The first three are the only photos documented to be from Southport, NC. Forrest Sr. (Dad) was stationed at a naval anti-submarine base established at the end of Oak Island on land which is referred to as "Fort Caswell" because of its history as a fort dating back to the Civil War. The naval base was relatively small and was not used after WWII ended. Most of the boats operating out of the naval base were small by naval standards because they were converted from private yachts and carried only depth charges and small caliber guns. The boat Dad captained was probably less than fifty feet long. I (Forrest Jr.) was told that the boat originally had gold plated handles in the head. Although Dad's boat was on patrol quite a bit (typically three days at sea and two days in port for two years), it apparently did not drop depth charges but a few times. I was told that it was credited with one possible sinking because it recovered some debris from a submarine after one attack.
The commanding officer was Commander G. T. Campbell. He is mentioned the book "Fort Caswell In War and Peace" by Ethel Herring and Carolee Williams (1983, 1999). The first photograph below shows the three ranking officers at the base in early 1943, Campbell on the right, Lt. Commander S. B. Haskell on the left and Lt. F. T. Meiere (Dad) in the middle, behind the other two. The inscription on the back of the photo (shown) is in Dad's distinctive script.
We lived in Southport and Dad joined us when he could. Mail was addressed to PO Box 254, Southport, N.C. but I do not know the street address. I was told that we lived across the street from 'Mr. Keziah', who I conclude was William Barnum Keziah. Keziah Memorial Park is named after him. He was nice to Mom and the family has fond memories of him.
Inscription on the back was written by Mrs. Forrest T. Meiere, Sr. soon after the picture was taken. It reads:
Dr. Trimble from Emory University Visiting Southport, N.C. 1943
Myrtis & Billy Pate
Forrest Jr. in picture with him
Details about Dr. Trimble and the Pates are unknown. Emory University is in Atlanta, GA which is the home town of Forrest Traber Meiere, Sr. Forrest Jr. is Forrest Traber Meiere, Jr. only son of Forrest Traber Meiere, Sr. and Elizabeth Fields Meiere, born October 12, 1937.
The memorial plaque in the background is not easy to read. The only clear words are the capital letters near the bottom which say COLONIAL DAMES OF AMERICA
Inscription on the back was written by Forrest Meiere, Jr. after asking his mother, Elizabeth Meiere, what the picture was about. This probably occurred after 1980. Forrest Jr. guesses that the woman is Elizabeth Meiere and the boy in the stripped shirt nearest her is Forrest Jr. Nothing is known about the boat or its exact location in Southport.
I have one other picture which appears to be from Southport based on the fact that in the picture I appear to be the same age as the photo of me known to be taken in Southport. If so, the house in the picture is probably where we lived in Southport. It definitely is not the house we occupied in Charleston (before Southport) nor any of the grandparent's homes.
Ironically, I have an album of pictures from Charleston (Dad's posting in 1941 just before assignment to Southport) which is well documented with locations, street addresses and names. Apparently, after Pearl Harbor, life got more hectic and the pictures were not documented.