Jan 12

Naval Air Station Queenstown, Ireland 1918

Tuesday, January 12, 2016 12:01 AM

By

Located in the U.S. Naval Institute Photo Archive is a record of a long-forgotten naval base, a naval aviation base to be precise. Perhaps the reason Naval Air Station Queenstown—situated at Aghada, four miles from Queenstown (present-day Cobh), Ireland, in County Cork—was forgotten is because it existed for less than a year. Established in 1918, after the United States had entered World War I, the antisubmarine base closed a few months after Armistice Day.

Queenstown was one of four naval air stations the United States established in Ireland under the command of Navy Commander Francis McCrary. It consisted of six hangars for Curtiss H-16 flying boats, which patrolled for U-boats off Ireland’s southern coast. Beginning operations in the last months of the war, the station’s aircraft would fly a total of 64 war patrols and record three bombing attacks against German submarines.

Below is a small sampling from H. H. Jalbert’s photo album documenting life at the air station. D. M. Jalbert donated the album, without the photos showing H. H. Jalbert except for one, to the Naval Institute Photo Archive in the mid-1980s. One can only assume D. M. is a relation of H. H. Jalbert and wanted to keep the personal photos with the family.

Even without the photos of H. H. Jalbert, the small album is a treasure.

H.H. Jalbert's photo album (Photographed by Melissa King)

H.H. Jalbert’s photo album (Photographed by Melissa King)

 

Seaman Guard

Seaman Guard

 

The base’s chief petty officers

The base’s chief petty officers

 

Inspection with H. H. Jalbert walking on the left

Inspection with H. H. Jalbert walking on the left

 

Six Hangers along the coast

Six Hangers along the coast

 

Curtiss H16 flying on patrol

Curtiss H-16 flying on patrol

 

Three Towers along the southern coast of Ireland

Three Towers along the southern coast of Ireland

 

Curtiss H-16 back from patrol

Curtiss H-16 back from patrol

 

The Men of Naval Air Station Queenstown

The Men of Naval Air Station Queenstown

 
 
 
  • Meg Carroll

    Dear Emily,
    I read with great interest your piece on the Naval Air Station Queenstown and the photos of H.H. Jalbert. I am researching the WWI US NAS Lough Foyle opened on the opposite coast of Ireland at the same time. My grandfather was stationed there, and I am looking for any information about the base.
    Thank,
    Meg Carroll

  • jojofive

    Is it possible for Emily Martin author of this article..

    https://www.navalhistory.org/2016/01/12/naval-air-station-queenstown-ireland-1918..

    To contact me about this .. As this is of vital importance to our local history….
    Regards…..Charles O Flaherty [email protected]

  • Thom Dickerson

    My Dad was stationed there and married an Irish lady, Beatrice Bolton. Thomas Dayton Dickerson MM1, worked on the seaplane power plants. Have many docs and photos. Some which are displayed here, but at a different angle. Lots of local community shots too as well as a great photo of the Shelbourne Hotel. Also flew with the “Howden Detachment” in Shortstown, North UK.

  • lorraine

    I’m Living in Cobh then Queenstown. I’m working on Spike Island which was a military base at the time, I’m doing
    research on the US Navy in Queenstown. if anyone has any information or photographs they would be willing to share with me would really help.
    [email protected],ie

  • Spacely’s Sprockets

    Hello – Just to refine some of the information shared above. There were 5 US Naval Air Stations in Ireland during WW1 and the Commanding Officer of NAS Queenstown was P.J. Peyton, USNRF LCDR, Naval Aviator 47.

  • jojofive

    Hi Thom….Would you drop us a line please…[email protected]..
    Regards…Cha