On June 1, 1942, Alfred Masters became the first African American to enlist in the U.S. Marine Corps. By August of 1942, 900 African Americans were on their way to Montford Point, North Carolina.44...
In June of 1941, President Franklin Roosevelt issued an Executive Order establishing the Fair Employment Practices Commission to aid in the prevention of discrimination against African Americans in...
For centuries, African-American contributions to society went completely unnoticed, until Carter G. Woodson, a Harvard-educated, African-American man began celebrating “Negro History Week” in February...
Mar 09 2021
Montford Point Marines
A group of the black volunteers in their dress uniforms, May 1943.
78th Anniversary of Montford Point Marines
Lance Cpl. Isaiah Gomez
Houston Shinal, the previous national monument director for the National Montford Point Marine Association, conducts an interview about the Montford Point Marines at the Montford Point Marines Memorial in Jacksonville, North Carolina, Aug 17, 2020.
Lance Cpl. Christian Ayers
A wall of stars representing the approximately 20,000 African-Americans that went through Marine Corps boot camp at Montford Point stands at the Montford Point Marines Memorial in Jacksonville, North Carolina, Aug. 26, 2020.
Montfort Point Marines Ceremony Aug. 22
Cpl. Alexia Lythos
James L. Spann, a veteran that served at Montford Point, poses for a photo at the Montford Point Marines Memorial on Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, Aug. 22, 2019.
On This Day
National Archives Photo
Marines of the first African-American platoon pose in this undated photo. From left are Mortimer A. Cox, Arnold R. Bostick, Edgar R. Davis, Jr., Gilbert H. "Hashmark" Johnson and Edgar R. Huff (the platoon’s drill instructors,) and Charles E. Allen.
Marine Corps Cpl. Edgar R. Huff drills a platoon of recruits at Montford Point Camp, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. He enlisted in the Marine Corps in June 1942.
Marine Corps Cpl. Edgar R. Huff inspects a weapon at Montford Point Camp, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. He enlisted in the Marine Corps in June 1942.
I’ll take the Marines: Montford Point Marines Hymn Lyrics By - USMC Gunnery Sgt. LaSalle R. Vaughn
Retired Gunnery Sgt. LaSalle R. Vaughn in his U.S. Marine Corps uniform at the funeral of his best friend and next-door neighbor, retired Marine Master Sgt. Frederick Drake, in November 2010.
2012 Veterans Day Parade in New York City
Cpl. Bryan Nygaard
NYC Montfort point Marine association marches in the 2012 New York City Veterans Day Parade.
Lance Cpl. Kris Daberkoe
Cpl. Arvin Lou Ghazio, USMC, gives judo instructions to Pvt. Ernest C. Jones, April 1943.
A platoon of black "boot recruits" listen to their drill instructor, Sgt. Gilbert Hubert Johnson, whose job is to turn them into finished Marines at Montford Point, Camp Lejeune, N.C., April 1943.
Two recruits in a light tank during training in mechanized warfare at Montford Point, Camp Lejeune, N.C., April 1943.
Cpl. Tia Dufour
From left, J.T. Inge, U.S. Marine Lt. Gen. Terry Robling, the deputy commandant for aviation; Barnett Person; and Lt. Gen. Willie J. Williams, the director of Marine Corps Staff, pose for a photo during the breakfast in honor of Montford Marines at Crawford Hall at Marine Barracks Washington, Washington, D.C., Aug. 26, 2011.
Marine Sgt. F. Smit and Cpl. S. Brown open a coconut to get a cool drink on Saipan, June 1944.
Marines move through the trenches on the beach during the Battle of Peleliu, Sept. 15, 1944.
Photo by Sgt. L. A. Wilson
Marines receiving instruction in the demolition course at Montford Point, Camp Lejeune, N.C., during intensive combat training in preparation for action in the Pacific, February 1945.
Black Marines on the beach at Iwo Jima are, from left to right, Pfc.'s Willie J. Kanody, Elif Hill and John Alexander, March 1945.
Lance Cpl. Paul Peterson
Cpl. Arvin L. Ghazlo demonstrates to a bayonet class a technique for disarming the enemy. Breaking a tradition of 167 years, the Marine Corps started enlisting blacks, June 1, 1942.
Mar 09 2016
A group of the black volunteers in their dress uniforms, May 1943. Although a dress uniform was not a part of the regular equipment, most of the black Marines spend $54 out of their pay for what is generally considered the snappiest uniform in the armed services. (Photo by Roger Smith/Released)