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March 17th is Submarine Day

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If you're looking for something to do today then dive deep because it's Submarine Day!  No, not the sandwich!  Let's get right into celebrate Submarine Day!


Today is a holiday because this is the day that John Philip Holland, an Irish engineer, first successfully demonstrated his submarine called the Holland VI. Yes, that means it took many attempts to perfect this amazing, underwater vehicle.  In fact, he first submitted his submarine designs in 1875 to the United States Navy but they turned him down because they thought it wouldn't work. But his Irish brothers still believed in him and continued to fund his submarine ideas. He launched the Fenian Ram in 1881 but there were disputes over payment so they parted ways. But that's doesn't mean he gave up!

It wasn't until March 17th, 1898 that he successfully had the Holland VI dive and resurface during a trial run near Staten Island. This successful test took place only a month after that mysterious explosion that sunk the USS Maine, so Holland offered to show his submarine in action to the Navy. It was a success, they even fired the dynamite gun, so the Assistant Secretary of the Navy, Theodore Roosevelt, recommended that they buy the boat. And eventually they did; making this the Navy's first submarine, which was later named the USS Holland (SS-1).  That was a deep dive into history, wasn't it?


So how can you celebrate today?  Well, see if there are any Navy museums near you that will let you see one of these sneaky subs in person. That will really give you an idea as to the size of the submarines. Some of them are actually pretty small so it takes some guts to squeeze into one and plunge deep into the ocean.   Or you could talk to someone that is in the Navy and has been in a submarine themselves. When you hear first-hand stories of life on a submarine then it might change your mind as to how things really are. You'd be surprised to hear what really goes on in a submarine. Heck, I'd be surprised myself because I have no clue!  But sometimes movies portray things pretty accurately so it wouldn't hurt to watch a submarine movie today! Das Boot, The Hunt for Red October and Crimson Tide are some pretty classic options for you. And if you feel like some comedy then watch Down Periscope instead. But if you want something a little more realistic then you could watch a documentary about different submarines stories of the past.  Some amazing things have gone on in the depths of the ocean.  You could even get a submarine kit or toy today to mess around with. You could build one from scratch for something to set on your shelf and look at. Or you could get one that actually dives under water. They even make remote control ones!  It doesn't matter what you do today, I just hope you get fully submerged into the world of submarines.

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