Fargo (CL 106) - Naval Cruise Book

 - Class of 1949

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Fargo (CL 106) - Naval Cruise Book online yearbook collection, 1949 Edition, Cover

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Text from Pages 1 - 122 of the 1949 volume:

R M A N I A THE . H1P . . OF HER CREW STORY OF A SHIP - w. e. a p Ks© . .AHD SIX MONTHS IN THE MEDITERRAHEAH C lie presflge, pi h ' lieges a)w the l)Liwe)i of commdna . . . Joseph ( o)iraa. Only a seaman realizes to what great extent an entire ship reflects the personahty and ability of one individual, her commanding officer. To a landsman this is not understandable and sometimes it is even difficult for us to comprehend, — but it is so!! A ship at sea is a distinct world in herself and in consideration of the protracted and distant operations of the fleet units the Navy must place great power, responsibility, and trust in the hands of those leaders chosen for command. In each ship there is one man who, in the hour of emergency or peril at sea, can turn to no other man. There is one who alone is ultimately responsible for the safe navigation, engineering perform- ance, accurate gunfire, and morale of his ship. He is the command- ing officer. He is the ship. This is the most difficult and demanding assignment in the Navy. There is not an instant during his tour of duty as commanding officer that he can escape the grasp of command responsibility. His privi- leges in view of his obligations are almost ludicrously small; never- theless command is the spur which has given the Navy its great leaders. It is a duty which most richly deserves the highest, time-honored title of the seafaring world . . . Captain. v: a CAPTAIN WALLIS FREDERICK PETERSEN. USN Navy Cross — Legion of Merit — Bronze Star Medal Captain Petersen assumed command of FARGO on 10 August 1948. He commenced immediately to im- press his aims and devotion to the ship and the service on FARGO and her company. On 3 August 1949 he relinquished command of FARGO immediately following the presentation of the Cruiser Battle Efficiencv Pennant. For FARGO it was a fitting climax to a year of effort, teamwork, and ulti- mate success. For Captain Petersen it was the culmina- tion of a career of service to his country in the ships of her Navy. The state of his ship is a tribute to his able leadership and the inspiring loyalty and faith he instilled in his men. EXECUTIVE OFFICER CDR. J. W. KOENIC, USN sx ■ The Executive Officer is the force that translates command decision into action and handles all of the numerous problems of administration affecting the ship. In terms of sheer effort this duty is probably the most arduous task to be found in a man o ' war. To know how well this assignment is being handled look at the ship, at her record and at her men. For Commander J. W. Koenig, USX, Executive Of- ficer of F.ARGO, the Navy is more than a career; it is almost a religion. Born to the traditions of the sea, the commander has won the respect and admiration of his shipmates for that famed Koenig " know how " , which is always ready on a crowded quarterdeck or on a busy bridge. Commander Koenig has given his best to FARGO; leading by peerless example and inspiring all hands to the appreciation of the Navy as a living con- cept. Paragraphs of detail might well be written con- cerning this officer but how can one justly enhance the import of the phrases; most capable seaman, paragon of leadership, sincere friend. 8 c orewon d It is not possible to do more in these pages tlian briefly sketch a rough outhne of the days of our months in the Mediterranean. The details lie in the hearts and memories of our shipmates where much of the real story will remain. We have tried to cover the highlights of our cruise, and s incerely hope that this log will in future days bring back memories of FARGO and the segment of time — February 28 through S Dptember 21, 1949. Serving together, fair weather and foul, for six months outside the continental limits has forged a strong bond among us all; Captain, Officers and Crew. It is this in- tangible bond expressed in the term " shipmate " and born of well earned respect, common effort, and mutual pride in our ship that has made the " FARGO SPIRIT " known through the fleet. It is to the crew that this log is properly dedicated. To the lookout in sky forward on a stormy mid watch; to the engineer in the engine room carefully eyeing the RPM ' s during a hot afternoon off Malta; to the hands of the " ALL HANDS " evolution who bring the stores and ammo aboard. To the crew who have made FARGO the great ship that she is. The Editor OPERATIONS V vOM- «»«■ • . ■».• ■ • ■ •• ■ ' ■Va. S% ■ ■ " aVa ■ ■ LCDR. R. B. HARRELL, U. S. N Navigator CDR. R. P. WINKEL, U.S.N. Operations Officer LT, J. W. BLANTON. U.S.N. Communications Officer Left to right: LTJC J. H. Fluhart; LTJC J. F. Houck, Jr.; ENS I. W Wetzger: ENS A. L. Jenks, Jr.; ENS J. M. Hornbrook; ENS W. C. Read. Jr. 10 CR DIVISION Under the lash of " Terrible " Lieut. John Blanton as Comm. Officer, " CR " Division of 41 men shapes up as one of the hot divisions of the ship, for through them, literally as well as figuratively, come and go all radio communications in FARGO. That is not bedlam you see on the 02 level, but Chief Gibson, like a mastermind- ing general, marshalling his force between Radios 1, 2, 3, and 4. It is no place for weak nerves or frayed tem- pers, for through CR Division passes probably the larg- est volume of traffic in any U. S. Navy ship afloat. And into CR Division passes probably the greatest amount of coffee per man afloat. It is the lifeblood which feeds their mechanical brains which, if analyzed would prob- ably be found to be a cross between a coffeebean and a lightbulb. 11 KING DIVISION Qualifications for Kint; Division are a high IQ, love of work, and just enough marbles missing to make you like radar. Radar is a mystery and so are the men who run it. Thirty-two radarmen who spend a watch-in- three underway and most of their work ing hours at anchor trying to find out the " why " of electronics. King Division counts as one of the brains of the ship. Watches are spent in the lovely surroundings of their au-condi- tioned squirrel cage commonly known as Combat In- formation Center. Common neuroses acquired at work are symptoms known as Plot Happy, Pip Happy, Scope Happy states. Sickcall is held immediately following quarters every morning by BMC Thomas. It is rumored that a Chief Bosn ' s Mate was assigned to the division in order to keep a certain mental stability among the inmates of CIC. 12 CS DIVISION ff.trif-t ' f s .fc % .» ■ 5 High above the common folk on the bridge with Ad- mirals and Captains, CS Division stands its watches. For the 37 men of the CS Division control the ship through conn and signals. Divided into two sections, the quartermaster and signal sections, CS is responsible for navigating the ship by taking bearings and sights, man- ning the helm and all secondary steering controls, and correcting charts. Little wonder then, that FARGO feels safe, knowing that under the watchful eyes of Chief Browning and Meiers, QMl, the great George Miller stands at the helm, guiding the destinies of ship and crew. Always anxious to make an honest dollar, George would rather run an anchor pool or any other type of lottery, than eat. Of course, whether or not he eats ashore usually depends on the lottery. Out in the weather on the signal bridge, however, stand the other section of CS Division, the signal gang, which used to have flags on their arms and haven ' t yet quite become used to wheels. To the signal gang belongs the responsi- bility of the proper handling of signals other than radio. They are responsible for all visual messages originating and entering FARGO, by flashing light, semaphore, flag hoist, and yardarm blinker. Skilled as they are in sig- nals, they are also the best lookouts on the ship. When not climbing volcanoes, Custer heads up this section of the division. 13 ;?i4 " ' « ' , 5;- ' « TO :;;; s P ' ; WJ?- = tv ' ' ' ! s ' " ' t™! «8s»s8!«s . ' -k " " - •t v: n% ■.s!«j c¥«s GUNNERY J LT. H 0. WEBSTER, Jr.. U S N Air Defense Oft.; Ass ' t. Gunnery Officer LCDR. E J FRUECHTL. U.S.N. Gunnery Officer LT. C. W LANG, U.S.N. First Lieutenant Front row, left to right: ENS J. W, Hemann; ENS J, T. Hayes; LTJG R. L. Cfiapman; ENS W. S. Stokes; ENS T. L. Debany. CHCUN L. V, Hodges: LTJG D. M. Wynne. Second row: CHBOSN R. B. Ramsey; LTJG T 0. Thompkins: ENS W. C. Peterson; ENS R F. Ennis: CHGUN P. J. Langen; LT C. R. Wood, Jr ; CAPT " A " " G " SavelL 14 FIRST DIVISION Wr- MH One of the Largest divisions in the ship, the First needs sixty men or thereabouts to accomphsh a full day ' s work, but it is a full day ' s work every day. When the word is passed to man the anchor detail it is First which takes over the detail, but weighing and lowering the two hooks is only part of their job. Main battery, one and two turrets, are manned by First Division which sparkles with such characters as Gallop and Beardsley cracking the whip in number one turret; Arbuckie, the pride and joy of the forward part of the Fargo, " Pop " Kennon who is alleged to have acted as mess cook at the Boston Tea Party, and " Notes " Melody who is a great " blues " singer. First takes its rhythm from " Shaky " Doerr and its color from " Chopsticks " Oram, an old asiatic if there ever was one. All in all, it is a colorful and sharp division which keeps the main deck forward, including Admiral ' s coun- try, sharp and shipshape; a savvy and sea-going crew with sea-stories a mile long and then some. V 15 SECOND DIVISION f. The village greer or main piazz.1 .ibo.iid FARGO is the spot presided o ■ y ' " Mayor " Vartabedian and the boys of the Second _ on. " Lay aft to the fantail " for movies, church, hour, all hands evolutions, and flight quarters an, t into Second Division ' s hair. They are the lucky lat ho preside over the after end of the ship. When no parking cars in their spacious sea-going parking spat raising and lowering boats, playing yo-yo with the ' Gooney Bird, " Second Division finds time to man turrets three and four of the main battery and lend a hand with the 2 0MM Mounts. It is commonly rumored about the ship that Vartabedian, leading chief of the division, would long since have thrown in the sponge without the able assistance of Schwartz and Trubiano. There is so much to be done on the fantail that we understand Vartabedian is being hardpressed to find listeners for his long, long list of sea stories. Proud of their Softball team. Second thinks they have the loudest coach on the ship in the person of " Hog " Sanders. He can make as much noise through- out the ship as " Shorty " Bourne, who passes the word over the PA system suspended in mid-air unless there is a chair available. V 16 FOURTH DIVISION .5 5. V»..1 ■ mj ' jt - M . 1 f ,t f f iffti ' tm k !? • €. Lay topside in the vicinity of 5 " Mounts No. 2, 4, 6, during working hours, and you might have to look for the ensign to be sure you are in an American ship. When Mungo calls the roll, Beto, Ruvolo, Valente, Ares- co, answer up, making the Fourth the " Little Italy " of FARGO. Fifty-two men under Ensign Ennls, Fourtli takes care of port side aft, including the second, fourth, and sixth mounts under the eye of C. Wade, Geib, and L. E. Wade. This is reputed to be the most artistic division on board, showing a great predilection for painting everything in sight as often as possible. The fact that it is always easier to p.iint over than scrub down, has nothing to do with their love for art and color. Lieut. Lang, it is rumored on good authority, mtends exchanging Fourth Division paint chits for molto lire the next time FARGO arrives in Napoli. It is understood that Mungo ' s signature will be honored any place in Southern Italy. A happy division. Fourth ' s one and only gripe is the fact that somebody spirited away the " Joe " pot from the port gear locked. Now there is no more caffe espresso. These futui ' e Di Maggios and Lavagettos are red hot for Softball and have lost only one game in the league since Ensign Ennis took to umpiring their games. 17 V X. ' A V- 1 HMH! it bsMbSBP BI jj HBA " MW) ' - - V FIFTH DIVISION The most sacred part of the deck on .iny ship — and especially so on a flagship — is the quarterdeck, hallowed by custom and tradition. Up the FARGO ' s accom- modation ladder and over its quarterdeck have passed as many important personages as on any quarterdeck in the present Navy. Both the accommodation ladder and quarterdeck — are the special responsibility of the Fifth Division. They also inherit the No. I motor launch and whaleboat; To their gunnery the 1, .1, and 5 " Mounts. To Douglas and his crew in No. 3 mount goes credit for one of the most sparkling mounts on the ship. Simonson is leading P.O.; Teehan, " leading " character. A hard working and conscientious division is the Fifth. 18 SIXTH DIVISION In the days of sail, the Sixth Division, whose domain is the superstructure, would have been the division to rig the topsails and topgallants. Although those days are gone forever, the forty-five men of the Sixth still regard themselves as real sailors among the deck divi- sions. To them belongs everything forward of the mainmast and to them belongs also a feeling of pride in the appearance of FARGO. Leading petty officer, BMl Clark, claims to have some of the best petty ofticers of the ship ill BM2 Basham, BM2 Kania, and Gunners Mates Bernard, Nelson, and Sharps. Battle-stations for the Sixth are the four forty MM mounts port side. Em- ploying twelve men to a mount, the forty MM ' s are con- sidered to be one of the best guns now In use for anti- aircraft defense. Intelligence, alertness, and a very highly developed spirit for teamwork are requirements necessary for these guns. All are qualities characteristic of the Sixth Division. 19 SEVENTH DIVISION The top number of the deck divisions, Seventh holds sway over the after starboard side of the main deck. Including such characters as " Ace " Covington, the petty officers ' friend, and " Wop " Delillis, known for his sleek and manly build. Seventh has the duty of rigging the after starboard gangway, the crew ' s exit to the land of liberty, and that long walk up the accommodation ladder on the way back from the land of liberty. Knocking down drones and tearing up target sleeves is old hat with the members of this division on their 40 MM. batteries. L H|r m V 20 EIGHTH DIVISION Since " the shores of Tripoli " , the Mediterranean has seen the United States Marines, but we doubt if it ever saw a better looking, smarter drilled outfit than the 41 men of the Eighth Division. Handpicked for sea-duty, and carefully moulded into shape by Captain Savell, Lt. Webster, and T Sgt. H. M. Bennett, the Eighth Divi- sion performs duty aboard FARGO as Admiral ' s, Cap- tain ' s and Exec ' s orderlies; corporal of the guard; and honor guard. They are the first division to be seen by distinguished visitors coming aboard and are resplendent in their dress blues, provided, of course. Captain Savell has twisted their arms. Don ' t think for a minute, how- ever, that this division spends all its time at parade. To them belong the 20MM guns, and they lay claim to more drones and sleeves knocked down than all other divi- sions combined. To them belong the distinction of hav- ing the only " jumping " gun aboard ship. The ' have expended more gun barrels than ammunition. Always wilhng to oblige. Eighth Division has consistently come up with somethng for a laugh at the happy hours, Pas- ternak, Kitinos, and Hertling. " The Tasty Yeast Trio " , have had to dig pretty deep sometimes, but they usually come up with something to while away the dull hours. Proud of its Eighth Division, all hands can say they are the best Marines aboard ship. 21 FOX DIVISION ' % In tlic " i;()od old days " of gunnery, a gun crew man- ned Its gun, took a bearing by guess and by God, and let go with a salvo. In these days of mathematical in- genuity and complicated electronics and mechanics, it takes all the seventy-five men of the Fox Division to get on the target, to stay on it, to know and repair the in- genius devices known as hrecontrol apparatus aboard a modern Man-o ' -war. Under the responsibilit) ' of the Fox Division of 75 men come all hrecontrol instruments, main battery, five inch, and 4U mm. directors aboard ship. To them also belongs duty in the plotting rooms, the mechanical brains of the Gunnery Department. The result IS that almost all men in the division are high- school graduates and competition for advancement is keen. Rating badges are those of firecontrolmen and gunner ' s mates. Seen any day in the armory during music appreciation hour which consists of beating ones gums to the tune of the latest Mediterranean music are such characters of the division as Molyneux, De Mars, Fiore, and Brown, L. E. The last named has been aboard since 1945 and so qualifies as tlivision plankowner. 22 VICTOR DIVISION i85 i Vk V for " Volare " from the Latin " to fly " , V Division is concerned with the upkeep, rep.iir, and general flying condition of the " Gooney Bird " , our observation plane with which the second division plays yo-yo so often. The smallest division on the ship, consisting of 8 men, " V " Division is the one squad which is 100 ' , volunteer for duty aboard FARGO. Their home base is f U2 Squadron with headquarters at NAS Lakehurst, N. J. to which they will head like homing pigeons as soon as we hit the States. V Division is now operating the last re- maining catapulted seaplane in the Navy. From now on they will be working only with helicopters. Good to have had you aboard, V Division. ■ " H T i 1 H|||B i . J 23 ENGINEERING LT. P. N. MACDONALD. U.S.N Main Propulsion Ass t. LCDR. C. F BRITNER. Jr , U S N Engineer Officer LT. A. W. BAIN. U S N. Damage Control Ass ' t. First row, left to right LT D. J. loli; CHMACH H. T Lundberg; CARP S P Yorden; ENS P. J. Goldman. Second row; CHREL T. W Howard; LTJC J. S. Crischy; ENS L. F. Shunk ; CHELEC W. J. Holmes; ENS J. E. Benoit. , 24 ABLE DIVISION A for .luxiliary. Able is an able division. To it be- long, as primary responsibility, all auxiliary macliiner)- in the ship outside the engine and hre rooms. To these machinist ' s mates, enginemen, machinery repairmen, and refrigerator repairmen, belong all air conditioning, refrigeration, winches, hoists, cranes, and the large ma- chine shop. All are either skilled in their trade, or strikers under the direction of CWO Lundberg and Chief Stevenson. At General Quarters, Able forms into damage control teams, each capable of rapid and neces- sary repairs resulting from battle damage. If there are no accidental fires, A Division starts ' em just for prac- tice. ENS Shunk is often seen sneaking about some in- accessible part of the ship armed with a smoke bomb. o !2r 25 BAKER DIVISION r " 1 1. 4. T Th.u FARGO is the leading ship of the Fleet in fuel economy is due to the entire engineering department but particuLirK- to B Division which, with its 8 8 men figur- atively watching every drop of oil that goes to fire its boilers, has cut consumption of oil to the barest mini- mum. This division is made up of firemen apprentices, boiler tenders, and machinist ' s mates who have, as their primary responsibility, the firing of FARGO ' s four large boilers which furnish the energy to drive this sleek ship through the water with the best and fastest of them. Working under the close eye of the eleven chiefs in the firerooms, are these snipes, the forgotten men of the ship, but one of the most important divisions there is aboard. And when the word is passed to fuel our ship, or another from ours, it is the oil kings of B Division who appear on deck out of the bowels of the ship to see that the black gold flows expeditiously into and out of our huge storage tanks. I o 26 EASY DIVISION One look at the portly frames of Mr. Beauzay, elec- trical officer, Mr. Holmes, division officer, and Chief Ingram of Easy Division, and you might think this divi- sion came by its name from the easy life it leads. Such, however, is not the case — deck apes to the contrary! Easy is the electrical department of the engineers, taking care of the electrical end of the generators and responsi- ble for the distribution of electricity to all parts of the ship, " hen one considers the tremendous use of elec- tricity aboard a light cruiser, that becomes a big job. Divided into three sections, Easy under Chief Bibler in the power section takes care of all 440 volts equipment on board. The lighting section under Chief Ingram is concerned with all 110 volt equipment such as lighting, fans, and electrical appliances. Intercommunications under Chief Yurkus includes the servicing and main- tenance of all intercommunications on board, including telephones, signal systems, and gyro compasses. As extra duty, Easy runs the movies, thereby letting Weaver and Bell in for some extra compensation. At one time pret- ty classy on the Softball diamond, Easy has lately drop- ped to a new low in the league standing. Whether or not this is the result of Desjarlais ' activities on or off the ballfield is not yet apparent. 27 MIKE DIVISION 1t f r I ' ?. Proud of its contribution to FARGO ' s engineering record, Mike Division stands out as one of the finest divisions on the ship. Fiftj ' -five men working to- gether, Mike ' s responsibihry is the main propulsion units of the ship. The efficient operation of the main engines is their one great aim in life; to keep them at the peak of efficiency is the work of machinist ' s mates and firemen of this division. More than that, every time you take a shower or drink a cup of water you can thank Mike Division, because one of its collateral duties is the distillation of almost 40,000 gallons of water per day in the ship ' s two evaporators. Highly trained, Mike also boasts a high IQ rate among its members, six of whom at present are qualifying for the Naval Academy entrance tests. Much of the credit for their interest and training goes to " Pop " Manfield ' s tutoring in the finer arts of engineering. It must be a popular division, because almost all its members are staying for twenty. 2S ROGER DIVISION The seagoing plumbers of Roger Division finally came into their own at Villefranche when they were called away to man the USS WATERBARGE under the able command of Carpenter S. P. Yorden, USN, Combarg I. Otherwise, this important division is engaged in such multifarious duties aboard FARGO that it is impossible to ennumerate them. Divided into two separate sec- tions, Roger takes care of all maintenance and damage control on the ship. Roger is a combination fire depart- ment, riot squad, sanitary department, salvage company, CIO AFL, (except that they are not paid for over- time), carpentry shop, welding company, filling station, and just about everything else that can be imagined. When not losing on the baseball field, Roger holds sway over a few of the following departments: chemical de- fense equipment; compressed air systems; diving equip- ment; CO " fire extinguishers; fire fighting equipment; fire pumps; fresh and salt water systems; handybilly pumps; plumbing equipment; ventilation systems; and shipfitter shop machinery. But that isn ' t all! At gen- eral quarters Rogers Division goes into action as the damage control department aboard ship responsible for the repair of all damage, and the watertight safety and integrity of the vessel. This is really the " can do " divi- sion in FARGO. ' 29 TARE DIVISION Direct descendants of Marconi and De Forrest, inter- ested in sound waves of any length and description provided they fall within the electronics band. Tare Division is a small outfit of nineteen men who alone on the ship seem to know how radar works. Segregated from the common herd by Poppa Homick and Momma Huntington, under the watchful eye of R.M. Cousins, leading Petty Otficer of the division. Tare divides its time between shooting the breeze in Radio Two and the radar workshop and hopping off on tours to various and sundry places, all the while shooting pictures like Yankee tourists. In between times, they manage to do a fair amount of work maintaining all the electronics equip- ment aboard FARGO. This includes search radar, fire- control radar, as well as radio transmitters and receivers. If they work, they are maintained by Tare. " Hurried calls of important nature " are to have a look at the radio of " somebody " on the Staff; fix the ' urlitzer on the messdeck, or check a private phonograph. Practically all men in the division have gone to electronic ' s technician ' s school, most at Great Lakes, Illinois. So aloof are they, that they have their own division barber in the person of Richard Seelye. It is rumored that the ship ' s barber experiences a charge of radio-activity if he attempts the job. 30 •■i ' ■W - -s EXECUTIVE CHSCLK. A. N. WHITWELL, U.S.N. Personnel Officer LT. A. MAJOR. U.S N. Assistant to Executive Officer LT. M.J.H. MACINNES, iChC U.S.N R. Chaplain Executive Officer ' s Office 31 EX DIVISION ■m ■ Ca en I X X Familiar to all, in and out of the Navy, is that com- modity necessary in all large organizations known as red tape. The larger the organization, the more yards of red tape necessary to foul up the detail. Past masters at the red string are the eighteen members of the EX Division who, under the watchful eye of Chief Shatley (when he isn ' t reading a mystery book) and Mr. Whit- well and Chief Butts, beat out the destinies of officers and men on their Royals and Underwoods. You are a name and a number when you get to the EX Division, for by name and number ever) man aboard is known in the Exec ' s and Captain ' s oifices. In the Exec ' s Office are kept your service records, liberty cards, quarterly marks, aptitudes, special request chits and whatever secrets you may have thought you had. In the Captain ' s office are contained the inner secrets of the officers of FARGO. From them both, emanate the reams and reams of memoranda, special orders, restriction lists, plans of the day, ship ' s orders, and all other " red tape " while the print shop grinds and grinds and the poor little mimeograph machine gasps for breath. Small, but a busy division is the EX. 32 LTJC. H. B. SCOTT. (MO U.S.N. R. Senior Medical Officer LTJC C. E. CLEASON, ' DC U S.N. Dental Officer " r,- Surgery underway 33 HOW DIVISION Do you have th.u tired feeling; feet ache; low back strain; yellow color in your e)es? ' hat you need is a visit to the H Division where you will be overwhelmed with sympathy and tender loving care. The first thing you know you will be either in bed or on the operating table. Montney will take your life history, Cox your blood, Shemo will stretch you out on the table and be- fore you know it you will be a " case " . H Division is one of the most active divisions on the ship. Concerned with health and preventive medicine H Division ' s motto is that of the Navy Medical Corps: " To keep as many men at as many guns as many days as possible. " This is accomplished by preventing outbreaks of disease, pro- phylaxis, daily sanitary inspections, and keeping com- plete medical files on all hands. ith both a surgeon and internist in the department, H Division can cope with almost all medical problems. Dental care is ably taken care of by Dr. Gleason and HM.i Freeman. f 34 w SUPPLY . S AV.V. .A V. -.JVW.-. W. -. w:f - M . f-ij - ' f- ' .. iliiili, LCDR C D HACK, iSCi U.S.N. Supply Officer LTJC J F Huntress: CHPCLK J A Radspinner; CHPCLK A M Rowell, Jr. 35 S-l DIVISION Just about the most pleasing bugle call to a sailor ' s ears is " Pay Call " which sounds on FARGO on the 1st and 15th of every month. It is a day of great activity in the disbursing section of S-l Divison. Langlais and Mr. Huntress trying hard not to wake up Major, gather up the greenbacks, and supported by heavy artillery, make their way aft to the mess to hold payday. Long before that, much figuring and mathematical acro- batics have taken place in the inner sanctum to be sure that everyone receives his due. Disbursing, however, is only part of the duties of S-l. Another important oper- ation in the Mediterranean is trie exchange of money. Like a Rothschild banking firm, S-l spends part of each day negotiating dollars, drachmas, lire, francs, ruppees, and kurus. Also under S-l come the main storerooms of the ship, such as GSK, clothing and small stores, paint locker, all spare parts, bolts, nuts, and electrical supplies. Whatever you need, from a washer to an extra liberty launch, S-l will get it through to you if Mr. Rowell has to bring it on his back. Among other colorful charac- ters in S-l are Derby, in charge of all storerooms, and the irresistible Souza, who gives to storekeeping a flair and " joie de vivre " not found in any other ship of the fleet. It s reported that Chanel No. 5 and Mais Oui are being stocked together with cleaning compound in GSK. 56 S-2 DIVISION -M •Jli.Wi You have heard it said that a modern man-of-war is a floating city. If so, then the downtown section with its restaurants, shops and stores, its butchers, bakers, and candlestick makers is S-2 Division. One of the largest divisions on the ship, S-2 is the most responsible for the comfort and material well being of all officers and men. They take care of the needs, comforts, and pleasure of everyone from the Admiral down to the newest recruit. S-2 includes cooks and bakers, stewards and messmen, barbers, cobblers, laundrymen, tailors, and ice-cream makers. In order to feed and care for FARGO ' s 1200 men, it takes 90 of S-2 Division. In a weeks time, every man aboard has his hair cut once; every man and officer has his laundry done including over a thousand suits of whites, and consumes an incredible amount of coke, candy, and Sambo. In order to feed the multitude, S-2 in a year ' s time uses 43 8,000 lbs. of spuds, 219,000 lbs. of flour; 82,350 dozens of eggs; 219,000 lbs. of fresh fruit; 346,750 lbs. of fresh meat; and 63,875 whole pies besides other foodstuffs too numerous to mention. Besides the main galley, men of S-2 see that the Ad- miral ' s, Captain ' s, Officers ' and Warrant Officers ' messes are well administered. 37 COMM. UNIT 32 X This organization consists of a small group of six men. Unit 32 is characteri cd by maturity, hard work, study. They are all married and are family men with consider- and devotion to duty. In the whole imit there is not a able time in service who are making the Navv a career. man below first class. fr 38 DRONE UNIT Reporting aboard 22 April, 1949, while FARGO was anchored in Golfe Juan was indeed a stroke of good fortune, for it was the beginning of a cruise which we •will not soon forget in one of the smartest and happiest ships in the Navy. P A Unit Three, through the whole hearted coopera- tion of ships company and in keeping with FARGO ' s reputation as a smart ship, set an enviable record, by taking first place in competition with other P A Units in successful flight operations. However, our P A oper- ations were not without their share of hits and misses. An attempt to land a PA on McCard met with very little success but created a good deal of excitement, both in McCard and FARGO. The highest score of P A ' s splashed, without question, was awarded FARGO ' s tele- type circuit which, without previous warning, would assume control and perform maneuvers and acrobatics which were beyond the skill of any pilot, with perhaps the exception of Tex O ' Neill. 39 MAA FORCE " THE UNFOPGETABLES " 40 HAPpy HOUR f T iUi rr - 1 pr- ®-i, f» « k - 7 On the first fair evening . ' P- Round two , ;, tf»??fl! ' " Talkin ' Blues " ¥!l MM« v% 41 y " 1 v, ■:= « A The " Med " was not so fair Onroule At 0800, February 28, 1949 a normal day was com- mencing in Newport town on the coast of Xarra- gansett bav. For FARGO, swinging to buoy Mike 15, a very significant day had begun. A tens2 air of immi- nent farewell hung over the ship. Early reveille and the throb of the main engines marked our final hours in the United States. At 1100 the IJV talker on the bridge reported, " The ten inch is unshackled and clear of the buoy, sir. " The cruise had begun. The dull grev shores of Aquidneck Island soon dropped aft. A heavy snowfall set in from eastward, and we were alone in the silent white world. " Rig ship for heavy weather " went over the PA system shortly after leaving port. W ' ell into the North Atlantic by 1700 the newer arrivals in the fleet got a royal welcome from old man Neptune. After rolling through six days of leaden sea and grey overcast the men on deck saw clear- ing skies. On the first fair evening FARGO held " Hap- py Flour " staged by Chaplain Maclnnes and that over- sized fugitive from a torpedo plane, Lt. Russell. As the main yard traced a succession of slow arcs against the evening sky, all hands not on watch or in sick bay mus- tered on the fantail. The versatile senior aviator as M.C soon had the mixture of songs, skits, and slapstick well underwav. The area aft of turret 4 resembled a cross between Major Bowes amateur hour and the manic de- pressive ward at Bellevue. The programme contained such choice presentations as " The Flill Billy Quartet, " " Casey at the Bat " and " The Charthouse Players " . At 1530, March 9, 1949, the most famous large stone in the world was abeam. Gibraltar was her usual im- pressive self although the afternoon was considerably " Cooney " mechanic Monkey cage overcast and tlireatc ' iied r.iin. There were those certain few who admittedly strained to see the Prudential sign on the Eastern Slope of Gib. By 2000 the strait was 75 miles astern and FARGO was again in her old cruis- ing ground. " The ship looks like a monkey cage " , Lt. Major said, as the watch on the bridge was relieved. And so it did; for this was our first sunny day since Newport and the entire superstructure swarmed with men busily engaged in preparing FARGO for duty as flagship, COM- MANDER SIXTH TASK FLEET. The Mediterranean was not fair as some of the old timers had promised and off the southern coast of Greece we were hit by a brief but violent mistral. In spite of this squall, Athens was reached on schedule 14 March 1949. The Acropolis was visible from our anchorage through the characteristic violet haze which shrouds the city. After dark the city had few attractions due to the state of civil war existing in the country, but there was an inexhaustible supply of historic monuments to be visited during daylight hours. The land was poverty stricken and war ridden and there was something rather incongruous about the descendants of Socrates and Phidius driving taxis for a fee (A considerable one). Several groups made the all day tour to ancient Corinth. U.S.S ALBANY had relieved FARGO in Septem- ber 1948, and the time had come for ALBANY to return home. Looking over to the heavy cruiser from FARGO bridge, it was easy to tell which ship was leav- ing and which remaining. It was a familiar sight to many of us; marine guard and band dazzling on the forecastle, heavy manila snaking off the bitts in silvery arcs, the majestic departure of the long grey hull to the strains of " Auld Lang Syne " . With the slow diminution of ALBANY ' S hull which is the way of parting ships, FARGO was flagship SIXTFi TASK FLEET. Finishing touches Seats for the minor wheels Water sports £ __ B 1 li ' BSc iiip 1 n yi - . x ' • • - Jitm ? 0 V: A0HNAI " Yesterday ' s ten thousand years " White against the violet Attic sky V ffl f i n. 7 r f t Z i ' - - .. i ( ' ! ! i ? Porch of the Maidens In honor of the King - 1 1, 4 ,,-« tf»- 45 ' fXl lf U. S. S. FARGO FLAGSHIP COMMANDER, SIXTH TASK FLEET 1 COMMANDER SIXTH TASK FLEET Since the beginning of recorded history the Mediter- ranean Sea has exerted a powerful and at times control- hng interest over the affairs of the entire world. In fact the known world of the ancients was bounded by the shores of the Roman " Mare Nostrum " . Strangely enough despite the exploration and expansion of the following centuries, this relatively small area still wields an ab- normally powerful force upon the destiny of mankind. The pure beauty of the Parthenon still stands white against the violet Attic sky, although the impoverished peasants who gaze upward to the hill no longer bear the stamp of Athenian conquerers. The transient laurel has long since withered from the heads of the Ceasars and the noble Romans have fallen upon evil days. These facts are self evident, however one must spend a while in this area to understand to what extent the people are inexorably linked with their historic past, and how great- ly concerned the United States of America must be about their future. Although the Mediterranean Na- tions as entities may not individually or collectively ' spell a threat to the security of our Nation, their prejudices and sympathies may well help to decide the fate of Western Civilization. The year round the long muzzled rifles of Task Force 160 bring cheer to those who in far distant harbors sup- port our way of life. The appearance of one cruiser does more than a hundred speeches to bear witness that we are here to stay. The presence of the fleet is tangible incontrovertible evidence of American industrv, friend- ship, and power. There is no more effective way of keeping the Amer- ican Flag and American prestige in the eves of this part of the world than by frequent visits of U. S. Naval Forces. From a hundred odd ports SIXTH Task Fleet ' s slim gray men o ' war " speak softly " and the officers and men act as ambassadors of good will. SIXTH Task Fleet ' s missions are many. Not in the least is the preservation in a strategic locale of a fast moving, hard hitting carrier task force, ready for any duty assigned. These extensive task force maneuvers with attendant flight operations, underway fueling, and provisioning provided excellent professional training for all hands. SIXTH Task Fleet also stands b} ' as the long arm of sup port to the thinning American garrisons in Europe. Ably commanded and outstandingly administered with the same selfless military skill that made the U. S. Fleet such a terrible foe in World War II, SIXTH Task Fleet is a vital force in the sea lanes of the Eastern At- lantic and Mediterranean. 48 FORREST P. SHERMAN Vice Admiral, United States Navy Commander Sixth Task Fleet 49 f w iiBR St wK STAFF OFFICERS. Front Row: LCDR H H. Anderson; CDR W C Abbot; CDR P. Belin; LTCOL S S. Berger; Capt. N K Dietrich; VADM F. P. Sherman; Capt. A. W. Wheelock; CDR P. L. Stahl; CDR C. A. Burch; LCDR J. T. T, O ' Neill; LCDR R. H. White. Back Row: SCLK V. Y. Jones; LTJC A. J. Hughes; LTJC M. A. Michael; LTJC E. M. Hammes; LT L. J Florence, LCDR E. J. Taylor; LTJC C. C. Heme; ENS N. Culetsky; ENS J. W. Clayton: CHRELEC A H. DeAngelo. Flag Division : i Ml T i mm i Reporting to Commander Sixth Task Fleet together with FARGO, and being part of us for the seven month ' s cruise, the 30 Musicians of the Staff Band were always regarded as our own musical organization. Chief Heller, a dynamic leader, militarily as well as musically, set the tempo for the group. They were always glad to become part of any FARGO function. Happy Hours, Church Services, Change of Command, and All Hands evolution saw the band or orchestra contributing that special color which music always adds. Most of all were we glad to hear them at our four ship ' s dances on the Riviera. " Outstanding " is the only way to describe their contribution. 51 rie le M On a promontory of the Northern Adriatic there is an historic battlement which broods quietly over a past that no future can ever equal, and in the evening solemnly regards the chain of lights far below outlining the piers of Porto di Trieste. In Trieste we found an occupied city well administered by our brothers in arms, the United States Army. We paid our respects to the TRUST detachment at the Army Day Parade, 6 April 1949, with a national salute and an honor guard of bluejackets and marines. In Trieste the lads also found the " Sugar Bowl " , " Colorado Club " , and other places too numerous to mention. In the eight days FARGO lay alongside Molo Bersaglieri a few of us visited the ancient Castello and some learned a little of the strong patriotic feeling and stormy existence of the people of the Free Territory of Trieste. VtNEZIA FARGO ' s stay in Venice w.is coo short to allow us to see much of what this fascinating city had to offer. A busman ' s holiday in a gondola was a " must " . There is something incongruous about a Boatswain ' s Mate loung- ing in a gondola, but then how was one to get around. Scuttlebutt has it that a greater footage of color tilm was shot in one day in Venice than in any preceding month. Shades of the poetry and pestilence of old Europe hung about the overly ornate Doge ' s Palace. The Bridge of Sighs looked just as it had in the picture on the wall of the spare room back home. The pigeons in Piazza San Marco are always a drawing card to the tourists but somehow our crew didn ' t seem interested in them — perhaps the resemblance to a low flying sea gull. It was here that Lt. Hanifin took his wrong way ferry ride up the Grand Canal, but that ' s another story. . . . A pigeon ' s eye view of FARGO 4 ' " Special " prices Gondola Americano Poetry of old Europe " 5 ■-T ■Is. fjifij 0. ran i f s| ■A A foreign uniform The port of Oran lies like a small pond at the foot of a giant. Surmounted by an old fort which commands the entrance, the massive headland falls off sharply into the sea and forms in its lee a quiet anchorage. The townspeople of Oran have been watching foreign " Men-o ' -war " enter their harbor since the 10th century. This once dominant city has seen the passing parade of shipping from the days of the Venetian traders through the assault of " Center Task Force " in World War II. FARGO also was closely surveyed from every tower and balcony as we entered port 9 May 1949. There was much speculation as to the type of people and architecture we would encounter here as this was the first African port visited by FARGO since 18 June 1947. We found the city divided into two sections; the old Spanish part and the contrasting modern area. We found the city colorful but quickly tiring. There were the natives, their shops and the historic home of the French Foreign Legion; but there were also the African heat, the mustv smell of decav, and the tlies. . . . Dubious A foreign Saint Probably made in Brooklyn A foreign age iclL y You have to watch Coogle closely The gashouse gang of the CPO quarters " Two and three " Hash marks 1949 model Sicilian " Good Humor " man Despite the intense heat experienced while at anchor oft Augusta, the snow-capped peak of Mt. Aetna glis- tened through the hazy distance. There wasn ' t much to do on liberty here, but if you had a penchant for the Southern Italians, the natives quickly became friends. Their close kinship with the Neapolitans was very much in evidence in their love of music and fireworks, their dislike of physical exertion and their childish enthusiam which they carry to their graves. FARGO was anchored at Augusta during her Sicilian visit, and many groups made tours to the ruins in near- by Syracuse. S J em You speak, Joe " EVIDENTLY IMPRESSED IN SYRACUSE BY THE GLORY OF THE PAST : - t» - .¥ " «c A i-rri... -n AND THE DESOLATION OF THE PRESENT I ¥ Bearing 250 position angle 20 (jDeyail ' pera torn Touring was only a very small part of it. The typical scenes reproduced below and on the following pages oc- curred time and time again during our cruise. In order to avoid repetition they are gathered and printed to- gether as if they occurred during one period of opera- tions with SIXTH Task Fleet, although we know that these exercises generally took place each time FARGO was undcrwav. The Marine landings were in all respects amphibious combat operations. These were particularly severe tests of the ship ' s readiness — and in each instance FARGO was ready. To the ships company the captions are unnecessary, for these memories are still fresh in our minds and some of the callouses are still on our hands. " Fantail, Conn — make smoke! ! " ;LiiMl; ] 61 Standby to transfer patient by highline Standby for firing run to starboard " Retire under cover of smoke " A 0800: Commence Scheduled Exercises 0900: FUEL SHIP C 1300: MAKE PREPARATIONS TO FUEL DESTROYER TO STARBOARD .. aC , 1500: EXERCISE AT RESCUE OF SURVIVORS iM 1600: Flisht Quarters Itt. ' 5 SECONDS . . . MARK " ON THE SLED CLEAR OF THE WATER 0800: All hands provision ship CALapoLL A busy man-o ' -war sees little cf a port during the hours of dayhght. In Napoli it is well that this is true, for under the eye of the merciless sun Naples is a dirty port; a crowded welter of rags and faded pastel mason- ry; the capital of poverty world renowned. Under the far kindlier aspect of night the magic of Napoli still lives. In the dark volcanic evening the orange rays of carriage lamps flicker behind thickened lenses and strains of " Santa Lucia " escape from some ob- scure accordion on the third floor balcony. To sit at twilight on Vomero Hill over a bottle of Bianca Capri and watch the twinkling necklace ring the Bay from the Castello to Posillipo is an experience which seems to transcend the boundaries of time. During our stay in Naples the Padre arranged several trips to the eternal city and Rome was voted second to none save Paris. While in Rome FARGO tourists were treated to an audience with Pope Pius XII. . , n M i¥ Memorial Day 1949 For others, there was Sorrento and world famous Capri. Pompeii, which some historians consider just as well destroyed, was a pleasant journey into our recollec- tions of high school Latin classes. Caprice Itallenne .t - f. ■n -- ' .• The magic ot Napoll THIS SQUARE IS WELL REMEMBERED AS WELL AS THE CASTELLO 68 The littered streets are warm long after sundown, and at midnight, the tired masonry of the castello still holds the heat. At 22i)() the " Eden Bar " and the " Snake Pit " are going full blast while in the streets a flood of Neapolitan accents fills the night. Small groups of black garbed women loudly exchange gossip under the electric glare of the many religious shrines which flicker into the late evening. At the landing, the incretlibly dirty regi- ment of peddlers and panhandlers, plies its dubious trade with the returning liberty parties. As one looks to seaward, the gray shape of FARGO is indistinct against the silver glitter of moonlight on the bay of Naples and the presence of Vesuvius with her misty cape is more sensed than seen above the distant lights of Castellamare. A hell of a loni; ride CONTRAST OF THE MODERN WITH THE ANCIENT ACE 69 Neopolitan street scene Kindlier aspect of night ua . 11 fl m ■ MID CRUISE BLUES Perhaps we are a bit misleading in picturing these months as a succession of uninterrupted touring. We worked hard, and there were the bad days to be endured as well as the pleasant ones to be enjoyed. Beach Guard and Shore Patrol duties were at times exhausting. Pro- visioning ship all day at 104 F was no easy task, but worst of all were the days in whic h we as a crew and as a ship gave our best and fell short of the target. How- ever, occasional disappointment sometimes does much more to weld ships spirit than constant success, and as the Bos ' n puts it " there are some days you just can ' t make a nickel " . There were other darker moments and there ' s not one of us who has not at one time or another asked as Abner Dean did — " What am I doing here " ??? Time began to drag somewhat after July. Most of the ports had become " Old Hat " particularly to the sec- ond cruise men, and carefully marked calendars were broken out with increasing frequency. It was a dis- turbing sense that crept upon us as we watched the glassy reflections in Suda Bay just before sunset, or tossed sleeplessly in the hot nights off Greece. It was a sense of sublimated loneliness although akin to pride; the pride of one who has watched the sun go down in a hundred alien harbors and has long felt upon his face the salt of far distant seas. Yes, we sweated out many a detail on this cruise — rating exams, mail call . . . even the cruise itself. One often felt as an exile from his native land; for seven months is a long time — 4,000 sea miles is a long way! And we knew that back home the wheels did not stop; that parents aged and kids grew, and life went on much the same, even though we were far away. But, on the whole, time ran its course quickly and in the routine of life at sea one day blended almost un- marked with the rest — July was almost over. . . . 1949 lUNE 1949 SUI MM THE wa THU ni UT , H 1949 JULY 1949 SUN HON rUE WB) TNU Fll UT " « ■ " U. KKsr Hi ! n t«r 2QSiK 9 Si 2« » 98 29 30 1949 AUGUST 1949 j SON NM TUE WED THU Fll UT 12 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 j 28 29 30 31 1949 SEPTEMBER 1949 HW MOM TOE WED THU Fll UT 12 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 ZL22 23 24 25 26 27muQ 30 71 cJke 1 aan " Separate me Saul and Barnabas for the work whereunto I have taken them. Acts 13. 2 The life of a Navy Chaplain is unique in the quest for souls. His parish is the ship; his diocese, the world. Laboring among FARGO men in a part of that diocese for the past seven months, our Padre has been privileged to follow the course of that greatest of seafaring Apostles, St. Paul. Thessalonia, Athens, Corinth, Crete, Syracuse, Malta, Rome— Now, not names in Sacred Scripture but cities and places engraven on the heart and memory giv- ing to Acts a new appreciation and reality. And imposing hands upon them they received the Holy Ghost Call to worship And he received all that came into him, preaching the kingdom of God. and teaching the thmgs which concern the Lord Jesus Chr.st w.th a I cont- dence without prohibition. ' Acts 28. 30-31 ' ..-J »U ., L , n . Mim in thp bre kinE of bread Oastwata After departing Naples 13 June, FARGO was again engaged in SIXTH Task Fleet operations enroute to ' illef ranche, France. On the Riviera from 1 8 June until 12 July with the exception of a five day session of fleet maneuvers, FARGO spent perhaps the most pleas- ant days of her entire cruise. " Fairest things have fleetest ends " and on the early afternoon of 1 2 July the cruiser ' s bow was wound slow- ly to seaward, all engines ordered " ahead standard " and departure taken with Cape Ferrat Light abeam to port, 800 yds. began the long trek to the eastward. Suda Bay Athens were revisited in that order, and after 2 more exercise periods, FARGO sailed across the Aegean the Dardanelles and Istanbul. I r . m . Istanb u ' - • ' V. ♦ It was a tortuous passage through the Strait of Dar- danelles flanked close aboard by the hazy green fields of late afternoon. As darkness fell FARGO set her course across the Sea of Marmara. Out of the early morning mist of 27 July rose the domes and minarets of one of the most historic cities in the world. Leaving Leander ' s Tower abeam to star- board, we swung into the swift current of the Bosphorus and we could sense that we were well within the pale of the East. Numerous shrieking ferryboats (which the Turkish commuters use as New Yorkers do the subway) passed close aboard as we maneuvered to our anchorage. Liberty here was pleasant and most interesting. The mosque of St. Sophia is a strange and beautiful mixture of Christian and Pagan artistry. The famed bazaar, formerly the sultan ' s stables, carried a strong (at times overpowering) flavor of Asia. The Turkish people were very friendly and a surprisingly large number spoke English. Fifty of FARGO ' s crew attended an open air presentation of the opera " Madame Butterfly " as guests of the city. All hands seemed to blossom forth with meerschaums overnight and many self styled pipe experts materialized as quickly. Talking Turkey The influence of the West is dominant in modern Istanbul. There seem to be more 1949 American autos here than in a city of comparable size in the states. " Steer upstream coxswain " Meerschaum shoppers ' ' w v ■ s.- Dolme Bache landing fi «lfcipn x You can ' t read it anyway The Park Hotel will rival the best in the world (particu- larly after two " screwdrivers " ). There were some tours for the " tourists " and a trip up the Bosphorus was almost mandatory. Beyond the mine net lav the Black Sea and the soil of Russia. There must be something up there MEAT BALL of the greatest honors ever accorded .1 hip in the he award of the " Battle Efficiency Pennant " fa- miharly known as the " Meat Ball " . Each ship which flies this pennant from her foremast has proven herself superior to others of her type in overall performance and battle readiness for the period of the preceding year. On the afternoon of .H) July, while at anchor off Is- tanbul, Turkey, FARGO received the following message from Rear Admiral J. H. Foskett, Commancfer Cruiser Division FOUR: " MY WARMEST CONGRATULA- TIONS ON YOUR HAVING WON BATTLE PEN- NANT FOR COMPETITION YEAR 1949 X WELL DONE " . We had been too busy to do much thinking about it. At this time we were working to prepare ourselves for our Operational Readiness Inspection scheduled for the middle of August. The word that FARGO had been selected for this award meant a lot to us all. The note from our departing skipper which appeared in the plan of the day for 1 August meant much more: " The past year in Command of FARGO has been the most gratifying year of my service in the Navy. I have seen FARGO develop and the spirit rise to a point where I believe she has no peer in the United States Fleet. My personal satisfaction which I experience is nothing com- pared to what this means to you. Your willingness and efforts have netted FARGO the Battle Efficiency Pen- nant. This is true recognition of what you have made of our ship. To all hands I say ' Well Done ' . To all hands I wish continued success and wish for FARGO a repeat of the award for 1950. " W. F. Petersen .»« Well done!! r M 78 73 A i A great Skipper 1 ■ . ' I " -I ' { n y ,,-. ' • I - If A loyal crew ■rr " I relieve you, sir " 80 Upon completion of a tour of duty with the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington, D. C, Captain Chester C. Wood, U. S. Navy was ordered to reheve Captain Petersen as Commandmg Officer of FARGO. Captam Wood joined the ship on 3 August in Salonika, Greece. On the following day, after many details incident to relieving command were accom- plished, the crew was mustered at quarters for Captain ' s Inspection and assembled aft for the change of command ceremony. A warm breeze stirred sluggishly over the harbor of Salonika as the Battle Efficiency pennant was formally presented to FARGO by Vice Admiral Sherman. Each of us felt a glow of pride as we watched that pennant break at the fore and flap idly in the light airs. Following the breaking of the " Meat Ball " the formal transfer of command began. In the dazzling glare of the khaki and white on the fantail, the terse phraseology of the orders were intoned and the ship welcomed aboard a new skipper. " Five gongs, FARGO " sounded the last time that afternoon for Captain Petersen. Many hands came topside to see our former skipper leave the ship. On the quarterdeck the Captain said goodbye to each of the officers with whom he had served this memorable year and with his handshake came a deep sense of personal loss. As the gig roared away toward the landing a strong, steady, but very friendly hand had completed his trick at the helm. Born in Baltimore, 5 July 1903, Captain W ood spent his early youth in that city. In 1924 he was graduated from the U. S. Naval Academy and served his years as junior officer aboard combatant ships in both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Captain Wood ' s first command was the destroyer, U.S.S. BRISTOL which he placed in commission and commanded throui h the first ' ear of World War II during which the ship was engaged in convoy and ASW duties. The second year of the war found him assigned as Operations Officer and later Chief of Staff to the U. S. Admiral in command of our naval forces in the Iceland - Greenland - Newfoundland area. Duty as Assistant Naval Aide to President Franklin D. Roosevelt followed which involved responsibility for the White House map room (the intelligence and communication center for the Commander-in-Chief ' s use). Late in 1944 Captain Wood became Squadron Commander of a squadron of 2200 ton destroyers engaged in combat operations in the Pacific area. Since the war varied responsible assignments followed; liaison duty in connection with negotiations with Soviet forces in the Far East, super- vision of the surrender of Japanese Naval forces in Southern Korea and then duty at Washington, D. C. in the office of Judge Advocate General, next at the National War College, and hnalK ' with the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Commanding U.S.S. FARGO from 3 August until 13 October 1949, Captain Wood was detached in view of FARGO ' s prospective decommis- sioning and ordered to command U.S.S. ALBANY (CA-123 ) . 82 ' l m ii CAPTAIN CHESTER C. WOOD, U. S. NAVY Commanding U.S.S. FARGO Navy Cross — Legion of Merit — Commendation Ribbon — French Legion of Honor — French Croix de Guerre. An able commander, an experienced tactician, a dis- tinguished gentleman. Captain Wood quickly won the respect and loyalty of FARGO ' s officers and men. Dur- ing his tenure on board Captain Wood most ably carried on the tradition of the " meat ball command " , and it is our hope and expectation that his new ship U.S.S. AL- BANY will soon be flying this coveted pennant. 83 Suoa 3, aij •:. I MAIL Even now, most of us can close our eyes and easily recall the high barren hills and quiet waters of Suda Bay. Our visits here were spent recuperating from one operation or preparing for the next one. General visiting was allowed on Sundays and in Suda Bay it was jokingly said that the number of natives visiting the ship was larger than the number of FARGO sailors going ashore. Although a few hardy souls ven- tured over into Khania, shore liberty was not very in- spiring and there wasn ' t much to do after 1630 except sit around and gripe about the excessive heat and the scarcity of mail. AND SWIMMING CALL •r 84 SHIPS SOFTBALL TEAM FARGO Softball team enjoyed an outstanding sea- son, winning a total of 32 games and dropping only 11. FARGO whipped every ship in the SixthTaskFleet at least once, as well as taking the measure of many visit- ing teams. Outstanding players throughout the year were the pitchers Kipp and Woody, as well as heavy hitting Vargo and Graham behind the plate. The whole team played together with an aggressive spirit and won many games by slugging its way to the top from behind. I7 85 DIVISION SOFTBALL CHAMPS A rough and tough ABLE Division won the division Softball championship by smashing out two 9-3 conquests over the BAKER team. Stevenson and Tollers were the battery in both games for " A " opposing Sk.isko and Bitts for " B " . ABLE Division led the league most of the year but were edged out in the hnal week only to surge back in the tournament and tight their way to the top. The twenty-two teams in the ship ' s league pla ed over }00 games during the cruise. THE DIVISION WIU NEUfC fOkQn SPENCE j 86 OUR PRIDE ANDTOy- . " WHISPER " TEEHAN COULD ANXONt EVER FOR6£r THAT " BROOKLYN KNOW- MOW " Ht " U5£D TO THROW AROUND ILL NEVER FORGET THE TIME HASTY INVITED ME TO TRY ONE OF HIS " BOILER- MAKERS " - A BEER GLASS FULL OF Gin and a JIGGER GLA55 " FULL " OF BEER. ' I HAD TROUBLE FOCUSING MY EVES LATER, too WHO WILL DISPUTE THE FACT THAT VARTEBEDIAN , WAS FARGO ' S YO-YO CHAMP REMEMBER PLAYING YO-YO WITH THE " GOONEY BIRD " ? SANDERS AND HIS METHOD OF " BROADCASTING " WITHOUT MICROPHONE WE THOUGHT THAT GATOR AYLESWORTH IVA5 ASLEEP, BUT— REMEMBER THE 5H)P ' S DANCE; ■sS WHO COULD FORGET ACE COVINGTON ' N5-4 MOTOR LAUNCH WAS ALL HE LIVED FOR - HE WOULD OFTEN REFER TO IT A5 ENS. D£8ANY ' 5 FLAGSHIP ' : a EVERY SHIP HAS THEIR MAD RUSSIAN - " FRENCHY ' ' DEMARS WAS ours GEORGE MILLER WAS BOTH " CRAZY " AND " HONEST " — REMEMBER THAT •FULL DRESS " AFFAIR N VILLEFRANCHE, AND THOSE ANCHOR Pools f W , BUZZ " (DON JUAN) BAUSOLA, WAS ONE OF FARGO ' 5 MOST DISTINGUISHED ?i 1 " CHARACTERS " - BUT WILL HE EVER FORGET DEE " , THE GIRL WHO JUST WOULDN ' T LET HIM GO WILL " MflLLETHEAD ' OLSEN EVfR FORGET THAT EPISODE IN I NEW BRUNSWICK. THEN THERE WAS " HOSE N0S£ " D|BIAH -BUT THE CARTOON WILL SPEAK FOR ITSELF WILL KJEVER FOR6ET TREESE AND HIS UNIQUE WAY OF PASSING THE WORD ' REMEMBER ICDR GC " HACK ' S LOVE FOR TOURING, — ENS. PJ GOLDMAN AND HIS " COMMUNICATION UNIT " WILL HE EVER FORGET THOSE FOUR B0rrLE5 OF CHAMPAGNE — LT. " ho. WEBSTER ' S MAD FLIGHT TO PAREE -tT. " SILENT JOHN " bain ' s ' S06ER " REfURN TO THE SHIP ONE " Gfir " morniwg: -THE TIME ENS.TI..D£BANr REFUSED TO LEF THE PREFECT AND THE PRESIDENT OF GENOA 60ARD,THlNK|M6 THEM T0 6E SMESNBnJ THEN TIJERE WAS ADMIRAL CRUZEN — BUT THAT3 ANOTHER STORY - RC e)iCEi-S, ' «R - LT (16) CHUCK " G CASON " technicolor " eyes at breakfast which usually lasted until he got •jA ASHORE again rou 7 NEVER DID KNOW ' H WHETHER HE WAS COMING FROM OR GOING ON SHORE LEAVE -THOSE NIGHTLY STRATEGIC " NAVAL ' M ANUEVERS BY LCOR. " TEX " ONEiLL , LT. " M.«. " WFBSTtR , lt (jc) " GE£K " HAMmes, i.CDR. " BIO eo " TAYLOR, AND OF COURSE, „ - - - LT. ' THE COMMODORE BtANTON ' — CDR. ' RIP ' WINKEL ' s COMPLETE " INSPEcnONS ' TWIEHi s " Ci s e p - ' . . ' - i T fgS- ?iM K ■Of . Vll Mess Cook ' s scuttlebutt is exceeded in value only by the dope put out by the boys of Radio I and the question most often asked at the beginning of each cruise is, " How often do we hit Southern France? " In the south of France fronn St. Tropez to Menton stretches a coastline beloved not alone to the crew of FARGO. Christened the " Blue Coast " by the French, and better known by the name " Riviera, " this region is a zone of sparkling azure waters, sun drenched skies; and a score of pleasant ports. We spent the first of our four trips to the Riviera in Cannes from the 23 rd to the 29th of April. Cannes is remembered mostly for the two thousand yachts in the harbor and the extravagant prices on the beach. It was here at the Hotel Martinez that we held our first ship ' s dance of the cruise. Nice was more px)pular with most of us and we became acquainted with the Promenade des Anglais, Ruhl Bar, Plantation Club, and other local spots (the public library closed early). On July 4th the U. S. Naval forces in the area staged a parade in which the FARGO Landing Force and Marine Detachment did their part to impress the crowds of spectators of all nations with the type of men who marched behind the stars and stripes. Monte Carlo and its casino had lost none of its charm and merited at least one visit. It is here on the stretch of seaside highway from Beaulieu to Monaco that the Cote d ' Azur has truly earned its name. To a man, I believe, that we have come to love a little fishing village best of all. Villefranche sur-Mer, where time stopped centuries ago, has been host to FARGO most often. Who can explain the undeniable charm of this small port hanging on the sea slope of the Alpes Martinies? Authors have tried but only partially succeeded. Artists have only come slightly closer to capturing its elusive spirit in the play of light on clear water and the softness of almost extinct colors of the peasant countenances of the ancient buildings. It is around this harbor that most memories gather. Remember the 2345 beer at the " 01 " level or the sandwich monstrosities at the Bar Nautic while stalling for the last liberty boat. Remember the steaks at the little restaurant at the top of the hill, and the amber glass of cognac in the late afternoon at the " Welcome " Bar. And always too quickly our allotted time passed and the word " Station the special sea and anchor detail " tolled sadly in our ears. To explain this to one who has never been here is impossible, and to you who have visited this enchanted land an explanation is equally unnecessary . . . The entire portrait is essentially personal but is compounded in part of the perfumes of Grasse which in the evening float seaward on the offshore breeze, of the pleasant warmth of the afternoon sunshine on " Blue Beach, " of the air of fragile gaiety which ends so soon. % . z fT: _ ..- f LA TOUR 119K INFMA EDOUaRD Vlf, f -: ' - - I. The Public Library closes early You can see this back in the States Acquainted with the promenade ' tl iK 2JL Mii FARCO Ijndin;; lorce .. . On Julv Fourth VILLEFRANCHE MER And the days passed as softly as the trail of cloud shadows on the beach at Juan-les-Pins. Many a fleeting afternoon evaporated into history as we strolled the narrow hillside streets of Villefranche or watched the twilight descend upon the Promenade des Anglais from our observation post on the Ruhl Terrace. Many a fleeting afternoon Honest George and friends NICE irr_ c. £a (JlaeUianlc TONY RAINAUD MAX MARINO AVEC 7 1630: Liberte Flagship Bum Ron 6 Chopsticks Oram and the old Navy Came ' 1 m 7 ■0 Puzzled spectator £nC£ PI LOIS 98 Favorite anchorage Pl.iisir d ' .imiiur ne dure qu ' un moment Chagrin d ' .imour dure route la vie . . . French song Chanel, all flavors 99 As a floating part of the United States we have, for these past months, helped keep the ideal of America in the thoughts of the Mediterranean world. We have in a sense helped to sell democracy to the countries we have visited. . . . and have lived it ourselves ! ! Although she is a " taut ship " , paradoxically enough, there is more real democracy in FARGO than in your own hometown. It is a democracy of devotion to the common welfare, the good of the ship; without the slightest sacrifice of discipline. Despite all regulations ever issued, no crew will perform as FARGO ' s has with- out inspiration, loyalty and respect; and these must be well earned. There is more than a mutual pride in our ship and our crew. There is a feeling of strong friend- ship and loyalty up and down, trom the Captain on the bridge to the lifebuoy watclton the fantail. This is a spirit born of patriotic devotion to the Navy and welded by long service together far from home. This is the " FARGO SPIRIT " . This is why FARGO has been such an outstanding ambassador of good will in the Mediterranean. This is how the large number of friends acquired by FARGO ' s crew have come to know and respect the American way of life. This is why the people in a score of Mediterranean ports cherish fondly the memories of their acquaintance with FARGO ' s men. This is why there will be many in Naples, Athens, Nice, and the rest who will be sorry to know that FARGO will never visit them again. 100 Monte arlo f. «aa ' . r- . . . Monte Carlo had lost none of its charm 4 Casino de Chance mm: avi uYie JL .!i. ' ■-.■- iL j Biifr ' f ' KR M ' -m ' •• T. • N B O L JACQUELIN! 4 MnMOcc _ OF " T )CTEMDS n HEQPTY SHIP ' S DANCE VILlEFi ANCHE 3«P i 4-_ " sepT. We first saw Gibraltar as a gray shape against a darker sky on the day we entered the Mediterranean. However we did not get a chance to look around ashore until May 12 lArhen the ships assembled here for the purpose of relieving SIXTH Task Fleet Units. Our seagoing companions of the past months vere relieved during this period and headed westward ■while FARGO acquired a ne ' w group of running mates. Built around the ' west ' ward base of the huge rock, the town of Gibraltar is unique and characterized by narrow crowded streets, clusters of Hindu shops laden with ' worthless trinkets, and the bars vith all girl orchestras imported from La Linea. The military defenses are by far the most important single aspect of the scene and many tours of these installations were ar- ranged by the Chaplain. From the higher levels of the rock it is an inspiring sight to w atch the sun drop into the Atlantic Ocean behind the Spanish mainland. Memories of Drake and Nelson are revived by the small cemetery near the South Post Gates and none can fail to here render a salute to the spirit and tradition of the British Empire. The Britisli Spirit m A THE LONG VOYAGE HOME And now only 3 days of SIXTH Task Fleet exercises lay between FARGO and Gibraltar. Underway in the early afternoon of 12 September, the shoreline of the Riviera and then the Maritime Alps themselves soon dropped over the horizon astern. As we proceeded toward Gibraltar and watched the smart seamanlike performance of the ships in company, it was impossible not to appreciate how much this cruise had done to improve the fighting qualities of each of the many units which had been with us the past 4 months. It was also quite natural to speculate upon the probable impending troubles of the ships who were then enroute across the Atlantic to relieve us at Gibraltar. The fate of the OOD ' s of the relieving ships; under Admiral Sherman ' s all discerning eye was also discoursed upon at great length by the watch on the bridge. U.S.S. DES MOINES, relief flagship arrived with the remainder of the relieving ships on 1 8 September the day after FARGO tied up at Gibraltar. FARGO was shifted to a berth alongside DES MOINES and the transfer of SIXTH Task Fleet staff began. Numerous hies, much office equipment and many ' TARGO " towels found their way quickly over to DES MOINES. The day before SIXTH Task Fleet ' s flag was otficiallv hauled down was designated as " be kind to the Staff Day " , in view of their imminent departure. In spite of the large amount of jocular abuse constantly ex- changed between ships company, and staff we were really sorry to see the staff leave. In our six months to- gether we had all come to know each other well and ashore we were all shipmates from FARGO. At noon on the I ' th of September, Admiral Sher- man ' s personal flag was broken at the main truck of DES MOINES and FARGO hauled down the three starred symbol which she had flown since March. Rear Admiral J. H. Foskett, USN, Commander Cruiser Division FOUR, broke his flag in FARGO at 0800 on the morning of the day of departure. At 0830 Vice Admiral Sherman returned aboard briefly to say good bye to the ship and her crew. At 0900 the word which had been awaited for seven months was passed over the " P. A. " system — " Now station all the special sea and mooring detail. " " Pilot house, one long blast on the bugle " . . . the tugs were warping FARGO away from alongside and the strip of disturbed water widened as the wet lines came aboard. The long voyage home had begun. . . . it ir ir 110 DECOMMISSIONING We had known for the past six months that this cruise would be FARGO ' s most memorable one. ' e did not know until very recently that it would be her last. There had been rumors concerning FARGO ' s decom- missioning; many ot them, but aboard ship there are always rumors and individually tailored scuttlebutt is as free as salt water. We were confident when FARGO had escaped the recently issued schedule of ships to be decommissioned, that she would survive to return once more to her old cruising ground. But as " Guns " says, " It never happened. " A Naval dispatch whether changing the uniform of the day or announcing the loss of a ship in action is a masterpiece of impersonal, mechanical brevity. There was the proper minimum of words in the message re- ceived by radio on 20 September informing FARGO that she would be directed to New York for decom- missioning shortly after arrival in U.S.A. It was origin- ally intended to await some further confirmation before passing this information on to all hands. However keep- ing this " hot dope " off the FARGO grapevines was about as hopeless a task as trying to silence a storekeeper whose name has been left off the liberty list. We weren ' t sure however until we heard the " Old Man " speak to us after quarters on the morning of 21 September one day west of Gib. It was a sunless, Atlan- tic morning with a hint of rain. The swells were the typical low long undulations so often found near the Azores. Occasionally one tired crest higher than its fellows would clear the main deck and spend its rem- nants against the base of turret I. ' e in the FOX Divi- sion grouped ourselves around the loud speaker on the main deck portside aft of 5 " Mount No. 2. Over the P.A. system the Captain outlined to ships company the information which the ship had received concerning im- minent decommissioning. The skipper continued " Needless to say, I share with you a sense of great personal loss. I hate to see a fine ship like this — one that is practically brand new — laid up in mothballs — probably never to sail again, except in case of war. And 1 hate much more — icry much more — to see this splendid ship ' s company dis- banded, and its indomitable spirit lost to the Navy — and to the Nation — forever. The FARGO may go back into commission at some later date, and the ship ' s company of then may have a splendid spirit, but it will not be the same spirit that we know today. A spirit such as we now have, can never be brought to life again, once it has been allowed to die. But that is the way it must be. We are not going to like the task of decommis- sioning this ship. It will be arduous and sad. It will mean the breaking of bonds of friendship which have been pleasant and inspiring. It will spell the end of an era marked by hard and loyal work on your part which is symbolized by the Meatball pennant which we will proudly fly right up to the moment of decommissioning, and by lots of fun as well. During the weeks ahead we will be tearing down — instead of building up — and this is never pleasant. However, I am completely confident that you will tackle this job as you have tackled all others — and that you will give it your very best — the same ' best ' that won the Meatball — and the same ' best ' that made FARGO the splendid flagship that she has been for the past six months. This may be an unpleasant job — but when we get through with it, it will be a good job well done. We will show all hands that we are worthy of our reputation as a ' can do ' ship. In the meantime you can be rest assured that I will do all in my power to make the task as pleas- ant as it can possibly be made. You can also be rest assured that I will do all in my power to get every member of the ship ' s com- pany the job he wants when his days in FARGO are finished. And any Skipper that gets one of you in his command will be a lucky fellow — you have a lot to give. His gain will be my loss. And so, as we steam back to some East Coast port — probably Newport, but possibly New York, let each one of us determine that he will do his part in keeping FARGO the same smart, proud ship that she is today, right up to the bitter end. Thank you very much. " Well, that was it. We glanced at (jur shipmates and up toward the bridge as the superstructure swung slowly gray against gray of the Atlantic overcast. Despite what the Captain said, and he was right, there was a brief sense of frustration and futility upon us all. The shrill of the boatswain ' s pipe cut through our reverie. " Turn to " was passed and we moved off to our cleaning stations. . . . lir 1 ii 111 The Editor. raS rs ::4re-i - iusu.,.. ...pites -ve |one o,e « f;, ,.) .ounyo;; - 4-- ! transfer papars l % ji,, with regret ! » „ie jged bre-.ity " " :r-.So is ' sh:r;. t i. " v -r-o. " -- v; rerSai - :-::tt-fe;.l- rr refsSri, expee that .e shaU ,, sinoerely hope _ „ , , ,S have a cup of Joe or a l . ntly aears .ne co , " jrrS er-rue 4= «. Ust »e vjill be I 0. VfSBSTBH LT, USls inai Many ot us will be spared the sorrow of seeing FARGO tied up tor the last time. It is not pleasant to thus look upon the proud ship which carried us safely over 200, UOd nautical miles, and was our home tor more than two years. The fact that it must he done does not make it any easier to seal her jjuns and abandon her once hvely hull to the landbound custody of time. While the " Queen of the Seas " (as Lt. Dooge called her) drowses in the pallid sunshine of early Spring or strains at her frozen mooring lines in the Northerly off the Hudson there will ever remain with her the ghosts of soft nights in the shadow of N ' esuvius, of the impos- sible brilliance of Caribbean moonlight, of the tread upon her decks of a glorious ships company who gave FARGO the life which was hers. Old ships like old soldiers, never die. . . . There are those who say that sailors are not senti- mental. Personally I believe they are the worst of the lot. This we know; FARGO will live and sail again in reminiscence as long as an ' of her otficers or men remain to muster with the living. . . . i -7 THE STAFF EDITOR Lieutenant Harvey O. Webster, Jr., USN ASSISTANT EDITOR Ensign Joseph F. Shunk., USNR ART Ensign Tewfik L. Debany, USNR Charles B. Gusky, SN John W. Keegan. SN BUSINESS ASSISTANTS Lt. Arthur Major, USN Lt. Michael M. MacInnes, (CHC), USNR PHOTOGRAPHY LCDR George F. Britner, USN Arthur Murray, PH3 CLERICAL ASSISTANTS Edward I. Pennewill, YNSN Harry Wald, SN The " Cruise Log " project began very inauspiciously in Wardroom Stateroom No. 3 09. The greater part of this " Log " was conceived and executed in this small living compartment on the third deck. With each port visited the volume of photographs and copy grew and eventually usurped the drawers wherein Major ' s and Webster ' s articles of clothing customarily reposed. However, after three months of the ship ' s laundry policy of " 3 for " , stowage space for clothing became a less critical factor. We feel that this cruise was such an unforgettable one that it demands some me- mento more lasting then personal reminiscence. We expect that in years to come this volume will bring back strongly the memories of the past seven months. Instead of compiling a factual history, we have merely tried to capture the spirit which was FARGO, February 28 to September 28, 1949. We hope that we have, in some small measure, succeeded. --vvvv . . ---- " " kSi ' a CRUISE OF U. S. S. FARGO PORT Newport, R. I. Athens, Greece Athens, Greece Argostoli, Greece Free Territory of Trieste Venice, Italy Genoa. Italy Golfe Juan, France Cannes, Frances V illcfraiiche, France Oran, Algeria Gibraltar Augusta, Sicily Naples, Italy Naples, Italy Villefranche, France Villefranche, France Suda Bay, Crete Athens, Greece Istanbul, Turkey Salonika, Greece Suda Bay, Crete Suda Bay, Crete Naples, Italy Villefranche, France Gibraltar Newport, R. I. ARRIVED March 14, 1949 March 24, 1949 March 26, 1949 April 1, 1949 April 9, 1949 April 16, 1949 April 21, 1949 April 2 3, 1949 April 29, 1949 May 9. 1949 May 12, 1949 May 22, 1949 May 2 8, 1949 June 3, 1949 June IS, 1949 July 1, 1949 July 16, 1949 July 2 1, 1949 July 27, 1949 August 2, 1949 August 5, 1949 August 12, 1949 August 19, 1949 September 2, 1949 September 15, 1949 September 28, 1949 DEPARTED February 28, 1949 March 21, 1949 March 2 ' 5, 1949 March 28, 1949 April 9, 1949 April 11, 1949 April 20, 1949 April 23, 1949 April 29, 1949 May 2, 1949 May 11, 1949 May 17, 1949 May 27, 1949 May 31, 1949 June 13, 1949 June 27, 1949 July 12, 1949 July 20, 1949 July 2 ' , 1949 August 1, 1949 August 4, 1949 August 8, 1949 August 15. 1949 August 29, 1949 September 12, 1949 September 20, 1949 t I This book published at no expense to the U. S. Government Printed in the United States of America BY The Horn-Shafer Company. Baltimore, Md. 1 l) ■J R M A N I A ■. 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