The base was actually first the location of the Savannah Municipal Airport, which was opened in 1929. Renamed the Hunter Municipal Airfield in May 1940 in honor of Lieutenant Colonel Frank O’Driscoll Hunter, its name was changed to Hunter Army Air Base in 1941. During the 1940s, Hunter Army Airfield served as a training place for light bomber and dive bomber groups. In 1950, it was transferred to Air Force control and was renamed Hunter Air Force Base.
During the next few decades, it served as a base for many bombers. In 1958, a B-47E was forced to drop a nuclear payload into the Savannah River. It never detonated, but the bomb was never recovered. In 1967, the base returned to Army control.
Soon after, the headquarters of the Army Aviation School Element moved from Fort Stewart to Hunter Army Airfield. Closed briefly in the 1970s, Hunter Army Airfield plays a big role in the Army’s plans for rapid response because of the large runway and deep water ports available.