53 feet of rock and roll, 119 years on

Here we see Mr. John Philip Holland’s iconic submersible, adopted by the Navy as Submarine Torpedo Boat # 1, partially submerged off the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland, in the summer of 1901.

Courtesy of the Clarence Grace Collection. U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph. Catalog #: NH 63088

Note USS Holland‘s 13-star boat flag, signal mast fitted amidships and commissioning pennant. A monitor is in the left background.

Just over the size of a modern semi-truck trailer, she carried an 8-inch dynamite gun (!) as well as an 18-inch torpedo tube and three torpedoes, making her fairly deadly for her size.

Holland, just 53-feet long, was commissioned 12 October 1900– 119 years ago today– and served only five years before being laid up. The Navy sold the little 74-ton vessel in 1913 and she was on public display until scrapped during the Depression.

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