From USNA Virtual Memorial Hall

George Trever '09

Date of birth: June 11, 1885

Date of death: October 14, 1918

Age: 33

Lucky Bag

From the 1909 Lucky Bag:


From Pig Boats:

George Arthur Trever (11 June 1885 – 14 October 1918) was an officer in the United States Navy in the early 1900s.

Born in Waupun, Wisconsin, Trever was appointed to the Naval Academy in May 1905 and graduated on 4 June 1909. He spent the years prior to his commissioning in cruises in Pennsylvania (Armored Cruiser No. 4); Princeton (Gunboat No. 13); and Annapolis (Gunboat No. 10). Receiving the single gold stripe of an ensign while serving in Rowan (Torpedo Boat No. 8) on 5 June 1911, Trever assumed command of that vessel later that month. In September 1912, he was transferred to Farragut (Torpedo Boat No. 11); and he commanded her until early 1914, when detached to report on board Cheyenne (Monitor No. 10).

Following his tour in Cheyenne, newly promoted Lt. (j.g.) Trever was ordered to H-1 (Submarine No. 28), then attached to the Pacific Fleet. After a two-year tour of duty commanding H-1, he reported for duty at the Mare Island Navy Yard. In the spring of 1917, Trever reported to the Puget Sound Navy Yard, Bremerton, Washington, to supervise the building of N-1 (Submarine No. 53), then on the ways at the Seattle Construction and Drydock Company, Seattle, Washington. N-1 was commissioned on 26 September 1917 and operated put of Puget Sound until transferred to New York late in the year for patrol duties in the Atlantic.

In May 1918, Trever was ordered to the Fore River Shipbuilding Company, Quincy, Massachusetts, to assist in fitting out O-5 (Submarine No. 66). He assumed command of the new O-boat on 9 June 1918 and received the temporary rank of lieutenant commander on 1 July 1918.

On 5 October 1918, during post-commissioning trials, a battery explosion occurred on board O-5, in which Trever was injured and Lt.(jg) William Joseph Sharkey and EM/2c James L. Still were killed. Nine days later, at the naval hospital, Brooklyn, New York, on 14 October 1918, Lt. Comdr. George A. Trever died as a result of the severe and multiple injuries suffered in the shipboard tragedy.

Navy Cross

From Hall of Valor:

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Lieutenant Commander George Arthur Trever, United States Navy, for distinguished service in the line of his profession as Commanding Officer of the U.S.S. 0-5, operating against enemy submarines off the Atlantic coast of the United States during World War I.

Service: Navy
Division: U.S.S. O-5


USS Trever (DD 339) was named for George; the ship was sponsored by his widow, Bess.

Navy Directories & Officer Registers

The "Register of Commissioned and Warrant Officers of the United States Navy and Marine Corps" was published annually from 1815 through at least the 1970s; it provided rank, command or station, and occasionally billet until the beginning of World War II when command/station was no longer included. Scanned copies were reviewed and data entered from the mid-1840s through 1922, when more-frequent Navy Directories were available.

The Navy Directory was a publication that provided information on the command, billet, and rank of every active and retired naval officer. Single editions have been found online from January 1915 and March 1918, and then from three to six editions per year from 1923 through 1940; the final edition is from April 1941.

The entries in both series of documents are sometimes cryptic and confusing. They are often inconsistent, even within an edition, with the name of commands; this is especially true for aviation squadrons in the 1920s and early 1930s.

Alumni listed at the same command may or may not have had significant interactions; they could have shared a stateroom or workspace, stood many hours of watch together… or, especially at the larger commands, they might not have known each other at all. The information provides the opportunity to draw connections that are otherwise invisible, though, and gives a fuller view of the professional experiences of these alumni in Memorial Hall.

January 1910

Midshipman, Pennsylvania

January 1911

Midshipman, Pennsylvania

Others at this command:

January 1912

Ensign, Rowan

January 1913

Ensign, commanding officer, Farragut

January 1914

Ensign, commanding officer, Farragut

January 1915

Lieutenant (j.g.), USS Cheyenne

Others at this command:

January 1916

Lieutenant (j.g.), commanding officer, USS H-1

January 1917

Lieutenant (j.g.), Navy Yard, Mare Island, California

March 1918

Lieutenant, commanding officer, USS N-1

Memorial Hall Error

George is listed as a CDR in Memorial Hall, but he had only been temporarily promoted to LCDR two months before his loss. There is no evidence of a posthumous promotion, including in the history of his namesake ship.

Class of 1909

George is one of 10 members of the Class of 1909 on Virtual Memorial Hall.

The "category" links below lead to lists of related Honorees; use them to explore further the service and sacrifice of the alumni in Memorial Hall.