Tag Archives: War

Porter, David

PORTER, DAVID (1780-1843). The son of a veteran of the American Revolution, David Porter was born in Boston and grew up in Baltimore. He began his naval career as a midshipman in 1798 and became master commandant in 1806. In Continue reading & text links

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Peterson, Charles Jacob (“J. Thornton Randolph” or “Harry Danforth”)

[PETERSON, CHARLES JACOB], “HARRY DANFORTH,” “J. THORNTON RANDOLPH” (1819-1887). Charles Jacob Peterson was an editor, publisher, and historian, born in Philadelphia, where he worked all his life. Once he acquired an ample fortune, he and his wife purchased a mansion Continue reading & text links

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Wouk, Herman

by Laurence W. Mazzeno (2000) WOUK, HERMAN (1915-2019). Herman Wouk, author of the best-selling sea novel The Caine Mutiny (1951) and other works about the navy in World War II, was born in New York City, eldest son of Russian Jewish Continue reading & text links

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O’Neill, Eugene

by Margaret Loftus Ranald (2000) O’NEILL, EUGENE [GLADSTONE] (1888-1953). Eugene O’Neill, America’s preeminent playwright, winner of the Nobel Prize (1936) and four Pulitzer Prizes (1920, 1922, 1928, 1957), was born in the Barrett Hotel, New York City, son of the actor Continue reading & text links

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Nordhoff, Charles, the younger AND James Norman Hall

NORDHOFF, CHARLES [BERNARD] the younger (1887-1947) AND JAMES NORMAN HALL (1887-1951). Writers Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall were born the same year but worlds apart, Nordhoff in London of American parents and Hall in Colfax, Iowa. They met during Continue reading & text links

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Nemerov, Howard

NEMEROV, HOWARD [STANLEY] (1920-1991). Howard Nemerov was born in New York City and died in University City, Missouri. He served as a pilot with the Royal Canadian Air Force before joining the U.S. Air Force for the last two years Continue reading & text links

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Nelson, James L.

NELSON, JAMES L. (1962- ). Born in Lewiston, Maine, James L. Nelson, a former professional square-rig sailor, traces his love of the sea to his earliest memories when he chose boats and model ships for boyhood toys. In college Nelson Continue reading & text links

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Michener, James A.

MICHENER, JAMES A[LBERT]. (1907-1997). Prolific novelist James A. Michener was rescued as a foundling by a widow living in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. Years later, having taught high school and college, Michener found his nascent career as a textbook editor interrupted by Continue reading & text links

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Meredith, William

MEREDITH, WILLIAM [MORRIS] (1919-2007). With nine volumes of poetry to his credit, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Partial Accounts: New and Selected Poems (1987) and the National Book Award-winning Effort at Speech: New and Selected Poems (1997), William Meredith is also Continue reading & text links

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Mason, F. Van Wyck

MASON, F[RANCIS]. VAN WYCK (1901-1978). World War I and II veteran, importer, and ultimately writer, F. Van Wyck Mason was born in Boston on 11 November 1901. He was awarded a B.S. from Harvard University in 1924 after serving briefly Continue reading & text links

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Lowell, James Russell

LOWELL, JAMES RUSSELL (1819-1891). James Russell Lowell, poet, literary and social critic, editor, abolitionist, scholar of comparative literature, Harvard professor, diplomat, and consummate traveler, frequently crossed the Atlantic to visit Britain and the Continent. On 12 July 1851, he sailed Continue reading & text links

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Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth

LONGFELLOW, HENRY WADSWORTH (1807-1882). Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was born in Portland, Maine, at a time when that seaport was second in New England only to Boston in total tonnage engaged in maritime trade. Close to half a century later, in Continue reading & text links

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Little, George

Life on the Ocean, or Twenty Years at Sea (1843) Continue reading & text links

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Lane, Carl

LANE, CARL [DANIEL] (1899-1995). Carl Lane, a nautical writer and illustrator born in New York City, developed his love for the sea while vacationing in Maine, where he eventually settled. Lane wrote The Fleet in the Forest (1943), a Great Continue reading & text links

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Judson, Edward Zane Carroll (“Ned Buntline”)

[JUDSON, EDWARD ZANE CARROLL], “NED BUNTLINE” (1823-1886). Edward Zane Carroll Judson, better known by his pseudonym Ned Buntline, was born on the Atlantic coast in Stamford, New York. The family moved to Bethany, Pennsylvania, and then to Philadelphia about the Continue reading & text links

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Jones, Justin (“Harry Hazel”)

[JONES, JUSTIN] “HARRY HAZEL” (1814-1889). Justin Jones, who wrote under the pseudonym Harry Hazel, authored more than forty dime novels about Boston, war, life at sea, and other adventure. His career as a fiction writer covered the 1840s and 1850s, Continue reading & text links

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Jones, John Paul

JONES, JOHN PAUL (1747-1792). Born in Scotland, John Paul went to sea as an apprentice at age twelve. After inheriting property in Virginia, he added “Jones” to his name and became a lieutenant in the Continental navy in 1775. His Continue reading & text links

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Jewett, Sarah Orne

JEWETT, SARAH ORNE (1849-1909). Sarah Orne Jewett was born and raised in South Berwick, Maine, a dwindling shipping and manufacturing center. As a girl she listened to her paternal grandfather’s tales of life as a sea captain, skirting the embargo Continue reading & text links

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Jeffers, Robinson

JEFFERS, [JOHN] ROBINSON (1887-1962). Robinson Jeffers, best known for his verse narratives set on California’s rugged northern coast, was born in Pennsylvania. In 1903 he moved with his family to Los Angeles and entered Occidental College, where he studied geology, Continue reading & text links

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de Hartog, Jan

DE HARTOG, JAN (1914-2002). Born in Holland, Jan de Hartog ran off to sea when he was ten years old. Six years later he enrolled in Amsterdam Naval College and became a junior mate in the Dutch oceangoing tugboat service. Continue reading & text links

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Halyard, Harry

“HALYARD, HARRY” (dates unknown). “Harry Halyard” is the pseudonym of the unknown author of twelve novels published in the mid-nineteenth century. Five of them were intended to exploit public interest in the Mexican War: The Chieftain of Churubusco (1848), The Continue reading & text links

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Hallet, Richard Matthews

HALLET, RICHARD MATTHEWS (1887-1967). In 1912, at age twenty-five and with both a B.A. and LL.B. from Harvard University, Richard Matthews Hallet abandoned the practice of law in search of adventure and a career as a sea-writer. A New Englander Continue reading & text links

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Hall, Lawrence Sargent

HALL, LAWRENCE SARGENT (1915-1993). Lawrence Sargent Hall was born in Haverhill, Massachusetts. Following completion of his Ph.D. at Yale University in 1941, he served for four years as an officer in the U.S. Navy, including three years of sea duty. Continue reading & text links

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Freneau, Philip

FRENEAU, PHILIP [MORIN] (1752-1832). An “occasional” poet born in New York City, Philip Freneau during his long life wrote lyric and narrative poems on a wide range of subjects. Since he spent many years working on ships, a sizable number Continue reading & text links

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Faulkner, William

FAULKNER, WILLIAM [CUTHBERT] (1897-1962). William Faulkner, who lived and wrote in the hills of north Mississippi, often visited the Gulf coast. From April to June 1925, he resided in New Orleans, frequently sailing on yachts and riverboats. Years later he Continue reading & text links

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Fanning, Nathaniel

FANNING, NATHANIEL (1755-1805). Nathaniel Fanning’s Narrative of the Adventures of an American Navy Officer (1806) is one of the most reliable, graphic, and extensive eyewitness accounts of the famous battle between the Bonhomme Richard and the Serapis. Following the four-hour Continue reading & text links

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Equiano, Olaudah

by Arnold Schmidt (2000, rev. 2021) EQUIANO, OLAUDAH (1745-1797). By the time he died at the end of the eighteenth century, mariner, author, and abolitionist Olaudah Equiano had likely become the wealthiest and most famous Black man in the Atlantic Continue reading & text links

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Dickey, James

DICKEY, JAMES [LAFAYETTE] (1923-1997). James Dickey, noted poet, novelist, and critic, was born in Atlanta, Georgia. During World War II, he served in a night-fighter squadron in the South Pacific. In the late 1940s he attended Vanderbilt University, during which Continue reading & text links

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Delano, Amasa

DELANO, AMASA (1763-1823). Amasa Delano, whose Voyages and Travels (1817) was the source for Herman Melville’s “Benito Cereno” (1855), was born in Duxbury, Massachusetts. After serving briefly in the Continental army during the American Revolution, Delano began a lifelong career Continue reading & text links

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Davis, Richard Harding

DAVIS, RICHARD HARDING (1864-1916). Born in Philadelphia, Richard Harding Davis was the first child born to the journalist L. Clarke Davis and the fiction writer Rebecca Harding Davis. He soon followed in his parents’ footsteps as a newspaperman and later Continue reading & text links

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Connell, Evan S., Jr.

CONNELL, EVAN S[HELBY]., JR (1924-2013). Born in Kansas City and educated at Dartmouth, Columbia, and Stanford, Evan S. Connell Jr. remains best known for his novels Mrs. Bridge (1959) and Mr. Bridge (1969). Connell wrote the screenplay of the 1990 film adaptation that combined Continue reading & text links

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Clancy, Tom

CLANCY, TOM (1947-2013). The Hunt for Red October (1984) was Tom Clancy’s first published novel, catapulting him to celebrity. Fast-paced action, subtle character development, and accurate and abundant technical information make this a suspenseful and convincing story, one more focused on the Continue reading & text links

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Bridge, Horatio

BRIDGE, HORATIO (1806-1893). A naval officer, Horatio Bridge is most famous for his close friendship with Nathaniel Hawthorne, for whom he found a publisher for Twice-told Tales (1837) and to whom Hawthorne dedicated The Snow Image (1851). Born in Augusta, Maine, Bridge graduated from Continue reading & text links

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Brewer, Lucy

“BREWER, LUCY.” Lucy Brewer is the pseudonym of either Nathaniel Coverly Jr. (1775?-1824), an early nineteenth-century Boston broadside and pamphlet publisher, or a writer in his employ, Nathaniel Hill Wright (1787-1824). Brewer’s The Adventures of Louisa Baker (1815) is purportedly a Continue reading & text links

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Blatchford, John

BLATCHFORD, JOHN (1762-1794). John Blatchford’s account of his voyages is one of the more extraordinary sea narratives from the American Revolution. First published in 1788 and soon republished in at least half a dozen other editions, Blatchford’s Narrative of Remarkable Occurrences Continue reading & text links

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Beach, Edward Latimer Sr.

BEACH, EDWARD LATIMER, SR. (1867-1943). Edward Latimer Beach Sr., novelist, was born 30 June 1867 in Toledo, Ohio. Graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1888, he took part in the Battle of Manila Bay on 1 May 1898 and Continue reading & text links

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Beach, Edward Latimer Jr.

BEACH, EDWARD LATIMER [JR] (1918-2002). As his father had done, Edward L. Beach [Jr.] spent a career as a naval officer and wrote many books on naval topics. Three of these are excellent novels about submarines. Beach graduated from the Continue reading & text links

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Barnes, James

BARNES, JAMES (1866-1936). Author of books about naval history and naval wartime campaigns, as well as juvenile works on naval leaders, Colonel James Barnes was a prolific writer, historian, journalist, and naval officer. His depiction of seafaring individuals is characterized Continue reading & text links

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