A century ago, as American forces mobilized to Western Europe, Rear Admiral William Sims, president of the U.S. Naval War College, sailed to London becoming the first senior American commander on the European front. To enhance morale among the American Expeditionary Forces there, Sims formed the Anglo-American Baseball League. The game became so popular that, on July 4, 1918, British King George V (pictured) attended a ballgame between Army and Navy in London, signing a baseball for the winning Navy team.
Cmdr. David Kohnen, an associate professor of history at the Naval War College, in Newport, R.I., and director of its John B. Hattendorf Center for Maritime Historical Research, will explore how Sims used baseball to pioneer the Anglo-American relationship that defined U.S. Naval strategy during the 20th century, drawing on his upcoming book, "Two Kings and a Navy: U.S. Navy Admiral Ernest J. King, the Anglo-American Special Relationship, and the Fifty Years War at Sea, 1901-1946" (Naval Institute Press).