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Eugene P. Rankin Personal Papers
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Box 01

Physical Description: World War Two and Aircraft

Folder 01 – Impact Magazines

Physical Description: Folder contains 3 magazines detailing allied air forces in World War II. 1. Impact “US Tactical Air Power in Europe”, magazine detailing allied air superiority in the European Theater of World War II. 2. Impact “Air Victory over Japan,” magazine detailing the various bombs used and dropped on Japan in World War II. This was the final issue of Impact magazine. 3. Impact “Strategic Air Victory in Europe,” magazine focused on the tactics of bombing missions in the European Theater of World War II.

Folder 02 – Weekly Intelligence

Physical Description: Containing 6 booklets about various situations and tactical developments in the Pacific Theater. 4. Weekly Intelligence Volume 1 Number 52, July 9, 1945. 5. Weekly Intelligence Volume 2 Number 2, July 23, 1945. 6. Weekly Intelligence Volume 2 Number 3, July 30, 1945. 7. Weekly Intelligence Volume 2 Number 4, August 6, 1945. 8. Weekly Intelligence Volume 1 Number 51, July 2, 1945. 9. Weekly Intelligence Volume 2 Number 1, July 16, 1945.

Folder 03 – Know your Enemy

Physical Description: Contains 5 booklets about Japanese tactics late in the war ranging from suicide tactics to their Battleships and history. 10. Guide to the status of the central Pacific islands. August 6, 1945. A booklet largely about the how Japanese defenders hold out despite insurmountable force. 11. “The development of Japanese sea power”, details different ships the Japanese have at their command and general synopsis of Japan’s naval history. 12. “Japanese Military Caves on Peleliu” 13. “Jap Medical Problems in the South and Southwest Pacific,” 25 December 1944. 14. “Suicide Weapons and Tactics” Describes the strategies of suicide bombing, how to prevent said attacks and questioning their effectiveness.

Folder 04 – Turtle Magazine Snippets

Physical Description: Dozens of pages taken from magazines and photocopied newspapers related to the Truculent Turtle ranging from 1946 to 1997 Picture of elderly Rankin in 1997 issue. Pictures of Turtle crew in nearly every snippet. Over 50 photo copies and snippets in total. Intact newspapers are in separate folders.

Folder 05 – Turtle Preliminary Reports

Physical Description: 15. Detailed plan and graph of ranging fuel usage distance of travel and engineering calculations. 16. Operation Turtle preliminary report spanning over 20 pages.

Folder 06 – Turtle Newspapers

Physical Description: Stored newspapers to prevent acidification of other documents. 17. Intact newspaper snippets from 1946 detailing the Truculent Turtle 18. Newspaper fragment from 1997 about Rankin and the Turtle. 19. Several photocopied newspapers.

Folder 07 – Turtle and Aviation Magazines

Physical Description: Contains 3 magazines about aviation. 20. Foundation Volume 14 Number 2 Fall 1993. It contains an article about the Truculent Turtle. 21. The Log, Volume 39, January 13, 1950. Within is information about the Turtle. 22. Profile Publications, The Lockhead P2V Neptune number 204.

Folder 08 – Truculent Turtle Photographs

Physical Description: 2 original black and white photographs related to the Truculent Turtle. 23. Picture of the 4 crew members. 24. Photograph of the turtle in flight.

Folder 09 – Miscellaneous

Physical Description: 25. US Navy P2V Air mail empty envelopes. 26. Third Report of the Commanding General of the Army Air Forces to the Secretary of War, November 12, 1945.

Folder 10 – Neptune Crew P-2v Neptune Record Flight Biographies and general documents

Physical Description: 27. Truculent Turtle flight log containing information on refueling and other important activities related to the successful flight. 28. Navy Aeronautic Association letters entailing discussion about pilot fatigue, timings and general information about the flight. 29. 2 Letters between “Gene” “Tom” and “Jed”. How they fit into the story is unknown 30. Several naval messages related to flying on pink paper. 31. Naval communication once classified documents about the Truculent Turtle. 32. Navy Immediate Release document planning the events of the Turtle. 33. Map of the proposed path that the Turtle would take. 34. Press release document making the motives of the Turtle clear. 35. Printed draft of a news bureau 25 years after the flight about the Turtles’ flight. 36. Navy Department office of the chief of naval operations memorandum about long range flight and how it is related to the Truculent Turtle. 37. Synopsis of events in WWII, the Turtle and afterwards for Captain Thomas D. Davies. 7 April, 1964.

Box 02

Physical Description: Project Mercury and Project Gemini A box containing all related articles to project Mercury and Project Gemini but not inclusive to the USS Kearsarge. Includes many pictures related to project Mercury, many reports, magazines and newspapers.

Folder 11 – Newspapers #1 – 1960+.

Physical Description: 1. Morning Kay newspaper about Coopers recovery by the Kearsarge. 2. LIFE newspaper on general relativity and Gordon Cooper. 3. “Extra” intact newspaper detailing Cooper’s 22 orbits. 4. GreenWatch time newspaper speculating about the future of the space race after Cooper’s successful mission. 5. Daily News: “600,000 Mile Bullseye!” Newspaper elaborating on the Kearsarge recovery of Cooper. 6. New York Times May 19, 1963 Issue with many articles about astronauts and JFK. 7. New York Times “The News of the Week in Review” May 19, 1963. This details Gordon Cooper’s journey around the earth. 8. Daily News “City Hails Coop On Wednesday, He’ll get the Wildest Parade.”

Folder 12 – Newspapers #2. – 1963.


Folder 13 – CTF 2. – 1962.

Physical Description: 10. CTF 140. Project Mercury Recovery Training Pamphlet #2, Partial reproduction.

Folder 14 – CTF 3. - 1962.

Physical Description: 11. CTF 140 Project Mercury Recovery Training Pamphlet #3, Partial Reproduction.

Folder 15 – CTF 4. - 1962.

Physical Description: 12. CTF 140 Project Mercury Recovery Training Pamphlet #4.

Folder 16 – US Navy Congratulatory Message on Recovery of Mercury 9. - 1963.

Physical Description: 13. About 20 pages of congratulatory messages to the Kearsarge. 14. About 10 pages of messages directed directly to Eugene P Rankin.

Folder 17 – Press Packet on Project Mercury, 1962-1963.

Physical Description: 15. “The Mercury Network” Short document on intercontinental communication and astronauts. 16. “World Wide Support” 2 page document detailing the army of individuals behind project mercury. 17. Electrical Diagram about the network communications of “MA-9”. 18. 3 Page monologue by Captain Anderson documenting some of his personal experience as well as the Kearsarge’s role in project mercury. 19. “Pacific Missile Range” By the Office of information Air Force Missile Test Center for the press, same author(s) for items 20 – 24, 27, 29 and 30. 20. “Space Systems Division (SSD)”. 21. “The First Five Minutes”. 22. “The Launch”. 23. “Mercury Pilot Safety Program”. 24. “Fact Sheet Air Force Mercury Atlas Launch Vehicle”. 25. Map of the world and “Prime Recovery Areas” for Mercury capsules. 26. Recovery pictures. 27. “Recovery operations”. 28. Medical support team photographs. 29. “Medical Support Team”. 30. “Bioastronautics”.

Folder 18 – NASA General Information for Mercury 8 Recovery report.


Folder 19 – United States Navy “Report of Mercury 8 Recovery” Report


Folder 20 – NASA Files “General Information for Mercury Recovery Forces”


Folder 21 – Miscellaneous

Physical Description: 34. Small colored Pamphlet about project mercury’s flight plan, capsule, life support system, Attitude controls, retrograde system, Recovery sequence, Escape devices, Guidance, Tracking, Communications, and Test Programs. 35. ”Project Mercury: A Chronology” 225 page book by NASA. 1963.

Folder 22 – Magazines

Physical Description: 36. Time Magazine Volume 81 Number 21. “Astronaut Cooper” May 24, 1963. 37. Naval Aviation News 43rd Year of Publication. Naval Weapons number 00-75R-3. October 1962. 38. Naval Aviation News 43rd Year of Publication. Naval Weapons number 00-75R-3. August 1962. 39. 13 page draft for naval aviation news (not for publication) “The Search for the Neptune’s Soul”.

Binder 01 – Pictures

Physical Description: 40. 39 Official NASA Photographs of recovery of Wally Schirra from Sigma 7 capsule. 1 Signed by Wally Schirra. 41. 4 Official NASA Pictures of Schirra greeting people after his successful mission. 42. 4 Official NASA Pictures of Sigma 7 capsule being moved. 43. 11 Official NASA Photographs of Wally Schirra doing various activities including getting X-rayed, talking to people and sitting at a table. 44. 6 Photographs of various navy aircraft carriers and battleships.

Box 03

Physical Description: USS Kearsarge (CV-33) related documents.

Folder 23 – USS Kearsarge “Welcome Aboard” Packets, 1963

Physical Description: 1. Blue covered welcome aboard packet with a foreword by Eugene Rankin. 2. 3 Standard Welcome Aboard packets with more pictures than the previous. 3. 2 Pink printed Kearsarge welcome aboard newspaper like welcoming paper. 4. “Useful information for shipboard personal and their dependents” 7 Pages. February 9,1963.

Folder 24 – Kearsarge Newspapers. 1962-1963.

Physical Description: 5. “Kearsaga” August 1962. 6. PineyMaru USS Pine Island AV-12 Sayonara Volume 4 Number 3. June 12, 1962. 7. “Kearsaga” May 1963.

Folder 25 – News Clippings and Letters. 1962.

Physical Description: 8. 36 intact newspaper clippings related to the Kearsarge Orion collision. 9. Christmas card inside intact original envelope to Captain Rankin. December 7, 1962. 10. Air mail from Captain Walter Louis Curtis of the USS Kitty Hawk to Captain Rankin of the Kearsarge. December 14, 1962. 11. 3 personal correspondents to “Gene” December 12, 1962, 7 December, Unknown date.

Folder 26 - CO’s Messages / Kearsarge Mercury 9 Recovery 1 of 4.


Folder 27 - CO’s Messages / Kearsarge Mercury 9 Recovery 2 of 4.


Folder 28 - CO’s Messages / Kearsarge Mercury 9 Recovery 3 of 4.


Folder 29 - CO’s Messages / Kearsarge Mercury 9 Recovery 4 of 4.


Folder 30 – Manual, US navy Instructions to destroyers on project mercury recovery. 1963.

Physical Description: 16. Declassified Operation Order 301-63 March 9. Provides instructions and objectives for astronaut recovery. Also includes other related activities. Hand written date of “7-14 on front cover. Estimated 50 pages in length.

Folder 31 – USS Kearsarge Messages T300-To Mission KN Accomplished 1963.

Physical Description: 17. Over 70 pages of naval communications entailing the successful completion of the Kearsarge’s role in project mercury. At one point, was confidential. March 9, 1963.

Folder 32 – USS Kearsarge Report on recovery of Mercury 8. 1962.

Physical Description: 18. Estimated 30 page report signed by Rankin entailing the recovery of Mercury 8 and the successful conclusion of said project. The report contains detailed maps and images related to project mercury.

Folder 33 – USS Kearsarge/ Mercury 9 Miscellaneous 1. 1963.

Physical Description: 19. 5 organized binder assortment organizers with contents. Organized as “MA-9”, “STATUS-RPTS”, “MA-9 CONFERENCES”, “PIO/SHIP RIDERS”, “MA-9 OPERATIONS” 20. 3 declassified US Naval communication papers to the Kearsarge.

Folder 35 – USS Kearsarge/ Mercury 9 Miscellaneous 3. 1963

Physical Description: 22. Estimated 15 declassified US Navy Kearsarge communications. Labeled as “MA-9 COMMUNICATIONS”. 23. Binder flap labeled “MA-6 COSTS” with around 30 organized communication papers. 24. 4 unsorted declassified yellow communication papers.

Folder 36 – Kearsarge Battle Group OP order – Recovery of Mercury. September 8, 1963.


Folder 37 – USS Kearsarge / Mercury 8 Press Releases. October 1962.

Physical Description: 26. Over 200 original naval messages from the Kearsarge to the press. All of which are related to the Kearsarge in some way. 1962. 27. 4 Photocopies of some of the messages from item 26. Importance suspected on content of message. October 3, 1962. 28. 8 cards with printed speeches directed at “Madam Chairman” and “M Chairman” The speech entails a formal introduction and a dramatic anecdote about the role of the Kearsarge in the Mercury project. 29. 48 teletext messages detailing the recovery of the astronauts in the Mercury project, the history of the Kearsarge and various other related pieces of information.

Folder 38 – USS Kearsarge Mercury 9 Emergency SAR procedures.

Physical Description: 30. Estimated 20 pages of emergency procedures, diagrams, tables, instructions, and notices. Many directed to or associated with Rankin and or the Kearsarge.