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First Name: Samuel

Last Name: Robison

Birthplace: Juniata County, PA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Middle Name: Shelburne

Date of Birth: 10 May 1867

Date of Death: 20 November 1952

Rank or Rate: Admiral

Years Served: 1888-1931
Samuel Shelburne Robison

Graduate, U.S. Naval Academy, Class of 1888

•  World War I (1914 - 1918)


Samuel Shelburne Robison

Admiral, U.S. Navy

Samuel Shelburne Robison was born on 10 May 1867 in Juniata County, PA. He entered the U.S. Naval Academy on 4 September 1884. After finishing his academic studies at Annapolis, he served two years at sea as a Passed Naval Cadet in USS Omaha on the Asiatic Station and was commissioned Ensign on 1 July 1890.

In 1891, he was transferred to USS Boston, still on the Asiatic Station; and, from 1893, he served in USS Thetis until ordered to the Mare Island Navy Yard in 1895. In 1896 he returned to the Asiatic Station in Boston. In August 1899 he was assigned to the League Island Navy Yard, Philadelphia, PA. He joined USS Alabama (BB-8) 15 September 1900, and two years later was transferred to USS Hull (DD-7), a torpedo boat destroyer. From September 1904 to July 1906, he served with the Bureau of Equipment at Washington, DC, then he returned to sea, serving first in USS Tennessee (CA-10) and later in USS Pennsylvania (ACR-4).

After a tour of duty in the Bureau of Engineering, he assumed command of USS Cincinnati (C-7), a unit of the Asiatic Fleet, on 25 October 1911. Upon his return to the U.S. in April 1914, he became commanding officer of USS Jupiter (AC-3). He held the rank of Captain from 1 July 1914, and he remained with Jupiter until 8 August.

World War I Service

On 12 October 1915, he assumed command of USS South Carolina (BB-26) and held that post until after the U.S. entered World War I. From July 1917 until September 1918, he commanded the Atlantic Submarine Force with additional duty as General Supervisor of all commissioned submarines in the Navy. For this duty he was awarded the Navy Cross. He was also made a Companion of the Order of the Bath for service to the British during the war.

In October 1918, he assumed command of Squadron 3, Patrol Force, and during the next month had additional duty as District Commander, Brest, France. In November, he was appointed U.S. Naval Representative on the Commission for executing the Naval Terms of the Armistice with Germany. After his return to the U.S. in March 1919, he commanded the Boston Navy Yard. In May 1921, he was sent to the Dominican Republic as Military Governor, serving until October 1922, when the Dominican Republic was turned back over to civilian control.

Post-War Service

A member of the General Board of the Navy from December 1922 until June 1923, he was appointed Commander-in-Chief, Battle Fleet, with the rank of Admiral, from 30 June 1923. With USS Washington (ACR-11) as his flagship, he commanded the U.S. Fleet during the year commencing August 1925. He then became Commandant of the 13th Naval District with the permanent rank of Rear Admiral. From June 1928 until his retirement in June 1931, he served as Superintendent of the Naval Academy.

Robison was advanced to the four-star rank of Admiral on the retired list with date of rank 16 Jun 1942, as highest rank held on the active list.

In Retirement

For a number of years after his retirement, Admiral Robison was Superintendent of the Admiral Farragut Academy, Toms River.


Robison is the brother-in-law of Navy Rear Admiral Charles F. Hughes.

Death and Burial

Admiral Samuel Shelburne Robison died on 20 November 1952 in Glendale, CA. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, V, in Section 2, Lot 892 WH.

Honoree ID: 636   Created by: MHOH




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