This story might make you mad and shed a tear all in the same 5 minutes.
The 150th Anniversary of the H.L. Hunley
This past Monday, February 17th, marked the 150th anniversary that the Confederate submarine, the H.L. Hunley, successfully attacked the USS Housatonic off the coast of South Carolina.
The Post and Courier’s columnist Brian Hicks puts readers right along the South Carolina coastline on the night of February 17, 1864 in his story, How the H.L. Hunley became the first submarine to sink an enemy ship.
Previous Hungry for History posts related to the H.L. Hunley
I wanted to share this story on November 8th but tracking down the back-story about the event delayed my posting until now.
I’ll admit that if it wasn’t for local radio DJ, Bear O’Brian at Kissin 99.3, I wouldn’t have known about the day myself. He took just enough time to educate listeners about what happened on that day for members of the 173rd Airborne and share the story behind country music duo Big & Rich’s song, 8th of November. I knew then that I wanted to learn more so I could share with you.
“On November 8th, 1965, the 173rd Airborne Brigade on Operation Hump, War Zone D in Vietnam were ambushed by over 1200 V.C. Forty-eight American soldiers lost their lives that day. Severely wounded and risking his own life, Lawrence Joll, a medic, was the first living black man since the Spanish-American War to receive the United States Medal of Honor for saving so many lives in the midst of battle that day. Our friend, Nialls Harris, retired 25 years, United States Army (the guy who gave Big Kenny his top hat) was one of the wounded who lived. This song is his story. Caught in the action of ‘kill or be killed’ – ‘greater love hath no man to lay down his life for a friend.’
Visit my page History in a Song for the lyrics to 8th of November.
Animals at War: Circus Elephants Clear Bomb Damage
Hamburg, November 1945
ANIMALS AT WAR: CIRCUS ELEPHANTS CLEAR BOMB DAMAGE, HAMBURG, NOVEMBER 1945 © IWM (BU 11451)
Medal of Honor recipient SSgt. Ty Carter
As I looked up additional information about SSgt. Carter I found that we’re both the same age and from the same home town of Spokane, Wa. Staff Sgt. Ty M. Carter, 33, will become the fifth living recipient of the Medal of Honor for actions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“It’s for everybody in the unit who sacrificed and held their own, the soldiers that gave their lives for us to be here today. They and their families deserve it.”
Did you know? There are Three Present Day Variations of the Medal Of Honor?
The aircraft wreckage which was found on a glacier near Anchorage earlier this month is believed to be a plane which went missing in the 1950s with more than 50 people on board, military officials said on Wednesday. Possible human remains have been recovered.
Captain Jamie Dobson, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Joint Prisoners Of War/Missing In Action Accounting Command (JPAC) at the U.S. Department of Defense, said some evidence at the wreckage site is directly linked to a C-124 Globemaster aircraft which disappeared in the region in November 1952.
“Some of the evidence at the wreckage site has been positively correlated to the United States Air Force C-124 Globemaster that crashed in 1952,” Dobson said. “We are still not eliminating other possibilities but we do know at this point that some of the evidence that we are looking at is directly connected to that flight.”
The cargo plane, which was the largest in use by the U.S. Air Force in 1952, went missing on a flight from McChord Air Force Base in Tacoma, Washington, to Elmendorf Air Force Base near Anchorage. Last contact with the plane came as it flew through dense fog over Middleton Island in the Gulf of Alaska, about 160 miles (257 kilometers) southeast of Anchorage.
Based on the location of the incident, it is worth noting that the C-124 was not originally equipped with deicing equipment.
The aircraft was carrying 41 passengers and 11 crew members, including pilot Captain Kenneth J. Duval, 37, of Vallejo, California, and co-pilot Captain Alger M. Cheney, 32, of Lubeck, Maine. The plane’s wreckage was found days later on Mount Gannett with no signs of survivors, but weather made a recovery operation impossible. The aircraft was abandoned and later searches failed to locate the wreckage.
Now nearly 60 years later, the wreckage was discovered on June 10 by the crew of an Alaskan Army National Guard helicopter when it was flying low over an area near Knik, a glacier on the northern end of the Chugach Mountains and about 40 miles (64 kilometers) northeast of Anchorage. The helicopter was on a routine training mission when it discovered the wreckage.
After an additional search-and-rescue mission by Joint Task Force-Alaska and the Alaska National Guard, military officials determined the aircraft was an old military plane. But officials were unable to identify the plane, resulting in the deployment of a specialized investigative team from JPAC.
Dobson said the team collected evidence at the site, including life-support equipment, personal effects, and possible skeletal remains. “We’ve recovered as much evidence from the site as we were able to and needed to to go forward with an identification,” she said. “There is a possibility that further evidence could surface.”
Officials have described the wreckage site as long and linear. “It was thousands of feet. Possibly 2,000 feet (609 meters) long and a couple of hundred feet (meters) wide,” Dobson said.
Over the last decades, dozens of military planes have gone missing in the area of Knik Glacier. “The whole history is riddled with searches for planes that never came home,” Alaska aviation historian Ted Spencer told the Anchorage Daily News earlier this month. “Planes of all types, and they started disappearing when Alaska became an aviation-oriented place. It’s so vast.”
Military personnel examine a debris field on Knik Glacier, about 40 miles northeast of Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by US Army)
Additional reporting by Matt Molnar