Now all roads lead to France and heavy is the tread
Of the living; but the dead returning lightly dance.
Edward Thomas, Roads

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Remembering a Veteran: Capt. Lucian Frank Kimball, Yankee Mining Squadron, USN

Capt. Lucian Frank Kimball, USN

Contributed by Asst. Editor Kimball Worcester (no relation)

Roads to the Great War  published a thorough account of the North Sea Mine Barrage HERE on 30 Sept. 2018. I have come across the document below tucked in to the original 1919 monograph that became the book The Yankee Mining Squadron (1920), a resource for that post. This monograph and the document belonged to Commander Lucian Frank Kimball, an executive officer on board USS San Francisco, the flagship of the squadron. His status on the San Francisco was "squadron construction and mining officer."

This bowl, commemorating the service of the mining squadron, belongs to his granddaughter, who has graciously permitted its publication.

Lucian Frank Kimball was born in 1885 in Chelsea, MA, and graduated from Annapolis in 1907. During the Second World War he was in command of the Bremerton Naval Shipyard. He died in 1950 and is buried in Golden Gate National Cemetery, San Bruno, CA. Below is a U.S. Navy document describing the service of the mining squadron that includes a recommendation for the award of the Distinguished Service Medal to (then) Commander Kimball.  At some future time, the award was upgraded to the Navy Cross.

Click on Documents to Enlarge

Aboard the USS San Francisco:

The USS San Francisco (C-5)

An Unidentified Officer (Possibly Kimball) Inspecting Mines
Aboard the USS San Francisco (IWM Photo)


Helen (Kimball) and David B. Justice, daughter of Capt. Kimball 

and parents of the documents donor

Sources: Imperial War Museum;

1 comment:

  1. I've been curious about the Noth Sea Mine Barrage as it truly was an anti submarine success. I've also heard stories: just how good was their mapping and retrieval/accountong after hostilities. Any still out there? I haven't heard about any unintended naritime explosions lately, so retrieval was probably successful. Still the idea is intriguing.