Red Headed Stepchild
(The Barrett family memoir of Navy Life)
by Sophie Ruth Meranski with photos


Sophie Barrett and Boyd family maid Netha, Panaama Canal Zone l934 survey ship HANNIBAL days #110 {S}
Clarence Boyd was a young Naval Academy graduate serving on survey ship HANNIBAL l933-l934 when Jack Barrett was Executive officer.The ship spent the late winter, spring, and summer in survey areas on west coast of Panama and Costa Rica, in areas unsurveyed since Spanish government ended more than a hundred years earlier.In the autumn and winter the HANNIBAL returned to Norfolk,Virginia, primarily to permit hydrogrphic engineers to complete smoothdrafts of survey results, and alos for ship overhaul and crew rest and recreation.In l935 they surveyed Gulf of Nicoya, Costa Rica, to find location for a new banana export port.Lieutenant Mervin Halstead was the son of the U.S. Army Governor of Canal Zone l935. Sophie sublet from the Boyds for a time in Balboa, Pacific coast of Canal Zone.The Boyds were natives of Charleston, South Carolina, and very helpfil; when Sophie and John had to re-locate September l938 from Bala Cynwyd, Philadelphia to Coronado, near San diego, California. The Boyds visited the Barretts in Boston about l948. Clarence's wife Maruy Boyd was interested in John's Irish research as she had county Kildare ancestors. Mary sent Naval Academy Alumni magazines that were very helpful in memoir research.Mary's daughter Peggy married Stafford Green, and she and her daughter corresponded with Sophie up to the l980's.HANNIBAL officers went on to distinguished careers in World War II, including Richard G. Visser, who avoided casualties comming destroyer DALY in combat in Aleutians, New Guinea Halmahera regions.He later was on staff of Admiral Richmond Kelly Turner planning Iwo Jima and Okinawa amphibious invasions and preparing for invasion of Japanese home islands, which became uncessary when war ended mid-August l945.
Subject: Sophie and Netha, HANNIBAL
Year: 1934