USS SALT LAKE CITY USMC DETACHMENT
Sept. 13. 1929 - Left Norfolk for Philadelphia
Dec.9, Came aboard ship
Dec. 11 - Ship commissioned Was Admiral Latimer's orderly
Dec. 16 Made Private First Class
Jan. 20, 1930
Ship left drydock 1300. Anchored in river for about an hour. Weighed anchor at 1428 and shoved off for the breakwater. Had a 12 to 4 watch - Captain's orderly. Anchored inside of Delaware breakwater about 2030.
Ship at anchor inside of breakwater all day. Weighed anchor at 1800 and shoved off for New York. Had emergency drills including fire drill; collision, and abandon ship. Wrote to Lill while on 1264 watch last night.
Under way all last night. Dropped anchor somewhere in the river outside of New York at 800.
At anchor all day. Ellis Island not for off
Weighed anchor at 800 and left for Newport, NI. Averaged about 22 or 23 knots per hour. Good sailing. Got on "Howly's
list for piping of about Neptune's Rex(?) Anchored at Newport at 1700. Captain's gig run aground about 1900. Colder than hell up here in this country. Am ready for tropical.
Went ashore yesterday afternoon and came back about 2000 in the gig. There are some good beer joints in Newport and the beer is much better than that sold in Camden. Lots of boot gobs aboard today.
Sunday - on watch today. Skipper didn't come aboard this morning.
Had another fire today. A spark from the incinerator set fire to the wings of plane on starboard gun deck. Wings on starboard side had all fuselage burned from them. Got a letter from Lill. Weather still cold and snowing. Gobs loaded war heads for torpedoes today. Had another fire call at 2000. Just a dummy run as it was put out even before the call was given.
On watch 12 to 4. Skipper had an admiral for a visitor. Commander received an autographed picture from Clara Bow for the Officers of the Salt Lake City.
Skipper suddenly decided to go back to Phila to repair safety valves. Leave Newport at 1800.
Got to the Delaware breakwater about 800 this morning. Went through a storm last night and the water was kind of rough. The ship has been doing a lot of rolling but I was in my hammock and didn't notice it. Several gobs back aft are seasick. Docked at the New York ship yard, Camden at 1600. Lots of snow.
The last day of the month and also payday. Drawed $15 and went to Phila. Called up Lill but she wasn't home. Got a letter and picture from her today.
The day after payday and a few of the fellows feeling blue. Didn't even have a glass of beer last night. On guard today.
I went to West Phila but didn't turn out so good. Did not like service men, especially Sailors and Marines. Key Captain's orderly found asleep on post by Mr. Oelch? Going up for Captain's mast. Probably get a summary.
Marines started signal drill and automatic weapons school again. J. A. Wood, Jr. made private first class.
Hayes went ashore last night and didn't come back this morning. Rumor has it that he is in the brig along with several others. Hayes got 25 or 30 days. Lieut Monahan bailed him out. The popular song in this detachment is now "What kind of birds don't fly".
Locker box inspection. General drills this morning.
Helluva day from start to finish. Work all day and get hell about everything besides. Orderlys unsatisfactory. Haley got to dam many orders to give for just a corporal even if he is police sergeant.
On watch today. Nothing going on except field day.
Captain's inspection. Everything very good. Went to the "Y" and met Lill.
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On watch again, 12 to 4. Skipper didn't come aboard today as it is Sunday.
Left Camden 1200
Arrived at Hampden Road about 7:30 this afternoon. We got four replacements and about 20 more for the fleet at Guantanamo Bay. Mostly recruits.
Left Hampden roads 7:30. Had General Quarters for the first time. Sea smooth all day. Weather much warmer than Philadelphia.
Underway all day. Had 8 to 10 watch. Ship has been doing a lot of rolling though the sea isn't rough. McKinney had to be relieved from watch. Several others seasick. Sighted San Salvador light house about 2400.
Had General Quarters this morning. Sighted Cuba about 1200. Looks like a lot of hills from here. Expect to anchor this afternoon. Pulled into the bay about 1700. Tied up to the Sapelo about 1830 to take on fuel oil.
Anchored in Guantanamo Bay. Uniform is skivvy shirts as the weather is hot as hell. Had the 12 to 4 watch. Rear Admiral Clarke came aboard for about 3/4 of an hour. Several Captains and other officers visited the ship during the day.
Left Guantanamo Bay at 1100 Sunday this morning for Battle Wagons came in. The New York, Texas, Florida and Wyoming. Weather hot as hell. Saw a lot of porpoises just after leaving the bay. Got real ambitious and washed two shirts, field scarfs, belt, pair of trousers, shined shoes and four leather belt. Cleaned rifle and bayonet. Tonight have to take a bath and be all ready for tomorrow's guard. Sighted Haiti about four o'clock this afternoon.
Still following coast of Haiti. Lots of flying fish in these waters. General quarters again this morning.
Passed Porto Rico last night. Passed the lights of San Juan about 4:30 this morning. Anchored at Culebra, Virgin Islands at 8:00. Small place but pretty. Small beaches and palm trees.
Today is hot as hell itself but can't go swimming as I'm on watch. Everybody on the ship is working, mostly painting to get the ship ready for Rio. Wrote to Lill today.
Worked all day pumping air to the divers. What I mean it was work out there in the tropical sun. Am all sunburned and look like a beet. This air pump business is a job for a man with a strong back so I guess that's why they picked on me. We leave here tomorrow morning.
* Feb. 21
Saw my record book this morning and it is pretty good. 4-5-5-4.7 and no offenses. Left Culebra at 900. Sea is a bit choppy but the ships is riding good.
Passed Island of Martinique island this morning. Fired a salute today noon in honor of Washington. Had Turkey today but it looked more like turkey buzzards.
Sunday. Nothing to see but sea and a few flying fish. Still hot and getting hotter. Shellbacks starting to talk in mysterious manners and low whispers.
Still no land in sight. Have on hell of a headache today. Pollywog talking of mutiny and some of the shellbacks are getting worried especially the top - kick. Clocks changed ahead one hour again tonight.
General drills in A.M. and formation of landings party in P.M. One hell of a day.
Crossed the "Line" at 1705 today. The shellbacks sure raised plenty of hell and had some dandy make-ups. Top kick was judge. Nearly everyone got in the chair and were then dumped over backwards into a pool of salt water. As soon as they landed in the water, shellbacks ducked them and smeared them with black graphite. I got my share. Some visited the doctor and were given some bad tasting medicine. Others had their hair cut. As a result nearly everyone aboard the Salt Lake City is a shellback. Slept in a cot for the first time aboard ship. Guess I hold the record for sleeping in an hammock. Someone stole my hammock stick or I would still be sleeping in it.
Hot all day today. Good breeze on top side though, which makes it nice.
Hot as hell. Worked hard all day. Passed Pernambuco, Brazil last night during my watch from 12 to 4.
Mar. 1, 1930
Hotter than ever today. registered 90 degrees in the shade this afternoon. Captain's inspection today. Marines all in fine shape.
Payday! but no place to spend it. Tomorrow is the big day, however, as we get to Rio in the morning. Hot as hell and no relief in sight.
Got to Rio this morning. It is all mountains, but is the most beautiful place I've ever seen. Sugar loaf mountain is right at the entrance of the harbor. Had lots of visitors aboard today. Didn't go ashore as I'm on guard today.
What a night. Everyone came in drunk as hell but happy. Lt. Milner said "Keep the boats full of gas and the ship will run itself." Sgt. Groubkatis came aboard carrying his shoes in hand and asked the OD permission to come aboard.
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What a night. Went ashore yesterday and got to feeling pretty dam good on beer, Met a few Portuguese who talked English and treated Steges and I to beer. Everyone was dressed in some costume and or in disguise and were all having a big time. Never saw anything like it before. Women by dozens and good looking. Am on guard today and sure know it as it is hotter than ever and I don't feel so good either.
Rendered honors again today to an Admiral, a Captain (Venezuelan)and a couple of other officers, also Brazilian. Members of the U. S. Naval Mission were also aboard. Weather is suffocating down here. Clothes just stick to the body. Went out to the red light district nothing like it in the states) I don't know where it fits in.
Went ashore and had a lot of beer
Stood by on guard today for about 16 hours
Went up Sugarland mountain and it was sure worth the money. Could see nearly all of Rio.
On Guard today. Portuguese friend came aboard and invited Steges and I out for a beer party tomorrow night.
Drank a lot of beer but came back to the ship about 7 O'clock. Got two compacts for souvenirs.
On guard. Lots of visitors as usual.
Off guard but not going ashore. No more mil (military?) not sure of this word, looks like Nein. Couple of speck Admirals aboard this morning.
Big reception aboard this afternoon. About 500 prominent Brazilians and Americans came aboard.
Left the dock and took a short speed run out to sea taking 163 Brazilian officers with us. We also had three Admirals and the Ambassador with us. Full guard and the weather so hot that you could fry eggs on the deck.
Left Rio at 800 and started our trip toward the states. Payday, but no place to go.
Sunday but same as any other day.
Pulled into Bahia about 1000 this morning. It is a very pretty harbor but the town don't look to hot. Has a population of about 25,000 - 80% of them black. Get only one liberty.
Pumped on the air compressor for the divers again today and it was on hell of a hot and tiresome job. Commander always picks on the Marines for these details.
Big reception on board. Went ashore and looked over the town. Some beautiful homes with tropical gardens around them out in the residential district. Beer wasn't so good as that in Rio. The lower city, that which is on the flats next to the water is very dirty and smells rotten. Most of the city is in a very hilly territory. Some of the streets are so steep that a person can hardly walk up them and almost has to slide down.
* Mar. 21
Today is my birthday and am 22 years old. Getting old fast now. Am on guard today 8-12 watch. Left Bahia at 0800 this morning and headed north.
Captain's Inspection - Monahan up in the air
Sunday - Nothing doing
Mar. 25-27 No Report
Fired guns for the first time. Not half bad.
Simulated Admiral's inspection. International Law as defined by Captain Oliver. A lot of dam fool laws, got together by a bunch of dam fool people that know one goes by.
Mar. 30-31 - No Report
Saw the battle fleet also all the plane carriers, Saratoga, Lexington and Langley
Fired 5 ten gun salvos (8" guns)
Returned to Guantanamo Bay this afternoon.
Lt. Lawbough and Monahan went up for a night flight in one of the ship's planes. When they went skimming along about 5 foot
above the water, the plane dived suddenly. It struck the water and turned completely over. Neither men were hurt badly though they were shaken up a bit and got a few scratches.
Took a run out of the bay and ran in circles all day long. On the 8th we were cutting circles at 30 knots per hour and she sure cuts a mean one.
Apr. 10-18 No Reports
Came back to the ship after a week in camp at Deer Point. Had a good time in spite of mosquitoes and sand fleas. Made "247" on the range.
Easter. Had 8-12 watch this morning. Skipper asked me what I made on the range. Said he expected me to make expert.
Apr. 21-22 No report
Go paid. Bought another souvenir towel. I'm broke already.
Went over to the Marine Barracks and bought supplies at the canteen. Wouldn't mind being stationed there for about six months.
Apr. 25-29-No Report
Two fires today. One this morning at 0500 just after I came off a 1200 to 0400 watch. Another tonight at 1900.
Left Guantanamo Bay for the north. Was almost the last ship to leave. Last ship to leave. Last ship in the fine cruisers and next to last in the whole line. USS Arkansas bringing up the rear.
Payday. Rained sheets last night and no one closed the ports in the Captain's cabin and staterooms. I had middle watch and it started to rain during the first. Captain sent a note to Monahan about it.
J. O. Wood, Jr. caught by Monahan while reading a paper on duty. Monahan sent a request to the Captain asking permission to bust(probably slang for write him up) J.O.. Was (my Father was) court martial Orderly for the summary court of Hudson, S2c. Sea is a little choppy and a few of the fellows are getting sick.
May 3 No report
J. A. Jr. got a deck court at 1200 for refusing to stand up on post. Skipper gave him a fine of $14 and 5 days confinement.
May 5 No report
Anchored off Ambrose Light outside of New York. Will go up river to Brooklyn Navy Yard tomorrow.
May 7 No report
Went to dry-dock. Went over the side and scraped bottoms ?????. Went to New York on liberty. Got off the subway at 428 7th St. Times Square. Walked around a bit and went up Broadway. Took in a show and saw Broadway at night. Parks and I came back in the subway and didn't get lost.
On guard so had a day of rest.
Over the side again, painting this time. Got enough paint on myself to paint a destroyer and what's wrong the paint won't wash off.
May 11-12 No report
Went out for final acceptance trials. Made circles and figure lights at full speed. Also charged from full ahead to full astern and vice versa. Came back up the Hudson River and anchored at Dyhman street about 202 St. Saw the big liners, Berengaria, Majestic, The SS Ile de France. They are sure some happy liners. J. A. Wood, Jr., Lloyd, and Joe Groubkatis got transferred. Harvies transfer came too, but he had already been gone two days AWOL.
May 14 - No report
Got a big compliment from Captain Oliver's guests about neat and snappy orderlies. Shipper called me in the cabin so they could look me over and ask questions about our watches, how I loved the ship, etc. Mrs. Oliver said that she thought the Captain had very neat looking orderlies. Today is payday, but have a 4-8 watch. Steward gave me the fruit salad left over from the lunch. It sure was great stuff
Went over to the procyn? and saw several of the fellows from the old 197th. Two of them are Cpls and 5 PFc. Not bad. Went to a show on Broadway and saw Gary Cooper in "The Texas",, also saw and heard Rudy Vallee and his orchestra and the Brox sisters in person.
May 17-No report
Left N.Y. for Hampden Roads 1500. Weather cold and cloudy
* May 19
Arrived Hampden Roads 9:30. Admiral Hughes (Chief Naval Operations) came aboard 1600. Nice fellow, had big mustache. Carried messages for him.
* May 20
Big Presidential Review. Hoover, Pres.; Adams, Sec. of Navy;, Assistant Sr., of Navy; Admiral Hughes, Chief Naval Operations aboard. I was orderly for Sec. of Navy. Stayed near Hoover for long time and got a good look at him. Saw plane land onto Los Angeles and then take off again. Some stunt. Read in the paper that Lester J. Underdown, Lakehurst, is held for two murders. Hattie's husband and another fellow.
Saw the Mauretania (4 stacks) as it went out. It passed about 200 yds from us. At the same time the Homeric (2 stacks but big) passed us at about the same distance, going in. Read another piece in the paper about Underdown(murder case mentioned in may 20 entry) and his case.
May 22-25 No report
The famous Rochester came in today. It sure is an old-timer. It is so old that its name has been changed tow different times.
May 27-28 No report
Took examination for Corporal and passed but have my doubts whether I'll make it or not. Weather still cold as the devil here at New York.
May 30 - No report May 31
Went to Coney Island. Saw almost everything but don't like the place at all. Rode about a 100 miles on a subway. Met two women on the subway. Ann Mulwski and Rose.
Sunday and the day after payday. A few visitors today. Steger brought his women aboard.
Jun. 2-5,- No report
Left Brooklyn Navy Yard about 1300 and headed for Newport, R.I.. Sea is choppy but not very rough. Harvie got transferred to barracks at Navy Yard.
Jun. 7,8-No report
Found $35 on the morning of Jun. 6. No one claimed it yet so guess it's mine. We're now at Newport and it has been raining ever since we arrived. Got a letter from Sammy today - a regular scandal sheet. Worse than police gazette on Dubuth Ripsaw.???
Jun. 10-14- no report
Sunday. The day is bright and warm this morning. It is the first nice day that we've had since we left New York. Have been busy getting dope for second squad. Even though I'm not a non-com, I've got all the work to do. Steges got back off leave this morning.
Jul. 1-27 No report
Still at Newport. Webster ??? I went ashore. Walked about eight miles up and down the cliff walk. It's a beautiful place. Put out to sea at 0900 this morning for target practice with the sub-calibers.
Aug. 1-2 No report
Arrived at Bar Harbor, Maine at 1500. This is a beautiful place. Mostly hills or mountains covered with pine, cedar, etc. Several small islands with rocky beaches. Sea watch standing by because of bad weather and they are afraid of all the rocks. The weather is colder than winter.
Aug. 4-9 No report
Leaving Bar Harbor for Portland, ME. The weather is so cold that they had to turn on the heat. E???Looks like Earsom or Warsom is still in sick bay from drinking Bar Harbor whiskey.
Oct. 1-14 No report
Fired S.R.B.P. Made 2nd class fun pointer on gun#3
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