For Oct 20th 2016–This past week on October 13th 1775 the U.S. Navy was founded. The Continental Congress voted to fit out two sailing vessels, armed with ten carriage guns, as well as swivel guns, and manned by crews of eighty, and to send them out on a cruise of three months to intercept transports carrying munitions and stores to the British army in America.
This was the original legislation out of which the Continental Navy grew and as such constitutes the birth certificate of the Navy. What most folks do not know is that when the motion came to the floor for debate, Samuel Chase, of Maryland, attacked it, saying it was “the maddest Idea in the World to think of building an American Fleet.” Fortunately, on 5 October, Congress received intelligence of two English brigs, unarmed and without convoy, laden with munitions, leaving England bound for Quebec. Congress immediately appointed a committee to consider how to take advantage of this opportunity. Its members were all New Englanders and all ardent supporters of a navy.
They recommended first that the governments of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut be asked to dispatch armed vessels to lay in wait to intercept the munitions ships; next they outlined a plan for the equipping by Congress of two armed vessels to cruise to the eastward to intercept any ships bearing supplies to the British army.
During the war our Navy took nearly 200 British vessels into captivity, contributing to the demoralization of the enemy and forcing the British to divert warships to protect convoys and trade routes. In addition, the navy provoked diplomatic crises that helped bring France into the war against Great Britain. The Continental Navy began the proud tradition carried on today by our United States Navy, and whose birthday we celebrate each year in October. We also honor our Navy veterans, John Fields and Stan Mueller come to mind.
Speaking of our veterans we have three important events on the horizon in November. As Veteran’s Day approaches there will be the placing of flags, our annual High School event, and the annual Fairfax Parade. I will be providing details as those events grow closer. Before then we have the Main Street Treats, sponsored by the Hominy Chamber of Commerce and supported by the American Legion Auxiliary and Hut. It will be on Main Street 31 October at 6 PM. Be sure and come by our table.
If you are a veteran drop by the Hut this evening for our meeting at 7 PM. Chef Sebert usually has a cake and coffee to celebrate a birthday or two. It is a great bunch to get to know so come on in. You can also get up to speed on all activities.
Our regular meetings are the 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month. (The next one after this evening 3rd and 17th of November). The Monday morning Koffee Klatch meetings for October Monday’s are still scheduled for biscuits and gravy and always a cup of Joe (coffee to the civilians). Keep your eye on the weather in case things have to be postponed. If you are a veteran come on by. If you have a good story it may end up in print. Also keep up with us at website “americanlegion142.org”.