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Naval History of Ohio

By Annalisa UnderwoodNaval History and Heritage Command, Communication and Outreach Division

Ohio, known as “The Buckeye State,” was the 17th state admitted to the Union on March 1, 1803, retroactively after an oversight in 1953 that found Congress never passed a resolution formally admitting it to the Union. The customary practice of Congress declaring an official date of statehood did not begin until 1812, with Louisiana’s admission as the 18th state. On August 7, 1953, Ohio’s 150th anniversary, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a congressional joint resolution, officially recognizing Ohio to the Union.

Over 80 U.S. Navy ships have been named after the state of Ohio, its various capital cities, numerous counties and people. These ships, like the USS Akron (ZRS 4), have drifted amongst the clouds and the submarine USS Ohio (SSGN 726), patrolled waters of the deep.

Ohio is the honored birthplace of navy leaders such as Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King, born in Lorain, Ohio, who served in World War I and later lead the Navy to victory over the Axis navies in World War II to astronauts Neil A. Armstrong, born in Wapakoneta, Ohio, the first man to ever walk on the moon, and James A. Lovell, commander of the Apollo 13 mission which suffered a critical failure en route to the moon but was brought back safely by the efforts of the crew and mission control.