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Author Topic: This Day In 'Boating' History  (Read 159988 times)

Capt Podge

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #150 on: February 22, 2013, 12:22:25 AM »

Thursday, 22nd February 1940   Trawlers from the Tyne continued to use the Dogger Bank fishing ground (90 miles off the east coast) during the war, just as they had done in peacetime. This did not go unnoticed by the German Naval Group West who planned an operation against the trawlers with the threefold aims of eroding the morale of the trawlermen, possibly capturing some valuable auxiliaries and forcing the Royal Navy to supply escorts for the trawlers.
 
The German destroyers 'Eckholdt' as leader, joined by 'Beitzen', 'Riedel', 'Schultz', 'Maass' and 'Koellner', each ship carrying a prize crew, sailed from the Schillig Roads about midday on Thursday, 22nd February 1940. They made their way through swept channel '1' (a channel 6 miles wide, providing a safe and secret passage for German warships needing to reach the North Sea) entering the minefield at 19.00, in line ahead 200 metres apart, steering 300? at 26 knots.
 
At 19.13, a twin-engined aircraft was sighted flying 60 metres above the destroyers as if trying to identify them. At 19.21 the aircraft appeared again, and on its second run, the 'Beitzen' and 'Koellner' opened fire, the plane replied and sheered off. It was not seen again until 19.43 when the 'Maass' reported it and opened fire, the aircraft dropped 2 bombs 1 of which hit the 'Maass' between the bridge and forward funnel. The remaining destroyers turned back towards the 'Maass' but were ordered to stand off by the flotilla leader. Suddenly the "Maass's" guns opened up again as 2 more bombs were released, when the smoke had cleared, the bows and stern of the ship were visible, pointing vertically upwards, the lower parts resting on the shallow sea-bed.
 
A period of great confusion reigned as the 'Riedel' hearing an explosion from the direction of the 'Schultz', dropped depth charges but was going so slowly that she badly damaged her own gyro-compass, rudder motor and all of her command elements. The 'Koellner' seeing the 'Riedel' dropping depth charges, ordered her picket boat to cast off (it was tied to the ships propeller guard), under the impression that it had done so, the 'Riedel' picked up speed, dragged her picket boat under and drowned the occupants, then, seeing what was thought to be the conning tower of a submarine, went to ram it only to discover that it was the bows of the 'Maass' sticking out of the sea. The flotilla leader ordered the remains of his force back to Wilhelmshaven. In all 578 German seamen were lost.
 
A disaster of such proportions demanded an explanation, the truth gradually dawning on the Germans - they had bombed and sunk their own ships. Hitler was eventually made aware of the situation, and he ordered a full inquiry. The conclusions reached were: A Heinkel He 111 from 4/KG26 had made 2 bombing runs - on the first, sinking the 'Maass' and on the second, sinking the 'Schultz'. The aircraft was part of a force sent out to attack shipping in the North Sea, an operation about which the Luftwaffe informed the Kriegsmarine, but about which the latter did not see fit to warn its own destroyers. Furthermore: the Kriegsmarine did not notify the Luftwaffe that its destroyers were at sea. So ended the action that was intended to harass our trawlers.
 
Regards,
 
Ray.
 
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raflaunches

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #151 on: February 22, 2013, 09:14:13 AM »

February 22nd 1941


After bombarding Benghazi, the ex WW1 monitor HMS Terror is attacked by a squadron of Junkers Ju88s. She is badly damaged by near misses and is taken under tow back to Alexandria, however after two days she is abandoned by her crew after many of her watertight bulkheads give way. She sinks just off Derna in Libya, leaving the remainder of her squadron, HMS Gnat, Ladybird, and Aphis to carry on bombardment duties along the Northa African coast. Terror was the primary unit of the Inshore squadron but with her loss the little Insect class gunboats now become the primary targets, with Ladybird being sunk in Tobruk a few months later and Gnat torpedoed by a Uboat off Bardia, Libya, in October 1941.

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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History - February 22nd
« Reply #152 on: February 22, 2013, 05:19:30 PM »

February 22nd...

1744: The naval 'Battle of Toulon' or 'Battle of Cape Sicié' took place on in the Mediterranean off the coast of Toulon, France. A combined Franco-Spanish fleet fought off Britain's Mediterranean fleet. The French fleet, not officially at war with Great Britain, only joined the fighting late, when it was clear that the greatly outnumbered Spanish fleet had gained the advantage over its foe. With the French intervention, the British fleet was forced to withdraw.

1797: The 'Battle of Fishguard' (Wales) begins with a military invasion by Revolutionary France. Taking place between the 22nd and 24th February, as part of the War of the First Coalition. The brief campaign results in the an unconditional surrender by the invasion force and the British capture of 1,800 prisoners (and later), a Frigate and a Lugger. The incident was the most recent effort by a foreign force that was able to land on Britain and thus, is often referred to as the "Last invasion of Britain".

1797: Some three leagues from Marbello on the Spanish coast, HMS 'Espoir' engages a Spanish flotilla and captures her last prize, the 14-gun xebec 'Nostra Senora de Africa'. The other two ships (another xebec and a Brig) escaped.

1903: Intending to set up winter quarters in the Weddell Sea quadrant, Scottish naturalist, polar scientist and oceanographer, William Speirs Bruce, heading the Scottish National Antarctic Expedition aboard the research ship 'Scotia', manage to reach 70°25′S on this day in 1903. Unable to proceed further because of heavy ice, they retreat to Laurie Island in the South Orkneys, and winter there, establishing a meteorological station as part of a full programme of scientific work.


SNAE ship 'Scotia', in the ice at Laurie Island, South Orkneys, 1903–04.

1909: The United States Navy fleet of 16 'new' battleships along with various escorts, sails in to Hampton Roads, Virginia, on completion of it's around-the-world tour which began on 16th December 1907, by order of U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt. Nicknamed "The Great White Fleet" as their hulls were painted white with gold detailing, the armada's cicumnavigation was meant to demonstrate America's military might and growth as a world power.


Painted Scene of the Great White Fleet (from a Silk Banner)

1943: USS 'Iowa' (BB-61) is commissioned. She put to sea for a shakedown in the Chesapeake Bay and along the Atlantic coast on 24th February. 'Iowa' was the last lead ship in the last class of U.S. battleships, and the only ship of her class to serve in the Atlantic Ocean during World War II.


USS 'Iowa' firepower demonstration, 15th August 1984.

1974: LTJG Barbara Ann Allen becomes first U.S. Navy designated female aviator. She later became the first Navy woman to qualify as a jet pilot.

1999: On the beach, near Coos Bay, Oregon, at the scene of the battered, burned, blown-up and broken, dry bulk freighter, the 'New Carissa', the U.S. Coast Guard and salvage officials abandon oil-pumping efforts as overnight winds and breakers push the bow-section at least 30ft to the south. Punishing winds on the 23rd February block a helicopter from hooking the 'New Carissa's' bow to the tugboat 'Sea Victory'.
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Capt Podge

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #153 on: February 23, 2013, 12:14:18 AM »

Friday, 23rd February 1940   The minesweeping trawler 'Benvolio' hit a mine and sank off the Humber.
 
 
Regards,
 
Ray.
 
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History - February 23rd
« Reply #154 on: February 23, 2013, 07:28:47 PM »

February 23rd..

1945: Part of an Arctic Convoy, the last allied ship sunk by the Luftwaffe during WWII, the Liberty-ship SS 'Henry Bacon', is torpedoed in the Barents Sea, although she doesn't go down without a fight...

During the winter of 1945 many Norwegian civilians fled the horrors of Nazi rule in Finnmark. An estimated 502 Norwegians were picked up from the Norwegian island Sørøya by British destroyers and brought to Murmansk, Russia, where they were transferred to merchant ships in a convoy headed for Loch Ewe, Gourock, Scotland.

Twice, the icy waters of the Arctic Sea had separated the Liberty Ship SS 'Henry Bacon' from the rest of convoy RA-64, leaving her an easy target. In the stormy weather, 23 Junkers Ju 88 and Ju 188 Nazi torpedo bombers found and attacked the lone ship. The crew did not radio for help because they did not want to risk revealing the convoy’s position, and instead fought alone in the gale force winds.

The 'Henry Bacon' was armed with eight 20 mm anti-aircraft guns, a 5 inch (127 mm) gun aft and a 3 in (76 mm) gun forward. The ship’s Naval Armed Guard gunners fought the attacking aircraft for over an hour, shooting down five planes, and damaging at least four others. They also managed to defend against several torpedoes by causing their detonation before they reached the ship until, almost inevitably, one aerial torpedo got through, striking the hold under the No 5 hatch - this was the aft magazine. The vessel began settling at once, but until she went down, her guns kept firing.

When the order to abandon ship was given one of the four lifeboats was smashed in lowering and another had been damaged by weather and capsized. Two were successfully launched, one carrying the 19 refugees and a few crewmen and the other, 15 crewmen and seven gunners. All these and other survivors who had jumped overboard or had taken to rafts were later picked up by British naval craft - in 30 foot waves, the British destroyer HMS Opportune came to the rescue and picked up the survivors from the lifeboat. HMS Zambesi and HMS Zelast also assisted. In all there were 64 survivors and 22 crew members were killed.

The action on board the 'Henry Bacon' almost certainly saved the rest of the convoy, as the attackers were unable to carry on further, having used up their fuel, ammunition, and taken damage.


SS 'Henry Bacon', eventually sunk during a German aerial torpedo attack on 23rd February 1945.
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #155 on: February 23, 2013, 09:12:03 PM »

February 23rd...

1633: Samuel Pepys (FRS, MP, JP) was born in Salisbury Court, Fleet Street, London, to John Pepys, a tailor, and Margaret Pepys (née Kite), daughter of a Whitechapel butcher. Pepys was the fifth in a line of eleven children, but the oldest survivor.
He would go on to become the Chief Secretary to the Admiralty, where his influence and reforms would be important in the early professionalisation of the Royal Navy, though e would become most famous (posthumously) as a diarist.
 
1802: In a terrible blizzard in three Salem East Indiamen, the 'Brutus', the 'Ulysses', and the 'Volusia',  went aground in the shallow waters off Cape Cod. The crew members of the latter two vessels were fortunate enough to be rescued by local inhabitants. The seamen on the 'Brutus' were not so lucky as nine of the 14 crew members perished.


The 'Friendship', a replica of an 18th century Salem East Indiaman.
Docked in Salem Harbour, across from the Customs House.

1814:  During the 'War of 1812', while cruising off Cape Sable, HMS 'Epervier' captures the American privateer-brig 'Alfred', of Salem. 'Alfred', which mounted 16 long 9-pounders and had a crew of between 94 to 108 men, surrendered without a fight.

1886: After several years of intensive work, Charles Martin Hall produces the first samples of man-made aluminum, assisted in the project by his older sister Julia Brainerd Hall.

1904: The United States acquires control of the Panama Canal Zone, for $10 million, plus annual payments of $250,000 (as provided in the Hay-Bunau-Varilla Treaty, signed on November 18, 1903). After the U.S. formally takes control of the French property relating to the canal, construction resumes later in 1904.


Construction of the Panama Canal in 1904.

1918: SS 'Florizel', a passenger liner and flagship of the Bowring Brothers' Red Cross Line of steamships, was one of the first ships in the world specifically designed to navigate icy waters. During its last voyage, from St. John's to Halifax and on to New York, it sunk after striking a reef at Horn Head Point, Cape Race near Cappahayden, Newfoundland, Canada, with the loss of 94 including Betty Munn, a three-year-old girl, in whose memory a statue of Peter Pan was erected at Bowring Park in St. John's.


Passenger Liner SS 'Florizel' arriving St. John's Harbour sometime between 1909 and 1918.

1942: The Imperial Japanese Navy's submarine 'I-17', under the command of Commander Nishino Kozo, surfaces and shells the oil refinery near Santa Barbara. The shelling does only minor damages to a pier and an oil well derrick, but creates "invasion" fears along the West Coast.
Speculation now exists that the attack was 'revenge' for a humiliating incident involving Nishino Kozo from before the war, when as skipper of an oil tanker, he had refueled there.

1980: The Greek tanker 'Irenes Serenade', loaded with 102,660 tonnes of Iraqi crude oil (Kirkuk Blend), en route from Syria to Trieste, explodes whilst refueling in Navarino Bay, Greece. As fire consumes the vessel, a burning oil slick two miles long by half a mile wide spread from the vessel and continued to burn, until the following morning when the tanker sank off Pylos Harbour, close to Sfakteria Island. All but two crew members were rescued. Fishing gear on the jetty was destroyed in the fire and the hillside of Sfakteria Island was scorched to a height of 30 metres. The bunkering installation on the island was also damaged as a result of the fire.
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History - 'Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima'
« Reply #156 on: February 23, 2013, 10:11:54 PM »

February 23rd...

1945: Four days after U.S. Marines landed on Iwo Jima, they managed to achieve their first goal -the isolatation and capture of Mount Suribachi. Despite taking Suribachi, the battle would continue for many days, and the island would not be declared "secure" for several weeks.
However, an event on this day would come to be regarded (especially in the United States) as one of the most significant and recognisable images of the war, and possibly the most reproduced photograph of all time.

'Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima' was taken on February 23, 1945, by Joe Rosenthal, and depicts five United States Marines and a U.S. Navy corpsman raising the flag of the United States atop Mount Suribachi.

Interestingly, the famous picture captured the second flag-raising of the day, as a U.S. flag had already been raised atop Suribachi soon after it was captured at around 10:20hrs. The original event recorded by Staff Sergeant Louis R. Lowery, a photographer with Leatherneck magazine.

However, when it was realised that the first flag was too small to be easily seen from the nearby landing beaches, a 40-man patrol of Marines climbed Surbachi again with a 96" x 54" flag (found in Tank Landing Ship LST 779). Reaching the top of Suribachi around noon, the flag was tied to an old Japanese water pipe and raised by Michael Strank, Rene Gagnon, Ira Hayes, Franklin Sousley, John Bradley, and Harlon Block.

Immortalised on film, only three of the men (Hayes, Gagnon, and Bradley) would survive the battle Iwo Jima. Strank was killed six days after the flag-raising when a shell, likely fired from an offshore American destroyer, tore his heart out; Block was killed by a mortar a few hours after Strank; Sousley was shot and killed by a sniper on March 21, a few days before the island was declared secure.


"Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima", by Joe Rosenthal, (October 9th 1911 - August 20th 2006).
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Capt Podge

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #157 on: February 24, 2013, 12:46:50 AM »

Saturday, 24th February 1940   'SS Jevington Court' (4,544t) steamer, Tyne to London with a cargo of coal, was sunk by a mine off Cromer.
'SS Clan Morrison' (5,936t) steamer, Tyne to London on Admiralty service was also sunk by a mine off Cromer.
 
 Monday, 24th February 1941   'SS Linaria' (3,385t) cargo ship, Tyne to Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada was sunk by the Italian submarine 'Bianchi', between the south coast of Iceland and the west coast of Ireland. [Other sources suggest that the submarine responsible was the U Boat U-96.]
 
 Thursday, 24th February 1944   'SS Philipp M' (2,085t) cargo ship, Tyne to London with coal, was sunk by an E Boat, off Great Yarmouth.
 
 
Regards,
 
Ray.
 
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History - February 24th
« Reply #158 on: February 24, 2013, 03:22:50 PM »

February 24th...

1582: On this day in 1582, Pope Gregory XIII announces the reformation of the calendar and decrees by the papal bull Inter gravissimas, that the day after Thursday, 4th October 1582 would be not Friday, 5th October, but Friday, 15 October 1582.
The new calendar duly replaced the Julian calendar (in use since 45 BC), and has since come into universal use. Because of Gregory's involvement, the reformed Julian calendar came to be known as the Gregorian calendar.

1743: (Sir) Joseph Banks (1st Baronet, GCB, PRS) was born* at 30 Argyll Street, London to William Banks, a wealthy Lincolnshire country squire and member of the House of Commons, and his wife Sarah, daughter of William Bate.
He would become known as an English naturalist, botanist and patron of the natural sciences. He would take part in Captain James Cook's first great voyage (1768–1771), and the exploration of Botany Bay. *Birth date: 24th February 1743 (13th February 1743, O.S.)

1813: After an exchange of broadsides between the sloop of war USS 'Hornet' and the Cruiser class brig sloop HMS 'Peacock', near the mouth of the Demerara River, Guyana, the British vessel was pursued by the 'Hornet' and succumbed to raking fire. Sinking swiftly, the prize crew were denied the opportunity to save her.


U.S. sloop-of-war Hornet duels HMS Peacock.
Original painting by Patrick O'Brien

1875: During a severe storm, the SS 'Gothenburg' ran on to the Great Barrier Reef off the north coast of Queensland, Australia. During the night of 24th/25th February, whilst trying to refloat her on the rising tide, the ship was holed and subsequently wrecked. The storm made launching the lifeboats almost impossible, and as the sinking ship heeled over, many passengers were washed into the raging sea where several sharks had gathered. One survivor recalled the sea on the downwind side of the ship as "being covered with human heads bobbing up and down like corks."
There were few survivors. Some were rescued from a lifeboat after two days by the 'Leichhardt', while the occupants of two other lifeboats were later rescued from Holbourne Island. Between 98 and 112 others died, including a number of high profile civil servants and dignitaries.


SS 'Gothenburg' docked at Port Adelaide wharf (after her lengthening in 1873).

1911: (Possibly 25th February) Glenn Curtiss demonstrates his first amphibian aircraft at North Island, San Diego, CA., by taking off and alighting on both land and water. Three days later, Curtiss would become the first person to successfully arise from water with a passenger, Theodore G. Ellyson, U. S. Navy.
Subsequently, Curtiss would sell the U.S. Navy their first aircraft. An A-1 'Triad' seaplane equipped with retractable wheels - Triad standing for Land, Water, Air.
 

The first Curtiss 'Triad' - North Island, Spring 1911.

1942: On 15th December 1941, the SS 'Struma' was towed to Istanbul after suffering an engine failure whilst carrying Jewish refugees from Axis-allied Romania to British-controlled Palestine during World War II. On February 23rd, 1942, with her engine inoperable and her refugee passengers still aboard, Turkish authorities towed the ship from Istanbul harbor through the Bosphorus out to the coast of Şile in North Istanbul. Once there, the Turkish authorities abandoned the ship, where it drifted helplessly. On the morning of February 24th, it was torpedoed and sunk by the Soviet submarine 'Shch 213', killing 768 men, women and children, with only one survivor, a 19 year old man, making it the largest exclusively civilian naval disaster of the war in the Black Sea.
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #159 on: February 24, 2013, 10:29:48 PM »

February 24...

1959: After reclassification, conversion and re-commissioning at the Philadelphia Naval Yard, the U.S. Navy guided-missile cruiser, USS 'Galveston' (CLG-3), launches a RIM-8 'Talos' missile on 24th February 1959, the first time the supersonic, surface-to-air 'Talos' had been fired at sea.


The first sea-launched 'Talos' missile sends it's payload off in a trail of bright orange flame.
'Galveston' reported the shot "hot, straight and normal", 24th February 1959.
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Capt Podge

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #160 on: February 25, 2013, 12:22:06 AM »

Sunday, 25th February 1945   'SS Egholm' (1,317t) a Danish ship, was converted for the Ministry of War Transport and was on a voyage from Leith to London when she was sunk by U 2322 off St Abbs Head at 55°55'00"N - 01°55'24"W. Two crew members and three gunners were killed. She lies in 23 metres of water. She was built in 1924.
 

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Regards,
 
Ray.
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This Day In 'Boating' History - February 25th
« Reply #161 on: February 25, 2013, 05:07:56 PM »

February 25th...

1723: Sir Christopher Michael Wren FRS, died whilst taking a nap, aged 90 years, at his home in London.

Amongst his achievements, Wren had been a professor of astronomy, and a founding member of the Royal Society, along with other mathematicians, scientists and scholars.
Wren's scientific works ranged from astronomy, optics, the problem of finding longitude at sea, cosmology, mechanics, microscopy, surveying, medicine and meteorology. He observed, measured, dissected, built models and employed, invented and improved a variety of instruments.

One of the most highly acclaimed English architects in history, he was also commissioned to design the Royal Observatory at Greenwich, the Royal Hospital Chelsea for retired soldiers, and the Royal Hospital for Seamen at Greenwich (Greenwich Hospital), which later became the Royal Naval College, Greenwich.

Christopher Wren was was laid to rest on 5th March 1723, in the south-east corner of the crypt of his masterpiece, St Paul's Cathedral, beside his daughter Jane, his sister Susan Holder, and her husband William.


The Old Royal Naval College is the architectural centrepiece of Maritime Greenwich, a World Heritage Site in Greenwich, London, described by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) as being of “outstanding universal value” and reckoned to be the “finest and most dramatically sited architectural and landscape ensemble in the British Isles”



The Royal Observatory (below), overlooks the Old Royal Naval College, and can be seen in the distance in the image above.

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ardarossan

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #162 on: February 25, 2013, 08:19:52 PM »

February 25th...

1917: Six miles northwest by west of Fastnet, Cunard liner RMS 'Laconia' was struck by two torpedoes, twenty minutes apart, from German submarine U-50, as she was returning from the United States to England with 75 passengers, 217 crew, and a large consignmment of silver (1 million ounces!) along with her general cargo.
'Laconia' sank at 22:20 hrs. Six crew and six passengers were killed, some of whom were American citizens. This aspect of the incident contributing towards the U.S. declaration of war against Germany less than two months later.


R.M.S. 'Laconia' (1912)

1933: The U.S.S. 'Ranger' (CV-4) is launched at the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company, Newport News, Virginia. She was the first ship of the United States Navy to be designed and built from the keel up as an aircraft carrier.


U.S.S. 'Ranger' being launched, 25th February 1933.
   
1941: At 11:40hrs, the German battleship 'Tirpitz' was commissioned to Kapitän Friedrich Karl Topp at Wilhelmshaven. Several days later she sailed to the Baltic Sea to conduct sea trials. 'Tirpitz' was the second and last battleship of the 'Bismarck' class, but weighing 2,000 tons more than her sister, she was the largest warship built in Germany.


The battleship 'Tirpitz' conducting trials in the Baltic Sea during 1941.

1955: British Audacious-class aircraft carrier HMS 'Ark Royal' (R09) was commissioned. She was the world's first aircraft carrier to be commissioned with an angled flight deck.


H.M.S. 'Ark Royal' (R09) during the International Naval Review at Hampton Roads, VA, USA (May 1957).
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History - February 26th
« Reply #163 on: February 26, 2013, 05:02:41 PM »

February 26th...

1790: Vice-Admiral Sir Joshua Rowley (1734-1790), died at the family home of Tendring Hall in Suffolk, England, aged 55 years. Rowley served with distinction in a number of battles throughout his career and was highly praised by his contemporaries. Unfortunately whilst his career was often active he did not have the opportunity to command any significant engagements and always followed rather than led. Rowley however remains one of the stalwart commanders of the wooden walls that kept Britain safe for so long.


Vice-Admiral Sir Joshua Rowley, by George Romney (c.1787/88).

1852: While ferrying British and Irish soldiers and some of their wives and children to Algoa Bay, troopship HMS 'Birkenhead', one of the first iron-hulled ships built for the Royal Navy, was wrecked after striking an uncharted submerged rock off Danger Point, South Africa. There were not enough serviceable lifeboats for all the passengers, and the soldiers famously stood firm, thereby allowing the women and children to board the boats safely.
Of the 643 people on board, only 193 people (and 8 horses) survived, the rest either drowned, died from exposure or were taken by sharks.
The soldiers' chivalry gave rise to the "women and children first" protocol when abandoning ship, while the "Birkenhead drill" of Rudyard Kipling's poem came to describe courage in face of hopeless circumstances.


The Wreck of the 'Birkenhead' by Charles Dixon

1914: The 'Britannic', the third and largest Olympic-class ocean liner of the White Star Line, is launched at the Harland & Wolff shipyard, Belfast.


The launch of 'Britannic', sister to 'Olympic' and 'Titanic'. 26th February1914.

1916: SS 'La Provence', a former ocean liner refitted as an auxillary cruiser during WWI, was transporting troops from France to Salonika when she was torpedoed by the German submarine 'U-35' south of Cape Matapan in the Mediterranean Sea. The ship listed so quickly that many of the lifeboats could not be used. There were 742 survivors. Nearly a thousand French soldiers and sailors died in the sinking.


French liner 'La Provence' in 1912.

1935: Robert Watson-Watt demonstrated RADAR (Radio Detection & Ranging) for the first time, near Daventry, United Kingdom.

1981: A variable-angle ski jump (7-15°), of the type fitted to the Royal Navy's aircraft carriers, becomes operational at Royal Naval Air Station Yeovilton in Somerset.


A Sea Harrier of 801 Sqdn, uses the Ski-Jump at RNAS Yeovilton (HMS Heron), September 2005.
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Bob K

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #164 on: February 26, 2013, 06:34:39 PM »

Please keep these fascinating historical updates coming Adross.  I know you don't get many "replies" but I am sure most of us regularly read them with interest.  Thank you.
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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #165 on: February 26, 2013, 06:45:24 PM »

I will second that! Adross certainly provides us with a mine of interesting information.My problem is that when I find dates to add to the info,it is always too late to add them!
Please keep it coming!
Mick F
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Capt Podge

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #166 on: February 27, 2013, 01:06:42 AM »

Thursday, 27th February 1941   The auxiliary patrol vessel 'Remillo' was sunk by a mine off the Humber.
 
'SS Old Charlton' (1,562t) cargo ship, Hartlepool to London with a cargo of coal was sunk by German aircraft off Felixstowe.
 
 Friday, 27th February 1942   'SS Macgregor' (2,498t) cargo ship, Tyne to Tampa, Florida, United States, was sunk by U 156, NW of Puerto Rico.
 
 
Regards,
 
Ray.
 
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #167 on: February 27, 2013, 01:50:11 AM »

February 27th...

2013: In response to Bob K & Mick F,

Thank you both for the feedback & comments, they're very much appreciated. Personally, I'm not really fussed about generating replies, and wonder if this thread works better without too many, as it allows the dates flow. However, it is certainly reassuring to know that the posts are entertaining some of the registered 'Mayhemers', and not just 'guests' passing through.

FYI, I'm spending far too long doing it though, and having decided to cross-reference many of the dates, discovered that there is a greater amount of inaccurate information on the web than I realistically expected. Consequently, I've now got some 'corrected' trivia saved for dates in January & February next year!

Thanks again guys, :-)

Andy

p.s. I must say 'thanks' to Martin too. He's been a star, going back and amending details when I've later discovered some potential discrepancy with the details within a post.  :-))
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History - February 26/27th
« Reply #168 on: February 27, 2013, 05:13:09 AM »

February 26/27th...

1942: In a floating drydock at Deutsche Werke in Kiel, repairs had just been completed on the German battlecruiser 'Gneisenau', and she was on schedule to deploy to Norway on 6th March. Her ammunition stores had been restocked and she was being readied for a short round of sea-trials before her departure.

During the night of 26-27th February 1942, 49 British RAF bombers took off to attack the ship in the drydock. Arriving over Kiel in clear weather, the aircrews of the 33 Wellingtons, 10 Hampdens & 6 Halifaxes, claimed good results with one of the high-explosive bomb's scoring a direct hit on the bows of the 'Gneisenau'.

The bomb had struck the forecastle, penetrating the armored deck and into the forward ammunition magazine. The red-hot bomb fragments ignited the recently restocked propellant charges in the forward turret, causing tremendous damage as they exploded. The turret was thrown off its mount and the entire bow section was burned out. The blast killed approximately 116 men and injured at least 21 others.

The damage would prove sufficient to bring about the end of 'Gneisenau' as a fighting unit. 
The RAF lost 2 Wellingtons and 1 Halifax during the operation.
Bombs dropped in the town of Kiel destroyed several houses and killed 16 people.



 
Images of 'Gneisenau', severely damaged in the drydock in Kiel, 1942.
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History - February 27th...
« Reply #169 on: February 27, 2013, 06:22:34 PM »

February 27th...
 
1617: Sweden and Russia sign the Treaty of Stolbovo, ending the Ingrian War and stripping Russia of its access to the Baltic Sea.
 
1700: William Dampier became the first known European to visit the largest island of the Bismarck Archipelago in Papua, New Guinea, dubbing it with the Latin name Nova Britannia (New Britain).
 
1870: The Japanese flag, i.e. A white rectangular flag with a large red disk (representing the sun) in the centre, is first adopted as the national flag for Japanese merchant ships under Proclamation No. 57 of Meiji 3 (issued on February 27, 1870).
Eight months later, it is adopted for use by the Navy under Proclamation No. 651 of Meiji 3 (issued on October 27, 1870).


1941: During the night, 30 British Wellington bombers from Wyton in Cambridgeshire, Marham in Norfolk, and Stradishall in Suffolk attacked battleship Tirpitz. The 26 aircraft that arrived, attacked and reported success, though the actual results were questionable.
 
1942: A hastily-organized multinational allied naval force, formed to defend the East Indies against an overwhelming Imperial Japanese attack, suffers a disastrous defeat during the Battle of the Java Sea. Dutch Rear Admiral Karel Doorman is killed whilst in command of the American-British-Dutch-Australian Strike Force when his Flagship, H.N.L.M.S. 'De Ruyter', was hit by a single Type 93 torpedo from Japanese cruiser 'Haguro' at about 23:30hrs. She sank around 3 hours later with the loss of 345 men.


H.N.L.M.S. 'De Ruyter'

1999: Despite the adverse conditions of the last few days, a helicopter had carried a towline to the tug 'Sea Victory' from the bow section of the 'New Carissa', the once seaworthy wood-chip freighter that beached on 4th February, near Coos Bay, Oregon.
After the towing connections were completed, a two-hour pull by the 'Sea Victory' on 26th February, appeared to pivot the bow slightly seaward.
Today, speculation turned to cautious celebration when 'Sea Victory' applied the power and the front 400ft section of the broken ship began inching into the sea. By the end of the day she had moved 35ft on the rising tide.


'New Carrissa' is tugged slightly seaward by 'Sea Victory' (out of frame).

2004: During an overnight journey from Manila to Bacolod in the Philippines, a militant terrorist attack results in the sinking of the 10,192-ton ferry 'SuperFerry 14' and the deaths of 116 people. Investigators determined that the Superferry was targeted after its owners, WG&A, refused a request for $1m in protection money in 2003. To date, he incident is the world's deadliest terrorist attack at sea.
 

The 'Superferry 14' bombing, Philippines, 2004.
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Tug-Kenny

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #170 on: February 27, 2013, 08:06:09 PM »


We really appreciate your work in compiling all this lovely information.



Keep it coming.     
8)


Ken

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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #171 on: February 27, 2013, 09:51:41 PM »

February 27th... Long before 'Iceman', 'Maverick' and 'Jester', there was 'Spuds'...

1885 & 1928: Theodore Gordon Ellyson, U.S. Navy (27th February 1885 - 27th February 1928), came into the world and left it again on the same day of the month, albeit 43 years apart.

Theodore Gordon Ellyson, the son of Henry Theodore Ellyson and Lizzie (Walker) Ellyson, was born in Richmond, Virginia, on February 27th, 1885.

During his career with the Navy, he managed to fulfill roles serving, on, beneath, and over, the water, and was a recipient of the Navy Cross for distinguished service, whilst stationed at the U.S. Naval Base in Plymouth England.
 
However "Spuds" is probably best remembered for his achievements during the period from January 1911 when he reported for aviation duty at North Island, San Diego, California. There he met and received instruction from Glenn Curtiss, and became closely associated with the development of naval aviation, eventually earning the distinction of being appointed Naval Pilot Number 1.


Lieutenant Theodore Gordon Ellyson, USN.
Naval Pilot No. 1, in 1911.

Unfortunately, tragedy struck "Spuds'" on his 43rd birthday. By now, married with children, he received a dispatch from Annapolis that one of his daughters was ill. Granted a leave, he left Virginia on board a Loening OL-7 amphibian plane to make the two hour flight home. He never arrived. The aircraft went down soewhere in the lower Chesapeake Bay.

For over a month the Navy searched for the missing plane, but to no avail. Commander Theodore G. Ellyson’s body washed ashore on April 11th, 1928. He was buried in the Naval Academy Cemetery, in Annapolis.
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Capt Podge

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Re: This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #172 on: February 28, 2013, 12:30:31 AM »

Wednesday, 28th February 1940   'SS Stofoss' (1,508t) a Swedish ship sank in 40 metres of water, due to a collision 10 miles E of Beadnell at 55°32'00"N - 01°20'00"W.
 
 Friday, 28th February 1941   'SS Holmelea' (4,223t) cargo ship, Rosario, Argentina to Hull with a cargo of grain was sunk by U 47 in the North-western Approaches. Twenty-seven of her crew were lost.
 
 
Regards,
 
Ray.
 
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History - February 28th
« Reply #173 on: February 28, 2013, 01:40:33 PM »

February 28th...
 
1849: SS 'California', establishes the first regular steamboat service between the East and West coast of the United States, via the Straits of Magellan (Cape Horn), when she arrives in San Francisco Bay, 4 months 22 days after leaving New York Harbour (October 6th 1848).
 

 
1890: On the North Queensland coast, RMS 'Quetta', a British India Line merchant ship on a regular route between Great Britain, India and the Far East, was in the hands of an experienced pilot as she sailed through the Torres Strait, en route to Thursday Island. Turning into the Adolphus Channel to round Cape York at around 21:15hrs, the ship struck an uncharted rock  in the middle of the channel near Albany Island.
The rock ripped a hole through the plates from the bow to the engine room amidships, 4 to 12 feet wide. The ship sank in less than five minutes. Of the 292 people aboard, 134 perished. At the time, it was the worst maritime disaster in Queensland's history.
 

 R.M.S. 'Quetta', on the River Thames near Gravesend, England, 1884.

1893: The USS 'Indiana' (Battleship No.1) is launched. She is lead ship of her class and the first true battleship of the United States Navy,  comparable to foreign battleships of the time. The launch was attended by around 10,000 people, including President Benjamin Harrison, several members of his cabinet and the two senators from Indiana.
 

U.S.S. 'Indiana' in Philadelphia (Digitally colourised image)Late 1800's)

1935: Wallace Hume Carothers (27th April 1896 - 29th April 1937), chemist, inventor and the leader of organic chemistry at DuPont, creates 'polyamide 6-6', the substance that would come to be known as Nylon. He would later help to lay the groundwork for Neoprene. Tragicallyfor Wallace Carothers, a long-time sufferer of depression, even his breakthrough didn't give him peace of mind and took his own life just two years later.
 
1941: During the night 23 British RAF Hampden aircraft from Waddington, Lincolnshire, England, attacked battleship Tirpitz at Wilhelmshaven, Germany. Low clouds resulted in only 4 aircraft locating the battleship, and they failed to hit their target.
 
1942: The Battle of Sunda Strait occurs on the night of 28th February-1st March 1942, when the Australian light cruiser HMAS 'Perth' and the American heavy cruiser USS 'Houston' faced a major Imperial Japanese Navy task force. In a ferocious night action that ended after midnight, the two Allied cruisers were sunk. Two Japanese transports and a minesweeper were sunk by friendly torpedoes'. Two Japanese other transports were also sunk but later refloated.
696 men on board the 'Houston' were killed, while 368 others were saved. 'Perth' lost 375 men, with 307 others saved. The captains of both cruisers were also killed.
 

Commemorative plaque for H.M.A.S. 'Perth' and U.S.S. 'Houston'.
Rockingham Naval Memorial Park

1999: Near Coos Bay, Oregon, the morning tide is the highest yet, allowing the salvage tug, 'Sea Victory' to drag the bow section of the broken dry-bulk freighter, 'New Carissa', 35 feet in the morning and another 25 feet shortly before midnight.
 

The bow of the 'New Carissa' moves slowly past her stern.
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ardarossan

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This Day In 'Boating' History
« Reply #174 on: February 28, 2013, 10:26:11 PM »

A handful of facts, events, and trivia, that might otherwise only be remembered every fourth year, i.e. Leap Year.

February 29th...

1504: Whilst stranded on the island of Jamaica, Christopher Columbus, uses his knowledge of the imminent lunar eclipse to manipulate the indigenous natives into provisioning him and his hungry men, until they are rescued, in July.


Natives responding to the lunar eclipse predicted by Columbus.

1644: Dutch seafarer, explorer and merchant, Abel Janszoon Tasman, begins his second Pacfic voyage in command of three ships, 'Limmen' ,' Zeemeeuw', and 'Bracq' (a smaller, more maneuverable boat for investigating inlets), when he embarks from Banda in the Moluccas, steering southeast along the south coast of New Guinea.

1892: Britain & U.S. sign a of 'Treaty of Arbitration' relating to seal hunting in the Bering Sea.

1904: In Washington, DC, a seven-man commission was created to hasten the construction of the Panama Canal.

1940: In the English Channel, en route to Hartlepool from Marseilles, Tyne-built 'Maria Rosa', an Italian-owned merchant steamer loaded with ballast was hit in the foreship by one G7e torpedo from German submarine U-20 and sank by the bow at 22:32 hrs.  The neutralship had been missed by a first G7e torpedo at 21:45 hrs.

1944: The operation to retake the Japanese-held Admiralty Islands, codenamed 'Operation Brewer', begins at 08:17hrs when the first elements of the U.S. assault force arrive on a small isolated beach on the south shore of Los Negros - the third-largest island in the group. LCPR's continue to ferry further troops, brought to area aboard 3 x high speed transposts (APD's), and nine destroyers.


The First Wave lands on Los Negros, Admiralty Islands, February 29th, 1944.
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