Happy Boxing Day, all.
In doing my research for the USS New York article I came across a trove of material relating to the dreadnoughts, the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and the political/social milieu in which these ships were built and then served in the Great War. I intend to write more about all this when the 100th anniversary of the review comes around two short years from today, but in the meantime I wanted to share this stunning image of the USS Arizona taken in the Hudson River on December 26, 1918. There had been so many parades and ceremonies in the 5-6 weeks after the Armistice, but the NYC Naval Review of 1918 stood out. There were nearly a dozen dreadnoughts and scores of accompanying others ships in New York Harbor. There was a dress parade as well.
Woodrow Wilson was not in attendance because by this time he was already in Paris. These same ships of the review had escorted him there just two weeks earlier. His Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels watched the review from the presidential yacht, the Mayflower. Daniels’s assistant, Franklin D. Roosevelt, was there too, watching from the Aztec. With his love of the Navy there was no way FDR would have missed something like this. The above photo is so great because Assistant Naval Secretary Franklin Roosevelt had attended the laying of the Arizona’s keel just a few years earlier. Obviously no one could have known at the time, but this ship went down at Pearl Harbor on another December day decades after this photo was taken.
(image by Paul Thompson via National Archives)