Camp Logan, Zion, Illinois


From Lake County, Illinois History:

Camp Logan was located in the very northeastern tip of the state, about an hour north of Chicago along the Lake Michigan shoreline. It served as a training range for the Illinois National Guard from 1892 to the early 1970s.

Camp Logan was named for General John Alexander Logan who commanded 31st Illinois Volunteer Regiment in 1861:

John Alexander Logan

John Alexander Logan

The land was purchased by the IL State Legislature in1892 and by the 1900s Camp Logan included a headquarters office, four regimental barracks, range office, mess hall, kitchen and arsenal.

Camp Logan Flag_courtesy Westerman_watermark

Camp Logan circa 1900

Regular Army marksmen from Fort Sheridan preferred the rifle range at CampLogan over their own facilities. Naval Militia from the Naval Training Center Great Lakes also utilized this facility.

Camp Logan Naval Rifle Range_LCDM 99-7-6_watermark

Camp Logan Rifle Range

Camp Logan Rifle Range_courtesy Westerman_watermark

US Naval Rifle Range at Camp Logan.

Camp Logan Firing Line_courtesy Westerman_watermark

Camp Logan Rifle Range.

Before World War I, the Illinois National Guard put great emphasis on rifle marksmanship. It was one of the few Guard activities that was judged by strict Army regulations.

Training at the camp included handling of small weapons, tactical maneuvers, and rifle marksmanship. Soldiers performed a variety of marksmanship scenarios on targets located from 100 to 1,000 yards oriented toward Lake Michigan. In 1902, over 6,000 soldiers attended the camp and expended over 640,000 rounds of ammunition.

Two key innovations were incorporated into the Camp Logan range, the echelon target system and Aiken targets. For more on the inventor of the Aiken targets, see my post on Illinois National Guardsman, Robert Aiken.

Corp. Rex Coniglio, Lieut. D.E. Zealand, and Private M. Cherion  using 3-inch trench mortar at Camp Logan.  Circa 1937.

Corp. Rex Coniglio, Lieut. D.E. Zealand, and Private M. Cherion
using 3-inch trench mortar at Camp Logan.
Circa 1937.

Col. George Marshall was assigned to Camp Logan from 1933 to 1937 as the head instructor.

The camp was closed in 1974 as increased restrictions on training due to the increasing civilian population around the base, limited the camp’s usefulness.

One of the remaining structures at the Camp Logan National Guard Rifle Range Historic District.  Photo courtesy of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

One of the remaining structures at the Camp Logan National Guard Rifle Range Historic District.
Photo courtesy of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

Now Camp Logan is called the North Unit of Illinois Beach State Park.

It’s a bit of interesting history located where I grew up.

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4 Comments

Filed under army, ARMY TRAINING, Around the web, history, veterans, war

4 responses to “Camp Logan, Zion, Illinois

  1. Old AF Sarge

    Excellent post Spill!

  2. dagamore

    great post, one questions what is a “echelon target system “?