There are in the world approximately 42 secret communities. There many of secret or private facilities in the U.S. Most are secret for military purposes, one is a presidential retreat no listed on a map, and one a possible U.F.O. containment area. In this blog I will address 3 of them with more to follow.
A famous one is Los Alamos, New Mexico a very beautiful and pristine town... It is in the mountains Northwest of Santa Fe, New Mexico. I love Los Alamos and spent much time there when I lived in Santa Fe. Historically it was formed in 1942, when the Department of War was looking for a very private spot to create a secret weapon and seized the land under the law of eminent domain. The people who lived there were paid for it at fair market value, and the Los Alamos National Laboratory was born. It was the site where they developed the atomic bomb. (1)
Los Alamos was very secretive, and the people who came to live there- scientists, support staff and their families were monitored. Their telephone calls and mail screened to make sure the location and any information they had remained in the facility. When shipments of goods came in they were labeled as ordinary items to so to keep secret what was coming into the community.
Probably the most famous resident of Los Alamos was J. Robert Oppenheimer, the physicist that developed the atomic bomb. It was Oppenheimer and Lieutenant General Leslie Groves that requested a shielded location and well stocked laboratory to develop their weapon. Originally the personnel in the community were to be commissioned U.S. Army but Oppenheimer was underweight, with a chronic cough. He could not pass physical but did follow the process from beginning to end. So, he was a hands-on developer and could ferret out issues quickly. (2)
Another interesting point about Oppenheimer as I digress is that he was affiliated loosely with the communists in the U.S. When I say loosely, I mean is girlfriend Jean Tatlock had left leaning parents. Oppenheimer supported left progressive/socialist agendas by donating money and attending meetings. His wife Katherine was a former communist member. Many of his associates were also communists. The F.B.I. opened a file on him in 1941, and he was under investigation by the F.B.I. though out his time at Los Alamos. He left Los Alamos in late 1945 for Caltech in California. (3)
The atomic bomb was first tested near Alamogordo, New Mexico on July 16, 1945. Later it was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan on August 6, 1945, and a second bomb was dropped on Nagasaki, Japan on August 9, 1945. (4) Thus, ending the war in the Pacific arena. Los Alamos also developed the Hydrogen bomb in 1940’s.
Today the town is not private, I have driven up that two-lane road to the top of the hill and in to this lovely little town many times, it is beautiful, clean and welcoming. The Los Alamos National Laboratory is a hub of scientific research and development. It works with integrated nanotechnologies, IT in algorithms for computational science or computer science, nuclear research, global security and much more. You can visit the facility today, they have the wonderful Bradbury Museum for all things ‘Manhattan Project’.
Oak Ridge Tennessee is another secret WWII town, it is just west of Knoxville, Tennessee. The University of Chicago created the Clinton Laboratories to perform advance nuclear experiments. Later the name was changed to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The Oak Ridge National Laboratory land was purchased by Brig. General Leslie Groves, 59,000 acres in 1942.
Enrico Fermi was a world class physicist who worked with Oppenheimer at Los Alamos. The set up in Oak Ridge was like Los Alamos in that there were guards and security to enter the town. When you hired you took a lie detector to work there. Fermi was the first scientist in the U.S. to conduct a nuclear fission experiment in 1939 when he was at Columbia University. (5) He received a Nobel Prize in physics for finding the existence of new radioactive elements produced by neutron irradiation. (6) Interesting side note, he was one of the first to warn military leaders about the potential issues with nuclear energy after is own work in the 1920’s and 1930’s.
The experiments Fermi did at Columbia with producing fast neutrons created the chain reaction for a nuclear reactor. The first one assembled by Fermi and his team was the CP-1. This lead to the X10 reactor that was installed at Oak Ridge. This nuclear reactor used enriched uranium to produce plutonium. Fermi’s team assembled the first reactor designed for continuous activity. (7)
After World War II the laboratory became a research facility. Today it is sponsored by the Department of Energy and administered or ran by U-Battelle, LLC. In the 1950’s it made portable nuclear generators for heat and electricity that was sent to remote military bases. Today it conducts a wide array of chemical experiments, studies nuclear medicine, and created a land data base for population count with Landscan that supplies the federal and state governments with up to the date population counts. This is just some of the vast work of the facility. The town is separate from the operating facility. You can tour the facilities…It is a part of the Knoxville metro area and is often referred to as “Atomic City”. These secret cities though not exactly like the fictional Eureka, Oregon, they are company towns of geniuses.
Another secret location in this segment is in the beautiful Blue Ridge mountains in Virginia. It is called the Mountain Weather Emergency Operations Center. They call it a civilian command center, it really is a command center for the government agency FEMA, or Federal Emergency Management Agency. Officials prefer the name ‘High Point Special Facility’. In case of a national emergency the highest-ranking officials both civilian and military will be evacuated there.
The history for this facility goes back to the 1800’s when it was a weather station. The more recent history was during the cold war, when there was threat of nuclear attack from the Soviet Union. In 1958 a compound was completed inside the mountain. It is a facility that is set up to house the president and top officials in case of a nuclear or other attack on the white house.
It took 3 decades from 1938-1969 to complete the compound that exists underground today. They have done experiments to determine how it would withstand a nuclear attack. There are ponds underground for drinking water that are carved from solid rock, and ponds to cool the extensive computer equipment. There are sleeping quarters for several hundred people, and a radio and television studio was set up to broadcast from the facility. There are at least 20 offices set up in the complex protected with concrete in case of nuclear attack. There are Diesel engines for electricity and refrigerators used to store food. They have a cafeteria and recreation area along with a hospital that has a crematorium within the mountain. The government officials and president would continue to operate from that location while the threat goes on. After 9-11 many high-ranking officials were taken to Mountain Weather facility. To this day it is still part of an evacuation plan.
It is in a heavily wooded area and almost invisible to the outside world. Time magazine wrote:
Mount Weather is a virtually self-contained facility. Aboveground, scattered across manicured lawns, are about a dozen buildings bristling with antennas and microwave relay systems. An on-site sewage- treatment plant, with a 90,000-gal.-a-day capacity, and two tanks holding 250,000 gal. of water could last some 200 people more than a month; underground ponds hold additional water supplies. (8)
On maps the area that spans two (London and Clarke) counties is listed as United States of America, on the location. In the FEMA phone directory, it is simply SF, or special facility.
FEMA uses the facility for 8 departments:
- Virginia National Processing Center to help victims begin to recover from a disaster
- Disaster Finance Center which is the hub for disaster relief aid. They project needs and pay the relief monies to victims
- Disaster Information Systems Clearinghouse-keeps computer records for all communications and equipment needed
- Disaster Personnel Operations Division-it is the human resources that recruits, trains and sends out personnel to aid victims
- Agency Logistics Center-provides inventory information for 3 different relief centers
- The Conference and Training Center-They provide all the training for personnel
- Information Technology Services Division- provides all computer support for the agency and missions.
- Weather Management Division-which operates and maintains the facility
This facility is top secret. From the historic developer of the atomic bomb in Los Alamo, New Mexico, the nuclear reactors of Oak Ridge National Laboratory to the completely secret Mt. Weather Emergency Operations Center these are only three of these secret cities in the U.S. There are more to come.
- Los Alamos From Below, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uY-u1qyRM5w
- The Town that never was, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9LLzBWQY7m0
- Oppenheimer’s Letter of Response on Letter Regarding the Oppenheimer Affair, http://www.nuclearfiles.org/menu/library/correspondence/oppenheimer-robert/corr_oppenheimer_1954-03-04.htm
- The Atomic Bombing of HiroshimaArchived 2016-03-03 at the Wayback Machine., U.S. Department of Energy, Office of History and Heritage Resources.
- Anderson, H.L.; Booth, E.; Dunning, J.; Fermi, E.; Glasoe, G.; Slack, F. (16 February 1939). "The Fission of Uranium".
- Guerra, Francesco; Robotti, Nadia (December 2009). "Enrico Fermi's Discovery of Neutron-Induced Artificial Radioactivity: The Influence of His Theory of Beta Decay". Physics in Perspective.
- Rettig, Polly (December 8, 1975). "X-10 Reactor, Graphite Reactor". National Register of Historic Places. Retrieved November 11,2012.
- Gup, Ted (June 24, 2001). "Civil Defense Doomsday Hideaway". Time. Berryville, Virginia. Retrieved November 26, 2017
- Weapons of Mass Destruction, https://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/facility/mt_weather.htm