After the United States entered World War I in 1917 and Congress authorized the building of 16 cantonments (camps), George Bishop, thought land that Richard Respess envisioned as a major city between Baltimore and DC (the plan never got off the ground) would flourish as an installation.
"Not only was this vast land well suited for firing ranges and large maneuver areas, it was also situated equidistant between two large cities, bounded on both sides by main line railroads, and was located directly along the track of his own railway.”
After securing options or outright purchases from the original owners, the railroad company Bishop headed offered a proposal for an Army base at the village of Admiral.
On June 23, 1917, a general contract was signed for the construction of the camp. Actual construction began July 2. Within a year, the government bought more land, bringing the camp's total acreage to 9,400.
"Buildings appeared like mushrooms, oft times still surrounded by the remnants of last season's cornfield.”
The cantonment was named Camp Meade by War Department General Order 93, dated July 18, 1917, in honor of Maj. Gen. George G. Meade. Meade had led the Union forces to victory in the Battle of Gettysburg. Meade was chosen because many of the draftees trained here were from Pennsylvania, where Meade was a revered son.
We are currently offering the following pieces featuring George Bishop’s signature: