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First Name: Joseph

Last Name: Strauss

Birthplace: Mount Morris, NY, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Date of Birth: 16 November 1861

Date of Death: 20 December 1948

Rank or Rate: Admiral

Years Served: 1887-1925, 1937-1938
Joseph Strauss

•  Spanish-American War (1898)
•  World War I (1914 - 1918)


Joseph Strauss

Admiral, U.S. Navy

Joseph Strauss was born on 16 November 1861 in Mount Morris, NY. Strauss was commissioned as an Ensign on 1 July 1887. He began a distinguished career as a specialist in ordnance in June 1893 when he reported to the Bureau of Ordnance in Washington, DC. During the Spanish-American War, he served in the sloop USS Lancaster blockading the Cuban coast, then returned to the Bureau of Ordnance.

He established the Naval Proving Ground at Indian Head, MD, from 1900-02; served on a Special Board of Naval Ordnance in 1906; and was a member of the Joint Army-Navy Board on Smokeless Powders the following year. He conducted experimental work with torpedoes while commanding the cruiser USS Montgomery from 1909-11; commanded the pre-dreadnought battleship USS Ohio in 1912; then became Chief of Bureau of Ordnance on 21 October 1913.

Strauss assumed command of the super-dreadnought USS Nevada on 30 December 1916 and remained in command as the U.S. entered World War I. Detached from the battleship in February 1918, he was designated Commander, Mine Force, Atlantic Fleet. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal both for directing the laying of the North Sea Mine Barrage, and for the hazardous task of clearing it after peace came. In October 1919, he returned to the Navy Department to serve as a member of the General Board.

On 4 February 1921 Strauss was promoted to the four-star rank of Admiral and became Commander-in-Chief of the Asiatic Fleet. He resumed duty with the General Board in October 1922. The following year he also worked with Congress on the budget and appropriations. He transferred to the Retired List on 16 November 1925, but returned briefly to active duty from 8 October 1937 to 8 February 1938 to serve the Advisory Board on Battleship Plans.

Other Activities

Admiral Strauss was a founder of the Naval Historical Society and a long time financial adviser of the Navy Relief Society. Among his inventions were the superimposed system of mounting guns; the first spring recoil gun mount, the first disappearing mount for deck guns of submarines, and the 12-inch gun, the forerunner of the mighty guns for capital ships' main batteries. He received a special letter of appreciation from Secretary of the Navy Charles F. Adams in 1929 for his work on safety devices of submarines and the salvaging of sunken submarines.


The Navy guided-missile destroyer Joseph Strauss (DDG-16) was named after him.

Death and Burial

Admiral Joseph Strauss died on 30 December 1948. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA, in Section 2.

Honoree ID: 658   Created by: MHOH




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