Robert Chambliss Light Papers, 1944-1967 (bulk 1944): Finding Aid
Published in June 2019
- Publisher: United States Naval Academy. Special Collections & Archives.
- Publisher Address:
589 McNair Road
Annapolis, Maryland 21402-5029, USA
- Call number: MS 506
- Location: Special Collections & Archives Department - Manuscripts
- Title: Robert Chambliss Light Papers
- Dates: 1944-1967
- Bulk Dates: 1944
- Size: 0.63 linear feet
- Container Summary: 1 manuscript box, 1 half-manuscript box
- Creator: Light, Robert Chambliss, 1922-1996
- Language(s) of material: English
- Abstract: Robert Chambliss Light was an officer in the United States Navy and a World War II submariner. The Robert Chambliss Light Papers span from 1944 to 1967, with a majority of the documents produced in 1944. The papers are predominantly the product of Light's training in submarines at Submarine Officers School in New London and his follow-up trainings at Fleet Sonar School, Communication School, Ship Identification School, and Torpedo Fire Control School.
Biography of Robert Chambliss Light
Robert Chambliss Light was born on February 18, 1922 in Scottsville, Virginia. Following his graduation from the University of South Carolina with a degree in electrical engineering in February 1944, Light was commissioned an Ensign in the United States Navy on February 26. After attending Submarine Officers School in New London from April to June of 1944, Light served on a series of submarines from 1944 through 1953, including U.S.S. Thresher (Submarine: SS-200), U.S.S. Dace (Submarine: SS-247), U.S.S. Cutlass (Submarine: SS-478), U.S.S. Sea Owl (Submarine: SS-405), and U.S.S. Atule (Submarine: SS-403), culminating in his command of U.S.S. Bluefish (Submarine: SS-222). Late in 1953, he was assigned to shore duty at the U.S. Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Training Center in Portsmouth, Virginia where he served as Commanding Officer.
In July 1956, Light returned to duty at sea as Executive Officer and Navigator of U.S.S. Beale (Destroyer: DD-471) and member of the staff of Commander Destroyer Squadron 26. In May 1958, he assumed command of U.S.S. Darby (Destroyer escort: DE-218). While under Light's command, Darby served as the escort vessel for the Newport to Bermuda Yacht Race. Light was then assigned to the Enlisted Performance Division of the Bureau of Naval Personnel in March 1959 for roughly two years before assuming command of U.S.S. Haynsworth (Destroyer: DD-700) in July 1961. Under Light's command, Haynsworth operated in the Mediterranean and provided flood relief in Kenya.
Light detached from U.S.S. Haynsworth in November 1963. The remainder of his career in the U.S. Navy was spent in a research capacity at the Naval Ordnance Laboratory in White Oak, Maryland: first with the Undersea Warfare Research and Development Planning Council and ultimately with the Anti-Submarine Warfare Systems Project. Robert Chambliss Light retired from the United States Navy on November 1, 1967 and died on July 7, 1996.
Description of Contents
The Robert Chambliss Light Papers, comprising 0.63 linear feet of documentation, span from 1944 to 1967, with a majority of the documents produced in 1944. The papers are predominantly the product of Light's training in submarines at Submarine Officers School in New London and his follow-up trainings at Fleet Sonar School, Communication School, Ship Identification School, and Torpedo Fire Control School.
Included in the collection are handwritten notes, memoranda, examinations, instructional materials, mechanical drawings, and newspapers.
The Robert Chambliss Light Papers are arranged alphabetically by duty station, document type, and topic. The overwhelming majority of the materials are the product of Light's early training as a United States Navy submarine officer at Submarine Officers School during World War II. These materials cover his studies in submarine electrical systems, diesel engines, communications systems, ship identification, and weapons systems, especially torpedoes. Additional training materials and notes are the product of Light's follow-up studies at Fleet Sonar School, Communication School, Ship Identification School, and Torpedo Fire Control School, with a focus on torpedo firing spreads. The collection also includes several photographs from Light's service aboard U.S.S. Dace (Submarine: SS-247) and U.S.S. Bluefish (Submarine: SS-222), the latter of which includes photographs of a visit by actress Terry Moore. Light's service aboard the Dace is also represented by a sample of the ship's letterhead.
The Robert Chambliss Light Papers are arranged alphabetically by duty station, document type, and topic.
Access and Use
Access to any potentially classified material is restricted.
Copyright and Permission
The Robert Chambliss Light Papers are the physical property of Nimitz Library. Copyright belongs to the authors or creators of the works, or their legal representatives. For further information, consult the Head, Special Collections & Archives.
It is the responsibility of the researcher to secure written permission to publish, reprint, or reproduce material from Special Collections & Archives. The researcher assumes responsibility for infringement of copyright or literary or publication rights. Please contact the Head, Special Collections & Archives for permission to publish and for further information.
Acquisition and Appraisal
Provenance and Acquisition
Gift of Robert Chambliss Light, Jr. in December 1997. Accession No. 97-77.
Related Archival Material
There are no other known collections of papers of Robert Chambliss Light.
Materials Cataloged Separately
No materials have been removed from this collection and cataloged separately.
Processing and Other Information
Robert Chambliss Light Papers, MS 506
Special Collections & Archives Department
United States Naval Academy
This collection was processed by David D'Onofrio in June 2019. Finding aid written by David D'Onofrio in June 2019.
Name and Subject Terms
- Light, Robert Chambliss, 1922-1996
- Naval education -- United States
- United States. Navy -- Submarine forces -- Training of
- World War, 1939-1945 -- Naval operations, American
- World War, 1939-1945 -- Naval operations -- Submarine
- Design drawings
- Examinations (documents)
- Notes (documents)
- Student projects
- Submarine School (Naval Submarine Base (Groton, Conn.))