31 December 2008

A New Skipper

On this day in 1948, Commodore Harry Grattidge took command of the Queen Mary, replacing Captain John D. Snow. For trivia's sake, in the Royal Navy the rank of Captain is below Commodore but above Commander. It's the equivalent of Colonel in the British Army (as opposed to Captain in the army, with would be below that of Captain in the Royal Navy. Got that?). Commodore ranks above Captain but below Rear Admiral, has a one-star rank, and is equivalent to Brigadier General in the British Army. (Wikipedia is my source on this, so if it's wrong I apologize. Please feel free to correct me and them). In 31 years of service, the Mary had 33 captains (and/or commodores). I was lucky enough to get my hands on an autograph book from the 1940s containing the signature of Commodore Sir James Bisset--he served during World War II and is pictured here with Winston Churchill.

Queen Mary by James Steele

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