Archive for the 'Books' Category

Apr 7

A Culture of Literacy and Scholarly Pursuits

Wednesday, April 7, 2010 11:52 AM


The US Navy has a deep rooted culture of literary and scholarly pursuits born out of the need for self-sufficiency. While at sea for months at a time with very little communication from home, naval officers had a need for a well rounded education to help make necessary decisions. World War II helped to further this tradition as many academics were pressed into military service. The tradition stretches from shipboard libraries in the early US Navy to those who have served in the Navy and went on to become authors and historians.  Writings range from tales of the sea and… Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 3

South to Java

Saturday, April 3, 2010 12:26 AM


  Twenty two years ago I was browsing a local bookstore when I happened upon a blue jacketed book with the exotic title of South to Java. Spying an old four stack destroyer profiled across the cover, I picked it up and when the inside cover revealed it was about an old navy destroyer caught up in the opening battles of the War in the Pacific and the vain attempt to stop the Japanese advances into the Dutch East Indies, it became my companion for the next few weeks. By the last chapter, I felt like I had sailed with the men of the fictional USS… Read the rest of this entry »

Mar 31

Navy Department Library Celebrates 210th Anniversary

Wednesday, March 31, 2010 9:05 AM


Today we are celebrating the Navy Department Library’s 210th Anniversary. Though the library has been relocated several times within Washington D.C., and undergone a few organizational changes we are proud to trace our roots to a letter dated 31 March 1800 from President John Adams to Secretary of the Navy Benjamin Stoddert. This letter directed him to establish a library that would contain “the best writing…on the theory and practice of naval architecture, navigation, gunnery….” From that beginning, the Library’s collections have grown to 156,000 books and tens of thousands of manuscripts, periodicals and government documents, with an emphasis on naval, military,… Read the rest of this entry »

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