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 Charleston Sail and Power Squadron

Our burgee  

Abbreviated History of the Charleston Power Squadron
First Twenty-five Years

by P/C Harl Porter, SN

1945 - Late in the year local boat owners meet at Charleston Municipal Yacht Basin with Ian L. McKenzie (of Staten Island Power Squadron) to discuss forming a Charleston squadron.

1946 - On 8 March Charleston Power Squadron was chartered with 18 members. Charter signed by C/C Charles F Chapman. At year end were 26 members.

1947 - Several short cruises were made to nearby inlets.

1948 - First annual Labor Day weekend cruise up the Cooper River, through the locks into Lake Moultrie. Dinner was catfish stew and fish fry.

1949 - In June Charleston Power Squadron, then not district affiliated, was attached to District 30. District 30 was composed of only three squadrons: Charleston, Canal Zone and Hawaii.

1950 - Active year of teaching and boating.

1951 - Charleston Power Squadron was instrumental in the formation of the Cape Fear Squadron.

1952 and 1953 - Active years of teaching and boating.

1954 - First major public service project of the Charleston Power Squadron lead by P/C (1951) Fred Johnson - Posted signs showing clearances under local bridges.

1955 - Five squadrons in District 30 in the southeastern United States formed District 17. Squadrons were: Charleston, Atlanta, Cape Fear, Chattahoochee and St Simon Island. Charleston and Cape Fear Squadrons form the Long Bay (Myrtle Beach) Division of Charleston Power Squadron.

Charleston Power Squadron Burgee designed by Fred Smith (elected Commandeer in 1956 and 1957) and John A. Cummings; approved by USPS on 15 June. Description - white background with a palmetto tree within a ships wheel on the hoist and five blue stripes on the fly. Heraldry - The palmetto tree represents the coastal region of South Carolina where the palmetto tree is most prevalent. The ships wheel represents boats, boating and boatman. The five blue stripes represent the five squadrons then in District 17.

1956 - At the end of the first ten year, the Charleston Power Squadron numbered 45 members. In that period a total of 108 merit marks were earned by this active group. Savannah River (Akin and Augusta) squadron charted.

1957 - Charleston Power Squadron sponsored a Piloting Class in Savannah, Georgia of 25 students. Completion of the USPS Piloting class was a perquisite before applying for membership in a “local” squadron. Tybee Light Squadron was charted (spun off from Charleston) on 7 August.

1958 - P/C (1948) Leonard C. Ripley elected District 17 Commander.

1959 - Lake Hartwell (Greenville and Spartanburg) squadron charted.

1960 - District 17, Charleston’s home District, was divided; Charleston became a part of the new District 26. Charleston Power Squadron provides instruction to people at Beaufort with 12 students completing the course and joining our squadron. Long Bay (Myrtle Beach) Squadron was charted (spun off from Charleston).

John N. Hornik, one of the squadron’s most active members, passed “over the bar”. He bequeathed one-thousand dollars to the squadron: half for the purchase of training aids and half to purchase beverages to be served at squadron functions. The first one-day cruise of each year is dedicated to his memory.

1961 - The Beaufort Squadron was charted (spun off from Charleston).

1962 - Over 20 member boats participated in the Labor Day cruise to Pimplico.

1963 - Charleston Power Squadron was afforded the use of a city-owned building at the Municipal Marina. We now had our own dedicated classroom. Building (squadron “headquarters”) was furnished by member donations.

1964 - Bob Middaugh earned the squadron’s first “JN” grade.

1965 - 153 students enrolled in Piloting classes.

1966 - At the end of the twentieth year, the squadron had grown to 134 members. During the first 20-years a total of 477 merit marks were earned. Piloting classes had 160 students with 34 students in advance grades and electives. The New (current) Palmetto Log masthead was designed by P/C (1963) George Brown.

1967 - P/D/C (1958) and P/C (1948) Leonard C. Ripley (a charter member) presented the compass from his sloop “Tacie” to the squadron as a training aid.

1968 Squadron “Headquarters Area” (at Municipal Marina) was remolded and painted.

1969 - Charleston Power Squadron hosted D26 Spring Conference at the Sheraton-Hilton Hotel. In attendance were C/C Emery Ellis and NEO Herbert Talboys.

1970 - Bob Midauagh completed N and earned the first full certificate in Charleston Power Squadron.

1971 - Twenty-Fifth anniversary of Charleston Power Squadron. Five of the 18 Charter members were still active in the squadron. Two Charter members earned 25-year Life Membership: P/C (1950) W. W. Muckenfuss and P/C (1948) Leonard Ripley. Three Charter members received 25-year lapel pins: P/C (1949), Archie Meyers, Wilton Poulnot and Samuel Sanders.

Fredrick Taylor elected Commander. The Fred Taylor Award (which is presented to the person who contributed most to the educational efforts of the squadron) is named after P/C (1971) Fred Taylor.

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