Ballou Hall formerly served as the
Engineering Building but is vacant in mid-1993. It is among the six buildings
at the Submarine School named for an enlisted man. Chief Electrician's
Mate William E. Ballou was born in 1911, and served on surface ships, submarine
tenders, and NARWHAL (SS-167). He was lost in TRITON (SS-201) on her sixth
war patrol in which she operated north of New Gunea along with AMBERJACK
(SS-219), and GRAMPUS (SS-207) which also did not return. He was awarded
the Bronze Star medal posthumously for his performance as Chief Electrician's
Mate in charge on TRITON's second patrol, and the Silver Star medal for
outstanding performance of duty on four TRITON war patrols.
Bledsoe Hall houses the Basic Enlisted
Submarine School, honoring Master Chief Torpedoman Samuel H. Bledsoe, Jr.
He was born in 1919 and enlisted in 1940. He served in ten submarines,
including SKIPJACK (SS-184), SEADRAGON (SS-194), QUEENFISH (SS-393), TORSK
(SS-423), TAUTOG (SS-199), SABLEFISH (SS-303), JALLAO (SS-368), PATRICK
HENRY (SSBN-599), CASIMIR PULASKI (SSBN-633), and JAMES K. POLK (SSBN-645).
He was awarded the Bronze Star medal for his outstanding performance as
torpedoman in charge in TORSK on her second war patrol in 1945. He died
Cromwell Hall is devoted to the teaching
of the Officer's Course. It was named in memory of Captain John P. Cromwell,
born in Illinois in 1901, graduated from the Naval Academy in the class
of 1924, and the Submarine School in 1927. He served in S-24, ARGONAUT
(SS-166), (SM1) a minelayer, BARRACUDA (SS-163), and commanded S-20 in
1937. His wartime billets were all Submarine Division Commands until, in
early November 1943, he was ordered to SCULPIN (SS-191) as Wolfpack Commander,
should one be formed. On 29 November Commander Submarine Pacific ordered
the wolfpack activated but never heard from SCULPIN. It was not until after
the war that the survivors of the scuttled SCULPIN revealed that she had
been so severely damaged by depth charges on 18 November that (she) was
forced to fight it out on the surface with a destroyer - and lost. The
Commanding Officer, Commander Fred Connoway, and others were killed, but
Captain Cromwell chose to go down with the ship to protect the privileged
information he held. He was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal
of Honor and the Legion of Merit.
Cross Hall is the enlisted dining facility
for the Submarine School. It honors Steward First Class Joseph Cross who
was born in 1920 and entered the Navy in 1942. He made eight war patrols
in TIGRONE (SS-419). He was awarded the Bronze Star, the Navy and Marine
Corps Medal, and the Navy Commendation Ribbon. He was lost in SCORPION
(SSN-589) in June 1968.
Darby Hall serves as the primary Engineering
Building. It was named in memory of Rear Admiral Jack N. Darby, born in
Texas in 1936, a graduate of the University of Colorado in 1958, and the
Submarine School in 1961. He served in CAIMAN (SS-323), DACE (SSN-607),
THEODORE ROOSEVELT (SSBN-600), THOMAS JEFFERSON (SSBN-618), and was Commanding
Officer of BENJAMIN FRANKLIN (SSBN-640). He died on 19 January 1987 while
Commander Submarine Force Pacific Fleet. Amongst his decorations were three
legions of merit, the Defense Superior Service Medal and two Meritorious
D'Allesandro Hall is the Enlisted Men's
Club and was named to honor Torpedoman's Mate First Class Vincent L. D'Allesandro.
He was ordered to HARDER (SS-257) after Submarine School and was lost on
her sixth war patrol on 24 August 1944.
Dealey center is the Movie Theater
and auditorium for the entire Base. It was named in memory of Commander
Samuel D. Dealey, born in Texas in 1906, graduated from the Naval Academy
in 1930, and Submarine School in 1934. Prior to the War, he served in S-34,
S-36, and BASS (SS-164), decommissioning the latter. Early in 1942, he
commanded S-20, and in 1942 commissioned HARDER (SS-257) in which he blazed
the way by conducting the first of many "down the throat" attacks against
onrushing escorts. For these attacks and others during HARDER's six patrols
in which she sank 16 ships of 54,000 tons, Sam Dealey was awarded the Congressional
Medal of Honor and four Navy Crosses. HARDER was lost when she was depth
charged by a minesweeper off the Philippines on 24 August 1944.
English Hall is utilized for tactical
training, with complete team trainers for the ship's fire control parties.
It was named in memory of Rear Admiral Robert H. English, born in Georgia
in 1888 and graduated from the Naval Academy in the class of 1911. He began
his submarine career in 1914 when he reported to the gasoline driven D-3,
and was in command when the United States entered World War I. He fitted
out and commanded O-4 throughout the war. He held Submarine Division commands
prior to World War II, and was Commander Submarine Squadron FOUR and Commanding
Officer Submarine Base, Pearl Harbor in the early moinths of the war. He
relieved Rear Admiral Thomas Withers as Commander Submarines Pacific in
May 1942, effectively organizing the onslaught against the Japanese Naval
and merchant ships until he and several of his staff were killed in a plane
crash in the California mountains enroute to a stateside conference on
21 January 1943. He was awarded the Navy Cross for the rescue of an officer
trapped in O-5 after an explosion, and a posthumous Distinguished Service
Medal for his tour as ComSubPac.
Fife Hall provides sophisticated Navigation
training for students and ships' teams alike. It employs visual re- creations
of actual harbors in which submarines operate, offering exercises under
all conditions of light and visibility.
It was named in memory of Admiral James
Fife, Jr., born in Nevada in 1897, graduated from the Naval Academy in
the class of 1918, and the Submarine School the same year. He served in
S-3 and R-22, and commanded N-7, R-19 and R-18 until 1923. He returned
to sea in 1935 in command of NAUTILUS (SS-168), and was Chief of Staff
to Commander Submarines Asiatic Fleet when World War II broke out. Ultimately
Jimmy Fife ran the submarine operations out of Brisbane, Australia and
was involved in the long battle to correct the torpedo deficiencies. It
was during this period that Admiral Fife made many operational moves of
his submarines by radio using such calls as "DRUM FROM FIFE", when addressing
DRUM (SS-228). After the War, he was Commander Submarines Atlantic Fleet
from 1947 to 1950. He retired in 1955 after a tour as Deputy Commander
in Chief Mediterranean under Admiral Lord Louis Mountbatten, RN, and died
in 1975. For his wide-ranging service, he was awarded three Distinguished
Service Medals. He bequeathed his estate near New London to the US Navy
as a recreation site.
Fluckey Hall serves as the STS and
Fire Control Technician (FT) School building, and also houses the advanced
sonar and fire control trainers. It was named in honor of Rear Admiral
Eugene B. Fluckey, born in the District of Columbia in 1913, graduated
from the Naval Academy in the Class of 1935, and the Submarine School in
1938. he commenced his submarine career in S-42 and BONITA (SS-165), and
commanded BARB (SS-220) from her seventh through her twelfth war patrols.
After the War, he commanded DOGFISH (SS-350), HALFBEAK (SS-352), and SPERRY
(AS-12). He was Commander Submarines Pacific from 1964 until 1966.
For his service in BARB, he was awarded
the Congressional Medal of Honor and four Navy Crosses, and the ship the
Presidential Unit Citation. BARB sank 16 ships for a total of over 95,000
Gene Fluckey won the Congressional Medal
of Honor on BARB's 11th war patrol. He was a member of Loughlin's Loopers,
a wolfpack. Together, Commander Elliot Loughlin in QUEENFISH (SS-393),
Commander Ty Shephard in PICUDA (SS-382), and Gene Fluckey in BARB harassed
a large convoy off the China coast in January 1945, firing more than 30
torpedoes in a series of attacks. The pack was finally credited with sinking
four ships and damaging two. QUEENFISH and PICUDA departed the area for
lack of torpedoes but Fluckey, frustrated in his search for additional
targets, decided that an aggressive pursuit close to the coast was required.
He was rewarded when he detected many ships in Namkwan Harbor. He penetrated
on the surface in water less than 36 feet, firing eight of his last 12
torpedoes, sinking one ship. He escaped unscathed and after missing a freighter
with his last four torpedoes returned to Pearl Harbor to a royal welcome.
He made one more patrol in BARB, ingeniously sinking ships and craft with
deck-launched rockets, and sending a raiding party ashore which blew up
a train with large loss of life. He retired in 1972 and was awarded two
Legions of merit for post-war service.
Gilmore Hall was the School Administration
and principal classroom building for hundreds of submarine officers, but
is, in 1993, being converted to house the enlisted nuclear power school.
It was named in memory of Commander
Howard W. Gilmore who was born in Alabama in 1902 and graduated from the
Naval Academy in 1926. He attended Submarine School in 1931, and spent
his early career in S-48, SHARK (SS-174), and DOLPHIN (SS-169), after which
he commanded S-48. He commissioned GROWLER (SS-215) at the time of Pearl
harbor and made four war patrols, sinking over 18,000 tons of shipping
before tangling with a patrol boat in a surface action on 7 February 1943.
This concluded with GROWLER ramming the patrol boat with Howard Gilmore
mortally wounded by gunfire on the bridge, and giving the now- famous order
"Take her Down". Lieutenant Commander Arne Shade, Executive Officer, assumed
command and brought the damaged ship home safely. For this action, Gilmore
was posthumously awarded the Congressional medal of Honor, as well as two
Navy Crosses for his other patrols.
Grenfell Hall serves as the Headquarters
for Submarine Group Two.
It was named for Vice Admiral Elton
W. Grenfell, born in Massachusetts in 1903, and graduated from the Naval
Academy in 1926. He attended Submarine School in 1928, and served in R-4
until 1933. He spent two years in PICKEREL (SS-177) before his tour as
Commanding Officer of GUDGEON (SS-211) in which he distinguished himself
by sinking the first Japanese submarine, I-173, west of Midway island,
and two merchant ships. After being injured in a seaplane accident in Pearl
Harbor, he had command of two Submarine Divisions before the end of the
War. He was the first officer to serve as Commander Submarines Pacific
and Atlantic, completing the latter tour in 1964. He retired in 1965 and
died in 1980. He was awarded the Navy Cross, Silver Star, and Presidential
Unit Citation for his duty in GUDGEON, and a Distinguished Service Medal
and three Legions of Merit for post-war duty.
Lewis Hall houses the Radioman Class
C School. It was named in memory of Rear Admiral James R. Lewis, born in
Indiana in 1929, a 1951 graduate of the University of New Mexico, and a
1953 graduate of the Submarine School. Dick served in POMFRET (SS-391),
SWORDFISH (SSN-579), HALIBUT (SSN-587), DANIEL BOONE (SSBN-629), and was
Commanding Officer of SCORPION (SSN-589), and PATRICK HENRY (SSBN-599).
Subsequently, he commanded Submarine Squadron 14 and Submarine Group Two.
He was Deputy Chief for Acquisitions in Naval Material when he died in
1982. He was awarded two Legions of Merit, three Meritorious Service Medals,
and the Navy Commendation Medal, and his commands (received) the Navy Unit
Commendation and the Meritorious Unit Citation.
McNeill Hall formerly housed the Basic
Enlisted School but is being converted to use as the Nuclear Field Class
A School. It was named to honor Chief Electrician's Mate John R. McNeill
who was lost in SCAMP (SS-277) in Empire waters in November 1944. McNeill
was awarded the Bronze Star for his heroic control of a fire in the maneuvering
room of SCAMP on her seventh war patrol in 1944.
Momsen Hall is the Escape Training
Facility, a shallow water pool which replaced the former base landmark,
the 100-foot diving tank. Training is conducted for all aspiring submariners
using the Steinke Hood, the successor to the Momsen lung.
Vice Admiral Charles B. Momsen was born
in New York in 1896, graduated from the Naval Academy in 1919, accelerated
because of World War I from his Class of 1920, and attended the Submarine
School in late 1921. He spent a short tour in O-13, followed by three command
tours in O-15, R-24, and S-1. In the inter-war period, Swede Momsen developed
the Momsen Lung for escape from sunken submarines, and later as Commanding
Officer of the Experimental Diving Unit in Washington introduced helium/oxygen
as the mixture for deep diving, a notable advance. He returned to the Pacific
commanding two Submarine Squadrons prior to taking the first wolfpack of
CERO (SS-225), GRAYBACK (SS-208), and SHAD (SS-235) on patrol in September
1943. The pack sank three ships and damaged several for which Momsen was
awarded the Navy Cross. He subsequently served as Commander Submarines
Pacific and Commander Joint task Force 7 in the Atom Bomb tests. He was
awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the Distinguished Service Medal,
and three Legions of Merit. He retired in 1955 and died in 1967.
17 July 2002
The following additional info contributed
by Robert F. Marble TMCS(SS) USN
(Ret) Port Charlotte, FL .
Webmaster Note: Copy - Peter Maas
book review " THE TERRIBLE HOURS"
- Use back-button to return
|Momsen was responsible for inventing the
"McGann" submarine escape chamber (bell) and was assigned the task of rescuing
the crew and civilians on board USS SQUALUS (SS-192) after she sank in
240' of water, off Portsmouth, NH in 1939. Following this first
and last successful rescue, he was given the task of raising the boat for
salvage, which he accomplished, and his divers used helium-oxygen mix for
the first time.
You may refer to: "THE RESCUER" by Peter
Maas - 1967 or his most recent "THE TERRIBLE HOURS" - 1999.
Morton Hall is the Base Gymnasium used
for a wide variety of events for more than forty years. It was named in
memory of Lieutenant Commander Dudley W. Morton, born in Kentucky in 1907,
graduated from the Naval Academy in the Class of 1930, and from Submarine
School in 1933. He spent four years in S-37, and then successively commanded
R-5, DOLPHIN (SS-169) and WAHOO (SS-238). Morton sank 19 ships of 55,000
tons during his six patrols in WAHOO. His fame stems from a daring penetration
of Wewak harbor in New Guinea in January 1943 during which an escort was
sunk; and a day-long battle against a convoy of four ships of which WAHOO
sank three. She successfully penetrated the Sea of Japan twice but her
first effort was thwarted by faulty torpedoes; and the second resulted
in her loss after sinking one ship on 11 October 1943. Mush Morton was
awarded four Navy Crosses, the Army Distinguished Service Medal, and WAHOO
the Presidential Unit Citation.
Nimitz Hall houses the Submarine Mission
Support Group and the Sonar Technician Submarine (STS) and Electronic Signals
Monitoring (ESM) training courses.
It was named in honor of Fleet Admiral
Chester W. Nimitz. He was born in Texas in 1885, and graduated from the
Naval Academy in 1905. From 1909 until 1912, he served in several gasoline
powered submarines as Commanding Officer of PLUNGER (SS-2), SNAPPER (SS-16),
NARWHAL (SS-17), and the first diesel, SKIPJACK (SS-24). In 1912, he became
Commander Submarine Flotillas Atlantic, the first COMSUBLANT. In his last
submarine tour, he commissioned Submarine Base, Pearl Harbor in 1920.
He took command of the Pacific Fleet
on 31 December 1941 in ceremonies aboard GRAYLING (SS-209), and hauled
down his flag in MENHADEN (SS-377) in November 1945. He was Chief of Naval
Operations from 1945 to 1947, retiring after that tour. He was awarded
four Distinguished Service Medals and many other decorations from 19 foreign
countries. He died in 1966.
Pennington Hall houses the Ship's Control
and Diving Trainer. It was named in memory of Chief Electrician's Mate
Roscoe C. Pennington who was born in Texas in 1924 and enlisted in 1943.
He made six war patrols in SEA DRAGON (SS-194) and SPIKEFISH (SS-404).
He also served in TILEFISH (SS-307), CUSK (SS-348), CHIVO (SS-341) and
RONQUIL (SS-396). ***His final tour was in THRESHER (SSN-593), as chief
reactor technician, in which he was lost at sea April 10, 1963.
(*** Sid Note - 27
Jan. 2001 ---- I have received info that the loss of Pennington in Scorpion
is in error. The following line from Rindskopf's monograph was replaced
by the text above:
" His two
final tours were in THRESHER (SSN-593), as chief reactor technician, and
in SCORPION (SSN-589) in which he was lost at sea in June 1968."
Street Hall is the Fire Fighting Trainer,
named in honor of Captain George L. Street III. He was born in Virginia
in 1913, graduated from the Naval Academy in the Class of 1937, and from
the second pre-World War II three month class at the Submarine School late
in 1940. He spent three years in GAR (SS-206) completing nine war patrols.
He fitted out TIRANTE (SS-420) as Commanding Officer, made two war patrols
and was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his attack at Quelpart
Island in Korea on 13 April 1945, in which TIRANTE penetrated the harbor
and sank a transport and two escorts with six torpedoes. He was also awarded
the Navy Cross, two Silver Stars, and the ship a Presidential Unit Citation.
After the War, Street commanded REQUIN (SSR-481), a Submarine Division
and Squadron. He retired in 1966.
Update 8 March 2000 -- Newspaper
Notices: Death of Captain Street --- His
Wilkinson Hall was dedicated in 1993
as the home of the ET, RM, and TM Class A Schools. It honors Vice Admiral
Eugene P. Wilkinson, born in 1918, graduated from San Diego State College
in 1938 and from the Submarine School in 1942.
Dennis Wilkinson was the Torpedo Data
Computer operator in DARTER (SS-227) when she and DACE (SS-247) sank three
cruisers and damaged a fourth from the major Japanese Task Force proceeding
toward the epic battle with U.S. Forces attacking the Philippines in October
1944. Darter ran aground and her crew was rescued by DACE, after which
DACE rendered the DARTER unsalvageable by gunfire (torpedoes having exploded
on the reef). Wilkinson completed eight war patrols. Subsequently he served
in MENHADEN (SS-377) to which the DARTER crew had been ordered, RATON (SSR-270),
and CUSK (SS-348), and commanded VOLADOR (SS-490) and SEA ROBIN (SS-407.
He was the commissioning skipper of WAHOO (SS-565), one of the post- war
fast attack class, but it was his selection by Admiral Rickover to command
NAUTILUS (SSN-571) that made him newsworthy. He proved beyond any doubt
the efficacy of nuclear power in submarines, and he showed the way for
all highly qualified officers who followed him in the program. He later
commissioned LONG BEACH (CGN-9), the first nuclear powered surface ship
in the Navy. He was Commander Submarine Force Atlantic Fleet from 1970
to 1972, the last with World War II experience. His final tour was as Deputy
Chief of Naval operations for Submarines (Op02). he retired in 1974. He
was awarded two Bronze Stars, a Silver Star, and the Distinguished Service
Vahsen Hall houses the Damage Control
Wet Trainer which enables damage control teams to practice repair of damaged
piping or equipment under realistic conditions of incoming water under
the watchful eye of experienced instructors.
Captain George Vahsen was born in New
York in 1928, graduated from the Naval Academy in 1952 and from the Submarine
School in 1954. He served in TRIGGER (SS-564), SKIPJACK (SSN-585), ROBERT
E. LEE (SSBN-601), was Executive Officer of THOMAS JEFFERSON (SSBN-618),
and Commanding Officer of SARGO (SSN-583). His final tour of duty was Deputy
Directory of Athletics at the Naval Academy. He suffered a heart attack
and died on 24 June 1980. He was awarded two Legions of Merit.