Saturday, April 2, 2011


This is coolbert:

The Master Builder!

Until only yesterday, the name of this man was unknown to me.

An American four-star general during the time of the Second World War [WW2] whose importance was vital to the war effot in a manner not even understood at the time or even now.

BUT NOT a combat soldier.

Rather, an engineer, a manager, a director of "works" projects associated with the war effort. A MASTER BUILDER!

Brehon Burke Somervell.

The Master Builder.

From the time of the ancient Egyptians [3,000 B.C.] - - that person in charge of construction projects, those projects, again, on the massive, the prodigious, the colossal scale. Unequalled!!

"In one person, the master builder, there existed the following":

I. "Responsibility for design"

II. "Responsibility for construction"

III. "Complete and total authority on the building site"

That term Master Builder the significance of which is not taken lightly - - a person in charge of "creation" on such a grand scale beyond that of the normal individual - - almost "Godlike" in character!

"MASTER BUILDER - - Taking the word master in the sense of the one possessed of the highest degree of skill and knowledge the epithet 'Master Builder' is used sometimes as a name of the Grand Architect of the Universe [GOD]"

"Brehon Burke Somervell . . . a General in the United States Army and Commanding General of the Army Service Forces in World War II. As such he was responsible for the U.S. Army's logistics."

Somervell - - an engineer by training and education almost without exception [?] during his career involved in supply, engineering, logistics operations, construction projects, from pre-World War One [WW1] onward.

Both in the military and civilian sectors, occupying positions of ever-increasing responsibility and authority, and always succeeding in a manner without peer, highly respected - - A MASTER - - a "go-to" man of the highest repute!

The career of Somervell most profound - - the accomplishments many - - to include:

Prior to WW1 during the punitive expedition to Mexico in search of Pancho Villa:

* "depot manager at Columbus, New Mexico - - 1916, the main logistical base of the expedition." - - 1916.

* "working on roads and as a supply officer." - - 1916.

And during the Great War [WW1]:

* "He took charge of refugee funds and dispensed $1,000,000 to help American citizens to get back home." - - 1917

Oversaw construction of:

* "a munitions dump at Mehun-sur-Yèvre" - - 1918

* "an advanced depot and regulating station at Is-sur-Tille." - - 1918

Between the two wars:

* "a survey of shipping and navigation on the Rhine River" - - 1919

* "a special study of navigation on the Rhine and Danube Rivers" - - 1920

* "an economic survey of Turkey" - - 1933

* "the Cross Florida Barge Canal." - - 1935 [work on the canal never done or completed!]

And during the era of the Great Depression, associated with CIVILIAN WORKS PROJECTS, THE WPA!

* "From 1936 to 1940 Somervell was head of the Works Project Administration in New York City, where he was responsible for a series of Great Depression relief works, including the construction of LaGuardia Airport."

And during the time of the U.S. military build-up [1940-1941]:

* "Somervell became head of the Construction Division of the Quartermaster Corps" - - 1940

* "constructing new facilities to hold stores and munitions" - - 1941

* "As head of the Construction Division of the Quartermaster Corps in 1941, Somervell took charge of the construction of a series of camps to house the large numbers of draftees who entering into the Army."

[during WW2 the armed forces of the United States increased in size from 100,000 troops to 15 million men under arms by the end of the war!!]

* "he was responsible for a work force 485,000 people employed on military construction projects." - - 1941

* Oversaw construction of the Pentagon. With Leslie Groves as Chief of Staff [CoS].

And from 1942 until the end of the war was the chief logistician of the army, a most senior position of great authority.

"From 1942 to 1945, Somervell commanded the Army Service Forces, the logistical arm of the United States Army."

It can safely [?] be said that projects of the magnitude and scope as seen during the Depression era or during WW2 will NEVER be seen again?

"Works" on such a massive scale having a military application is a thing of the past, passe' Too expensive and not in keeping with the trends of modern warfare?

A Master Builder of the stature of Brehon Somervell wielding authority and responsibility on such a enormous scale both in the civilian and military sector is today an unheard of phenomenon and we have to look to history for such examples. Too bad!


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