Naval History - April 1996 - Disaster at Gosport
April: Disaster at Gosport - dark chapter in Union naval history during the Civil War; USS Constellation
UNITED STATES NAVAL INSTITUTE March / April 1996 Volume 10 • Number 2_
4.)In the previous issue, purely by coincidence, we published a tribute to Admiral Arleigh Burke, who died just as Naval History hit the newsstands. In this issue, we pay our last respects to the venerable shipmate of thousands with a vivid account of the World War II engagement that begat a legend—the Battle of Cape St. George—accompanied by the eulogy delivered at Admiral Burke's funeral in the U.S. Naval Academy Chapel by a fellow surface warrior, Vice Admiral Joseph Metcalf.
As the city of Baltimore puts in its oar to save the sloop-of-war Constellation, Naval Historical Foundation President, Admiral James L. Holloway, III, recalls a poem written by former Congressman and Chief of Protocol James W. Symington, who was credited with helping preserve the Constellation 30 years ago. Both team up in support of renewed efforts to save the old ship.
Also in this issue, we chart the course of 16th-century mariner Piri Reis, relive the Civil War debacle at Gosport, establish a South Vietnamese Marine Corps, and debate the consequences of World War II.
Naval History, ISSN 1042-1920, is published bimonthly by the U.S. Naval Institute, 2062 Generals Highway, Annapolis, Maryland 21401. The U. S. Naval Institute is a private, self-supporting, nonprofit professional society, which publishes Proceedings magazine as a forum for the sea services, and professional books. The Naval Institute is not part of the U.S. Government. The opinions and assertions herein are the authors'. Second class postage paid at Annapolis, Maryland, and at additional mailing offices. Annual Naval History subscription rates: Naval Institute member, $18.00; nonmember, $20.00. International subscribers add $6.00. Copyright 1996, U.S. Naval Institute. Copyright is not claimed for editorial material in the public domain. Postmaster: Send address changes to Naval History, U.S. Naval Institute, Circulation Department, 2062 Generals Highway, Annapolis, Maryland 21401.
Unintended Consequences 12
By Kenneth J. Hagan
Former TV host David Hartman leads a panel of distinguished historians to debate the political and social impact of World War II.
Disaster at Gosport 20
By Captain Kendall King, U.S. Navy (Retired)
One dark chapter in Union naval history began early in the Civil War, when a Virginia shipyard and its warships went up in flames.
`How Little the World Is!' 25
By Commander Paolo Bembo, Italian Navy
A nautical chart drawn in 1513 sheds light on its maker and his times.
Home City to Help the Constellation 28
By Frank D. Roylance
The city of Baltimore and prominent members of its private sector pledge to keep the old sloop-of-war afloat.
We Can't Give Up the Ship 30
By Admiral James L. Holloway, III, U.S. Navy (Retired)
How a simple poem saved the Constellation from sinking 30 years ago.
A Letter for the Constellation 31
By James W. Symington
The author of the poem renews his support for preserving the ship.
Derailing the Last Tokyo Express 34
By Eugene Wolfe
A shipmate of Captain Arleigh Burke disposes of the feared Japanese "Tokyo Express" with DesRon 23's hard-nosed "Little Beavers."
The Spirit of '31-Knot' Burke 36
By Vice Admiral Joseph Metcalf, III, U.S. Navy (Retired)
The venerated warrior and sailor knew the stuff of a good naval officer.
The Chesapeake-Leopard Affair 40
By Spencer Tucker and Frank T. Reuter
An 1807 clash in Lynnhaven Bay spelled disaster from the very start.
Starting the Corps in South Vietnam 45
By Colonel Victor J. Croizat, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)
One pioneer Marine tells how he established a South Vietnamese Corps. Departments
Looking Back 4 Books of Interest 53 Salty Talk 60
In Contact 6 Museum Report 54 Historic Fleets 61
Book Reviews 50 Naval History News 57 Reunions 63
Cover: "Commodore Arleigh A. Burke, USN" by Albert Murray, April 1947. Until his recent death, Arleigh Burke was the most well-known naval hero alive. For the dramatic story of the Battle of Cape St. George and a tribute from a shipmate, see pages 34-39.
World War II: Unintended Consequences
UNITED STATES NAVAL INSTITUTE
ot" Burke Stops
Civil War Disaster