Captain Reginald Nicholson, USS Nebraska

Born December 15, 1852 in Washington D.C. to the son of a Commodore, he joined the Navy at age 12 as an orderly for his father who was Commanding Officer of the USS State of Georgia operating as a Union blockade of Wilmington, North Carolina. In September 1869 he was appointed to the Naval Academy, he graduated in 1873.  His first assignment was on the sloop-of-war USS Portsmouth where he stayed to promotion as Master.  His next assignment at sea was the USS Mohican in the Pacific Squadron from 1885-1888 when he was promoted to Lieutenant.  Between 1893 to 1899 he served on the Monterey, Thetis, and at the Washington Navy Yard.  In December 1897 he was assigned to the USS Oregon, then on October 1, 1898 the new torpedo boat Farragut and was a Lieutenant Commander at the outbreak of the Spanish- American War.  He served as Chief Navigation Officer of the USS Oregon when the warship raced around Cape Horn to join the Atlantic Fleet in crushing Admiral Cervera's squadron at Santiago.  In 1907 he took command of the Battleship Nebraska, joined the fleet on May 5th to steam through the Golden Gate and into San Francisco as one of two ships to relieve of the USS Maine and Alabama.  After the cruise he became Chief of the Bureau of Navigation, and then sea command as Rear Admiral to the orient where he reached 62, and transferred to the retired list after six months duty.  He was recalled to duty at the entry to the World War and headed the American Naval Mission in Chile, Peru and Ecuador.  He died at age 87 from illness.

The photograph at right is an original, autographed picture of Reginald Nicholson.


The photograph below was taken in October 1907 at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton and shows Captain Nicholson and a group of officers and senior men of his command.  The photo belonged to one of the young officers of his command.  On back are their names and the location, "In the rear is the after superimposed turret - 2-12" guns and 2- 8" guns.  I will get the 8" turret and will try to make a good record this year, as the ship is out after the Navy record already.




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