This Day In Naval History: July 1

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

July 1, 2016

Rear Adm. Samuel L. Gravely Jr. (U.S. Navy photo)

Rear Adm. Samuel L. Gravely Jr. (U.S. Navy photo)

1801 - Commodore Richard Dale's squadron arrives at Gibraltar for the protection of American interests and to strike at the Barbary Pirates in the Mediterranean. Squadron ships were USS President, USS Philadelphia, USS Essex, and USS Enterprise.

1850 - The Naval School at Annapolis, Md., is renamed the U.S. Naval Academy and adopts a four-year course of study. Also on this date, Commander Cornelius K. Stribling becomes the first Superintendent of the Naval Academy and serves until the fall of 1853. 

1911 - Designer Glenn Curtiss makes the first flight in the Navys first aircraft, Curtiss A 1, at Lake Keuka, NY, and prepares Lt. Theodore G. Ellyson, the first Naval Aviator, for his two A 1 solo flights. 

1918 - USS Covington (No. 1409), is torpedoed by German submarine (U 86) and sinks the next day while in tow. Of the 776 onboard, all but six are saved. 

1931 - USS Constitution is re-commissioned after a four-year, nearly $1 million restoration. The next day, the ship and crew began a three-year, three-coast tour of the U.S., visiting 76 ports and hosting 4.6 million people; the tour, known as the "National Cruise", was intended to thank U.S. citizens who had supported "Old Ironsides'" restoration.

1943 - USS Thresher (SS 200) attacks a Japanese convoy off the northwest coast of Celebes, in Makassar Strait, damaging destroyer Hokaze and sinks army cargo ship Yoneyama Maru, 38 miles from Balikapan. Six days later, USS Paddle (SS 263) sinks the damaged Hokaze in the Celebes Sea.

1946 - The atmospheric nuclear weapon test, Able, is detonated during Operation Crossroads at the Bikini Atoll, Marshall Islands. 

1972 - Rear Adm. Samuel L. Gravely Jr. becomes the first African-American to achieve flag rank in the U.S. Navy.

(Source: Naval History and Heritage Command, Communication and Outreach Division)

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