Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The U.S. Navy and the Personal Navigator

Marching "extra duty" at the U.S. Naval Academy, 1954.

The Navy is important to me.  I spent 34 years in the United States Navy, and looking back, boy, that time went fast!
I never would have dreamed of all the things I got to do in that time.  Couldn't have planned it.  It just unfolded, a little bit at a time.  

                 There is no way that I could imagine that one day I would be driving a nuclear submarine through the Straits of Gibraltar at 300 feet of depth (in 1963-65), or watching people through our periscope, celebrating Christmas on the island of Pantelleria, off Sicily...
Or hunting for wild boar in the forest near the Caspian Sea in Iran  with Iranian Army soldiers as our guides...
Or commanding a destroyer, traveling in formation with three others, at top speed, our guns firing at targets in North Viet Nam, in pitch-black dark with no radar, and enemy shells splashing all around us...
Or being apprehended by KGB agents outside a Soviet Bomber Factory in Irkutsk, Siberia….and again on the streets of Leningrad (now St. Petersburg)...
Or talking Russian with the head of the whole Red Fleet at a reception in Moscow, or with his successor at another party in our home in Moscow….
Or calling upon the Governor of Nagasaki Prefecture in my stiff, formal white uniform, with medals and sword ...
Or sitting across the table aboard the Carrier USS Carl Vinson, with a member of the Japanese Diet, Minoru Genda. Genda, as a young Lieutenant Commander in the Imperial Japanese Navy, had been the leading planner for the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor , 42 years earlier, in 1941.
Or sitting in a sauna in the Watergate Hotel in Washington, strip naked, with a Soviet admiral and captain, also naked, taking the heat.

Let me share with you a few books and papers that tell the story of our wonderful United States Navy (and other navies, as well) at various episodes in our Nation's history....

USS Monadnock, ca. 1901

Gun and Torpedo Drills for the United States Navy, prepared under the direction of the Bureau of Navigation, Navy Department by Lieutenant Edward W. Eberle, U.S.N. 1901 Annapolis, MD: U.S. Naval Institute. Author Eberle (1864-1929) graduated from the Naval Academy in 1885, and wrote this book, the first of its kind, after service as turret officer aboard USS Oregon  in the Spanish-American War. Later, in 1923, he became Chief of Naval Operations. Drill of 3, 4, 5 and 6-inch rapid-fire guns for five or six men per gun: Captain, Plugman, Loader, 2 or 3 Shellmen. Drills for 5, 6, 7 and 8-inch quick-fire guns with seven or eight men per gun.  Includes detailed instructions and commands for loading, unloading. Drill of a pair of 8-inch B.L.R. mounted in turret, with an ammunition-lift for each gun, 10 men, five for each gun. Drill for pair of 10, 12 or 13-inch B.L.R. mounted in turret. Secondary gun drills, including 1-pdr. Maxim Automatic Gun. Detailed notes for Turret Mounts. Smith and Wesson Navy Revolver. Krag-Jorgensen Rifle (.30 inch). Torpedo Drills for Whitehead Torpedo. Details on Whitehead Torpedo.  Tables for Schedule of Exercises, Regulations for Target Practice, tables for Subcaliber Practice. For Torpedo firing, Range Table. . 222 pp. 10 x 14.6 cm. Leather cover with gilt lettering and Naval Institute seal, with cover flap. Text on high-quality fine paper. Inside front hinge cracked. This copy issued to Commanding Officer USS Monadnock. Leather flap has 6 cm of biopredation along fold.  Fair. (7976) $180.00. Naval/History

Hudson-Fulton Celebration, Official Program, September 25 to October 9, 1909 New York, NY: Hudson-Fulton Celebration Commission. Celebration commemorates Discovery of Hudson River by Henry Hudson, 1609 and Inauguration of Steam Navigation by Robert Fulton, 1807. List of officers and Chairmen of Committees. Events included naval parades, musical festivals, military parade, children's festivals, illuminations, lectures, carnivals, historical parades and religious observances. Pictures of floats in historical pageant. United States ships at event included USS Idaho, USS Mississippi, USS Minnesota, USS Georgia, USS Wisconsin, USS Ohio, USS Rhode Island, USS Connecticut, all part of Great White Fleet; USNLS Utrecht of Netherlands; FNS Justice of France; HMS Duke of Edinburgh and HMS Drake, UK; Viktoria Luise of Germany.  Also flying machines by Wright and Curtiss took part.  32 pp. 23 x 31 cm. Paper publication, front and back covers loose, poor. (7379) $33.00. Nautical
German Navy in an Albanian Swamp, 1913

In Fjord und Mittelmeer Fahrten eines Kleinen Kreuzers [In German] von Richard v. Stosch (author of "Vom Seekadetten zum Seeoffizier") 1914 Berlin, Germany: Ernst Siegfried Mittler und Sohn, Königliche hofbuchhandlung, Hochstraße 68-71.  Author, Richard von Stosch, Kapitänleutnant, writes his "Vorwort" from Konstantinopel (now Istanbul) in September 1913. Story of cruise of  German cruiser Breslau in the Baltic and North Sea, including Norwegian Fjords, then into the  Mediterranean Sea. Photos of sailors and ship at Swinemünde (now in Poland), then in Valetta, Malta and Port Said, photos of Beirut and Baalbek, Bucht von Smyrna, photo of Der Scheich der tanzenden Derwische, (Sheikh of the Whirling Dervishes); expedition to Skutari, Albania and photo of Serbische Maschinengewehre and ruins at Skutari, photo of earnest looking sailors and officers in very tall grass (In den Sümpfen der Bojana) in wilderness between Montenegro and Albania.  This account, all in German, may give some clues to the hazy history of combat in this area at the end of the Ottoman Empire, when Austro-Hungarians and Germans supposedly fought the Serbs at Skutari. 162 pp. 11.8 x 19.6 cm. Decorated paper on board, worn, paper on spine is gone. Inscription on dedication page is dated "Kiel, 15 Februar 1914." Good. (1832) $60.00. Naval/History
USS Nevada (BB36) undergoing repairs, just weeks after attack at Pearl Harbor.

Jane's Fighting Ships, 1942 [Issued June 1943] Founded in 1897 by Fred T. Jane, 46th Year of Issue 1943McMurtrie, Francis E., A.I.N.A., Editor. New York, NY: The MacMillan Co.  Forward to this book notes the tremendous difficulty of preparing this edition, with secrecy on part of combatants and neutrals, efforts to obscure or propagandize, and ships being sunk daily. Frontispiece photo of HMS Exeter, Royal Navy cruiser that bore the brunt of action with the German "pocket battleship" Admiral Graf Spee at the Battle of the Plate on December 13, 1939. Text notes that, while the Graf Spee was scuttled, Exeter was completely refitted and returned to combat. She was sunk by Japanese air attack at the Battle of the Java Sea in 1942. This fascinating real-timre record of naval action in World War II shows the ships that survived the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (Dec. 7th, 1941), even noting changes to them as result of repairs after the attack. Also with 62 pages of advertising for everything you need to outfit a warship. 582 pp. + 62 pp. adv. 31 x 20 cm. Light blue cloth on board with gilt lettering. Edges worn, tiny white paint spots on cover, good. (6985) $140.00.  Naval/World War II

Coaster's and Fisherman's Guide, and Master's and Mate's Manual: Laws of the Sea. Including the Passenger Laws of 1819, '47, '48 and '49 by Butts, Isaac Ridler 1849 Boston, MA: I.R. Butts, No. 2 School Street. Butts (1795-1882) published a whole mass of guide books  for Sailors, Seamen and Fishermen. This Seaman's Assistant provides guidance for Rights of Merchant Seamen, including hiring, when they may desert, right to salvage, wages (including tables) and punishment. "...a master might be excused for knocking a seaman down, under the influence of sudden passion, from provocation by language of gross insolence.....(further) kicking and beating the fallen seaman ...would not be justified."  "The master is not justified in stripping a seaman naked, and inflicting  a severe punishment with a cat; at least not for ordinary violation of the ship's discipline." Also included are Coaster's Guide, Fisherman's Guide, including Bounty in Cod Fisheries, Mackerel Fishery, Pickled Fish; Shipmaster's Manual, Passenger Vessels (Act of 1847); In Appendix is Navy Ration for victualling, which stipulates 4 lbs. of beef per week per man, 3 lbs. pork, 1 lb. flour, 1/2 lb. raisins or dried fruit, and 1 3/4 pints of spirits.  Also guidance for Common Carriers, Marine Insurance and Book-keeping.. 120 pp. 11 x 18 cm. Paper on board with cloth tape spine, parts of cloth tape on spine missing, inside back hinge cracked, pencil inscriptions on back pastedown and back endpaper. Fair. (4742) $290.00. Nautical

U.S. Navy Regulations, 1865; Regulations for the Government of the United States Navy. [Book belonged to Ens. James H. Bunting, recognized for his action in helping to destroy a Confederate salt work in 1864.] 1865 Washington, DC: Government Printing Office.  Naval Regulations book belonged to  "James. H. Bunting, U.S. Frigate Potomac", who is recognized in history of Civil War for his work in leading a naval party from USS Ethan Allen to destroy a South Carolina salt work. Navy Regulations include Regulation Circular No. 1 signed by Gideon Welles, Civil War Secretary of the Navy, August 1, 1865; Regulation Circular No. 4, by Welles, dated Aug. 22, 1866, detailing books to be carried aboard a cruising vessel by midshipmen. 345 pp. 12.5 x 19 cm. Blue cloth on board, quite worn, front and back outer spine cracked, 1 cm sword, etc. puncture in book penetrates first 120 pages. Poor. (3761) $150.00. Naval/Civil War/History
[Boat crews from U.S.S. Ethan Allan, Acting Master Isaac A. Pennell, landed at Cane Patch, near Murrell's Inlet, South Carolina, and destroyed a salt work which Pennell, who led the expedi-tion himself, described as "much more extensive than I expected After mixing most of the 2,000 bushels of salt into the sand of the beach, the Union sailors fired the four salt works as well as some 30 buildings in the surrounding area. The next day, off Wither's Swash, Pennell sent Acting Master William H. Winslow and Acting Ensign James H. Bunting ashore with two boat crews to destroy a smaller salt work.]

U.S. Naval Academy Lucky Bag for 1947: The Brigade of Midshipmen Presents the 1947 Lucky Bag  Annapolis, MD: United States Naval Academy. This large, handsome book features a close-up view of an anchor being hoisted, with water dripping off it, with silhouette of a cruiser in the distance. Cover is blue and shades of brown to yellow. This class spent only three years at the Academy, graduating in 1946,  joining the Fleet in the aftermath of World War II. This book features photo of Harry S Truman as Commander in Chief, and James V. Forrestal as Secretary of the Navy. President Jimmy Carter was member of this class, as was Vietnam Hero and Prisoner of War Vice Admiral James Stockdale. Admiral Bill Crowe, Capt. Carlos Dew, Vice Admiral Jim Watkins, Jr., Admiral Stansfield Turner, Admiral Worth Bagley, Vice Admiral Jim Doyle, Lou Larcombe, Rear Admiral Donald Boone Whitmire, Jeremiah Denton, Jr., Medal of Honor winner Thomas Hudner, Jr. Endpapers feature words and music of  "Anchor's Aweigh" with pictures of anchor being hoisted. 539 pp. 28 x 36 cm. Cloth on board with design in blue and shades of brown to yellow; pp. 283-284 have closed tear, 4 cm. Very good. (8071) $80.00. Navy/World War II

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