Friday, December 31, 2010


Construimus, Batuimus
"We Build, We Fight"

Most of us that bounces around in the nautical research hobby....or better yet...the history of the U.S. Navy...are aware of the "Seabees," but I myself I always wondered to myself, "How in the world did a 'sea going outfit' develop....and accept a construction outfit?" does make one roll that thought around in the ole gray matter for a tad of I decided I was going to put down some facts about this "Can Do" part of the U.S. Navy, and to add some frosting to the cake I wanted to give an 'over-sight' of what they accomplished in WW II.

So...this is what this "Two Part" article is all about.   Lengthy???  yep...sure is...about 27 + pages worth of history and data.  So if your looking for "Seabee" info for a particular area....or time period you "may" find some to that info in this long and I suppose sometimes boring article of data....  But, and yes I will say "but"...for those of you that may happen onto a thread of data that you've been searching for in connection to the subject of "The Seabees"....well that will make this article all the more worth spending the time in banging it out.

Ok...I said it was a "Two Part" article....  Just click on this Link: THE "CAN DO" NAVY and this will take you too "Part One" the end of "Part One" is a link to "Part Two."
[Just in case you wish to "by-pass" Part one....and go directly to Part on this: PART TWO ]
Hope you find  the article informative and interesting.

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Some of you that prowl these articles are looking for ships, that a family member was associated with...a merchantmen...or Navy Sailor that roamed the seas on the many Liberty & Victory ships that criss-crossed the oceans during the war years.  Well if you care to donate a tad of your time in reading a little tad of 'history'..of how a lumber company got just may run into an answer to that question you always had of,..."I wonder whatever happened to that ship he was on?"

I don't know about you but I'm always astonished at how the history of one common thing seems to inter-weave into events that had an impact upon the war years...specifically the "nautical" impact that it played.

Now I can't set here and say this article is of a huge interest to the masses, but it is short and sweet and too the imbedded into the article is several ships names...Liberty & Victory ship names ...that was purchased by the Weyerhaeuser Lumber Co. to move there product from point A to point B.  So this is why I think there is value to my time of banging it out on this ole keyboard ....hopefully someone can find just where that "Long lost Ship ended up."

Anyway folks if you'd care to give this short run through of an article a 'going over' you can link up to it by just clicking on this: 

I hope the article is interesting and useful to you

Friday, December 24, 2010


What happen?........How did a PBM Mariner just vanish?

Oh yes...things disappear all the time each of us has looked many times for a set of car keys that we "Knew" we laid on the table just last they are "gone!"......hmmmmmmmm....strange!!!!

It gets alot more serious when five TBM Avengers ...known as "Flight Nineteen" just ups and disappears....yes indeed it did happen.  Then to add salt to this unexplained event....a search plane....a pretty good size 'dude' herself..........................

She just up's and disappears as well

Now wait just a minute here...what the heck is going on?.....well folks that is just what this next article is all about....trying to make some logical sense of how all this took place back in December of 1945.

There was "nothing" ever found of the five Avengers....the pilots...nor of the PBM Mariner...or her crew...but get this....21 days after these planes and there crews disappears off our Southeast coast...what is now called "The Devil's or Bermuda Triangle" of the familes received a read: "You have been misinformed about me.  (I) Am very much alive. George."

Talk about making you 'shake in your boots'....that sure would.

The U.S. Navy did do an investigation....and many things were discussed...mulled over...looked at in different angles.....

Well tell you what....if your interested I'll just refer you to the article itself...and you can give it all a going over and make your own judgement at just what did take place....but before I put down the "link" to the article...I will say this.....  "Yes" one would think that logic must prevail....things like this just can't happen without it somehow being explained.....and just when you think you've read about that 'logic aspect of it all"...then a "curve" is throwed into the mix....

I'll let you the reader determine your own conclusion

Hope you enjoy the article

Just click on this title to go to article: MYSTERY OF THE MISSING MARINER

Thursday, December 23, 2010


We all think that 'Just because your a U.S. Navy Sailor' that you'd serve aboard U.S. Flagged vessels.  Well folks...."I hate to burst your bubble" on this particular thought....if you were in the U.S. Navy Armed Guard that was not always the 'norm.'

And not only was this true for the U.S. Navy Armed Guard....but it was also true of the guys that joined the Merchant Marine Cadet Corps.   They as well were placed aboard Allied Ships.

Now I'm sure your setting here reading this and wondering " Well what the heck, what is the problem???  A ship is a ship and a gun is a gun.  So what is the big deal?"  Well folks it really was a "BIG DEAL!!!"  Reason being alot of those foreign flagged ships were only armed with ineffective weapons......most of these weapons on these foreign flagged ships was of the WW I era....

So you see...when some 'buzz happy Jap or German' came bearing down on the ship you were on....and they was 'throwing lead at you like there was no tomorrow' you wanted to at least have equipment that you "give as well as take" with this "buzz happy" enemy air-dale...and hopefully send his butt to land in the 'sea.' if you didn't know of this "situation"....and I've stirred the juices of 'wanting to know more'....well you can link to my article about this......just click on this link:

Hope the article is informative and a good read for you

Sunday, December 19, 2010


An Elegant well as....A Naval Wonder
Over a period of many years I've banged out of this ole keyboard a good number of 'ship articles,' and one of the things that seems to sadden me the most is what happens to what was once a gallant vessel....a vessel that has served the war effort with awesome become an old decrepted rust bucket, and pushed to an unforseen corner of a backwater bay. 

In other words...."we don't know what to do with 'them' so put them somewhere we can't see them and hopefully they'll just rust away"....yep, saddly that is what takes place.

One such example of that is what happen to the USS West Point (AP-23).  Started out to become the "Knight in Shinning Honor" named the "SS America" of the United States Lines.  I mean to tell you folks she was a beauty....or "one hot dude" as they would say.  She could extreme comfort, in three classes...1,202 passengers .....and carried a crew of 600 as well.

So...what started out as a "fairy tale"....didn't last long....  Along came WW II....and this "Ship of Dreams" was all dressed up with "no place to go."  Her Atlantic route was just plain "Unsafe" due to this rumbling of War that seemed to be on everyones mine....  Well the war became real....and in due course...the SS America was taken over by the U.S. Navy.  Converted to a large transport....renamed the USS West Point (AP-23)....  And let me tell you folks she done her job with one time she hauled .....are you ready for this?....9,305 people....including her crew.

Ok....enough said...if you are interested in the "Whole Story" of the USS West Point (AP-23) ...what she was involed in....what happened after the war....and how she ended up....which includes pictures of her in recent years.....(which is not a pretty site)....all you need to do is click on this link:

Hope you enjoy the article

Thursday, December 16, 2010



If you are somewhat of a naval history buff, as I am, you become aware of the era that is most interesting and informative to your reading pleasure.  I myself I like to read and research what I call the "Development years."  This era of interest to me is early to mid 1900's.  This is where I can come upon the development of new weapons, how they were tried and tested.....ideas on tactics of engagement, as well as new ships for more or less "tools of the trade."

Well folks "new" and "modern" are good 'words' to broadcast to other countries that our Navy is "on top of our game."  But whenever new "things" or "items" are introduced into this vast warfare system....alot of us forget that these "tools of the trade" must actually be tired.....and we also have to realize ...sometimes they work....sometimes they don't.  When they "don't"....loss of life can be an unfortunate and tragic aside......which is not easy to swallow.

This is what took place when a new attack submarine USS Squalus (SS-192), one of five of the Sargo Class, built over a 2 year perios from 1937 to 1939, doing a 'test run'....made a 'fast dive' test of the Isle of Shoals.....and she failed to surface.

This article/story involves one to the most amazing rescues in U.S. naval history.....also if you choose to read this article you'll see that it entails somewhat of a "story within a story" of a diving bell that had never been used berfore......and the U.S. Navy was bound and determined to get them sailors of the Squalus up and out of that potential water tomb that they were now in.

Ok....if you'd care to let the ole eyes dance over this article I really do believe it will hold your well as possibly enlighten you on what these men of the sea was going through to 'rescue' their buddies....with equipment that had never been used before...  That is scary in anyone's way of thinking.

The article can be read by clicking on this link: THE TASK: LET'S BRING EM UP ALIVE

Sunday, December 5, 2010


Alot of research has been done on U.S. Navy ships, and their crews, where they been, when did they arrive, when did they leave a certain area...who boarded....who jumped ship....and on and on....but not much is ever written about what ships was involved in developments of material that was inter-connected with these "Man of War" vessels.

After all these ships that was first developed was pretty much designed to "fight" so this involved "gunnery"....and "ordnance".  Oh Yes, guns, cannons, cannon balls had been around many, many years ....but when the U.S. Navy decided to float their own "fleets of corks" on the sea's of the world.....the "Head Brass" suddenly realized....fleet gunnery as well as ordnance had to under go modernization....that was just not a "fleeting thought" with them guys...."It was a must." as I said above...ship history has been looked into in great depths.....but what ships were involved in these much needed improvements of gunnery & ordnance?  Well the Sloop-of-War Plymouth 1857 was just such a ship....and  that is where our story begins.

So...if you'd care to enlighen yourself in this particular subject can do so by just clicking on this title: U.S. NAVY GUNNERY AND THE PLYMOUTH  and this link will take you right to the article...

Hope you enjoy the article

Thursday, December 2, 2010


You know most of us don't really give a hoot just where 'things' go....or end up...when we toss them away due to "just not being useful anymore" long as they are out of sight...well I guess that is sufficient.  This is pretty much the way it is with 'ships.'  We really don't know, or care, where them ole rust buckets 'go' after they are passed around from one shipping company to another, but for those of us that research these 'beasts of the sea'...we soon learn that there sure are many dumping grounds for all these 'rust buckets.'

So...that brings me to this next article that I am 'throwing out' to y'all.  It kind of gives you an overview of just where these 'graveyards' are....and also just how do these 'graveyards' come about.

Oh yes I've presented past articles about the same subject fact if you look in the archives of this site there are at least one or maybe two articles on "Ship Dumping Grounds".  This one just has a slightly different approach to the subject of "Ship Graveyards" ...and I thought y'all may interested to read about these dumping grounds...and there orgin. suggestion is fill the ole coffee cup up, grab that last mouthful of morning coffee cake...and click on this title: BIZARRE SHIP GRAVEYARDS  and I think you'll find this resonably short article somewhat interesting.

Hope you Enjoy the article

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Did you ever wonder just how the U.S. Navy actually got started???...  How she took that first 'baby step' in acquiring a Navy?

You see the United States of America is one of the very few countries in the world which can claim what at least some justice to have had a navy of at least some sort since its very earliest days.  Actually the above ship picture....which is a ship named "Hannah" was "the ship" that got it all started....and to top it all off....Rhode Island....the smallest state...had her nose right in with all of it that dear folks it pretty darn neat.  This all took place of course back in the late 1700's....actually 1775 to be a state of fact.

The above "Hannah" was in fact a 78 ton schooner....converted from a a tough seahorse by adding some cannons....and a number of swivel guns....  Now you would think this ship that was suppose to be the first ship to help the colonys gain independance, would have been paid for by Congress.....whoa...hold on there ...that is not the case at all.  Ole George Washington he dug deep into his own pocket and paid for that schooner well as all the conversion from schooner to ...somewhat of a warship.

So this was the 'bare bones beginning' of what was to become and we now know as the U.S. Navy....oh yes we went through many steps from the "Hannah" to where we are today....but when you look at the above ship your looking at the "first steps of an infant vessel that actually turned into a mighty warship fleet"

If you want to read about the bare bones beginnings.....[and there will be more articles on this as I go along this path in attempting to provide some insight on how we got from 0 to where we are today]....just click on this title:  WHAT THINK YOU OF AN AMERICAN FLEET  I really do think you'll surprise yourself on the interest you have in this part of history...


Monday, November 22, 2010


I don't know if you realize it or not....but we'll do 'anything it takes' to rescue a navy don't make any difference the expense or the danager....those men come first...that is the bottom line.

Many times Navy flyers took off from a carrier in the Pacific....flew many miles to engage in smashing out Jap flyers out of the doing so they run out fuel, had to land they landed on the first carrier they come too....regardless if that carrier had a flight deck loaded with it's own how did they make room?

Well to make room for the 'fly boys'.....over the side was pushed Hellcats priced at $88,000 each, along with Helldivers costing $108,000....yes in deed....the deck crews went out on the deck, and pushed over planes to make room for the guys to land....there was never a question in doing what was needed to bring them boys home.

But that is not the only type of incident that took place to rescue "Boys of Blue" ....submarines risk 'life and limb' to go in close in lagoons to pick up not only one downed crew but sometimes several...going from one to the other in a matter of hours....they would have so many rescued pilots aboard they didn't have bunks for them and the crew....and some had to sleep "two to a bunk"....yep, I kid you not....and I don't mean "hot bunking"....I mean "two at the same time in a bunk"...  If you can imagine a "bunk" on a WW II sub...well folks it is barely big enough for one...let alone two.

Then there was one incident on board the USS Card....where as a rescued pilot got knocked overboard....a destroyer threw him a line...and then before they could get him out of the enemy sub came into the area....and the destroyer took off ....full tilt...  Well I don't have to tell you what this sailor on the end of this rope was going through.....he barely made it.

Well I could go on and on here about these rescue attempts but why do so..... I'll just direct you to my article and you can click on this title: BRING 'EM BACK ALIVE....NAVY STYLE  and link up directly ....and every one of them you read about will set you on the edge of your chair....and you in the hell did these guys do what they did??

Hope you enjoy the article

Saturday, November 20, 2010


In you've dabbled in reading many naval articles....especially where warships were named you become accustom to those "letters" that follow the name of the ship.  After awhile you get somewhat educated on just what some of those letters refer too......such as a DD, DE, CL,...etc..etc...and the list travels on for a few pages. 

Well this article that I'm about to spring on you is about a group of vessels that you may be unfamiliar with.....and the letters at the end of the name you've not seen before....reason is not much was ever broadcasted about these 'corks in the water.'  But, if you were on an assualt ship that was involved in a WW II landing on one of the Pacific Islands....and your particular landing ship got hit with 'incoming'....and you were the were sure glad to see these guys......they could and did save 100's of lives.  Hospital ships were not always available in these mass landing assualts.....they couldn't be in the mix someone had to get in....get the 100's of wounded out of the well as have expert medical help to treat the wounded and care for the dying as well....not a pleasant experience.

They were I.D ed as PCE (R)......Yes!!! they were the "Navy Seagoing Ambulances".....this is a story that will drive home what these guys went through to help others.  I call this a 'grey story' but one that needs to be told.
If you'd care to give this a read.....just click on this title: THE DECKS RAN RED!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Battle of Mobile Bay Aug. 5, 1864
You can go to any library in any city or town and find book after book describing the beginnings....and ending of "The Civil War"....and all the battles inbetween, so can I say, "Yes, much has been written about the battles...the 'why's'....the 'what-if's'....and what 'should-have-happened.'

Did you know...or do you realize it was America's down right uglyest war?  Also I mean to tell you the blood of those killed run "shoe top deep" across our nation. 

If you pick up any of the above library books that I referred to'll see it so noted in those books that more American's died in the Civil War than in WW II.  Oh yes ....I will agree the figures are somewhat inflated due to numbers being from 'both sites.'.....but they still were 'American's'  WoW!!!....just give that a moment to roll around in that 'grey matter'....that is alot of grief!!!

And just think...all of this took place on American you see 'Trauma" settled over our nation like a grey storm cloud in the dead of winter.

Inter-woven in this slaughter of Americans were naval forces.  Did these naval forces have an impact on the Civil War?  You bet they did.....both the timing and direction of this War was affected.....Hummmmmmmmmmmmmm....something to consider here.

Ok...this brings me to the article that may sort some of this all out for is a "two part" article, and both 'Links' are listed below.....hopefully it will be an informative well as an interesting article.  Just click on to 'open and read.


Thursday, November 11, 2010


This ole girl was the last of her kind...........and Ocean Going Fleet Tug that was somewhat of a "Jack-of-all-Trades."

If you happen on to any old salts of todays world an quiz them about this ole girl...they'll probable say she was remembered as the retired Coast Guart Cutter "Tamaroa."   But if your ever in an old waterfront bar....and happen on to an old WW II salt, buy him a beer or two and start up a conversation about the "Tamaroa"....he'll probable recall her as the Fleet Tug USS "Zuni (ATF-85)."

So you see she was just one of those vessels that somewhat "wore a few hats" in her day.  A bit colorful I'd fact she even had a crew that was just as colorful as she was....  There is a story going around that one of her crew went on 'liberty' one night....had a few too many....came back to the ship and for some reason...[I will not go into it in great detail on this lead-in]....opened a valve...flooded the ole girl and she was laying over on her side the very next of those crewmen that couldn't handle his beer I venture to say.

Well anyway if you'd care to give this one a read...and see what her wanderings were....all you have to do is just click on this: USCGCT TAMAROA (WMEC-166)  and I do believe you'll be in for a pleasant reading surprise.

Hope you enjoy the article.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


Ah....Yes....Ship graveyards....a divers dream come true!!!  These graveyards are worldwide....and actually came about by numerous events.

The photo above is somewhat of a rare color pic of Test Baker, which many know is connected to the "Bikini Atoll,"....a most famous gravesite.  This is actually where we (the U.S.) demonstrated to everyone concerned....especially Russia..... just how nasty a nuclear bomb could be.

Now I will not go into any great detail here on the 'lead-in'  of this article.  Some of it you may well know about, some of you may not know about....but I still find it interesting to refresh the memory every now and then on just what did take place on one of the most famous man-made graveyards.

This is not a long article....about 5 or 6 pages...but if you are wanting a short read, before you have to get up from the breakfast table to 'walk-the-dog'....well you may want to take a gander at this one.
You can link to the article by clicking on this title: BIKINI ATOLL'S MAN-MADE GRAVEYARD

Hope you enjoy!!


Tuesday, November 9, 2010


I'm sure your mind is wondering just a tad at how the above picture relates to the 'title,' and to the subject matter that this 'blog' of mine normaly cranks out.....well let me provide you with just a 'taste' of this particular article ...then you can decide from there if you want to devote any time to 'give it a read.'

The SS Mormacsea, which was a merchant freighter, was laying dockside in Trondheim, Normay in the early morning of April 9th, 1940.

The Captain, Master William McHale, and her crew were all snuggled down in there bunks enjoying the few remaining minutes of a good nights sleep when a few of these sleepy souls, including the Captain, was awakened by the noise of serveral aircraft circling the ship..........Whoa!!!...what is going on here??

Well just about the time the Captain decided to get up....grab his pants and make himself presentable to the 'masses'...he was notified that a German cruiser was pulling into this same harbor....and low and behold the same cruiser was asking permission to pull along side the Mormacsea.  Now, this made Captain McHale just a tad say the least.

Once the German cruiser was secured along side the Mormacsea her captain came aboard and greeted Captain McHale.....he explained that 2,000 Nazi troops had just landed and now occupied the port of well as surrounding countryside.

The German Captain wanted to make it very clear to Captain McHale that Germany had no quarrel with the U.S. or any of her merchant vessels....he and the troops were only there to protect the Norwegians against a British he could rest easy.

The reason Captain McHale was just a tad more than 'uneasy' with all of such an early hour on this morning was.....unknown to the Germans at the times was the $4,500,000 of gold ingots buried deep in the hold of the SS Mormacsea...that held 800 tons of peat.....of which was actually headed for the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

So...immediately what was running through Capatin McHale's mind....." in the hell am I going to get this 'cargo' out of 'Dodge?????"

Well so now you know how gold ingots has a "headline" in this article....well if you'd care to give this one a going over....just click on this title: DARING ESCAPE OF THE SS MORMACSEA 
Hope you enjoy the article

Saturday, November 6, 2010


The ST-1

With the development of aircraft some of the 'thinkers' in the high levels of the U.S. Navy had some thoughts on how to use these new devices in the quest of sea power.  'Sea Power' always being referred too as "the best weapon" well as the 'best way to deliver that weapon'.....and so the 'Naval Brass' put "two and two" together..."How about the airplane and the torpedo??"

Hmmmmmmmmm....sounds like a heck of an idea to me.  Well along about 1917 or so there was some test done with a Curtiss R-6 float biplane, but these so called test were not as successful as was hoped for.

What the tests brought to the forefront was for a successful drop....the speed and altitude would have to be carefully monitored to ensure that the torpedo was entering the water at the right angle.....otherwise it would skip in and out of the water.  Also the airplane itself had to have the muscle to carry this "giant cigar shaped" the idea the 'Brass' had was a good one....but they lacked the tools of delivery of this weapon.

So the hunt was on for this "tool"...the one airplane that could 'do it all'.......  Well here is where Mr. William Bushnell Stout came into the picture.  Ole Stout had his nose in alot of designing of anything mechanical....engines, motorcycles, model planes, and 'yes' even automobiles....and then all of sudden he got bitten by the bug of 'aeronautics.'

This article is about Mr. Stout building his airplanes....and one in as to sell to the U.S. Navy as the "tool" to deliver the the proper manner.....but he wasn't alone ...there were many that had the same idea.  Anyway, Mr. Stout done his thing....and if you are interested in Naval History...this article may enlighten you on what took place.....and was Mr. Stout successful?....and where did he end up in this quest for a new tool in the delivery system of the torpedo?

If you'd care to give this article a 'going over'....just click on this title: MR. STOUT'S TORPEDO-BOMBER

Hope you enjoy

Friday, November 5, 2010



U-805 surrenders off Portsmouth, New Hampshire

The term "GRUPPE SEEWULF" somewhat of an unfamiliar term to most....but if you mention it too those in the 'know' in the higher ranks of the U.S. referred to "Hilter's planned U-boat attack on the East Coast of the U.S."

Six German U-boats was to form up on April 14th, 1945 just north of the Azores....this 'Group' was to be known as "Gruppe Seewulf."  There was generally described was to sweep across the North Atlantic convoy routes in order to draw some of the American Hunter-Killer Groups from British coastal waters.

The U.S. Navy got word of this "Group" they formed two lines of ships in the expected path of this 'group' heading for the U.S. East Coast......because the Navy had figured the "Gruppe Seewulf's" mission was to fire V-2 rockets from towed launching pads on too the U.S. coast.

So the push was on to stop this 'group' ....and 'stop them they did.'

This article is about the sinking, capture, and surrender of these six well as some details on how events lead up to this event.
If you think you'd care to give this 8 or 9 page the way there is some excellent pictures imbedded in the article.....just click on this title: GRUPPE SEEWULF

Hope you enjoy

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


From time to time individuals that find and casually read a few of my Naval & Nautical articles will send me pictures, videos as well as documents that they happen onto during their searches of the net or in their visits to their local library.

In any regard I normally look it over and if I find it appropriate I'll offer to share what they send to my readers or anyone that is interested in this sort of material, and this is the case with the following video....

A Mr. Highton sent me this short video....which demonstrates the awesome power of the modern day torpedo.  In Mr. Highton's e-mail to me....he also sent the following text:


Torpedo practice shot

This is an Australian Navy submarine doing a live torpedo practice shot on one of Australia's de-commissioned frigates. It used a Mk 48 torpedo developed in the USA. It is non-nuclear and not a contact weapon. It is designed to go off directly underneath the ship at about 50 feet under the keel. The effect is devastating as you can see from the video.

Quite an amazing display of 'hogging' and 'sagging' on the poor frigate's structure as well!


Just 'click' on the 'forward arrow' to 'run' the video....and make sure your speakers are turned up.

If anyone wishes this particular video 'sent' to their personal e-mail 'inbox'...just send me your mailing address and I'll be glad to reply with the video attached.
Hope you enjoy this interesting video!!

Monday, November 1, 2010



A fantastic Allied intelligence coup quickly sealed the fate of all ten Hitler's all-important submersible U-tankers.
The signal was short and terse.  U-66 was dangerously low on fuel and in dire need of a doctor for a seriously injured crewman.  It's captain urgently wanted to know if there was a "milk cow" in the area - a supply sub that could render medical air and provide fuel.  The replay from Germany was a somber "nichts."  There had been on word from the milk cow assigned to that area of the mid-Atlantic for some time.  Headquarters had to assume the worst.  U-488 had disappeared without a trace; overdue and presumed lost.  The ninth of ten supply submarines sunk, she had vanished in the North Atlantic while trying to provide vitally needed provisions, fuel and torpedoes to German U-boats in mid-ocean rendezvous.

Unable to secure fuel to carry on its partrol, nor able to help a dying sailor because she carried no doctor.  U-66 had no choice but to cease its partol and return to Germany.  With her departure there was one less German U-boat for the Allied sub-hunters to be concerned with; one less torpedo-firing menace able to send an allies ship to the bottom.  But if fate of U-488 was an unconfirmed suspicion to the German High Command, its status was no secret to the U.S. Navy's Tenth Fleet, nor the hunter-killer group of destroyer escorts built around the escort carrier USS Croatan (CVE-25).  On that balmy 26th of April 1944, .........U-488 met a swift demise.

Above is the lead-in of how the U.S. detected the "Milk Cows"....and come to realize if we can get rid of the "supply source" to the U-boats....we can cripple them to the point of having to limp back to home base...and in the process being more vulnerable to complete destruction.

Ok folks....if you wish to give this one a can get to the article by clicking on this title:  SLAUGHTERED "MILK COWS"

Hope you enjoy!!


Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Oh my goodness!!! never heard of the USS Recruit, and her being at dock side at "Union Square" in New York??

Well 'your not alone' if you have never heard of the above. 
Back in 1917 we Americans found ourselves at war with Kaiser Wilhelm's Imperial Germany....and we needed 'recruits'.....big time!!!  All around the nation quota's was set for acquire the men to fight in this first European War, and low and behold the 'quota's' were not being met.  As an example: New York had an assigned goal of 2,000 men....and only come up with 900 enlistments.  So some 'brain storming' had to be done to raise the number of enlistments.

Well New York City's flamboyant and imaginative mayor, John Purvoy Mitchel got involved.....and take a gander on what his idea was.....and believe it or not.....IT WORKED!!!!

This is just a short little article on some Naval History you may not be aware of if I've tickled your interest....and if you want to take a few minutes to read the can do so by clicking on this title: THE BATTLESHIP THAT INVADED UNION SQUARE

Hope you enjoy the article

Sunday, October 24, 2010


This particular Navy warrior started her ship life in a strange manner ---and her life ended in tragedy----not only for the vessel herself, but for her crew and crew's from other ships that attempted to help her.

The USS Princeton was actually laid down as a cruiser (CL) .....given the name "Tallahassee."  She came off the building blocks being reclassified as a carrier (CV)----but low and behold she was again reclassed just over a year later to a Small Aircraft Carrier (CVL-23).

The Princeton was a busy naval vessel, but when she hooked-up with carrier group TG 38.3 which was cruising off Luzon, she got into a world of hurt.

The ending to this story is not a joy to read....actually somewhat sad....but there again that is just all the more reason to read it if for no other reason than to learn how costly our freedom has been.

So if your interested in reading about this proud ship and her well as the ships and crews that attempted to help the Princetion in her time of need....just click on the title: SINKING OF USS PRINCETION (CVL-23).

Hope you enjoy the article

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


The United States Coast Guard is noted for many accomplishments, but foremost in the public’s mind is the Service’s efforts in helping those "in peril upon the seas." Indeed, all of the various federal agencies that were brought together to form the modern day United States Coast Guard dealt in some manner with assisting those that were in distress or in helping the prevention of loss of life at sea.

The U.S. Lighthouse Service, for example, maintained lighthouses and sea markers to warn ships from danger. Lighthouse keepers also helped people who were in danger close to their stations. Each year the annual reports of the Service were filled with the accounts of keepers saving lives. The cutters of the U. S. Revenue Cutter Service assisted mariners in distress offshore. The Service began winter cruising, in 1831, to provide rescue craft when sailing ships were most likely to run afoul of bad weather. The Steamboat Inspection Service was established in 1838 in an effort to prevent disasters before they occurred. Despite the many accomplishments of these agencies, the organization that contributed the most to the U.S. Coast Guard’s image as a lifesaver was the U.S. Life-Saving Service. It is important that the story of this Service be detailed, for many of the U.S. Coast Guard’s procedures in search and rescue can be traced to this small service.

So...if your 'into' naval history, ...and if your like me, what I know...just generates more interest...well you just may wish to give this article a 'tumble'....I'd have to say it is pretty darn interesting

The above is the lead in to the article...if you wish to give it a go....just click on this title: A SERVICE OF SAVING LIVES  it will take you immediately to the article, and I don't believe you'll be disappointed....if you are...well then leave me a comment or e-mail me, as do the same if you liked it....I'd appreciate it.

Hope you enjoy!

Monday, October 11, 2010


LAUNCHED DEC.,1959--LOST MAY 22, 1968

Somewhat of a mystery .....yes still to this day not all the answers are forth coming as to really what caused the USS Scorpion (SSN-589) to just vanish.

Many things were talked about...."Did a torpedo explode....or maybe a faulty valve of some sort.....there was talk of some sort of flooding problem??"  But I don't think nobody really knows.  It also was reported that she sunk like a 'sinker on a fishing pole' down to over 10,000 ft (plus)....well if that was the case she was crushed like a tin can.....

Then there was some discussion of a Soviet destroyer and an ECHO-II class sub being in the general area when the Scorpion disappeared.....hummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm that certain is interesting as well.

Well if you wish to give this subject some additional reading I have my version and my comments about all of can 'link' up to the article by clicking on this title: LOST OF THE USS SCORPION (SSN-589).

Hope you enjoy the article

Friday, October 8, 2010



I'm sure most of you, if not all, recall many, many issues in and around the "Cold War" somewhere in the neighborhood of early 1968 and into early 1969....yeah kind of an ugly time wasen't it?  Some actually refer to that time period as the "Shot-Less" war.

Now....inter-mixed in this "Cold War" era was a couple of icon names I'm sure that when I mention them they are going to jump out at about: USS PUEBLO AND COMMANDER PETE BUCHER?

Yep, I'm sure you're saying, "Oh yes I do remember that incident."

Well I have a 'short article' on what took place....kind of like a refresher article on what actually happened and how it all ended up.

So...if you'd care "remind" yourself on what went on when this 'incident' did take can click on this title: REQUIEM FOR A HERO  and it will take you to the article for a short read while your enjoying your coffee and a tad of coffee cake.

Hope you enjoy the article.

Saturday, October 2, 2010


In her colorful 30-year career, this hard-steaming passenger liner played many roles and performed each with the flair and aplonb of the pedigree that had been built into her.

During the first two years of WW II, before the United States was drawn in by the attack on Pearl Harbor, a Canadian ship conducted many operations that would son be done by American ships. Although we were officially neutral at the time, Americans would have been pleased with the actions of this ship, had we known more about what she was doing. These activities included such things as patrolling the coast of North America, capturing a potential supply ship with ties to a German raider, taking German agents off an American liner at sea, and looking for survivors of the first American merchant ship sunk after Pearl Harbor.

The ship was the “Prince Robert” which, over the course of more than 30-years, served in a variety of roles under the Maple Leaf flag. She began life during the depression years as a civilian coastal liner for Canadian National Steamship in northwestern waters, after which she served as a cruise ship to the West Indies. When war came along, she became His Majesty’s Canadian Ship “Prince Robert,” an armed merchant cruiser. After the war, she was an immigrant ship for several years, carrying emigres to and from Europe, and finally closed out her distinguished career as a passenger liner under the Italian flag. you'd really like to know more about this old girl wouldn't you...well...all you have to do is 'click' on this title: PRINCE ROBERT  and this will link you up to the article...and if I must say so myself this is a pretty neat ship...and she has an impressive history.

Hope you enjoy the article.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


DID YOU KNOW...Early in WW II...the Navy had a 'brain storm" to modify three new Fletcher-class destroyers to carry catapult-launched seaplanes.....???

Actually the Seaplane idea came from an idea that did come about back in the 20's when destroyers were more or less just overgrown torpedo boats and airplanes were covered in doped linen.  So 'somebody' got the hair-brained idea to bring out the same idea in 1943 and give it another 'go.'...but actually it was again doomed to fail...but it was tried on three Fletcher-class destroyers.

Well the truth be known...the talk was that FDR himself....thought up this scheme due to the fact that these relative new 'Fletcher' destroyers were faily fast on there comparison to a cruiser or battleship.

Also when you read this article you need to keep in mind that ole FDR he really liked his warships, and in fact usually occupied special quarters aboard a heavy cruiser when he was out and about in visiting America's wartime Allies.....and so in this 'scheme of things' a seaplane would be a pretty neat thing to carry VIPs, like himself away from trouble in case a cruiser was disabled or in trouble in any manner....

So....this article will give you some idea of the history of this 'idea' that involved three destroyers...USS Pringle (DD-477), USS Stevens (DD-479), and USS Halford (DD-480)......and show you just how 'unacceptable' this idea was to the crews of these vessels.

Ok...well if I've tickled your 'Interest' in this tad of U.S. Navy history...and if you wish to give this 8 or so pager a 'look see' all you have to do is click on this title:  DESTROYERS WITH WINGS   and it will take you right to this screwed up attempt to put seaplanes on destroyers.

Hope you enjoy


Saturday, September 25, 2010



The unsung hero's of the attack on Hitler's Fortress Europe
"Thirty Words that Changed the World"

On 12 February 1944, just over 60 years ago, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, Commander of Supreme Headquarters, Allied Expeditionary Forces (SHAEF), fresh from a strategic meeting with President Roosevelt of the USA and Prime Minister Winston Churchill of the United Kingdom was given a cryptic 30 word order. “You will enter the continent of Europe and, in conjunction with the other United Nations, undertake operations aimed at the heart of Germany, and the destruction of her armed forces.” - there could be no mistaking this order as being anything other than the much hoped for massive assault on what had become known as the Atlantic Wall, Fortress Europe, or in Nazi propaganda the impenetrable wall of Festung Europa.  Of course, the Allies had already pieced various other corners of Hitler’s Festung Europa - up through Italy, and by this point in the war, the Soviet Armies were quickly moving forward rather than falling back along the Eastern front.

Ok folks the above is the 'lead-in' to this next article....if you think it is a subject that you'd care to read more about....all you have to do is click on this title: OPERATION NEPTUNE OVERLORD   and it will take you right to the 8 or so pages that describes it all.

Hope you enjoy the article.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Even when ships at sea are not 'at war' there is always a danager lurking, and that is why there are 'drills upon drills' in "What-to-do 'IF'".
Below is the "Lead-in" paragraph to the article that not only describes what happen on one such incident.....there is also dianamtic pictures that is actually shocking.
Carrier-escort collisions during flight operations are one of the most prevalent accidents as sea. The probability of this type of accident is greatly enhanced during night operations as it’s the overall damage to the ships and loss of personnel. On the evening of November 22, 1975, the missile cruiser USS Belknay (CG-26) collied with the USS John F. Kennedy (CV-67) in the Ionian Sea 68 miles east of Sicily. The result was predictable. The Belknap was very nearly destroyed and the carrier emerged with minor damage. This was not the first accident of this nature nor will it be the last. In the late night of April 26, 1952, the USS Hobson (DMS-26) was literally run over by the carrier USS Wasp (CV-18) and sliced in half. Both halves of the destroyer minesweeper quickly sank with 176 of her 237-man crew. Most were asleep and died immediately. Similarly, the destroyer USS Frank E. Evans (DD-754) was cut in half by the Australian aircraft carrier Melbourne (R-21) on June 2, 1969, while on exercises in the early morning hours. In less than two minutes the bow section containing 74 men slid under the Pacific. In both instances the primary blame rested on destroyer officers who were not fully attentive to the hazards of operating in close quarters with fast ships that are many times larger less responsive.

Ok....if you haven't read about the above misshap that occured in Nov. 1975 between the John F. Kennedy and the may wish to click on this "title:"  ON A COLLISION COURSE

This will open your eyes at just how dangerious it is in operations when ships are in close situations....and how quickly situation can go deadly wrong!!!

Hope the article is informative and provides some insight of the ever present danager that is always present at sea.

Sunday, September 19, 2010


Yes Sir.....Mr. Daniel K. Ludwig....he made his mark as a "Super Tanker" builder, and he was darn good at doing what he knew best.

Actually Daniel Ludwig started at a very young age in his first nautical the age of nine he bought a sunken 26-ft boat....raised that darn thing...repaired it....and chartered it for twice what he paid for it.

As he got older he broadened his scope of business ventures as far as the shipping trade goes.  He had a few ships in and around the 1920's that were hauling lumber and barrel staves....which he was doing "ok" at...but he heard that hauling oil was where the money was really he got involved in hauling oil for the U.S. Navy.

Well one thing led to another....more oil needed to be hauled, so bigger ships needed to be leased or acquired why not build them?

So Daniel Ludwig got involved in building tankers....and he also studied the 'system'...and got to understand the Merchant Fleet Corp. (MFC)..which was a division of the U.S. Dept. of Commerce...once he done his 'homework' Mr. Ludwig knew how to "play" the system to purchase ships, sell them, and how to take parts from one ship and apply to another...  Believe me Mr. Ludwig took advantage of every 'corner' to enhance his companies...which all were connected with 'building tankers.' 

At the height of his career...Mr. Daniel K. Ludwig had an estimate wealth of $1.2 billion dollars....and it was all due to his "Knowing How to Play the System" of Government and his own Private Shipping Company.

So if you'd care to get some insight on how the government and the private shipping companies 'wheeled and dealed' this would be an excellet article to take a gander at, and the leader of these guys was Mr. Daniel K. Ludwig.

If you 'click' on this title:  MR. DANIEL K. LUDWIG  it will take you right to the article....

Hope you enjoy!!

Thursday, September 16, 2010


             "THE "BOOM BOYS"
          THE UNSUNG HEROES!!!  
Few knew what they did and even fewer knew why.  They labored around the clock performing the most underrrated of all wartime tasks - protecting warships at anchor by keeping the harbor defenses secure.

These guys on thse 'funny' looking ships ...the ships with the "horns" coming out of the bow.....they were the men of the "Net Navy"...a select group of rugged individualists whose sole unheralded purpose was to open, close, rig, and maintain the underwater steel nets....that kept out the subs....and torpedoes.

Laying these 'nets' so as the protected ships and her crews could 'rest easy' was not a light hearted an outsider....or to a new recruit 'net laying' was a took seamanship and a "marline-spike" type of sailor to work with the blocks, tackles, knots and splicing of this whole involved task.

Actually anti-submarine nets were used in WW I.  The British strung 600-mi of steel netting across 85 of their harbors and bases all over the world.  The British called them "Boom Defenses"....and the word "Boom" in British terminology includes protection both surface adn underwater attack.  Those men in England that tended the highly efficient nets were affectionately known as "Boom Boys."

This article provides you with some insight into just what these vessels and there crews could do....history of the "Booms" or "Net Laying"....also a tad of info on where they trained the sailors that kept the ships safe from those underwater "tin-fish."

If I've generated some interest ....well you may wish to give this 13 page a going over.  If you click on this red title: THE BOOM BOYS OF THE NET NAVY   it will take you right to the article....hope you enjoy the read....and if you'd care to comment....please do!!!