Battle of Veracruz
World War I
First Battle of the Atlantic
World War II
Navy Distinguished Service Medal
Navy Distinguished Service Medal (3)
Naval Historical Foundation, President
Ernest Joseph King (23 November 1878 – 25 June 1956) was Commander
United States Fleet (COMINCH) and Chief of Naval Operations
(CNO) during World War II. As COMINCH-CNO, he directed the United
States Navy's operations, planning, and administration and was a
member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. During World War II, he was the
U.S. Navy's second most senior officer after Fleet Admiral William D.
Leahy, who served as Chief of Staff to the Commander in Chief.
Born in Lorain, Ohio, King served in the
Spanish–American War while
still attending the
United States Naval Academy. He received his first
command in 1914, leading the destroyer USS Terry in the
occupation of Veracruz. During World War I, he served on the staff of
Vice Admiral Henry T. Mayo, the commander of the U.S. Atlantic Fleet.
After the war, King served as head of the Naval Postgraduate School,
commanded a submarine squadron, and served as Chief of the Bureau of
Aeronautics. After a period on the Navy's General Board, King became
commander of the Atlantic Fleet in February 1941.
Shortly after the Japanese
Attack on Pearl Harbor
Attack on Pearl Harbor brought the United
States into World War II, King was appointed as
Commander in Chief
Commander in Chief of
United States Fleet. In March 1942, King succeeded Harold Stark as
Chief of Naval Operations. In December 1944, King became the second
admiral to be promoted to fleet admiral. King left active duty in
December 1945 and died in 1956.
1 Early life
2 Surface ships
5 World War II
6 Retirement and death
7.1 Response to Operation Drumbeat
7.2 Other decisions
8 Personal life
9 Dates of rank
10 Awards and decorations
10.1 Foreign awards
14 External links
King was born in Lorain, Ohio, on 23 November 1878, the son of James
Clydesdale King and Elizabeth Keam King. He attended the United
States Naval Academy from 1897 until 1901, graduating fourth in his
class. During his senior year at the Academy, he attained the rank of
Lieutenant Commander, the highest midshipman ranking at
While still at the Academy, he served on the cruiser USS San
Francisco during the Spanish–American War. After graduation, he
served as a junior officer on the survey ship USS Eagle, the
battleships USS Illinois, USS Alabama and USS New
Hampshire, and the cruiser USS Cincinnati.
King returned to shore duty at
Annapolis in 1912. He received his
first command, the destroyer USS Terry in 1914, participating in
United States occupation of Veracruz. He then moved on to a
more modern destroyer, USS Cassin.
World War I
World War I he served on the staff of Vice Admiral Henry T.
Mayo, the Commander in Chief, Atlantic Fleet. As such, he was a
frequent visitor to the
Royal Navy and occasionally saw action as an
observer on board British ships. It appears that his Anglophobia
developed during this period, although the reasons are unclear. He
was awarded the Navy Cross "for distinguished service in the line of
his profession as assistant chief of staff of the Atlantic Fleet."
It was after
World War I
World War I that King affected his signature manner of
wearing his uniform, with a breast-pocket handkerchief under his
ribbons (see image, top right). Officers serving alongside the Royal
Navy (RN) did this in emulation of Admiral David Beatty, RN. King was
the last to continue this tradition.
After the war, King, now a captain, became head of the Naval
Postgraduate School. Along with Captains
Dudley Wright Knox
Dudley Wright Knox and
William S. Pye, King prepared a report on naval training that
recommended changes to naval training and career paths. Most of the
report's recommendations were accepted and became policy.
World War I
World War I he served in the surface fleet. From 1923 to 1925,
he held several posts associated with submarines. As a junior captain,
the best sea command he was able to secure in 1921 was the stores ship
USS Bridge. The relatively new submarine force offered the
prospect of advancement.
King attended a short training course at the Naval
Submarine Base New
London before taking command of a submarine division, flying his
commodore's pennant from USS S-20. He never earned his Submarine
Warfare insignia (dolphins), although he did propose and design the
now-familiar dolphin insignia. In 1923, he took over command of the
Submarine Base itself. During this period, he directed the salvage
of USS S-51, earning the first of his three Distinguished Service
In 1926, Rear Admiral William A. Moffett, Chief of the Bureau of
Aeronautics (BuAer), asked King if he would consider a transfer to
naval aviation. King accepted the offer and took command of the
aircraft tender USS Wright with additional duties as senior aide
on the staff of Commander, Air Squadrons, Atlantic Fleet.
That year, the
United States Congress passed a law (10 USC Sec. 5942)
requiring commanders of all aircraft carriers, seaplane tenders, and
aviation shore establishments be qualified naval aviators or naval
aviation observers. King therefore reported to Naval Air Station
Pensacola, Florida for aviator training in January 1927. He was the
only captain in his class of twenty, which also included Commander
Richmond K. Turner. King received his wings as Naval Aviator No. 3368
on 26 May 1927 and resumed command of Wright. For a time, he
frequently flew solo, flying down to
Annapolis for weekend visits to
his family, but his solo flying was cut short by a naval regulation
prohibiting solo flights for aviators aged 50 or over. However,
the history chair at the Naval Academy from 1971 to 1976 disputes this
assertion, stating that after King soloed, he never flew alone
again. His biographer described his flying ability as "erratic"
and quoted the commander of the squadron with which he flew as asking
him if he "knew enough to be scared?" Between 1926 and 1936 he
flew an average of 150 hours annually.
King commanded Wright until 1929, except for a brief interlude
overseeing the salvage of USS S-4. He then became Assistant Chief
Bureau of Aeronautics under Moffett. The two fell out over
certain elements of Bureau policy, and he was replaced by Commander
John Henry Towers
John Henry Towers and transferred to command of Naval Station
Rear Admiral King arrives on board the USS Lexington in a new SOC
Seagull in 1936.
On 20 June 1930, King became captain of the carrier
USS Lexington—then one of the largest aircraft carriers in the
world—which he commanded for the next two years. During his
tenure aboard the Lexington, Captain King was the commanding officer
of notable science fiction author Robert A. Heinlein, then Ensign
Heinlein, prior to his medical retirement from the US Navy. During
that time, Ensign Heinlein dated one of King's daughters.
In 1932, King attended the Naval War College. In a war college thesis
entitled "The Influence of National Policy on Strategy", King
expounded on the theory that America's weakness was Representative
Historically ... it is traditional and habitual for us to be
inadequately prepared. This is the combined result of a number
factors, the character of which is only indicated: democracy, which
tends to make everyone believe that he knows it all; the preponderance
(inherent in democracy) of people whose real interest is in their own
welfare as individuals; the glorification of our own victories in war
and the corresponding ignorance of our defeats (and disgraces) and of
their basic causes; the inability of the average individual (the man
in the street) to understand the cause and effect not only in foreign
but domestic affairs, as well as his lack of interest in such matters.
Added to these elements is the manner in which our representative
(republican) form of government has developed as to put a premium on
mediocrity and to emphasise the defects of the electorate already
Following the death of Admiral Moffet in the crash of the airship
USS Akron on 4 April 1933, King became Chief of the Bureau of
Aeronautics, and was promoted to rear admiral on 26 April 1933. As
bureau chief, King worked closely with the chief of the Bureau of
Navigation, Rear Admiral William D. Leahy, to increase the number of
At the conclusion of his term as bureau chief in 1936, King became
Commander, Aircraft, Base Force, at Naval Air Station North Island,
California. He was promoted to Vice Admiral on 29 January 1938 on
becoming Commander, Aircraft, Battle Force – at the time one of only
three vice admiral billets in the US Navy. Among his
accomplishments was to corroborate Admiral Harry E. Yarnell's 1932 war
game findings in 1938 by staging his own successful simulated naval
air raid on Pearl Harbor, showing that the base was dangerously
vulnerable to aerial attack, although he was taken no more seriously
than his contemporary until Dec. 7, 1941 when the Imperial Japanese
Navy attacked the base by air for real.
King hoped to be appointed as either CNO or Commander in Chief, United
States Fleet (CINCUS), but on 15 June 1939, he was posted to the
General Board, an elephants' graveyard where senior officers spent the
time remaining before retirement. A series of extraordinary events
would alter this outcome.
World War II
United States Navy in
World War II
World War II and Naval history of
World War II
King's career was resurrected by his friend, Admiral Harold "Betty"
Chief of Naval Operations
Chief of Naval Operations (CNO), who realized King's talent for
command was being wasted on the General Board. Stark appointed him
Commander, Atlantic Squadron, in fall 1940. King was promoted to
admiral in February 1941 as Commander in Chief, Atlantic Fleet
(CINCLANT) . On 30 December, he became Commander in Chief, United
States Fleet (COMINCH). (Admiral
Husband Kimmel held this position
during the attack on Pearl Harbor. On 18 March 1942, King was
appointed CNO, relieving Stark, becoming the only officer to hold this
combined command. After turning 64 on 23 November 1942, he wrote
President Roosevelt to say he had reached mandatory retirement age.
Roosevelt replied with a note reading, "So what, old top?".
Historian Michael Gannon blamed King for the heavy American losses
during the Second Happy Time. Others however blamed the belated
institution of a convoy system, partly due to a severe shortage of
suitable escort vessels, without which convoys were seen as more
vulnerable than lone ships.
On 17 December 1944, King was promoted to the newly created rank of
fleet admiral, the second of four men in the U.S. Navy to hold that
rank during World War II. He left active duty on 15 December 1945, but
officially remained in the Navy, as five-star officers were to be
given active duty pay for life. On the same day that King left active
duty, Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz succeeded him as Chief of Naval
Retirement and death
After retiring, King lived in Washington, D.C.. He was active in his
early post-retirement, serving as president of the Naval Historical
Foundation from 1946 to 1949), and he wrote the foreword to and
assisted in the writing of Battle Stations! Your Navy In Action, a
photographic history book depicting the U.S. Navy's operations in
World War II
World War II that was published in 1946. King suffered a debilitating
stroke in 1947, and subsequent ill-health ultimately forced him to
stay in naval hospitals at Bethesda, Maryland, and at the Portsmouth
Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine. King briefly served as an advisor to
the Secretary of the Navy in 1950, but he was unable to return to duty
in any long-term capacity as his health would not permit it. King
wrote an autobiography, Fleet Admiral King: A Naval Record, which he
published in 1952.
King died of a heart attack in Kittery on 25 June 1956, at the age of
77. After lying in state at the National Cathedral in Washington,
King was buried in the
United States Naval Academy Cemetery at
Annapolis, Maryland. His wife, who survived him, was buried beside her
husband in 1969.
This article contains weasel words: vague phrasing that often
accompanies biased or unverifiable information. Such statements should
be clarified or removed. (November 2017)
Ernest King served 55 years on active duty in the
United States Navy,
one of the longest careers on record for that service. King is the
only man to have ever held the posts of
Chief of Naval Operations
Chief of Naval Operations and
Commander in Chief,
United States Fleet simultaneously, making him one
of the most powerful U.S. Navy officers ever to serve. As a naval
officer, King was highly intelligent and extremely capable, but
controversial and difficult to serve with, over, or under. King's
blunt honesty and his short temper made him numerous enemies, leaving
a mixed legacy.
Pointing to King's five-and-a-half decades in the Navy and his many
accomplishments as one of the highest-ranked Allied military leaders
of World War II, some consider King one of the greatest admirals of
the 20th century; others, however, point out he never commanded
ships or fleets at sea in war time, and that his
Anglophobia led him
to make decisions which cost many Allied lives.
Others see his ability to counter both British and U.S. Army influence
World War II
World War II strategy as indicative of strong leadership,
and praise his sometimes outspoken recognition of the strategic
importance of the Pacific War. His instrumental role in the
Guadalcanal Campaign has earned him admirers in the United
States and Australia, and some consider him an organizational
genius. He was demanding and authoritarian, and could be abrasive
and abusive to subordinates. King was widely respected for his
ability, but not liked by many of the officers he commanded.
John Ray Stakes described him as:
…perhaps the most disliked Allied leader of World War II. Only
British Field Marshal Montgomery may have had more enemies... King
also loved parties and often drank to excess. Apparently, he reserved
his charm for the wives of fellow naval officers. On the job, he
"seemed always to be angry or annoyed."
There was a famous tongue-in-cheek remark about King, made by one of
his daughters and repeated by Navy personnel at the time, that "he is
the most even-tempered person in the
United States Navy. He is always
in a rage." Franklin D. Roosevelt once described King as a man who
"shaves every morning with a blow torch."
It is commonly reported when King was called to be COMINCH, he
remarked, "When they get in trouble they send for the
sons-of-bitches." However, when he was later asked if he had said
this, King replied he had not, but would have if he had thought of
it. On the other hand, King's view of press relations for the US
World War II
World War II is well documented. When asked to state a public
relations policy for the Navy, King replied "Don't tell them anything.
When it's over, tell them who won."
Admiral King at the
Atlantic Conference in 1941.
Response to Operation Drumbeat
At the start of US involvement in World War II, blackouts on the U.S.
eastern seaboard were not in effect, and commercial ships traveling
the coastal waterways were not travelling under convoy. King's critics
attribute the delay in implementing these measures to his Anglophobia,
as the convoys and seaboard blackouts were British proposals, and King
was supposedly loath to have his much-beloved U.S. Navy adopt any
ideas from the Royal Navy. He also refused, until March 1942, the loan
of British convoy escorts when the Americans had only a handful of
suitable vessels. He was, however, aggressive in driving his destroyer
captains to attack U-boats in defense of convoys and in planning
counter-measures against German surface raiders, even before the
formal declaration of war in December 1941.
Instead of convoys, King had the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard
perform regular anti-submarine patrols, but these patrols followed a
U-boat commanders learned the schedule, and
coordinated their attacks to these schedules. Leaving the lights on in
coastal towns back-lit merchant ships for the U-Boats. As a result,
there was a period of disastrous shipping losses—two million tons
lost in January and February 1942 alone, and urgent pressure applied
from both sides of the Atlantic. However, King resisted the use of
convoys because he was convinced the Navy lacked sufficient escort
vessels to make them effective. The formation of convoys with
inadequate escort would also result in increased port-to-port time,
giving the enemy concentrated groups of targets rather than single
ships proceeding independently. Furthermore, blackouts were a
politically sensitive issue—coastal cities resisted, citing the loss
of tourism revenue.
It was not until May 1942 that King marshalled resources—small
cutters and private vessels that he had previously scorned—to
establish a day-and-night interlocking convoy system running from
Newport, Rhode Island, to Key West, Florida.
By August 1942, the submarine threat to shipping in U.S. coastal
waters had been contained. The U-boats' "second happy time" ended,
with the loss of seven U-boats and a dramatic reduction in shipping
losses. The same effect occurred when convoys were extended to the
Caribbean. Despite the ultimate defeat of the U-boat, some of King's
initial decisions in this theatre could be viewed as flawed.
As to escort carriers, two following the general design of USS Long
Island (acquired March 1941) were built prior to December 1941 with
one being siphoned-off by the UK. During the first half of 1942, four
CVE’s were commissioned with two going to the UK with the other two
being assigned to the US Navy with one each to the Pacific and
Atlantic. In the last half of 1942, fifteen CVE’s were commissioned
with six going to the UK, and all but one of the US Navy units
initially assigned to the Atlantic Fleet. The US manned CVE’s
carried a more robust air wing the previous UK-built/manned vessels
and, obviously, the UK units were not assigned to the daunting tasks
facing the US Navy.
By June 25, 1942, the US Navy had 168 “primary” patrol aircraft in
the “Battle for the Atlantic” zones in 15 squadrons while 176
aircraft (including the remainder of the US Asiatic Squadrons) in the
greater Pacific. The US Navy assigned 148 in-shore patrol aircraft in
the Atlantic Fleet while 86 were assigned in the Greater Pacific. By
December 8, 1942, the US Navy increased the “primary” patrol
aircraft to 174 in the Atlantic with a net of 164 in the Pacific (net
of headquarters and training commands and squadrons being trained).
Actually, the US Atlantic Fleet training commands which conducted
anti-submarine and convoy escort missions had more aircraft than the
There is no statistical evidence Admiral King stripped the Atlantic
Fleet to fill the gaps in the Pacific nor is the evidence the US Navy
had neglected the preparation for anti-submarine warfare or ignored
the learning from WWI, the Neutrality Patrols or the early Battle of
the Atlantic. The attack on
Pearl Harbor caught the US Navy in the
early stages of operationalization. One can praise the US Navy for its
ability to implement convoys so quickly with a bevy of essentially
“green” crews, new vessels and new aircraft coming “on line.”
If the war had started six months later the Germans would have been
facing a very different US Navy.
A lesser leader could have pointed to the intense commitment to the
Atlantic convoys system to the UK and Russia; augment the British Home
Fleet; and/or support
Australia and New Zealand (as the British Navy
had) and would have demanded relocation of experienced crews and
vessels back to US waters (as well as fought to eliminate any further
lead-lease deployment of naval escort-grade vessels). Admiral King
stayed the course and the US Navy reasserted itself both in the
“Battle of the Atlantic” and, with no help from the British, in a
string of great victories in the Pacific. The bottom line is if FDR
thought Admiral King was incompetent Admiral King would have been
Other decisions widely regarded as questionable were his resistance to
the employment of long-range
B-24 Liberator on Atlantic maritime
patrols (thus allowing the U-boats a safe area in the middle of the
Atlantic — the "Atlantic Gap")(see "INTER-SERVICE CHALLENGES" as
well as the fact of the 13 PB4Y Naval Aviation Squadrons commissioned
in 1943, 8 were initially deployed to the Atlantic Fleet), the denial
of adequate numbers of landing craft to the Allied invasion of Europe
(a very broad assertion since the US war production was in civilian
hands and the Joint Chiefs recommended to the President the deployment
priorities as well as the fact of the added drain on landing craft
caused by Battle of Anzio), and the reluctance to permit the Royal
Navy's Pacific Fleet any role in the Pacific (again, a broad assertion
which has been treated in depth in a variety of recent histories of
the War in the Pacific pointing to the complexities of integrating a
British naval force which did not have an adequate supply
infrastructure nor proven ability to operate with the US Navy's Fast
Carrier groups). In all of these instances, circumstances forced a
re-evaluation or he was overruled. It has also been pointed out that
King did not, in his post-war report to the Secretary of the Navy,
accurately describe the slowness of the American response to the
U-boat threat in early 1942.
It should be noted, however, employment of long-range maritime patrol
aircraft in the Atlantic was complicated by inter-service squabbling
over command and control (the aircraft belonged to the Army; the
mission was the Navy's;
Secretary of War
Secretary of War Stimson and General Arnold
initially refused to release the aircraft). This was later
mitigated later in 1942 and into 1943 by the assignment of Navy-owned
and operated PB4Y-1 Liberators, and by late 1944, the PB4Y-2 Privateer
aircraft. Although King had certainly used the allocation of ships to
the European Theatre as leverage to get the necessary resources for
his Pacific objectives, he provided (at General Marshall's request) an
additional month's production of landing craft to support Operation
Overlord. Moreover, the priority for landing craft construction was
changed, a factor outside King's remit. The level of sea lift for
Overlord turned out to be more than adequate.
The employment of British and Empire forces in the Pacific was a
political matter. The measure was forced on Churchill by the British
Chiefs of Staff, not only to re-establish British presence in the
region, but to mitigate any impression in the U.S. that the British
were doing nothing to help defeat Japan. King was adamant that naval
Japan remain 100% American, and angrily resisted
the idea of a British naval presence in the Pacific at the Quadrant
Conference in late 1944, citing (among other things) the difficulty of
supplying additional naval forces in the theatre (for much the same
reason, Hap Arnold resisted the offer of RAF units in the Pacific). In
addition, King (along with Marshall) had continually resisted
operations that would assist the British agenda in reclaiming or
maintaining any part of her pre-war colonial holdings in the Pacific
or the Eastern Mediterranean. Roosevelt, however, overruled him and,
despite King's reservations, the
British Pacific Fleet
British Pacific Fleet accounted
itself well against
Japan in the last months of the war.
General Hastings Ismay, chief of staff to Winston Churchill, described
...tough as nails and carried himself as stiffly as a poker. He was
blunt and stand-offish, almost to the point of rudeness. At the start,
he was intolerant and suspicious of all things British, especially the
Royal Navy; but he was almost equally intolerant and suspicious of the
American Army. War against
Japan was the problem to which he had
devoted the study of a lifetime, and he resented the idea of American
resources being used for any other purpose than to destroy the
Japanese. He mistrusted Churchill's powers of advocacy, and was
apprehensive that he would wheedle President Roosevelt into neglecting
the war in the Pacific.
Contrary to British opinion, King was a strong believer in the Germany
first strategy. However, his natural aggression did not permit him to
leave resources idle in the Atlantic that could be utilized in the
Pacific, especially when "it was doubtful when — if ever — the
British would consent to a cross-Channel operation". King once
complained that the Pacific deserved 30% of Allied resources but was
getting only 15%. When, at the Casablanca Conference, he was accused
by Field-Marshal Sir Alan Brooke of favoring the Pacific war, the
argument became heated. The combative General
Joseph Stilwell wrote:
"Brooke got nasty, and King got good and sore. King almost climbed
over the table at Brooke. God, he was mad. I wished he had socked
Following Japan's defeat at the Battle of Midway, King advocated (with
Roosevelt's tacit consent) the invasion of Guadalcanal. When General
Marshall resisted this line of action (as well as who would command
the operation), King stated the Navy (and Marines) would then carry
out the operation by themselves, and instructed Admiral Nimitz to
proceed with preliminary planning. King eventually won the argument,
and the invasion went ahead with the backing of the Joint Chiefs. It
was ultimately successful, and was the first time the Japanese lost
ground during the war. For his attention to the Pacific Theatre he is
highly regarded by some Australian war historians.
In spite of (or perhaps partly because of) the fact the two men did
not get along, the combined influence of King and General Douglas
MacArthur increased the allocation of resources to the Pacific
Court-martial of Charles B. McVay III
Another controversy involving King was his role in the later annulled
court-martial of Captain Charles B. McVay III, commander of
USS Indianapolis, possibly as retaliation for being reprimanded
by McVay's father much earlier.
While at the Naval Academy, King met Martha Rankin ("Mattie") Egerton,
Baltimore socialite, whom he married in a ceremony at the Naval
Academy Chapel on 10 October 1905. They had six daughters, Claire,
Elizabeth, Florence, Martha, Eleanor and Mildred; and then a son,
Ernest Joseph King, Jr. (Commander, USN ret.).
Dates of rank
Midshipman – June 1901
Lieutenant (junior grade)
7 June 1903
7 June 1906
1 July 1913
1 July 1917
21 September 1918
Rear Admiral (lower half)
26 April 1933
29 January 1938
1 February 1941
17 December 1944
King never held the rank of lieutenant (junior grade) although, for
administrative reasons, his service record annotates his promotion to
both lieutenant (junior grade) and lieutenant on the same day.
All DOR referenced from Buell's "Master of Sea Power", pp. xii–xv.
Awards and decorations
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Naval Aviator Wings
Navy Distinguished Service Medal
with two stars
Spanish Campaign Medal
Mexican Service Medal
World War I
World War I Victory Medal
with "Atlantic Fleet" clasp
American Defense Service Medal
with "A" Device
American Campaign Medal
World War II
World War II Victory Medal
National Defense Service Medal
King was also the recipient of several foreign awards and decorations
(shown in order of acceptance and if more than one award for a
country, placed in order of precedence):
Grand Cross of the National Order of the
Légion d'honneur (France)
Croix de guerre (France) 1944 (attachment(s) unknown)
Commander of the Order of Vasco Nunez de Balboa (Panama) 1929
Officer of the
Order of the Crown of Italy
Order of the Crown of Italy 1933
Knight of the Grand Cross of the
Military Order of Italy
Military Order of Italy 1948
Order of Naval Merit (Brazil), Grand Officer 1943
Order of Naval Merit (Cuba)
Order of Naval Merit (Cuba) 1943
Estrella Abdon Calderon (Ecuador) 1943
Knight Grand Cross of the
Order of the Bath
Order of the Bath (United Kingdom) 1945
Order of the Sacred Tripod
Order of the Sacred Tripod (China) 1945
Grand Cross of the
Order of George I (Greece) 1946
Grand Officer of the Order of the Crown (1948)
Croix de Guerre (Belgium) (1948) (attachment(s) unknown)
Knight Grand Cross with Swords of the Order of Orange-Nassau
Grave of Admiral King
The guided missile destroyer USS King was named in his honor.
A major high school in his hometown of Lorain, Ohio, also bore his
name (Admiral King High School) until it was merged with the city's
other high school in 2010.
In 2011, Lorain dedicated a Tribute Space at Admiral King's
birthplace, and new elementary school in Lorain will bear his name.
In 1956, schools located on the U.S. Naval Bases and Air Stations were
given names of U.S. heroes of the past E.J. King High School, the
Department of Defense high school on Sasebo Naval Base, in Japan, is
named for him.
The dining hall at the U.S. Naval Academy, King Hall, is named after
The auditorium at the Naval Postgraduate School, King Hall, is also
named after him.
Recognizing King's great personal and professional interest in
maritime history, the Secretary of the Navy named in his honor an
academic chair at the
Naval War College
Naval War College to be held with the title of
the Ernest J. King Professor of Maritime History.
King Drive at Arlington National Cemetery is named in honor of Fleet
King Hall, the mess hall at the
United States Naval Academy, is named
in King's honor.
^ U.S. officers holding five-star rank never retire; they draw full
active duty pay for life.Spencer C. Tucker (2011). The Encyclopedia of
the Vietnam War: A Political, Social, and Military History. ABC-CLIO.
pp. 1685. ISBN 978-1-85109-961-0.
^ Buell, Master of Sea Power, p. 3.
^ Morison, The Battle of the Atlantic, p. 51.
^ Buell, Master of Sea Power, 1980, pp. 10–12, 15–41.
^ Martin Folly, Historical Dictionary of US Diplomacy
^ Gannon, Operation Drumbeat, p. 168.
^ "Full Text Citations For Award of The Navy Cross to Members of the
US Navy World War I". Archived from the original on 2007-09-29.
^ Young, Frank Pierce. "
Pearl Harbor History: Building The Way To A
Date Of Infamy". Retrieved 25 May 2013.
^ Buell, Master of Sea Power, 1980, pp. 54–55.
^ Buell, Master of Sea Power, 1980, p. 58.
^ Buell, Master of Sea Power, 1980, pp. 62–64.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, p. 187.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, pp. 190–193.
^ Huston, John W. (2002). Maj. Gen. John W. Huston, USAF, ed. American
Airpower Comes of Age: General Henry H. "Hap" Arnold's World War II
Diaries. Air University Press. p. 359.
^ Buell, Master of Sea Power, p. 76.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, p. 228.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, p. 211.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, p. 214.
^ William H. Patterson, Robert A. Heinlein: A Learning Curve'
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, pp. 226–227.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, pp. 240–242.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, p. 249.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, p. 266.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, p. 279.
^ Rebekah. "The Day that Will Live in Infamy…but it didn't have to".
The USS Flier Project. Retrieved 7 August 2012.
^ King and Whitehill, A Naval Record, p. 295.
^ David B. Woolner, Warren F. Kimball, David Reynolds: FDR's World:
War, Peace, and Legacies (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008), p.70.
^ Timothy J. Ryan and Jan M. Copes To Die Gallantly – The Battle of
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Borneman, Walter R. (2012). The Admirals: Nimitz, Halsey, Leahy and
King – The Five-Star Admirals Who Won the War at Sea
(Hardback)format= requires url= (help). New York: Little, Brown and
Company. ISBN 978-0-316-09784-0.
Buell, Thomas B. (1995). Master of Sea Power: A Biography of Fleet
Admiral Ernest J. King. Annapolis: Naval Institute Press.
Gannon, Michael (1991). Operation Drumbeat. New York: Harper Collins.
Jordan, Jonathan W. (2015), American Warlords: How Roosevelt's High
Command Led America to Victory in
World War II
World War II (NAL/Caliber 2015).
King, Ernest; Whitehill, Walter Muir (1952). Fleet Admiral King: A
Naval Record. New York City: W. W. Norton & Company.
Morison, Samuel Eliot (1947). Volume I. The Battle of the Atlantic,
September 1939 – May 1943. History of
United States Naval Operations
in World War II. Boston: Little, Brown and Company.
Wikiquote has quotations related to: Ernest King
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ernest King.
"Fleet Admiral Ernest Joseph King". Naval Historical Center,
Department of the Navy. 1 June 1996. Archived from the original on 29
December 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-30. Ernest King's biography on
official U.S Department of the Navy website.
O'Connor, Jerome (February 2004). "FDR's Undeclared War". Naval
History magazine. U.S. Naval Institute. Archived from the original on
2007-12-19. Retrieved 2007-12-30. An article documenting the
"sons of bitches" quote and other relevant facts.
24 Armed Trawlers of the RNPS 'Churchill's Pirate's' were sent to
protect the US coast in 1942.[permanent dead link]
Ernest J. King Papers 1897-1981 (bulk 1897-1953), MS 437 held by
Special Collections & Archives, Nimitz Library at the United
States Naval Academy
Harold R. Stark
United States Chief of Naval Operations
Chester W. Nimitz
Commander in Chief,
United States Fleet
30 December 1941 – 10 October 1945
ISNI: 0000 0000 8143 3115
BNF: cb12383645z (data)