(SS-24: dp. 287; l. 135'3"; b. 14'7"; dr. 11'8"; s. 14 k.; cpl. 20; a. 4 18" tt; cl. E)
Skipjack (Submarine No. 24) was launched 27 May 1911 by Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, Mass.; sponsored by Mrs. D. R. Battles; renamed E-1, 17 November 1911; and commissioned 14 February 1912, Lieutenant Chester W. Nimitz in command. She was reclassified SS-24 on 17 July 1920.
Six days after commissioning, E-1 sailed from Boston for Norfolk via Newport and New York. Off the Virginia Capes, she underwent tests through April. Her engines were overhauled at New London, and she began operations off southern New England. On 28 September, she arrived at New York Navy Yard for alterations, repairs, and installation of a Sperry gyrocompass, for which she became a pioneer underwater test ship. She also experimented with submerged radio transmission.
E-1 conducted tests of these and other important developments under the direction of Commander, Submarine Flotilla, Atlantic Fleet, Lieutenant Chester W. Nimitz. Throughout his career the latter played a progressive and leading role in the incorporation into the Navy of the vast scientific and technological developments of this century, many of them pioneered by the Navy.
On 14 October E-1 proudly passed in review with the fleet in the North River before Secretary of the Navy George von L. Meyer.
E-1 continued important experimental development and training with the Atlantic Fleet for the next 5 years until 4 December 1917, when she left Newport for the Azores and different duty. From 12 January 1918, she patrolled between Ponta Delgada and Horta, protecting the islands from German attack and use as a haven by U-boats. She returned to New London, 17 September. After overhaul, E-1 trained new submariners and tested experimental listening gear.
Placed in commission in reserve 20 March 1920, E-1 arrived at Norfolk, 22 April. There she was placed in commission in ordinary, 18 July 1921, and on 17 September sailed for Philadelphia, where she was decommissioned 20 October 1921 and sold 19 April 1922.
Original log of USS E-1; photographs of E-1 (Skipjack, SS-24), and C-5 (Snapper, SS-16), early commands of the later Fleet Admiral Nimitz.