Norfolk was the largest and most capable naval base when the Second Great Depression began. The ships that ported there belonged to the United States Navy, and while many followed Norfolk in supporting Virginia, they did not join Virginia. They were American warships, and only a very few swore to join any of the States that were essentially rebelling against the American government. They represented a legal grey area until the Convention of States reorganized the Federal government. Most would swear loyalty to the new Federal government after that, including all of the remaining fleet carriers. Those represented a fading strength in the decades that followed, though as small budgets forced more and more of them into retirement. Even the best of the State alliances could not afford to maintain a full fleet carrier in those days, and so they slowly disappeared from the oceans as the decades went by. That paved the way for the far smaller but more versatile navies of the various State alliances.