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ASK MR. KNOW-IT-ALL: Six star Seminole no longer sailing

on August 11, 2013 10:00 AM

Question: My father made a career in the Navy. One of the last ships I remember him being on was the USS Seminole. Do you know what happened to it? — M.U., Charles City, Iowa

Answer: There have been several USS Seminoles, but the one I suspect your dad was on was an AKA-104/LKA-104. It was an attack cargo ship named after Florida, Georgia and Oklahoma counties. An attack cargo ship is designed to carry military cargo and landing craft to bring supplies and troops to enemy shores.

The Seminole was built and launched in 1944 by the North Carolina Shipbuilding Company, out of Wilmington, N.C. During its active years, it served with distinction in World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. The Seminole received six battle stars for service in Korea and six campaign stars for service in Vietnam. In November 1977, it was sold for scrap.

Question: Sometime back in the 1950s there was a quiz show called “Haggis Baggis” on TV. Do you know how long it ran and any other particulars? — G.L., Naples, Fla.

Answer: “Haggis Baggis” aired on NBC from June 1958 to June 1959. Jack Linkletter — the son of Art Linkletter — hosted the primetime version while Fred Robbins and Dennis James hosted the daytime show. Two contestants participated, a champion and a contender. The object was to identify an image of a celebrity’s face. The blank face was made up of a grid of five rows and five columns. Each row had a category, and the columns were letters. The player must name something in the category starting with that letter to win a piece of the image. The winner chose between “haggis” (a luxury item) and “baggis” (a practical item) for the prize. Only three episodes survived, which you can find on YouTube.

Question: Can you give me any information on the following poem:

Life is mostly froth and bubble,

Two things stand like stone,

Kindness in another’s trouble,

Courage in your own.

Thanks. — B.W.

Answer: The passage is from the poem “Ye Wearie Wayfarer” by Adam Lindsay Gordon (1833-1870). He was a poet, an accomplished horseman, an adventurer and a very poor businessman. In his own eyes, he was a failure.

Gordon was born in the Azores — an island archipelago off Portugal; at age 20 he arrived in his new home, Australia. He obtained a position in the South Australian mounted police immediately, resigned two years later and took up horse-breaking. After the death of his mother he inherited a large sum of money, which he quickly squandered. On the morning of June 24, 1870, Gordon, sick, depressed and burdened with debt, walked into the brush near his home and shot himself. He was 36.

Gordon is the only Australian poet to have a bust of his likeness in Poets’ Corner at Westminster Abbey.

The stanza you quoted starts:

Question not, but live and labour

Till yon goal be won,

Helping every feeble neighbour,

Seeking help from none.

You can find the whole poem at alldown -authors/adam-lindsay -gordon/ye-wearie-way farer.htm.

Send your questions to Mr. Know-It-All at or c/o Universal Uclick, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.

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