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MCRD San Diego

West Coast Recruit Training

Male recruits from west of the Mississippi River complete their recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) San Diego. Construction on the base started in 1919, and it was formally commissioned in 1923. The buildings were designed by architect Bertram Goodhue in the Spanish Colonial Revival style and are now on the National Register of Historic Places. Recruits cannot complete all of their training at MCRD San Diego. They must leave the depot during a three-week phase at nearby Camp Pendleton for field and marksmanship training and return once more to complete The Crucible before graduating. Over 21,000 recruits train at MCRD San Diego annually.

  • Marine Corps Base San Diego consists of 388 acres, of which some 367 acres have been reclaimed tidal area, and 28 buildings that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Thirteen buildings on the base have been named for famous Marines, such as Daly Barracks, Pendleton Hall, McDougall Hall and Day Hall.
  • In 1923, the Marine Recruit Depot for the west coast relocated from Mare Island Navy Shipyards in Vallejo, CA, to its new home in San Diego, CA.
  • Marine Corps Base San Diego has been home to the 4th, 6th and 10th Marine Regiments, the Fleet Marine Force and the 2nd Marine Division.
  • The Recruit Training Command grew from three to eight battalions to handle the troop requirements for the Korean War.
  • The Vietnam War caused the next period of major expansion on the depot, resulting in the construction of five new recruit barracks, a new dining hall, a new bowling alley and a new Regional Dental and Medical Clinic.
  • In 1965, the first drafted civilians reported for training during the Vietnam War era.
  • In 1966, the first company of recruits passed The Crucible.