While there were certainly many exciting days for the crews of the U.S. submarine chasers in WWI, there was also time to enjoy the surroundings. Here is a "day in the life" photo, no caption, so I don't have a date or place. Anyone recognize the location?
The crewmen in the foreground are mooring the boat, while everyone else appears to be looking around. I can't see a bearing indicator on the chaser in back, so this is most likely a post-war shot. My guess is that this is somewhere along the route from Inverness to the White Sea, maybe Norway. In mid-1919, a unit of U.S. submarine chasers were assigned to the Northern Russia Expedition, and sailed (literally, at times, with a sail) up the fjords of Norway, across the Arctic Circle, and ultimately to Archangel in the White Sea.
Officially, they were there to assist in the evacuation of U.S. troops in the context of the end of WWI and the ongoing turmoil of the Russian Revolution. Unofficially, they appeared to have had quite a fine journey, taking in views like this, visiting the historic and ornate Solovetski monastery, and celebrating the Fourth of July with baseball games on Kego Island.
But even without the context, or if I've got it wrong, sometimes these unmarked, random snapshots of chaser scenes tell pretty interesting stories.
--Todd Woofenden, editor