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

 


picture caption p 39w Branch Hydro 1940 NY

 

Jack was stationed at New York Branch Hydrographic Office September 1939 through June 1940 and replaced retiring Captain Baggaley in charge spring l940. He considered his promotion to Commander an "Irish promotion." as he was scheduled for retirement June l940, but all retirements were cancelled June 1940 because of Woirld Wai II emergency. Charts and weather information were made available not only to Navy ships but to commercial ship captains of all nations, who in turn submitted information the Branch Office collected on winds, weather and hazards to navigation, including wartime mines and military operations, which were forwarded to the Hydrographic office in Washington, where Jack's old friend Gershom Bradford was editor of Naval Hydrographic Office "Notices to Mariners." In the spring of 1941 Jack was consulted by Charles Edey Fay of Connecticutwho had access of Atlantic Insurance Company records of the disappearance of ter five man crew of the New Bedford fishing schooner MARY CELESTE November, 1872. Fay wanted Jack's interpretation of certain navigational notes of the MARY CELESTE near the Azores. He suggested the crew suddenly abandoned ship and got into small boats because they feARED AN EXPLOSION OF ALCOHOL VAPORS FROM CARGO. Gershom Bradford published in American Neptune magazine his theory that waterspouts are frequent near the Azores in November - local severe tornados that draw water and sometimes fish high in the air and threaten small ships. Jack kept four of Fay's letters from around the time the Barretts left for Pearl Harbor mid-l941. The Branch Hydrographic office was in the New York Customs House but had to be relocated - Jack helped obtain an accessible new location where sea captains would continue to find visits convenient, as their information was often useful to the Navy. Jack's former teacher at Revenue Cutter School Captain Dempwolf United States Coast Guard considered the issue important and worte letters supporting many commercial shipping companies in keeping the office at a conveneint location. This was one of many contacts Jack Barrett maintained all his life with friends from Revenue Cutter School l909-l911, which became modern Coast Guard Academy.The motto of the Coast Guiard was "Semper paratus" - Jack applied this motto in his efforts to avert the Pearl Harbor disaster December 7, l941.


 


w1284 p 79 WILLIAM JOSEPH BARRETT letters

 

NOTEBOOK IV-[p91] August 23, 1922 Hotel William-Wallion? Philadelphia [to] Miss Catherine Miley, Dorchester Dearest Catherine, My address will be 508 S. 44th Street instead of Ardmore. I liked Ardmore very much indeed, but it has now served its purpose, and I am moving back where things are more convenient. As for business matters, I have decided not to enter the brass foundry business. First, because to operate as we could, there wouldn't be enough money in it for the effort expended. Second, To secure equipment to operate in production - production machines would require thre times as much capital as we have. Third A study of the costs at the foundry I was to take over, and talks with people intimately associated with the business convinced me that to enter the business would give one the privilege of working for oneself as a moulder and earning a moulder's pay only. I talked with the President of the Ajax Smelting Company, the President of the Metal Manufacturers Association, and the head of a moulding machine manufacturing company, and they showed me by logical argument that under the conditions of competition found in Philadelphia - cutthroat in the brass game- I would save time, money, and worry by staying away. I could go on and show cost data to demonstrate the inadequacy of the charges possible with the competition,but the above is sufficient. But why did it look so favorable and everyone seem so enthusiastic- even people who were in a position to know - until these three men I struck at about the same time and who knew the game from A to Z? Evidently they [the others]did not know that due to the relatively small amount of capital required to enter the business, there are a large number of small shops, -seldom heard of- throughout the city and they are all out for business and will take it at almost any price. The head of Ajax said he did not know of any brass founder who had become rich from the business.While I was willing to dig in, I could not see moulding for the rest of my days. Everything considered, I concluded that it was best to stay out, even at the expense of ridicule, slams, and the like. But it hurt me and still does, for your sake, to give it usp. However, I know now that it's the best thing. Now, as to the future. I shall occupy my time with Crane Packing, who have been good enough to say, 'Come on'. But I have put out lines in other directions and shall hold out until they materialize. Under the circumstances you may do as you think best in this matter of the future. I had hoped this would settle me on my way and expected it would work out so we could be on our way together. I know now that it would not. While this was indeed discouraging,I'm not down yet and don't intend to be.As soon as this disturbance is over with and I get settled, I'll let you know how things stand for the future if you care still.- Most affectionately yours, Bill." {Not long before this Bill had helped Jack withdraw stock proceeds from Fuller stock investment company in May or June 1922. Jack was at sea on the MARBLEHEAD, and the brokerage was slow in paying out for a stock he sold. Bill went around and collected the check, so Jack avoided losing his money in the bankruptcy.][p 66]postmark November 23, 1933 The Shoreham, Washington, D.C. [to] Lieutenant Commander John B. Barrett USS HANNIBAL Navy Yard Norfolk, Virginia Dear Jack, I received the Army-Navy tickets, and they are very good. I got tickets fort the Princeton game and went last Saturday. They were also excellent. Had a nice interlude after the game as Doug Brown a Princeton professor asked us to come to tea after the game at his home- just what you need after sitting out in the cold. Also, the nice box of candy arrived, for which I thank Sophie and you - here again I have no manners for not telling you long ago. I had planned to go to Boston after the Princeton game, but certain changes down here made it necessary to come back right away. I think I'll go up there this weekend after Thanksgiving. This work down here will probably end as far as I'm concerned about December 15. It's sure a merry whirl now, with lots and lots of activity. I want to get down to Norfolk soon and had hoped to before this. Last Saturday was the first I've had off for ages. Some Navy Lieutenant from your ship called me last night. I tried to tyake him to lunch, but he was apparently too pre-occupied. It's time to go to work. Regards to Sophie. Bill" [SOPHIE note: This letter seems to prove that Jack and Sophie went to Norfolk in the fall of 1933. We stayed at the Heart of Ghent Hotel in Norfolk- then lived in an apartment in Portsmouth, where Pa Barrett visited, also Mollie Barrett and Eileen Lane. At the Heart of Ghent we saw Bill Keester and Mrs. Keester of the Coast Guard, and visited them at their home in Norfolk soon after - then we moved to Portsmouth. On Christmas Day 1933 we were at 640 East Seventh Street, South Boston - stayed four days- and then were at Geetters' in New Britain New Years Eve 1933 and New Years Day 1934. We returned to Portsmouth the day after New Years Day. I remember stopping at the Shoreham in Washington to see Bill for lunch on our way down to Norfolk in the Buick in the fall. He had been loaned to the National Recovery Administration NRA by the Met and was offered a full time job in the Roosevelt administration but preferred to return to the Met.There was also a letter from Captain John Nelson at Boston Navy Yard to Jack on the HANNIBAL in Norfolk in the fall of 1933 and he sent regards to me. Captain Nelson was Jack's immediate superior at Boston Naval Shipyard 1932-1933.][p53] to Lieutenant Commander J.B. Barrett USS CLAXTON c/o postmaster New York [from] Milwaukee August 11, 1936 Dear Jack, I've wired you from here today but wasn't quite sure where you'd be, so this letter. I'm on one of the U.S. Steel lake cargo boats - five hundred foot, carrying coal Detroit to Milwaukee this trip. I'm guest of Fred Erb of Detroit. It's been a beautiful trip and a wonderful vacation. Now - to get to the point. It is most important, if you can arrange it, in any way that Mr. Fred Erb get aboard the boat for the trip you are fixing for me. I'd like to have him along, and I know he'd love to go. He is the President of Eaton Erb Company of Detroit, an important subsidiary of the Eaton Manufacturing Company of Cleveland. He is a prominent citizen of Detroit and a great friend of mine.In fact, he is largely responsible for the success of the foundry survey - my first job with the Met, which I think had a lot to do with my getting known in the company. What I'd like to have is that he and I board the CLAXTON at New York Monday August 24, 1936 and go back to Norfolk and Annapolis with you. If at all possible, do this favor for me. If you get an answer before Friday, wire me c/o Metropolitan Life Insurance Company Group Division, General Motors Building, Detroit. I expect to be back there Thursday. I'm returning to New York Monday August 17. See you next week. Regards, Bill" [p34] New York City January 22, 1935 Dear Jack and Sophie, Sophie, if you'll let me know the exact silver you want, I'll get you quotations. My friend says that he can get the real inside at Gorham's, so all I'll have to supply is the patterns and quantities. I see by the papers that you all have arrived at your stations. I was home over the weekend, and the Times of Saturday announced the arrival of the HANNIBAL at Balboa. Everyone is fine at home. They are still talking of how much they enjoyed your visit- Pa is talking so much of Sophie that I think we have just cause to be jealous. Skippy was asking for you and semed to wonder why she didn't get more food from the seat against the wall at the kitchen table. I am enclosing [William] Perry's address [master of Lincoln school] but I know it's too late as Jack always rushes off and writes immediately about state troopers who rescue him in the rain - and why --- Perry's address is 49 Addington Avenue Brookline, Massachusetts, and he always was so fond of "Reddy". Shall I tell him to expect the letter? How is the Canal looking this year? Let's hear, but mostly, let's know how's everything. -Bill" [p 51]"July 1, 1942 Metropolitan Life Insurance Company William J. Barrett, manager Policy Service Bureau [to] Fourteenth Naval District Honolulu Hawaii, Dear Jack, I have been planning for so long to write you a letter that I am going to have to dictate it if I expect to get it to you soon. You will please excuse this. Today Mr. Frank Midkiff came in to see me at your suggestion, and I very much enjoyed my visit with him. He is an extremely well informed individual, and in fact he is well acquainted with a lot of my personal friends. We had all too short a visit. I had hoped that he could stay a little longer, but apparently having such a brief time in this country, he has practically every minute taken. It was interesting to hear that you have been asigned with Admiral Bagley. This must make it very pleasant for you. I was up home recently and found everything in good shape. Pa is holding up very well. In fact, I found him much better than I thought he would be in view of the apparent shocks which he suffered last year. He is naturally weak now and is very restive at the fact that he cannot do what he used to do, but under the circumstances I think he is in pretty good shape. We bought a house in Darien as I felt it was most advisable to hedge against what is to come and to know exactly where I was as far as the rental factor was concerned. This is not as large a piece of land as the other house, but has about an acre. It is a more practical house in many respects. I received your photographs and was very happy to see everyone looking so well. I learned tht your furniture is in Boston, and I understand that it is still on the pier, apparently there being no instructions as to what storage place to put it in. If there is anything I can do, let me know. Best regards to Sophie and John. As ever, Bill."


 


MARBLEHEAD data 1924

 

July 3, l924 JBB reported to Naval Inspector of Machinery , William Cramp and Sons Co Philadelphia in connction with fitting out MARBLEHEAD Arrived Navy Yard 8 AM July 16 few days - return to Cramp. Later short run down Delaware (River) First wek in August go to Rockland for full trials for ten days.eturned to Cramp yard to 30 August. 5 Sept at Navy Yard Philadelphia. Also 11 September. September letter C.C. Plummer (ex Hydrographic Office, friend of Gershom Bradford) Sept 8 . To visit Newport Rhode Island about 16 September. Then about one month New york. Ready about 29 Sep at Navy Yard New York. MARBLEHEAD Commissioned October 10. Nov 5 leave New York. Nov 20 shore patrol Murray Bay Bermuda heading toward Newport News Va Nov 21.- Dec. 2 galley hot - 6 Dec. Southampton England Leave request 8 Dec. to noon Dec 9 JBB address c/o Archer 35 Vartrey Road, Stamford Hill, London. To sea Dec 12 - Marseilles dec 24 -Villefranche Dec. 25 - Algiers Dec. 31 - Jan 6 l925 JBB writes report on shakedown cruise - Jan 7 Funchal madeira - Boston - Board of Inspection and survey at Final trials in February and necessity for completion of annual inventory of Co0nstruction and Repair equipage by 31 March. - March 23, l925 San diego - m- Feb. 18 - had already left boston - April 6-l0 San Francisco leave plus weekend April 11 and 12 Reported back to ship 0035 MONDAY APRIL 13. April 24 Landing force exercise Molokai 27 April shore patrol Merchant and Bethel Streets Honolulu for duration of stay of fleet Reported 10 M April 28 Latter part of may JBB got ships service funds. MARBLEHEAD to fire ShortRange Director Practice off Lahaina (Maui) during week commencing 15 June untukl Thur 18 June. 1 July depart Honolulu. 6 July cross equator 165 degrees 40 minutes west.- July 25 Melbourne - July 31 Tasmania -,Hobart- Launceston-August 5 and 6 New Zealandthroigh Monday August 17th. August 30mShore paTROL TAHITI - GLpagos - Panama =- Guantanamo 8 to 10 Nov - Dec. l925 Boston - 11 Feb. l926 Balboa Schedule of provision issues at Balb CZ MARB 18 f Refrigerated supplies 0600, fresh vegetablesaredry strores. 1300 from store ship "BRIDGE" Vessels of light cruiser division two will use all motor launches for transporting provisions.These boats will be be posted as required. JBB officer in charge of the boats. 0545. June 20, MARblehead (town) Masachusetts Hotel Rock-Mere one night Six dollars . See boston Post story on naming dedication of ship. - 8 June NY bos JBB req dutyt on Eur station for balance of present sea cruise. If not granted, continue present assignment. - 6 & 14 Jul M at bos - 30 S Aid to Eec o Alex Sharp Construction and repair, ships service. - Oc 19 gonaives Bay Haiti O 25 Guan Bay N 6 to 16 Guan Nov 25 to 29 leave Dec. Boston New york weekend D 4-5, 11-12 - Phila D 27 JHAN 6, L927 SAILIONG FOR NICARAGUA - FEBV 27 HAW TILL MARCYH 18MAR 8 LAHAINA - Sailed frt Pearl h 24 Marc 4 PM to Shanghai Ap 2 - at Shanghai 21 April. June 4 Sh detached June 6 Pres. Madison Kobe (acqu. Harams. June 20, Seattle June 27, New york. S-4 23l feet (21'10 l/4") 13 feet one inch draft 876 tons surface, 1092 submerged max fuel oil supply 36,950 gallons normal l9,271 gal four inch 50 caliber guns. Four torpedo tubes, 12 tor 4 officers 4 petty o 30 others Nelseco Co, NY NY Westinghouse motors contractor - US> Government bureaunof Design Commissioned Nov. l9, l9l9


 


77 w1286

 

WYOMING battleship July 1, 1922 Home port New York 562 feet breadth 93 feet 2.5 inches. Draft twenty-eight feet, six inches. Displacement 26,000 tons. Tons per inch immersion 88.5. Two cage masts. Four propellors. Parsons turbine engines. 12 B + W boilers. 34,956 shaft horsepower. General Electric Turbo generating sets. Guns twelve twelve inches guns. Fifty caliber turret, 16' 5" guns. secondary 8 - 3 inch anti-aircraft saluting 46 powder. Two twenty-one inch torpedo tubes submerged. Wardroom officers 25 mess complement. Junior officers 28. warrant officers 12. Chief petty officers 59. Marines 75. other enlisted men 1230.Built by William Cramp + sons. Contract price $4,450,000 Authorized March 3, 1909. Contarct signed October 14, 1909. Keel laid Feb 9, 1910 Ship launched May 25, 1911. Contract date of completion June 14, 1912.


 


1287w p 79

 

MARBLEHEAD light cruiser Wm Camp + sons Auth July 1, 1918. Contract sgined Jan 24, 1919. Keel laid August 4, 1920. Contract date of coompletion January 1, 1922. Wardroom officers 19, warrant officers ten, chief petty officers 29, other enlisted 390. Twelve six inch guns 53 caliber 4 three inch 50 caliber AA secondary. Torpedo tubes aabove water 2- 21 inch twin. Engines Parsons turbo, red. ,gear boilers 12 W. Forster horsepower 90,000 turbine generator Westinghouse. Masts ne pole, one tripod. Length 555 feet, six inches breqadth 55 feet, mean draught 14 feet three inches. displacement 7500 tons. Tons per inch immersion 50.8 Speed 33.7 knots.


 


CAPTIONS CHINAchapter 1931 cave Chefoo w 1288 p 80

 

Sophie traveled on commercial freighter along with Gertrude and Nathalie Rice and Rachel Doughtie when gunboat T-U-L-S-A joined Asiatic Fleet annual maneuvers and gunnery competition late spring -early summer 1931 Sophie used to sing the Navy song "They Wear Clothespins on their noses in North China They wear clothespins on their noses in north China- They wear clothespins on their noses For Chefoo doesn't smell like roses - They wear clothespins on their noses in North China." There were goats immediately outside her window at the Wineglass boarding house in Chefoo, as accomodations were scarce while the Asiatic Fleet was gathered for spring l931 gunnery and maneuvers, in which Jack's gunboat TULSA won the fleet competition - he was gunnery officer aided by Marine Lt. William Paca. Paul Rice was commander of the TULSA.Sophie was grateful to Chaplain William Maguire for finding her a place to stay - Chefoo was crowded because of the big Fleet visit-, -Father Maguire later played a heroic role at Pearl Harbor December 7, l941, though he remained a non-combatant, and the legend he fired a gun at Japanese airplanes is fictitious. He visited the Barretts in Waikiki and described the work of Jack's Overseas Transportation Office in his l943 book, "The Captain Wears a Cross." As a new Navy wife Sophie studied Emily Post's "Etiquette" text carefully. She gave a party to celebrate the TULSA's victory in gunnery. The wife of theExecutive officer complained about being seated too near the candles -she said "Candlelight does not become me." Rachel Claude Doughtie used to tell a tale of a visitor who came to see her mother's Maryland family for the weekend and stayed for forty years.Sophie Barrett and Gertrude Rice took a small Chinese rowboat to shore in Weihaiwe to buy fine teasets ornamented with pewter.They nearly were stranded, with difficulty returning to their southbound British freighter. -p 8 w62 popular tourist cave Shantung peninsula near Chefoo China summer 1931 Sophie-Along with her friends Gertrude and Nathalie Rice and Rachel Doughtie - of the very few women family members with gunboat TULSA officers, Sophie traveled south spring l931 on a British freighter when the TULSA went to Asiaitic fleet gunnery and annual fleet exercises.Sophie nearly was stranded in Wehai-Wei after a shopping expedition. She had a pleasant picnic with Gertrude and Paul Rice near Chefoo and visited a popular cave near this photo.She stayed at Wineglass Boarding house, arranged by Chaplain Wiilliam Maguire, later famous for heroism at Pearl Harbor December 7, l941.When Jack helped Fleet Chaplain Maguire with transportation needs of Navy families,he said it was "bread on the water", as Chaplain Maguire had helped Sophie at Chefoo l93l. At Shanghai Sophie met Maimie and Mickey Ashley, Cockeye the Naval Tailor, Ah. Sing Ships' Chandler and other friends of Jacks.She bought Wei-hai-wei pottery-pewter tea set on trip.


 


CHINAchapter T-R-U-X-T-U-N & T-U-L-S-A Paul Rice letter, Sophie,Yangtze patrol w1289 p 80

 

p. 202ff of notebook Sophie Barrett notebook one p. 203;- When JACK WAS IN Nanking he met HaRRIET COGSWELL- SHE WAS "QUEEN OF THE MAY" AT MOUNT HOLYOKE IN 1922 AND WAS TEACHING AT GIN-Ling college, Nanking, China. When he happened to mention that his wife worked at Macy's, she said her sister worked at Macy's also.When she told Jack she was a Mount Holyoke graduate, he told her I had attended Mount Holyoke College too.I remember what a strikingly beautiful May queen she was. Inset on p. l96 Jack met about all my family on this occasion. This was probably the only time Jack met my oldest brother Harry, who died of pneumonia Dec. l93l while we were in China, leaving two children, Arthur and Pearl.Harry was in the mattress and furniture business with Al Deutch, who was married to his sister-in-law Minnie Taylor.Harry's wife Sade hasd two other sisters Eva and Marion Taylor. It may clarify my later account to mention that it was Sade's sister Marion, whom we saw in Brooklyn around l940 and in San Francisco in 1947. Eva Taylor lost her fiance, who died just before they were to be married.She was a nurse and worked at Hartford Mount Sinai hospital.p. 204---I was concerned on not hearing from Jack, but he sent a radio message - "Hold everything as is - letter follows." I had the "Rice and fish" card framed and put in on my wall.In his letter he explained that the heat and humidity bothered his sinuses- that his failure to write was due largely to the climate of the Philippines, and that the climate and constant movement of the ship in Philippine waters and in Chinese seas prompted him to refrain from inviting me to join him.He also said that he had applied for duty on the Yangtze River Patrol in China- a job he really wanted-and thaT IF HE got it, he knew of no place I could live safely and comfortably because the Chinese War Lords were always shooting at each other's troops and ships.So the "fish and rice" card, his honest letter, and a few little inexpensive silver rings fashioned in Zamboanga quieted my anxiety.An old friend Mr. Emanuel Lyons took me to Schraft's for Thanksgiving dinner (l929) and also took me to theater and dinner once a week.He knew Jack - was one of the very few who knew about the quick marriage ceremony - and did his best to give me some ppleasant evenings.Oner or two nights a week I took Macy's Executive Training course.I learned to play bridge and often spent the evening playing cards with Anne and Ivan and young Harold Nelson.I read books, but the evenings and Sundays were dull. A Yangtze river patrol boat which he could command would be more interesting to him as he could navigate thousands of miles up the river to many Chinese cities. However, in may l930 he went from the destroyer TRUXTUN to the gunboat TULSA stationed at Tientsin, North China. He was briefly Executive Officer until more senior Leonard Doughty arrived, but most of the time he was gunnery oficer l930-31, winning the Asiatic Fleet annual gunnery competition spring-summer l931. This helped his promotion to Lieutenant Commander at the end of l931 after taking physical and written exams. Commander Paul Rice and Marines under William W. Paca contributed to the gunnery success.Jack discussed gunnery methods at Peking with his Revenue Cutter School friend William Rupertus, who was at Peking several years in Marines. Since the TULSA spent almost all of the time at dock in Tientsin on the Hai Ho River or when water was low thirty-five miles east at the dock at Taku Bar, Jack was able to make inquiry about having me join him in Tientsin.An old Navy friend of Jack's, whom I had met in New York,E.V. W. Keene was in charge of dependents' transportation, and when I went to see him June 23, l930,he was most kind and cooperative and told me he would look into transportation for me and would arrange for my typhoid and cholera shots and for my smallpox vaccination.At first he considered the Army transport GRANT going to Manila and advised Jack to investigate what transportation would be available from Manila to Chingwangtao.By July 25 Captain Keene and Jack had settled on Navy transport HENDERSON leaving Hampton Road, Virginia on August 20, l930 and arriving at Chingwangtao November 13, l930.I saw Captain Keene on July 25 and August 6. Among other things he gave me my transportation on the HENDERSON from Hampton Roads Virginiia to Chingwangtao, China, gave me rail transportation from New York to Hampton Road Virginiia by Pullman sleeper the night of August 18, l930 - made sure I had all my shots and vaccination and gave me a special passport for travel in China and Japan.When I gave Macy's two wees notice that I was leaving for China they gave me one hundred (end p. 205)--PAUL RICE letter On February l0,l970 a letter came from Paul Rice Captain USN who was with us on the TULSA in Tientsin l930-3l, visited Panama in l935 & lived in Waikiki l94l when the war strurck until February l942."Dear John, As you surmise,Sexton was a classmate pf mone, class of l909 at the aval Academy. Captain Samuel Wil;der King was a classmate-= knew him very well.He relieved me of command of the USS SAMAR at Hankow,China in June,l9l5. We had no Chaplain on the TULSA. As I remember the anchorage at the entrance of the Hai Ho River was called Tangku (note by Sophie M. Barrett"Jack & I sailed from Tangku to Japan on the Chowan Maru.Tangku is where the Japanese soldiers crossed their swords on my chest when I started to the wrong dock where a Japanese Army troop ship was next to the passengership dock.")The TULSA used oil-not coal.I spent about three years on the Yangtze- had command of the SAMAR & navigated it to Ichang one thousand miles up the river.Navigation on the river was similar to that on the Mississippi,I suppose.Duringthe summer floods good sized ships could navigate to Hankow.Of course Gertrude & I would be glad to try to identify pictures.Mrs. Rice says she & Nathalie met your uncle Bill in New York City in l942 (but did not meet your aunt Virginia)).Please give our regards to your mother.Sincerely, Paul H. Rice.


 


MARBLEHEAD w p 79 from 57w1099

 

s second cousin Robert Fahrbach & Fahrbach's father Emil Fahrbach,they arrived under radio silence in Hawaii April l5,l925, when the MARBLEHEAD took part in the very important war games in which the attacking "Blue" Forces defeated the defending "Black" Forces & captured the Hawaiian Islands.Admiral MacDonald in collaboration with the Army,had the defense of the Hawaiian Islands.The story is well told in the New York Times article headed "MARBLEHEAD at Hawaii War Maneuvers",Sunday,May l0,l925.Story of the swift triumph of Blue Forces on Hawaiian Defenses forced to anchor because the capital ships could enter Pearl Harbor only with difficulty because of the lack of anchorage space inside.After the War Games many departed with General Hines including Major General Neville, who commanded the Blue Mai??col Forces (some material illegible will be checked against original article when available)the senior Black umpire,a general & Lieutenant Colonel Kruger,who was the chief Army assistant to Admiral Coontz & General Hines.Several thousand persons went to the pierdecorating the officers & other passengers with leis.The ship was tied to the pier with paper streamers that cracked when the ship pulled away to the strains of "Aloha Oe" & other Hawaiian tunes.252Major General Lewis,the Hawaiian Department Commander,declined to comment on the statement attributed to Chairman Butler of the House Naval (Appropriations) Committee (Philadelphia Congressman & father of the great Marine general Smedley Butler) to the effect that appropriations would be asked to make Hawaii the strongest military outpost in the world.The General admitted that there are serious deficiencies in the defenses as they exist.General Lewsis said,"I am naturally very much interested in any proposal for developing the defeses of Hawaii as they have constituted my most earnest study since my arrival in the Territory.I canassure you that it has been for some time the conservative opinion of our trained officers that these defenses are insufficient even for a reasonable security against unfortunate eventualities.And I concur in that opinion." General Lewis was asked to comment on the prevalent belief that Army garrison here should be from five to ten thousand men stronger than at present,that the air forces should be greatly increased & provided with modern equipment to enazble the Army to resist successfully such landing as that simulated in the recent maneuvers- that there should be additional modern eighteen inch guns in the Coast Defenses-that the Construction program has been seriously neglected & that the local naval protection in the form of submarines & mines is seriously deficient. Some officers wanted on hundred thousand men.The General replied that there were serious shortages in all of these respects.The detailsfrom the flagship Pennsylvania to the New York Times,April 27,l925:Now that the struggle is ended between the Blues & the Blacks for the control of the Island of Oahu-keystone in the Hawaiian Arch of the American Structure of National Defence, the story of the campaign plan of the pictors & vanquished may be told (Jack Barrett was on the MARBLEHEAD of the victors,the Blue Forces-SMB note)- it is clearly evident 253 it is evident from the progress of this major peacetime conflict that the Naval & Marines forces comprising the Blues would now be camping in Pearl Harbor after having taken the Island by direct assault in today's operation.The mission of the Blues was to recover from the Blacks possession of Honolulu & Pearl Harbor as Naval Operating Bases.That mission was certain of achievement when the umpires called a halt on the contest.The action of the umpires was founded in the conviction that the Blue forces had been able to land & advance on the north shore of Oahu,- a superior military force of Marine Sl...? troops & maneuver them in a position where the Blacks were unable to halt or defeat the advance of the khaki-clad invaders.The defeat of the Blacks does not mean that the Hawaiian Islands are not strongly defended.Both Nature & Washingtton with liberal hands have contributed toward the defense of the Islands against attack by enemy forces.The mountain ranges along the east & most of the west coast of Oahu are absolutely impossible for armed forces landing along these particular stretches of the shoreland.After a twelve day voyage of 2600 miles fromSan Francisco to the Hawaiian group, the Blue Fleet arrived off the northern & southwestern coasts of Oahu at midnight of April 26.The armada traveled in special screening formation en route to protect the sixteen vessels of the Fleet train (constructively representing transports) against enemy submarine attack. This formation consisted of a series of concentric circles of warships.The battleships were in the center,with the train of transports.Around the battleships steamed the smart & speeding destroyers.Beyon the -254-steamed the light cruisers (JBB in MARBLEHEAD-SMB note)& beyond that were the submarines-the furthermost outpost of the Fleet formation,which was 42 miles in diameter.Not a mishap ?marred the voyage.All ships that left San Francisco Harbor on April l5 in an aggregation of one hundred twenty-seven of all types of warshipsarrived at their appointed positions at the Islands of Oahu & Molokai in safety & good condition.The battleship MARYLAND,which left Puget Sound at a later date joined the main body of the battle fleet several hundred miles north of Oahu.Somewhere out in the Pacific the Blue Scouting Fleet headed by the battleship WYOMING was detached from the main formation & sent ahead so as to be able to carry out the operation of establishing an air base on the island of Molokai April 25, two days before the scheduled of Admiral Robinson for the main expedition attack on Oahu.The rest of the fleet continued on a direct route to Kaena Point at the northwestern corner of Oahu,maneuvering from day to day in th execution of Battle Problems.Radio silence was established on the seond day out from San Francisco & was not lifted until arrival of thew vessels within sight of Diamond Head late this afternoon after the execution of the mission involved in the War Games.At twelve o'clock last night when the bulk of the main battle fleet moved into position off the northern coast of Oahu,mighty searchlights from the interior & along the northern coast flashed seaward.Under cover of darkness the vessels were in position for the attack,six miles out when several minutes after midnight a bombardment of the beach was inaugurated preliminary to the landing 255--#39-#39 MARBLEHEAD P.255 preliminary to the landing of the first wave of Marines at twelve o'clock this morning,exactly twelve hours after the bombardment began.>>During these twelve hours the main forcemade the landing on the north coast.Some of the battleships-0with destroywes were detached & sent around to the southwestern coast to carry to carry out a similar landing of Marines- this was only a secondary operation.The attack on the north was the primary one.Meanwhile the Scouting Fleet under the command of Vice ADMIRAL MCKEAN WHICH HAD GONE WITH THE AIRCRAFT carrier LANGLEY to establish a temporary air base at Molokai Islandslipped westward to the southern coast of Oahu & endeavored to delude the Blacks into the belief that a landing force was about to be put into east of Diamond Head.It was a successful manoeuvre & in combination with the secondary landing of the Marines on the southwest coast cau8sed the Blacks to think that the main landing was being made on the south coast.In this assumption the blacks made a fatal mistake& were not in a position to meet the sho ck of the primary landing of the expeditionary force when it was shoved forward on the north coast.Ideal weather conditions favored the Blues when it (the Blue Force) emerged from the long spell of radio silence & lowered the boats in which the Marines were sent through the surf to the beach.While the heavens sparkled with thousands of starts,the region between shore & coast was blanketed with that particular form of tropical semi=mist & near rain which Americans in Hawaii have come to regard as 'liquid sunshine'.It was difficult for the powerful searchlights of the Blacks to distinguish the faint shadows of the hulls (hulks?)in the darkness that enveleoped the arrival of the Fleet.The Fleet had been darkened & traveled with 256 no lights showing above decks long before reaching Oahu.When morning broke magnificiently over the island,the main section of the expeditionary force began landingon the northern & southwestern coasts,& feinting operations were progressing east of Diamond Head.On the north coast especially where no ships had stood the night before,morning discllosed the presence of a strong naval force.The big guns of seven dreadnaughts were trained on the shore.Beyond them were the transports between boats filled with Marines,& destroyers were protecting the formation against submarine attack while seaplanes were being catapulted from the decks of battleships & spinning off inbto the air for reconhnaisdance of the enemy positions ashore.The sea was as smooth as glass & the breakers not as heavy as usual over the coral reefs.The first wave of Marines sent ashore were met with heavy machinegun attack &suffered heavy casualties,but the defense cordon of Blacks on the north coast was weak & the second wave were pused through so far that the succeeding waves had soon charged the beachhead & soon had driven six miles from the beach.The operation was accompanied by a spectacular aircraft operation in which there were thrilling battles between enemy bombing & fighting planes & the fighting planes & scouters of the Fleet.Had not the Blues completely outgunned the Blacks in the north of the principal landing shore,it would have been difficult for the invader to have made such easy headway in pushing their Marines forward in the northern coast.Part of the time the Fleet steamed with darkened lights.& for nearly ten days it steamed the Pacific with all wireless switches pulled so as to ensure complete radio silence.Not a single letter was flashed by radio from any of the ships.The radio silence was a complete success-a real simulation of actual war conditions as near as it could be achieved in time of peace.Should the United States as a nation ever be faced with the problem of defending Oahu in time of war,it would be infinitely better257 On ther return trip In the Galapagos Islands they were surprised to see a large number of seals-hundreds of them.A rather cold current runs through them,& it seems strange to see the seals where only tropical animals would be expected.But the seals were there.p260 MARBLEHEAD itinerary departed Philadelphia l5 September l924 - arr.Sep l6 Newport RI dep.l7 Sept. -arr.l8 Sep.Navy Yard,New York dep.5 November-Arr.. 7 November Bermuda Islands dep Nov 2l arr. 23 Nov.Navy yard Norfolk Virginia dep. 28 Nov.-arr.6 December Southampton England dep 12 Dec. -arr. l7 DecMarseilles France dep 24 Dec.-arr.24 Dec Villefranche France dep 25 Dec - arr. 27 Dec. Algiers,Algeria dep.31 Decem-1924-arr. 1 January l925 Gibraltar dep. 5 Jan- arr. 7 Jan. Funchal, Madeira dep.9 January -arr. l7 Jan. Navy Yard Boston dep l0 February -arr. l0 Feb. Boston Light dep.l3 Feb. -arriv l8 Feb. Hampton Roads Virginia dep. l9 Feb.- 23 Feb. arr.Colon,CaNAL ZONE DEP 23 FEB.- arr. 23 Feb Panama Bay dep 25 Feb. arr. 12 March San Diego California dep l6 March arrive l7 March San Pedro Cal.depart 3 April - arr. 5 April San Francisco California dep. 15 April -arr. 25 April Molokai, Territory of Hawaii Honolulu Territory of Hawaii -#40-25 Apr.l925 arr. Molokai Territoy of Hawaii dep. 25 Apr. -arr .27 Apr.Honolulu dep 30 Apr.-arr. 30 Apr. Pearl Harbor dep l May - arr. 1 May Honolulu dep.7 May - arr.9 May Lahaina,Maui dep.28 May-arr. 29 May Hilo,island of Hawaii dep.29 May - arr. 1 June Honolulu dep. l Jun-arr. 1 June Pearl Harbor dep 2 Jun -arr. 2 Jun Lahaina dep 6 June- arr. 6 June Honolulyu dep.l5 June -& l July - crossed equator 6 July l925 - arr.l0 July Pago Pago Samoa dep.11 Jul -arr. 23 Jul Melbourne, Victoria, Australiadep 4 August - arr. 5 August Hobart Tasmania dep 7 Augu -arr. 11 Aug Wellington New Zealand dep.24 Aug- arr 30Aug..Pago Pago Samoa dep 3 September -arr. 8 September Papeetee Tahiti dep.ll Sep -arr. 22 Sep Galapagos Islands, Ecuador dep 24 Sep-arr.25 Sep Balboa Canal Zone dep 2 October -arr. October 4 Guantanamo Bay, Cuba dep -dep 12 Oct-arr. 12 Oct Gonaives Gulf Haiti dep. l6 Oct.-arr.l6 Oct. Guantanamo Bay Cuba dep.26 Oct.- arr.26 Oct. Gonaives Haiti dep. 30 Oct. -arr.30 Oct. Gonaives Gulf Haitidep 2 Nov- arr. 2 Nov Guantanamo Bay Cuba dep.20 November arr. 23 Nov Hampton Roads Virginia dep ? - arr30 Nov.North river New York dep30 Nov.- arr. 1 December Navy Yard Boston dep 8 January l926-arr. 9 Jan Hampton Roads Virginia dep. 10 Ja. page 262- ... arrived Bluefields Nicaragua ll January l927 - Puerto Caebas on l3 January. Jack Barrett received ribbons in l927 for being in combat areas in Nicaragua in January & Shanghai China April-June during the civil war there. He was scheduled to lead a landing force at Bluefields, but the MARBLEHEAD was shifted to the Pacific. He encountered marine writer John Thomason this time in Nicaragua & later l943 arranged his transportation to the mainland.In February in Honolulu he receieved a letter from "Chesty" Puller - who later commanded Maines in the Inchon Korea landing September, l950 - the letter stolen l993 concerned an informal evening party.- continuing chronology: MARBLEHEAD arrivewd Puerto Cabezas Jan. l3, l927 left Nicaragua 29 January = spent some tiome in honolullu February-March departed 24 March to make record eight & a half day cruise to Shanghai with hundreds of Marines, who came under command of Gen. Smedley Butler, survivor of the Boxer rebellion in Peking l900. Jack admired Butler, who was very sucessful in China l927-9 & was slated to become Marine commandant but for the personal animosity of Herbert Hoover, who had worked in the Kailin mining operaztions in North China & object to remarks Butler had made condemning the dictatorial actions of Benito Mussolini.Butler in l930's retirement condemned over-use of Marines to serve commercial interests in foreign countries where national security was not threatened. Chaing-kai shek took the offensive against the communists at Shanghai speing l927, & both sides were strongly anti=foreigner & business interested were threated. Jack had a number of friends from l927 at Standard Oil co. Shanghai.He was detached June 4 at Shanghia & traveled Tokyo to Seattle onthe same ship as General Leonard Wood, retired l920's US> governor of the Philippines.Jack traveled by rail from Seattle to his home in Boston & next duty in New York June l927-l929. -#56-# 56 Fradd letter Marblehead l927 Shanghai Lactoris page M 259 responded magnificently to our letters of inquir: John F. Fradd wrote from Florida: Your two very nice letters awakened nostalgic memories of the first cruise I ever had in my thirty-five years in the Navy.Whenever MARBLEHEAD sailors get together,all we talk about is our cruise to China & back,which covered nineteen months.The MARBLEHEAD was my first ship.I joined her in June of l926 & served four years in her.I can't vouch for the correctness of dates,& l927 was a long time ago. You mentioned that Jack Barrett was mess treasurer, & so was I shortly afterward.I had the job for about three months during our cruise up the Yangtze River & after. I recall the mess bill at that time was thirty dollars a month. It was near Christmas time in l926 when we returned to Boston, her home port, from Guantanamo,Cuba.In January l927 we were ordered to proceed toNorfolk,& load our torpedoes & two scout planes & continue on to Nicaragua,where trouble was brewing.We put a company of our landing force ashore to join our Marines, who were protecting the holdinhs og United Fruit company from some bandit who was trying to start an uprising. The name of the place was Puerto Cabezas on the east coast.Our flagship was the USS RICHMOND, another six inch gun cruiser. We were ordered to Pearl Harbor.At the time very few of us knew about what was going on in China.We spent a month or so in the Hawaii area practicing gunnery, torpedoes,& operations,-when suddenly we were ordered to Shanghai,China.I can recall returning from libery with Lieutenant Close to find the navigator & chief engineer figuring out how fast we could make the trip without running out of fuel. M260. We got under way in the morning & completed the (Shanghai) run in the shortest time ever up to that time (eight & a half days).Our sister ship the CINCINNATI gad sime propellor trouble & arrived twenty-four hours later.At this point we were getting reports of civil war in China, & the names of Chiang kai-shek & Chaing Tso-lin & (Michael) Borodin were in the newsWe also received a report of the Communist attack on the "foreign" embassies in Nanking,in which the USS NOAH was involved.When we arrived at Shanghai,the Whangpoa river near town was loaded with ships, so we went downstream to the juncture of the Whangpoa & Yangtze & anchored for a week or so.While there we witnessed the first naval battle many of us had ever seen. The Wonson fort at the juncture of the two rivers was held by South Chinese forces & was to be attacked by the North Chinese fleet.The commander of the fort came aboard to ask if we would move off to an anchorage to the west,as he was expecting an attack by the northern forces & did not want us in the way. So we moved.Sure enough,at 11:30 Saturday morning four gunboats appeared,standing upriver right after our Saturday inspection.They opened fire on the fort,which returned the fire.The accuracy of both left much to be desired,but we had to admire the tactics of the commander of the ships afloat.It happened an English warship was anchored in the stream-& the Northern commander took full advantage of this fact.His ship would steam within range of the fort,fire & then swing around in columns behind the English warship while they reloaded their guns. this continued for a hour, until a burst from the fort M 261 appeared to hit the bridge of the leading gunboat.This signalled the end of the battle.Shortly after this we steamed up river to just south of Shanghai & moved to the Standard Oil docks.In the city the Southern forces had taken Shanghai & moved north,although barbed wire entanglements & bunkers were still in place on the streets.The city quickly returned to normal,but brigands were active. While on liberty,most of our officers were robbed at one time or another.I relieved "Shorty" Milner as head of the baseball team& MARBLEHEAD not only won the Shanghai league championship but had the opportunity of playing with five other teams including the Japanese. One of these was the team representing Japan in the eastern Olympics.We also played later for the championship of the Phillippines.The next episode concerned our trip up the Yangtze River to Nanking. The CINCINNATI went up first for a stay of a month,& we followed later.She was fired on by small arms from the banks & an officer was wounded,so we placed boiler plate around the bridge & other exposed positions for protection- nobody fired at us, but all guns were at the ready.The navigator measured the fall of the river every morning so we would know when we had to return down river in order to cross over some sand bars safely.Otherwise we would have had to remain upstream for months before the river rose azgain.The ship visited Tsingtao & Chingwantao later. In July a number of us took a trip to Peking.We got there aboard a Chinese troop train.Upon arrival we saw an armored train furnished by the Japanese & tried to take snapshots of it,-but guards with fixed bayonets prevented that. I did ask one of the M262 guards if I could take his picture-& he was quite pleased- we got good pictures of him -& the train! (notes on photos).- John E Fradd, Rear Admiral USN Retired."-#58 -#58 Dahlquist MARBLEHEAD l927 Lactoris #58 Commander Phil Dahlquist in commentary on Admiral Fradd's letter wrote from Eugene Oregon: "The MARBLEHEAD did not stop at Nanking, as he intimated but went on up the Yangtze River for another couple of hundred miles to Hankow.I'm sure he would recall this if he remembered all the golf he played on the course there,which was surrounded by a ten foot high (or higher) stone wall. It wasn't unusual to hear shots on the other side of the wall as we played.I think one of the sad days of that era was when "Eva" Brant was lost overboard.He was an excellent young oficer & probably one of the most popular on board. Brant went back to the after part of the ship-which was very low.The seas were coming up from astern & breaking over the deck very heavily.Brant went out to help an enlisted man & held the man with a scissors hold in his legs until others could pull him back-but a following sea washed Brant overboard.It was a very heroic act on Brant's part & typical of what one would have expected of such a man.On our trip to Australia we stopped off at Samoa going & coming.I was swimming in at the dock & missed the last boat back to the MARBLEHEAD.I waited,& the Captain's gig came in fromthe MARBLEHEAD to pick up a guest for dinner with the Captain.He was a Samoan gentleman of about fifty years.He seemed very dignified & wore a black dinner jacket,black tie, & studs in his shirt. Instead of trousers he wore a sort of wrap-around garment of excellent quality material-very neatly pressed.coming down to his kneecaps.Riding out to the ship I said I had been at a nautical school at Norfolk about three years before, & we had a Samoan classmate who acquitted himself very well- he had graduated well up in his class & had been well thought of.The man was Chief of Police in American Samoa, & we was very pleased by my story,as the boy was his son.It was the l927 Nanking incident that took the MARBLEHEAD to China in the first place.Trouble had been anticipated aapparently-& we were already out as far as Honolulu on a standby basis.Then the Nanking thing happened,& we went out the rest of the way.I think the NOAH was in on it. The american destroyer NOAH had been sent up to Nanking on a plea from some missionares who were in danger from bandits overrunning the area.The American destroyer skipper went over to call on his counterpart on an English destroyer - they agreed & laid down a barrage above the mission-then the missionaries could come out & down to the dock under cover of the barrage.This was successful,& the destroyer took them to safety.In April l97l Rear Admiral James McNally wrote,"I cannot add too much to your wonderful job of research work.Jack loved papers & kept all kinds of papers & notes.That in fact is one of the strongest memories I have of him.I remember sitting in his stateroom & he pouring through a wicker hamper full of notes to locate a paper that would settled a wardroom argument. Jack was very thoughtful & kind to us junior officers.Phillips,Brant,Van Nagell,Florence, & McNally all reported to the MARBLEHEAD azt Pearl Harbor after Naval academy graduation l925. I notice you have not mentioned John E.Florence.He lives in Charleston, South Carolina. You will have to excuse this new automatic typewriter. It writes faster than I can think, & it cannot spell.We all made the Australian cruise together.Then after leave & recreation in New York after we got back we went to the West Indies- Guantanamo & Haiti. I served on the MARBLEHEAD 23 June l925 to 25 June l926. I was first division junior officer. In that job I had lots of contact with John (Jack).John read a lot & had a good grasp of what was going on in the world.Some of his statements were prophetic.(Executive officer) Commander Alex Sharp would ask,"What has the saber-rattler to say today?" The next contact I had with John was at Pearl.Marjorie & I called on you-young John was only a baby.I was stationed at the Navy Yard & was machinery-electrical planning officer.After the attack I became the Salvage Planning officer & was in charge of preparing the plans for raising & repairing the sunken ships.John helped me get the family off to Long Beach,California.Later he assigned me transportation so I could go to Newport News Virginia to fit out & be chief engineer of p.266M YORKTOWN. The "Fighting Lady" was another wonderful ship just like the MARBLEHEAD.#57-#57 Phillips letter MARBLEHEAD l925Lactoris #57 Rear Admiral George L.Phillips of Maine wrote: Dear Mrs. Barrett,I well remember your husband Jack (sometimes known as "Red") from the MARBLEHEAD,which I joined in June,l925 & served in until July l926. I used to stand watches with him in station for several months until I qualified as a top watch stander.I remember the trip he arranged with a New Zealand friend of his (Haskell Anderson of Wellington & Napier) for a party (of which I was one) to spend a few days in Napier.NZ.I believe that Jack & the New Zealander had met in Newport News Virginia at the end of World War I when the latter was on his way home was on his way home from service in Europe (wounded at Gallipoli).We had a splendid cruise to Australia & New Zealand & a wonderful voyage through the south Pacific islands.I remember seeing Jack at Pearl Harbor in late l944 when I was on my way out to Ulithi for the attack on Iwo Jima & Okinawa.I called on him at his office & well remember being at your house for dinner some time in November or December,l944. I brought out a jug of maple syrup to give you.My wife came from Australia where I met her on the cruise in l925.We were married in Montreal,Canada in l928, & Jack was one of two sponsors for her entry permit into the United States.The other was Frank Maeihle (spell?) who was also on the MARBLEHEAD with Jack.I was in ooccasional touch with Capta Shackford until


 

 

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