The Naval War College Archives has started to arrange the records of the Naval Torpedo Station (NTS) headquartered on Goat Island in Newport, Rhode Island. The records date from 1883 to approximately 1957, chronicling the administration and scientific studies of this early naval research facility. The records are vital to understanding the early history of the development and evolution of underwater ordnance and their place in naval warfare.
There is a lot to learn about these papers, as they have been in off-site storage since coming to NWC over 30 years ago. Having never been fully archivally processed, they have been near-impossible to access for research. The collection is also very large – over 500 linear feet, which is the equivalent of more than 500 banker boxes. The project is projected to take two archivists five years to complete. NHC hopes that by 2025, the collection will be fully accessible for research and study.
Follow along with us as we work through the records and learn more about this singular historic collection. As we come across interesting finds, we’ll post them here. If you have any questions regarding the special collections, please email us at archives [at] usnwc.edu or visit our website.