This Day In United States Naval History will be a chronological timetable of historical events that occurred in history related to the United States Navy.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 14th
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1864 - During the Civil War, Acting Master Lothrop Wight and Acting Ensign Frederick W. Mintzer explore Confederate naval dispositions above Dutch Gap on James River, Va. Work on the Dutch Gap would allow Union gunboats to bypass the obstructions at Trents Reach. Wight and Mintzer provide valuable information regarding the positions of the Confederate ships and troops.
1906 - President Theodore Roosevelt becomes the first president to visit a foreign country while in office, traveling to Panama onboard USS Louisiana (BB 19).
1910 - Civilian Eugene Ely pilots the first aircraft to take-off from a warship, USS Birmingham (CL 2) at Hampton Roads, Va.
1943 - USS Narwhal (SS 167) delivers 46 tons of ammunition and stores, disembarks a Navy officer at Nasipit, Mindanao and embarks 32 evacuees, which include eight women, two children, and a baby, who are transported to Darwin, Australia.
1944 - USS Jack (SS 259) attacks a Japanese convoy off Cape Padaran, French Indochina and sinks the freighter Hinaga Maru, while USS Raton (SS 270) attacks a Japanese convoy off the northwest coast of Luzon and sinks the merchant tanker No.5 Unkai Maru. Lastly, USS Ray (SS 271) sinks Japanese Coast Defense Vessel No.7 65 miles northwest of Cape Bolinao.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 15th
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1836 - Under the command of Lt. Henry H. Bell, the sloop-of-war Saint Louis conducts an exploratory expedition along the coast of Florida with four boats and 70 men.
1863 - Fort Moultrie opens a heavy evening bombardment on Union Army positions at Cummings Point, S.C., which also results in the Union monitor Lehigh running aground. Still under Confederate fire in the morning, the monitor Nahant is able to release her. Five sailors from Lehigh receive Medals of Honor for their heroic line work that frees their ship.
1932 - USS Indianapolis (CA 35) is commissioned. Toward the end of WWII, the Indianapolis was torpedoed by Japanese submarine I 58 in the Philippine Sea. Of the 1,196 crewmen aboard, approximately 300 went down with the ship. The remaining sailors faced exposure, dehydration, and shark attacks while floating with few lifeboats and almost no food or water. 880 lives were lost.
1942 - Navy SBDs (VS-10) and TBFs (VT-10), Marine Corps SBDs (VMSB-132), and Marine Corps and Army coast artillery and gunfire from USS Meade (DD 602) sink four Japanese transports off the northern coast of Guadalcanal.
1943 - USS Crevalle (SS 291) sinks Japanese army cargo ship Kyokko Maru off San Antonio, Zambales province, Philippines.
1944 - USS Frament (DE 677), while escorting captured Italian submarine Luigi Settembrini, collides with the sub 685 miles west of Gibraltar. Frament is damaged but Luigi Settembrini sinks. Frament rescues 14 survivors.
1944 - USS Barbel (SS 316) attacks a Japanese convoy about 250 miles east of Tourane, French Indochina, sinks transports Misaki Maru and Sugiyama Maru, then escapes searches by minesweepers W.18 and W.20. USS Batfish (SS 310) sinks Japanese supply ship Kurasaki north-northwest of Cape Bolinao while USS Jack (SS 259) sinks transports Nichiel Maru and No.2 Yuzan Maru.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 16th
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1776 - The first salute of an American flag (Grand Union Flag) by a foreign power is rendered by the Dutch at St. Eustatius, West Indies in reply to a salute by the Continental ship Andrew Doria.
1798 - The warship Baltimore is halted by the British off Havana, intending to impress Baltimores crew who could not prove American citizenship. Fifty-five seamen are imprisoned though 50 are later freed.
1942 - USS Woolsey (DD 437), USS Swanson (DD 443), and USS Quick (DD 490) sink the German submarine U-173 off Casablanca, French Morocco.
1963 - President John F. Kennedy, on board USS Observation Island (EAG 154), witnesses the launch of Polaris A-2 missile by USS Andrew Jackson (SSBN 619).
1973 - Skylab 4 is launched and recovery is performed by USS New Orleans (LPH 11).
This Day In United States Naval History - November 17th
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1847 - During the Mexican-American War, 17 Marines and 50 Sailors from the sloop-of-war Dale land at Guaymas, Mexico. The Americans are pinned down in a brief fire-fight and their commander is seriously wounded before the defenders dispersed.
1863 - The screw sloop Monongahela escorts Army troops and covers their landing on Mustang Island, Texas while her Sailors shell Confederate works until the defenders surrender.
1917 - USS Fanning (DD 37) and USS Nicholson (DD 52) sink the first German submarine, U-58, off Milford Haven, Wales, upon entering World War I.
1941 - Congress amends the Neutrality Act to allow U.S. merchant ships to be armed.
1944 - TBMs (VC-82) from escort carrier USS Anzio (CVE 57) and USS Lawrence C. Taylor (DE 415) sink Japanese submarine I-26 in the Philippine Sea while USS Spadefish (SS 411) sinks escort carrier Shinyo in the Yellow Sea.
1958 - USNS Chain (T AGOR 17), the first of the Navys new oceanographic research ships, is placed in service and serves with the Military Sea Transportation Service.
2018 - USS Sioux City (LCS 11) was commissioned during a ceremony at the U.S. Naval Academy. The Freedom-variant is the Navy's 13th littoral combat ship to enter the fleet and the sixth of the Freedom variant.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 18th
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1889 - The battleship Maine launches at the New York Navy Yard.
1922 - In a PT seaplane, Cmdr. Kenneth Whiting makes the first catapult launching from an aircraft carrier at anchor, USS Langley (CV 1), in the York River.
1943 - USS Bluefish (SS 222) sinks the Japanese destroyer Sanae and damages the oiler Ondo 90 miles south of Basilan Island.
1944 - USS Blackfin (SS 322) diverts from her war patrol and picks up captured Japanese cryptographic and technical equipment, along with other secret documents, west of Camurong River on the north coast of Mindoro, Philippines.
1944 - USS Peto (SS 265), USS Spadefish (SS 411), and USS Sunfish (SS 281) attack the same Japanese convoy in the East China. Peto sinks army cargo ships Aisakasan Maru and Chinkai Maru. Spadefish sinks auxiliary submarine chaser Cha 156 and Sunfish sinks army transport Seisho Maru.
1962 - USS Currituck (AV 7) rescues 13 Japanese fishermen from their disabled fishing boat Seiyu Maru, which was damaged in Typhoon Karen.
2017 - The U.S. Navy's Undersea Rescue Command (URC) deploys to Argentina to support the South American nation's search for the Argentinean Navy submarine A.R.A. San Juan in the Southern Atlantic. The boat went missing on Nov. 15. The Argentinian Navy called off the ensuing rescue mission on Nov. 30 and shifted its focus to locating the boat and determining the cause of its disappearance.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 19th
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1813 - Capt. David Porter, commander of the man-of-war Essex, claims the Marquesas Islands for the U.S. In the following weeks, he establishes a base to overhaul Essex and builds a fort.
1943 - USS Nautilus (SS 168) enters Tarawa lagoon for the first submarine photograph reconnaissance mission. It is later damaged by friendly fire from USS Santa Fe (CL 60) and USS Ringgold (DD 500) off Tarawa because due to the mission, Nautilus presence was unknown to the vessels.
1943 - USS Sculpin (SS 191) is damaged by the Japanese and abandoned by her crew. Forty-one Sailors are taken as POWs, 21 of whom are taken on Japanese carrier Chuyo that is later sunk by USS Sailfish (SS 192).
1944 - USS Conklin (DE 439) and USS McCoy Reynolds (DE 440) sink the Japanese submarine I-37 100 miles west of Palaus.
1969 - Navy astronauts Cmdr. Charles Conrad, Jr. and Cmdr. Alan L. Bean become the third and fourth men to walk on the moon as part of the Apollo 12 mission.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 20th
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1856 - During the Second Opium War, 287 Marines and Sailors from U.S. Navy ships Levant, Portsmouth, and San Jacinto land at Canton, China under the command of Cmdr. Andrew Foote. This action opens up diplomatic relations with China and the U.S. gains neutrality.
1933 - Lt. Cmdr. Thomas G. W. Settle and Maj. Chester I. Fordney set a world altitude record at 61,237 ft. in a balloon flight into the stratosphere at Akron, Ohio.
1943 - Vice Adm. Raymond A. Spruance's 5th Fleet lands Marine Corps and Army forces on Tarawa and Makin Atolls in the Gilbert Islands during Operation Galvanic.
1943 - PBY aircraft sink Japanese cargo vessel Naples Maru off New Ireland.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 21st
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1861 - During the Civil War, the screw steamer New London, along with screw steamer R.R. Cuyler and crew members of the screw steamer Massachusetts, capture the Confederate schooner Olive with a cargo of lumber in Mississippi Sound.
1918 - U.S. battleships witness the surrender of German High Seas fleet at Rosyth, Firth of Forth, Scotland to U.S. and British fleets.
1942 - USS Cincinnati (CL 6) and USS Somers (DD 381) uncover the Norwegian ship SS Skjilbred as being the German blockade runner Anneliese Essberger after setting explosions and boarding the ship. Survivors are taken on board USS Milwaukee (CL 5).
1943 - USS Nautilus (SS 168) lands U.S. Marine Corps Reconnaissance Company on Abemama, Gilberts while USS Trigger (SS 237) sinks Japanese freighter Eizan Maru in the Yellow Sea.
1944 - USS Sealion (SS 315) sinks the Japanese battleship Kongo and destroyer Urakaze north-northwest of Formosa.
2015 - The United States Navy commissioned littoral combat ship USS Milwaukee (LCS 5) at a ceremony in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. USS Milwaukee, a Freedom variant littoral combat ship, is designed to operate in shallow and coastal waters throughout the world.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 22nd
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1863 - During the Civil War, the screw steam gunboat Aroostook captures schooner Eureka off Galveston, Texas which had been bound for Havana with a cargo of cotton. Also on this date, the side-wheel gunboat Jacob Bell transports and supports a troop landing at St. George's Island, Md. where some 30 Confederates, some of whom were blockade runners, are captured.
1943 - USS Frazier's (DD 607) bow is badly damaged when she intentionally rams and eventually sinks Japanese submarine I 35 off Tarawa in tandem with USS Meade (DD 602). No injuries or casualties are suffered and two days later Frazier sails for repairs at Pearl Harbor.
1944 - USS Besugo (SS 321) sinks the Japanese landing ship T 151 off the northern tip of Palawan while USS Guavina (SS 362) sinks the Japanese army cargo ship Dowa Maru northwest of Borneo.
1961 - U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Colonel Robert B. Robinson, flying an F4H-1 Phantom II, sets a world speed record, averaging 1606.3 mph in two runs over the 15 to 25-kilometer course at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.
2017 - A Navy C-2A Greyhound crashes in the Philippine Sea while enroute to the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76). Search and rescue efforts recover eight Sailors and continue for two days. Three Sailors lose their lives in the crash.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 23rd
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1777 - During the American Revolution, the Continental sloop Ranger, commanded by John Paul Jones, captures the British brig Mary. Two days later, Ranger captures the British brig George. The prizes are then sent to Bordeaux and Nantes.
1838 - The sloop-of-war Vincennes reaches Rio de Janeiro en route to the South Pacific during the U.S. Exploring Expedition.
1861 - During the Civil War, CSS Sumter evades the steam sloop-of-war Iroquois at Martinique then steams for Europe.
1914 - The title Director of Naval Aeronautics is established to designate the officer in charge of Naval Aviation. Capt. Mark L. Bristol, already serving in that capacity, is ordered to report to the Secretary of the Navy under the new title.
1940 - President Franklin D. Roosevelt appoints Adm. William D. Leahy, then retired, as the U.S. Ambassador to Vichy France in an attempt to prevent the French fleet and naval bases from falling into German hands.
1943 - The U.S. Navy enlisted rating of Ships Servicemen (SH) is established. Ships Servicemen manage and operate retail and service activities afloat, along with managing and operating the ships barber, laundry, and tailor shops.
1944 - USS Bang (SS 385) sinks Japanese freighter Sakae Maru and transport Amakusa Maru, USS Redfish (SS 395) sinks freighter Hozan Maru, and USS Picuda (SS 382) sinks freighters Fukuju Maru and Shuyo Maru.
1981 - In an effort to limit the amount of illegal drugs crossing into the US Border, the Navy is ordered to scout for drug smugglers. Also, USS Mississippi (CGN 40) is the first U.S. Navy ship to assist in the seizure of drug smuggling vessel.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 24th
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1862 - During the Civil War, the screw steam gunboat Monticello destroys two Confederate salt works near Little River, N.C., while the screw steam gunboat Sagamore captures two British blockade runners, schooner Agnes and sloop Ellen, in Indian River, Fla.
1877 - While en route to Cuba to collect scientific information, the screw steam gunboat Huron wrecks in a storm near Nag's Head, N.C. The crew attempts to free their ship but it soon heels over, killing 98 officers and men.
1943 - Japanese submarine I-175 sinks USS Liscome Bay (CVE 56) southeast of Makin Island. Though 272 of her crew are rescued, she loses 55 officers and 591 enlisted men, including Navy Cross recipient Cook 3rd Class Doris Miller.
1943 - USS Nautilus (SS 168) and USS Gansevoort (DD 608) shell Japanese positions on Abemama Atoll, Gilbert Islands.
1964 - USS Princeton (LPH 5) completes seven days of humanitarian relief delivering 1,300 tons of supplies to the Quang Tri, Quang Ngai, and Binh Dinh provinces of South Vietnam which suffered damage from typhoon and floods.
1991 - The United States returns Subic Bay Naval Base to the control of the Philippines. Subic Bay had been an important point for the resupply of Naval vessels.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 25th
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1943 - At the Battle of Cape St. George, Destroyer Squadron 23 intercepts five Japanese destroyers attempting to land reinforcements at Buka on Bougainville. During this night engagement, the Japanese destroyers Onami, Makiname, and Yugiri are sunk.
1943 - USS Radford (DD 446) sinks Japanese submarine I-19 north of the Gilbert Islands.
1943 - PB4Y-1 aircraft, piloted by Lt. j.g. Vance Dawkins from VB-107, sinks German submarine U-849 in the South Atlantic west of the Congo estuary.
1944 - USS Hardhead (SS 365) attacks a Japanese convoy 60 miles west of Manila and sinks Coast Defense Vessel No.38 off Bataan Peninsula while USS Atule (SS 403) sinks Japanese freighter Santos Maru off Sabtang Island, Luzon. Also, USS Mingo (SS 261) sinks Japanese army transport Manila Maru.
1961 - USS Enterprise (CVAN 65), the U.S. Navy's first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, is commissioned in Newport News, Va.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 26th
1776 - During the American Revolution, the Continental sloop Independence, commanded by Capt. John Young, captures the British merchant ship Sam with $20,000 in coin on board.
1847 - Lt. William Lynch, in the ship-rigged sailing vessel Supply, sails from New York to Haifa for an expedition to the River Jordan and the Dead Sea.
1863 - The side-wheel steamship James Adger, commanded by Cmdr. F.H. Patterson, seizes British blockade runner Ella off Masonboro.
1864 - The Sassacus class "double-ender" steam gunboat Metacomet, commanded by Lt. Cmdr. J.E. Jouett, captures Confederate blockade runner steamer Susanna in the Gulf of Mexico off Campeche Banks. Half her cargo of cotton is thrown overboard in the chase.
1941 - Under the greatest secrecy, the Japanese armada, commanded by Vice Adm. Chuichi Nagumo, leaves Japan to attack the U.S. Navy at Pearl Harbor Dec. 7, 1941. The armada includes all six of Japans first-line aircraft carriers.
1944 - USS Bon Homme Richard (CV 31) is commissioned.
1951 - During the Korean War, Rear Adm. R.E. Libby relieves Rear Adm. Arleigh Burke as the United Nations delegate to the Panmunjom Peace Talks.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 27th
1941 - Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Harold R. Stark sends "war warning" to Commander in Chief, Pacific Fleet, Adm. Husband E. Kimmell, and Commander in Chief, Atlantic Fleet, Adm. Ernest J. King.
1942 - By orders of French Vice Adm. Jean de Borde, the French fleet is scuttled in Toulon, France to prevent the ships being used by the Germans.
1943 - USS Callaghan (DD 792) is commissioned. Named in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Rear Adm. Daniel J. Callaghan, who was killed during the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal November 1942, she serves in the Pacific until she is sunk by a Japanese kamikaze July 28, 1945.
Photo: USS Callaghan (DD-792) underway, circa 1944
1943 - USS Bowfin (SS 287) sinks the Vichy French cargo ship Van Vollenhoven off the coast of French Indochina while USS Seahorse (SS 304) sinks the Japanese fleet tanker San Ramon Maru in the East China Sea.
1944 - Japanese kamikazes sink the submarine chaser SC 744 and damage USS Colorado (BB 45), USS St. Louis (CL 49) and USS Montpelier (CL 57). All the light cruisers are repaired and return to combat duty for the rest of World War II.
This Day In United States Naval History - November 28th
1775 - Birthday of the Chaplain Corps after Congress adopts the first Rules for Regulation of the Navy of the United Colonies.
1863 - During the Civil War, the screw steam gunboat Chippewa convoys Army transport Monohansett and Mayflower up Skull Creek, S.C., on a reconnaissance mission.
1941 - USS Enterprise (CV 6) sails from Pearl Harbor for Wake Island to ferry Marine aircraft to the island. By Dec. 5, there are no carriers left at Pearl Harbor.
Photo: USS Enterprise operating in the Pacific, circa late June 1941. She is turning into the wind to recover aircraft. Note her "natural wood" flight deck stain and dark Measure 1 camouflage paint scheme. The flight deck was stained blue in July 1941, during camouflage experiments that gave her a unique deck stripe pattern.
1944 - In a multi-destroyer gun action, USS Saufley (DD 465), USS Waller (DD 466), USS Pringle (DD 477), and USS Renshaw (DD 499) sink the Japanese submarine I-46 in Leyte Gulf.