The Montford Point Marine Memorial is part of the Lejeune Memorial Gardens which includes the Beirut Memorial, 9/11 Memorial Beam, Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the Eagle, Globe and Anchor reflective pool.
In 1942, President Roosevelt established a presidential directive giving African Americans an opportunity to be recruited into the Marine Corps. These African Americans, from all states, were not sent to the traditional boot camps of Parris Island, South Carolina and San Diego, California. Instead, African American Marines were segregated, experiencing basic training at Montford Point, a facility at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.
Approximately 20,000 African American recruits received training at Montford Point Camp during World War II, starting on August 26, 1942. The initial intent was to discharge these African American Marines after the War. In July of 1948 President Harry S. Truman issued Executive Order #9981 negating segregation. In September of 1949, Montford Point Camp was deactivated, ending seven years of segregation.
USNS Montford Point the lead ship of her class of Expeditionary Transfer Docks (ESD), is a ship named in honor of African American Marine Corps recruits who trained at Montford Point Camp, North Carolina