Thursday Doors – April 7, 2022: 1930s and 1940s Military Doors

I don’t really like venturing over to the nearby air reserve base. Most of it is closed down or just simply not there anymore; it does not look like the active base it once was. My family used to shop there all the time, and my son was born there. Those places are mostly gone, but I recently found a historical area of the base that I was able to take pictures of; I’m sharing for Dan’s Thursday Doors photo challenge. Most of these buildings were used during World War II and have been preserved. The first photo is of the doors to the base chapel, built in 1941. I couldn’t go inside, but here are more photos of the outside.

Military chapel built in 1941; captured with 50mm DSLR lens.

Base chapel revitalized and being used again; captured with 50mm DSLR lens.

Side view of base chapel in southern California; captured with 50mm DSLR lens.

Historic military chapel and bell from 1941; captured with 50mm DSLR lens.

Next to the military chapel is the old theater. It was built before WWII, and it is being used again. I am glad someone recognized the heritage and usefulness of these old buildings.

Old military theater on left and chapel on the right; captured with 50mm DSLR lens.

Military theater built in 1933; still being used today.

Military theater with old wood doors and ticket booth shows a mix of both old and more modern touches.

Some of the doors are more worn than others, and some tiles are missing, but the overall feel of the theater is nostalgic. It was open during my visit, and thankfully, they were not still having a briefing, as there was evidence of a recent visit.

Across the large grass field from the chapel and theater are the old hospital barracks and the original base hospital. I took photos quickly and not too close, because I could see airmen working inside. Glad to see they’re still using this building, too!

Original base hospital, used from 1931-1965; captured with 50mm DSLR lens.

Front door to original base hospital.

Original military hospital doors outlined in intricate details.

Hospital barracks attached to back of hospital, built in 1934, maintained similar arches and other details like the base theater.

Some of the military buildings are still true to the concrete or block style buildings that I grew up around, but this last building has whimsical arched doors and details throughout it. I found the interior doors to be more interesting that the exterior. It is also still being used today, so there’s a mixture of old with new in these photos.

Arched doors open to a long hallway in this old clubhouse, which is still being used as a grill and gathering place.

While it is sad to see so much of the base gone, I think they’ve done a decent job remembering the past, keeping historical buildings intact, and repurposing those that can be used. It was interesting to see the different styles of architecture from the 1930s and ’40s show through in military buildings here in southern California.

Published by Dawn Palmer

I am an avid nature and ecology lover and enjoy sharing my photography in my blog writings. I will often be out early in the morning or late in the evening with my camera, trying to capture the peacefulness and beauty around me.

7 thoughts on “Thursday Doors – April 7, 2022: 1930s and 1940s Military Doors

  1. Wonderful collection of doors you’ve shared, Dawn. I’m curious as to which base this is? We were stationed at Port Hueneme in late 80’s and early 90’s. Would love to see its changes today.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These are beautiful doors, particularly the arched door with the upper glass half. I am so happy these buildings have been saved from destruction and ruin. The chapel and the theater are beautiful. Your photos are excellent. Thanks for sharing these wit Thursday Doors.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! 😊 I am glad you enjoyed them. I really like the arched door too. There’s three sets of them throughout the hallway. Apparently, the general who revitalized these buildings made the old club into a museum of sorts and it’s still being used. 😎

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Beautiful architecture of historical value! Did not know that these buildings were restored and reused for base personnel. I hope other bases are doing the same. Such important history. You captured the era with fine photo lighting and angles.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! 😊 I might check out some other bases to see if it’s changed. Sometimes it’s tricky to take photos because it’s the military. I did blur out some of their markings on the buildings they’re using at March…just in case. 😎


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