Aberdeen Proving Ground, which is in Aberdeen, Maryland, is the Army’s oldest active proving ground. It was established in 1917, six months after the US entered World War I.
Its location let the Army test weapons near the shipping and industrial centers that existed then. APG is home to Edgewood Arsenal which performs chemical research, including the disposal of toxins. Between 21,000 and 22,000 people work at APG, which makes it the largest employer in Harford County. They are a mix of soldiers, contract workers, and civilian employees working for the Department of the Army.
Over two thousand people live on the premises. They enjoy such benefits as a credit union, the APG Federal Credit Union, which serves eligible people in Cecil and Harford Counties. Children attend area public schools, as there are no schools on APG premises.
Fort Detrick is a U.S. Army Medical Command center in Frederick, Maryland. It was built in 1931 and it was called “Detrick Field” after the World War I flight surgeon Major Frederick L. Detrick. It was originally a small airport and later became a training facility for pilots. In 1943, the facility was renamed “Camp Detrick” and became the home of the U.S. Army Biological Warfare Laboratories (USBWL). Camp Detrick, which was renamed Fort Detrick in 1956, housed the USBWL until President Nixon had it shut down in 1969.
It is currently home to the National Interagency Biodefense Campus (NIBC), National Interagency Confederation for Biological Research (NICBR), National Cancer Institute-Frederick (NCI-Frederick), and the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC), with its bio-defense agency, the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID). As of 2008, around 7,900 people worked at Fort Detrick, which is the largest employer in Frederick. It does offer housing. There are no schools at Fort Detrick itself, so children attend area schools. An organization called Child, Youth and School Services (CYSS) helps employees chose the best school for their child.
Fort Meade began life in 1917 as a training camp called “Camp Annapolis Junction.” It was quickly renamed “Camp Admiral,” and later Fort Meade after the Civil War General George G. Meade who had commanded the Army of the Potomac.
Fort Meade is now an Army installation that is home to the Defense Courier Service, the United States Army Field Band, the Defense Information School, the National Security Agency, the Defense Media Activity, the Defense Information Systems Agency, and the United States Cyber Command. Over 56,000 people work at Fort Meade, and nearly 9,900 live there. It currently has the third largest workforce of any Army installation.
There are schools both at Fort Meade itself and in the area. The on-post schools serve children between kindergarten and 12th grade. Fort Meade also has a credit union.