US BASE SECTION 2 HEADQUARTERS
DURING WW2
32 DENHAM STREET
AND THEN 20 DENHAM STREET, TOWNSVILLE
THEN CHANDLERS BUILDING, FLINDERS ST

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US Base Section 2 Engineers set up their Headquarters in the ground floor of the Australian Mercantile Land & Finance (A.M.L.&F.) building at 32 Denham Street, Townsville on 9 January 1942. It thus became the headquarters for the US Army Air Corps (USAAC). Officers from the headquarters were accommodated in a large old guest house on Stanton Hill called "Bayview". The Headquarters Company was established in the Empire Hotel at South Townsville. Townsville was known as Base Section 2 by the Americans.

From another source it was believed that the building on the corner of Walker and Denham Street in Townsville was being used in January 1942 as Base Headquarters for the United States Army Air Corps (USAAC). Is this the same building as the one above? I'm aware that street numbers in Townsville have changed over the years. Can anyone help me with sorting this out.

 

120 Denham Street in October 2001

 

Note the GPO at the bottom end of Denham Street

 

View down Denham Street. 120 Walker Street slightly to right of the centre of the photo in July 2002

 

On 11 May 1942, the Headquarters for US Base Section 2 Engineers moved from their Denham Street building to the Chandlers building in Flinders Street. I am not sure if this is the more recent Chandlers building or the older one in Flinders St East on the left hand side of the Excelsior Hotel (see photo below). They consolidated their operations into one building as part of this move.

 

The old Chandlers building on the left of the photo in Flinders Street East

 

Telephone Directory HQS Base Section Two APO 922 - May 1944

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
"World War II Tours" booklet
produced by Thuringowa City Council in 1992

"Diary of WW2 - North Queensland"
compiled by Peter Nielsen

 

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This page first produced 5 November 2001

This page last updated 07 January 2015