Ova Yonda Travel Centre & Hotel Reservation Network.
Topsail Towers
   Home | Festival Centre | Beach Centre | Media | Lodging FAQ
     Best Viewed with Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.x+ at 800 x 600 Resolution or Higher.
• Africa • Canada • Caribbean Isles • Central America • Eastern Europe • Eastern Nations • Mexico • Oceania •
South America • Western Europe • US Gulf Coast • US Northeast • US Northwest • US South Atlantic Coast • US Southwest •
• Home • Up
decorative horizontal rule - landscape scene
Lodging Centers
Africa Lodging
Canada Lodging
Caribbean Isles
Central America
Eastern Europe
Eastern Nations
Mexico Lodging
Oceania Lodging
South America
Western Europe
United States
Gulf Coast States Northeast Region
Northwest Region
South Atlantic Coast
Southwest Region
Help Documents
Advantage Rates
Currency Chart
Lodging FAQ
My Reservations
Search Centre
Time Zones
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Directory
Ova Yonda Home
Recreation Centre
Ova Yonda Archives
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Astral Data Centre
Beach Centre
Boating Centre
Fishing Centre
Festival Centre
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Golfing Centre
Ova Yonda Chat
Public Parks
Restaurant & Dining
Scuba Diving
Tourism Bureaus
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Area Histories
Business Centre
Community Centre
Military Info
News Centre
Reference Centre
Storm Center
Theological Centre
Weather Centre
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
About Ova Yonda
Help Centre
Site Map
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Missing Children
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Sign up for
Free Newsletter
Up
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Consumer Advocate
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Ova Yonda Travel Center Server Certificates verified and serviced by Direct NIC
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Spamhaus Block List
Exploits Block List
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
We are Rated "G" by ICRA
Safe Viewing for All Ages
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Advertise on Ova Yonda
Travel Centre Network

About our Ads

North Carolina
Barrier Islands
Topsail Island


Home
Beaches
Boating
Dining
Festivals
Fishing
Golfing
Lodging
Military
Music
Public Parks
Scuba Diving

The most recognizable pet brands in the world, including PetSafe®, Invisible Fence®, SportDOG®, and other bestselling brands like Premier® Pet Products, Drinkwell® Pet Fountains and Innotek® training products.

(c) 2014 Ova Yonda, Inc.

At Skis.com we work hard to make our site the most comprehensive and helpful skiing website on the Internet. The Ultimate Online Ski Shop.

Topsail Historical Site
Observation Towers

towerback.jpg (12408 bytes)    It's not exactly Home Of The Space Program, but Topsail Island and today's space transportation technology do have a relationship akin to "Birthplace Of...". The most visible evidence of that is a concrete slab that is the Jolly Roger Motel's patio and seven rectangular towers that haphazardly dot the island. The towers are actually precisely located for equipment to track and time the Terrier, Talos and ramjet missiles that were developed and test-launched here.

    The patio was the launch pad. It was 1946 and Topsail was an un-bridged island that the W.W.II military called "the sand spit." And the sand spit, for the US government, was the perfect place for a secret missile development and test site.

    Following W.W.II, Topsail Island was "seized" by the US government to develop a long-range defense missile for the Navy. It was only 50 years ago, but there were few residents on the remote island, hardly any development, not much to harm in case of explosion and, probably, very few noticed that the island had been "seized." Those few who did notice also noticed that the island was bridged for the first time to the mainland, electricity and fresh water became available. The routes that were being used, later became roads. On Topsail Island, "seized by the government" actually looked pretty good at the time.

Tower (front)     The government project was dubbed Operation Bumblebee after a needlepoint message regarding the aerodynamics of a bumblebee which shouldn't allow it to fly. "...But the bumblebee doesn't know this, so he goes ahead and flies anyway..." Somehow this applied to the impossibilities looming ahead for this mission.

    Toward the goal of a supersonic missile that would swiftly reach a target up to 20 miles away, the mission had to get the ramjet up to supersonic speeds and demonstrate that it developed thrust. The ramjet rocket that was developed is the basis of supersonic jet technology. Up to that time, the ramjet would light and burn, but the theory that it developed thrust was not proven. With instrumentation in the towers, it was proven that the ramjet could develop and maintain thrust. The 6"-diameter rocket, fashioned from the tailpipe of a Navy Thunderbolt airplane, was powered by a mixture of propylene oxide and the oxygen of the atmosphere scooped into the front end of the open pipe, compressed in the chamber by its own speed, and ignited. Voila! Thrust.

    During the two years of government use of Topsail Island, more than 200 experimental rockets were fired. The test launchings resulted in the ramjet rocket which was the foundation of the guided missile program, which advanced the technology of jet propulsion and, consequently, was a first step in the technology that propels our space program.

    In 1948, the 26-mile length of Topsail Island became an inadequate range for missile firings. It seems apparent, with the perspective of time, that the potential was exceeding the goals of Operation Bumblebee. The project was divided and transferred to other test sites that would eventually become NASA, including Cape Canaveral. The "sand spit," towers and assembly building were returned to land owners, and equipment was given to counties and towns.

Locate and Reserve Lodging near these Landmarks


Assembly Hall

    Missiles and More are celebrated at the Topsail Island Museum, located in the Assembly Building, 720 Channel Blvd., Topsail Beach. The museum is open from April to mid October. The hours are:

2-4pm Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday,
Closed Sunday & Wednesday.

From November to April visitation is by appointment only, including group tours,
arrangements can be made at the Topsail Chamber of Commerce,
numbers are listed below.

Topsail Chamber of Commerce

Toll Free: 800-626-2780
Business Office: 910-329-4446

Admission is free,
but donations to the museum are always appreciated.

    The museum features video oral histories, artifacts and exhibits from the colonial era to W.W.II. A new exhibit focuses on the Women Air Service Personnel (WASPS) who served at nearby Camp Davis (Holly Ridge, NC) during W.W.II.

Locate and Reserve Lodging near this Landmark

decorative horizontal rule

At American West Beef Company, we are committed to providing you the best possible experience, and we stand behind our products with our Steak Guarantee.


• Home • Up • About . . . • Area History • Business Centre • Military Info • News Centre • Reference Center • Satellite Photo • Theological Centre • US Northeast • Site Search • Beaufort • Hammocks Beach • Hampstead • Holly Ridge • Jacksonville • New Bern • NC Lighthouses • Onslow County • Surf City • Sneads Ferry • Scotts Hill • Swansboro • Topsail Beach • Wilmington • US History

Last Revised: November 21, 2008 03:13 PM.

Hotel rates displayed in our listings are for comparative purposes only, the actual rates change daily.
Please click on the "Get Rates" Button for the current rates on the lodging you are interested in.
horizontal line
Africa Lodging | Canada Lodging | Caribbean Isles | Central America | Eastern Nations
Western Europe | Eastern Europe | Mexico Lodging | Oceania Lodging | South America | FAQ
United States: South Atlantic Region | Southwest Region | Northwest Region | Northeast Region | Gulf Coast Region

horizontal line
Animated Flags used throughout the Ova Yonda Network are provided by 3D Flags.
horizontal line
Copyright (c) 2004/2014 Ova Yonda Travel Center and Hotel Reservation Network, All Rights Reserved.
Technology Managed by Sound Trax Technologies  |  Your Privacy  |  Site Map