For Want of A Home: A Historic Context for Wherry and Capehart Military Family Housing


The following is a history of solutions tested by the Department of Defense (DoD) to correct the abysmal living conditions available to military families during the early years of the Cold War. In particular, it is an analysis of the legislative, architectural and planning issues that influenced two of the larger and more influential military family housing programs in DoD history: Wherry and Capehart housing. These programs spanned from 1949-1955 and from 1955-1962, respectively, and provided nearly a quarter-million military family housing units. While these two programs were responsible for the construction of a significant number of housing units, they were only two of several military programs designed to provide housing to military families. In addition, the social and community planning concepts that influenced Wherry and Capehart housing were also illustrated in housing developed by numerous other government and private sector entities during this time period.

Historically significant buildings which are impacted by Federal projects require some form of mitigation. Sometimes this mitigation is in the form of preservation of the building itself; at the very least, mitigation is generally a very costly undertaking; the funding necessary to document Wherry and Capehart houses would deplete scarce dollars installations need to maintain the rest of their buildings. Therefore, it is the desire of the Army to study Wherry and Capehart housing in order to determine if they must be considered and treated as historically significant.

Cite this Record

For Want of A Home: A Historic Context for Wherry and Capehart Military Family Housing. United States Army Environmental Center, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland: United States Army Environmental Center. 1998 ( tDAR id: 381395) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8DB82S0

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