Black Submariners in the United States Navy, 1940-1975

Black Submariners in the United States Navy, 1940-1975

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For as long as an American naval force has existed, black sailors have served it with bravery, distinction, and little or no recognition. They have since earned praise for service in the American Revolution, the War of 1812, and the Civil War, and more recently, they were integral to the development of the U.S. Submarine Service. Their roles limited by segregation, black submariners nonetheless were a key element of the qSilent Serviceq throughout World War II. With desegregation came expanded opportunities, and black submariners witnessed the birth and evolution of the nuclear-powered submarine, and some of the tensest moments of the Cold War. These men paved the way for those who followed--their contributions deserve recognition, and their stories deserve to be told. This exploration of the role of African American submariners chronicles their service from World War II through the Cold War era. An historical overview of black sailors and the evolution of the Steward's Branch, to which black sailors were eventually restricted, precede descriptions of becoming a steward and a submariner, and of life as a submariner during World War II. An account of black submariners in post-war service during desegregation, the development of the nuclear submarine, and throughout the Cold War follows. Oral histories of over fifty black submariners who served in World War II and post-war form the heart of the book. Photographs of the men profiled, including wartime photographs, complement the text. Appendices outline the naval steward rating system, list all black submarine stewards serving in World War II, top stewards by number of war patrols, and those lost or killed during wartime service. Rear Admiral Melvin G. Williams, Jr., submarine fleet commander and son of one of the men profiled, provides a foreword.He told me not to handle problems myself, a€œJust come down to my stateroom, thata#39;s what Ia#39;m here for. ... five war patrols, during which time she sank seven ships under captains Arthur Krapf and Albert Fuhrman and rescued one downed aviator. ... In Ai96Ai he commissioned the FBM boat Abraham Lincoln but didna#39;t like this duty. ... Elvin Mayo passed away in Rochester, New Hampshire, in October 2003.

Title:Black Submariners in the United States Navy, 1940-1975
Author:Glenn A. Knoblock
Publisher:McFarland - 2005-07-06


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