The First Recruit17-year old Joseph Gregg of Terre Haute, Indiana arrived at Great Lakes Naval Center on July 1, 1911, the day of the first commissioning of the Station. Later that year on October 8, President William Howard Taft officially dedicated Great Lakes. Joseph Gregg served in the Navy from 1911-1914. He is buried in the Great Lakes cemetery. The memory of the first recruit is maintained today with the presentation of the Joseph Gregg Award at the weekly recruit graduation.
Original Historic StructuresAround Ross field are many of the original, historic buildings. Building One and its 155 foot clock tower is the focal point of the base. As the Main Administration Building, the Regional Admiral, Base Commander, and their staffs work there. Its clock on all four sides gives visual time checks to all in sight and is used to regulate clocks throughout the base. Building 3, the largest of the original buildings, included classrooms, a library, a gymnasium, a swimming pool, bowling alleys, and an 1000-seat auditorium. Building 4, originally a drill hall, is now used a gymnasium complex. Building 5, originally the mess hall and galley, is now utilized as office space. Building 26 and 27, originally barracks buildings, now also provide office space.