Jul 27

This Day In History: The Korean War Armistice

Saturday, July 27, 2019 12:01 AM

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The 27th of July, 2019 marks the 66th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice. While a peace treaty was never signed (leaving the two Koreas still technically at war) the 1953 armistice nevertheless finally brought a cessation of all hostilities to the Korean War. The armistice also established the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).  While numerous factors played a role in complicating the Korean War Armistice, there were two notable reasons it took more than two years to negotiate. First, there was disagreement over the placement of the demarcation line dividing the two Koreas, which involved determining the actual location of… 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 »

 
Jul 21

The Bennington Disaster

Sunday, July 21, 2019 12:01 AM

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One half of a steroview showing the Bennington beached after the explosion.

All seemed well on board the USS Bennington (Gunboat No. 4) as the sun rose over the hills of San Diego, California on Friday, 21 July 1905. The gunboat was laying at anchor just west of the Coronado ferry crossing, having arrived on the 19th after a 17-day voyage from Pearl Harbor. The crew were undoubtedly disappointed, for their long-awaited shore leave in the city was cancelled when the gunboat was ordered to tow the Wyoming to Port Hartford after the monitor blew a gasket on her main engine. Down below, the “black gang” stoked the fires to prepare the… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Jul 12

Stan the Navy Man Musial

Friday, July 12, 2019 10:27 AM

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Some shards of memory gleam back from long ago with a special sparkle that keeps them ever fresh in mind. For my brother Mark and me, a cluster of such memories assembled one hot summer evening, 27 August 1954, at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. We had been captivated by bubble-gum baseball cards and Harry Caray’s exciting radio broadcasts of Cardinal games. For months we had been begging our parents to take us to our first big-league game. The magic evening arrived. Alas, the Brooklyn Dodgers won the game 8–4, but we were hooked. Our hero, then and since, was… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Jul 10

That Time the Navy Learned the Way to Beat a Zero is to Catch a Zero

Wednesday, July 10, 2019 7:41 AM

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Japanese Zero crashed in marsh.

During the Cold War air-to-air warfare was alive and well. The Soviets had a huge air force, and their fighters were a viable threat to NATO aircraft. As a result, American fighter crews trained extensively in matters pertaining to shooting down other airplanes. Among the air-to-air training programs was a super-secret one called “Constant Peg.” In the late ’70s the U.S. Air Force came into possession of a few Soviet aircraft (MiG 21s and 23s) that Israel captured from Syria. Over the years that inventory grew to more than a dozen airplanes acquired from places like Pakistan and China. The… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Jul 4

Baseball Has Marked the Time

Thursday, July 4, 2019 12:01 AM

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There are few things that define a nation like its traditions. For the U.S., it’s turkey for Thanksgiving, fireworks on the 4th of July, apple pie, hot dogs, cracker jacks and baseball. The game is not only a part of everyday life, it has also found a home in the U.S. Navy. Below are a collection of photos showing the history of sailors enjoying America’s pastime over the last 150 years.                                        

 
Jul 3

Our First Korean War

Wednesday, July 3, 2019 12:01 AM

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As we remember the 69th anniversary of the start of the Korean War, many Americans forget that it was by no means our first Korean War. That title belongs to a conflict involving the 1871 Korean Expedition. In the period between the Civil War and the Spanish-American War, the Navy’s purpose shifted to various peacetime operations. During this time, the United States sent its Navy to far foreign stations and exerted its power with greater authority than ever before. The 1871 Korean Expedition exemplified the role of the Navy during this time period, as it involved both an attempt at… Read the rest of this entry »

 
Jul 2

The Early Years: Remembering Admiral Rickover

Tuesday, July 2, 2019 12:01 AM

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Rear Admiral Charles E. Loughlin, U.S. Navy (Ret.)

In this audio sample from his oral history, Admiral Loughlin looks back on his service in the 1930s on board the battleship USS New Mexico (BB-40), where he worked for a certain assistant chief engineer named Lieutenant Hyman G. Rickover. The future Admiral Rickover was, says Loughlin, “one of the big influences on my life . . . one of the most loyal naval officers I’ve ever worked for . . . . He made a tremendous difference.” Loughlin, who graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1933, went to submarine school and served in various boats before taking command… Read the rest of this entry »