Eglin Cultural Resources Office
Ms. Melinda A. Rogers
Chief - Environmental Assets Section
The inventory of cultural resources managed by the Eglin CRM program includes 1,881 prehistoric, 679 historic, and 437 prehistoric and historic archeological sites, and 1,303 historic above-ground structures. The majority of the buildings and structures aged 50 years or older within the Eglin real property inventory have been evaluated for National Register eligibility. Surveys have been conducted on 146,286 of the acres within the Eglin installation that are identified as having a high probability of containing cultural resources and recommended for an archeological survey.
Building 408 was constructed during World War II to house a strato-chamber to test equipment and weapons. Unique for its capability to test weapons as large as 75mm cannons, simulate altitudes of 65,000 feet, and lower temperatures to -105 degrees Fahrenheit, it also represented the only World War II-era high-altitude test chamber on Eglin. The US Army Air Forces (USAAF) utilized it to educate personnel in the physiological effects of high-altitude flying, night vision, spatial disorientation, decompression, ejection seat escape, and the acceleration effects of high-altitude flight. The strato-chamber also provided a means of testing the durability of flight clothing, radar and photographic equipment, aircraft parts, life rafts, rations, and even armament in extreme environments. Building 408 was significant for its association with historic events of the US Air Force and with Eglin's role in World War II and for its unique design and construction.