Bouse, AZ can't really claim it's famous for its military history, BUT that is only because Bouse was the location of a 'Top Secret' military camp, so extremely top secret, it was not listed with the dozen other training camps and to this day, historian/authors often miss the area when writing about the camp. Even troop movement was extremely restricted -- once in Camp Bouse, there was no chance of transferring out and they were sworn to secrecy about the location.
‘Sandy’ is the M60 Patton Tank, with her 105 mm main gun, is now residing at one end of ‘Monument Row’ located on the corner of Highway 72 and Main Street as you travel through Bouse. ‘Sandy’ stands there to honor the tank battalions that made up those at Camp Bouse Memorial.
All of the 9,000-plus troops who spent time at Camp Bouse were sworn to secrecy about the project. Soldiers weren’t allowed to be transferred out of the camp, their movements were restricted and any soldier caught leaking information was guaranteed imprisonment. All that’s left of Camp Bouse today are several concrete building foundations and walkways, a large reservoir and stone markers left in the desert by units that were stationed there.
Come visit! The first full weekend in February,
The Bouse Chamber of Commerce hosts an annual Camp Bouse Dedication at the tank memorial site on Highway 72 Saturday, and a Camp Bouse tour & picnic Sunday. Bring your ATV or 4-wheel drive and join the fun.
On display at the Bouse Museum is the model for the Canal Defense Light (CDL) Turret that was built by Marty Silva. Marty's father served with the 738th Tank Battalion, Company B, at Camp Bouse. As he was researching information on the story of the "Secret Weapon" called the Canal Defense Light, Marty took notes from John K. Brier, Commander of Company B, and formulated his plans and drawings.
"Marty sought to record, preserve and pass on the history made by his father and those 5000 troops at Camp Bouse and those at other training camps and battles in WWII."
Marty spent seven months building this model of the CDL turret that was retrofitted upon a Grant Leaflet Tank back in 1943. The model is built to spec to show that it works. Marty donated the model to the Bouse Museum and it was delivered on February 9, 2012, just in time for the annual Camp Bouse Days Ceremony.
"The last known surviving version of the British CDL Turret mounted upon an M3 Grant tank is located in India at an Amoured Corps Museum"
extract from " Bouse Arizona - Then & Now"
by Renee Townsend & Carolyn Brown 2012
(Click book image to purchase)
‘Monument Row’ was started by the Bouse Chamber of Commerce in conjunction with the Bouse Communities VFW Post 2357 and American Legion Post 46 in 1996.
Over the years additional monuments have been erected and now numbers 11 sepewrate ‘Historic Markers’. 2016 will mark the 20th annual celebration.
It is only thanks to the support of the ECV Lost Dutchman Chapter 5917 that the memorial markers along ‘Monument Row’ were able to be placed. The Chamber of Commerce thanks them for there dedication and help. For a history of this group CLICK HERE
The community of Bouse in Arizona has welcomed this group on numerous occasions now ... in each instance they have built and dedicated plaques and memorials in remembrance of those who served at Camp Bouse.
Located on Highway 72 (on the corner of Main St) the memorial was started by the Bouse Chamber of Commerce in conjunction with the VFW Post 2357 and American Liegion Post 46 in 1996. Over the years additional monuments have been erected. 2016 will mark the 20th annual celebration.
740th Tank Battalion - Daredevil Tankers Memorial
The 554th Ordnance - Heavy Maintenance Company (Tanks) — 9th Tank Group CDL Project
738th Medium Tank Battalion, Special World War II — 1943 – 1945
739th Tank Battalion (SP) (ME)
748th Tank Batallion - “The Rhino’s”
526th A. I. B. - Canal Defense Light Project — Desert Training Center - California – Arizona Maneuver Area
George L. Wendt - Headquarters Company — 526 Armored Infantry Battalion
In Memory of Eight Ball - Morale Officer Equus asinus