Domain of the Golden Dragon

by Sara Perrott May. 13, 2021 85 views

The Domain of the Golden Dragon is an unofficial award given by the US Navy to sailors crossing the International Date Line. The name comes from the act of sailing to the west towards the Asian countries. Those countries view the dragon as a powerful figure in their mythology.

My Grandfather received a card recognizing him for this achievement in February of 1945.

A picture of the card given to my Grandfather when he crossed the International Date Line aboard the U.S.S. Pickaway in 1945.

A picture of the card given to my Grandfather when he crossed the International Date Line aboard the U.S.S. Pickaway in 1945.

The text on the card reads:

Domain of the Golden Dragon
RULER OF THE 180th MERIDIAN
ALL SAILORS wherever ye may be and to all mermaids, flying (dra)gon(s), spirits of the deep, devil chasers and all other living creatures of the seas, GREETINGS: Know ye that on this 23 of Feb. 1945 in latitude 16-43N longitude 180° West (there appeared) within the limits of my august dwelling (on)board USS PICKAWAY (APA-222)
HEARKEN YE
(T)he said vessel, officers and crew have inspected and passed
LLOYD M. LARROWE
has been found sane and worthy of the Silent Mysteries of the East.

The picture on the card behind the writing appears to a dragon. I tried to fill in the text that was missing from samples online. The missing text is placed inline within the parentheses for ease of reading.

If anyone is curious, 16-43N is a range of coordinates, and the 180 W is a fixed number. The below map shows where these coordinates are at...the U.S.S. Pickaway would have sailed somewhere between the two points.

16-43°N, 180° W

16-43°N, 180° W

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