Retrograde Waters

Hello. I'm Rose, 20-something Nebraskan. If you want to know more feel free to ask, I'm not going to waste space here.
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marielikestodraw:

congressarchives:

Congress in the Archives will feature monthly staff posts on our blog. Today’s post comes from Center archivist Kris Wilhelm.

It was a dark and stormy night off the coast of New Jersey on April 3, 1933. The captain of the Navy’s dirigible, USS Akron, had altered course several times to avoid ominous weather. By 12:30 am, the Akron was being buffeted by violent updrafts and downdrafts that tore away control cables and forced her into surf that ripped off her lower fin. Without adequate means to navigate the enormous vessel, she was doomed. Only 3 of the airship’s 77 officers and men survived the crash.

The loss of the USS Akron prompted Congress to create the Joint Committee to Investigate Dirigible Disasters. The 10-member panel studied the causes of this and other wrecks as well as the utility and viability of dirigibles for military purposes. Although the dearth of survivors among the Akron’s crew made it difficult for the committee to assess contradictory eyewitness accounts; nevertheless, the records of the disaster tell a chilling tale of the tragic end to a mighty airship.

Surreal Detail of the Week: Senator Hamilton Kean (R-NJ) was a member of the Joint Committee to Investigate Dirigible Disasters. His grandson, Tom Kean, co-chaired the 9/11 Commission with Lee Hamilton.

Photograph of the USS Akron “Nose section being attached to nearly completed framework,” 1933, Records of the Joint Committees of Congress

Photograph of the USS Akron “Ready to walk USS Akron out of Goodyear-Zeppelin dock,” 1933, Records of the Joint Committees of Congress

Photograph of the USS Akron “Crew bunks,” 1933, Records of the Joint Committees of Congress

Wow.

Am I a bad person for being so happy because old stuff! that I had to re-read the description twice before I picked up on the horrific tragedy aspect? >.> (RIP, gentlemen…)

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    For those of you who didn’t know— yes, we had military zeppelins in the 1930s. And they carried armed biplanes that were...
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    Congress in the Archives will feature monthly staff posts on our blog. Today’s post comes from Center archivist Kris...
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    Am I a bad person for being so happy because old stuff! that I had to re-read the description twice before I picked up...
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