In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words
To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…
Major General George Patton and Rear Admiral John Hall, US Navy (behind Patton – and, Yes, the Admiral has his helmet on backward) prepare to go ashore at Fedhala, Morocco during the North African operation, 9 November 1942.
The African-American Soldier with the Thompson gun in the center is MSG William George Meeks. Of note, Meeks, born in 1896, joined the U.S. Cavalry in 1916 and served in the Mexican Intervention chasing Villa, as well as both the Great War and, of course, WWII. He was a longtime orderly of Patton’s and later one of the General’s pallbearers on the military honors casket team that buried him.
It was Meeks that presented his widow Beatrice with Patton’s flag.
The Tommy gun bearing SCNO died in 1965 and is buried in Arlington, Sec: 43, Site: 369.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Oct. 3, 2019) Offical Caption: “The U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron, the Blue Angels, fly in formation with the B-29 Superfortress “Doc” during the 2019 California Capital Air Show in Sacramento.
The Blue Angels are scheduled to conduct 61 flight demonstrations at 32 locations across the country to showcase the pride and professionalism of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps to the American and Canadian public in 2019.”
For reference, Doc is one of only two B-29s that are currently flying, the other being FIFI. Built by Boeing as a late model B-29-70-BW, SN#44-69972, she came too late in WWII to see combat but did endue in USAF service as a radar calibration aircraft and target tug before she was retired to range use in 1956. Her restoration took nine years.
So I am working on a new gun review currently. Check these two .45s out and tell me what you think.
Below on the left is a correct/all-matching circa 1943 Remington-Rand M1911A1 in excellent condition, produced for the War Department’s contract administered by the U.S. Army.
The gun on the right? It’s a new Auto-Ordnance M1911A1 BKO (black oxide finish) which came from the company’s assembly line in Massachusetts last week.
This should prove interesting…watch this space.
SUBRON 11 this week announced that they would, for the next two months, host the Peruvian Submarine BAP Angamos (SS-31), a German-built Type 209 submarine (SSK), at Naval Base Point Loma as part of the Diesel-Electric Submarine Initiative (DESI) program.
“Each year, Submarine Squadron 11 looks forward to DESI and we are thrilled this year to be working with our Peruvian counterpart,” said Capt. Patrick Friedman, CSS-11. “By having an SSK operate and train with us, it allows us to practice on a platform that has a similar signature to our adversaries. Not to mention, there is a great deal of diplomatic goodwill that is fostered through these engagements.”
Peruvian submarines have been a part of the DESI since 2001 and have rotated through the program no less than 16 times since then including sending Angamos’s sistership, BAP Arica, north last year.
The Latin American country has been in the submarino biz since the 1880s and, a full century ago, ordered a quartet of U.S.-made boats, sparking a long run of close U.S-Peruvian submarine partnerships. Those four 187-foot R-class submarines— BAP Islay (R-1), BAP Casma (R-2), BAP Pacocha (R-3), and BAP Arica (R-4)— were ordered from the Electric Boat Company in Connecticut, and delivered in the mid-1920s. Carrying four torpedo tubes, these diesel-electric subs were involved in both the Colombian-Peruvian War and Peruvian-Ecuadorian War before being upgraded back at Groton to extend their life after WWII, at which point they were probably the last 1920s-era diesel boats still in front-line service. Of note, the U.S. Navy used some 27 R-class boats of their own.
To replace these were four more Electric Boat-produced modified U.S. Mackerel-class submarines ordered in 1953. Termed the Abtao-class in service, the quartet– BAP Lobo/Dos de Mayo (SS-41, BAP Tiburon/Abato (SS-42), BAP Atun/Angamos (SS-43) and BAP Merlin/Iquique (SS-44)— remained in service in one form or another into 1998.
Peru then picked up a pair of aging U.S. Balao-class diesel boats in 1974– BAP Pabellón de Pica/La Pedrera (SS-49), ex-USS Sea Poacher (SS/AGSS-406) and BAP Pacocha (SS-48), ex- USS Atule (SS-403)— which they kept in service as late as 1995.
Peru has since acquired six German-built Type 209 (1100 and 1200 series) boats, commissioned starting in 1974:
BAP Angamos (SS-31)
BAP Antofagasta (SS-32)
BAP Arica (SS-36)
BAP Chipana (SS-34)
BAP Islay (SS-35)
BAP Pisagua (SS-33)
The evolution looks like this:
And they are effectively the U.S. Navy’s designated SSK OPFOR team
This month Hermann Historica has a special auction, Die kaiserliche Armee in Feldgrau (The Imperial Army in Field Grey) which includes the famed Lacey Collection of more than 100 often rare uniforms of German uhlan, hussar, field artillery, Marine and infantry regiments from the armies (and sometimes navies) of Prussia, Saxony, and Bavaria. The prices aren’t as bad as you expect, with many of the tunics having starting prices of around 200-300 euros and cap visors less than half that.
There is, naturally, lots of M1910 and wartime grey uniforms, including this gem:
There is also a smattering of bright peacetime uniforms.
And I thought this set was interesting: demobilization clothes issued of feldgrau cloth, for those members of the army headed back home post-Versailles. Swords to plowshares, it seems.