First Subs and Tender Arrive at US Naval Base New London


On Oct. 18, 1915, the US Navy submarines G-1, G-2,  G-4 and the tender USS Ozark arrive at Naval Base New London on the Thames River in Groton, Conn., followed by the boats E-1, D-1 and D-3 and the tender USS Tonopah. The growing force was joined on Nov. 1 by the tender USS Fulton (AS-1), the first ship built to support submarines.

Cdr. Yates Stirling, Jr., became the commander of the new submarine base — the first submarine base in the Navy — as well as the New London Submarine Flotilla and the Submarine School.

The origin of the base dates to April 11, 1868, when Connecticut gave that Navy 112 acres on the Thames river, but became a Navy Yard in 1872 after buildings were built. Over the next 20 years, the yard served as a coaling station and mooring inactive ships. It was closed for two years between 1898 and 1900, when it again was used as a refueling station. It was spared from closure in 1912 by Rep. Edwin Higgins, R-Conn.



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