Secretary of the Navy, George Bancroft established the Naval
School at Fort Severn in Annapolis in 1845 with 50 students. In 1850 the
School became the US Naval Academy and adopted the current 4 year
curriculum. Now 4,500 men and women from every US state
(including a few foreign students) attend the Academy each one nominated by
Congressmen. In addition there are 600 faculty members giving a faculty student
ratio of 8:1. Upon graduation 22 degree courses are offered for which
commissions are received in the US Navy or Marine Corps and service is for at
least 5 years.
Throughout years of growth and change, the basic mission of
the Academy has remained unchanged:-
“To develop midshipmen morally, mentally and physically
and to imbue them with the highest ideals of duty, honour and loyalty, in order
to graduate leaders who are dedicated to a career of naval service and have
potential for future development in mind and character to assume the highest
responsibilities of command, citizenship and government”.
Some notable accomplishments of Naval Academy Graduates
President of the United States (1)
Chief of Naval Operations (27)
Members of Congress (22)
Nobel Prize Winners (2)
Medal of Honour Recipients (73)
The interesting and well laid out museum contains a collection
of more than 50,000 items, including ship models, paintings, prints and
artefacts depicting American naval history and the history of the Academy.
Michael felt it was ‘en par’ with the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich,
London. During our visit we saw many trainees officers in the museum, who
are encouraged to ‘gem up’ on naval history.
Entrance to the Naval Academy and not
sure why I’m looking so serious!
Quarters of higher ranking officers,
with entrance steps labelled with current residents
Quarters of the
Superintendent of the Naval Academy – wow !!
The Naval Academy Chapel is
interdenominational and has a capacity for 2500. Inside the stained glass
windows are quite beautiful and the window above the altar, Christ Walking
upon the Water, was designed by Tiffany Studios
John Paul Jones, a naval hero from the
Revolutionary War, is enshrined beneath the Chapel. His remains were
brought to America in 1905 after 113 years in a Paris cemetery (see
Ship’s Bell of the USS
Enterprise and Michael standing in the Yard
See Part 11 for Plebe