Nike Park

Nike Park SignNike-Ajax Missile Site N-75

13036 Nike Park Road, Carrollton, VA 23314

Click HERE to view a 15-minute informational video.

Free walking tours of the site:

2 p.m.

April 18, June 13, August 22 and October 17, 2020

At the conclusion of World War II, tension existed between the Soviet Union and the democratic counties of the West. This tension, or Cold War, continued until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.During this time of widening ideological beliefs, escalating tensions were quantifiable by both sides’ costly defense spending, propaganda, a conventional and nuclear arms race, technological and weapons development and espionage.

Fears of Soviet bombings sparked the United States’ creation of a Nike surface-to-air missile system ready to protect major metropolitan areas as well as large military installations like those found in the Hampton Roads. In the U.S., these air defense bases encompassed the areas that they were built to protect.

The Carrollton Nike Missile Battery was operational by 1954 and was one of eight bases that made up the Norfolk Defense Area. As with all continental bases, it consisted of two areas: a launch area and a control area. These two sites were connected by an underground cable system that enabled them to communicate.

In the event of an impending attack, the main alert would come from Norfolk, and all bases in the area prepared to fire. At Carrollton, troops manned their stations and stood ready to deploy four 20-foot missiles. Once missiles were fired, the radar system at Jones Creek would guide them to their target.

After the Nike-Ajax system was upgraded to the Nike-Hercules system which carried nuclear warheads. Some bases, but not N-75, were converted to house both Ajax and Hercules missiles. In 1963, the base ceased to be used as a missile site, and the Army Signal Corps used it as a RADAR site.

Today, the former Nike-Ajax missile base is now home to the Isle of Wight County Parks and Recreation Department. Many original buildings still stand including the original barracks, mess hall, administration and recreation building and officer/ non-commissioned officer family housing.

Visitors can also see the fueling area and concrete slabs that mark the location of the underground missile magazines.

The park, over 100 acres in size, offers different recreational activities and features softball and soccer fields, basketball, volleyball, and tennis courts, picnic areas, nature and mountain bike trails, skate park, playgrounds, senior center and a recreation hall. In addition, there are fishing opportunities in Jones Creek.

Visitors are welcome to walk or drive through Site N-75 and recall the experience of soldiers stationed stateside.

The park is open daily from 8:30 a.m. until dusk.

For more information, contact Isle of Wight County Parks and Recreation:

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