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Louis Poisson Davis, Sr., Oral History Interview, July 15, 1976, May 26, 1976

(Oral History #OH0034)

Descriptive Summary Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Title: Louis Poisson Davis, Sr., Oral History Interview
Creators: Davis, Louis Poisson, 1883-1978
Lennon, Donald R.
Repository: ECU Manuscript Collection
Languages: English
Extent: 0.015 Cubic feet, 3 audiocassettes, 1.5 hours, 55 pages .

Administrative Information Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

General note

1905-1946

Access Restrictions

No restrictions

Copyright Notice

Repository does not own copyright to the oral history collection. Permission to cite, reproduce, or broadcast must be obtained from both the repository and the participants in the oral history, or their heirs.

Preferred Citation

Louis Poisson Davis, Sr., Oral History Interview (#OH0034), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.

Acquisition Information

  • Gift of Louis Poisson Davis, Sr.

Processing Information

  • Processed by L. Harris; M. Boccaccio, June 1987

  • Encoded by Apex Data Services


Description Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Captain Davis discusses his career from graduation at the U.S. Naval Academy in 1905 through retirement in 1946. His first sea duty was aboard the USS KEARSARGE in the Caribbean where he describes gunnery practice and a misfire (pp. 2-3) and ship repairs (p. 4). Joining the China Fleet in 1908, Davis discusses the Japanese presence in Manchuria (p. 6), U.S. presence in Hong Kong, duty on the USS GALVESTON, money values, servants, and Chinese executions (pp. 9-12). Aboard the USS DELAWARE in 1910, Davis was involved with engineering and maintenance duties (pp. 17-20). He joined the USS PANTHER, a repair ship, in 1913 and the USS MINNESOTA in 1914 as engineering officer. Davis describes a trip to Veracruz in 1916 and some of the activities of Carranza's presidency (pp. 23-24). Aboard the destroyer USS JARVIS during World War I, he discusses refueling from a tanker at sea (p. 26), patrolling for submarines, and convoying British ships (pp. 28-31).

Promoted to Commander after World War I, Davis joined the 33rd Division and describes an accident where seven ships ran aground at Point Pedarnales, California, in 1922. He then spent 2 1/2 years withthe 11th Naval District in Panama devoting most of his time to field maneuvers (pp. 38-40). Promoted to Captain and given command of the USS CAYANA, Davis discusses President Franklin D. Roosevelt's attitude toward the Navy, keeping the fleet in Pearl Harbor during the Sino-Japanese War (pp. 42-43). During World War II, Davis was at the naval ammunition depot in Hingham, Massachusetts, where he developed palletized and stacked ammunition (pp. 44-45). Davis spent the remainder of the war with the Bureau of Ordnance as inspector of ammunition depots. The interview concludes with comments on Josephus Daniels' handling of social diseases in the Navy (p. 47), Admiral A. T. Mahan as a naval strategist (pp. 48-49), ordnance (pp. 50-52), and Chester Nimitz (pp. 51-52).

For related material see the Louis Poisson Davis Papers, #309.1-309.40s.

Online access to this finding aid is supported with funds created through the federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). These funds come through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services which is administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. This grant is part of the North Carolina ECHO, Exploring Cultural Heritage Online, Digitization Grant Program.

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This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Special Collections Division, J.Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University. The materials described here are physically available in our reading room. None of the original documents in this collection are digitally available online at this time.
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