Great Lakes Naval Training Station was authorized as a "training ship on land" in 1904. The base opened on July 1, 1911, and the first class of the 300 U.S. sailors graduated four months later in the grand ceremony attended by Pres. William H. Taft as guest of honor. It has since sent to the fleet over four million sailors, serving the nation through all the conflicts of the 20th century. Today Great Lakes is the sole remaining navy boot camp in the United States. Anchored by the stately Building One, the entire 43-building complex was designated as Great Lakes Naval Training Station on the National Register of Historic Places in 1986. This book, with over 200 vintage images, explores its colorful and important history.
Therese Gonzalez graduated from Beloit College in 1980 with a bachelor's degree in English literature. She then embarked on a 20-year navy career that took her around the world from California, to Iceland, to Japan, to Washington, D.C., and finally to Great Lakes Naval Training Station in North Chicago. Since she retired from the navy as a lieutenant commander in 2001, Gonzalez has continued to work on base as museum specialist of the Great Lakes Naval Museum.