The Military in San Diego
No city is as proud of its military heritage as San Diego, known as “Navy Town, USA.” Congress also has designated San Diego as “the Birthplace of Naval Aviation.” However, its community fabric reflects a more diverse and tightly woven relationship with our nation’s defense. Over the past century, the city has invented and then reinvented itself in response to shifting world affairs and national priorities. It began with a successful campaign to become a West Coast Navy base in the early 1900s. By the 1930s, military aircraft manufacturing drove economic development. After explosive growth in World War II, San Diego emerged as an established military metropolis. At the dawn of the Cold War, San Diego recast itself as a home for Cold War research and development and defense contractors. Today, San Diego is an internationally renowned defense science and technology development center, a city in which one in four jobs and fully 50 percent of regional domestic product are defense related. Like no other city in America, San Diego has grown from a remote military presidio outpost to become a preeminent Pacific powerhouse.
Paperback. 144 pages. Contains 200 black and white images.
Author Scott McGaugh is a San Diego native who has written several military books. McGaugh served as co-curator of the San Diego History Center’s Presidio to Pacific Powerhouse, an exhibition focusing on the unique relationship between San Diego and the US military. He also is the founding marketing director of the USS Midway Museum in San Diego.