Christmas for the Troops in Virginia

In December of 1941, most US troops that were going to be involved in the war effort were still based in the continental US but due to the recent declaration of war, they were not going to be spending Christmas at home with their families. Here are a few pictures from the festivities celebrated at Camp Lee Virginia.

The panzer “Santa”, with well-filled sack of radios, books, cookies, and other gifts dear to soldiers hearts, glides up to the door of the barracks in Camp Lee’s Quartermaster Corps and it isn’t hampered by lack of snow in Virginia. Camp Lee, Virginia, Quartermaster Replacement Center. December 1941.
Just before Santa Claus leaves his “jeep-sleigh” the guard of honor stands on each side presenting arms to the Christmas visitor. Camp Lee, Virginia, Quartermaster Replacement Center. December 1941.
“Santa Claus” may find a barracks chimney too narrow and try the windows, so that’s a good place for socks and a helmet say Pvts. Kotula and Queen as they put more Army issue socks where Santa may turn into the barracks. Camp Lee, Virginia, Quartermaster Center. December 1941.
A rifle rack gains new utility as Pvts. Kotula and Queen hang their socks on rifles in the rack which is directly in the center of the squad room. “Santa will have to stumble into this, so he can’t miss our socks. Camp Lee, Virginia, Quartermaster Replacement Center. December 1941.
All Pennsylvania soldiers in Co. B of the 10th Regiment in Camp Lee’s Quartermaster Replacement Center gather to sing carols around the tree to show how men of the Keystone State demonstrate Christmas spirit. Camp Lee, Virginia. December 1941.

[Images courtesy of the US Army Center of Military Histoy.]

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Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website:

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