The first submarines arrived at the semi-derelict New London Navy Yard in Groton, CT, 100 years ago. At the time, the yard was being used as a coaling station and had been hosting a training school for Marine officers. In 1916, the yard was formally designated as the Navy's first submarine base.
The state of Connecticut had given the Navy the land for the navy yard in 1868. But the Navy didn't really want it and when oil replaced coal for firing the boilers of warships just before the Great War, the Navy didn't need the yard. Then, as now, it was the local congressmen who pushed the Navy to do something with the place.
The Submarine Base would be safe until Fort Fumble recommended closing it a decade ago. The Base Realignment and Closure Committee rejected the recommendation.
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