Thursday, July 04, 2013

Tribute to John Paul Jones

Background

The John Paul Jones Memorial is in Washington, D.C.. The memorial honors the United States' first naval war hero and only naval officer to receive a Congressional Gold Medal during the American Revolutionary War. Commodore Jones shouted his famous taunt, "I have not yet begun to fight!", during his battle with HMS Serapis (the Battle of Flamborough Head) in which Jones's Continental Navy squadron engaged a superior (72 guns) force of Royal Navy escorts protecting a large British convoy.  Ultimately, Jones forced the captain of the British vessel to surrender and took command of HMS Serapis.[17]



Fast Forward to July 4, 2013 (Stardate 91111.) TODAY

Look at today's Stardate (obtained here when today's writing commenced).  Does 91111 looks ominously familiar?  Caution seems especially appropriate this year for U.S. patriots, like John Paul Jones.
Perhaps we may interpret the excess of 1s in today's Stardate as symbolic of a new revolution, for revitalization of our diminished and endangered freedoms on this Independence Day.

 

We need another Leader Like John Paul Jones

Descriptions like courageous, cocky and up to the challenge were probably understatements when applied to J.P. Jones (read the linked articles). "I am determined never to draw my sword under command of any man who was not in the Navy as early as myself, unless he has merited a preference by his Superior Services and abilities," Jones writes in one letter.  [source]

Yet, Jones was also a visionary. Writting to Benjamin Franklin, in France at the time, Jones inquired about the possibility of getting French-built ships.
"At present we have no Navy System or Board of Admiralty without which we can never have a respectable Navy," Jones wrote in one letter. In another, he outlines "A plan for the regulation and equipment of the Navy." In it he suggests three shipyards be built — one in New England, one in the Middle Atlantic states and one in the South.  [ibid]

John Paul Jones, born in 1747, began his maritime career at 13 years of age. In 1768, Jones's career quickly  advanced when both the captain and first mate suddenly died of yellow fever. Jones managed to navigate safely  back to port. As reward for his impressive feat, the vessel’s grateful Scottish owners made him ship's master, giving him 10 percent of the cargo.[1]

Jones left for Philadelphia shortly after settling in North America to volunteer his services to the newly founded Continental Navy. During this time, around 1775, the Navy and Marines were being formally established, and suitable ship's officers and captains were in great demand. With help from influential members of the Continental Congress, Jones was appointed a 1st Lieutenant of the newly converted 24-gun frigate Alfred in the Continental Navy on December 7, 1775.[7]

Submarines are always silent and strange.



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