Navy Renames 33 Ships, Buildings That Honored Confederacy

WASHINGTON  – Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro (photo above) announced that the Department of the Navy completed the renaming of 33 ships, buildings, and streets ahead of the Department of Defense’s 2024 deadline to rename all military property that honored the Confederacy.

“When Secretary Austin directed us to implement the recommendations of the Naming Commission, he instructed us to give proud new names – names that echo with honor, patriotism, and history; names that will inspire generations of service members to defend our democracy and our Constitution.” said Secretary Del Toro.

One of the first assets renamed was Maury Hall, an academic building at the United States Naval Academy, which was named after Matthew Fontaine Maury, considered the father of naval oceanography who joined the Confederacy.

In February 2023, Secretary Del Toro renamed the building Carter Hall, after former President Jimmy Carter, who graduated from the Naval Academy in 1946, and who was the only president to attend the service academy.

In addition to Carter Hall, other installations and platforms renamed included:

Home of the U.S. Naval Academy’s superintendent, Buchanan House was renamed Farragut House to honor Union Navy Admiral David Glasgow Farragut, a Civil War hero who became the first American naval officer to be appointed to the rank of rear admiral in 1862.

Maury Oceanographic Library was renamed to Dr. Walter H. Munk Oceanographic Library at Stennis Space Center. Dr. Munk was an American physical oceanographer, who was one of the first scientists to bring statistical methods to the analysis of oceanographic data. His work won awards including the National Medal of Science, the Kyoto Prize, and induction to the French Legion of Honor.

Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville was renamed to USS Robert Smalls (CG 62). Robert Smalls was born into slavery in South Carolina. A skilled sailor and was an expert navigator of southern coasts, Smalls was conscripted in 1862 to serve as pilot of the Confederate steamer Planter at Charleston. He executed a daring escape out of the heavily fortified Charleston harbor with his family, other enslaved people, and valuable military cargo onboard, and successfully surrendered Planter to the U.S. Navy.

Pathfinder-class Oceanographic Survey ship USNS Maury was renamed USNS Marie Tharp (T-AGS 66). This renaming honors Marie Tharp, a pioneering geologist and oceanographic cartographer who created the first scientific maps of the Atlantic Ocean floor and shaped our understanding of plate tectonics and continental drift.

In addition to platforms and building, the Department of the Navy renamed 14 streets across multiple naval installations.

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