From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Anderson, Myrtle E.

Myrtle E. Anderson was from Boston, MA. In 1943, she was a 1st Lieutenant in the Women's Army Corps (WACs). Anderson and 2nd Lieutenant Margaret E. Barnes Jones arrived in Camp Breckinridge, KY, with 175 enlisted African American women. The enlistees and officers were the first African American women of the U.S. Army to be stationed in Kentucky. The enlistees were given menial tasks such as cleaning latrines, and some of the women resigned from the WACs. Majors Jones and Anderson fought for better work assignments for the women. Ft. Breckinridge, also referred to as Camp Breckinridge, was disposed of by the U. S. Army on December 5, 1962. Prior to becoming a WAC, Myrtle E. Anderson had been a member of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAACs) Officers Training Camp at Ft. Des Moines, IA. The WAACs was transitioned into the Women's Army Corps (WACs) during 1943.

For more about the African American women enlistees see To Serve My Country, To Serve My Race, by B. L. Moore; "6 WACs Resign: WAC Clerks Decline to Scrub Floors," Philadelphia Afro-American, July 10, 1943, p. 1; and see photo image with Myrtle Anderson and others above the photo caption "WAACs departure from Des Moines" in the article "Speaking of WAACs," Arkansas State Press, 01/01/1943, p. 3. For more about Camp Breckinridge, see the Camp Breckinridge entry in the Kentucky Encyclopedia; and History of Camp Breckinridge, Kentucky, by P. Heady. See also the NKAA entry WACs Protest at Camp Breckinridge, KY.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Union County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Camp Breckinridge, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Outside Kentucky Place Name


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Entry: Jones, Margaret Ellen Barnes
NKAA Entry: WACs' Protest at Camp Breckinridge, KY
NKAA Source: Plaindealer, The (newspaper) (Kansas City)
NKAA Source: To serve my country, to serve my race (book)
NKAA Source: Philadelphia Afro-American (newspaper)
NKAA Source: Arkansas State press (newspapers)
NKAA Source: The Kentucky encyclopedia (online full text)
NKAA Source: History of Camp Breckinridge, Kentucky
NKAA Source: Plaindealer, The (newspaper) (Kansas City)

Related Entries Citing this Entry

NKAA Entry:  Jones, Margaret Ellen Barnes
NKAA Entry:  WACs' Protest at Camp Breckinridge, KY
NKAA Entry:  Duncan, Lillian W.
NKAA Entry:  Haskin, Vera Anne Harrison
NKAA Entry:  Morrison, Anna B. Collins

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Anderson, Myrtle E.,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed March 20, 2023,

Last modified: 2021-12-13 19:32:47