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Broadcaster Press 7 February 19, 2019 www.broadcasteronline.com Wind Cave Surpasses USS Pierre Has State 150 Miles In Length Historical Society Remembering Other Pierre Vessels WIND CAVE NATIONAL PARK, S.D. – Cave explorers from Colorado recently surveyed 594 feet in Wind Cave, bringing the total length of surveyed passages to 150 miles. The cavers, Randy Macan, Shawn Lamley, Emma Paul, and Janis Mankovs, surveyed 10 hours Saturday, February 9, in the Half Mile Hall area of the cave. Modern day exploration began in the 1950s, with groups from the South Dakota School of Mines, the Colorado Grotto, and the National Speleological Society. Since then, hundreds of individuals have crawled, climbed, and squeezed through passages while exploring Wind Cave, making it the sixth-longest cave in the world. “Cave exploration is a critical part of managing the cave because it’s hard to protect something you don’t know you have,” said Park Superintendent Vidal Dávila. “We’d like to thank all the individuals who, over the years, donated their time exploring this massive cave system.” Most of the current cave exploration is done by volunteers from either the local Paha Sapa Grotto or the Colorado Grotto in Denver. On average, 2 miles are surveyed annually, and it is estimated over 3,000 leads, or unexplored openings, remain to be checked. Studies of airflow through the entrances reveal that potentially only 10% of the cave has been found. This echoes the sentiments of the cave’s first systematic explorer, 17-year old Alvin McDonald, who wrote in 1890, “Have given up the idea of finding the end of Wind Cave.” Exploration can lead to discoveries within discoveries, such as those now taking place at the bottom of known cave. Over five hundred feet beneath the surface lies a series of cave lakes. Part of the Madison Aquifer, the first lake was discovered by Herb Conn and David Schnute in 1968. Scientist from the University of Akron are studying the microbial life found in the lakes. Despite living in an environment with no sunlight or photosynthesis, the lakes contain a very diverse bacterial community of over 4,000 species, a large portion of which have never been identified and are unique only to Wind Cave. Perhaps someday the bacteria in the lakes could be used to produce compounds such as antibiotics that might be used as medicine. Wind Cave is open year-around with winter tours at 10 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. For more information about the cave and its history, visit www.nps.gov/wica PIERRE, S.D. – South Dakota U.S. Sen. in Portland, Ore. Emma’s husband, Emil Mike Rounds recently announced the Jassman, provided the Pierre Daily Capital naming of an Independence-variant, LitJournal with a description of the yards: “It toral Combat Ship, the “USS Pierre,” after is here that one sees hundreds of weldSouth Dakota's capital city. The ship is the ers, both young and old, men and women, third United States naval vessel named for moving up to start the welding of the Pierre. To celebrate this recent naming, seams of the various sections of steel … the South Dakota State Historical Society From a distance the ship yards look like offers the following background on the a large lumber yard, but when one comes previous vessels named for Pierre. within a close range one discovers that During World War II, the “SS Pierre it is steel sheets, steel beams, enormous Victory” (VC2-S-AP3), the first ship named stacks of large steel pipe, large drive (profor Pierre, was a cargo vessel which saw peller) shafts and bearings.” active service during the war. The Pierre Victory saw action in the The second vessel named for Pierre Pacific Theater of war. In early April 1945, was originally called “USS PC-1141,” which the Pierre Victory, two other Victory was a PC-461-class submarine chaser built ships and one amphibious assault ship for the United States Navy during World were stationed near Kerama Retto, a tiny War II. She was renamed “USS Pierre” (PCgroup of islands strategically located 15 1141) in 1956. The ship was decommismiles west of Okinawa, Japan. The convoy sioned from the U.S. Navy in October 1958 was attacked by kamikaze airplanes. The and transferred to the Indonesian Navy. Pierre Victory was the only ship to service The Pierre Victory was a Victory-class the assault and shot down one plane. merchant cargo ship built for the U.S. MarThe Pierre Victory and other Victoryitime Commission (USMC). The Maritime class cargo vessels were used during the Commission realized the need for a faster, post-war years to haul food and machinmore modern cargo ship to replace the ery to war-torn Europe, Russia and Asia. older Liberty-class. Victory ships transVictory ships were also used during the ported the same cargo tonnage as Liberty Korean War. ships, but were 60 percent faster, were The Pierre Victory was destined to join built stronger and were faster at loading the Navy’s mothball fleet at Astoria, Ore., and unloading cargo. in January of 1951. She did not go quietly. The length of the Victory-class ships After being stripped of her armaments at was 455 feet, with a width of 62 feet. The Portland, the Pierre Victory was towed vessel had a cruising range of 23,500 up the Columbia River. The hull of its first miles, held a crew of 62 men, had a top towboat, Henderson, was pierced and considered for the Robinson Award, the speed of 17 knots (about 20 mph) and cost sank. A second sternwheel boat, Jean, society’s highest honor, recognizing a $2.5 million in 1945 dollars. came to tow the ship, but ran into a dock, lifetime of preserving state history. The Mrs. Emma S. Jassman of Pierre, who damaging the paddle wheel. Finally, a fleet Robinson is not awarded every year. had five sons who served during World of four tugs -- the Chinook, Panther, Tiger The Schell Award, selected by a sepaWar II, was the sponsor of the ship and and Klickitat -- escorted the Pierre Victory rate panel of judges, is given to the author christened the “SS Pierre Victory” on Dec. to the mothball fleet. of the best article in the previous year’s 6, 1944. Mrs. Jassman was sent by the city Editor’s Note II: Mrs. Emma S. Jassman volume of “South Dakota History,” the of Pierre through the efforts of the Pierre of Pierre, who had five sons who served society’s award-winning quarterly journal. Chamber of Commerce. Pierre Mayor during World War II, christened the SS Nominations are also being sought for John B. Griffin was also at the christening, Pierre Victory on Dec. 6, 1944. (Photo two members of the society’s board of courtesy South Dakota State Historical trustees -- a member at-large and the pro- along with other Pierre residents. The Pierre Victory was built at the Society-Archives) fessional archivist. These nominees must Oregon Shipbuilding Company shipyards be members of the State Historical Society. The incumbents in those positions are Robert Kolbe of Sioux Falls (at-large) and Laurie Langland of Fulton (professional archivist). Trustee nomination forms may be obtained at the above information. They are due back to the society by March 1. The three-year trustee positions are voted on by members of the society. The winners are announced at the history conference on April 26. Call 605-773-6000 with questions on 201 W Cherry St. • Vermillion, SD either the Governor’s Awards or the board Phone: 624-4429 • Fax: 624-2696 of trustees openings. State Historical Society Seeks Nominations For Governor’s Awards, Board Positions PIERRE, S.D. – The South Dakota State Historical Society in Pierre is seeking nominations for the annual Governor’s Awards for History and two positions on its board of trustees. The Governor’s Awards include recognition for individuals, organizations and also a K-12 History Teacher of the Year. People interested in making a nomination should visit www.history.sd.gov or contact Jeff Mammenga with the State Historical Society at Jeff.Mammenga@ state.sd.us or 605-773-6000 to receive the nomination form. The nomination forms are due back to the society by Feb. 25. The nominations will be reviewed by a subcommittee of the society’s board of trustees and the winners will receive their awards during the society’s annual history conference on April 26 in Pierre. “We encourage people who know individuals, organizations or teachers who have excelled at preserving South Dakota history to nominate them for the awards,” said Jay D. Vogt, director of the State Historical Society. “Nominees need not be members of the State Historical Society.” Extraordinary individuals could be Home of Great Ideas since 1934 BroadcasterOnline.com PART-TIME POSITIONS AVAILABLE Evenings and weekends. Must have excellent people skills and be detail oriented. Retail experience preferred but not required. Flexible schedule and benefits available. Add’l $3.00 per hour for weekend hours. Apply in Person 3210 Broadway Ave. Yankton, SD 57078 Come Work with the Best! Drivers Wanted! Great Pay! 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