June 24, 2017

Today in History: John Paul Jones

Today in History–July 18–the Library of Congress features naval officer John Paul Jones, who died on this date in 1792 in obscurity in France. Born John Paul, this seaman added the name Jones after killing a man in what he said was self defense in the West Indies. Jones went on to serve successfully in the U.S. Continental navy and the Russian Navy under Empress Catherine II of Russia. More than a hundred years following his death his remains were discovered and brought to the United States and … [Read more...]

Today in History: George Dewey

Today in History–December 26–the Library of Congress features Commodore George Dewey, born on this day in 1837. Dewey was the Pacific naval commander when the U.S. declared war on Spain on April 25, 1898. Less than a week later he became a national hero following the decisive and swift 6-hour destruction of the Spanish fleet in the Battle of Manila Bay. Learn more about George Dewey by visiting the Today in History section, then click the links below to access primary sources related to this … [Read more...]

Today in History: Air Raid on Pearl Harbor

Today in History–December 7–the Library of Congress features the Japanese air raid on Pearl Harbor, which occurred on this day in 1941. A hurried Navy dispatch sent out the news: AIR RAID ON PEARL HARBOR X THIS IS NOT DRILL. More than 2,300 Americans were killed, 160 aircraft were destroyed, and 12 ships sank. The next day the United States declared war on Japan. Learn more about this fateful day in U.S. history by visiting the Today in History section, then click the links below to access … [Read more...]

Today in History: Union Captures Fort Morgan

Today in History–August 23–the Library of Congress features the capture of Fort Morgan, Alabama by the Union navy on this day in 1864. Earlier in the month (August 5), when Admiral David Farragut was warned of mines (referred to as torpedos) in Mobile Bay, he reportedly replied, "Damn the torpedos!" and ordered the ship to continue its course. Although the flagship Hartford scraped the mines, none exploded and the rest of the Union fleet was able to follow. The capture of Fort Morgan enabled the … [Read more...]

Today in History: U.S. Declares War on Spain

Today in History–April 25–the Library of Congress features the Spanish-American War, declared on this date in 1898. Learn more about this short, decisive war by visiting the Today in History section and reviewing The World of 1898: The Spanish-American War, then click the links below to learn even more from primary sources. Spanish-American War primary source set The Spanish-American War in Motion Pictures Topical (chronological) title list of Spanish-American war motion … [Read more...]

Featured Image: Detail of Submarine Section

Today in History: Submarines … [Read more...]

Today in History: Submarines

Today in History–April 11–the Library of Congress features submarines. Although submarines were used as early as the War of 1812, the U.S. Navy acquired its first submarine on this day in 1900.  Find out about the first submarine to sink a battleship and more by visiting the Today in History section, then follow the links below to access related primary sources. Submarine primary source set Featured Image: Detail of Submarine Section Bushnell's American turtle one-man … [Read more...]

Today in History: Spanish-American War

Today in History–February 15–the Library of Congress features the Spanish-American War, sparked on this date in 1898 when an explosion sank the battleship U.S.S. Maine in the Havana, Cuba harbor, killing 266 of the 354 crew members. Two months later, President William McKinley announced a state of war with Spain on April 25, 1898. Learn more by visiting the Today in History section and reviewing The World of 1898: The Spanish-American War, then click the links below to learn even more from … [Read more...]

Today in History: Trent Affair

Today in History–November 8–the Library of Congress features the Trent Affair, which was sparked on this day in 1861 when U.S. Navy Captain Charles Wilkes commanded the crew of the U.S.S. San Jacinto to intercept the British mail steamer Trent and arrest Confederate commissioners James M. Mason and John Slidell. Find out more about this international incident and Charles Wilkes by visiting the  Today in History section, then follow the links below to access more primary source picks and teaching … [Read more...]

Today in History: The U.S. Naval Academy & the Navy

Today in History–October 10–the Library of Congress features the United States Naval Academy, which began its first term on this day in 1845.  Learn more about the naval academy and the U.S. navy in the Today in History section then click the links below to access more navy-related primary sources. Naval Academy primary source set Selected naval images (Pictorial Americana) Navy images Navy films & video interviews Navy songs and oral histories Navy oral histories … [Read more...]