30th Communications Squadron
3902d Air Base Wing
Offutt Air Force Base, Omaha, NE
The 30th Communications Squadron was activated at Andrews Field, Camp Springs, Maryland in the fall of 1946. Its mission was to provide limited communications to Headquarters Strategic Air Command (HQ SAC)
Early in 1948, the 30th Communications Squadron assumed control of the base telephone exchange and an air/ground radio station. At the same time, it took control of radio teletype and point-to-point manual Morse Code operations at McGuire Air Force Base, New Jersey.
In November 1948, Headquarters Strategic Air Command SAC) moved to Offutt Air Force Base, Omaha, Nebraska from Andrews Field. The move included the 30th Communications Squadron which ended its duties at Andrews Field and at McGuire AFB. At the time, the squadron had 5 officers and 138 enlisted personnel.
At Offutt AFB, the squadron took on the task of furnishing telephone, teletype, and radio support for both SAC and the base. It organized into three operational units, these being: telephone, communications center, and radio operations.
Some squadron personnel were on detached duty at Mead/Elkhorn , NE. where Radio Operations was established by 1950.
Marvin Cook states "When I first went to Mead, NE., we worked out of two old fire stations. One was used as a receiver site and the other as the transmitter site. They were separated by several miles. Our equipment consisted of SP600 receivers and BC610 transmitters and AN/TRC keying lines between Mead and Offutt. When we moved to Elkhorn to our new GLOBECOMM Building, we used Collins R388 receivers and we had one SOCS position where we used a new single side band (SSB) receiver (transceiver). Also, when we moved to Elkhorn, we used microwave instead of ANTRC keying lines".
The facilities were primitive by todays standards. The telephone exchange was manual rather than automated. The communications center had only three teletype circuits and used slow manual encryption methods. The radio equipment used was obsolete and used primarily for Morse Code operations. Most of these systems were located with HQ SAC which occupied buildings on the north side of the base.
By January 1952, the duties of the 30th Communications Squadron had expanded to include: tactical telephone systems, interbase communications center facilities, cryptographic facilities, air/ground Morse Code and voice communications, point-to-point manual Morse Code and radio/teletype communications, and telephoto facilities. Its personnel had increased to 16 officers and 369 enlisted.
In April 1952, the squadron participated in the first of what later became a series of local flood control efforts. It furnished manpower to assist in sandbagging dikes to contain the Missouri River between Omaha, Ne. and Council Bluffs, Ia.
By June 1952, voice came into use on air/ground systems replacing manual Morse Code systems. The Elkhorn receiver site became a detachment of the 30th Communications Squadron. The SACCOMNET now terminated 45 circuits at Offutt AFB and used 100wpm teletype equipment.
In January of 1957, the squadron's communications center, telephone exchange, and single sideband voice radio became operational in the new HQ SAC underground Control Center. By November, the closed circuit television system had been installed and placed into operation in the underground center. This was the first closed circuit television system within the Air Force.
By late 1959, the 30th Communications Squadron had grown to four times its size of 1948. It now had 28 officers, 546 enlisted, and 16 civilians.
On February 1, 1960, the 1st Communications Group-Command was organized. The 30th Communications Squadron was assigned to the group and assumed its original role as a communications center squadron. The 31st Communications Squadron was organized to assume the telephone and maintenance responsibilities from the old 30th Communications Squadron. The 32nd Communications Squadron was organized to assume radio and television responsibilities from the old 30th Communications Squadron. The 32nd had its headquarters at Elkhorn with detachments at Hooper and Offutt.
The 30th Communications Squadron and its derivative 31st and 32nd were deactivated October 1, 1970. Any remaining functions of the squadron from its early days would eventually be absorbed into what became the 1st Aerospace Information Systems Wing.
The Strategic Air Command and HQ SAC ceased to exist in 1992. Offutt Air Force Base continues to operate as the United States Strategic Command headquarters (USSTRATCOM) representing all four branches of service.
View Second Guestbook Archive (Dates 08/11/04 through 09/13/07)
View First Guestbook Archive (Dates through 06/12/04)
Part of a Web Site Constructed by
Albert J. Wheat
9529 Parker St.
Omaha, NE 68114
Return to Home Page