Welcome to the Naval Air Station Jacksonville history section!
Here you will find considerable information pertaining to the base and the many changes it has gone through since its establishment in 1940.
To begin, there is a wonderful chronology, starting in1907, when the land where NAS Jacksonville is today was originally purchased for military use. Originally known as Black Point, Florida National Guard troops started arriving in June 1909; followed by the U.S. Army (which renamed the site “Camp Joseph A. Johnston” also home to the second largest rifle range in the United States) in October 1917; and then turned back over to the Florida National Guard finally in 1926 (which renamed the site “Camp Clifford J.R.Foster.”) This chronology is quite detailed and gives a rich history of the changes the site and the base has gone through during it’s time on the First Coast.
Another link gives a complete listing of every Commanding Officer the station has had, with the dates of command.
Our aircraft have undergone many evolutions as well throughout the years. From the J2F Grumman Duck, the first plane assigned to the station, to the newer MH-60 Romeo and P-8A Poseidon, NAS Jacksonville has been host to numerous aircraft over its many years since commissioning. Click on the Aircraft Photos link to see a visual history of Naval Aviation. Also included is a link showing all the squadrons that have been assigned to the station.
In addition to the operational aircraft, an Aircraft Static Display area in Heritage Park has many restored historical aircraft available for viewing. Conveniently located near the Yorktown Avenue entrance, this park is a popular spot for visitors and families. The newest addition will be an EA-6B Prowler, painted in the Centennial of Naval Aviation paint scheme, which will be placed in the park during the summer of 2012.
A detailed section on the Naval Aviator who formed and was the first flight leader of the Blue Angels is located under the First Blue Angel link. The Blue Angels are world famous for their daring aerial maneuvers, and were established at NAS Jacksonville under the command of R.M. “Butch” Voris. His biography, as well as early pictures of the unit, can be found here.
NAS Jacksonville has endured a number of changes through the years. NAS Jacksonville was originally commissioned as a pilot training base. It quickly developed into what amounts to a small town containing a hospital, restaurants, churches, boat ramps, as well as gyms and a golf course. Several photos showing the progression of the base can be seen in the Building Photos section.
We hope you enjoy our site!