The United States Navy is a military branch that has been around since 1775. It has an annual budget of about 163.86 billion U.S. dollars and an estimated 347,044 active-duty personnel, 101,583 ready reserve personnel, and 279,471 civilian employees. The Navy’s primary task is to command and control the U.S. Navy’s fleet and armed forces comprising 2,623 aircraft, ten aircraft carriers, nine amphibious assault ships, 62 destroyers, 72 submarines, and 17 frigates (numbers are close estimates).
Below, I want to share some fantastic and educational facts about the United States Navy.
1. The United States Navy was officially established on October 13, 1775, in Philadelphia… as the Continental Navy.
2. The United States Navy is the world’s most powerful Navy in terms of displacement, tonnage, and firepower.
3. The ranks of the U.S. Navy are ranked with enlisted personnel at the bottom and officers at the top.
4. The world’s first nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Nautilus (SSN-571), became the first submarine to successfully finish the North Pole’s submerged transit on August 3, 1958. 1982 marked the year that the Nautilus was declared a national historic landmark. Located at Groton, Connecticut, where 250,000 people visit each year, the submarine has been preserved as a museum ship. It was decommissioned in 1980.
5. The USS Constitution (Old Ironsides) was launched in 1797 and is still active… not only because she’s a floating military museum, but because she’s the oldest sailing ship still afloat. She was preserved in 1881 and can be seen at the Charlestown Navy Yard, Boston, Massachusetts, to this day.
6. Women can serve in specific roles in the U.S. Navy: as civilians and commissioned officers!
7. The U.S. Navy has never lost a ship with an atomic warhead on board.
8. The United States Navy was the only U.S. military branch to have fought in every American-held battle in the Middle East since World War II.
9. The United States Navy is one of three U.S. military branches that still conduct offshore-combat operations… along with the Coast Guard and Marine Corps.
10. The number of women on active duty exceeds 50,00 across various traditional careers (medical, aviation, etc.) and non-traditional jobs (combat systems, etc.).
11. The United States Navy welcomed its first female four-star admiral, Admiral Michelle J. Howard in 2014. She was the first black woman in the armed forces to achieve four stars.
12. The Cyclone-class patrol craft is the U.S. Navy’s smallest ship.
13. The U.S. Navy has over 758 authorized aircraft that are regularly deployed to perform a variety of missions, including search and rescue, anti-submarine warfare, maritime interdiction, and combat search and rescue missions.
14. During World War II, the United States Navy was the only U.S. military branch to be in action in Africa, Asia, European and Atlantic Theaters, Oceania (South Pacific Ocean), and the Middle East.
15. The Navy has an age limit – you cannot join if you are younger than 17 years old OR older than 39 years.
16. Every year on November 11, Remembrance Day is held at Arlington National Cemetery for all men and women who served in the U.S. Navy…. along with other branches of the military. This day is also known as Veterans Day… which features parades across the country.
17. During World War II, the following presidents served in the United States Navy: Jimmy Carter, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, George H.W. Bush and John F. Kennedy.
18. The U.S. Navy SEALS are an extraordinary and unique fighting force of the Navy that conducts secret operations in all situations, such as sea, air and on land. They are the U.S. Navy’s primary special operations force.
19. The Navy has many active duty locations, each home to its own regiment, battalion, detachment or squadron. On the West Coast are San Diego, Pearl Harbor, Bremerton and San Francisco units, along with the Marine Corps base at Twentynine Palms. The East Coast has Charlestown units and roles in Florida and South Carolina too!
20. Pearl Harbor is the only Navy base that a foreign power has attacked. In 1941, Japanese planes bombed Pearl Harbor and killed some 2,400 Americans.