Belknap, Edward. | Southern Illinois University Special Collections Research Center
Edward Belknap enlisted in the United States Navy in 1910 and served until his death in 1937. He worked first at the New York Shipbuilding Company while the USS Oklahoma was being built, and then assumed the post of gunner aboard that ship. In 1921, he requested (and was granted) permission to be transferred to the USS Chicago, and after receiving training at Sperry Gyroscope Works, took part in the Gyro School aboard the ship. In subsequent years, he served aboard the USS Seagull, Whitney, and Lexington, attaining the rank of chief gunner and then chief electrician.
Aside from his enlistment, Mr. Belknap contributed to the Navy by designing new weapons and tools. While he was able to patent his fuel-testing apparatus, his pilot bomb was actually tested as a potential military weapon.
Belknap was recognized for his initiative by the Navy and posthumously received a certificate of recognition signed by President John F. Kennedy.