Plans for a new monument are under way on Fort Leavenworth.
Organizers are currently raising funds to erect a monument honoring the 6888th Central Directory Postal Battalion.
The monument will honor the first and only African-American WAC unit to deploy overseas during World War II. WAC stands for Women’s Army Corps.
The monument is an effort to celebrate the deeds, sacrifices and contributions of a unit that sorted mail for the armed forces during WW II, according to a press release.
The unit was deployed from February 1945 to January 1946. The women were charged with sorting mail in the European Theater of Operations that was stored in a large aircraft hangar.
“The mail was backed up for two years,” said Carlton Philpot, chairman and project manager of the 6888th Central Directory Postal Battalion Monument Committee. “There were 855 women who sorted seven million pieces of mail.”
The unit worked tirelessly to sort and process the mail and completed the effort in three months.
“Their task was complicated because some of the letters were addressed just to Junior, U.S. Army, and 7,500 were addressed to Robert Smith,” according to a press release. “If a letter was sent to the European Theater of Operations between 1943-46, these ladies probably sorted those letters.”
The unit was commanded by Lt. Col. Charity Adams. A 22-inch bust of Adams will be featured on top of the monument.
Philpot said the purpose of the monument is to enhance public awareness of the 6888th.
Philpot said he speaks at many churches and civic clubs to share the story of the unit and make the public aware of the fundraising campaign for the monument.
Funds are currently being raised for the $70,000 monument, which will be located on the Walkway of Patriots on Fort Leavenworth. The walkway is also the site of the famous Buffalo Soldier Monument at the military installation.
Plans are to dedicate the new monument in the fall of 2018.
There are many monetary levels to consider when donating to the monument project. Businesses or individuals can choose to donate $6.88, $16.88, $68.88 or any other amount.
Corporate sponsorships are also available for a minimum of $6,688.88. The names of the corporate sponsors will appear on the monument.
For more information or to donate, visit www.womenofthe6888th.org