September 17, 2007

Manic Monday: Crisp

The Manic Monday word this week is crisp. My first thought was the baseball player, Coco Crisp. However, I am not a Red Sox fan ... so I can't do a post on one of their players. My second thought was that crisp is the word that I always use to describe what I think of the uniforms worn by naval officers. My brother, Charles, was a naval officer who used his law degree as a member of the Navy's JAG for a number of years. My uncle, Ben Hacker, retired as an admiral in the navy. Uncle Ben and Charles both looked crisp whenever they wore their navy uniforms.

I imagine that they both know about the Golden Thirteen. Truthfully, I didn't know about the Golden Thirteen until today. March 1944 was a turning point for all African American men serving the United States in a military capacity. Thirteen intelligent, proud, and able-bodied black men became the first African American commissioned officers serving the US Navy.

The Golden Thirteen, as these highly esteemed men were called, trained at Camp Robert Smalls, a recruiting center now known as the Great Lakes Naval Training Station in Illinois. These highly capable African American men earned an almost perfect 3.89 class grade point average and officer status in the US Navy, which counted a total of almost 100,000 African American enlisted men in its ranks.

The entire military wasn't desegrated until 1948. I'm sure that the success of these 13 pioneers made a difference. I'm also confident that these brothers looked crisp in their naval uniform as well!


25 comments:

Jenny McB said...

Coco Crisp rules along with the rest of the Red Sox ( just had to throw that in...)

Good connection with crisp and I always like to learn something new from a blog and I did today. I hadn't heard of the Golden Thirteen before and it had to take courage for them to go through the training.

Jamie said...

What a beautiful post. This was a bit of history that I didn't know. Now to find out what happened in their careers. The Tuskeegee airmen get all fame, it would be nice to hand it out to the other services.

Jamie said...

Of course I had to find out more. I don't know if you saw this, but the last of the golden 13 passed away in November of last year

Navy.mil

Villager said...

Jen and Jamie - It is nice to see Manic Monday bringing new information to all of us. Thank you for taking time to enjoy my MM post this week.

peace, Villager

ian said...

Interesting stuff I learned here. I'm currently researching the Buffalo Soldiers for a book I've been commissioned to write and these Golden Thirteen are definitely along the same lines.

Ian

Rosemarie said...

Crisp they look, in that uniform! My husband is from a military family. He was a submariner and served in the Reserves.

Stine said...

They do look crisp and handsome. Pioneers they were, and I'm sure it came with a price.

hana said...

great post. i learn something new thanks for sharing.

Martin Lindsey. said...

Good to learn something new about the Golden Thirteen today.

So much for Coco Crisp but how about the Cocoa Crispies his mother or his friends must have been thinking of (is it his real first name or a nickname?) I never liked the cereal myself but I do remember part of the commercial jingle..."It's time for Cocoa Crispies, They are so Chocolately, And when I get a taste of them, I trumpet happilly!"...It ends with some cartoon character with a horn for a nose trumpeting happily...toot, toot, toot, toooooot!

I'll go for two this morning. We have a crisp morning of cool temperatures in Alabama after an extended heat wave. I've never been happier to see fall approaching.

Villager said...

Ian, Rosemarie, Stine & Hana - Asante sana for your visit and kind words!

Martin - Coco is his nickname. I encourage you to participate in Manic Monday meme in future. It is a good way to meet bloggers that might not otherwise visit with us.

peace, Villager

Martin Lindsey. said...

I almost forgot the Montford Point Marines. I met one when I lived in Louisville. They looked crisp in their uniforms as the first Black Marines back in the day.

Here's a link..
http://www.mpma28.com/page/page/3125770.htm


Martin

Villager said...

Martin - Thank you for that link to information about Black marines from back in the day. I never knew any of that stuff...

peace, Villager

plez... said...

CRISP, they are!

excellent post! thanks for the education.

maryt said...

Thanks Villager, you're first thought about Coco Crisp is my post...check it out! I'm not a Red Sox fan either but I had to do it because his name fit so well!

Thanks for the info about the Golden Thirteen, didn't know about them.

Villager said...

MaryT and Plez - Asante sana for your comments. I'm grateful that our weekly MM meme post is providing new information for so many people. Plez, did you see the Top Ten Black Bloggers list?

peace, Villager

Sandee (Comedy +) said...

What a nice angle on crisp. Love it. Have a great MM. :)

Mert said...

Great history, they all looked wonderful in their dress uniforms! Happy MM!

Villager said...

Sandee & Mert - Asante sana!

Sherry said...

What a great post! I love history but had no idea about the Golden Thirteen. Thanks for enlightening me!

katherine. said...

I like the idea of crisp uniforms...and join the others in learning of the Golden Thirteen...

also good to learn how to say "thank you" (I think) in...um...swahili?
(apparently it's also a wine....smile)

Villager said...

Sherry - I tend to use Morgen's Manic Monday meme to research and learn something new about Black history. I had not heard of the Golden Thirteen until today either!

Katherine - Asante sana is indeed the kiswahili word for "thank you". I didn't know that it was a wine ... but, then again, I'm a vodka-kinda-guy!

peace, Villager

Sarge Charlie said...

Very well done, being a son of the South during the 40's and 50's I saw the white side of the fence, too bad, I was drafted in June of 1960, that is when my reeducation started. I think the military has done a good job of mixing the races. You may have a different point of view.

This is an excellent post, these are men that America needs to respect.

Villager said...

Sarge - I've never served in the military, but, from everything I can see the military was years ahead of the rest of our society in terms of looking at a person for the content of their character instead of the color of their skin.

Thanks for sharing your time and thoughts with us today.

peace, Villager

Travis said...

I have an interest in military history, so I was aware of these 13 gentlemen. In high school, I did a project paper on these men and the Tuskegee Airmen.

Excellent post today. Happy MM!

Villager said...

Travis - You are blessed to have gone to a school that valued all of American history ... including African American! You had advantage over me in that I never heard of the Golden Thirteen until yesterday.

peace, Villager