“Covered Wagon” – Navy’s First Aircraft Carrier


The USS Langley off San Diego, Calif. with USS Somers in 1930

The USS Langley (CV-1) was converted from the collier USS Jupiter in 1920 and became the U.S. Navy’s first aircraft carrier upon being commissioned in March 1922. Naval aviators of the old “Covered Wagon” crafted carrier operation tactics that were essential to our victory in World War II.

Interestingly, Langley’s sister ships all disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle: USS Cyclops disappeared during World War I, and the Proteus and Nereus were lost on similar routes during World War II.

The Langley was scuttled on 27 February, 1942 after taking five hits from Japanese bombers.

Posted on October 20, 2009 at 10:38 by Chris Carter · Permalink
In: Military History · Tagged with: , , , ,

6 Responses

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  1. Written by TetVet68
    on October 20, 2009 at 16:29

    Visit (now deceased) ‘Navy Centenarian Sailor’, 103 year old, former enlisted Chief Petty Officer, Aviation Chief Radioman (ACRM, Combat Aircrewman), later wartime commissioned Chief Warrant Officer Julio ‘Jay’ Ereneta, U. S. Navy (Ret.), thirty year career veteran of World War One and World War Two. First flew aircrewman in August 1922. Flew rearseat Radioman/Gunner (1920s/1930s) in the tactical air squadrons of the Navy’s first aircraft carriers, USS LANGLEY (CV-1) and USS LEXINGTON (CV-2).


    San Diego, California

  2. Written by William Dillon
    on January 26, 2010 at 16:21

    My Grandfather Wallace “Gotch ” Dillon was Captain ,
    Does anybody have any stories that I can put in the family history

  3. Written by AACJ
    on June 21, 2010 at 12:56

    Hi William,

    My name is Peter and I work in Pensacola, FL. I recently came upon a cigar box that I believe might have been presented to your Grandfather. If you would like to email me at skillet555@aol.com to discuss this further just put in the subject line Cigars. Have a great day.

  4. Written by Jeff
    on December 7, 2010 at 16:10

    To William Dillon as to your grandfather. I have found many items belonging to Admiral JJ “Jocko” Clark, and one is a beautiful photo to Clark from “Gotch” that says
    “To Jocko Clark, Commander Bombardiers, from Gotch Dillon. In dress uniform, just perfect. Send email and I will send photo.

  5. Written by Chuck
    on February 7, 2013 at 11:45

    William–Did you see that there’s a whole book about the Langley? Kind of expensive but may be of interest: http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/B001NJQZSI

  6. Written by GHNYC
    on October 3, 2013 at 12:47

    “Gotch” Dillon was my great-grandfather. I’d like to know a bit more about him to share with my son. He has interest in joining the Navy. Thank you

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