Looking between a pair of barracks at Lincoln - Courtesy of James Villa
Lincoln's Barracks - Housing the force
In 1952 as Lincoln Air Force Base activated, the Air Force understood of course the necessity to house its airmen. This was a time period where off-base housing, let alone housing nationwide period, was at a premium. Left over reminants of World War II housing was either insufficient or claimed by outside interests (specifically the University of Nebraska's role at Huskerville housing complex, itself formerly a hospital for Lincoln AAF).
Some housing was, and became more available in the city itself. However many men stationed at Lincoln were looking at their committment here as temporary and were less inclined to rent or even purchase housing in the city.
In 1952, a number of barracks were planned and built by the next year to house mostly enlisted personnel at the base. A Bachelor's Officer's Quarters building, Visiting Officers Barracks, Visiting Airmen's Quarters and Bachelor's NCO Quarters were also constructed and in all 27 were built. Enlisted quarters tended to be towards the southern edge of the base whereas officer's quarters were mostly in the central portion.
Usually these barracks tended to house mostly personnel from one unit (say the 551st Strategic Missile Squadron enlisted personnel were in one, 818th Transportation in another and so on). Two men usually were assigned to each room with communal bathrooms, orderly rooms and day rooms. Day rooms offered some forms of light recreation as in books, decks of cards and later televisions. Heating was provided via Lincoln AFB's steamlines that ran across the base like a gigantic radiator.
These buildings stood on at the base for a while after it deactivated and were all torn down or removed in the period between 1966 and the early 1980s. Once providing housing when the base was utilized as a Job Corps center, not a single building remains.
To Be Continued...
Have any interesting stories about your time in the barracks? Contact us at LAFB@lincolnafb.org