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This Week in Seabee History (November 4 – November 10)

Consolidated by Dr. Frank A. Blazich Jr., Historian, Naval History and Heritage Command

Operation Deep Freeze II Seabees prepare an amphibious tracker supply convoy for a trip from Little America to South Pole Station, 6 November 1956. (Coutesy of Naval History and Heritage Command)

November 4

1942: Camp Peary established in Williamsburg, Virginia, named in honor of Rear Admiral Robert E. Peary, Civil Engineer Corps (CEC), U.S. Navy.

1944: 6th NCR inactivated.


November 5

1945: 9th Naval Construction Brigade inactivated.

1971: Seabee Teams 1019 and 1020 were disestablished. Seabee Teams 1021 and 1022 were established and organized with the 31st NCR Port Hueneme, California.

2004: Rear Adm. Robert L. Phillips, CEC, USN, relieved Rear Adm. Charles R. Kubic, CEC, USN, as Commander, First Naval Construction Division at Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek, Norfolk, Virginia.

2010: Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 133 and sailors from the guided-missile destroyer USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110) unloaded supplies to be given to veterans during the VA Stand-Down in Biloxi, Miss. The VA Stand-Down is a one-day event providing free food, clothing, health screenings, Social Security benefits counseling and other services to homeless veterans in the Gulf Coast area. (Courtesy of U.S. Navy Seabee Museum)

November 6

1942: 40th NCB (Naval Construction Battalion) commissioned at Camp Endicott, Davisville, Rhode Island.


November 7

1971: Seabees of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 5 arrived at their homeport of Port Hueneme, California. This was the last full battalion to depart from Vietnam. Their departure marked the end of a significant chapter in the Seabee effort in Vietnam, an effort which began at Chu Lai in 1965 and resulted in the construction of approximately $200 million worth of facilities in support of U.S. forces.

2012: Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11, from Gulfport, Miss., loaded a bulldozer full of debris that was caused by Hurricane Sandy during to relief efforts in Staten Island, New York, ahead of a forecasted storm. NMCB-11 is operating under the U.S. Northern Command Defense Support of Civil Authorities mission, working closely with civil authorities and the Federal Emergency Management Agency following the destruction caused by Hurricane Sandy. (Courtesy of U.S. Navy Seabee Museum)

November 8

1942: Seabees encountered their first combat in the European theater of operations when they landed with the assault forces on the beaches of North Africa. The Seabees built facilities at Oran, Casablanca, Safi, and Fedala. Later, as the American Army moved across Africa toward Tunisia and the final showdown with the Germans, the Seabees built staging and training areas along the coast as far as Arzeu. On the west coast of Africa, the Seabees built a huge Naval Air Station in Port Lyautey, Morocco and supplementary air and supply bases at Agadir and Casablanca. Through these later ports poured materials, men, and equipment needed for the coming invasion of Sicily and the Italian mainland.

1944: 13th Naval Construction Regiment (NCR) inactivated.

1945: 20th Naval Construction Battalion (NCB) inactivated on Okinawa.

1969: Seabee Teams 1113 and 1114 transferred to NMCB 3 to become Seabee Teams 0315 and 0316, respectively, due to disestablishment of NMCB 11.

1971: Seabee Teams 1021 and 1022 commenced Seabee Team Training.

2011: Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 40, defended their camp in a simulated firefight as part of their final evaluation during a training exercise at Forth Hunter Liggett, California. NMCB 40 was participating in its final field training exercise and evaluation before their upcoming U.S. Pacific Command deployment in November. The battalion was scheduled for decommission at the conclusion of their deployment in September 2012. (Courtesy of U.S. Navy Seabee Museum)

November 9

1945: 26th Special NCB inactivated on Oahu, Hawaii.

1965: NMCB 4 transferred to Commander, Naval Construction Battalions, U.S. Pacific Fleet (COMCBPAC) from Commander, Naval Construction Battalions, U.S. Atlantic Fleet (COMCBLANT).

1970: NMCB 3 main body flights consisting of three passenger flights and two cargo flights departed Port Hueneme, California and arrived at Camp Haskins South, Republic of Vietnam (RVN).

1971: 3rd Naval Construction Brigade officially disestablished.


November 10

1945: 137th NCB inactivated on Okinawa. 16th Special NCB inactivated on Guam.


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This Week in Seabee History (October 21 – 27)

Consolidated by Dr. Frank A. Blazich Jr., Historian, Naval History and Heritage Command