By Don Robbins, Staff Writer U.S. Army Garrison-HawaiiJuly 13, 2009
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii -- The installation commemorated its 100th anniversary with a ceremony during the Fourth of July Spectacular on Sills Field at Schofield Barracks.
Military and elected officials unveiled the centennial plaque, which states Schofield Barracks has been placed on the National Register of Historic places.
The plaque will be permanently mounted in front of the Tropic Lightning Museum and is in recognition of the post's 100 years of service to the United States of America.
Kenneth Hays, garrison architectural historian, said the listing means Schofield is of "national significance in the history of America," meeting the criteria of events and architecture.
The nomination was prepared through a two-year process designed to coincide with the centennial, and was submitted by the Army. The designation means the barracks' properties will be provided consideration when renovated to meet the Secretary of Interiors' standards for historic properties, Hays said.
Although he could not attend the centennial ceremony, U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Akaka said in a written statement he recognized the lasting influence that the U.S. Army installation has had in "shaping the future of our country, and the world."
The post was named after a former Secretary of War: John McAllister Schofield. The barracks were described by James Jones, author of From Here to Eternity, as "the most beautiful army post the U.S. has or ever had."
"Schofield has become an enduring symbol of the very freedom that many Americans stationed here have fought for and some even given the ultimate sacrifice to protect," wrote Akaka in the statement.
Schofield has been the home of the 25th Infantry Division, "Tropic Lightning," since 1941, as well as the command headquarters for U. S. Army-Hawaii (USARHAW).
It has served as a critical post and strategic home base for many important operations, including distinguished service of the Tropic Lightning Division in three major U.S. conflicts during the past century: World War II, Korea and Vietnam. "Schofield now retains an integral role in supporting United States military interests around the world," wrote Akaka.
During the centennial ceremony, Lt. Gov. James R. "Duke" Aiona offered his appreciation for Soldiers and their families on behalf of Gov. Linda Lingle and the State of Hawaii.
State Rep. Corinne W. L. Ching, District 27, presented the Army with a special certificate in honor of the Schofield Barracks Centennial. Accepting the certificate on behalf of all Soldiers and families who have served on Schofield Barracks was Col. Matthew Margotta, commander, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii.
The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of cultural resources worthy of preservation. It is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect historic and archeological resources.
Properties listed in the register include districts, sites, buildings, structures and objects that are significant in American history, architecture, archeology, engineering and culture.