Archive for the 'Submarines' Category

Oct 22

Midget Submarines at Guadalcanal

Tuesday, October 22, 2019 12:01 AM

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The story of the Japanese midget submarines at Pearl Harbor is pretty well known. But that only covers 5 of the little submersibles. What about the others? There were 50 of the original type A midgets. They participated in other daring raids, some more successful than others. However, the use of Type A midgets at Guadalcanal have received scant attention. The entire Solomons campaign was marked by several major battles which is, possibly, one reason that the midget submarines participation has been so poorly covered. The midgets were used at Pearl Harbor and then at Sydney and Diego Suarez. All… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Aug 3

This Day in History: The Nautilus’ Under Pole Passage

Saturday, August 3, 2019 12:01 AM

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As the first commanding officer of the nuclear-powered submarine Nautilus (SSN-571), Commander Eugene Wilkinson famously broadcast to the world on 17 January 1955, “Underway on Nuclear Power.” He knew firsthand just how capable the boat and her crew were. But by 1958, he had moved on to command Submarine Division 102. The man in charge was now Commander William Anderson. The skipper was slated to take the Nautilus up the West Coast, under the North Pole, and back down the East Coast. To prepare for this tall order, Anderson first drove the Nautilus, loaded with crew and scientists alike, under… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Jul 25

We All Scream For Ice Cream: World War II and America’s Sweet Tooth

Thursday, July 25, 2019 12:01 AM

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It’s late July, and in Maryland and most of the United States, this month provides one certainty: it is hot. There are plenty of ways to combat the heat, from taking a swim to just staying indoors in the relative protection of air conditioning, but there’s one form of cooling off that never gets old for me, and that’s having an ice cream. Something about that first taste always transports me – if I don’t get a brain freeze – to other sunny afternoons and happy days, and I can never eat an ice cream on a hot day without… Read the rest of this entry »

 
May 10

USS Triton (SSN-586) and her Historic Voyage, ending May 10, 1960

Friday, May 10, 2019 1:00 AM

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On a brisk February day in 1960, the USS Triton (SSN-586) sailed out of New London, Connecticut on the Thames River down to Long Island Sound and into the Atlantic Ocean on what the crew presumed to be its usual patrol. Soon thereafter, they started to notice changes in direction and the suspense grew about where they were headed. Two days later, around 4:00pm, Captain Edward L. Beach, Jr, made his announcement on the general announcing microphone in the control room.   “Men,” He said, “I know you’ve all been waiting to hear what this cruise is all about and… Read the rest of this entry »

 
May 2

Tenth Patrol of the USS Silversides (SS-236)

Thursday, May 2, 2019 12:01 AM

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RADM John S. Coye Jr., U.S. Navy (Ret.)

In this audio excerpt from his oral history, Rear Admiral John Coye describes the tenth war patrol of the USS Silversides (SS-236) and the sinking of three Japanese ships off the Marianas in May 1944. After graduation from the Naval Academy in 1933, Admiral Coye served in the cruiser USS Northampton (CA-26) and destroyer Monaghan (DD-354). Submarine school in 1937 was followed by service in the submarine USS Shark (SS-174) as engineer until 1941. He then helped put the mothballed submarine USS R-18 (SS-95) into commission and succeeded to command during patrols off Panama. The highlight of his career came during… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Mar 26

Sinking and Submerged: Emergency Escape Equipment for Submarines

Tuesday, March 26, 2019 7:49 AM

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When I picture a naval rescue operation, my mind turns to men in life preservers, huddled together in a lifeboat as they watch their vessel sink beneath the waves. At least, that’s what I thought of until last week, when a stack of World War II naval rescue images crossed my desk, ready for research and processing. There was a good number of the images I was expecting: men in lifeboats; men soaked to the skin wearing life preservers; and men bobbing on the surface of the water, ship sinking in the background. Then, at the bottom of the stack,… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Mar 14

ASW Rise and Fall

Thursday, March 14, 2019 12:01 AM

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The submarine is an elusive creature. Designed to operate mostly alone, and stealthily, it has become a factor far out of proportion to its size in the battle at sea. Fighting the submarine requires a well thought out strategy, supported by carefully coordinated tactics, carried out sequentially, to implement such strategy. The slightest tactical omission can result in lost ships. The Submarine Threat in World War I During WWI, U-Boats severely threatened the Allied War effort. Waiting, submerged and silent, at choke points along Allied logistics routes, submarines quickly became a severe danger. To combat submarines, ad hoc measures: nets,… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Jun 22

First SOSUS signal at Cape Hatteras – June 1962

Friday, June 22, 2018 3:21 PM

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I started to feel a little nostalgic when I found out that the first SOSUS signal of a Soviet diesel submarine was detected by the Cape Hatteras Naval Facility (NAVFAC) on June 26, 1962. Like many other women naval officers who launched their careers in the Cold War era, SOSUS was one of the few real ‘operational’ billets available to us, so we requested and got orders to the ‘Naval Facilities’ to begin our careers as watch officers for what was a secret but highly successful cold war antisubmarine warfare asset at the time. Our job was to monitor, detect, hold… Read the rest of this entry »

 
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