McCormick Armory Complex

Motor Vehicle Storage Building

Date Inspected: May 21, 1951

Architect: Heyward S. Singley. No other details known1.

Armory Building:

Architect: Blume & Cannon
Contractor: W. G. King and Sons
Cost: $131,4592
Completition Date: July 1, 1960

Total square footage of the single-unit (“1-U-S”) armory building was listed at 15,115 sf in 1959 while it was under construction.3 Built on the same design as Saluda and Allendale.

The town of McCormick, South Carolina, received its first SCARNG unit on March 18, 1949, when state authorities assigned Separate Detachment (Assault and Bridge Platoon) of Headquarters and Headquarters Service Company, 122d Engineer Battalion (Combat) with only two officers and 25 enlisted men. As with many of the Guard units from smaller towns in the state, McCormick’s unit held its first meeting in a commercial facility—the third floor of the Dorn Banking Building in downtown McCormick. After more than two years of weekly meetings there, McCormick’s Guard troops moved into a new Motor Vehicle Storage Building in October 1951. Shortly thereafter, the unit was reorganized as the 125th Engineer Float Brigade Company in November 1952, maintaining this role until Pentomic Concept reorganization transformed McCormick’s Guard presence into Company B, 122d Engineer Battalion in April 1959. The following year, McCormick’s Guard unit moved into the new armory building constructed at the same site and adjacent to the existing MVSB. The unit went through two other major reorganizations, one in April 1964, when it became the 125th Engineer Company (Floating Bridge), and the other in November 1965, when it was renamed Company A, 122nd Engineer Battalion (Combat), the name it retained as of the site visit in 2010. The unit served briefly as a Selected Reserve Force from 1965 to 1967.4 In addition to serving as the home of Company A, 122nd Engineer Battalion, the facility recently served as home to the 1226th Engineers (Asphalt), who were in the process of transferring to Batesburg at the time of the 2010 site visit. At that time, the 125th Multi-Roled Bridge Company was scheduled for re-assignment to the McCormick armory.5

The McCormick unit has served in a variety of local and statewide capacities during its tenure, including as a peacekeeping unit at Orangeburg in February 1968 during racial tensions there, and in May 1970 for riot control duty at the University of South Carolina. In many other instances, the unit has assisted with finding missing persons, fighting fires, and assisting with relief services following various natural disaster and weather events.6 The local community frequently uses McCormick’s 1960 armory facility as rental space and as a venue for local Recreation Department basketball games. At the time of the 2010 site visit, the building was not used for polling purposes or other municipal activities. While Kitchens noted in 2005 that Guard personnel maintain a general historical file on site, this file could not be located during the recent site visit. After an exhaustive search, however, on-site personnel did find an original site plan for the 1960 armory building in the entrance foyer storage closet, on which Heyward S. Singley was clearly listed as the architect of record for the proposed 1960 armory.7

As of the 2010 site visit, the McCormick facility consisted of four buildings on just over five acres of land located about one half mile to the northwest of McCormick’s town center, including the circa 1951 MVSB, the 1960 armory building, a wooden storage building, and a concrete block POL building.

Photo Gallery

  1. While noted architect Heyward S. Singley did not specifically claim credit for having designed this MVSB in 1951, he is known to have taken a contract in 1948 to design a total of twenty MVSBs for locations throughout the state. See Heyward S. Singley to Donald Russell, 1954.

  2. James C. Dozier to Headquarters, Departments of the Army and Air Force, September 18, 1958, Folder 633, South Carolina, Box 3571, Army-NGB Decimal File, 1958, RG 168, NARA II; Inspection Report, July 1, 1960, Folder 633, South Carolina, Box 3967, Army-NGB Decimal File, 1960, RG 168, NARA II. It should be noted that Heyward Singley’s name appears as the architect of record on the undated site plan for the McCormick Armory, which is presently stored on site at this facility. The full architectural plans for this facility have not been located. Singley died in August 1959, so it’s likely that this contract was reassigned following his death.

  3. “Armory Inventory and Stationing Plan, South Carolina,” 1959, Folder 633, South Carolina, Box 3784, Army-NGB Decimal File, 1959, RG 168, NARA II.

  4. Rhodes, 126. Rhodes incorrectly places the unit’s move-in date to the new armory building in September 1959.

  5. Sergeant Michael Isbell, personal conversation, October 25, 2010.

  6. Rhodes, 126.

  7. Kitchens, et al, 62, and Michael Isbell.