Oregon National Guard, Baker City, Baker County, Oregon

The Old Armory

     The Old Armory building, built in the late 1890's on the corner of Fourth and Broadway, when the National Guard was active during the Spanish American War, hosted a variety of community activities, just as does the present armory.  Here a "Slaughter Sale" of a mercantile company is about to happen with "Entire stock to be sold."  Employees of the business selling out accompany goods, display cases and boxes to the sale.

Note: Thought trailer holding people was Ellis Transfer

McCord Picture Collection, Baker City Library

Armory Hall, NE corner of 4th and Broadway streets, was used by the local Militia.  but the ostrich-plumed rank here looks more like a fraternal Organization.  Building behind right is the Baptist Church.  Around 1890.

Baker County Military History

     The first military unit in Eastern Oregon was organized in Union County, when Company A Oregon Volunteers was formed on June 29, 1877.  They served until July 31, 1877, as a protective force for the eastern bor�der of the State at the time trouble started with Chief Joseph and the Nez Perc�, Some members of this unit were undoubtedly from Baker County.

     Baker County's first military unit was formed on March 22, 1889, when Company F, 3rd Oregon Infantry, Oregon National Guard, was mustered in at what was then known as Baker City. On April 10, 1892, a new role came to the National Guard � that of providing support and assistance to civil authorities. On that day, Company F of the 3rd Regiment in Baker, was called upon to prevent the lynching of two prisoners arrested for murder and held at Vale. The company performed its mission successfully without bloodshed or violence.

     Company F was in existence until, October 16, 1896, at which time it was disbanded. During the Spanish-American War, Baker mustered two units into service. On June 22, 1898, Company A, 3rd Oregon Infantry, was mustered in, to be followed a month later by Light Battery B. Neither unit was called into Federal Service, Company A was disbanded on May 3,1912.

      Although numerous Baker County men enlisted and served in the Armed Forces during World War I, no National Guard unit was organized until March 24, 1924, when Com�pany F, 162nd Infantry, was organized. On May 19, 1924, the unit was re-designated Company F, I 86th Infantry, and remained as such until January, 1968, when it was desig�nated as an Armored Cavalry Unit and remains as such as this is being written in 1986.
     On September 16, 1940, the unit, under the command of Capt. Philo Anderson, was inducted into Federal Service and moved out to Ft. Lewis, Washington, where the rest of the 41st Infantry Division were stationed. They commenced training for what was to be their war-time mission. In May, 1942, the Division sailed overseas, arriving in Melbourne, Australia, for more training. This Division was the first National Guard unit to be sent to the South Pacific Area.

     After training near Melbourne, Company F left by rail and truck for Rockhampton on the northeastern coast of Australia. In December of 1942, they again embarked for New Guin�ea, where they participated in both the Papu�an and New Guinea campaigns. As American forces proceeded north, the Baker Unit also moved, nearly always within the battle zone. After helping to take Biak Island, they moved into the Philippine Campaign. At the end of the war, Company F, with the rest of the 41st Infantry Division, was waiting for orders for a jump-off attack against Japan proper. The use of the atomic bomb precluded the necessi�ty for this attack. (CW2 Ray C Dielman. AUS Retired)

     Information was taken from the Oregon Blue Books and information furnished by the Adjutant General's Office in Salem.



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