General Dynamics Electric Boat

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The Electric Boat Corporation[1] (EB) is a division of General Dynamics Corporation. It has been the primary builder of submarines for the United States Navy for well over 100 years.

The company's main facilities are a shipyard in Groton, Connecticut and a hull-fabrication and outfitting facility in Quonset Point, Rhode Island.

Contents

History

The company was founded in 1899 by Isaac Rice as the Electric Boat Company in order to build to completion John Philip Holland's submersible designs which were developed at Lewis Nixon's Crescent Shipyard, located in Elizabeth, New Jersey, USA. The first submarine that this shipyard built was (originally) named the Holland VI, later to be known as USS Holland (SS-1). This was the first submarine to be purchased and commissioned into United States naval service on 11 April 1900. The success of Holland VI ushered in the demand for follow up models (A-class or Plunger class) that began with the prototype submersible Fulton built at the same shipyard where Holland was conceived. Many foreign governments were soon interested in John Holland's latest submarine designs and began purchasing the rights to build them under licensing contracts through Isaac Rice's Electric Boat Company. These governments included Great Britain, Royal Navy; Japan, Imperial Japanese Navy; Russia, Imperial Russian Navy; the Netherlands, Royal Netherlands Navy; and other countries.

These new weapons initially devised and developed by the Holland Torpedo Boat Company were now legitimized as genuine naval weapons by the world's most modern industrialized nations during the early part of the 1900s. They were meant to abide by the Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907, see submarine warfare, but during World War I Germany adopted unrestricted submarine warfare.

During World War I the company and its subsidiaries built 85 submarines and 722 submarine chasers for the U.S. Navy. After the war the Navy did not order another submarine until 1934. In World War II, the company built 74 submarines.

The firm renamed itself to General Dynamics Corporation in 1952, and when Convair was acquired the next year, the holding company assumed the "General Dynamics" name, with the submarine building operation retaining the "Electric Boat" name.[2]

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