Archive for June, 2012

Jun 26

U.S.S. Scorpion Artifact Vignette: Surgical Scissors

Tuesday, June 26, 2012 8:49 AM


“It is no small presumption to dismember the image of God.” -John Woodall (1556-1643) The Naval History and Heritage Command’s Underwater Archaeology Branch (UAB) has been conducting a multi-year investigation of a shipwreck in the Patuxent River believed to be War of 1812 vessel USS Scorpion. During the 2011 field season, several artifacts were recovered from the vessel’s hold including a pair of surgical scissors, SCORP-2011-53 (Figure 2). Previous investigation of the shipwreck in 1979 yielded another pair of surgical scissors, 99-69-AE (Figure 1). UAB has been conducting ongoing research to better understand the specific medical uses of these artifacts…. Read the rest of this entry »

Jun 26

The Navy Sails the Inland Seas

Tuesday, June 26, 2012 7:29 AM


Today marks the 53rd anniversary of the formal opening of the Saint Lawrence Seaway to seagoing ships. The Seaway is a 2,432 mile long international waterway consisting of a system of canals, dams, and locks. It provides passage for large oceangoing vessels into central North America, and has created a fourth seacoast accessible to the industrial and agricultural heartland of North America. To celebrate the opening of the Seaway, President Eisenhower and Queen Elizabeth II, along with twenty-eight Naval vessels, cruised from the Atlantic to the Great Lakes. 1,040 midshipmen, including the entire third class of midshipmen at the Naval… Read the rest of this entry »

Jun 21

Okinawa Operation

Thursday, June 21, 2012 9:51 AM


The Battle of Okinawa was the largest amphibious assault in the Pacific War of World War II. On June 21, 1945, after 82 days of battle, the Japanese troops were defeated. This was not intended to be the final major battle of World War II, only the staging ground for the Allied invasion of Japan. The ferocity of the fighting on Okinawa, combined with the massive number of casualties, forced American strategists to seek alternative means for ending the war, as the destruction on Okinawa would surely have paled in comparison to any invasion of the Japanese home islands. The following… Read the rest of this entry »

Jun 18

U.S. Declared War on Great Britain on June 18, 1812

Monday, June 18, 2012 1:00 AM


Today is the 200th anniversary of the U.S. declaration of war on Great Britain. Later known as the War of 1812, it began because of tension between the two nations over commerce restrictions and the impressment of American Sailors into the British Royal Navy. The war was concluded on February 18, 1815 with the Treaty of Ghent, which restored relations between the two nations with no territory loss for either. The following article, originally published in the November 1939 issue of Proceedings, shows the United States’ struggle with Great Britain over the issue of impressment. A Chapter From Genesis Of The… Read the rest of this entry »

Jun 15

Prelude to Saipan: 15 June 1944

Friday, June 15, 2012 1:00 AM


Saipan was an important strategic point for the Americans in the pacific theater. Gaining the island of Saipan, which is 1,300 miles from Japan, brought the war to the Japanese home islands. The May 1947 issue of Proceedings included an article written by Pete Zurlinden describing the atmosphere among the men as they prepared for the amphibious attack. PRELUDE TO SAIPAN: 15 JUNE, 1944 (A Stirring Hour Relived in History) By TECHNICAL SERGEANT PETE ZURLINDEN Marine Corps Combat Correspondent Saipan, Marianas Islands, 15 June, 1944­. This ship sleeps as we plow toward Saipan -just 1,250 miles directly south of Tokyo-­where… Read the rest of this entry »