A tough, aggressive officer, Admiral Ernest J. King was one of the most prominent Allied military leaders of World War II. In 1941, he was appointed commander in chief of the Atlantic Fleet and as such oversaw the fulfillment of lend-lease programs to Great Britain and the Soviet Union. After the Japanese raid on Pearl Harbor, he was selected to fill the new billet of commander in chief, U.S. Fleet (COMINCH), assuming operational control of all American naval forces. In early 1942, Admiral Harold R. Stark resigned as chief of naval operations (CNO), and President Roosevelt signed an executive order naming King to serve as both COMINCH and CNO. King was also a member of the newly formed Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Combined Chiefs of Staff, through which he played a pivotal role in the shaping of Allied grand strategy from the Arcadia Conference to Potsdam.
Official Papers of Fleet Admiral Ernest J. King primarily contains records from the 1940s, of which the first series, correspondence and memorandums, makes up the bulk. The collection also contains:
King's personal copies of the minutes of the Combined Chiefs of Staff meetings, 1941-1945
Agendas, minutes, and working papers for conferences between King and Admiral Chester Nimitz
Studies of the office of the CNO and the Navy
Postwar studies of logistics and supply systems
Material on the postwar armed services unification controversy
For researchers interested in wartime grand strategy, interservice rivalries, wartime operations planning, the battle for the Atlantic, and the Pacific War, these papers are an essential primary source.
Number of rolls: 10
"He shaves with a blowtorch."
-- Franklin D. Roosevelt, on Admiral Ernest J. King