Archive for the 'Marine Corps' Category

Nov 11

Ripley at the Bridge

Wednesday, November 11, 2015 12:01 AM


Charles Waterhouse’s painting depicts Captain John Ripley dangling from the bridge to thwart the advance of the North Vietnamese Army.

As a young man I was fascinated by a tale from ancient Roman history that told of a warrior whose courage was beyond all reason, yet was inspirational as an ideal worth trying to live up to. It is a story, often recounted by Roman authors and later preserved for English literature in a poem by Lord Macaulay that tells us of an Etruscan army marching on Rome, headed for a bridge across the Tiber River that, unless destroyed, would give the enemy access to the capital city itself. Their van will be upon us Before the bridge goes down;… Read the rest of this entry »

Oct 15

Navy on the Western Front: The 14″ Railway Guns in WWI

Thursday, October 15, 2015 4:00 AM


battery firing

With a clanking rumble and puffs of steam and smoke, the U.S. Navy rolled into Paris in September, 1918. Word of the Navy’s coming had been telegraphed beforehand, and jubilant and curious crowds gathered not on the Seine, but at the railways stations, to witness the spectacle: the Navy had arrived in its own specially-built train, trailing at its end a new gun to rival the Germans’ terrible Paris-Geschütz that had been lobbing death on the city since March. The effectiveness of the German long-range guns on the Western Front (those guns manned by their own German naval crews) convinced… Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 1

Operation Iceberg — Okinawa Invasion in 1945

Wednesday, April 1, 2015 1:33 PM


By Joshua L. Wick, Naval History and Heritage Command, Communication and Outreach Division Editor’s Note: The following photos tell just a brief story of the U.S. Navy’s involvement during the Okinawa Invasion and Battle of Okinawa. One of the unique items NHHC has in its archives is an oral history of Cmdr. Frederick J. Becton, commanding officer of destroyer USS Laffey (DD-724), which saw action during the Okinawa operations. To read Cmdr. Becton’s interview click here. All the photos below are courtesy of NHHC’s Photo Archives, the Navy Art Collection and the National Archives. On April 1, 1945, under heavy naval gunfire and aircraft support, U.S…. Read the rest of this entry »

Oct 23

Beirut Marine Barracks bombing: October 23, 1983

Wednesday, October 23, 2013 3:49 PM


Thirty years ago today, two truck bombs struck seperate buildings housing U.S. Marines and French forces, members of the Multinational Force in Lebanon, and killed 299 American & French servicemen. 220 U.S. Marines & 18 Sailors were among the casualties. This was the deadliest day in Marine Corps history since Iwo Jima. The following article, Navy-Marine Corps Team in Lebanon by Lieutenant Colonel David Evins, U.S. Marine Corps, is from the May 1984 issue of Proceedings magazine. On 6 June 1982, the Israeli Army crossed the border into southern Lebanon. One hundred thousand troops swept north , backed up by the Israelis… Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 18

Operation Praying Mantis, 18 April 1988

Thursday, April 18, 2013 6:40 AM


On 14 April 1988, watchstanders aboard USS Samuel B. Roberts (FFG 58) sighted three mines floating approximately half of a mile from the ship. Twenty minutes after the first sighting, as Samuel B. Roberts was backing clear of the minefield, she struck a submerged mine. The explosive device tore a 21-foot hole in the hull, causing extensive fires and flooding. Ten Sailors were injured in the attack. Only the heroic efforts of the ship’s crew, working feverishly for seven straight hours, saved the vessel from sinking. Four days later, forces of the Joint Task Force Middle East (JTFME) executed the… Read the rest of this entry »

Feb 7

February 6, 1973: Navy Task Force 78 Begins Operation End Sweep

Thursday, February 7, 2013 9:19 AM


This article was originally published in the March 1974 issue of Proceedings magazine by Rear Admiral Brian McCauley, U. S. Navy Western strategists of every stripe had grown hoarse calling for the mining of Haiphong Harbor and, at last, it was done. Now, with the ceasefire signed, the mines had to be retrieved or destroyed and, as surface ships of Task Force 58 trailed a sweeping heli­copter into Haiphong on 17 June 1973, the end of “End Sweep”—a tedious, lengthy, and totally unglamorous job—was in sight.

Aug 21

First U.S. Marine Corps Band Concert

Tuesday, August 21, 2012 9:25 AM


The U.S. Marine Corps Band gave its first concert in Washington D.C. on August 21, 1800. The following article, published in the April 1923 issue of Proceedings, gives a brief history of the Marine Corps Band. HOW THE MARINE BAND STARTED BY MAJOR EDWIN N. McCLELLAN, U. S. MARINE CORPS MARINE CORPS HISTORIAN So many and varying accounts have been given of the first organization of the Marine Band of Washington, that it is time that the real, and interesting, true story should be told. The Marine Band did not just happen into being, nor were its beginnings in an… Read the rest of this entry »

Jul 24

Operation Forager

Tuesday, July 24, 2012 10:17 AM


On July 24, 1944, the Naval Task Force landed Marines on Tinian. After victory in the Battle of Saipan from June 15 to July 9, Tinian, which was 3.5 miles south of Saipan, was the next logical step in the U.S. strategy of island hopping. Tinian was Phase III of Operation Forager, which began with the capture of Saipan (Phase I) and the battle for the liberation of Guam (II), which was raging even as the Marines were approaching Tinian. Submarines were used to destroy enemy forces approaching the islands , clearing the way for the beach landing. The following… Read the rest of this entry »

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