USS Goldsborough (APD-32), 1944

USS Goldsborough (APD-32), 1944

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USS Goldsborough (APD-32), 1944

Here we see the Clemson class destroyer USS Goldsborough (APD-32) at sea off the Charleston Navy Yard on 6 April 1944. The most obvious sign of her conversion into a fast transport are the two port side landing craft that almost hide the smoke stacks.

Greene sailed from Newport 5 June 1919 for Brest via Plymouth, England, and returned to New York 27 July. Underway again 18 August, she put in at San Diego, Calif., 22 December and decommissioned there in March 1920. Remaining in the Reserve Destroyer Force until 10 September 1921, she sailed from San Diego that date for the Puget Sound Navy Yard. Greene returned shortly thereafter to San Francisco, arriving 2 December 1921, and decommissioned there 17 June 1922.

Recommissioned 28 June 1940 at San Diego, Greene was towed to San Francisco and was redesignated AVD-13 6 April 1941 following conversion. She sailed 27 April for the Caribbean and conducted training and tended seaplanes off Puerto Rico and Bermuda.

One week after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor Greene sailed for Brazil. Until the summer of 1942 she served as seaplane tender at Natal with one call at Rio de Janeiro for repairs in February 1942. She returned to Charleston 18 July 1942. She escorted a convoy from Norfolk to Bermuda and operated in the South Atlantic for the next 6 months as. a convoy escort, making two voyages to Rio de Janeiro. Back at Norfolk 26 February 1943, she steamed thence to Argentia, Newfoundland, to operate with Bogue, one of the new escort carriers designed to hunt down German submarines in the North Atlantic. Both warships sailed 23 April to escort a convoy to Londonderry, Ireland, and made the eastward passage without incident. On the return leg of the voyage, however, one of the first major engagements between carrier-based aircraft and submarines attempting a rendezvous for mass attack occurred 21&ndash22 May when Bogue&rsquos planes made six attacks on submarines and sank U-569 in 50-40 N., 35-21 W. Twenty-four Germans were captured. During a second antisubmarine patrol from 31 May to 20 June 1943, Bogue and her escorts, including Greene, shared repeated, successes, sinking U-317 5 June in 30-18 N., 42-50 W., and U-118 in 30-49 N., 33-49 W. one week later. For these two successful antisubmarine operations Greene received the Presidential Unit Citation. The Bogue group was the first of a series of hunter-killer units which was to spell the doom of the German submarine menace.

Subsequently, until the fall of 1943 Greene escorted a fast troop convoy from Norfolk to the United Kingdom and return, and operated off Bermuda. On 5 October she sailed as carrier escort for Core in company with Belknap and Goldsborough. On 20 October the group sank E-378 in 47-40 N., 28-27 W.

Greene returned to Charleston 19 January 1944 for conversion to high speed transport and was designated APD-36 on 1 February 1944. After intensive training she stood out 12 April for Oran, Algeria, to take part in Operation Dragoon&mdashthe invasion of Southern France. On 14 August, when she left the staging area at Propriano, Corsica, and landed American and Canadian troops on the Levant and Port Cros Islands off the coast of France between Toulon and Cannes. Greene&rsquos troops were assigned to the mission of seizing the strategic islands and silencing long range coastal batteries thought to be emplaced there. That day, the islands were secured&mdashmany of the German &ldquoguns&rdquo turned out to be stove pipes&mdashand the stage was set for the 15 August D-day assault on the mainland.

With her tasks accomplished, Greene served on escort duty in the Mediterranean until departing Oran 6 December 1944 for Norfolk, where she put in 21 December. Underway once more 29 January 1945, the far-ranging warship steamed via Panama to reach Ulithi 31 March and commenced escort duties. During April she escorted four carriers to Okinawa while the battle for that island raged. She returned to Guam to meet another Okinawan convoy, and stood antisubmarine picket line duty off Okinawa. Until the fall of 1945 Greene continued escort duties between Okinawa, Saipan, and the Philippines. At war&rsquos end, she evacuated ex-prisoners of war from Nagasaki after that port had been razed by the second atomic bomb dropped on Japan, and moored at Okinawa 24 September.

Greene&rsquos long dynamic career came to an end in a dramatic manner. During the famous 9 October 1945 typhoon at Okinawa, winds in excess of 100 knots drove her aground on the northwest coast of Kutaka. Damaged beyond economical repair, all useful material was salvaged. She decommissioned 23 November 1945. Greene was struck from the Navy List 5 December 1945.

In addition to her Presidential Unit Citation, Greene earned four battle stars during World War II, three on her European-African-Middle Eastern campaign ribbon and one on her Asiatic-Pacific campaign ribbon for participation in the following operations:

Update for August 2018 at Great Roman Civil War, Peninsular War, Italian campaign, Lockheed Aircraft, German and Italian artillery, Clemson class destroyers,

This month we finally post our article on the Great Roman Civil War, many years after it was first written! We also add three articles on the battles of the war, including Caesar’s adventure in Egypt.

Our series on the Peninsular War covers some of the clashes between the French and Spanish guerrillas in the north in 1813 and the start of the Castalla campaign in the east.

For the Second World War we post our overview of the battles for the Winter Line or Gustav Line, the main battle of the entire campaign, and some of the smaller battles fought within that overall campaign.

On military equipment we cover a wide variety of Lockheed aircraft, two German railway guns including the famous ‘Paris Gun’, and the six models of 76.2mm division guns used by the Soviets during the Second World War. At sea we cover eight Clemson class destroyers, with a range of careers. In the air we are coming towards the end of our series on USAAF groups, posting some of the last fighter groups.

Great Roman Civil War

The Great Roman Civil War (50-44 BC) was triggered by the rivalry between Julius Caesar and his conservative opposition in the Senate, and saw Caesar defeat all of his enemies in battles scattered around the Roman world, before famously being assassinated in Rome on the Ides of March, triggering yet another round of civil wars. The siege of Corfinium (early 49 BC) was the first military action of the Great Roman Civil War and saw Caesar quickly overwhelm an attempt to defend the city against him.

The siege of Brundisium (49 BC) saw a brief confrontation between Pompey and Caesar at the start of the Great Roman Civil War, before Pompey escaped to Epirus.

The battle of Pharsalus (9 August 48 BC) was the decisive battle of the Great Roman Civil War, and saw Caesar defeat Pompey and the Senate’s main army.

The siege of Alexandria (August 48 BC-January/ February 47 BC) saw Julius Caesar become trapped in the city after getting involved in Egyptian politics. He was only able to escape after a relief army reached the city, allowing him to defeat Ptolemy XIII and his allies at the battle of the Nile.

The combat of Roncal (12-13 May 1813) was a partly successful French attempt to defeat the successful guerrilla leader Francisco Espoz y Mina by attacking his magazines, depots and hospitals.

The combat of Lequeitio (30 May 1813) was a rare success for the French in the north of Spain during their attempts to capture or destroy the Spanish guerrilla bands.

The combat of Albeyda (15 March 1813) was a minor British success in eastern Spain, and was meant to be followed by an amphibious attack on Valencia which was cancelled before it began.

The combat of Yecla (11 April 1813) was a French success at the start of the Castalla campaign that saw Suchet’s Army of Valencia split the Allied army facing them on the Xucar, giving Suchet a chance of inflicting a serious defeat on Murray’s army of Alicante.

The siege of Villena (12 April 1813) was a quick French victory that briefly appeared to have opened the road to Castalla and the main body of General Murray’s Army of Alicante.

The combat of Biar (12 April 1813) was a successful British rearguard action that delayed Suchet’s advance and reduced his chances of winning a major victory over Murray’s Army of Alicante.

The battle of the Sangro (20 November- 4 December 1943) was the first part of the Eighth Army contribution to the attack on the Gustav Line, the main German defensive position south of Rome.

The battle of the Moro River (4-26 December 1943) was part of the Eighth Army attack on the Gustav Line, the main German defensive position south of Rome, and came after the British had broken through the main Gustav line position in the east of Italy, behind the Sangro River.

The battle of Ortona (20-27 December 1943) saw the Canadians capture a key part of the Adriatic section of the Gustav Line in the first major urban battle of the Italian campaign, but by the time it ended the Eighth Army was in no condition to carry out further offensive operations.

The battles of the Winter Line or Gustav Line (12 January-18 May 1944) were the most important battles of the Italian campaign, and saw the Germans under Kesselring keep the Allies pinned down south of Rome from the autumn of 1943 until the summer of 1944.

The Lockheed T-33 was a two-seat training version of the P-80 Shooting Star, originally developed using Lockheed’s own funds, but soon adopted by the USAF and was produced in impressively large numbers.

The Lockheed F-94 was an all weather fighter produced to fill a gap in the USAF’s post-war arsenal. It entered service late in 1949 and remained in service for a decade, seeing some service in Korea.

The Lockheed T2V-1/ T-1 was an improved version of the T-33 trainer, produced as a deck landing trainer for the US Navy.

The Lockheed W2V-1 was a design for an airborne early warning aircraft to be based on the Lockheed Model 1649 Starliner. Two examples were ordered early in 1957, but then cancelled a few months later.

The Lockheed XR6O was a massive transport aircraft that was produced for the US Navy during the Second World War, but that had a low priority and wasn’t completed until after the end of the war.

The Lockheed YO-3A was a very quiet surveillance aircraft, designed to fly low and silently over Vietnam in an attempt to locate hidden Communist troops.

The 17cm S.K. L/40 ‘Samuel’ in Raderlafette auf Eisenbahnwagen (wheeled carriage on railway wagon) was a fairly simple railway mounting for 17cm fast loading guns taken from German naval stocks.

The lange 21cm Kanone in Schiessgerüst (long 21cm gun in firing platform) or Paris Gun was a very long range railway gun that was just about able to hit Paris from positions behind the German lines, and caused a brief panic when it first entered combat in 1918.

The 76.2mm Divisional Gun Model 00/02 was the standard Russian field gun during the First World War, and a modified version was still in use in large numbers at the start of the Second World War.

The 76.22mm Divisional Gun Model 02/30 was an updated of the First World War era Model 00/02, and was still in service in large numbers during the Second World War.

The 76.2mm Divisional Gun Model 1933 combined a new L/50 gun with an existing howitzer carriage to produce a serviceable gun that was meant to serve as a stop-gap until the more modern Model 1936 F-22 gun was ready to enter service.

The 76.2mm Divisional Gun Model 1936 (F-22) introduced a new split trail, and largely replaced the older Model 1933 in Soviet Service.

The 76.2mm Divisional Gun Model 1939 USV was the best Soviet 76mm gun at the start of the Second World War, and was lighter than the previous Model 1936 F-22.

The 76.2mm Divisional Canon Model 1942 (ZiS 3) was the most numerous Soviet field gun of the Second World War, and was mass produced after the German invasion of 1941.

Clemson Class Destroyers

USS Satterlee (DD-190) was a Clemson class destroyer that had a short US career before being transferred to the Royal Navy, where she served as USS Belmont before being sunk by U-81.

USS Mason (DD-191) was a Clemson class destroyer that had a limited US career, and then served in the North Atlantic with the Royal Navy as HMS Broadwater, before being sunk by U-101.

USS Graham (DD-192) was a Clemson class destroyer that had a short active career with the US Navy before being sold for scrap in 1922.

USS Abel P Upshur (DD-193) was a Clemson class destroyer that served with the US Coast Guard and the Neutrality Patrol before being transferred to the Royal Navy, where she served as HMS Clare.

USS Hunt (DD-194) was a Clemson class destroyer that briefly served with the US Neutrality Patrol before being transferred to the Royal Navy as HMS Broadway, where she helped capture U-110.

USS Welborn C. Wood (DD-195) was a Clemson class destroyer that served with the US Coast Guard and the Neutrality Patrol, before serving with the Royal Navy as HMS Chesterfield, carrying out three years of convoy escort duties.

USS George E. Badger (DD-196/ AVP-16/ AVD-3/ APD-33) was a Clemson class destroyer that served with the US Coast Guard, as a seaplane tender in 1940-42, on convoy escort duties and finally as a fast transport in the Pacific theatre.

USS Branch (DD-197) was a Clemson class destroyer that had a brief career with the US Navy before serving with the Royal Navy as HMS Beverley, where she performed valuable service as a convoy escort before finally being sunk by U-188 in the spring of 1943.

The 326th Fighter Group was a training unit that served with the First Air Force from 1942 until 1944.

The 327th Fighter Group was a training group that served with the First Air Force in the US from 1942 until 1944.

The 328th Fighter Group was a training unit based in the US South-West from 1942 until 1944.

The 329th Fighter Group (USAAF) was a training unit that served with the US Fourth Air Force from 1942 to 1944.

The 332nd Fighter Group (USAAF) served in Italy in 1944-45, and spent most of that time escorting the heavy bombers of the Fifteenth Air Force.

The 337th Fighter Group (USAAF) was a training group that served with the Third Air Force in the south-east of the United States from 1942 until 1944.

The 338th Fighter Group (USAAF) was a training unit that served with the Third Air Force from 1942 until 1944.

The 339th Fighter Group (USAAF) served with the Eighth Air Force, mainly as a bomber escort group, but with some other missions added.

The 412th Fighter Group was an experimental unit that was used to gain experience with the new generation of jet aircraft.

Madness in Mogadishu, Michael Whetstone.

The story of one of the infantry commanders involved in the ‘Black Hawk Down’ incident in Mogadishu, taking part in the rescue mission. Whetstone tells a fascinating story, and gives us an insight into a successful infantry unit, looking at the training, attitude and skills required to overcome heavy odds to achieve their objectives and escape with light losses.

The Battle of Monroe's Crossroads and the Civil War's Final Campaign, Eric Wittenberg.

A study of the final major cavalry battle of the American Civil War, a Confederate surprise attack that achieved initial success before the Union forces rallied and regained control of the battlefield. Looks at the two forces involved, the battle itself and its impact on the remaining few weeks of the Civil War. The author is perhaps a little over-impressed with the initial Confederate success, but other than that this is a well balanced account of a relatively obscure but interesting late Civil War battle

Emperor Alexander Severus - Rome’s Age of Insurrection, AD 222-236, John S. McHugh.

A biography of the last Severan emperor (admittedly one with a very limited link to the founder of the dynasty), looking at the turbulent life and times of the last emperor before the start of the Third Century Crisis. An interesting look at how an Emperor from a dynasty of political outsiders managed to survive for a surprisingly long time, despite coming to the throne as a child

Decisive Victory - the Battle of the Sambre, 4 November 1918, Derek Clayton.

Looks at the BEF’s last major battle of the First World War, in which the Germans were forced out of their last prepared defensive line in a single day, marking the start of the final collapse of German resistance and the start of the rush to the Armistice. Aims to look at the level of skill displayed by the BEF towards the end of the victorious 100 Days campaign, tracing the balance between skill, experience and exhaustion

Gaius Marius - The Rise and Fall of Rome’s Saviour, Marc Hyden.

Looks at the career of one of the key figures in the fall of the Roman Republic, a general whose victories saved the Republic from foreign invasion, but whose ambition helped trigger the series of civil wars that saw its eventual collapse into chaos that only ended with the victory of Augustus and the foundation of the Empire. A good biography of an important historical figure, aimed at the general reader rather than the specialist in Roman history

Aircraft of the Luftwaffe 1935-1945, Jean-Denis G.G. Lepage.

Combines a good background history of the Luftwaffe with a comprehensive examination of its aircraft, from the biplanes of the mid 1930s to the main wartime aircraft and on to the seemingly unending range of experimental designs that wasted so much effort towards the end of the war. A useful general guide that provides an impressively wide range of information on almost every element of the Luftwaffe

Medieval Warfare Vol VI, Issue 1: Reign of the Leper King - The Kingdom of Jeruslem .

Focuses on the later years of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, and in particular the reign of Baldwin IV, the Leper King, a short-lived but fairly effective king who managed to hold off the rising power of Saladin. Also looks at Odin's reputation as a warrior, the military career of St. Francis of Assisi, the Grand Chevauchee of 1355 and the purpose built war wagons of the Hussites

Medieval Warfare Vol VI, Issue 3: Legacy of Ancient Rome - The Byzantine-Sassanid Wars .

Focuses on the later wars between Byzantium and her eastern neighbours, the Sassanids, a series of conflicts that left both powers exhausted and unable to resist the Arab conquests. Covers the main course of the final war, the armour of the Sassanids, Byzantine commanders, the motives of the defeated Sassanid emperor and the final events of the war. Also looks at Japanese and English longbows, the Livonian crusades and the battle of Loch Lochy.

Medieval Warfare Vol VI, Issue 6: The Masses are Rising – The German Peasant's Revolt .

Focuses on the German Peasant's Revolt, one of the more famous of the surprisingly rare large scale peasant's revolts, and no more successful than any of the others, despite coming at a time of religious turmoil and affecting large parts of the German speaking world. Looks at why the revolt started, who took part in it and why it failed. Also looks at the soldier in 16th century art, the Norman royal forests and the military flail.

Formidable - A True Story of disaster and courage, Steve R. Dunn.

Looks at the full story behind the loss of HMS Formidable, a British battleship sunk by a U-boat on 1 January 1915 while under the overall command of an Admiral who at that point didn’t accept that the submarine posed a threat to his fleet. Sections on why she was lost and who was to blame are balanced by detailed examinations of the fate of her crew, the dependents of those lost with her and the public reaction to her lose to produce a useful account of this naval disaster

Hold at All Costs! The Epic Battle of Delville Wood 1916, Ian Uys.

A very detailed look at the battle of Delville Wood, one of the most intense parts of the battle of the Somme, and an important battle for the South Africans, who held the wood against determined German counter attacks for the first few days of the battle. Does a good job of covering the battle from both sides, using detailed German sources to demonstrate that both sides suffered heavy losses during the fighting

F-15C Eagle vs MiG-23/25 Iraq 1991, Douglas C. Dildy & Tom Cooper.

Looks at the war in which the west realised that it’s best fighter aircraft outclassed their feared Soviet opponents, despite the limitations of the weapons it was armed with. Studies the background to the war, the development of the aircraft and their weapons, the way they were controlled, and the results of the limited number of clashes between the F-15s and the two Soviet types


This section lists the names and designations that the ship had during its lifetime. The list is in chronological order.

    Buckley Class Type TE Destroyer Escort
    Keel Laid March 29 1943 - Launched June 6 1943

Naval Covers

This section lists active links to the pages displaying covers associated with the ship. There should be a separate set of pages for each incarnation of the ship (ie, for each entry in the "Ship Name and Designation History" section). Covers should be presented in chronological order (or as best as can be determined).

Since a ship may have many covers, they may be split among many pages so it doesn't take forever for the pages to load. Each page link should be accompanied by a date range for covers on that page.


This section lists examples of the postmarks used by the ship. There should be a separate set of postmarks for each incarnation of the ship (ie, for each entry in the "Ship Name and Designation History" section). Within each set, the postmarks should be listed in order of their classification type. If more than one postmark has the same classification, then they should be further sorted by date of earliest known usage.

A postmark should not be included unless accompanied by a close-up image and/or an image of a cover showing that postmark. Date ranges MUST be based ONLY ON COVERS IN THE MUSEUM and are expected to change as more covers are added.
>>> If you have a better example for any of the postmarks, please feel free to replace the existing example.

USS Goldsborough (APD-32), 1944 - History

Charles Kleinsmith, born 28 September 1904 in Zionville, Pa., enlisted in the Navy 26 October 1922 as an apprentice seaman. Until honorably discharged 5 October 1926 as Fireman Second Class, he served on board several ships, including Wyoming (BB-32) and Maryland (BB-46). Kleinsmith reenlisted 20 December 1928, and during the next 11 years he had duty on board Milwaukee (CL-5), Cincinnati (CL-6), Portland (CA-33), and Honolulu (CL-48),. He reported on board Saratoga (CV-3) 27 December 1939 and transferred to Yorktown (CV-5) 31 October 1940. During the Battle of Midway 4 June 1942, Kleinsmith maintained auxillary power on Yorktown after an in-tense enemy bombing attack extinguished the fires in all boilers but one. Despite the stifling fumes, intense beat, and imminence of explosion, he performed courageously, enabling the fighting carrier to attain speed necessary for launching plances to oppose a Japanese aerial torpedo attack. At the end of the attack, Chief Watertender Kleinsmith was missing and presumed dead. He was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross.

The name Kleinsmith was assigned to DE-376 31 May 1944, but construction of the ship was canceled 6 June 1944.

(APD-134: dp. 1,450 1. 306' b. 36'10" dr. 13'6" s. 23.6 k. cpl. 204 a. 1 5", 6 40mm., 6 20mm., 2 dct. el Crosley)

Originally designated DE-718, a Rudderow-class destroyer escort, Kleinsmith was redesignated as APD-134 on 17 July 1944 launched 27 January 1945 by Defoe Shipbuilding Co., Bay City, Mich. sponsored by Mrs. Mary Agnes Kleinsmith and commissioned at New Orleans 12 June 1945, Lt. Comdr. Alden J. Laborde in command.

After shakedown out of Guantanamo Bay, Kleinsmith arrived Norfolk 21 July. Departing 4 August for the Pacific, the high-speed transport steamed via San Diego and Pearl Harbor and reached Buckner Bay, Okinawa, 1 October. She operated between Okinawa and the Japanese home islands until 21 February 1946 then she sailed from Sasebo via the Marshalls and Pearl Harbor, arriving San Francisco 24 March with 118 returning veterans embarked. Departing 10 April, she proceeded via the Panama Canal to the East Coast, arriving Norfolk I May.

Based at Norfolk and Little Creek, Va., during the next 6 years, Kleinsmith operated along the Atlantic coast from Labrador to Venezuela while conducting amphibious and antisubmarine operations. She served primarily as an amphibious command ship many of her cruises carried her into the Caribbean, where she operated out of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and Guantanamo Bay.

Returning from the Caribbean 13 February 1951, Kleinsmith, departed Little Creek 5 March on the first of four deployments to the Mediterranean. Arriving Gilbralter 15 March with UDT personnel embarked, she deployed with the mighty 6th Fleet and participated in amphibious operations that ranged from Oran, Algeria, to Phaleron Bay, Greece. After serving as amphibious control ship, she departed Gilbralter 26 June for the United States, arriving Little Creek 6 July. On 19 July 1952 she departed for a 4-month deployment with the 6th Fleet and supported its important peace-keeping activities off the troubled lands of the Mediterranean.

Returning to Little Creek 29 January 1955, Kleinsmith resumed operations along the eastern seaboard to the caribbean. On 9 January 1957 she again departed for duty with the 6th Fleet and for almost 3 months operated in the Eastern Mediterranean. In response to an urgent request from King Hussein of Jordan, whose government was threatened with leftist-oriented, Egyptian-supported subversion, Kleinsmith departed La Spezia, Italy, 25 April for the Levantine Coast. Arriving off Beirut, Lebanon, 30 April, she joined ships of the 6th Fleet in a formidable display of seapower, designed to show U.S. determination that the integrity and independence of nations in the Middle East would be guaranteed against Communist subversion or aggression. Remaining on station until 3 May, she then departed Rhodes, Greece, 18 May and returned to Little Creek 1 June.

In less than 3 months Kleinsmith sailed once again for the Mediterranean, arriving Palermo, Sicily, 15 September. During the previous August, a pro-Soviet takeover of the Syrian Army had threatened the stability of the Middle East. The high-speed transport proceeded to the Eastern Mediterranean 19 September and operated there to prevent aggression and to preserve peace. She departed Barcelona, Spain, 4 November arrived Little Creek 17 November.


This section lists the names and designations that the ship had during its lifetime. The list is in chronological order.

    Rudderow Class Destroyer Escort
    Keel Laid March 28 1944
    Launched June 15 1944 as DE-712
    Redesignated Crosley Class High-speed Transport (APD) July 17 1944

Struck from Naval Register November 15 1974

Naval Covers

This section lists active links to the pages displaying covers associated with the ship. There should be a separate set of pages for each name of the ship (for example, Bushnell AG-32 / Sumner AGS-5 are different names for the same ship so there should be one set of pages for Bushnell and one set for Sumner). Covers should be presented in chronological order (or as best as can be determined).

Since a ship may have many covers, they may be split among many pages so it doesn't take forever for the pages to load. Each page link should be accompanied by a date range for covers on that page.


This section lists examples of the postmarks used by the ship. There should be a separate set of postmarks for each name and/or commissioning period. Within each set, the postmarks should be listed in order of their classification type. If more than one postmark has the same classification, then they should be further sorted by date of earliest known usage.

A postmark should not be included unless accompanied by a close-up image and/or an image of a cover showing that postmark. Date ranges MUST be based ONLY ON COVERS IN THE MUSEUM and are expected to change as more covers are added.
>>> If you have a better example for any of the postmarks, please feel free to replace the existing example.

Postmark Type
Killer Bar Text

Post Office Established January 29 1945 - Disestablished May 10 1946

Other Information

Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons.
American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp) - National Defense Service Medal

NAMESAKE - Salvatore John Cavallaro USNR (September 6 1920 - September 9 1943)
Cavallaro enlisted in the Naval Reserve January 6 1942, and was commissioned Ensign January 28 1943. After training in landing craft, he joined USS LYON AP-71. In the invasion of Sicily, he was assigned to guide the landing of the waves of assault boats, and with skill and courage, under repeated strafing and bombing attacks, carried on throughout the night and early daylight hours of July 10 1943. Assigned similar duty in the invasion of Salerno Gulf September 9 1943, he was killed in action when his LCT was struck by shellfire. He was posthumously awarded The Navy Cross for his gallant service at Sicily

If you have images or information to add to this page, then either contact the Curator or edit this page yourself and add it. See Editing Ship Pages for detailed information on editing this page.

Create connection to database

Connect to an existing database file

from sqlite3 import Error

Name of the .db file as a string

will print connected in terminal if python finds the file. The function will then return the connection object so that it can be used later. If Python does not find the file an error is thrown.

Will output connected in terminal

Adding a record to database

Function will insert values into the projects table

from sqlite3 import Error

.db file must have a table created (in this case a table called projects)

A connection to the .db file use create_connection function

A connection to the .db file

The values you want to pass into the database, these values must be enclosed in brackets and be seperated by commas

The .db file will have a new row with data added

Will return the id of the last row as an integer

Edit the name of the table and what the table colums are

Updating a record

Function will update values into the projects table

from sqlite3 import Error

.db file must have a table created (in this case a table called projects)

A connection to the .db file use create_connection function

A connection to the .db file

The values you want to pass into the database, these values must be enclosed in brackets and be seperated by commas, The last value must be the row id

The .db file will update the row specified

Will return the id of the last row as an integer

Print all records

Function will print all existing rows in sql table

from sqlite3 import Error

.db file must have a table created (in this case a table called projects)

A connection to the .db file use create_connection function

A connection to the .db file

Will show all rows in terminal. NOTHING IS RETURNED

Print rows with filter added

Function will print all existing rows in sql table

from sqlite3 import Error

.db file must have a table created (in this case a table called projects)

A connection to the .db file use create_connection function

A connection to the .db file

Will show all rows in terminal. NOTHING IS RETURNED

World War II Database

ww2dbase USS Preston entered service later in the war, in Mar 1944. She supported the invasion of Guam in Jul 1944 and then the invasion of Palau Islands in Sep 1944. Between Oct and Dec 1944, she escorted carriers in Philippine waters, participating in the naval battles off Leyte, Philippine Islands early in the campaign. In early 1945, she escort carriers into the South China Sea during Operation Gratitude, and then went on to serve in a similar role during the invasion of Iwo Jima. During the Okinawa invasion, she served initially as an escort to carriers, than provided naval gunfire for ground troops on the Motobu Peninsula, at Nago Bay, Nakagusu Bay, and the Naha area she also bombarded positions on nearby Ie Shima and Kutaka Shima islands. She would remain in the Okinawa area until the end of the war. She was decommissioned in California, United States in 1946. She returned to service as the Korean War began, in 1951, although she would not arrive in Korean waters until May 1953, where she would again serve in carrier escort duties as she had during WW2. In the 1960s, she served two tours of duty off Vietnam during the Vietnam War and warned a Presidential Unit Commendation. She was decommissioned from the US Navy for the final time on 15 Nov 1969. Transferred to Turkey later on the same day, she operated under the new name of Icel (D 344) until 1981. Icel was broken up for scrap later in 1981.

ww2dbase Source: Wikipedia

Last Major Revision: Nov 2014

Destroyer Preston (Fletcher-class) (DD-795) Interactive Map

Preston (Fletcher-class) Operational Timeline

13 Jun 1943 The keel of Preston was laid down by Bethlehem Shipbuilding at San Pedro, California, United States.
12 Dec 1943 Preston was launched at San Pedro, California, United States, sponsored by sponsored by Mrs. R. F. Gross.
20 Mar 1944 USS Preston was commissioned into service with Commander Goldsborough S. Patrick in command.
1 Jul 1944 USS Preston departed Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii.
17 Jul 1944 USS Preston arrived off Guam.
8 Aug 1944 USS Preston arrived at Apra harbor, Guam.
10 Aug 1944 USS Preston departed Apra harbor, Guam for Eniwetok, Marshall Islands.
29 Aug 1944 USS Preston departed Eniwetok, Marshall Islands with Task Force 38.
6 Sep 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Palau Islands.
7 Sep 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Palau Islands.
8 Sep 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Palau Islands.
15 Sep 1944 USS Preston supported the invasion of Palau Islands.
6 Oct 1944 USS Preston set sail with Task Force 38.
5 Nov 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Philippine Islands.
12 Nov 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
25 Nov 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
26 Nov 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
27 Nov 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
28 Nov 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
29 Nov 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
30 Nov 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
1 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
2 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
10 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
11 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
12 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
13 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
14 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
15 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
16 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
17 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
18 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
18 Dec 1944 Many ships from the United States Third Fleet, Task Force 38 sailed into Typhoon Cobra in the Philippine Sea. Three destroyers and 790 men were lost.
19 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
20 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
21 Dec 1944 USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands.
30 Dec 1944 USS Preston departed waters off Philippine Islands for Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
21 Mar 1945 USS Preston departed for Ryukyu Islands.
24 Mar 1945 USS Preston arrived off Kerama Islands, Japan.
6 Sep 1945 USS Preston departed Okinawa, Japan.
20 Sep 1945 Lieutenant Commander John B. Carroll was named the commanding officer of USS Preston.
24 Sep 1945 USS Preston arrived at San Pedro, California, United States.
24 Apr 1946 USS Preston was decommissioned from service and was placed into the Pacific Reserve Fleet.
26 Jan 1951 USS Preston was recommissioned into service.
26 Jan 1951 Commander Frederick D. Riley, Jr. was named the commanding officer of USS Preston.
9 Jan 1952 USS Preston departed the east coast of the United States for the Mediterranean Sea.
12 Mar 1953 Commander Joseph R. Tenanty was named the commanding officer of USS Preston, replacing Commander Ralph S. Stevens, Jr.
1 Apr 1953 USS Preston arrived in northeastern United States.
20 Dec 1954 Commander Ernest R. Peterson was named the commanding officer of USS Preston.
15 Mar 1956 USS Preston departed Narragansett Bay in northeastern United States.
15 Apr 1956 USS Preston arrived at Long Beach, California, United States.
18 Jul 1959 Commander Richard S. Moore was named the commanding officer of USS Preston, replacing Lieutenant Commander Albert M. Sackett.
7 Oct 1961 Commander Anthony J. Kodis was named the commanding officer of USS Preston.
5 Sep 1963 Commander Harry D. Johnston was named the commanding officer of USS Preston
9 Jul 1965 Commander James O. Lyon was named the commanding officer of USS Preston
15 Jan 1966 USS Preston departed Vietnamese waters.
10 Mar 1967 Commander David G. Ramsey was named the commanding officer of USS Preston
15 Nov 1969 USS Preston was decommissioned from service her final commanding officer was Commander John A. Coinier. The ship was struck from the US Navy Register. Later on the same day, Preston was transferred to Turkey, whose navy would operate her under the name Icel (D 344).

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After shakedown, she was based at Charleston, South Carolina, while operating in Caribbean waters and along the eastern seaboard from Jacksonville, Florida, to Boston. Returning to Philadelphia on 6 June 1922, she was decommissioned there on 11 August 1922.

She was subsequently transferred to the Treasury Department on 1 October 1930 for use by the Coast Guard. She was reacquired by the Navy on 21 May 1934 and redesignated AVP-16 on 1 October 1939.

World War II Edit

Badger recommissioned at Philadelphia on 8 January 1940, Lieutenant Commander Frank Akers in command. During the next year she engaged in training operations in the Caribbean. Redesignated AVD-3 on 2 August 1940, she returned to Norfolk, Virginia on 12 January 1941 and subsequently tended planes while based at NS Argentia, Newfoundland, and Reykjavík, Iceland, until the spring of 1942.

Ordered to Charleston, on 26 May 1942, she escorted convoys along the eastern seaboard, in the Gulf of Mexico, and to Recife and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, until returning to Norfolk on 15 January 1943 to be fitted out for Atlantic convoy duty. Through the spring of 1943 she operated out of Argentia escorting convoys bound for the United Kingdom. In June, she underwent overhaul at Norfolk, then sailed on 13 July for North Africa. Steaming with Bogue and Clemson, she sank U-613 on 23 July 1943 after four depth charge attacks broke up the deep-running submarine southwest of Sao Miguel, Azores all 48 crew on board died. This victory came just a few hours before planes from Bogue attacked and sank U-521 not far away.

After a landfall at Casablanca, Badger returned to New York on 23 August. During the next two months she made another escort voyage from New York to Casablanca, then returned to New York on 21 October. Departing Hampton Roads on 14 November, she sailed for North Africa with Bogue, Osmond Ingram, Du Pont, and Clemson on an offensive anti-submarine patrol. On 12 December 1943, in the mid-Atlantic west of the Canary Islands this patrol engaged U-172. A protracted fight ensued, with Grumman TBF Avenger and Grumman F4F Wildcat aircraft from Bogue dropping depth charges and Fido homing torpedoes, and the destroyers expending roughly 200 depth charges in total. After 27 hours, the submarine was sunk with the loss of 13 crew (46 survived the action).

After escorting another convoy from Norfolk to North Africa and back, Badger underwent conversion to high speed transport at Charleston and was redesignated APD-33 on 19 May 1944. Sailing for duty in the Pacific, she steamed via the West Coast and Pearl Harbor to Guadalcanal where she arrived on 12 August. From there she carried to the Palau Islands. Reaching Angaur Island on 12 September, she screened warships bombarding the island and from 14 to 16 September sent her frogmen ashore for reconnaissance and demolition work. Intelligence was gathered and obstacles on the beach removed before the ship got underway on 12 October for Leyte, where until 18 October she supported the reconnaissance and bombardment of the east coast of that strategic island and again landed her frogmen.

Departing on 21 October, she called at Kossol Passage, Manus, and Nouméa before participating in the Lingayen landings of 5–11 January 1945. In these she lent her effective fire support as requested, and on the first day of the landings, 5 January, shot down an attacking Japanese torpedo plane. Her frogmen landed on the beaches two days later, and, despite frequent air attacks, Badger continued screening during landings from 7 January until sailing on 11 January for Leyte and Ulithi.

Until the spring of 1945, the veteran warship was overhauled at Ulithi conducted patrols off Iwo Jima during heavy fighting on the island and escorted ships from Guam to Guadalcanal, Nouméa, and Manus. She sailed from Ulithi on 2 April 1945 for Okinawa with carriers delivering replacement aircraft, and subsequently escorted convoys from Saipan to Okinawa. Badger sailed from Eniwetok on 24 June for Pearl Harbor.

Ordered thence to San Francisco for reconversion, she reverted to DD-196 on 20 July 1945 and was later decommissioned at that port on 3 October 1945. George E. Badger was scrapped on 3 June 1946.

As of 2005, no other U.S. Navy ship has been named George E. Badger.

George E. Badger received eight battle stars for World War II service and a Presidential Unit Citation.

Naval/Maritime History 22nd of June - Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History

The Battle of Abtao was a naval battle fought on February 7, 1866, during the Chincha Islands War, between a Spanish squadron and a combined Peruvian-Chilean fleet, at the island of Abtao in the Gulf of Ancud near Chiloé Archipelago in south-central Chile. It reduced to a long-range exchange of fire between the two squadrons, as the Allied ships, anchored behind the island, were protected by shallow waters impracticable for the Spanish ships, whose gunnery, nevertheless, proved more accurate and inflicted damage to the Chilean and Peruvian ships.

Spanish screw frigates Blanca and Villa de Madridduring battle, by Federico Castellón Martínez. Naval Museum of Madrid

Sent by Peruvian president Mariano Ignacio Prado, who had rallied the South Americans in defense against Spanish aggression, the allies had sailed in convoy from the town of Ancud to the island of Abtao to wait for the arrival of two new corvettes acquired by Peru.

The Spanish commander Casto Méndez Núñez, informed about the location of the Peruvian-Chilean fleet, ordered that the steam frigates Villa de Madrid (Captain Claudio Alvar González) and Reina Blanca(Commander Juan Topete), lift the blockade on Valparaiso and sail towards Abtao to intercept the enemy fleet.

On January 16, 1866, the combined Peruvian-Chilean fleet, composed of the Peruvian frigates Apurímac and Amazonas and the recently captured and refurbished Chilean schooner Covadonga, had convoyed from the port of Ancud towards the shipyards on the little island of Abtao, at the head of the southern Chiloé Archipelago. On Abtao island, the Chileans had also built some military fortifications, which were strategically located at the end of a shallow and treacherous channel.

During the difficult trip, the 36-gun steam frigate Amazonas, suffering from the force of currents, collided with a submerged rock near Punta Quilque and sank. The rest of the allied ships arrived without problems, and remained in Abtao with orders to wait for the arrival of the Peruvian corvettes Unión and América in order to start the offensive against the Spanish force. These ships arrived on February 4, 1866 without being detected by the enemy ships.

Meanwhile, the Spanish force was informed by the aborigines about the presence of other ships near Abtao, and immediately set course to the island.

The frigates Villa de Madrid and Reina Blanca appeared off the inlet of Abtao on February 7, 1866, but did not enter, for fear of the shallow waters.

Manuel Villar, Commander of the Peruvian First Naval Division and commander of the combined fleet, ordered the attack when the Spaniards began to proceed through the widest channel. The allied ships (which included Apurímac, América, Unión, and Covadonga) formed a line of battle to cover both inlets of the channel with their artillery.

The Allied fleet opened fire at 15:30 hours from 1500 meters, followed by fire of the Spanish fleet, which showed great accuracy despite the two frigates being forced to shoot alternately due to the position of the Allied fleet. The Apurímac was hit three times at the water line, forcing her to move north. The América was hit six times. The Unión, where two crewman were killed, was hit three times, and the Covadonga, one. The Spanish ships received fourteen hits, mainly by the América and the Unión, which caused only little damage and left 6 crewmen wounded.

After two hours of battle and more of 1500 shots from each side, the Spanish frigates, seeing that the Allied fleet was well protected in her position around the shoals, decided to leave the reef and waited to go out to sea. But this did not happen, and at 9:00 am of the following day, the Spanish squadron returned to their base.

In his report to the Admiral Méndez Nuñez, the Spanish Captain Claudio Alvar González wrote:

In the ongoing conflict between Spain and the Peru-Chile alliance in the Chincha Islands War, two Spanish warships, Villa de Madrid and Blanca, sought to engage Chilean-Peruvian naval units and avenge earlier Spanish naval defeats. Attacking four enemy vessels in the narrow straits off the Chilean port of Abtao, the Spanish ships inflicted damage and casualties from a distance but could not follow up in water unsuitable for their larger vessels. (By John Osborne)

After the results of the battle of Abtao, the Rear Admiral Casto Méndez Núñez traveled south with the Numancia, Resolución and Reina Blanca to try to force a new confrontation with the allies. But his efforts were unsuccessful. The Allied fleet had moved to Huito, a position much more difficult to access than Abtao.

On March 25, the Peruvian corvettes Unión and América were sent to the Strait of Magellan to intercept the Spanish frigate Almansa, that according to intelligence reports, had been dispatched from Spain to reinforce the Pacific fleet. The Peruvian ships remained in the area for over a month, but were not able to locate it. The Almansa didn't arrive to the Pacific coast until the end of April. The Chilean government also sent steamer Maipú to the strait to intercept the Spanish steamers Odessa and Vascongada.

The rest of the Allied fleet remained on the defensive in southern Chile, awaiting the arrival of the ironclads Huáscar and Independencia, destined to become the factor that would change the force equilibrium. Both ships had departed from Brest on 26 February, in what was a long and difficult journey. They were accompanied by the British Steamer Thames, which transported coal and other provisions. On 30 March 1866, in front of Brazilian waters, the Peruvian ironclads caused new problems for the Spaniards by intercepting the bergantines Dorotea and Paco. The Dorotea was destroyed, while the Paco was able to avoid capture by moving quickly. On 22 August 1866 the Spanish frigate Gerona captured the Chilean schooner Pampero when it set sail from the jetty of Funchal to Chile.

Notable sailors in the battle
Sub-lieutenant Patricio Montojo y Pasarón, later to become an Admiral and commander-in-chief of the Spanish Navy in the Philippines during the Spanish–American War, participated in this battle from the frigate Almansa.

Lieutenants Arturo Prat (Chilean) and Miguel Grau (Peruvian), who were later to battle each other at the Naval Battle of Iquique, were comrades in this battle.


Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 February 1905 - The French cruiser Sully, an armored cruiser of the Gloire class, wrecked

The French cru iser Sully was an armored cruiser of the Gloire class that was built for the French Navy in the early 1900s. She was named in honor of Maximilien de Béthune, Duke of Sully, trusted minister of King Henry IV. The ship struck a rock in Hạ Long Bay, French Indochina in 1905, only eight months after she was completed, and was a total loss.

Design and description

Right elevation and plan of the Gloire-class armored cruisers

The Gloire-class ships were designed as enlarged and improved versions of the Gueydon-class armored cruisers by Emile Bertin. Her crew numbered 612 officers and men.[2] The ship measured 139.8 meters (458 ft 8 in) overall, with a beam of 20.2 meters (66 ft 3 in). Sully had a draft of 7.7 meters (25 ft 3 in) and displaced 10,014 metric tons (9,856 long tons).

Sully had three propeller shafts, each powered by one vertical triple-expansion steam engine, which were rated at a total of 20,500 indicated horsepower(15,300 kW). Twenty-four Belleville water-tube boilers provided steam for her engines. She had a designed speed of 21.5 knots (39.8 km/h 24.7 mph). She carried up to 1,590 long tons (1,620 t) of coal and could steam for 12,000 nautical miles (22,000 km 14,000 mi) at a speed of 10 knots (19 km/h 12 mph).

Sully's main armament consisted of two 194 mm (7.6 in) guns mounted in single-gun turrets fore and aft. Her intermediate armament was eight 164 mm (6.5 in)guns. Four of these were in single gun turrets on the sides of the ship and the other four were in casemates. For anti-torpedo boat defense, she carried six 100 mm (3.9 in) guns in casemates and eighteen 47 mm (1.9 in) Hotchkiss guns. She was also armed with five 450-millimeter (18 in) torpedo tubes two of these were submerged and the others were above water.

The waterline armored belt of the Gloire-class ships was 170 millimeters (6.7 in) thick amidships and tapered to 106 millimeters (4.2 in) towards the bow and stern. Above the main belt was another belt, 127 millimeters (5 in) thick that also tapered to 106 mm at the ends of the ship. The main gun turrets were protected by 173 millimeters (6.8 in) of armor and the intermediate turrets by 120 millimeters (4.7 in). The flat part of the lower armored deck was 45 millimeters (1.8 in), but increased to 64 millimeters (2.5 in) as it sloped down to the sides of the ship.

Sully was laid down at the Forges et Chantiers de la Méditerranée shipyard in La Seyne on 24 May 1899 and launched on 4 June 1901. The ship was completed in June 1904 and sent to French Indochina for her first commission. On 7 February 1905 Sully struck a rock in Hạ Long Bay her crew was not injured. Her guns and equipment were salvaged, but the ship broke in two and was abandoned as a total loss.

Amiral Aube at the Quebec Tercentenary, 1908

The Gloire -class cruisers were a group of five armored cruisers built for the French Navy during the first decade of the 20th century.

  • Gloire, launched 27 June 1900. Decommissioned in 1922 and subsequently broken up.
  • Marseillaise, launched 14 July 1900. Decommissioned in 1929 and subsequently broken up.
  • Sully, launched June 1901. Wrecked in Halong Bay, Tonkin, French Indochina, 30 September 1905.
  • Condé, launched 12 March 1902. Decommissioned in 1933 and used as a target.
  • Amiral Aube, launched 9 May 1902. Decommissioned in 1922 and subsequently broken up.

Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 February 1917 - SS California (1907) was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine SM U-85

The twin screw steamer California was built by D & W Henderson Ltd, Glasgow for the Line Ltd in 1907 as a replacement for the aging ocean liner Astoria, which had been in continuous service since 1884. She worked the Glasgow to New York transatlantic route and was sunk by the German submarine SM U-85 on 7 February 1917.

California delivering war brides to New York in 1911

SS California was 8,662 GRT (6,791 under deck and 5,403 net), with a length of 470 feet (140 m), a beam of 58.3 feet (17.8 m) and a draught of 34 feet (10 m). The California had three decks: the poop deck was 70 feet (21 m) long, the bridge 213 feet (65 m) long and the forecastle 91 feet (28 m) long. She had two black funnels, two giant masts (one fore and one aft), twin screw propeller propulsion and was capable of achieving a speed of 16 knots (30 km/h). She was fitted with a triple expansion engine with 6 cylinders of 271⁄2, 46 and 75 inches each pair it had a stroke of 54 inches and produced 827 nominal horsepower. The engine was built by the same company that built her hull. The ship was capable of carrying a total of 1214 passengers: 232 first class, 248 second class and 734 third class. She was outfitted with the latest appointments, including electric light and refrigerating machinery.

SS California in New York Harbor around 1907

She was officially launched on 9 July 1907, having been christened by the Lady Ure Primrose, wife of Sir John Ure Primrose, Lord Lieutenant of the County of the City of Glasgow. Captain J Blaikie was appointed to the ship that same year. She was given the call sign "HLQJ", and the official registration number 124230. Her maiden transatlantic voyage from Glasgow to New York began on 12 October 1907.

Grounding on Tory Island
On 28 June 1914 California ran aground on Tory Island off the north-west coast of Ireland in dense fog with over 1,000 passengers on board. The ship’s bows caved in upon impact, and though she took on water through two holes in her hold she remained above water. Three British warships including the destroyer Swift, as well as the ocean liner Cassandra, aided the stricken vessel and assisted in transferring stranded passengers back to shore. The ship was towed back to Glasgow on 20 August 1914, and less than two months later was repaired and refloated. She resumed Glasgow - Liverpool - New York sailings for the Cunard - joint service on 13 October 1915.

Fire in Manhattan
Shortly after 8 pm on 13 May 1916 a fire began in her Number 1 cargo hold as she was docked at Pier 64 on the North River in Manhattan. Of great concern to the first responders and her crew was that she was in the process of being loaded up with, amongst other things, highly volatile war munitions destined for Liverpool, England. The quick action of the Superintendent of the Pier, and his subsequent sounding of the alarm, led to a quick response by a nearby fireboat that assisted the crew in fighting the blaze. The fire was successfully extinguished shortly after 1030 pm that same night. The fire was ultimately deemed accidental, and as the damage was minimal,[vague] she set sail the following Monday as scheduled. Had the fire not been noticed by the superintendent in time, or had the ship been fully loaded with munitions when the fire erupted, the ship and surrounding section of Manhattan might have sustained a catastrophe comparable to the Halifax .

California sailed on her last Glasgow to New York voyage on 12 January 1917. She began her return voyage on 29 January 1917 with 184 crew and 31 passengers on board. On 3 February 1917, as she sailed on her return trip towards Scotland, German U-boats attacked and sank the SS Housatonic, an act which led to the breaking off of diplomatic relations between the United States and the German Empire.

On the morning of 7 February 1917 when homeward-bound and approaching Ireland under full steam, she was attacked by SM U-85 in a surprise attack. The German submarine, under the command of Kapitanleutenant Willy Petz, fired two torpedoes at California one struck the ship squarely on the port quarter near the Number 4 hatch. Five people were killed instantly in the explosion thirty-six people drowned either as the ship went down or when one filled lifeboat was swamped in the wake of the burning vessel, which plowed ahead losing little headway as she went down. She sank in nine minutes, 38 miles (61 km) W by S of Fastnet Rock, Ireland with a loss of 41 lives. Though Captain John L Henderson stayed on the bridge through the entire incident, and subsequently went down with the ship, incredibly he made his way to the surface and was rescued.

According to the Royal Navy, on 12 March 1917 the Q-ship HMS Privet avenged the sinking of California. Posing as an unarmed merchant vessel, the crew of Privet lured U-85 to the surface after sustaining heavy damage in an unprovoked attack by the submarine. As Privet’s highly trained crew feigned abandoning ship, they uncovered the ship’s hidden guns and opened fire on the submarine at close range. U-85 was sunk by gunfire, and Kapitanleutenant Petz and his crew of 37 men were killed.


Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
Other Events on 7 February

1758 - Cptn. Samuel Hood joined HMS Vestal (1757 - 32).

HMS Vestal was one of the four 32-gun Southampton-class fifth-rate frigates of the Royal Navy. She was launched in 1757 and was broken up in 1775.

During the Seven Years' War, on 21 February 1759, Vestal, under the command of Captain Samuel Hood, was part of a squadron under the command of Rear-Admiral Charles Holmes bound for North America. Vestalwas in advance of the squadron when she sighted a sail ahead, and set off in pursuit. Vestal came up to the enemy ship, the 32-gun Bellone, at 2 p.m. After a fierce engagement lasting four hours, Bellone surrendered, having forty men killed, and being totally dismasted. Vestal had only her lower masts standing, and had five killed and twenty wounded. She returned to Spithead with her prize, which was bought into the Navy and renamed Repulse. The prize money for the capture of the Bellone was paid out at Portsmouth from May 1760.

In June 1759 Vestal was part of Rear-Admiral George Brydges Rodney's squadron, which bombarded Le Havre destroying flat-bottomed boats and supplies which had been collected there for a planned invasion of England.

Scale: 1:48. A plan showing the body plan, sheer lines with inboard detail and figurehead, and longitudinal half-breadth for an unnamed 130ft French Fifth Rate, Frigate (circa 1760), as taken off prior to fitting as a British Frigate. The 'Flora' (1761), a 32-gun Fifth Rate, ex French Frigate Vestal (1757) has similar dimensions. The French identity comes from the shape and size of the tumblehome, the position of the wheel behind the mizzen mast, only one set of bits on the Upper Deck, and the lack of an Orlop Deck. The date is uncertain, but is likely to be sometime between 1756 and 1783, as Frigates become larger by the French Revolutionary Wars.

Admiral Samuel Hood, 1st Viscount Hood (12 December 1724 – 27 January 1816) was a Royal Navy officer. As a junior officer he saw action during the War of the Austrian Succession. While in temporary command of Antelope, he drove a French ship ashore in Audierne Bay, and captured two privateers in 1757 during the Seven Years' War. He held senior command as Commander-in-Chief, North American Station and then as Commander-in-Chief, Leeward Islands Station, leading the British fleet to victory at Battle of the Mona Passage in April 1782 during the American Revolutionary War. He went on to be Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth, then First Naval Lord and, after briefly returning to the Portsmouth command, became Commander-in-Chief, Mediterranean Fleet during the French Revolutionary Wars.

1793 - Cptn. Horatio Nelson joins HMS Agamemnon (1781 - 64).

HMS Agamemnon was a 64-gun third-rate ship of the line of the British Royal Navy. She saw service in the Anglo-French War, French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, and fought in many of the major naval battles of those conflicts. She is remembered as being Nelson's favourite ship, and was named after the mythical ancient Greek king Agamemnon, being the first ship of the Royal Navy to bear the name.

Scale: 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines with inboard detail, and longitudinal half-breadth for Raisonnable (1768), and later for Agamemnon (1781) and Belliqueux (1780), all 64-gun Third Rate, two-deckers. Signed by Thomas Slade [Surveyor of the Navy, 1755-1771], and John Williams [Surveyor of the Navy, 1765-1784]

The future Lord Nelson served as Agamemnon's captain from January 1793 for 3 years and 3 months, during which time she saw considerable service in the Mediterranean. After Nelson's departure, she was involved in the infamous 1797 mutinies at Spithead and the Nore, and in 1801 was present at the first Battle of Copenhagen, but ran aground before being able to enter the action.

Despite Nelson's fondness for the ship, she was frequently in need of repair and refitting, and would likely have been hulked or scrapped in 1802 had war with France not recommenced. She fought at the Battle of Trafalgar on 21 October 1805, as part of Nelson's weather column, where she forced the surrender of the Spanish four-decker Santísima Trinidad. Agamemnon's later career was served in South American waters off Brazil.

Her worn-out and poor condition contributed to her being wrecked when in June 1809 she grounded on an uncharted shoal in the mouth of the River Plate, whilst seeking shelter with the rest of her squadron from a storm. All hands and most of the ship's stores were saved, but the condition of the ship's timbers made it impossible to free the ship her captain was cleared of responsibility for the ship's loss thanks to documents detailing her defects. Recently, the wreck of Agamemnon has been located, and several artefacts have been recovered, including one of her cannons.

Vice Admiral Horatio Lord Nelson, by Lemuel Francis Abbott

1800 - The frigate USS Essex, commanded by Capt. Edward Preble, becomes the first U.S. Navy vessel to cross the Equator.

The first USS Essex of the United States Navy was a 36-gun or 32-gun sailing frigate that participated in the Quasi-War with France, the First Barbary War, and in the War of 1812. The British captured her in 1814 and she then served as HMS Essex until sold at public auction on 6 June 1837.

The frigate was built by Enos Briggs, Salem, Massachusetts, at a cost of $139,362 subscribed by the people of Salem and Essex County, to a design by William Hackett. Essex was armed with mostly short range carronades that could not hope to match the range of 18 and 24 pounder naval guns. She was launched on 30 September 1799. On 17 December 1799 she was presented to the United States Navy and accepted by Captain Edward Preble.

With the United States involved in naval action against France on 6 January 1800, Essex, under the command of Captain Preble, departed Newport, Rhode Island, in company with Congress to rendezvous with a convoy of merchant ships returning from Batavia, Dutch East Indies. Shortly after commencement of her journey, Essex became the first US Naval Ship to cross the Equator. Congress was dismasted only a few days out, and Essex was obliged to continue her voyage alone, making her mark as the first US man-of-war to double the Cape of Good Hope, both in March and in August 1800 prior to successfully completing her convoy mission in November.

Essex capturing Alert.

1810 - HMS Achates (10), Thomas Pinto, wrecked at Guadeloupe.

HMS Achates (1808) was a 10-gun Cherokee-class brig-sloop launched in 1808 and wrecked in 1810 off Guadeloupe.

1814 - During the War of 1812, the schooner USS Enterprise and the brig USS Rattlesnake capture and burn the British merchant brig Rambler in the Caribbean Sea.

1829 HMS Nightingale (8), Lt. George Wood, wrecked on the Shingles

1920 – Death of Alexander Kolchak, Russian admiral and explorer (b. 1874)

Alexander Vasilyevich Kolchak KB (Russian: Алекса́ндр Васи́льевич Колча́к 16 November [O.S. 4 November] 1874 – 7 February 1920) was an Imperial Russian admiral, military leader and polar explorer who served in the Imperial Russian Navy, who fought in the Russo-Japanese War and the First World War. During the Russian Civil War, he established an anti-communist government in Siberia—later the Provisional All-Russian Government—and was recognised as the "Supreme Leader and Commander-in-Chief of All Russian Land and Sea Forces" by the other leaders of the White movement from 1918 to 1920. His government was based in Omsk, in southwestern Siberia.

For 2 years, Kolchak was Russia's internationally recognized head of state. However, his effort to unite the White Movement failed Kolchak refused to consider autonomy for ethnic minorities and refused to cooperate with non-Bolshevik leftists, heavily relying on outside aid. This served only to boost the Reds morale, as it allowed them to label Kolchak as a "Western Puppet". As his White forces fell apart, he was betrayed and captured by the Czechoslovak Legion who handed him over to local Socialists-Revolutionaries, and he was soon after executed by the Bolsheviks.

1943 - USS Growler (SS-215) fights a desperate night battle with the Japanese supply ship Hayasaki , during which the boat's commanding officer, Lt. Cmdr. Howard W. Gilmore rams the enemy ship, badly bending Growler's bow. Wounded by machine gun fire and unable to go below, Gilmore gives the order "Take her down!," sacrificing himself so his submarine could dive to safety. For his "distinguished gallantry and valor" on this occasion and earlier in the patrol, he is posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor and promoted one rank.

USS Growler (SS-215), a Gato-class submarine, was the third ship of the United States Navy named for the growler. Her keel was laid down by the Electric Boat Company of Groton, Connecticut. She was launched on 2 November 1941 and sponsored by Mrs. Lucile E. Ghormley, wife of Vice Admiral Robert L. Ghormley, Special Naval Observer to the United Kingdom. The boat was commissioned on 20 March 1942 with Lieutenant Commander Howard W. Gilmore in command.

1945 - USS Thomason (DE 203) sinks the Japanese submarine RO 55 off Iba, Luzon. USS Bergall (SS 320) attacks a Japanese convoy and sinks Coast Defense Vessel No. 53 off Cam Ranh Bay. USS Guavina (SS 362) attacks a Japanese convoy and sinks merchant tanker Taigyo Maru, off Saigon, French Indochina while USS Parche (SS 384) sinks Japanese army cargo ship Okinoyama Maru in Tokara Retto.

USS Thomason (DE-203) was a Buckley-class destroyer escort of the United States Navy in World War II. She was named in honor of Marine Raider Sergeant Clyde A. Thomason (1914–1942), the first Marine to be awarded the Medal of Honor in World War II — posthumously, for heroism during the Makin Island raid.

1955 - Seventh Fleet ships began the evacuation of Chinese nationalists from Tachen Islands.


Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
8 February 1794 HMS Fortitude (1780 - 74), Cptn. William Young, and HMS Juno (1780 - 32) engaged tower on Mortella Point, Corsica an event which eventually led to the construction of 'Martello' towers on the south coast of England.
(some sources say 7th, some 8th February)

HMS Fortitude was a 74-gun third-rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, built by John Randall & Co. and launched on 23 March 1780 at Rotherhithe.

Under Captain Richard Bickerton, Fortitude served in the English Channel. In April 1781 she participated in the second relief of Gibraltar. In May 1781, during the Fourth Anglo–Dutch War, Vice-Admiral Hyde Parker'sshifted his flag from HMS Victory to Fortitude. On 5 August, Fortitude fought in the Battle of Dogger Bankas Parker's flagship. After a desperate, bloody battle in which neither combatant gained any advantage, both sides drew off.

French Revolutionary Wars
In 1793, under Captain William Young she sailed for the Mediterranean to join Admiral Sir Samuel Hood's fleet there.

On 7 February 1794 Fortitude, under the command of Captain William Young, and Juno attacked a tower at Mortella Point, on the coast of Corsica. The tower, though manned by only 33 men and heavily damaged by the ships' guns, held out for two days before surrendering to land-based forces under Sir John Moore, having lost two men mortally wounded. In her unsuccessful bombardment, Fortitude suffered extensive damage to her hull, masts, rigging and sails, particularly from heated shot, and had three lower-deck guns disabled. In all, she lost six men killed and 56 men wounded, including eight dangerously. The design of the tower so impressed the British that they made it the model for Martello Towers that they would later construct in Great Britain and many of their colonies.

The resistance of the Torra di Mortella to the British in 1794 inspired Martello towers

Under Captain Thomas Taylor Fortitude was involved in actions off Genoa on 13 March 1795, and Hyères on 13 July 1795. The action on 13 March resulted in Admiral William Hotham's Mediterranean Fleet chasing the French fleet and capturing the Ça-Ira and the Censeur, with the two fleets then sailing off in opposite directions. The action on 13 July was also indecisive, though the British captured a French 74-gun ship. Admiral Hotham resigned on 1 November 1795.

On 25 September 1795, Fortitude set sail for Britain with a large convoy. On 7 October 1795 the convoy sighted a large French squadron, off Cape St. Vincent, which sailed in pursuit of them. Before the French arrived, Censeur lost her fore topmast and had only a frigate's main mast left, rendering her useless. She was also lightly manned and short of powder. In the subsequent exchange the French recaptured Censeur, along with 30 ships of the convoy. The rest continued on to England.

Fortitude served as a prison ship from 1795 and as a powder hulk at Portsmouth from 1802. She was broken up there in 1820.

Scale: 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines, and longitudinal half-breadth proposed (and approved) for building Grafton (1771), and with approved alterations dated 1778 for Fortitude (1780), both 74-gun Third Rate, two-deckers. Signed by Thomas Slade [Surveyor of the Navy, 1755-1771].

Construction and commissioning
Juno was ordered on 21 October 1778 and laid down in December that year at the yards of the shipbuilder Robert Batson & Co, of Limehouse. She was launched on 30 September 1780 and completed by 14 December 1780 that year at Deptford Dockyard.[2] £8,500 1s 5d was paid to the builder, with a further £8,184 18s 1d being spent on fitting her out and having her coppered.

JUNO 1780 lines & profile Date: NMM, Progress Book, volume 5, folio 245, states that 'Andromache' was begun in June 1780 at Adams & Barnard on the River Thames. She was launched 17 Nvoember and sent to Deptford Dockyard for fitting. It is likely to be her as 'Ambuscade' was launched in 1773.

Martello towers , sometimes known simply as Martellos , are small defensive forts that were built across the British Empire during the 19th century, from the time of the French Revolutionary Wars onwards. Most were coastal forts.

They stand up to 40 feet (12 m) high (with two floors) and typically had a garrison of one officer and 15–25 men. Their round structure and thick walls of solid masonry made them resistant to cannon fire, while their height made them an ideal platform for a single heavy artillery piece, mounted on the flat roof and able to traverse, and hence fire over, a complete 360° circle. A few towers had moats or other batteries and works attached for extra defence.

The Martello towers were used during the first half of the 19th century, but became obsolete with the introduction of powerful rifled artillery. Many have survived to the present day, often preserved as historic monuments.

In the second half of the 19th century, there was another spate of tower and fort building, during the premiership of Lord Palmerston. The Palmerston Forts are also circular in design and resemble Martello towers.

Diagram of the interior of a Martello tower

On 7 February 1794 as part of the siege of Saint-Florent, two British warships, HMS Fortitude (74 guns) and HMS Juno (32 guns), unsuccessfully attacked the tower at Mortella Point the tower eventually fell to land-based forces under Sir John Moore after two days of heavy fighting. What helped the British was that the tower's two 18-pounder guns fired seaward, while only the one 6-pounder could fire land-ward.

Late in the previous year, the tower's French defenders had abandoned it after HMS Lowestoffe (32 guns) had fired two broadsides at it. The British removed the guns to arm a small vessel consequently, the French were easily able to dislodge the garrison of Corsican patriots that had replaced them.[5] Still, the British were impressed by the effectiveness of the tower when properly supplied and defended, and copied the design. But, they got the name wrong, misspelling "Mortella" as "Martello" (which means "hammer" in Italian). When the British withdrew from Corsica in 1803, with great difficulty they blew up the tower, leaving it in an unusable state.

An aerial view of a Martello tower


Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
8 February 1805 - HMS Curieux (1804 - 18), George Edmund Byron Bettesworth, captured French privateer brig Dame Ernouf (1805 - 16) some 60 miles east of Barbados.

HMS Seaforth was the French privateer Dame Ernouf , which HMS Curieux captured in 1805. The Royal Navy took her into service, but she foundered later that year.

HMS Curieux Captures Dame Ernouf, 8 February 1805, by Francis Sartorius Jr., National Maritime Museum, Greenwich

On 8 February 1805, Curieux chased the French privateer Dame Ernouf (or Madame Ernouf) for twelve hours before Curieux was able to bring her to action. After forty minutes of hard fighting the captain of Dame Ernouf, which had a crew almost twice as many crew members as Curieux, manoeuvred to attempt a boarding. Commander George Edmund Byron Bettesworth anticipated this and put his helm a-starboard, catching Dame Ernouf's jib-boom so that he could rake her. Unable to fight back, Dame Ernouff struck. The action cost Curieux five men killed and four wounded, including Bettesworth, who took a hit in his head from a musket ball. Dame Ernouf had 30 men killed and 41 wounded. She carried 16 French long 6-pounder guns and had a crew of 120. This was the same armament as Curieux carried, but in a smaller vessel. Bettesworth opined that she had fought so gallantly because her captain was also a part-owner. She was 20 days out of Guadeloupe and had taken one brig, which, however, Nimrod had recaptured.

The British took Dame Ernouf into service as HMS Seaforth, presumably naming her after Francis Mackenzie, 1st Baron Seaforth, then Governor of Barbados. The Navy commissioned her under Lieutenant George Steel (or Steele).

On 30 September a squall off Antigua caught Seaforth and she foundered quickly. There were only two survivors, out of her crew of 86 men.

HMS Curieux was a French corvette launched in September 1800 at Saint-Malo to a design by François Pestel, and carrying sixteen 6-pounder guns. She was commissioned under Capitaine de frégate Joseph-Marie-Emmanuel Cordier. The British captured her in 1804 in a cutting-out action at Martinique. In her five-year British career Curieux captured several French privateers and engaged in two notable single-ship actions, also against privateers. In the first she captured Dame Ernouf in the second, she took heavy casualties in an indecisive action with Revanche. In 1809 Curieux hit a rock all her crew were saved but they had to set fire to her to prevent her recapture.

Curieux was a prototype, and the only vessel of her class. Construction on the subsequent Curieux-class brigs started in 1803.

The French brig sloop ‘Curieux’ was fitted out at Martinique in order to attack British interests. As she was a threat to British West Indian commerce, the British Commodore Hood gave orders for her capture. Under the command of Lieutenant Robert Carthew Reynolds four boats with 60 seamen and 12 marines set out on a moonlit night from the British ship ‘Centaur’. This meant a 20-mile row to reach the ‘Curieux’ lying under the protection of the guns of Fort Edward. When Reynolds’s barge came in under the stern of the ‘Curieux’ he found that, providentially, a rope ladder hung down the side. He scaled it and cut a hole in the anti-boarding nets to enable his men to pour on board. Before she was taken the French lost nearly 40 killed and wounded. The British had nine wounded and Reynolds, who was one of them, subsequently died of his wounds. On the right side of the picture the ‘Curieux’ is shown just before her capture. Her anti-boarding netting is clearly visible. The sailors can be seen loosing her sails and cutting her cable, while the guns of Fort Edward are firing. A moon shines between her masts and in the left foreground another battery is in action. The painting is signed and dated ‘F. Sartoruis 1805’.

On 4 February 1804, HMS Centaur sent four boats and 72 men under Lieutenant Robert Carthew Reynolds to cut her out at Fort Royal harbour, Martinique. The British suffered nine wounded, two of whom, including Reynolds, later died. The French suffered ten dead and 30 wounded, many mortally. Cordier, wounded, fell into a boat and escaped. The British sent Curieux under a flag of truce to Fort Royal to hand the wounded over to their countrymen.

The Royal Navy took her into service as HMS Curieux, a brig-sloop. Reynolds commissioned her but he had been severely wounded in the action and though he lingered for a while, died in September.

Reynold's successor was George Edmund Byron Bettesworth, who had been a lieutenant on Centaur and part of the cutting out expedition. Curieux's first lieutenant was John George Boss who had been a midshipman on Centaur and also in the cutting out expedition.

In June 1804, Curieux recaptured the English brig Albion, which was carrying a cargo of coal. Then, on 15 July, she captured the French privateer schooner Elizabeth of six guns. That same day she captured the schooner Betsey, which was sailing in ballast.

In September Curieux recaptured the English brig Princess Royal, which was carrying government stores. Then in January 1805 Curieuxrecaptured an American ship, from St. Domingo, that was carrying coffee. The American had been the prize of a French privateer.

Curieux and Dame Ernouf
Then on 8 February 1805, Curieux chased the French privateer Dame Ernouf (or Madame Ernouf) for twelve hours before she able to bring her to action.[4] After forty minutes of hard fighting Dame Ernouf, which had a crew almost double in size relative to that of Curieux, maneuvered to attempt a boarding. Bettesworth anticipated this and put his helm a-starboard, catching his opponent's jib-boom so that he could rake the French vessel. Unable to fight back, the Dame Ernouff struck. The action cost Curieux five men killed and four wounded, including Bettesworth, who took a hit in his head from a musket ball. Dame Ernouf had 30 men killed and 41 wounded. She carried 16 French long 6-pounder guns and had a crew of 120. This was the same armament as Curieux carried, but in a smaller vessel. Bettesworth opined that she had fought so gallantly because her captain was also a part-owner. She was 20 days out of Guadeloupe and had taken one brig, which, however, Nimrod had recaptured. The British took Dame Ernouf into service as Seaforth, but she capsized and foundered in a gale on 30 September 1805.[6] There were only two survivors.

On 25 February Curieux, under Bettesworth, captured a Spanish launch, name unknown, which she took into Tortola.

Lieutenant Boss was on leave at the time of the action but later took over as acting commander while Bettesworth recuperated. At Cumana Gut, Boss cut out several schooners and later took a brig from St. Eustatia. Curieux and the schooner Tobago cooperated in capturing two merchantmen lying for protection under the batteries at Barcelona, on the coast of Caraccas.

On 7 July, Curieux arrived in Plymouth with dispatches from Lord Nelson. On her way, she had spotted Admiral Villeneuve's Franco-Spanish squadron on its way back to Europe from the West Indies and alerted the Admiralty. Rear-Admiral Sir Robert Calder, with 15 ships of the line, intercepted Villeneuve on 22 July, but the subsequent Battle of Cape Finisterre was indecisive, with the British capturing only two enemy ships.

James Johnstone took command of Curieux in July 1805. After refitting she sailed for the Lisbon station. On 25 November 1805 Curieux captured the Spanish privateer Brilliano, under the command of Don Joseph Advis, some 13 leagues west of Cape Selleiro. She was a lugger of five carriage guns and a crew of 35 men. Brilliano, which had been out five days from Port Carrel and two days before Cureuxcaptured her, had taken the English brig Mary, sailing from Lynn to Lisbon with a cargo of coal. Brilliano had also taken the brig Nymphe, which had been sailing from Newfoundland with a cargo of fish for Viana. The next day Curieux apparently captured San Josef el Brilliant.

On 5 February 1806, two years after her own capture, Curieux captured the 6-gun privateer Baltidore (alias Fenix) and her crew of 47 men. The capture occurred 27 leagues west of Lisbon after a chase of four hours. Baltidore had been out of Ferrol one month, during which time she had captured Good Intent, which had been sailing from Lisbon for London. About a month earlier, on 3 January, Mercury had recaptured Good Intent, which had been part of a convoy that Mercury had been escorting from Newfoundland to Portugal.

Curieux and Revanche
In March 1806 John Sheriff took over as captain of Curieux. On 3 December 1807, off Barbados, Curieux, now armed with eight 6-pounders and ten 18-pounder carronades, engaged the 25-gun privateer Revanche, commanded by Captain Vidal. Revanche, which had been the slaver British Tar, was the more heavily armed (chiefly English 9-pounders, and one long French 18-pounder upon a traversing carriage on the forecastle) and had a crew of 200 men. Revanche nearly disabled Curieux, while killing Sheriff. Lieutenant Thomas Muir wanted to board Revanche, but too few crewmen were willing to follow him. The two vessels broke off the action and Revanche escaped. Curieux, whose shrouds and back-stays were shot away, and whose two topmasts and jib-boom had been damaged, was unable to pursue.

In addition to the loss of her captain, Curieux had suffered another seven dead and 14 wounded. Revanche, according to a paragraph in the Moniteur, lost two men killed and 13 wounded. Curieux, as soon as her crew had partially repaired her, made sail and anchored the next day in Carlisle Bay, Barbados. A subsequent court martial into why Muir had not taken or destroyed the enemy vessel mildly rebuked Muir for not having hove-to repair his vessel's damage once it became obvious that Curieux was in no condition to overtake Revanche.

Further service
In February 1808 Commander Thomas Tucker assumed command, to be succeeded by Commander Andrew Hodge. Lieutenant the Honourable Henry George Moysey, possibly acting, then took command. Under his command Curieux was engaged in the blockade of Guadaloupe, where she cut out a privateer from St. Anne's Bay, Jamaica.

On 18 February 1809, Latona captured the French frigate Felicité. Curieux shared in the prize money, together with all the other vessels that been associated in the blockade of the Saintes.

On 22 September 1809, at about 3:30am, Curieux struck a rock off Petit-Terre off the Îles des Saintes. The rock was 30 yards from the beach in 11 feet of water. At first light, Hazard came to her assistance and her guns and stores were removed. Hazard then winched Curieux off a quarter of a cable but she slipped back and ran directly onto the reef. There she bilged. All her crew was saved but the British burned her to prevent her recapture. A court martial board found Lieutenant John Felton, the officer of the watch, guilty of negligence and dismissed him from the service. Moysey died the next month of yellow fever.

Post script
On 30 August 1860, the Prince of Wales was visiting Sherbrooke, where he met John Felton, who had emigrated to Canada after being dismissed the service. The Prince of Wales exercised his royal prerogative and restored Felton to his erstwhile rank in the Navy.


Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
8 February 1809 – Launch of French La Golymin , a 74-gun ship of the line of the French Navy (of the Duquesne sub-class).

The Golymin was a 74-gun ship of the line of the French Navy (of the Duquesne sub-class). Built in Lorient in 1804, she was launched in 1809. Wrecked on Mengam Rock in the roads of Brest on 23 March 1814, she is the source of the Obusier de vaisseau currently on display in the Musée national de la Marine in Paris and in Brest.

Scale model of Achille, sister ship of French ship Golymin (1809), on display at the Musée de la Marine in Paris.

She was commissioned under Captain Amand Leduc on 1 January 1812, taking part in Allemand's escape from Lorient in March.

On 23 March 1814, Golymin was despatched from Brest to assist two frigates inbound for the harbour, but a gust of wind pushed her on Mengam Rock, where she was wrecked and sank. The crew managed to abandon ship in good order and was ferried ashore by boats without loss of life.[4]Leduc was court-martialled and found innocent of the loss of the ship on 15 July 1814.

The wreck was discovered in 1977 by Michèle and Jean-Marie Retornaz, and explored by the DRASSM in 1980

On display at the Musée national de la Marine in Brest in Paris


Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
8 February 1813 - Boats of HMS Belvidera (36), Cptn. Richard Byron, HMS Maidstone, HMS Junon (38), Cptn. James Sanders, and HMS Statira (38), Cptn. Hassard Stackpoole, took American letter of marque Lottery (6)

HMS Canso was the American letter of marque schooner Lottery, launched in 1811, which a British squadron captured in 1813. The Royal Navy took Lottery into service as HMS Canso and she served during the War of 1812 and briefly thereafter. The navy sold her in 1816.

Career and capture
Lottery was copper-bottomed and fastened. She was pierced for 16 cannons, though she was armed with only six 12-pounder carronades at the time of her capture.

She sailed under a letter of marque dated 24 July 1812, was armed with six 9-pounder carronades, and had a crew of 30 men under the command of her captain John Southcomb. On her way to Pernambuco she captured one prize, the brig Preston, which however contained so little of value that Southcomb gave her up. Preston, of 10 guns and 13 men, was under the command of Captain Ditchburn. Preston had been on her way to Trinidad when Lottery captured her.

Lottery reached Pernambuco on 7 October. On her way back to Baltimore, Lottery captured the schooner Dolphin, under the command of Samuel Green, which had been sailing from New Brunswick to Jamaica. Lottery also released Dolphin.

On his return, Southcomb remained in Baltimore until 6 February. He exchanged Lottery's armament for six 12-pounder carronades, and assembled a crew of 28 men.

On 8 February 1813, nine boats and 200 men of a British naval squadron comprising Belvidera, Statira, Maidstone, and Junon captured Lottery in Lynnhaven Bay on the Chesapeake. Her crew put up a strong defense with the result that the British cutting out party suffered six men wounded, half severely or dangerously, one of whom died later the Americans suffered 19 men wounded, including Southcomb, before they struck. Southcomb died of his wounds and his body was taken ashore. Lottery had been carrying a cargo of coffee, sugar and lumber from Baltimore to Bordeaux. The British had earlier captured the schooner Rebecca, and they sent her into Norfolk as a cartel with the American wounded.

British service
A week after her capture, Lottery convoyed several prizes to Bermuda. There the Royal Navy took her into service as HMS Canso under the command of Lieutenant Wentworth P. Croke, who assumed command on 28 February. (He would remain her commander until she was sold.) On 12 May Canso and Pictou arrived in Halifax with the mail from Bermuda and five vessels that they were convoying.

On 11 September Canso captured the ship Massachusetts. Then on 13 November Canso was among several vessels that grounded in a hurricane at Halifax. Most, including Canso, suffered no material injury and were quickly got off.

On 11 May 1814, Canso recaptured the brig Traveller, of Leith. Traveller, Bishop, master, had been sailing from North Bergen to Gibraltar when the American privateer Surprise had captured her.

In the second half of the year Canso was part of a squadron that operated in the Chesapeake. There, between 17 and 19 July vessels of the squadron captured the schooners Buzi and Margaret, with cargoes of flour, tobacco, tar, and clothing. A first-class share of the prize money was worth £13 1s 9¼d a sixth-class share, that of an ordinary seaman, was worth 2s 8d. On 23 July they captured the schooner Unity, including 176 hogsheads of tobacco.

On 4 September the brig Charlotte arrived at Halifax. She had been sailing from Antigua to Greenock or Port Glasgow when the US privateer Mammoth captured her. Canso recaptured Charlotte, but the US privateer Grand Turk recaptured her for the Americans. Then Wasp re-captured Charlotte for the last time and sent her in to Halifax.

Between 29 November and 19 December 1814, captured the schooner Mary and the transports Lloyd and Abeona.

The squadron, under the command of Admiral George Cockburn, then sailed south to St. Marys, Georgia, where they attacked Fort Peter, a small fort protecting the town. Point Peter is located at the mouth of Point Peter Creek and the St. Marys River. The battle of Fort Peter occurred in January 1815, after the signing of the Treaty of Ghent, which would end the War of 1812, but before the treaty's ratification. The attack on Fort Peter occurred at the same time as the siege of Fort St. Philip in Louisiana and was part of the British occupation of St. Marys and Cumberland Island.

At Fort Peter on 13 January the British captured two American gunboats and 12 merchantmen, including the East Indiaman Countess of Harcourt, which an American privateer had captured on her way from India to London. Prize money for the Countess of Harcourt, the bark Maria Theresa, goods from the ship Carl Gustaff, and the schooner Cooler, was paid in April 1824.

On 31 January the squadron captured St. Simons, Georgia, and the schooner Reserve. Off Amelia Island on 10 and 12 February the squadron captured the ships Maria Francisca and Governor Kindeland. Lastly, two days later they captured the brig Fortuna, Jansen, master, also off Amelia Island.

Post-war and fate
In July 1815, Canso seized four vessels at Bermuda: the brig Roland (7 July), the schooner Farmer's Delight ( 17 July), and schooners Stralsund and Pheasant (27 July). Proceeds were received from the Custom House, suggesting that smuggling was involved.

The Navy offered Canso for sale on 18 April 1816 at Deptford. The Navy sold Canso on 30 May 1816.


Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
8 February 1904 - The Battle of Port Arthur
A surprise torpedo attack by the Japanese at Port Arthur, China starts the Russo-Japanese War.

The Battle of Port Arthur (Japanese: 旅順口海戦 Hepburn: Ryojunkō Kaisen) of Monday 8 February – Tuesday 9 February 1904 marked the commencement of the Russo-Japanese War. It began with a surprise night attack by a squadron of Japanese destroyers on the Russian fleet anchored at Port Arthur, Manchuria, and continued with an engagement of major surface combatants the following morning further skirmishing off Port Arthur would continue until May 1904. The battle ended inconclusively, though the war resulted in a decisive Japanese victory.

Japanese print displaying the destruction of a Russian ship

The opening stage of the Russo-Japanese War began with pre-emptive strikes by the Imperial Japanese Navy against the Russian Pacific Fleet based at Port Arthur and at Chemulpo. Admiral Tōgō's initial plan was to swoop down upon Port Arthur with the 1st Division of the Combined Fleet, consisting of the six pre-dreadnought battleships Hatsuse, Shikishima, Asahi, Fuji, and Yashima, led by the flagship Mikasa, and the 2nd Division, consisting of the armored cruisers Iwate, Azuma, Izumo, Yakumo, and Tokiwa. These capital ships and cruisers were accompanied by some 15 destroyers and around 20 smaller torpedo boats. In reserve were the cruisers Kasagi, Chitose, Takasago, and Yoshino. With this large, well-trained and well-armed force, and surprise on his side, Admiral Tōgō hoped to deliver a crushing blow to the Russian fleet soon after the severance of diplomatic relations between the Japanese and Russian governments.

On the Russian side, Admiral Stark had the pre-dreadnought battleships Petropavlovsk, Sevastopol, Peresvet, Pobeda, Poltava, Tsesarevich, and Retvizan, supported by the armored cruiser Bayan and the protected cruisers Pallada, Diana, Askold, Novik, and Boyarin, all based within the protection of the fortified naval base of Port Arthur. However, the defenses of Port Arthur were not as strong as they could have been, as few of the shore artillery batteries were operational, funds for improving the defenses had been diverted to nearby Dalny, and most of the officer corps was celebrating at a party being hosted by Admiral Stark on the night of 9 February 1904.

As Admiral Tōgō had received false information from local spies in and around Port Arthur that the garrisons of the forts guarding the port were on full alert, he was unwilling to risk his precious capital ships to the Russian shore artillery and therefore held back his main battle fleet. Instead, the destroyer force was split into two attack squadrons, one squadron with the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd flotillas to attack Port Arthur, and the other squadron, with the 4th and 5th flotillas, to attack the Russian base at Dalny.

Night attack of 8–9 February 1904

Illustration of the destruction of Russian destroyers by Japanese destroyers at Port Arthur

At about 22:30 on Monday 8 February 1904, the Port Arthur attack squadron of 10 destroyers encountered patrolling Russian destroyers. The Russians were under orders not to initiate combat, and turned to report the contact to headquarters. However, as a result of the encounter, two Japanese destroyers collided and fell behind and the remainder became scattered. At circa 00:28 on 9 February, the first four Japanese destroyers approached the port of Port Arthur without being observed, and launched a torpedo attack against the Pallada (which was hit amidship, caught fire, and keeled over) and the Retvizan (which was holed in her bow). The other Japanese destroyers were less successful many of the torpedoes became caught in the extended torpedo nets which effectively prevented most of the torpedoes from striking the vitals of the Russian battleships. Other destroyers had arrived too late to benefit from surprise, and made their attacks individually rather than in a group. However, they were able to disable the most powerful ship of the Russian fleet, the battleship Tsesarevich. The Japanese destroyer Oboro made the last attack, around 02:00, by which time the Russians were fully awake, and their searchlights and gunfire made accurate and close range torpedo attacks impossible.

Despite ideal conditions for a surprise attack, the results were relatively poor. Of the sixteen torpedoes fired, all but three either missed or failed to explode. But luck was against the Russians insofar as two of the three torpedoes hit their best battleships: the Retvizan and the Tsesarevich were put out of action for weeks, as was the protected cruiser Pallada.

Surface engagement of 9 February 1904

A Japanese torpedo boat approaches a Russian torpedo boat. A Japanese sailor attacks with a saber the commander of the enemy ship and then throws him to the sea in a furious impetus (Angelo Agostini, O Malho, 1904).

Following the night attack, Admiral Tōgō sent his subordinate, Vice Admiral Dewa Shigetō, with four cruisers on a reconnaissance mission at 08:00 to look into the Port Arthur anchorage and to assess the damage. By 09:00 Admiral Dewa was close enough to make out the Russian fleet through the morning mist. He observed 12 battleships and cruisers, three or four of which seemed to be badly listing or to be aground. The smaller vessels outside the harbor entrance were in apparent disarray. Dewa approached to about 7,500 yards (6,900 m) of the harbor, but as no notice was taken of the Japanese ships, he was convinced that the night attack had successfully paralyzed the Russian fleet, and sped off to report to Admiral Tōgō.

Unaware that the Russian fleet was getting ready for battle, Dewa urged Admiral Tōgō that the moment was extremely advantageous for the main fleet to quickly attack. Although Tōgō would have preferred luring the Russian fleet away from the protection of the shore batteries, Dewa's mistakenly optimistic conclusions meant that the risk was justified. Admiral Tōgō ordered the First Division to attack the harbor, with the Third Division in reserve in the rear.

Upon approaching Port Arthur the Japanese came upon the Russian cruiser Boyarin, which was on patrol. Boyarin fired on the Mikasa at extreme range, then turned and fled. At around 12:00, at a range of about 5 miles, combat commenced between the Japanese and Russian fleets. The Japanese concentrated the fire of their 12" guns on the shore batteries while using their 8" and 6" against the Russian ships. Shooting was poor on both sides, but the Japanese severely damaged the Novik, Petropavlovsk, Poltava, Diana and Askold. However, it soon became evident that Admiral Dewa had made a critical error the Russians had recovered from the initial destroyer attack, and their battleships had steam up. In the first five minutes of the battle Mikasa was hit by a ricocheting shell, which burst over her, wounding the chief engineer, the flag lieutenant, and five other officers and men, wrecking the aft bridge.

At 12:20, Admiral Tōgō decided to reverse course and escape the trap. It was a highly risky maneuver that exposed the fleet to the full brunt of the Russian shore batteries. Despite the heavy firing, the Japanese battleships completed the maneuver and rapidly withdrew out of range. The Shikishima, Mikasa, Fuji, and Hatsuse all took damage, receiving 7 hits amongst them. Several hits were also made on Admiral Kamimura Hikonojō's cruisers as they reached the turning point. The Russians in return had received about 5 hits, distributed amongst the battleships Petropavlovsk, Pobeda, Poltava, and the Sevastopol. During this same time, the cruiser Novik had closed to within 3,300 yards (3,000 m) of the Japanese cruisers and launched a torpedo salvo. All missed although the Novik had received a severe shell hit below the waterline.

Although the naval Battle of Port Arthur had resulted in no major warship losses, the IJN had been driven from the battlefield by the combined fire of the Russian battleships and shore batteries, thus attributing to them a minor victory. The Russians took 150 casualties to around 90 for the Japanese. Although no ship was sunk on either side, several took damage. However, the Japanese had ship repair and drydock facilities in Sasebo with which to make repairs, whereas the Russian fleet had only very limited repair capability at Port Arthur.

It was obvious that Admiral Dewa had failed to press his reconnaissance closely enough, and that once the true situation was apparent, Admiral Tōgō's objection to engage the Russians under their shore batteries was justified.

The formal declaration of war between Japan and Russia was issued on 10 February 1904, a day after the battle. The attack, conducted against a largely unassuming and unprepared neutral power in peacetime, has been widely compared to the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor.

Subsequent naval actions at Port Arthur, February–December 1904
On Thursday 11 February 1904, the Russian minelayer Yenisei started to mine the entrance to Port Arthur. One of the mines washed up against the ship's rudder, exploded and caused the ship to sink, with loss of 120 of the ship's complement of 200. Yenisei also sank with the only map indicating the position of the mines. The Boyarin, sent to investigate the accident, also struck a mine and was abandoned, although staying afloat. She sank two days later after hitting a second mine.

Admiral Togo set sail from Sasebo again on Sunday 14 February 1904, with all ships except for Fuji. On the morning of Wednesday 24 February 1904, an attempt was made to scuttle five old transport vessels to block the entry to Port Arthur, sealing the Russian fleet inside. The plan was foiled by Retvizan, which was still grounded outside the harbor. In the poor light, the Russians mistook the old transports for battleships, and an exultant Viceroy Yevgeni Alekseyev telegraphed the Tsar of his great naval victory. After daylight revealed the truth, a second telegram needed to be sent.

On Tuesday 8 March 1904, Russian Admiral Stepan Makarov arrived in Port Arthur to assume command from the unfortunate Admiral Stark, thus raising Russian morale. He raised his flag on the newly repaired Askold. On the morning of Thursday 10 March 1904, the Russian fleet took to the offensive, and attacked the blockading Japanese squadron, but to little effect. In the evening of 10 March 1904, the Japanese attempted a ruse by sending four destroyers close to the harbor. The Russians took the bait, and sent out six destroyers in pursuit whereupon the Japanese mined the entrance to the harbor and moved into position to block the destroyers' return. Two of the Russian destroyers were sunk, despite efforts by Admiral Makarov to come to their rescue.

On Tuesday 22 March 1904, Fuji and Yashima were attacked by the Russian fleet under Admiral Makarov, and Fuji was forced to withdraw to Sasebo for repairs. Under Makarov, the Russian fleet was growing more confident and better trained. In response, on Sunday 27 March 1904, Tōgō again attempted to block Port Arthur, this time using four more old transports filled with stones and concrete. The attack again failed as the transports were sunk too far away from the entrance to the harbor.

On 13 April 1904, Makarov (who had now transferred his flag to Petropavlovsk) left port to go to the assistance of a destroyer squadron he had sent on reconnaissance north to Dalny. He was accompanied by the Russian cruisers Askold, Diana, and Novik, along with the battleships Poltava, Sevastopol, Pobeda, and Peresvet. The Japanese fleet was waiting, and Makarov withdrew towards the protection of the shore batteries at Port Arthur. However, the area had been recently mined by the Japanese. At 09:43, Petropavlovsk struck three mines, exploded and sank within two minutes. The disaster killed 635 officers and men, along with Admiral Makarov. At 10:15, Pobeda was also crippled by a mine. The following day, Admiral Togo ordered all flags to be flown at half mast, and that a day’s mourning be observed for his fallen adversary. Makarov was officially replaced by Admiral Nikolai Skrydlov on 1 April 1904 however, Skrydlov was unable to reach his command due to the Japanese blockade, and remained at Vladivostok overseeing command of the Vladivostok cruiser squadron until recalled to St Petersburg on 20 December.

On 3 May 1904, Admiral Togo made his third and final attempt at blocking the entrance to Port Arthur, this time with eight old transports. This attempt also failed, but Togo proclaimed it to be a success, thus clearing the way for the Japanese Second Army to land in Manchuria. Although Port Arthur was as good as blocked, due to the lack of initiative by Makarov's successors, Japanese naval losses began to mount, largely due to Russian mines. On 15 May, two Japanese battleships, the 12,320-ton Yashima and the 15,300-ton Hatsuse, sank in a Russian minefield off Port Arthur after they both struck at least two mines each, eliminating one-third of Japan's battleship force, the worst day for the Japanese Navy during the war.

Further naval operations from Port Arthur resulted in two break-out attempts by the Russians. The first was on 23 June 1904, and the second on 10 August, the latter of which resulted in the Battle of the Yellow Sea, which was tactically inconclusive. Afterwards, the Russian fleet did not make any more attempts to break out from their port, while the Japanese fleet dominated the waters for the duration of the war. But mines laid by Russian minelayers were a continuing problem for the IJN and resulted in more losses. On 18 September 1904, the 2,150-ton gunboat Heien struck a Russian mine west of Port Arthur and sank. The same fate befell the 2,440-ton cruiser Saien on 30 November in the same minefield, and on 13 December, the 4,160-ton cruiser Takasago sank in another Russian minefield a few miles south of Port Arthur while giving naval gunfire support to the Japanese armies now besieging the port

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