Marine Corps Base Quantico
Quantico Station (its Census Bureau name designation) straddles Prince William and Stafford counties, in Virginia, and serves as the primary training, and research and development, location for The Marine Corps, the Federal Bureau of Investigation Academy, and the Drug Enforcement Administration. It is also the site of the Marine Corps Brig. The name “Quantico” is derived from the Native American tribe, the Pawtowmacks, and translates roughly to “by the large stream,” in reference to the Potomac River, which flanks the 100 square mile base to the east. Historically, the site had been a port along the river route to accommodate tobacco shipping and miscellaneous transport. Although Quantico was a naval base in the Revolutionary War, the Marine Corps’ presence dates back to 1816. The current Marine Corps Systems Command is the former site of a Confederate Army gun battery in use during the Civil War.
During the Reconstruction Era, the region featured the railroad in addition to river passage. Railroading converted the town into a major inland thoroughfare, connecting it to eastern city centers. The confluence of several railroad lines furthered this expansion. Quantico evolved into a fishery and shipyard, but hadn’t yet begun in its current role as a military base until commissioned as a Marine Barracks in 1917, concurrent with World War One. As of World War Two, the federal government expanded Quantico by over 50,000 acres for use in training maneuvers.