The Origin and History of:

and the Hoosier Sail & Power Squadron

What is USPS

Organized in 1914, USPS is a non profit, educational organization dedicated to making boating safer and more enjoyable by teaching classes in seamanship, navigation and related subjects. Our members are boating families who contribute to their communities by promoting safe boating through education. We enjoy participating with our fellow members on the water and in the classroom. USPS has some 45,000 members organized into 450 squadrons across the country and in some US territories. USPS is America's largest non-profit boating organization and has been honored by three US presidents for its civic contributions.

What are the activities of USPS

Each squadron's activities involve the three primary objectives of USPS: community service, continuing education, and enjoying the friendship and camaraderie of our fellow members

What community and civic services does USPS perform

Local squadrons offer boating safety courses on a regular basis to boaters in our communities. These courses are open to the public and there is no age limit for participants. USPS squadrons have offered these courses for over half a century and have educated more than 3 million boaters to date. Successfully completing a USPS boating safety course meets the educational requirements for boat operation in all states.

In a cooperative program with the US Coast Guard Auxiliary, squadron members conduct courtesy Vessel Safety Checks of boats at the request of their owners. To learn more about this program, and how to get your boat checked, click here .

Our members also help the National Ocean Service keep our nautical charts accurate by reporting chart corrections, and our local squadrons participate in many other community improvement projects.

What educational courses are available to USPS members

Every squadron offers many carefully planned courses in subjects like Seamanship, Piloting, Plotting and Position Finding, Celestial Navigation, Cruise Planning, Engine Maintenance, Marine Electronics, Sailing, and much more. These courses are taught by experienced member instructors, and members who complete them are recognized.

What social activities do members enjoy

Participating both on-the-water and off with fellow members who are skilled in boating is a rewarding and enjoyable experience. On-the-water activities include cruises, rendezvous, sail races, navigation contests and even fishing derbies. Activities ashore include meetings with marine programs, parties, dinner-dances, picnics and field trips.


The Hoosier Sail & Power Squadron - Early History

In January of 1952, a group of local area boating enthusiasts agreed to form a USPS Squadron.
This was done with the help of Ken Champ, from the Fostoria Squadron and then in line to become the next Chief Commander of U.S.P.S., who came to Indianapolis to address the group.


Ken outlined the procedure to be followed in the formation of a squadron as well as explaining the purposes and benefits of a squadron. The Fostoria Squadron, in northwestern Ohio, was asked to serve as the sponsor for the new group


In late January, Officers of the Fostoria Squadron conducted the first training classes in Indianapolis. By May, the new Hoosier Sail & Power Squadron was ready to launch with these 16 charter members:


W. Frank Parrish - Indianapolis
John M. Coulter - Frankfort
Harry E. Riddell - Indianapolis
Bradley Hall - Shelbyville
William D. Guyton - Indianapolis
Paul S. Johnson - Indianapolis
John Wyttenbach - Indianapolis
Thomas S. Hood - Indianapolis
John S. Kirby - Indianapolis
Willard C. Stamper - Indianapolis
Glenn Plymate - Shelbyville
Mayburn F. Landgraf - Indianapolis
Norman L. McCready - Indianapolis
James L. Mannix - Indianapolis
Edward E. McLaren - Indianapolis
James L. Wright - Indianapolis


Seven of the charter members became Commanders of Hoosier: Parrish, Kirby, Coulter, Riddell, Mannix, McCready, and Wyttenbach.


John S. Kirby became the first Commander of District 24 when it was formed in 1957. During his term as District Commander, new squadrons were formed in Terre Haute, Louisville, South Bend, Fort Wayne, Marion, Ohio and Bedford.


The Hoosier Sail & Power Squadron continues to be active in boating education and social events in the central Indiana area.


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