USS Block Island


Hector Vernetti, USS Block Island CVE 21 veteran, holding his hand-made memorial to his lost ship, which was lost as the result of 3 German torpedoes on May 29, 1944 off the coast of Africa.


A great professor told me once, “A good research project is very much like chipping away in an avalanche zone.” I found this statement true from my time at the Block Island Historical Society. As a summer intern in 2003 I uncovered boxes of World War II material related to naval history. Combining this material I realized this collection all centered around two World War II era aircraft carriers both named the USS Block Island, CVE 21 & CVE 106. What stemmed from this discovery included conducting oral histories with individual sailors connected to the vessels, attending annual veterans reunions, the production of an exhibition, the hosting of an annual reunion on Block Island in 2007, and lastly my dissertation topic. Currently I have an manuscript under peer review on the history of these vessels with the University of Alabama Press.



For information on the 2007 Reunion, which was held on Block Island, click here