Charles Bowers Momsen

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Vice Admiral Charles Bowers Momsen, (21 June, 1896 – 25 May, 1967) served in the United States Navy. Momsen would become famous for his innovations in submarine rescue techniques and hardware, and most of all for rescuing the crew of the sunken U.S.S. Squalus in 1939.

Life & Career

Charles Bowers Momsen was born in Flushing, New York on 21 June, 1896.

Momsen was appointed to the U.S. Naval Academy on 23 June, 1914 from Minnesota.[1] In the wake of a cheating scandal in 1916 examinations were made exceptionally stringent and Momsen was one of many cadets who suffered, being forced to resign after marginally failing his Spanish language course. He was able to secure re-entry thanks to dogged correspondence with Democratic Congressman Carl C. Van Dyke, and graduated with the Class of 1919.[2]

See Also


  • Maas, Peter (2001). The Terrible Hours: The Greatest Submarine Rescue in History. New York: Perennial.

Naval Appointments
Preceded by
Conrad A. Krez
Captain of U.S.S. O-15
before 1 Jan, 1924[3]
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Herbert W. Jackson
Captain of U.S.S. R-24
before 1 Jul, 1924[4] – after 1 Jan, 1925[5]
Succeeded by


  1. Register of Officers, 1915. p. 154.
  2. Maas. p. 55-56.
  3. Register of Officers, 1924. pp. 104-105.
  4. Navy Directory 1 July, 1924 p. 169.
  5. Register of Officers, 1925. pp. 100-101.