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Assistant Secretary of the Navy

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The personal flag used by Assistant Secretaries of the Navy.
The personal flag used by Assistant Secretaries of the Navy.

Assistant Secretary of the Navy (ASN) is the title given to certain civilian senior officials in the United States Department of the Navy.

From 1861 to 1954, the Assistant Secretary of the Navy was the second-highest civilian office in the Department of the Navy (reporting to the United States Secretary of the Navy). That role has since been supplanted by the office of Under Secretary of the Navy and the office of Assistant Secretary of the Navy has been abolished. There have, however, been a number of offices bearing the phrase "Assistant Secretary of the Navy" in their title (see below for details).

At present, there are four Assistant Secretaries of the Navy, each of whom reports to and assists the Secretary of the Navy and the Under Secretary of the Navy:


The Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Navy was established in 1861, to provide a senior deputy to the Secretary. The Assistant Secretary was responsible for the Navy's civilian personnel, as well as for administration of shore facilities (such as naval bases and shipyards). Gustavus Fox was the first to hold the post, serving throughout the Civil War. The office was disestablished in 1869, during Reconstruction, but was reestablished by Congress on July 11, 1890. James R. Soley was the first to be appointed to the newly reestablished position.

The Assistant Secretary was the Navy's number-two civilian until 1940, when Congress established the position of Under Secretary of the Navy, who was given oversight of the Assistant Secretary's activities. James V. Forrestal, later Secretary of Defense, was the first to serve as Under Secretary; he held the post until 1944, when he became Secretary of the Navy.

During the 20th century, the responsibilities of the Assistant Secretary were divided among several officials. During the 1920s, for example, to reflect the increasing importance of naval aviation, Congress established the position of Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Air.

The office of Assistant Secretary of the Navy was disestablished in 1954.[1]

Famous Assistant Secretaries of the Navy

Assistant Secretaries of the Navy, 1861-1954[3]

Picture Name Assumed Office Left Office President Appointed By Secretary Served Under
Gustavus Fox.jpg
Gustavus Fox August 1, 1861 November 26, 1866 Abraham Lincoln Gideon Welles
William Faxon.jpg
William Faxon June 1, 1866 March 3, 1869 Andrew Johnson Gideon Welles, Adolph Edward Borie, George Maxwell Robeson, Richard Wigginton Thompson, Nathan Goff, Jr., William Henry Hunt, William Eaton Chandler, William Collins Whitney
James R. Soley.jpg
James R. Soley July 18, 1890 March 19, 1893 Benjamin Harrison Benjamin Franklin Tracy
William McAdooNJ.jpg
William McAdoo March 20, 1893 April 18, 1897 Grover Cleveland Hilary Abner Herbert
Theodore Roosevelt, New York City police commissioner.jpg
Theodore Roosevelt April 19, 1897 May 10, 1898 William McKinley John Davis Long
Charles Herbert Allen, 1898.jpg
Charles Herbert Allen May 11, 1898 April 21, 1900 William McKinley John Davis Long
Frank W. Hackett (Assistant Secretary of the Navy).jpg
Frank W. Hackett April 24, 1900 December 16, 1901 William McKinley John Davis Long
Charles Hial Darling.jpg
Charles Hial Darling December 17, 1901 October 30, 1905 Theodore Roosevelt John Davis Long, William Henry Moody, Paul Morton, Charles Joseph Bonaparte
Truman Handy Newberry.jpg
Truman Handy Newberry November 1, 1905 November 30, 1908 Theodore Roosevelt Charles Joseph Bonaparte, Victor Howard Metcalf
Herbert Livingston Satterlee circa 1900.jpg
Herbert L. Satterlee December 3, 1908 March 5, 1909 Theodore Roosevelt Truman Handy Newberry
Beekman Winthrop by George Bain (cropped).jpg
Beekman Winthrop March 6, 1909 March 16, 1913 William Howard Taft George von Lengerke Meyer
Franklin Roosevelt Secretary of the Navy 1913.jpg
Franklin D. Roosevelt March 17, 1913 August 26, 1920 Woodrow Wilson Josephus Daniels
Gordon Woodbury (Assistant Secretary of the Navy).jpg
Gordon Woodbury August 27, 1920 March 9, 1921 Woodrow Wilson Josephus Daniels
Theodore Roosevelt Jr. March 10, 1921 September 30, 1924 Warren Harding Edwin Denby
Theodore Douglas Robinson (Assistant Secretary of the Navy).jpg
Theodore Douglas Robinson November 11, 1924 March 4, 1929 Calvin Coolidge Curtis Dwight Wilbur
Ernest Lee Jahncke - Assistant Secretary of the United States Navy in 1930.jpg
Ernest L. Jahncke April 1, 1929 March 17, 1933 Herbert Hoover Charles Francis Adams III
Henry Latrobe Roosevelt (Assistant Secretary of the Navy).jpg
Henry L. Roosevelt March 17, 1933 February 22, 1936 Franklin D. Roosevelt Claude Augustus Swanson
Charles Edison.jpg
Charles Edison January 18, 1937 January 1, 1940 Franklin D. Roosevelt Claude Augustus Swanson
Lewis Compton (Assistant Secretary of the Navy).jpg
Lewis Compton February 9, 1940 January 10, 1941 Franklin D. Roosevelt Charles Edison
Asst Navy Sec Ralph A Bard.jpg
Ralph Austin Bard February 24, 1941 June 24, 1944 Franklin D. Roosevelt William Franklin Knox
Streuve Hensel (Assistant Secretary of the Navy).jpg
H. Struve Hensel January 30, 1945 February 28, 1946 Franklin D. Roosevelt

Harry S. Truman

James Vincent Forrestal
W. John Kenney.jpg
W. John Kenney March 1, 1946 September 19, 1947 Harry S. Truman James Vincent Forrestal
Mark E. Andrews (Assistant Secretary of the Navy).jpg
Mark E. Andrews January 21, 1948 February 15, 1949 Harry S. Truman John L. Sullivan
John T. Koehler February 18, 1949 October 3, 1951 Harry S. Truman Francis P. Matthews
Herbert R Askins.jpg
Herbert R. Askins October 3, 1951 January 20, 1953 Harry S. Truman Dan A. Kimball
Raymond H. Fogler June 22, 1953 October 4, 1954 Dwight D. Eisenhower Robert B. Anderson, Charles S. Thomas

Defunct Offices Bearing the Title of "Assistant Secretary of the Navy"

Office Name Year Created Year Abolished
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (AIR) 1926 1959
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Installations and Logistics) ca. 1960s? ca. 1970s?
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Material) ca. 1950s? ca. 1950s?
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research and Development) 1959 1977
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Engineering and Systems) 1977 1990
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Shipbuilding and Logistics) 1990

External links


  1. ^ "Assistant Secretary Of The Navy – List of Commanding Officers and Senior Officials of the US Navy". Retrieved 2013-06-17.
  2. ^ "Theodore Roosevelt and the Navy by The Theodore Roosevelt Assopciation". 2013-02-01. Retrieved 2013-06-17.
  3. ^ "Source: Naval Historical Center Roster List at". Retrieved 2013-06-17.
This page was last edited on 5 May 2020, at 14:01
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