Sam I Am Blog

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Saga of The U.S.S. Stone County

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United States Navy names a ship after an Ozarks county

The

U. S. S. Stone County

by Samuel E. Warren Jr.

The Ozarks is in the middle of the United States, surrounded by the Boston Mountains in Arkansas and the home of numerous hills and hollers. In terms of geography, Ozarks’ terrain is remote. Historians, geographers and map makers will probably disagree on the overall boundaries of the Ozarks.

For this country boy, the Ozarks in Missouri, starts around Jefferson City, Missouri’s state capitol, and extends down to Little Rock, Arkansas, Arkansas’ state capitol. The terrain is rugged with cliffs, bluffs, rocks and rivers. There are large bodies of water in the Ozarks, but some of those are man-made, like Table Rock Lake.

Ozarkers don’t always have “sea legs” and you don’t expect to find ports or harbors this far inland in the United States. Likewise you wouldn’t necessarily expect to find a lot of sailors in the Ozarks, but, then, again, America is a land of surprises and the unexpected.

Stone County, Missouri, in southwest Missouri, sits on the border with Arkansas. Before the construction of Table Rock Dam around the 1950s, James River would of probably been the largest body of water flowing through several southwest Missouri counties for about 133 miles. However Stone County, Missouri men as early as World War I saw service in the United States Navy and World War II welcomed more of Stone County’s sons into the ranks of America’s fleet.

Nonetheless, why would the United States Navy commission a ship after an Ozarks county in the middle of the United States ?

There is, no doubt, an “Official” answer to that question. But, in Stone County, the credit always goes to the late United States Seventh District Congressman Dewey Short, known as “The Orator of the Ozarks.”

Through the years, I had heard rumors about a U.S. Navy ship named “The U.S.S. Stone County.” I served in the United States Air Force, so I tend to be more interested in helicopters and airplanes. I have friends who served as Air Force historians, but I don’t know any U.S. Navy historians. Thus, the U.S.S. Stone County remained in the dry dock of my memory.

During Stone County, Missouri’s 160th Anniversary Celebration, Saturday, September 24, 2011, I had my trusty Canon camera and was shooting photos of the events.

The Ship’s Bell

Suddenly, there it was : The ship’s bell of the U.S.S. Stone County.

I snapped the photos and continued capturing other digital images. Once I downloaded the digital images, over the course of days, I looked at each image. The brass bell of the U.S.S. Stone County was one of the digital images that got underway in the ocean of my mind. The image of the ship’s bell just didn’t seem to flow with the rest of the images of the day’s events. I stayed on course working with the other images. Every now and then, the image of the ship’s bell would signal my memory.

I logged the ship’s bell as a stand alone photo that I would one day soon post to my blog. My decision to post the photo to my blog is because we, military retirees, like to come across information about bases we have served at, planes we have flown on or ships that some have served on.

October 13, 2011 – tonight – I decided to write a cutline for the photo and realized I knew nothing more about the ship other that it’s name and the fact that it was named after Stone County, Missouri.

What ever happened to the U.S.S. Stone County ?

Google time. I typed in U.S. Navy ship U.S.S. Stone County. A web page from the Naval Historical Center supplied the answers to the history of this ship. Briefly, the U.S.S. Stone County, originally named LST 1141, saw service in World War II, Korea and Vietnam.

If you are trying to find the ship, the U.S.S. Stone County, then, you will have to direct your search to the Kingdom of Thailand and ask about a ship named, “Lanta.” If you want to see the U.S.S. Stone County ship’s bell, then, put a stop at Galena, Missouri in your vacation plans to visit Silver Dollar City, Branson or Table Rock Dam. Be sure to contact Galena city officials a few days before you plan to visit to try to set up an appointment to see the bell. Contact City of Galena officials at :

City of Galena
111 Main Street
P.O. Box 234
Galena, MO 65656

(417) 357-6226
(417) 357-8033 fax

Hours M-F 8-4

Or email the City of Galena clerk: clerk@galenacityhall.org

U.S.S. Stone County crewmen can drop me an email at samuelwarren55@gmail.com and tell me their “war stories” about service on this ship and if they would like I will post their stories to my blog.

I’m sure the Stone County Historical and Genealogical Society would love to hear from people who served aboard the U.S.S. Stone County. The original Stone County Historical and Genealogical Society website is at this link: www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~mostone/society/society.html

A second generation web site for the Stone County Historical and Genealogical Society is currently under construction at this address: www.schgs.weebly.com

In honor of those U.S. Navy historians, who take the time to chronicle the events of ships and sailors, here, then, is the web address for the Department of the Navy, Naval Historical Center: www.history.navy.mil/ For people interested in the United States Naval history of the U.S.S. Stone County, here is the link to that web page: www.history.navy.mil/photos/sh-usn/usnsh-s/lst1141.html

U.S.S. Stone County – The Ship’s Bell The United States Navy ship, LST 1141, was named in honor of Stone County, Missouri. The ship saw service in World War II, Korea and Vietnam. The ship’s service history can be found at the Department of the Navy, Naval Historical Center. The ship’s bell is on display in Galena, Missouri, the county seat of Stone County, Missouri. Photo by Retired United States Air Force Staff Sgt. Samuel E. Warren Jr.
SC160_U S S Stone County ships bell 0602_Photo by Samuel E. Warren Jr. 0602_sized for Internet

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Written by samwarren55

October 14, 2011 at 10:43 AM

16 Responses

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  1. I love your Blog, it’s nice when you can tell somebody actuallly puts effort into a blog, and gives the blogs value.

    • Pellucid,

      Thank you. I do work on my blogs. I get a photo idea or a story idea and I work with it before I publish it. I try to find stories or photos that I think will entertain and inform readers. Since I have a staff of one, my blogs are “Daily Blogs,” but I update them as often as i can with information. Thank you again for the compliment.

      Sam

      samwarren55

      October 20, 2011 at 11:21 AM

  2. Who did you pay to do your blog? Its really nicely designed I bet that is why you get so much traffic!

    Current coupon Codes

    October 22, 2011 at 7:36 AM

    • I’m a one man newspaper. From editor to copy boy – that’s me. I like to write stories and shoot photos. When the inspiration for a story or photo strikes me I do it and then in reading the story or looking at the photo to edit it, I get an idea of the layout and then I try to post it to the electronic paper.

      Like the title states, this blog truly is – Sam I Am.

      I appreciate traffic and I like to hear from web surfers and readers.

      Sam

      samwarren55

      October 27, 2011 at 2:40 AM

  3. I love your Blog, it’s nice when you can tell somebody actuallly puts effort into a blog, and gives the blogs value.

    Isabel Moog

    October 26, 2011 at 4:08 AM

    • Thank you for the compliment. I try to provide readers with the sweets to tempt the eye and the cuisine to feed their minds.

      Sam

      samwarren55

      October 27, 2011 at 3:14 AM

  4. Hello,
    My name is Barry Beall, my father, Lt. Commander, Thomas J. Beall, U.S. Navy, Retired, was the commanding officer of the U.S Stone County (1141) in the 1960’s. I believe around 1965 to 1968 or around those years. I was young and don’t remember the exact years.
    Asking if there is anyone on this site that may have served under my father’s command?
    My father is now 80 years old and in failing health so this means the world to me if some one out there may remember those years, good or bad.
    I remember having a Christmas party aboard the ship while docked in San Diego during these years. I also remember one day sitting in the car with my mother and 2 sailors horsing around on deck and my mother saying “I hope your dad doesn’t come out and see that, we’ll be here another 2 hours”..these are a couple of memories I have of the U.S.S. Stone County.

    Thank you in advance for any responses and THANK YOU to everyone of you who have served our country and providing us with the freedoms we have. You are all beyond awesome.

    Barry Beall

    November 14, 2011 at 10:03 AM

    • Barry,

      Sorry to her about your father’s health. If you would like I could forward a copy of your email to the Stone County Historical and Genealogical Society and to some Vietnam Veterans in the U.S. Navy and the Marine Corps, who might have served aboard the U.S. S. Stone County or know of some other vets who might of.

      Sam

      samwarren55

      November 15, 2011 at 5:06 AM

    • I was on the Stone County from 1966-69, and your father wasn’t the skipper then, in 66 it was Roy K. Story, and after that was Tad Derf. Although Derf was relieved in the fall 68 when we returned from VN, I don’t remember who replaced him! Wish your Dad well!

      Bob Babcock DC2

      September 3, 2013 at 4:36 AM

  5. Sam,

    I was stationed on board the USS Stone County LST-1141 from January 8, 1965 until August 1, 1967. We deployed to the western Pacific and Vietnam 3 times during my time on board. She was a good ship. I have a DVD (LST Operations in Vietnam) of her loading cargo at the Tein Sha sand ramp in DaNang South Vietnam. I was on board when the video was made.

    Ed Nezworski, QMC, U.S. Navy, Retired

    Ed Nezworski

    April 2, 2012 at 9:11 AM

    • Hi Sam,

      Sorry about the delay in updating on here.

      My father, Lt. Cmdr. Thomas J. Beall passed away on Nov. 25th, 2011.
      He was laid to rest with a full military funeral @ Lee’s Summit Cemetery, Lee’s Summit, MO.

      Our family would like to thank all who have served or are currently serving our country and take a moment to say a prayer for all who have passed.

      Gods speed to all

      Barry A. Beall

      Barry Beall

      April 2, 2012 at 11:36 PM

      • Barry,

        I am sorry to hear about the passing of your father, Lt. Cmdr Thomas J. Beall.

        The passing of a veteran is always a loss of a great national treasure. The world at large seems unable to realize that it is the men and women in uniform, who through devotion to duty and love of country, make the significant changes to world affairs by their routine daily tasks.

        I would hope that your father’s former shipmates will pass along to you their service stories of serving alongside your father aboard the U.S.S. Stone County.

        The Immortality Of A Warrior is in the stories of service, in peace and war,that live on as a military legacy to provide knowledge for future generations, who don the uniform and accept the watch. May your father’s deeds live on in the pages of United States Navy history and be remembered by future generations of your family.

        I thank your father for his service.

        I express my condolences to you and your family.

        God Bless You,

        Sam

        samwarren55

        April 4, 2012 at 10:44 AM

    • Mr. Nezworski,

      Thank you for your comment about your service aboard the USS Stone County. Barry A. Beall is seeking stories about the people who served with his father aboard the vessel, I’m sure he would appreciate hearing from you.

      I am not familiar with U.S. Navy historians procedures for the inclusion of service stories into the archives, but, I encourage you to contact U.S. Navy Historical Archives or your nearest U.S. Navy base historian and pass on your memories.

      In Branson, Missouri there is an active ongoing veteran’s oral documentation project to record the service stories of veterans Unfortunately, I left the contact information back in the States when we moved overseas. However, Branson, Missouri hosts an Annual Military Appreciation Week when veterans organizations come together for reunions. I believe the documentation project is worked through the military museum in Branson. A great point of contact to begin with in Branson is the Disabled Vietnam Veterans, they provide the color guards for official functions and serve at local military funerals.

      Please, take the time, to have your service stories documented for future generations. The true value of history and the course of the future is in the stories of the people who live at the moment that the events occur. Uncle Sam put you “boots on the ground” in Southeast Asia, you should consider documenting your story for future Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines.

      Sam

      samwarren55

      April 4, 2012 at 11:23 AM

      • I am President of the Stone County Historical/Genealogical Society and would like the opportunity to talk with you about this. We are the proud owners of the Bell and have loaned it to the County for display.

        Kay Vinsand

        May 30, 2016 at 8:01 AM

  6. I don’t remember where we were, but i have a picture of 1141. I had just drove my Amtrac off it and took a picture of another coming down the ramp. I was somewhere off California 1954-56. We did go to Makushin Bay Alaska for cold weather in 1956, but we were on LST 527.

    Waymon Vest

    September 3, 2015 at 12:33 PM

  7. Please delete the rootsweb page information for the Stone County Historical/Genealogical Society — it is outdated and inaccurate in many ways — refer to facebook for the Stone County Historical/Genealogical Society and if any one knows how to work with the old rootsweb site please let me know so we can get the darn thing taken down or updated. The contacts there are not very helpful at all!

    Kay Vinsand

    May 30, 2016 at 8:00 AM


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