This article was published in the December 1927 issue of Proceedings magazine as “A New Job for the Supply Corps” by Lieutenant T. E. Hipp, (SC), U.S. Navy.
The Naval aircraft factory at the Navy Yard, Philadelphia, was organized during the stress of the World War when naval officers were not available to recruit the organization and the work of airplane manufacture was a new departure for the Navy. The engineers and executives for the factory were procured almost entirely from civil life and the organization was so drawn as best to handle the factory’s peculiar mission. Naval precedent and tradition had little place in the structure of the organization and the selection of personnel. The present structure of the organization, although in some particulars similar to that of the standard Navy industrial organization, presents certain salient and unusual features which may be of interest to students of naval industrial management. The following organization chart shows the Naval aircraft factory lines of authority and the relations existing among the different offices and sub-divisions of the main departments. Special attention is invited to the position of inside superintendent, to which a member of the supply corps was assigned May 15, 1923.
The two outstanding features of this organization are the centralization of engineering responsibility and the close interlocking of the functions of procurement, production and accounting. It is this second feature, of particular interest to supply officers and production superintendents, that this article will describe. The cooperation of the supply department is essential to economical and expeditious production. Although, on account of desirable central control, available space and favorable location, the supply department of the naval aircraft factory functions as a general storehouse for aeronautical supplies for the entire naval service, its prime and vital duty in the production system is the procurement and storage of raw materials and shipment of completed aeronautical equipment.
To perform such duties it is necessary to maintain an organization capable of securing the most satisfactory material required in the manufacturing processes, equipment and general supplies; to secure the most desirable delivery of material, keeping complete and accurate record of all unfilled purchase orders. Navy Regulations and orders provide for the manner of purchase, terms of payment and the recording and classifying of material after receipt. There are slight changes and modifications in the usual methods of storekeeping and recording at the naval aircraft factory in order to meet the needs of this particular industry.
All production work, however authorized, is originated in the supply department by the means of a “Supply Officer’s Request,” which briefly outlines that which is to be done, and either makes references to, or encloses, specifications therefor, furnished by the engineering department. This work is assigned a specific priority in relation to other work in the plant, and in cases where it is necessary to make use of material or tools other than those which have been established as standard stock, the supply department is required to become a part of the production schedule by furnishing estimated date of receipt of such items with subsequent revision’s when the necessity arises. To do this it is necessary for the supply department to maintain a definite follow-up on all material expected from sources outside of the factory. Therefore, in being charged with the duties of initiating all requests for production, the provision of specified material on scheduled dates, and the ultimate shipment of the completed product, the supply department does perform a function which is essential to and closely interlocked with production.
Another department which is closely allied with and essential to the production organization is the accounting office. In the civilian industrial field, the manufacturer is dependent upon records of past performances and accurate cost records to enable him intelligently to operate his establishment to meet the keen competition encountered in making bids and estimates, and in providing a safe return and profit on the capital invested. Similarly in naval industrial organizations, and especially at the present time, due to the limited money allowances granted the bureaus to maintain and operate the fleet, it is necessary that intelligent cost data be furnished for the purpose of making estimates which will be useful in acquainting the department with the amounts that have been and will be obligated.
Taking into consideration this close interlocking of procurement, production and accounting, it was decided to request the assignment of an officer of the supply corps to the position of inside superintendent in the works department of the naval aircraft factory. The inside superintendent is the coordinator of the planning office, the schedule office, and the preparation division. His three principal assistants are the planning superintendent, the schedule superintendent, and the preparation superintendent.
The planning superintendent, under the general supervision of the inside superintendent, is in charge of the making of all estimates of the cost of work, the issuance of job orders for work, however authorized, with the responsibility for charging work to the proper appropriation title and account, and the checking of the authenticity of the authority. He is charged with the issuance of manufacturing orders or detailed work orders to shops for their portions of the work covered by the job order as a whole; and for the supply of plans, or other working data, to shops for work manufacturing orders. He is responsible for the drawing up or checking of bills of material, and the transmission of them to the Preparation Division.
The preparation superintendent, under the general supervision of the inside superintendent, is responsible for the stubbing from store of all material for authorized work; for the submission of purchase requests to the supply officer for material not in stores, which is required for authorized work; for the maintenance of shortage lists of material for authorized work; for the operation of sub-storerooms, or material depots for raw material or work in progress, in the custody of the works department, which is not being worked upon; for the operation of shop store rooms or material depots containing small amounts of material located within the shop areas, but which has not yet been stubbed from the supply officer’s books. He is responsible for the operation of the salvage section, handling rejected material; he is in charge of the
operation and maintenance of the factory transportation system, including operation of overhead cranes.
The schedule superintendent, under the general supervision of the inside superintendent, is responsible for the preparation and issuance of all works department schedules; for the maintenance of status reports on all work in progress; for the preparation of the weekly progress report, which is forwarded to the Bureau of Aeronautics; for the preparation of the monthly factory master schedule, which shows the general time-planning of work ahead of the factory, and for the maintenance of the work load on the various shops.
After analyzing these duties, it is apparent that the position of inside superintendent, which embraces these functions, is a central office, making intimate contact, not only with all of the shops, but also with the engineering department, the supply department and the accounting department. In requesting the assignment of an officer of the supply corps to this duty, it was believed that a supply officer, with his knowledge of accounting and material supply, could as quickly acquaint himself with those phases of this position usually not within the scope of a supply officer, as a line officer, or naval constructor, who is more familiar with the manufacturing problem; could acquaint himself with those phrases related to supply and accounting, and furthermore, the experience to be gained in such a position should prove of great value professionally, in the future.
Due to the rapid growth and recognized necessity of aviation throughout the naval service, it is desirable that officers of the supply corps become familiar with the needs and requirements of this important branch of the nation’s first line of defense, and it is believed that the naval aircraft factory, for the time being at least, is the best aviation school for supply officers in existence.
Having in mind a more far-reaching effect and influence, it is believed, that, not only will the duties described be of great benefit to an officer who might at some time or other be concerned with aviation accounting and supply, but surely a certain period of service within the organization of any industrial department will better fit him for the position of supply officer of a yard or vessel. Through such service, he has been able to observe the problems encountered; the cause and effect of the different policies, systems and requirements, all tending to make of him an abler executive with a larger and more cooperative spirit.
Why not then, assign junior officers in the supply corps to duty in industrial organizations for training and experience? Even further, carrying this idea to its logical conclusion, there is no apparent reason why a supply officer, with such experience and training, should not be eminently capable of assuming the responsibilities of directing any Navy industrial establishment. It is to the best interest of each corps to take advantage of any opportunity afforded to enlarge its field of activities, and especially, if by so doing, it arrives at a broader viewpoint, which tends to promote a greater spirit of harmony and efficiency in the organization of the Navy as a whole.
This article, written by Naval Constructor C. W. Fisher, U. S. Navy was published in the February 1917 issue of Proceedings magazine, entitled “The Log of the Constitution, Feb. 21-24, 1815: The Capture of the Cyane and the Levant“ .
Enclosed herewith is a blueprint of an extract from the log of the U. S. frigate Constitution, dated February 21 to February 24, 1815. This brief extract includes a description of the action between the Constitution and British vessels Cyane and Levant. As an example of most admirable seamanship, excellent control, fine tactics, and a happy as well as forceful style of recording important events, I consider this brief extract to be of sufficient value to warrant its being published for the “information and guidance” of the navy to-day. It would be hard to find a better model than this modest record of a most unusual and courageous action.
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. Read the rest of this entry »
This article was written by Rear Admiral George J. Dufek, USN (retired) with Joseph E. Oglesby, JOC, USN. It was originally published as “Operation Deepfreeze Fits Out” in the March 1956 issue of Proceedings magazine.
When President Eisenhower announced a renewal of American interest in the Antarctic early last year, he gave the Department of Defense the responsibility for supporting American scientists in the greatest American undertaking in the barren history of the Antarctic.
Considering the complexities involved, it immediately became apparent that the Navy would draw the bid as the Defense agency best qualified to undertake the four-year task. At a point some eleven thousand miles south of Boston, the Navy had to build three permanent bases (one of them by airdrop at the South Pole) and an air operating facility big enough to handle four-engine planes. It had to ferry thousands of tons of scientific supplies, countless gallons of gasoline and other fuels, plus construction equipment including thirty-ton tractors, and a bewildering variety of equipment and provisions to aid the scientists during the International Geophysical Year (IGY) from July, 1957, through December, 1958.
The Navy had to begin moving early in 1955 to be prepared for the great scientific venture. Task Force 43 was formed under the Commander in Chief, U. S. Atlantic Fleet, as the support force for American participation in the year of science.
“The Wilkes Exploring Expedition: Its Progress Through Half a Century” was originally published in the September/October 1914 issue of Proceedings magazine by Louis N. Feipel:
The important expedition known as the Wilkes, or South Sea, Exploring Expedition, fitted out in 1838 by national munificence, was the first that ever left our shores, and the first to be commanded by an officer of the United States Navy. But although organized on a most stupendous scale, and shrouded in a most interesting history, this expedition is to-day comparatively unknown.
Following the seizure of the USS Pueblo, Admiral Thomas H. Moorer, USN, Chief of Naval Operations and President of the Naval Institute, gave these remarks in an address to the American Bar Foundation on January 25, 1969. This address was published in the March 1969 issue of Proceedings magazine.
“You, as lawyers, will understand why I, as Chief of Naval Operations, and thus in the reviewing chain of command, cannot make comments on the substantive aspects of testimony given during the Inquiry. I will be ready to do this at the appropriate time.
I can, however, put the nature of the Inquiry in proper perspective and, hopefully, reassure the American people that the Court of Inquiry is being conducted in a straightforward, legal and objective manner.
First: What is a Court of Inquiry? It is a fact-finding body—that and nothing more. It is not a court-martial. Witnesses at a Court of Inquiry are not on trial. A Court of Inquiry cannot even prefer charges. It simply records the facts and makes recommendations to the convening authority—in this case the Commander-in-Chief of The Pacific Fleet. These recommendations may cover such things as operational procedures, material improvements, communications, training of personnel, international law—and many other subjects—and, if warranted, the recommendation for further legal proceedings.
Next: Why are we having a Court of Inquiry? A ship has been lost. We always have a Court of Inquiry when this happens—whatever the cause.
Particular emphasis is being placed on protecting the rights of the individuals, and on lessons learned. These lessons will be of great assistance in the future.
When the Inquiry opened its initial session, the first witness was Commander Bucher. He was given the legally required advice concerning his rights as a party to the Inquiry. Counsel for the court made it clear that Commander Bucher was not at that time suspected of having committed any offense under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
Later, when Commander Bucher, in his testimony, indicated that the North Koreans had boarded his ship, the counsel for the court—as required by the law you know so well—told Commander Bucher it was possible that he had violated U. S. Navy Regulations, Article 0730 which reads: ‘The commanding officer shall not permit his command to be searched by any person representing a foreign state nor permit any of the personnel under his command to be removed from the command by such persons, so long as he has the power to resist.’ He explained to Commander Bucher his right to testify no further and gave him the routine, required warning that, if he did so, the information could be used against him later.
Since this simple act of legal procedure—basic to our legal system—caused so much controversy, was so misinterpreted and has caused so many to prejudge the outcome of this Inquiry, let me emphasize three points:
First: Such a warning was not unexpected by Commander Bucher or his counsel—here are the words of Commander Bucher’s counsel addressed to the counsel for the court: ‘We have discussed this matter with Commander Bucher in some detail. As you know, we had some preliminary conversations with you before this Court of Inquiry convened as to the procedures that would be followed and the manner by which Commander Bucher’s story and the story of the USS Pueblo could be presented to this Court. We obviously anticipated the situation that we find ourselves in at the present moment. We have discussed this in detail with Commander Bucher. In view of your warning, Commander Bucher persists in his desire to fully and completely tell this Court of Inquiry the details of the 23rd of January and the events subsequent thereto. Based on that, Commander Bucher, with the Court’s permission, requests that he be permitted to testify, and complete this phase of the story. Commander Bucher, am I correctly reciting your wishes in this matter? And do I correctly recite that you have been adequately and fully apprised of all your legal rights which include the right to remain silent on this portion?’ Commander Bucher answered in the affirmative.
Second: I would like to emphasize that a Court of Inquiry must begin with a blank record. Newspaper accounts, rumors, second-hand reports or prejudgments cannot be considered. The official record of the Pueblo‘s capture and the treatment of her crew must come from testimony and evidence presented to this Court of Inquiry. For the Court, what has appeared and will appear in public accounts simply does not exist.
Third: Whether the Navy—or anyone in the Navy—was pleased or displeased with Commander Bucher’s testimony could have nothing whatever to do with that warning. I realize I am ‘preaching to the choir’ when I tell you that. However, the requirement to warn Commander Bucher is obviously not so well understood by some.
Ladies and Gentlemen—I am deeply troubled—that what was a routine and totally correct legal procedure has been widely misinterpreted.
As Chief of Naval Operations—I intend to ensure—and the Court itself will ensure—that Commander Bucher’s rights—as well as all others appearing before the Court—are fully protected. Possibly there will be similar warnings concerning self-incrimination as additional witnesses testify. The point to keep in mind is that the Navy is searching for facts—not scapegoats. We are doing so—within limits imposed by national security—in open hearings, because I believe that this is the way the American people would want it done. And we are taking well-tested and legally prescribed steps to protect the rights of all concerned.
I earnestly request you, who are so well-qualified, to assist me in explaining the legal aspects of the Pueblo Inquiry to the American people. And, I earnestly request the American people to be patient, not to prejudge, and to have full trust and confidence that the procedures used in developing the facts surrounding the piracy against the Pueblo are being carried out by experienced men of great integrity who have only the welfare of our country at heart.”
July 19, 1909
After reaching the North Pole, Robert E. Peary began his return south on the steamer Roosevelt.
“His journey north and his dynamic activity in the 30 hours spent near the pole form a tour de force with few if any parallels in the annals of exploration.”
The April 1959 issue of Proceedings included an article by Hugh C. Mitchell which described the public controversy over Peary’s success and emphasized the importance of his detailed observations in validating the recognition he received for reaching the North pole:
On September 5, 1909, the steamer Roosevelt reached Indian Harbor in Labrador, and Robert E. Peary, a commander in the Civil Engineer Corps of the U. S. Navy, wired the secretary of the Peary Arctic Club in New York City a cipher message which, being decoded, read, ” Pole reached. Roosevelt Safe.” And at the same time a message went to Mrs. Peary: “Have made good. I have the pole. Am well. Love.”
These messages announced the success of Peary, after many years of tireless effort, in reaching the north geographic pole of the earth, the goal of many intrepid explorers in years gone by, possibly the greatest and most sought for geographic prize of all time, and also the most difficult of attainment. Read the rest of this entry »