” The U.S. Naval War College released a trove of World War II information Monday by posting online the operational diary kept by the Pacific commander, Adm. Chester W. Nimitz, during the war against Japan.
The 4,000-page multivolume collection includes a running summary of the situation for every day of the war in the Pacific compiled by Nimitz’s planning staff. It is the only known similar document to survive from the war, said Prof. John Hattendorf, who teaches maritime history at the Naval War College in Newport, R.I.
The diary begins on Dec. 7, 1941, the day of the attack on Pearl Harbor, with the line: “The war opened with the attack of Japanese aircraft on Oahu.” It goes on to list the locations of the Navy’s forces throughout the Pacific, the damage sustained that day and what is known about the enemy’s position.“
By way of the Navy we provide you with some biographical detail on the great admiral …
” Chester William Nimitz was born on 24 February 1885, near a quaint hotel in Fredericksburg, Texas built by his grandfather, Charles Nimitz, a retired sea captain. Young Chester, however, had his sights set on an Army career and while a student at Tivy High School, Kerrville, Texas, he tried for an appointment to West Point. When none was available, he took a competitive examination for Annapolis and was selected and appointed from the Twelfth Congressional District of Texas in 1901.
He left high school to enter the Naval Academy Class of 1905. It was many years later, after he had become a Fleet Admiral that he actually was awarded his high school diploma. At the Academy Nimitz was an excellent student, especially in mathematics and graduated with distinction — seventh in a class of 114. He was an athlete and stroked the crew in his first class year. The Naval Academy’s yearbook, “Lucky Bag”, described him as a man “of cheerful yesterdays and confident tomorrows.”
We are pleased to provide our readers with a short biographical film of the Admiral from the National Archives .
Here is a synopsis of his career promotions and decorations…
” Graduated from the Naval Academy – Class of 1905
Ensign – 07 Jan. 1907
Lieutenant (junior grade) – 31 Jan. 1910
Lieutenant – 31 Jan. 1910
Lieutenant Commander – 29 Aug. 1916
Commander – 8 March 1918
Captain – 02 June 1927
Rear Admiral – 23 June 1938
Vice Admiral – Not held – promoted directly to Admiral
Admiral – 31 Dec. 1941
Fleet Admiral – 19 Dec. 1944
DECORATIONS and AWARDS
Distinguished Service Medal with two gold stars
Army Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Lifesaving Medal
Victory Medal with Escort Clasp
American Defense Service Medal
Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal
World War II Victory Medal
National Defense Service Medal”
Admiral Nimitz was a genius who understood the importance of sea power and it’s direct relationship to trade . He was the author of a very important essay “ Who Commands Sea – Commands Trade” in which he lays out the case for sea power that is studied to this day .
The diaries themselves are now available for viewing from the Naval War College under the title Nimitz Graybook . Here is a screenshoot of the title page . All of the writings are available for download in PDF format . This is truly an historic release and all WWII buffs should be in heaven with this newly available material and now they can enjoy a recounting of the Pacific war day by day from December 7, 1941 right up to the surrender of Japan .
In closing we offer you this documentary of the great admiral’s namesake , CVN 68 , the USS Nimitz .