Quonset History

What are Nissen Huts?

Quonset Huts during WWI

Nissen huts have fallen in popularity since their invention in WWI. To our knowledge no one is actively producing them but their essence lives on in a similar building style; quonsets. What are Nissen Huts? They are an arch-style building consisting of an internal frame with steel over it. The internal frame was typically steel.…

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Where did the name Quonset come from?

Nissen Building

Quonset buildings have a fascinating history that predates the use of the building term ‘Quonset‘ itself. The term ‘Quonset’ comes from an Algonquian First Nations word meaning “small, long place”. That definition seems to fit the buildings themselves, but it’s actually referring to a peninsula. Read on for a brief history of these amazing buildings…

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Quonset Hut or Nissen Hut?

The history of the Quonset hut is definitely an example of the old saying: ‘necessity is the mother of invention.’ Based on an earlier British design-the Nissen hut, the Quonset Hut began life as a series of US Navy requirements. The Navy didn’t care about a particular design or look, all it cared about was…

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A Brief Quonset Hut History

The Quonset hut has many features that fit the wartime needs of the US military during World War 2. Most of the American participation in World War 2 took place in the Pacific and this front gave the Americans quite a challenge. Across hundreds of miles of vast ocean expanse lay many small islands from…

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The First Quonset Hut

Quonset Huts during WWI

True to its versatile, easy to assemble, and portable form, the first Quonset Hut was built within 2 months after the Fuller company got the Navy contract award. The original hut was made of corrugated steel sheet sides. The ends of the hut had plywood coverings and windows and a door. The interior of the…

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The Quonset Hut’s Original Requirements

Quonset Huts during WWI

The US Navy needed housing that is easy to disassemble, light, and can be transported across long distances. Moreover, the building must be simple enough so it can be put together by people with no real carpentry or construction skills. To meet these challenging requirements, the Quonset Hut was born. At this point, it is…

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The Original Specifications for the Quonset Hut

The overarching need that gave rise to the distinctive Quonset Hut design is that the housing or building must be all-purpose and must be lightweight. This means that the housing can be shipped by the Navy to all corners of the globe. Moreover, the housing must be simple enough that it can be assembled at…

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The Quonset Hut’s Contributions to World War 2

Quonset Huts during WWI

Furthering our post last week. Here’s are a few more facts about WW2 and the Quonset’s contribution. Named after Quonset Point in North Kingston, Rhode Island where the Naval Construction Battalion Center was based, the Quonset Hut made the Americans’ efforts at chasing down the Japanese and concentrating troops easier. Since the huts were easy…

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The Key Role Quonset Huts Played in World War II

Quonset Huts during WWI

There are a lot of factors that contributed to the US/Allied victory over the Axis powers in World War II. Ask a historian about a contributing factor and you will get an answer that might vary from another opinion given by another historian. Considering how big and complicated World War II was, this diversity of…

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