In September 1910, a keen-minded engineer named Washington Irving Chambers became the central point of contact for aviation matters in the Navy Department. During his three years on the job, Captain Chambers devoted all his energies and intellect to generating interest in aviation in the U.S. Navy and to stimulating research in aerodynamics. Naval aviation soon took its first tentative steps toward going to sea. Glenn Curtiss and Eugene Ely showed the world that airplanes could operate from a man-of-war; the first cadre of pilots was trained; and naval officers flew airplanes from catapults.Get a fresh cup of coffee and head on over to the USNI's festival of 13XX Fullbore.
And remember - it isn't academic. There is a reason that Gen. Mattis and ADM Stavridis are such supporters of the study of history - as all professionals are - it is because it gives you a window into the future and provides a foundation to making decisions today.