Wednesday, August 31, 2011


This ole girl was coming out of Cape Town....with a cargo of Chrome Ore, some hides and coffee.....when she and a few other ships were being watched by the German Sub U-172....

The U-172 let loose with two torpedoes...that did in fact connect with the Chickasaw City...and damage was so extensive that this ole girl sank in under five minutes...but that is only the beginning of what this crew suffered....

If you wish to give this short history a go...just click on the link below


Never as well publicized as its counterpart Royal Air Force, Britain's Naval Air Arm nevertheless made its presence felt in every major action of the sea war.

One of the great paradoxes of the 1939-1945 Naval war was that while Great Britain had pioneered development of the aircraft carrier in WW I and thereafter built an imposing fleet of carriers, it entered World War II with only 242 Naval aircraft - not one of which was considered of modern design. A deplorable condition obviously no accident, the reality was that Britain’s Naval aviation had been allowed to totally languish ever since its operational control had been taken from the Navy and given to the Royal Air Force in 1919.

A move intended as an economy measure and organizational consolidation transformed
Naval aviation into an operational fiasco which would reverberate throughout the British Empire.

This is a rather lengthy article.....describing this group of brave men...there little known accomplishments and devotion to their country

It is a "TWO PART" article......hope you find it interesting and informative.

Saturday, August 27, 2011


At a Time when all the world held the battleship in awe, the new KENTUCKY was said to be "the worst crime in naval construction ever perpetrated by the white race."
White Fleet to World War one. KENTUCKY indeed had a checkered career.

During the 200-year history of the United States, the Navy has carried on its rolls of commissioned vessels only one ship named Kentucky. This was the pre-dreadnaught battleship Kentucky (BB-6) laid down in 1896, authorization for her construction being provided in the Naval Appropriation Bill of 2 March 1895.

The contract awarded to Newport News Ship Building Company called for two ship with  length of 375-ft 4-in, a beam of 72-ft 3-in, and displacing not over 11, 540 tons. Armament was to consist of four 13-in, four 8-in, and 14 5-in guns plus numerous 6- and 1-pounders and four 18-in torpedoes. The Ships were to be twin-screwed and capable of reaching 16 knots. The lead ship of the class was assigned the name Kearsarge (BB-5) and the sistership the name Kentucky (BB-6).

With due ceremony the hulls of both ship were laid down on 30 June 1896, at Newport News. It was to be almost two years later before the ships were to touch water in the first and only twin launching of two capital ships in the world.  The launching of the ships at Newport News on 24 March 1898, Was witnessed by on of the largest crowds ever gathered for a ship launching. Many Kentuckians were in attendance as special excursion trains had been run from Louisville, Lexington, and Cincinnati to Newport News by the Chesapeake Ohio Railroad.

Well let me tell you folks....this was just the start of the "Kentucky" having a "Checkered Career."  So if your into a lengthy read....well then this article is for you.  Just click on the below title:



The shortage of steel in WW I prompted the Government to build cargo ships out of wood, a costly program that created a billion-dollar boondoggle.
This is not a story that many people realize took place.....oh yes, I am aware this all took place before many of us even knew what this world was all about

This era was not all that good in and around 1914 as far a U.S. was concerned...due to the fact that export cargo's were building up.....and there was no available ships to get this cargo overseas....yes it was one heck of a problem.

Well the Government stepped in and passed some emergency legislation under the U.S. flag for operation in the foreign trade.

Well I could go on and on here but I'm not going to do that...the end result was a huge upsurge in ship construction of over 2300 companies that had never in there life put together a ship....well you will not believe how all this turned out.

So if you're in for a tad of enlightenment on Navy and shipping history...well you may wish to give this article a glance....not a long article....(1) fairly full glass of wine should do the trick...or maybe (it is a two beer story)...

If I've got your interest "up"...well this is how you can pop it on the ole computer screen with one hand while your sipping the "juice of the vine" with the other...

Hope you enjoy and find it interesting

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Months before Pearl Harbor the Navy began design studies that envisioned a quartet of giant new carriers intended to improve on the then-building Essex-class.  The result would be the 45,000-ton Midway-class, the largest warships ever built for the U.S. Navy.
The 'Big-Wigs' ....or the Naval planners was in a heated debate of a new project....  They were given a mandate to conceive a giant new class of battle carrier.  You see the old 'battlewagons' were a 'thing of the past' sort of thing.  The battleships were far, far too expensive...and on top of that it with aviation coming into play at an ever increasing rate....we needed a new "muscle man" to lead the charge.

Oh my yes!!!! it was a heated was darn near as heated a discussion as the temp was in Washington  on these 'dog day days'......  The problem was no two people could agree on what road to travel....they were as one would say, "All over the damn map."

Oh they all knew they need a "NEW CARRIER"...there was no doubt in there minds on that....but not one of them could agree with this steamy summer of 1941 on how to configure these 45,000-ton vessels. here is the deal Mr. you can probably guess this is going to be a 'lengthy' fact it is in 'Two Parts' if you don't have enough wine, or if you prefer the amber liquid of beer..[hey love the stuff myself]...I would suggest you have the wife go out and purchase enough to get you through this.

All kidding is lengthy and it my opinion...pretty darn why wouldn't I say that..I'm the one that banged it out!!!!!

So....just click on the "Part I or Part II" of the article and I sure hope you enjoy....
If you don't well I'll list my e-mail address and you can sure let me know.


I really do hope you find the article interesting up to my earlier statement of..." If you don't enjoy...please let me know" here is my e-mail and "Please don't hesitate to comment"....always grateful to hear positive or negative from readers.


The USS Mississinewa (AO-59).....all that knew her well she was nicknamed "The Miss."  Actually she was one heck of a ship....she had accumulated four....yep heard right...(4)  Battle Stars since her commissioning on May 18, 1944.

Now she was no 'Cork in the water' mind you...she was 553-ft long...25,425-ton auxiliary oiler....and she was manned by about 278 enlisted sailors...and 20 officers.

On the morning of November 20th, 1944 the "Miss" was in the waters of Ulithi a lazy manner swing  on her anchor......Well on that day she didn't swing at her anchor very this story unfolds it is apparent she was hit by one of Japan's new weapons.....

I'm going to leave the intro at that....if you wish to find out more I'll invite you to give my article a going over....this is not an extremely long article....but if you wish to relax just a tad this afternoon with a glass of wine...[well if your a slow reader...or a fast sipper....maybe two glasses is more like it]....I think you'll be entertained with an interesting story.

Just click on the title below and she'll jump right out at you...

Enjoy your day and your glass or glasses of wine


Your first step in the U.S. Navy is most generally what was referred to as "boot camp"....and in most cases it was a "night-mare' of transforming from "your way to the Navy way"...but, eventually you came around to took awhile....but it did get accomplished.

Then it was onto least for most of us....a ship....big, medium, or those corks in the water....and if you were real lucky you got 'sub duty' which I truly loved!!!

Anyway...there you are out there riding those waves....Ah...what a feeling!!!!  Then one evening you hear the word come over the speaker system....button up the hatches, and get ready for 'Foul Weather".   Well to all you land lubbers this is when the "Newbee" sailor suddenly realizes that whatever his job is in this type of foul weather....he better do it well.....reason is....this is his happy home and if this "home" suddenly does not float anymore.....he himself is in deep, deep trouble.

So...this article is about the connection between ship and sailor....and nothing brings this out more that what took place at Pearl Harbor.  When something like that takes place....your ship goes down...everything is affects.  Where do you go to eat and sleep??

Do you realize that sailors from the USS Nevada had to beg, borrow or steal food...when they did actually find some stew they ate it out of there hand.

This article will provide you with some insight into what this connection is between ship and sailor....and it don't matter if your talking about a crewmen....officer...or the old man himself.

It is a short article that can probable be read with one good cup of coffee
Click on title if you wish to read

Hope you enjoy the article


A worn-out troopship donated hundreds of parts to other ships being restored as floating memorials.

Now you can say what you want about these old 'troopships'....and if you've ever been on one I'm sure you have some pretty harsh words of the living conditions on these floating buckets of iron.....but this old girl she stayed in a "giving mood" even in her retirement years.

Alot of people that visit the ship museums in the U.S. don't realize that to fix up these ships of war you have to gather parts from someplace....I think most of us just "take it for granted that what they are seeing just came that way".....well hate to burst your bubble folks....but there is one heck of alot of work to get these rust buckets in shape for all of use to even begin a "walk through."

Any is a short article that provides the reader with somewhat of an 'overview' of how all these museum ships get well as how 'mother natures wild life' ...can actually slow down the process the point of "stopping" the salvage of these retired warships.

So if you'd care to give it a go.....just click on the title below

Hope you enjoy the article

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


In one of the most incredible episodes of WW I, 28 English sailors braved teeming African heat and enemy ambush to carry two small gunboats on their backs to halt Germany's Naval domination of strategically vital Lake Tanganyika.

Tell you what folks this is one very awesome article.....its a long one...about 14 or so pages...and you'll be bowled over on what these guys did to get a gunboat from point A to point B....and it was all tugging and pulling through a dense jungle.

If you think you want to give this a go....just click on the below title:

Monday, August 22, 2011


If you'd care to read the Newsletter that was produced every two weeks from the California Shipyard...just click on the below link:

Hope you enjoy


The Thumbnail story

Hope you enjoy the tad of history.

Sunday, August 21, 2011


What you are viewing above is the remnants of the Liberty ship SS Josiah G. Holland....but at the time of the above photo she had been sailing under the Greece Flag and had been renamed Ekaterini G.

I have always been interested in what had happened to some of the Liberty ships...especially the ones that went into commercial use...most generally connected to other nations. This is what happened to the Josiah G. Holland. For the most part I am in awe of how long they continued to be useful to there owners after the war.

The Josiah G. Holland was built at the California Shipbuilding Corp.....her keel was laid on August 14th, 1943, and she got her first taste of sea water on September 17th 1943.

She was a tanker that was actually operated by American Republic Corp. This particular Liberty ship was named after the Journalist Josiah G. Holland (1819 - 1881) whom was editor of the Springfield Republican, Scribner’s Monthly and the Century Magazine.

After the Josiah G. Holland got a taste of the sea....she was involved in many, many convoys [an if anyone wishes to see the listing of the convoys she was involved in....just e-mail me and I’ll be glad to send the list to your in-box.... Or ] but her WW II sea life came to a halt on August 16th, 1946....and she entered the Mobile Reserve Fleet.

But low and behold she was withdrawn on February 18th 1948....and in April of that same year was sold to Phoenix Steamship Corp....renamed Cygnet III and sailed under the U.S. flag. Well I guess she was seen as a good enough working vessel so in 1949 she was converted to a dry cargo vessel at Baltimore, Maryland.

She was put up for sale in the early 50's and purchased by Piamonte Cia. Nav., S.A. and renamed Batsi....and sailed under the Panama Flag, but this company did keep her all that long she was  again sold in 1954 to San Gregorio Cia. Nav., S.A. renamed Ekaterini G. She still remained to sail under the Panama Flag.

For some reason that I don’t know about she was ‘Re-flagged’ in 1955 ...kept the same name as above, but sailed under the Liberia Flag.  She was sold again in 1961 to Importers Shipping Corp.....kept the same name, but was now sailing under the Greece Flag.

Now let me tell you folks this lady really gets around.

Ok....this ole girl is just about to the end of her rope.....on 10/17/65 on a voyage from Niigata, Japan to the U.S. West Coast in ballast she lost her propeller in rough weather 700 miles north of Midway Island. She was taken in tow by the USS Tawakoni, she came adrift in a storm arriving at the Aleutian Islands to await an additional tug. She Grounded on Great Sitkin Island, twenty miles from Adak, her bottom was torn off, plating and decks buckled and fractured. Salvage attempts were abandoned and she was declared a total loss.

And the top picture is what she looked like after abandonment.

She served her owners well....22 + years....that is pretty darn good in my book


Author: Bud Shortridge

The ship photo and the commissioning photo was furnished to me by Mr. William Layton.

Saturday, August 20, 2011


Guns, gold and opium marked the highlights of the wooden-hulled Portland's checkered career.  Seen above ice-bound in Northern Alaska where she earned her greatest fame, she is today remembered as the ship which brought word of the discovery of gold in the Klondike to the "lower 48" in 1897.  After plying Alaskan waters for 13-years carrying miners and supplies to and from the gold fields, Portland struck a rock and had to be beached near the Katala River 50-mi southeast of Cordova.

Yes'er re-bob....anything that would float was used when that four letter word "GOLD" finally filtered down to the lower 48.  If you were an were looking for some means to get to those fabled gold fields....but to get from point "A" to point "B" one had to travel those treacherous inland rivers and streams....and from what I read gold or no gold I don't think I would be the first one on any of them vessels.

Anyway it you'd care to give it a going over and see what one had to do ....just to "think about" becoming a 'rich man'....I'm sure your going to be enlightened.

Just click on the link below and you'll have 9 or so pages of reading

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Though it lasted only nine suspenseful hours, 2007 marks the 20th anniversary of the largest sea battle the U.S. Navy fought since WW II.

Twenty years ago, the U.S. and Iranian Naval forces engaged in a 9-hr sea battle, the largest for the U.S. since World War II.

The battle was part of an unofficial Naval war between the U.S. and Iran for the control of the Persian Gulf.  This "Tanker War" began on 24 July 1987, as the U.S. Navy began escorting civilian tankers on orders from President Ronald Reagan.........

Ok that gives you a very brief idea on what this article you can make a decision if you wish to spend any time 'giving it a go.

If you happen to decide to give up a tad of computer time in reading can click on the below title to pop that puppy open and be in wonderment of what took place.

Thursday, August 11, 2011


The uneasy peace between VJ Day and the outbreak of the Korean War was a period of  austerity for the Pacific Fleet.  Funds and personnel were in short supply, and steaming time was curtailed.  By 1949, the fleet had been reduced to a dozen major combatants, which were infrequently deployed  In marked contrast to the inactivity of combat units a group of six ships were almost continuously steaming between San Francisco and the western Pacific.

These were the troopships of the Navy's 'Grey Line,' assigned to the Naval Transport Service.  These large and handsome ships ran a scheduled service between San Francisco, Pearl Harbor, Guam, Subic Bay, Yokohama and the China Coast.  As commissioned naval vessels manned by Navy crews, they were unquestionably the steaming queens of the West Coast, averaging 80% of their time at sea.

So...what was it like to be 'packed in' like a 'Sardine-in-a-can' heading back to the states on these huge 'troopships'?  Well I've heard good things and I've heard 'not-so-good' stories...but I'm sure what made most of the 'guest' smile was "I'm going I can endure anything"

Well here is a peek at how all this came about and the ships involved ...hope you enjoy the article:


Monday, August 8, 2011


Among the most extraordinary accomplishments of American submariners is the impressive victory of U.S. World War II Fleet Boats over the Japanese Navy and Merchant Marine.  While many books have been written describing this victory, few understand to what degree the U.S. Submarine Force gutted Japanese industrial and military strength during the Second World War.

The U.S. Pacific Submarine campaign had three major accomplishments. First, Japanese Merchant Marine losses crippled the ability of Japanese industry to generate military power.  Second, destruction of Japanese Merchant Marine and Naval forces significantly reduced the Japanese ability to project power throughout the vast Pacific. Third, use of the submarine enabled the U.S. Navy to take the offensive in Japanese-controlled waters and inflict disproportionate losses relative to the U. S. Investment in submarines.
Lets give this a ‘look-see’ and review the effects of the U.S. Submarine campaign on Japan. The implication for today’s military, heavily dependent on logistics for power projection should not be forgotten. Today, even with the impressive and growing ability of the U.S. Navy to effect land warfare, sea control still remains job number one.

Well I've showed you the 'intro' to the if I've teased you to the point of wanting to give this a read....just click on the below link

Hope you enjoy the article

Friday, August 5, 2011


By Lieutenant Commander Edgar D. Hoagland, U.S. Naval Reserve (Retired)
In spring 1945, as Allied forces prepared to advance from the Philippines to Borneo, PT boats were given the dangerous task of leading reconnaissance missions against Japanese-held islands.  The above author tells his story as a young PT boat commander in the waning day of the War in the Pacific.

This is a pretty good article folks....and I know I say this a lot...but this story pretty much puts you right on the boats themselves.......excellent article that I do recommend a going over.

Just click on the below title to read

Hope you enjoy!!!