This Day in Naval History – Jan 17Story Number: NNS020108-06 Release Date: 1/17/2014 11:23:00
1863 - Union iron-clad gunboat USS Baron de Kalb, with tinclad gunboats Forest Rose and Romeo, along with an Army transport, clear out Confederate strong holds up White River to Des Arc, Ark.
1899 - Gunboat USS Bennington, commanded by Cmdr. E.D. Taussig, claims Wake Island for the United States, giving the U.S. a cable route between Honolulu and Manila, a factor that influences territorial demands in the Pacific.
1943 - Submarine USS Whale (SS 239) sinks the Japanese transport Heiyo Maru.
1943 - Light aircraft carrier USS Cowpens (CV-25) is launched. Redesignated CVL 25 six months later, she serves in the Pacific during World War II.
1944 - Dauntless SBD scout planes and Avenger TBF torpedo bombers bomb Japanese shipping at Rabaul and sank three ships, damaging a third.