on one of the farthest extensions of American soil, producing readiness, promoting resiliency, protecting resources and projecting power into the Indo-Asia Pacific region and beyond.
Now, home to almost 10,000 Marines, sailors, and over 6,000 family members, MCBH continues to play a significant role in Hawaii.
Historical Timeline of the Marine Corps Base Hawaii
Installation Commisioned as Fort Kuwaaohe Army Military Reservation
The installation was commissioned as Fort Kuwaaohe Army Military Reservation, consisting of 332 acres, later to be named Fort Hase, and served as a defense battalion of the Windward Coastal Artillery Command.
Construction of Naval Air Station Kaneohe Bay Commenced
Attack on Air Station
December 7th, the Japanese Navy attack the air station at 7:52 a.m., 8 minutes prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor.
The U.S. Navy decommissioned Naval Air Station Kaneohe Bay
Marine Corps Assume Control
The Marine Corps assumed control of both Fort Hase and the air station after landowner, Mr. Harold K. Castle, refused to take back the property; citing it was important to maintain a military base on the windward side of Oahu for defense and economic continuity.
U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe Bay was officially commissioned.
1960 – 1990
Succession of Marine Corps Fighters
Marine Corps Air Station was home to a succession of Marine Corps fighters including F-8 Crusader, F-4 Phantom and F/A-18 Hornet.
The Marine Corps consolidated all its installations and facilities in Hawaii under a single command, identified as Marine Corps Base Hawaii.
MCBH aligned under Marine Corps Installations Pacific, Japan.
Source: Marine Corps Base Hawaii website.
To see the history of the Blue Angels, click here.