Working at the U.S. Navy Torpedo Plant

African American man working in the packing and shelving area in 1950 at the Plant

Behind the scene of the Alexandria Gazette’s story on, “Working at the U.S. Navy Torpedo Plant,” dated November 28, 2018.

The U. S. Navy Torpedo Plant was an integrated work environment during the world wars. In 1920, many African Americans worked at the plant which included the following people:

Spencer Brent born 1900 in Virginia, he lived at 421 Princess Street. Spencer worked at the Torpedo Plant as a helper.

Lewis Williams born 1892 in Virginia, he lived at 936 North Columbus Street. Lewis worked at the Torpedo Plant as a laborer.

Henry Anderson born in Virginia, he lived at 609 North Henry Street. Henry worked at the Torpedo Plant as a laborer.

William H. Bell born 1887 in Virginia, he lived at 414 North Patrick Street. William worked at the Torpedo Plant as a janitor.

Omar Robertson born 1898 in Alabama, he lived at 1109 Queen Street. Omar worked at the Torpedo Plant as a laborer.

Joseph Randolph born 1899 in Richmond, Virginia, he lived at 1216 Princess Street. Joseph worked at the Torpedo Plant as a laborer. He moved to 212 North Payne Street where he died in 1935.

William E. Toliver born 1878 in Virginia, he lived at 1006 Wythe Street. William worked at the Torpedo Plant as a laborer.

Also African American women held important jobs at the Torpedo Plant, they worked in the file room and they held positions as clerk-typist. Many of the records they handled were records that were taken during World War II from Germany.

The United States Navy Torpedo Plant employed many African Americans at their plant. These man and women were the back bone of the Plant. Many African American men supplied the heavy laborer work that was necessary to transport torpedoes to the enemy countries during the war.

You can read the rest of the article in the Alexandria Gazette Newspaper dated November 28, 2018 on page 14 at http://connectionarchives.com/PDF/2018/112818/Alexandria.pdf.

This entry was posted in Black People of Alexandria, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Working at the U.S. Navy Torpedo Plant

  1. charles h hollins says:

    This is a great article my mother and uncle worked there during the war and only told me they work and had these small torpedoes on a chain, which was lost when we moved from the southside to north Columbus st.

    Like

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