We get a lot of questions during our program but probably the most commonly asked one is what were our classroom areas when the ship was still in service. Well that depends on which part of the program you are in. If you find yourself doing science then you are sitting where enlisted sailors would eat. The science classroom is located in what once was a mess hall. It would have functioned similarly to how your cafeteria works now. If you are in the middle of helping the Doolittle Raiders then you are in what was once a berthing area. That means that sailors would have slept there. Each sailor would have gotten their own bunk and there were 72 berthing areas total! Finally, if you or your teacher ever goes up to the education office you would be standing in the antisubmarine warfare room. It was known as ASCAC. In this room they would track and identify enemy submarines.
Have you ever heard the term invasive species? It refers to organism (either plant or animal) that have been moved to an area that they were not originally found in. Today they are a major problem around the world with many of them causing massive damage to the natural populations. Here in South Carolina, we are no different when it comes to be invaded. Many scientists are looking at how these introduced species are affecting the naturally occurring species. In fact here at Patriots Point we are partners with a College of Charleston professor Eric Sotka, who is looking at the effect that Japanese red algae is having here in Charleston. This project is open to the public as a citizen science project, so if you would like to learn more about check out our science spotlight page!
For those of you who have come to the USS Yorktown you know all about our animal room. People love to look at the burr fish, turtles, and frogs but they often miss one of our favorite animals in the room. The Mosquitofish might be small but it sure is interesting! First, when you look at them it sure is pretty easy to tell if you are looking at a boy or a girl. Females tend to be much bigger than males and have a large black spot on their side. The most interesting part of them is their name. They are named after one of our least favorite bugs, the Mosquito. Many people ask if that means they drink blood…. NO WAY! That would be crazy. One of their favorite meals just happens to be mosquito larvae. This means that in some small ponds around your house these fish could really help with the mosquitos you see in your yard. This just goes to show you; even the smallest among us can have a big impact.
There sure has been a lot of talk about the USS Clamagore, and what will happen to it. Eventually it will make its way down to the sunny state of Florida and be sunk to create an artificial reef. You might be asking yourself what exactly is an artificial reef? It normally refers to a man-made structure that is placed at the bottom of the ocean. This structure then begins to promote the growth of all kinds of life. Not only can these reefs provide much needed habitats for many different animals, but they can also do a lot for humans. They can help with beach erosion, recreational fishing and diving, and even improve surfing.
Did you know that Patriots Point has not always been called Patriots Point? Once, not too long ago it was called Hog Island, and it played an important part in the defense of Charleston during the Revolutionary War. Americans blocked Hog Island Channel by sinking ships and setting up mines so that the British could not gain access to the Cooper River. Over time the island was connected to the mainland due to the dredging of the Harbor. Today, Hog Island has been renamed and is no longer even an island.
Ahoy, matey! Today be talk like a pirate day! Did you know that Charleston has seen its fair share of pirate action?! Arguably one of the most famous pirates, Black Beard, once held the city’s harbor captive. He and his fleet blocked passage to and from the city taking over any ship that tried to pass. Taking hostages, he traded them for medical supplies for his men. This is just one of the many stories involving pirate action along the South Carolina coast.
Avast ye, set your inner pirate free today!
Hey guys! Oreo and Tiny here. We know that we are your favorite part of the Yorktown, so we commandeered the ship and decided to let you know what it’s like to be a turtle for a day. Well first things first, when the humans get here they have to turn our lights on. This is important because we are cold blooded which means we need the light to warm our bodies up so we can really move around. Are favorite morning activity is climbing up on our rock and to sun bathe. Once we are nice and warm the fun begins. We love to swim around our tank looking for food. Occasionally we like to see who can hold their breath the longest. Our personal best is about 1 hour. We like to end our day with a snack, preferably shrimp or fiddler crabs. Well that’s about it, hope you enjoyed a glimpse into our day!
Come hear their stories as we discuss what it was like to be in Iraq’s deadliest city. It will take place on board the USS Yorktown at 7:00 PM on September 6th.
See you there!
Can you believe all the animal species that we share the planet with?! Scientist estimate there could be as many as 8.7 million. We might not get to see all of them, but we sure can see a few amazing animals just by walking down the pier to the USS Yorktown. The Yorktown is nestled in an environment called an estuary. Being in this type of environment means that there are some pretty cool creatures that we regularly see while walking our school groups abroad. If it is low tide be on the lookout for blue crabs, flounder, Atlantic stingrays, and red drum but if the tide is high keep an eye out for needle fish, dolphins, and even migrating manatees.
Hey guys! Have you ever been like me and wondered why the USS Yorktown has a dog for a mascot? Well there is actually a great reason! One day a sailor brought a dog aboard the ship. Unfortunately, this was against the rules, and when the Captain found out about the dog he told them that they would have to take the dog back where it came from. However, the Captain changed his mind after the sailor told him that the dog’s name was Jock. This was the Captain’s nickname and he was so happy that the dog was named after him that he allowed the dog to stay aboard the ship. The sailors had lied to the Captain because they wanted to keep the dog, whose actual name was Scrappy. Now you know the story of how Scrappy came to be!
Patriots Point Education Department