|This picture and the picture above are of 'The Plain' at West Point, NY where most pictures of West Point are taken. At the center of the buildings you can see the entrance to the 'Mess Hall' which was a dining hall where all the cadets sat at the same time (about 400 tables with ten at each table) with 'waiters' bringing out the food to be served 'family style'. To each side of the Mess Hall are barracks which are six stories tall. The rooms are pretty much dorm style rooms with two to four beds per room with the rooms facing out and a hall way and common rooms (like showers and toilets) in the center and then more rooms on the other side. Above the Mess Hall were a couple of floors of academic class rooms. The Mess Hall had six wings and you can only see the main entrance which was at the end of one of the six wings. On the hill above is the Protestant Chapel.||=0=|
|People would often tell me how lucky I was to go to school with such beautiful surroundings which surprised me as that didn't seem the case to me. Of course the views of the Plain is a public area which does look very nice. However, cadets see very little of the public areas. We spent most of our time in the closed areas and this is a picture from one of the quads. Here you can see one of the wings of the Mess Hall at the center of this picture (would have been along the left side of the pictures above). Just beyond that on the right would be the back side of the barracks that were along the left above the above pictures. There is another set of barracks on the left and on the far right is the only historical barracks (from about 1900 I believe) which we never went to much except the basement which had 'Tony's Pizza', our regular alternative fare on weekends and such. If you notice, there is nothing green anywhere (which corresponded with the decor in the rooms as well) except a few splotches of military olive drab. For some reason I developed a distaste for grey and olive drab. If you look closely you can see cadets 'marching' the area along the left (as a punishment on weekends and sometimes afternoons) on the left and trucks delivering clean laundry and picking up dirty.||=0=|
|To the left of the picture above would be another set of six story barracks (fully enclosing the area) and this picture would be of the back side of those barracks. This is the path I would take from Old South (where Company D-1 had their barracks) to the Gym for Physical Education, winter Physical Tests, and many indoors intramural sports competitions. It would go down and to the right behind the loading docks for the kitchen (and under the back wing of the mess hall. As expected the loading docks would get pretty stinky with the smell of trash and waste food. On left in this picture would be the dental clinic where Dee worked as a dental hygienist. This was a surprisingly pretty view (perhaps too out of the way for them to muck with) with the Protestant chapel up the hill.||=0=|
|If you went in the opposite direction from the picture above you would pass Old South (with a smaller area) on your right and come through the break in the buildings on the right here. The 'back' side of Old South is the rightmost building shown here. Old South had divisions which were really sets of four rooms per floor with stairs and halls joining them and four stories high. In the basement were the showers. Each room would have a sink and mirror. Rooms would have two to four beds (two was norm except for freshman or plebe rooms which were often more crowded). Old South was shaped in a U with the around an area which faced the area shown two pictures above. It was the home of the second battalion of the first regiment, which would be companies D-1, E-1, and F-1. D-1 was in the rooms along the side shown here and my room was often on the second or third floor of the closest rooms in this picture. The bottom floor of this wing faced the road and was the Cadet Restaurant where uppperclassmen could go with visitors. Beyond Old South and a little further up is New South, home of companies A-1, B-1 and C-1, with the newer style barracks. The first floor of the wing along the road was the Cadet Store where they would sell uniform items and such. Along the right side of the road is Mahan Hall (not shown), the acedemic Headquarters (I only went there twice to meet with the Academic Board or heads of the acadmeic departments) and the new Science Building, both academic buildings.||=0=|
|Further along the road above is this view of the Science Building. This had been the main road through West Point, but further along on this road there is a split where most traffic is diverted under the Science building.||=0=|
|This is a view from this road which goes behind the academic buildings shown here on the right. They are the Library (closest), Mahan Hall, and the Academic Headquarters. On the right is Thayer Hall. It used to be a Riding Hall but the interior was gutted and filled with academic class rooms and a parkling lot was put on the roof. When I was there they had theatres where they showed movies before the new Student Center (Eisenhower Hall) opened. The Computer Center was also in the basement there. There were a couple of bridges over this road so that cadets could easily get to their classes in Thayer Hall.||=0=|
|Just beyond the Plain was some athletic fields and then Trophy Point. shown above. Trophy Point was quite pretty with some nice views of the Hudson river. Below the Plain and further along was Eisenhower Hall (built with red brick exterior as it was much cheaper, but kept further down the hill toward the river so that it wasn't visible from the Plain to distract from the grey granite architecture). Further down and right next to the river was a playing field where they held some intramurals and many of the physical fitness tests. When I first arrived at West Point they gave all of the New Cadets a physical fitness test. Of the 1400 or so cadets taking the test, I finished last and I wasn't last by a little, but by a lot. Yikes! They throw people out for physical fitness, so I spent a lot of time running my first year to get into adequate fitness. Many of the test runs were made down there and at the end I would sit by this stream and recover. I really liked the stream (and hated the tests).||=0=|
This page was last updated on December 22, 2007.