Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Today in Naval History
October 12
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1914 - USS Jupiter (AC 3) is the first U.S. Navy ship to transit the Panama Canal.
On This day


American frigate Boston captures French frigate Le Berceau, one of the French ships that was plaguing the American coast during the Quasi-War with France. After a bloody engagement, Boston brings her prize back to the United States. Though condemned as a legitimate prize of war and sold to the United States government, Le Berceau is returned to France under the terms of the Treaty of Mortefontaine, concluded about two weeks before her capture.


USS Jupiter (AC 3) is the first U.S. Navy ship to transit the Panama Canal. In March 1920, Jupiter is decommissioned. Following conversion, she is renamed USS Langley (CV 1). Upon commissioning in March 1922, Langley becomes the U.S. Navy's first aircraft carrier.


USS Wasp (CV 7) launches 24 Army Curtiss P-40 Warhawks from the 8th Pursuit Group and North American O-47s from the 3rd Observation Squadron off the Virginia Capes, marking the first launches of Army aircraft from U.S. carrier.


Scout dive bombers from VS-71 sink the Japanese destroyer Natsugumo off Savo Island. Also on this date, torpedo bombers from VT-8, Navy and Marine Corps SBDs from VS-3, VS-71, and VMSB-141 and F4F Wildcats from VMF-121, VMF-212, and VMF-224 damage Japanese destroyer Murakumo off New Georgia as she is helping survivors at the Battle of Cape Esperance. She is later scuttled by Japanese destroyer Shirayuki.


Project SEALAB II concludes. During this project, teams of Navy divers and scientists spent 15 days each in SEALAB II moored 205 ft. below the surface near La Jolla, Calif.


USS Guadalcanal (LPH 7) and other ships of Amphibious Forces, Sixth Fleet bring assistance to earthquake victims in Al Asnam, Algeria.


USS Cole (DDG 67) is attacked by terrorists in a small boat laden with explosives during a brief refueling stop in the harbor of Aden, Yemen. The suicide terrorist attack kills 17 members of the ship's crew, wounds 39 others, and seriously damages the ship.