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United States Naval Institute
Location Annapolis, Maryland
Key people Peter H. Daly (CEO)

The United States Naval Institute (USNI), based at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, is a private, non-profit, professional military association that seeks to offer independent, nonpartisan forums for debate of national defense issues.[1] Established in 1873, it claims 48,000 members, mostly active and retired members of the United States Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard.

The organization has no official or funding ties to the Academy or the U.S. Navy, although it is based at the Naval Academy through permission granted by a 1936 Act of Congress.

The Institute publishes magazines and books and runs several annual conferences on security matters in Washington, D.C.; San Diego, California; Norfolk, Virginia; and elsewhere in the United States. It maintains one of the world’s largest private collections of military photographs: more than 450,000 images of people, ships and aircraft from all branches of the armed forces. The photographs date from the American Civil War to the present.

The Institute's mission is: "to provide an open forum for the exchange of ideas, to disseminate and advance the knowledge of sea power, and to preserve our naval and maritime heritage." It supports the professional development of its active-duty members by providing articles, books, and digital content about military career challenges.

HistoryEdit

On October 9, 1873, 15 naval officers gathered at the Academy's Department of Physics and Chemistry building in Annapolis to discuss military history and strategy. The founders of the U.S. Naval Institute were: Rear Admiral John L. Worden (former captain of the USS Monitor), Commodore Foxhall Parker, Lieutenant Charles Belknap, Commanders Edward Terry and S. Dana Greene, Chief Engineer C. H. Baker, Medical Director Philip Lansdale, Pay Inspector James Murray, Lieutenant Commanders P. E. Harrington, J. E. Craig, Casper F. Goodrich, P. H. Cooper, C. J. Train, Lieutenant Willard H. Brownson, and Marine Corps Captain McLane Tilton. In 1999, the organization dedicated its new headquarters, named Beach Hall to honor the contributions of Edward L. Beach, Jr. and his father and namesake, Edward L. Beach, Sr., who served as the Institute's secretary-treasurer.

Publications and productsEdit

The monthly magazine Proceedings is the Institute’s flagship publication. Published since 1874, it is the third-oldest continuously published magazine in the United States. It has carried articles by Secretaries of Defense Caspar Weinberger, Dick Cheney, and William Perry; journalists Bob Woodward, Ben Bradlee, Evan Thomas, David Hartman, and Thomas Ricks; every Secretary of the Navy, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and top leaders of the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. The magazine also publishes articles of interest to its membership and in advancement of its mission. Roughly a third are written by active-duty personnel, a third by retired military, and a third by civilians.

The USNI bimonthly Naval History magazine explores the role of sea power in U.S. history. Contributors have included historians David McCullough and James M. McPherson; former sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen such as Ernest Borgnine, Gene Hackman, and Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.; newsman Walter Cronkite, who covered the Invasion of Normandy in 1944 for United Press; and NBC television anchor Tom Brokaw.

USNI’s "Naval Institute Press" imprint publishes several dozen books each year. Its twice-yearly catalog includes works on history, biography, professional military education, and occasional works of popular fiction, including Tom Clancy's first novel, The Hunt for Red October; and Stephen CoontsFlight of the Intruder. Among the professional development titles are The Bluejacket's Manual, Naval Shiphandling, The Marine Officer’s Guide, and The Coast Guardsman’s Manual.

The Institute’s Web site includes reader forums and the Get the Gouge site aimed at younger readers. In December 2008, the Naval Institute launched a blog whose writers include Navy Admiral James G. Stavridis and Admiral Thad Allen, the 23rd Commandant of the Coast Guard.

In 2007, USNI produced Americans At War, a series of video interviews with U.S. combat veterans of conflicts dating to World War I. Former President George H. W. Bush, Senators Bob Dole, Daniel Inouye, Bob Kerry, and other men and women described how combat changed their lives. The series was broadcast on Public Broadcasting Service television stations nationwide.

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