Introduction Training Florida Home Front Floridian Service Impact on Florida
Florida on the Eve of War
Pearl Harbor and its Impact
Military Training in Florida
Aviation
Land Warfare
Amphibious
WAAC Training at Daytona Beach
The German Submarine Threat
Civil Defense & Patrols
Rationing & Government Effort
Scrap, Gardens & Kids' Activities
War Bonds & Women's Roles
Homegrown Armor: The Alligator
National Guard & State Guard
United States Army
Navy & Marines
Coast Guard
Army Air Force
Women on Duty
African Americans
War Heroes
War's Impact on Florida
Citrus Goes to War
Industry and War Products
Tourism During the War Years
The War Ends
How WWII Changed the State

Military Training in Florida: WAAC Training at Daytona Beach
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Largely through the efforts of Mary McLeod Bethune, who lobbied President Franklin Roosevelt directly, the Army established a major training facility for the Women's Auxiliary Army Corps (WAAC) at Daytona Beach. With the city's tourist-based economy slumping, the establishment of the facility produced much needed revenue. The presence of the base generated nearly $5 million per month for the city's economy.

The first WAAC recruits arrived in October 1942 and eventually some 20,000 women received training at Daytona Beach. The headquarters facility was established at the Wingate Building in downtown Daytona Beach. The recruits were housed initially in the Osceola Hotel and a local hospital, but additional buildings were soon leased or built by the military.

The WAACs attracted attention in Daytona Beach. Often people gathered to observe them parade down the boardwalk, and servicemen sometimes stopped on the beach to watch them exercise.

Within a year, the organization was made a full part of the Army and was re-designated as the Women's Army Corps (WAC). In early 1944, this training center at Daytona Beach was closed when the WACs moved to a larger facility at Fort Ogelthorpe, Georgia.

Florida Remembers WWII
Personnel of the Women's Army Corps lined up with vehicles for inspection at Daytona Beach -- (United States Army Women's Museum at Ft. Lee, Virginia)
 Personnel of the Women's Army Corps lined up with vehicles for inspection at Daytona Beach
(United States Army Women's Museum at Ft. Lee, Virginia)
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