Naval History Magazine - October 2009 Volume 23, Number 5

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Cover Story
The seeds of the greatest naval battle of the Pacific war were not planted by U.S. Navy strategists, but rather by a larger-than-life Army general and the President of the United...


  • On Our Scope
    Richard G. Latture, Editor-in-Chief


    Often, history's greatest battles are the hardest to understand. That's certainly true for Leyte Gulf, which took place 65 years ago. The confusing battle seemingly had it all: a pitched big-gun fight, carrier-plane strikes, the...

  • Historic Aircraft: The New Flying Boats
    By Norman Polmar

    The "New" Flying Boats

    During World War I-with the support of a fledgling aircraft industry-the U.S. Navy developed some excellent patrol flying boats. These included the only American-designed aircraft to see combat in the...

  • 'Hell Broke Loose' at Leyte Gulf
    By Marc D. Bernstein
    The cruiser USS Birmingham paid a grievous price for her efforts to save the wounded aircraft carrier Princeton.

  • A Warriors Destiny
    By James D. Hornfischer
    The author of The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors recounts the World War II naval career of Robert C. Hagen, which, after nearly ending at the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal, culminated with his destroyer's forlorn charge at...
  • Returning the Last Conspirator
    By Andrew C. A. Jampoler
    Nearly 20 months after the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln, a small Navy steam corvette received a grave if not unconventional order: Return John Surratt, the last of the Lincoln conspirators to escape justice, back to...

Subscriber Only Content

  • Naval History Digital Edition

    A digital edition of the October issue of Naval History is available for current USNI members to view. The magazine image below is a...

  • Looking Back
    By Paul Stillwell

    FDR's Island Home

    When driving onto Campobello Island, one passes through Lubec, Maine-the easternmost town in the United States-and across the Franklin D. Roosevelt International Bridge. Reaching the island pushes the clock an hour...

  • In Contact

    'Action This Day of Days'

    (See C. D. Yung, pp. 20-25, June 2009 Naval History)

    Michael Whitby, Senior Naval Historian, Canadian Department of...

  • Naval History News

    American Added to Atomic Bomb Victim List

    The Japanese recently added the name of a U.S. Navy pilot to the roll of atomic bomb victims at their state-run memorial hall in Hiroshima. Ensign John Hantschel was only 23 when his F6F Hellcat...

  • Historic Fleets
    By Robert J. Cressman

    Triage at Sea

    The smallest things are often the most easily overlooked. That also applies to some of the most diminutive surface ships, PCE(R)s-patrol craft, escort rescue. Only 13 of the vessels were built, and their role in World War...

  • MacArthur, FDR, and the Politics of Leyte Gulf
    By Lieutenant Commander Thomas J. Cutler, U.S. Navy (Retired)<p>
    The seeds of the greatest naval battle of the Pacific war were not planted by U.S. Navy strategists, but rather by a larger-than-life Army general and the President of the United States.

    The Battle of Leyte Gulf was the...

  • 'Performed All Their Duties Well'
    Mark L. Evans
    Naval aviation was barely three years old in 1914 when it had its baptism of fire over Mexico.

    Lieutenants (junior grade) Patrick N. L. Bellinger and Richard C. Saufley raced over to hydroaeroplane AH-3 and rose aloft in...

  • Light on the Horizon
    By Rear Admiral Sir David Scott, Royal Navy (Retired), with Julia S. Pullicino
    On a dark Mediterranean night in 1943, a submariner's indiscretion saved his own life as well as the lives of his crewmates.

    National stereotyping and smoking: Two habits now viewed with disdain. In fact, if you were to...

  • Left High and Dry by a Tsunami
    By J. Gordon Vaeth


    Tsunami narratives seldom mention the results of a sizeable vessel's encounter with one of the seismic sea waves. Among the U.S. warships that have endured such experiences, the story of the USS Wateree stands alone, for she is the...

  • An Aviation Giant's Days at the Academy
    By Donald Wills Douglas Jr. and Captain William O. Harrison, U.S. Navy (Retired)
    Before he became one of history's most famous aircraft designers, Donald W. Douglas was a studious U.S. Naval Academy midshipman with a love for building model airplanes.
  • Museum Report
    By Fred Brown

    Ghost of Pearl Harbor

    Housed in a most unusual museum in one of East Tennessee's historic mountain towns is a significant record and collection of memorabilia from the USS Tennessee (BB-43), one of the unsung battleship heroes of World...

  • Book Reviews

    Battle of Surigao Strait

    Anthony P. Tully. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2009. 352 pp. Maps. Appen. Notes. Bib. Index. $27.95

    Reviewed by Tim Bean


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