Great detective work from the Brooklyn Navy Yard Archives time to uncover this story of an Olympic athlete who defied Hitler at the 1936 Games, and then kept up the fight as a wartime worker in the Navy Yard.
As the 2018 Winter Olympics begin, we share the story of a former Yard worker who participated in the 1936 summer Olympics in Berlin. A member of the U.S. gymna...stics team and the chosen flag-bearer for the United States, Alfred Jochim, chose to take a symbolic stand against then Chancellor Adolf Hitler in the first ever televised Olympic games by refusing to dip the American flag to the German leader. This story was published in the Yard’s newsletter, The Shipworker, in a 1943 issue. Footage of the famous snub can be found in the link below.
“Volume II, Number 30; The Shipworker collection SC/4; Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation Archives; Brooklyn, NY”
"Like" to vote your favorite photo of the Brooklyn Navy Yard from the past year! Thank you to all the wonderful photographers who joined our Seasonal Photography Tours of the Yard, and you'll be able to see them all on display shortly in BLDG 92.
While the US military remained segregated throughout World War II, the war opened new opportunities for black people to work in defense industries. On June 25, 1941, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 8802, which stated, “I do hereby reaffirm the policy of the United States that there shall be no discrimination in the employment of workers in defense industries or government because of race, creed, color, or national origin.”
The order, issued under pressure from civ...il rights and labor organizations that were planning to march on Washington that summer to demand fair employment, opened new opportunities for people of color in places like the Brooklyn Navy Yard. This photo was taken in 1941, showing an integrated workforce in the Yard’s recently-constructed foundry. While more black workers gained employment at the Yard than at any time before, it lagged behind other government and private shipyards in black employment, and did not match the demographics of Brooklyn as a whole. Nevertheless, this was the first important step towards the Brooklyn Navy Yard becoming a major center of jobs and business opportunity for Brooklyn’s black and Caribbean community, as it remains today.
Learn more on our special Brooklyn Navy Yard World War II Tour for Black History Month, Sunday, February 4 at 2pm: https://turnstiletours.com/…/world-war-ii-tour-of-the-broo…/
Very exciting news this week as the Brooklyn Navy Yard unveiled its long-term vision to add 5.1 million square feet of space for industry to the facility, and push the workforce to 30,000, with projected new investment of $2.5 billion. These projects would add new facilities around the Yard’s perimeter, including along Kent Ave, around the Clinton Ave Gate, and on the site of the current NYPD Tow Pound on Navy St. In keeping with the non-profit’s mission to create good-quality jobs for New Yorkers of all skill and education levels, 75% of the new space will be manufacturing and industrial, with the remainder being space for creative and technology companies that support the Yard’s industrial ecosystem.
We are so proud to announce our newest tour and partnership with Wafels & Dinges — tours of de Royal Dinges Factory! Come see where the magic happens in their Brooklyn facility that makes all of the wafel dough and ice cream to supply their empire of food trucks, carts, kiosks, and restaurants. Go behind the scenes to see how a street food commissary works, and put your hands in some dough and make your own authentic Belgian wafels. Tours launch Feb. 16 and will be offered every Friday at 10am, and select Tuesday mornings as well. Tours are also available for private groups: https://turnstiletours.com/tours/wafels-dinges-factory-tour/
Finalists for the 2017 Brooklyn Navy Yard Photography Contest. All photos submitted by participants in the Brooklyn Navy Yard Seasonal Photography Tour, hosted by the Brooklyn Navy Yard Center at BLDG 92 and Turnstile Tours.
On this day in 1944, the Battleship Missouri Memorial was launched from the Brooklyn Navy Yard. The keel of the battleship was laid more than three years earlier, and it would require another 4.5 months of construction to get “Might Mo” ready for commissioning. Building the ship took more than 3 million man-days of labor, and workers laid more than 300 miles of wiring and 800 miles of welds to put the 45,000-ton battlewagon together. When this photo was taken, after a crack o...f a bottle on the bow swung by Missouri Sen. Harry Truman’s daughter Mary Margaret, many visitors reported that the clouds parted as the Missouri slid down the ways, and the sun shone over the shipyard.
Learn more about the men and women who built the Missouri on our next Brooklyn Navy Yard: World War II Tour, Sunday, Feb. 4 at 2pm: https://turnstiletours.com/…/world-war-ii-tour-of-the-broo…/
Today marks eight years since the passing of historian, activist, and Brooklyn Navy Yard worker Howard Zinn. In 2016, we had the opportunity to interview his brother-in-law Saul Shechter, seated here watching Zinn’s video interview in BLDG 92. Saul also worked in the Yard in the early stages of World War II, and like Zinn, joined the military and served in combat. Zinn had started to organize apprentices, who were excluded from unions, in the Navy Yard, and he witnessed dange...rous work conditions and fatal accidents.
Saul was very proud of his brother-in-law and told us how Zinn’s time at the Yard and in the service informed his worldview and activism. “I loved him. But when he was younger, he was a radical, and we weren’t used to that. He was a bombardier in the war. He saw the damage, innocent people getting killed like that — that turned his whole life around.”
Now they both have oral histories preserved in the Brooklyn Navy Yard Archive. Thank you so much to Saul’s family for making this possible!
Join Sunday’s Architecture and Infrastructure Tour of the Brooklyn Navy Yard and learn about all the developments that will add 10,000 new jobs in industry, manufacturing, and creative fields to this historic former naval shipyard.
As Haiti has moved into the national political conversation, we took a look back through the archives to examine the role of the Brooklyn Navy Yard in the military occupation that lasted from 1915 to 1934, and we discovered that the first American casualty of that campaign was a Brooklynite.
Tonight we’re at the Columbia University Oral History Masters Program listening to author Jennifer Egan discuss how oral history informed her novel Manhattan Beach, which takes place in large part at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Her remarkable book involved an incredible amount of research, including conducting many of the oral history interviews that are now in the Brooklyn Navy Yard Archive.
Fewer than 5% of US households use home heating oil, yet 85% of those homes are in the Northeast. Most of that oil has to travel by water at some point, meaning we depend on United States Coast Guard icebreakers like Bayonne, NJ-based USCGC STURGEON BAY (WTGB 109) to keep waterways clear of ice. This video from the U.S. Naval Institute explains how and why they do their important work in our region.