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Office of the Commandant/Records of Annual Summer Practice Cruises: General Correspondence of the Summer Practice Cruise, 1911: Finding Aid

Published in November 2016

Summary Information

  • Publisher: United States Naval Academy. Special Collections & Archives.
  • Publisher Address:
    589 McNair Road
    Annapolis, Maryland 21402-5029, USA
    Phone: 410-293-6922
    https://www.usna.edu/Library/sca/index.php
  • Call number: RG 405.3.2 Entry 166
  • Location: Special Collections & Archives Department - Archives
  • Title: Office of the Commandant/Records of Annual Summer Practice Cruises: General Correspondence of the Summer Practice Cruise
  • Dates: 1911
  • Size: 5 linear inches (1 manuscript box)
  • Creator: United States Naval Academy. Commandant of Midshipmen
  • Language(s) of material: English
  • Abstract: This series contains general correspondence of the summer practice cruise in 1911.

History of the Annual Summer Practice Cruises

The first annual midshipman training cruise commenced in 1851 with cruises aboard the steamer John Hancock and sloop-of-war Preble, the latter of which was subsequently assigned to the Naval Academy as its first training vessel. With the success of this first cruise, the Academy's academic program was formally amended in November 1851 to allow all four years of academic study to run consecutively. The annual cruises continued aboard U.S.S. Preble, including the Academy's first foreign cruises to the West Indies in 1852 and Spain in 1853, until 1859, when the Preble was permanently replaced by U.S.S. Plymouth (Sloop-of-war). Later in 1859, Plymouth was joined at the Academy by the frigate U.S.S. Constitution.

Following the outbreak of the Civil War, the summer practice cruise was temporarily suspended in 1861 as the Naval Academy settled in at Newport, Rhode Island. The cruises resumed the very next year, with cruises aboard the sloops-of-war U.S.S. John Adams and U.S.S. Marion, the latter of which was under the command of Lieutenant Stephen B. Luce. In 1863, U.S.S. Marion was joined by the sloop-of-war U.S.S. Macedonian and the yacht America. Under the command of Stephen B. Luce, the Macedonian sailed for England where she patrolled for Confederate ships. In 1864, U.S.S. Marion, U.S.S. Macedonian, and the yacht America were joined by U.S.S. Marblehead, sailing as a squadron in search of C.S.S. Florida.

In 1871, U.S.S. Constitution was detached from the Academy as a training vessel and replaced by U.S.S. Constellation (Sloop-of-war), aboard which every summer cruise would be made until 1894. Two years after the departure of the Constitution, the yacht America was also detached from the Academy. In 1894, summer training cruises were transferred to the purpose-built steamer U.S.S. Bancroft. Proving insufficient in size, the Bancroft was turned over to the Coast Guard only two years later, to be replaced by U.S.S. Monongahela (Screw sloop-of-war). 1900 saw the arrival of the steel-sheathed bark U.S.S. Chesapeake (renamed Severn in 1904), which served the summer cruise until 1907.

In 1909, the midshipmen made their last summer cruise under sail aboard the Civil War veteran U.S.S. Hartford (Screw sloop-of-war). Following Hartford's detachment, summer training cruises were largely performed aboard modern battleships in small dedicated training squadrons. This practice continued, interrupted by World War II (which restricted summer cruises to Chesapeake Bay) until 1958, when the modern practice of distributing midshipmen among active ships of the fleet was instituted.

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Description of Contents

This series contains general correspondence of the summer practice cruise in 1911, under the command of Commandant of Midshipmen Commander Robert E. Coontz, and includes reports about the cruise, boards and courts, coal, excursions, liberty and patrol, sports and races, and Gibraltar.

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Arrangement

The Office of the Commandant/Records of Annual Summer Practice Cruises: General Correspondence of the Summer Practice Cruise is arranged by subject.

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Access and Use

Access

Access is unrestricted.

Use

Use is unrestricted.

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Acquisition and Appraisal

Custodial History

RG 405 Records of the United States Naval Academy is the property of the National Archives and Records Administration. The materials are housed at the United States Naval Academy, William W. Jeffries Memorial Archives, an affiliated archive, as per a Memorandum of Agreement between the National Archives and Records Administration and the United States Naval Academy.

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Related Materials

Related Archival Material

Additional material pertaining to summer practice cruises can be found in RG 405 Entries 160 through 180.

Materials Cataloged Separately

No materials have been removed from this collection and cataloged separately.

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Processing and Other Information

Preferred Citation

Office of the Commandant/Records of Annual Summer Practice Cruises: General Correspondence of the Summer Practice Cruise, RG 405.3.2 Entry 166

Special Collections & Archives Department

Nimitz Library

United States Naval Academy

Processing Information

Inventory prepared by David D'Onofrio in October 2016. Scope and Content Note prepared by Geraldine N. Phillips and Aloha South in 1975.

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Subject Headings

Name and Subject Terms

  • United States Naval Academy -- Midshipmen -- Cruises

Genre Terms

  • Correspondence
  • Reports
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Contents List

Box 1 Folder 1

General, 1911

Box 1 Folder 2

Navy Department, 1911 March-August

Box 1 Folder 3

Reports on Cruise, 1911 June-August

Box 1 Folder 4

Boards and Courts, 1911 May-August

Box 1 Folder 5

Coal, 1911 March-July

Box 1 Folder 6

Squadron Commander Personal, 1911 July-August

Box 1 Folder 7

Excursions, 1911 June-August

Box 1 Folder 8

Liberty and Patrol, 1911 June-July

Box 1 Folder 9

Sports and Races, 1911 June-August

Box 1 Folder 10

Mess Attendants, 1911 March-May

Box 1 Folder 11

Hospital Cases, 1911 June-August

Box 1 Folder 12

Queenstown, 1911 June-August

Box 1 Folder 13

Kiel, 1911 May-July

Box 1 Folder 14

Bergen, 1911 June-July

Box 1 Folder 15

Gibraltar, 1911 August

Box 1 Folder 16

Miscellaneous Correspondence, 1911 May-August

Box 1 Folder 17

Midshipmen Miscellaneous, 1911 May-August

Box 1 Folder 18

Midshipmen Special Conduct Reports, 1911 June-August

Box 1 Folder 19

Telegrams and Cablegrams, 1911 June-August

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