December 14 - Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History

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6 December 1875 - SS Deutschland, an iron passenger steamship of the Norddeutscher Lloyd line, wrecked


Deutschland was an iron passenger steamship of the Norddeutscher Lloyd line, built by Caird & Company of Greenock, Scotland in 1866.

History
Deutschland was built as an emigrant passenger ship. She entered service on 7 October 1866 and arrived at New York on her maiden voyage on 28 October.

Loss

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The wreck of the Deutschland

The Deutschland sailed from Bremerhaven on 4 December 1875, commanded by Captain Eduard Brickenstein, with 123 emigrants bound for New York via Southampton. Weather conditions were very bad with heavy snowstorms, and the ship had no clear idea of her position until, at 05:00 on 6 December, she ran aground in a blizzard on the Kentish Knock, a shoal 23 mi (37 km) off Harwich and 22 mi (35 km) from Margate, 3 mi (4.8 km) from the Kentish Knock lightvessel, and out of sight from shore. At the time she was 30 mi (48 km) from where Captain Brickenstein estimated she was.

Shortly before grounding, an attempt was made to go astern but this failed when the stress fractured the ship's propeller. Driven onto the sandbank, the vessel began to take on water and as the tide rose she failed to lift off the shoal as had been expected. When the sea began to break over her, and the wind rose to gale force, the order was given to abandon ship, causing some panic. One boat was launched, but was swamped, while a second boat, with the quartermaster, a sailor and a passenger aboard, went adrift and eventually reached shore on the Isle of Sheppey the next day with only the quartermaster left alive. The remaining boats were later washed away or destroyed by the stormy seas.

Distress rockets were seen on the morning of 6 December by the Sunk lightship, which tried through the day to attract the attention of passing shipping, without success. Later, rockets from that light vessel were seen by another, whose own rockets were seen at Harwich in the evening, though neither the nature nor location of the casualty were known. The paddle tug Liverpool was dispatched at daylight on 7 December, reaching the Deutschland via the sequence of light vessels, and embarked all 173 still alive on the wreck.

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Aftermath
Soon after the news of the disaster had broken, the wreck was raided by men from the nearby coastal towns, particularly Harwich and Ramsgate. An artist from the Illustrated London News produced an illustration of the scene which depicted the wreckers as resembling a flock of vultures. The Times also described the scene, saying that corpses had been ransacked, and their jewellery stolen.

While there were some far-fetched suggestions that the Deutschland had been deliberately wrecked, there were well-founded allegations of deliberate delay in coming to the ship's assistance, as well as some of negligence. The Times published a leader which said that the Deutschland's grounding had been known for 15 hours of the 30 hours it took for the tug Liverpool to come to her aid, and Captain Carrington, her master, was criticized for his slowness in acting.

The Board of Trade enquiry into the accident opened at Poplar, London, on 20 December. It was not usual to hold such an enquiry in the case of a foreign registered vessel being wrecked outside the three-mile limit, and it may have been done to respond to the criticisms which had been raised regarding the delay in coming to the ship's aid. Charles Butt QC, who had been briefed by the German government, stated that it was surprising that "a large steamer with upwards of 200 persons aboard should have lain on a dangerous sand close to the English coast for thirty hours before any assistance came to her".

The enquiry eventually exonerated everyone of any blame except Captain Brickenstein, who, it was decided, had "let his vessel get ahead in its reckoning" and "shown a very great want of care and judgement". Brickenstein asked the German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck for an official German investigation, but this was ruled out.

31 Stunden Hölle - Die letzte Fahrt der Deutschland [DOKU][HD]


Legacy
Among the victims of the shipwreck were five Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Hearts from Salzkotten, Westphalia, in the Kingdom of Prussia, who had been emigrating to the United States. This was both to escape the anti-Catholic Falk Laws and to answer the need for nursing care in the German population of St. Louis, Missouri. Their deaths inspired Jesuit poet Gerard Manley Hopkins to compose the poem The Wreck of the Deutschland. Four of the five Sisters were buried in St. Patrick's Cemetery in Leytonstone, London, (a fifth whose body was never found is recorded on the memorial) and their deaths are commemorated every year in a memorial service held on 6 December in Wheaton, Illinois, by the Franciscan Sisters of their religious congregation now headquartered there.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Deutschland_(1866)
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
6 December 1886 – Launch of Balclutha, also known as Star of Alaska, Pacific Queen, or Sailing Ship Balclutha, a steel-hulled full rigged ship


Balclutha, also known as Star of Alaska, Pacific Queen, or Sailing Ship Balclutha, is a steel-hulled full rigged ship that was built in 1886. She is the only square rigged ship left in the San Francisco Bay area and is representative of several different commercial ventures, including lumber, salmon, and grain. She is a U.S. National Historic Landmark and is currently preserved at the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park in San Francisco, California. She was added to the National Register of Historic Places on 7 November 1976.

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Balclutha at her mooring in San Francisco.

History
Balclutha was built in 1886 by Charles Connell and Company of Scotstoun in Glasgow, Scotland, for Robert McMillan, of Dumbarton, Scotland. Her namesake is said to be the eponymous town of Balclutha, New Zealand, but her name also refers to her first homeport, Glasgow, Scotland, which is a "City on the Clyde" - the meaning of her name derived from the Gaelic Baile Chluaidh. Designed as a general trader, Balclutha rounded Cape Horn 17 times in thirteen years.

During this period she carried cargoes such as wine, case oil, and coal from Europe and the East Coast of the United States to various ports in the Pacific. These included Chile for nitrate, Australia and New Zealand for wool, Burma for rice, San Francisco for grain, and the Pacific Northwest for timber.

In 1899 Balclutha transferred to the registry of Hawaii, and traded timber from the Pacific Northwest to Australia, returning to San Francisco with Australian coal.

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The ship sailed as the Star of Alaska between 1904 and 1930

In 1902 Balclutha was chartered to the Alaska Packers' Association (APA). After having struck a reef off of Sitkinak Island near Kodiak Island on 16 May 1904, she was renamed the Star of Alaska when bought by APA for merely $500. After extended repairs she joined the salmon fishing trade, sailing north from the San Francisco area to the Chignik Bay, Alaska, in April with supplies, fishermen, and cannery workers, and returned in September with a cargo of canned salmon.

For this trade she carried over 200 crew and passengers, as compared to the 26-man crew she carried as the Balclutha. In 1911 the poop deck was extended to the main mast to accommodate Italian and Scandinavian workers. This expansion is called the shelter deck. In the 'tween deck, bunks for Chinese workers were built. Her last voyage in this trade was in 1930, when she then was laid up after her return home.

In 1933, Star of Alaska was renamed Pacific Queen by her new owner Frank Kissinger. In this guise she appeared in the film Mutiny on the Bounty starring Clark Gable and Charles Laughton. She then eked out an existence as an exhibition ship, gradually deteriorating, and was for a while exhibited as a "pirate ship".

In 1954, Pacific Queen was acquired by the San Francisco Maritime Museum, which restored her and renamed her Balclutha and moored her at Pier 41 East. In 1985 she was designated a National Historic Landmark.

In 1988, she was moved to her present mooring at Hyde Street Pier of the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park. She is host to a monthly Chantey Sing in the shelter deck 8pm to midnight on the first Saturday of every month.

'Tween_Deck_Plan,_Section_1_of_5_-_Ship_BALCLUTHA,_2905_Hyde_Street_Pier,_San_Francisco,_San_F...png 'Tween_Deck_Plan,_Section_2_of_5_-_Ship_BALCLUTHA,_2905_Hyde_Street_Pier,_San_Francisco,_San_F...png 'Tween_Deck_Plan,_Section_3_of_5_-_Ship_BALCLUTHA,_2905_Hyde_Street_Pier,_San_Francisco,_San_F...png 'Tween_Deck_Plan,_Section_4_of_5_-_Ship_BALCLUTHA,_2905_Hyde_Street_Pier,_San_Francisco,_San_F...png 'Tween_Deck_Plan,_Section_5_of_5_-_Ship_BALCLUTHA,_2905_Hyde_Street_Pier,_San_Francisco,_San_F...png



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balclutha_(1886)
https://www.nps.gov/safr/learn/historyculture/balclutha-history.htm
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
6 December 1906 - SS Monarch, a passenger-package freighter built in 1890 that operated on the Great Lakes, wrecked


SS Monarch was a passenger-package freighter built in 1890 that operated on the Great Lakes. She was sunk off the shore of Isle Royale in Lake Superior in 1906 and the remains of her wreck and cargo are still on the lake bottom. The wreck was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1984.

MonarchSm.jpg

History
Monarch (Official Number 96843) was a wooden passenger-cargo ship built in 1890 in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada, by John Dyble for the Northwest Transportation Company. She was launched on June 27, 1890, the last ship built in Sarnia until World War II. The ship was 259 feet (78.9 meters) long, 35 feet (10.7 meters) in beam, and 15 feet (4.6 meters) in depth. She had a 900-hp (671-Kw) triple-expansion steam engine with two Scotch boilers, allowing her to attain 14 mph. The ship's hull was heavily reinforced with iron, and she was fitted with 65 cabins.

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Monarch was used to transport both passengers and packages on the Great Lakes throughout her career, primarily running between Sarnia, Thunder Bay, Ontario, and Duluth, Minnesota. In 1899, Northwest Transportation merged with another company to form the Northern Navigation Company, Ltd.

On December 6, 1906, the Monarch finished loading a cargo of wheat, oats, salmon, and general merchandise and departed Thunder Bay for Sarnia in a blinding snowstorm. For some reason, the ship headed off her planned course, and that night she ran at full speed into the palisade area on the north side of Blake Point on Isle Royale. The ship's engineer kept the engine engaged to maintain the ship's position on the shore, and John D. McCallum, brother of first mate Burt McCallum, carried a line to shore through the rough seas. The crew and passengers used the line to escape the wreck, and only one person perished. The survivors camped on Isle Royale for four days, salvaging food from the wreck and keeping signal fires alight, before they were rescued on December 10, 1906.

During the night of 11–12 December 1906, the wreck broke into two pieces, leaving only the bow section visible. Salvage operations on Monarch were carried out over the next two years, and the engine and associated machinery was salvaged in 1908.

The wreck today
The wooden wreck has disintegrated, although a number of pieces of wreckage can be seen. Large pieces of wooden wreckage are scattered on the bottom of Lake Superior at depths of 10 to 80 feet (3 to 24.4 meters), and there is a trove of Monarch′s cargo still lying on the bottom near the wreck. Approximately 85 dives were made on the wreck in 2009 out of 1,062 dives made to wrecks in the Isle Royale National Park.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Monarch
https://www.superiortrips.com/Monarch_Shipwreck.htm
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
6 December 1917 - The Halifax Explosion was a maritime disaster in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The Norwegian vessel SS Imo collided with SS Mont-Blanc, a French cargo ship laden with high explosives. A fire on board the French ship ignited her cargo, causing a large explosion that devastated the Richmond district of Halifax. Approximately 2,000 people were killed.


The Halifax Explosion was a maritime disaster in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, which happened on the morning of 6 December 1917. The Norwegian vessel SS Imo collided with SS Mont-Blanc, a French cargo ship laden with high explosives, in the Narrows, a strait connecting the upper Halifax Harbour to Bedford Basin. A fire on board the French ship ignited her cargo, causing a large explosion that devastated the Richmond district of Halifax. Approximately 2,000 people were killed by the blast, debris, fires or collapsed buildings, and an estimated 9,000 others were injured. The blast was the largest man-made explosion at the time, releasing the equivalent energy of roughly 2.9 kilotons of TNT (12,000 GJ).

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Mont-Blanc was under orders from the French government to carry her cargo of high explosives from New York City via Halifax to Bordeaux, France. At roughly 8:45 am, she collided at low speed, approximately one knot (1.2 mph or 1.9 km/h), with the unladen Imo, chartered by the Commission for Relief in Belgium to pick up a cargo of relief supplies in New York. The resulting fire on board the French ship quickly grew out of control. Approximately 20 minutes later at 9:04:35 am, the Mont-Blanc exploded.

Nearly all structures within an 800-metre (half-mile) radius, including the community of Richmond, were obliterated. A pressure wave snapped trees, bent iron rails, demolished buildings, grounded vessels (including Imo, which was washed ashore by the ensuing tsunami), and scattered fragments of Mont-Blanc for kilometres. Across the harbour, in Dartmouth, there was also widespread damage. A tsunami created by the blast wiped out the community of the Mi'kmaq First Nation who had lived in the Tufts Cove area for generations.

Relief efforts began almost immediately, and hospitals quickly became full. Rescue trains began arriving the day of the explosion from across Nova Scotia and New Brunswick while other trains from central Canada and the northeastern United States were impeded by blizzards. Construction of temporary shelters to house the many people left homeless began soon after the disaster. The initial judicial inquiry found Mont-Blanc to have been responsible for the disaster, but a later appeal determined that both vessels were to blame. There are several memorials to the victims of the explosion in the North End.

Disaster
The Norwegian ship SS Imo had sailed from the Netherlands en route to New York to take on relief supplies for Belgium, under the command of Haakon From. The ship arrived in Halifax on 3 December for neutral inspection and spent two days in Bedford Basin awaiting refuelling supplies. Though given clearance to leave the port on 5 December, Imo's departure was delayed because her coal load did not arrive until late that afternoon. The loading of fuel was not completed until after the anti-submarine nets had been raised for the night. Therefore, the vessel could not weigh anchor until the next morning.

The French cargo ship SS Mont-Blanc arrived from New York late on 5 December, under the command of Aimé Le Medec. The vessel was fully loaded with the explosives TNT and picric acid, the highly flammable fuel benzole, and guncotton. She intended to join a slow convoy gathering in Bedford Basin readying to depart for Europe but was too late to enter the harbour before the nets were raised. Ships carrying dangerous cargo were not allowed into the harbour before the war, but the risks posed by German submarines had resulted in a relaxation of regulations.

Navigating into or out of Bedford Basin required passage through a strait called the Narrows. Ships were expected to keep to the starboard (right) side of the channel as they passed oncoming traffic; in other words, vessels were required to pass port to port. Ships were restricted to a speed of 5 knots (9.3 km/h; 5.8 mph) within the harbour.

Collision and fire
Imo was granted clearance to leave Bedford Basin by signals from the guard ship HMCS Acadia at approximately 7:30 on the morning of 6 December, with Pilot William Hayes on board. The ship entered the Narrows well above the harbour's speed limit in an attempt to make up for the delay experienced in loading her coal. Imo met American tramp steamer SS Clara being piloted up the wrong (western) side of the harbour. The pilots agreed to pass starboard-to-starboard. Soon afterwards, Imo was forced to head even further towards the Dartmouth shore after passing the tugboat Stella Maris, which was travelling up the harbour to Bedford Basin near mid-channel. Horatio Brannen, the captain of Stella Maris, saw Imo approaching at excessive speed and ordered his ship closer to the western shore to avoid an accident.

Francis Mackey, an experienced harbour pilot, had boarded Mont-Blanc on the evening of 5 December 1917; he had asked about "special protections" such as a guard ship, given the Mont-Blanc's cargo, but no protections were put in place. Mont-Blancstarted moving at 7:30 am on 6 December and was the second ship to enter the harbour as the anti-submarine net between Georges Island and Pier 21 opened for the morning. Mont-Blanc headed towards Bedford Basin on the Dartmouth side of the harbour. Mackey kept his eye on the ferry traffic between Halifax and Dartmouth and other small boats in the area. He first spotted Imo when she was about 0.75 miles (1.21 km) away and became concerned as her path appeared to be heading towards his ship's starboard side, as if to cut him off his own course. Mackey gave a short blast of his ship's signal whistle to indicate that he had the right of way but was met with two short blasts from Imo, indicating that the approaching vessel would not yield its position. The captain ordered Mont-Blanc to halt her engines and angle slightly to starboard, closer to the Dartmouth side of the Narrows. He let out another single blast of his whistle, hoping the other vessel would likewise move to starboard but was again met with a double-blast in negation.

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SS Imo aground on the Dartmouth side of the harbour after the explosion

Sailors on nearby ships heard the series of signals and, realizing that a collision was imminent, gathered to watch as Imo bore down on Mont-Blanc. Both ships had cut their engines by this point, but their momentum carried them right on top of each other at slow speed. Unable to ground his ship for fear of a shock that would set off his explosive cargo, Mackey ordered Mont-Blanc to steer hard to port (starboard helm) and crossed the bow of Imo in a last-second bid to avoid a collision. The two ships were almost parallel to each other, when Imo suddenly sent out three signal blasts, indicating the ship was reversing its engines. The combination of the cargoless ship's height in the water and the transverse thrust of her right-hand propeller caused the ship's head to swing into Mont-Blanc. Imo's prow pushed into the No. 1 hold of Mont Blanc, on her starboard side.

The collision occurred at 8:45 am. The damage to Mont Blanc was not severe, but it toppled barrels that broke open and flooded the deck with benzol that quickly flowed into the hold. As Imo's engines kicked in, she quickly disengaged, which created sparks inside Mont-Blanc's hull. These ignited the vapours from the benzol. A fire started at the water line and travelled quickly up the side of the ship as the benzol spewed out from crushed drums on Mont-Blanc's decks. The fire quickly became uncontrollable. Surrounded by thick black smoke, and fearing she would explode almost immediately, the captain ordered the crew to abandon ship. A growing number of Halifax citizens gathered on the street or stood at the windows of their homes or businesses to watch the spectacular fire. The frantic crew of Mont-Blanc shouted from their two lifeboats to some of the other vessels that their ship was about to explode, but they could not be heard above the noise and confusion. As the lifeboats made their way across the harbour to the Dartmouth shore, the abandoned ship continued to drift and beached herself at Pier 6 near the foot of Richmond street.

Towing two scows at the time of the collision, Stella Maris responded immediately to the fire, anchoring the barges and steaming back towards Pier 6 to spray the burning ship with their fire hose. The tug's captain, Horatio H. Brannen, and his crew realized that the fire was too intense for their single hose and backed off from the burning Mont Blanc. They were approached by a whaler from HMS Highflyer and later a steam pinnace belonging to HMCS Niobe. Captain Brannen and Albert Mattison of Niobe agreed to secure a line to the French ship's stern so as to pull it away from the pier to avoid setting it on fire. The five-inch (127-millimetre) hawser initially produced was deemed too small and orders for a ten-inch (254-millimetre) hawser came down. It was at this point that the blast occurred.

Explosion

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A view across the devastation of Halifax two days after the explosion, looking toward the Dartmouth side of the harbour. Imo is visible aground on the far side of the harbour.

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At 9:04:35 am the out-of-control fire on board Mont-Blanc set off her highly explosive cargo. The ship was completely blown apart and a powerful blast wave radiated away from the explosion at more than 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) per second. Temperatures of 5,000 °C (9,000 °F) and pressures of thousands of atmospheres accompanied the moment of detonation at the centre of the explosion. White-hot shards of iron fell down upon Halifax and Dartmouth. Mont-Blanc's forward 90 mm gun, its barrel melted away, landed approximately 5.6 kilometres (3.5 mi) north of the explosion site near Albro Lake in Dartmouth, and the shank of her anchor, weighing half a ton, landed 3.2 kilometres (2.0 mi) south at Armdale.

A cloud of white smoke rose to over 3,600 metres (11,800 ft). The shock wave from the blast travelled through the earth at nearly 23 times the speed of sound and was felt as far away as Cape Breton (207 kilometres or 129 miles) and Prince Edward Island(180 kilometres or 110 miles). An area of over 160 hectares (400 acres) was completely destroyed by the explosion, and the harbour floor was momentarily exposed by the volume of water that was displaced. A tsunami was formed by water surging in to fill the void; it rose as high as 18 metres (60 ft) above the high-water mark on the Halifax side of the harbour. Imo was carried onto the shore at Dartmouth by the tsunami. The blast killed all but one on the whaler, everyone on the pinnace and 21 of the 26 men on Stella Maris; she ended up on the Dartmouth shore, severely damaged. The captain's son, First Mate Walter Brannen, who had been thrown into the hold by the blast, survived, as did four others. All but one of the Mont-Blanc crew members survived.

Over 1,600 people were killed instantly and 9,000 were injured, more than 300 of whom later died. Every building within a 2.6-kilometre (1.6 mi) radius, over 12,000 in total, was destroyed or badly damaged. Hundreds of people who had been watching the fire from their homes were blinded when the blast wave shattered the windows in front of them. Stoves and lamps overturned by the force of the blast sparked fires throughout Halifax, particularly in the North End, where entire city blocks were caught up in the inferno, trapping residents inside their houses. Firefighter Billy Wells, who was thrown away from the explosion and had his clothes torn from his body, described the devastation survivors faced: "The sight was awful, with people hanging out of windows dead. Some with their heads missing, and some thrown onto the overhead telegraph wires." He was the only member of the eight-man crew of the fire engine Patricia to survive.

Large brick and stone factories near Pier 6, such as the Acadia Sugar Refinery, disappeared into unrecognizable heaps of rubble, killing most of their workers. The Nova Scotia cotton mill located 1.5 km (0.93 mile) from the blast was destroyed by fire and the collapse of its concrete floors. The Royal Naval College of Canada building was badly damaged, and several cadets and instructors maimed. The Richmond Railway Yards and station were destroyed, killing 55 railway workers and destroying and damaging over 500 railway cars. The North Street Station, one of the busiest in Canada, was badly damaged.

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View from the waterfront looking west from the ruins of the Sugar Refinery across the obliterated Richmond District several days after the explosion. The remains of Pier 6, site of the explosion, are on the extreme right.

The death toll could have been worse had it not been for the self-sacrifice of an Intercolonial Railway dispatcher, Patrick Vincent (Vince) Coleman, operating at the railyard about 750 feet (230 m) from Pier 6, where the explosion occurred. He and his co-worker, William Lovett, learned of the dangerous cargo aboard the burning Mont-Blanc from a sailor and began to flee. Coleman remembered that an incoming passenger train from Saint John, New Brunswick, was due to arrive at the railyard within minutes. He returned to his post alone and continued to send out urgent telegraph messages to stop the train. Several variations of the message have been reported, among them this from the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic: "Hold up the train. Ammunition ship afire in harbor making for Pier 6 and will explode. Guess this will be my last message. Good-bye boys." Coleman's message was responsible for bringing all incoming trains around Halifax to a halt. It was heard by other stations all along the Intercolonial Railway, helping railway officials to respond immediately. Passenger Train No. 10, the overnight train from Saint John, is believed to have heeded the warning and stopped a safe distance from the blast at Rockingham, saving the lives of about 300 railway passengers. Coleman was killed at his post as the explosion ripped through the city. He was honoured with a Heritage Minute in the 1990s, inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame in 2004, and a new Halifax-Dartmouth Ferry was named for him in 2018.

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Aftermath in Halifax, the start of rescue efforts

Destruction and loss of life

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Explosion aftermath: Halifax's Exhibition Building. The final body from the explosion was found here in 1919.

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Explosion aftermath: St. Joseph's Convent, located on the southeast corner of Göttingen and Kaye streets

The exact number killed by the disaster is unknown. The Halifax Explosion Remembrance Book, an official database compiled in 2002 by the Nova Scotia Archives and Records Management, identified 1,950 victims. As many as 1,600 people died immediately in the blast, tsunami, and collapse of buildings. The last body, a caretaker killed at the Exhibition Grounds, was not recovered until the summer of 1919. An additional 9,000 were injured. 1,630 homes were destroyed in the explosion and fires, and another 12,000 damaged; roughly 6,000 people were left homeless and 25,000 had insufficient shelter. The city's industrial sector was in large part gone, with many workers among the casualties and the dockyard heavily damaged.


A mortuary committee chaired by Alderman R. B. Coldwell was quickly formed at Halifax City Hall on the morning of the disaster. The Chebucto Road School (now the Maritime Academy of Performing Arts) in Halifax's west end was chosen as a central morgue. A company of the Royal Canadian Engineers (RCE) repaired and converted the basement of the school to serve as a morgue and classrooms to serve as offices for the Halifax coroner. Trucks and wagons soon began to arrive with bodies. Coroner Arthur S. Barnstead took over from Coldwell as the morgue went into operation and implemented a system to carefully number and describe bodies; it was based on the system developed by his father, John Henry Barnstead, to identify Titanic victims in 1912.

Many of the wounds inflicted by the blast were permanently debilitating, such as those caused by flying glass or by the flash of the explosion. Thousands of people had stopped to watch the ship burning in the harbour, many from inside buildings, leaving them directly in the path of glass fragments from shattered windows. Roughly 5,900 eye injuries were reported, and 41 people lost their sight permanently.

An estimated c$35 million in damage resulted (c$578 million today). About $30 million in financial aid was raised from various sources, including $18 million from the federal government, over $4 million from the British government, and $750,000 from the state of Massachusetts



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halifax_Explosion
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
6 December 1917 – World War I: USS Jacob Jones is the first American destroyer to be sunk by enemy action when it is torpedoed by German submarine SM U-53.


USS Jacob Jones (Destroyer No. 61/DD-61) was a Tucker-class destroyer built for the United States Navy prior to the American entry into World War I. The ship was the first U.S. Navy vessel named in honor of Jacob Jones.

Jacob Jones was laid down by the New York Shipbuilding of Camden, New Jersey, in August 1914 and launched in May of the following year. The ship was a little more than 315 feet (96 m) in length, just over 30 feet (9.1 m) abeam, and had a standard displacement of 1,090 long tons (1,110 t). She was armed with four 4-inch (10 cm) guns and had eight 21 inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes. Jacob Jones was powered by a pair of steam turbines that propelled her at up to 30 knots (56 km/h).

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After her February 1916 commissioning, Jacob Jones conducted patrols off the New England coast. After the United States entered World War I in April 1917, Jacob Jones was sent overseas. Patrolling the Irish Sea out of Queenstown, Ireland, Jacob Jones rescued the survivors of several ships, picking up over 300 from the sunken Armed merchant cruiser Orama.

On 6 December, Jacob Jones was steaming independently from Brest, France, for Queenstown, when she was torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U-53 with the loss of 66 men, becoming the first United States destroyer sunk by enemy action. Jacob Jones sank in eight minutes without issuing a distress call; the German submarine commander, Kapitänleutnant Hans Rose, after taking two badly injured Jacob Jones crewmen aboard his submarine, radioed the U.S. base at Queenstown with the coordinates for the survivors. The Veterans of Foreign Wars post in Dedham, Massachusetts is named for the ship

Design and construction
Jacob Jones was authorized in 1913 as the fifth ship of the Tucker class which, like the related O'Brien class, was an improved version of the Cassin-class destroyers authorized in 1911. Construction of the vessel was awarded to New York Shipbuildingof Camden, New Jersey, which laid down her keel on 3 August 1914. Ten months later, on 29 May 1915, Jacob Jones was launched by sponsor Mrs. Jerome Parker Crittenden (née Paulina Cazenove Jones), a great-granddaughter of the ship's namesake, Commodore Jacob Jones (1768–1850), a U.S. Navy officer during the War of 1812. As built, Jacob Jones was 315 feet 3 inches (96.09 m) in length and 30 feet 6 inches (9.30 m) abeam and drew 9 feet 8 inches (2.95 m). The ship had a standard displacement of 1,060 long tons (1,080 t) and displaced 1,205 long tons (1,224 t) when fully loaded.

Jacob Jones had two Curtis steam turbines that drove her two screw propellers, and an additional steam turbine geared to one of the propeller shafts for cruising purposes. The power plant could generate 17,000 shaft horsepower (13,000 kW) and move the ship at speeds up to 30 knots (56 km/h).

Jacob Jones' main battery consisted of four 4-inch (102 mm)/50 Mark 9 guns, with each gun weighing in excess of 6,100 pounds (2,800 kg). The guns fired 33-pound (15 kg) armor-piercing projectiles at 2,900 feet per second (880 m/s). At an elevation of 20°, the guns had a range of 15,920 yards (14,560 m).

Jacob Jones was also equipped with eight 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes. The General Board of the United States Navy had called for two anti-aircraft guns for the Tucker-class ships, as well as provisions for laying up to 36 floating mines. From sources, it is unclear if these recommendations were followed for Jacob Jones or any of the other ships of the class.

United States Navy career
USS Jacob Jones was commissioned into the United States Navy on 10 February 1916 under the command of Lieutenant Commander William S. Pye. Following her commissioning, Jacob Jones conducted training exercises off the New England coast, and then entered the Philadelphia Navy Yard for repairs. On 3 Feb. 1917, the day the United States broke diplomatic relations with Germany, the ship nearly sank in the naval yard. Contemporary reports said it might have been an act of sabotage. Upon the United States' entry into World War I on 6 April 1917, Jacob Jones patrolled off the coast of Virginia. She sailed from Boston for Europe on 7 May with a group of destroyers that included Cassin,[8] and arrived at Queenstown, Ireland, on 17 May.

Jacob Jones' duties at Queenstown involved patrolling and escorting convoys in the Irish Sea and making occasional rescues of survivors of sunken ships. On 8 July, Valetta was torpedoed by German submarine U-87 some 120 nautical miles (220 km) west of Fastnet Rock; Jacob Jones arrived on the scene and picked up 44 survivors of the British steamship. While escorting British steamship Dafila two weeks later, lookouts on Jacob Jones sighted a periscope, but before the destroyer could make an attack on the submarine, U-45 torpedoed and sank the steamship. Jacob Jones was able to take on 26 of Dafila's 28-member crew after the ship went down.

On 19 October, the British Armed merchant cruiser Orama and ten destroyers, including Jacob Jones, were escorting an eastbound convoy of twenty steamers, when German submarine U-62 surfaced in the midst of the group. The submarine launched its only remaining torpedo at Orama, sinking that vessel. While sister ship Conyngham saw and depth charged U-62 (to no avail), Jacob Jones turned her attentions to rescuing Orama's survivors, gathering 309.

Sinking
In early December, Jacob Jones helped escort a convoy to Brest, France, with five other Queenstown-based destroyers. The last to depart from Brest on the return to Ireland, Jacob Jones was steaming alone in a zig-zag pattern when she was spotted by Kapitänleutnant Hans Rose on the German submarine U-53. At 16:20 on 6 December 1917, near position 49°23′N 6°13′WCoordinates:
49°23′N 6°13′W, lookouts on Jacob Jones spotted a torpedo 800 yards (730 m) distant headed for the ship's starboard side. Despite having her rudder put hard left and emergency speed rung up, Jacob Jones was unable to move out of the way, and the torpedo struck her rudder. Even though the depth charges did not explode, Jacob Jones was adrift. The jolt had knocked out power, so the destroyer was unable to send a distress signal; since she was steaming alone, no other ship was present to know of Jacob Jones' predicament.

Commander David W. Bagley, the destroyer's commander, ordered all life rafts and boats launched. As the ship sank, her bow raised in the air almost vertically before she began to slip beneath the waves. At this point the armed depth charges began to explode, killing men who had been unable to escape the destroyer, and stunning many others in the water. The destroyer, the first United States destroyer ever lost to enemy action, sank eight minutes after the torpedo struck the rudder, taking with her two officers and 64 men.

In the water, several of the crew — most notably Lieutenant, Junior Grade, Stanton F. Kalk, the officer-of-the-deck when the torpedo struck — began to get men out of the water and into the life rafts. Kalk worked in the cold Atlantic water to equalize the load among the various rafts, but died of exhaustion and exposure.

Bagley noted in his official account that about 30 minutes after Jacob Jones sank, the German submarine surfaced about two to three miles from the collection of rafts and took one of the American sailors on board. According to Uboat.net, what Rose of U-53 had done was surface and take aboard two badly injured American sailors. Rose had also radioed the American base at Queenstown with the approximate coordinates of the sinking before departing the area.

Bagley, unaware of Rose's humanitarian gesture, left most of the food, water, and medical supplies with Lieutenant Commander John K. Richards, whom he left in charge of the assembled rafts. Bagley, Lieutenant Commander Norman Scott (Jacob Jones' executive officer) and four crewmen (brought along to row), set out for aid in the nearby Isles of Scilly. At 13:00 on 7 December, Bagley's group was sighted by a British patrol vessel just six nautical miles (11 km) from their destination. The group was relieved to find that the British sloop HMS Camellia had found and taken aboard most of the survivors earlier that morning; a small group had been rescued on the night of the sinking by the American steamer Catalina.

Several men were recognized for their actions in the aftermath of the torpedo attack. Kalk (posthumously) and Bagley received the Navy Distinguished Service Medal. Others honored included Chief Boatswain's Mate Harry Gibson (posthumously) and Chief Electrician's Mate L. J. Kelly, who both received the Navy Cross; and Richards, Scott, and Chief Boatswain's Mate Charles Charlesworth all received letters of commendation. Rose was awarded the Pour le Mérite and Ritterkreuz des Hohenzollerschen Hausordens mit Schwertern for this and other achievements in the tonnage war.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Jacob_Jones_(DD-61)
 

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6 December 1939 - German passenger ship SS Ussukuma was scuttled to prevent capture off the coast of Argentina


The Ussukuma was a German passenger ship named after a location in the central highlands of German East Africa (now Tanzania). She had a crew of 107, could carry 264 passengers and was powered by steam turbine. Her building number was 389 and her home port was Hamburg. Her sister ships were the Usaramo of the Deutsche Ost-Afrika Linie and the Wangoni of the Woermann-Linie.

1280px-Ussukuma_1921_Deutsche_Ostafrikalinie.jpg

She was launched on 20 December 1920 at the Hamburg shipyard of Blohm + Voss and entered service with the Deutsche Ost-Afrika Linie on 8 July the following year. On 6 December 1939, only a few months into the Second World War, she was scuttled off the coast of Argentina. In January 2008 her wreck was identified by the Argentine Navy in 70 metres of water, 62 miles off Necochea.

History

She used 13 ports in Europe, 38 in Africa and 1 in Aden. Her last round trip to Africa began from Hamburg on 15 July 1939. On 19 August she left Cape Town and by 26 August had reached Lorenço Marques. On the outbreak of war on 1 September 1939 she was lying off Lorenço Marques and was taken over by the Abwehr for service in the South Atlantic. In late September she went to South America and on 11 October reached Bahía Blanca in Argentina, where she stayed until 4 December. Her captain Karl Schulte fell ill there and was replaced by Hugo Wilmsen from the Nienburg.


On 4 December 1939 the Ussukuma left Bahía Blanca in the direction of Montevideo in Uruguay, possibly to help the pocket battleship Graf Spee, also heading for Montevideo. On 5 December, towards evening, the Ussukuma met the British cruiser HMS Ajax. Ajax had been looking for the Graf Spee (later meeting her in the battle of the River Plate on 13 December) and had been informed of the departure of the Ussukuma by the British naval attaché in Montevideo and by a Dutch ship which had met the Ussukuma shortly after the latter's departure. The Ajax threatened not to rescue the German crew if they left their ship but also ordered them not to sink it. Captain Wilmsen decided to scuttle her nevertheless and the Ajax fired three rounds at her, the first across the bows, the second whilst she was lowering her lifeboats and the third when the boats were dropped into the water, 62 miles from the coast. The Ussukuma sank during the night of 5 December or morning of 6 December.

The 107 crew members were rescued by the Ajax and interned as enemy civilians. The cruiser HMS Cumberland took them first to the Falkland Islands, then in 1940 to Camp Baviaanspoort near Pretoria in South Africa, from which they were released at the end of the war.

The vessel's remains appeared on charts as an unnamed wreck for years and in January 2008 became "the first Nazi wreck to be identified in Argentine waters in decades.


HMS Ajax was a Leander-class light cruiser which served with the Royal Navy during World War II. She became famous for her part in the Battle of the River Plate, the Battle of Crete, the Battle of Malta and as a supply escort in the Siege of Tobruk. This ship was the eighth in the Royal Navy to bear the name. In February 1942, she was adopted by the civil community of Halifax.

cl_hms_ajax.jpg


Admiral Graf Spee was a Deutschland-class "Panzerschiff" (armored ship), nicknamed a "pocket battleship" by the British, which served with the Kriegsmarine of Nazi Germany during World War II. The two sister-ships of her class, Deutschland and Admiral Scheer, were reclassified as heavy cruisers in 1940. The vessel was named after Admiral Maximilian von Spee, commander of the East Asia Squadron that fought the battles of Coronel and the Falkland Islands, where he was killed in action, in World War I. She was laid down at the Reichsmarinewerft shipyard in Wilhelmshaven in October 1932 and completed by January 1936. The ship was nominally under the 10,000 long tons (10,000 t) limitation on warship size imposed by the Treaty of Versailles, though with a full load displacement of 16,020 long tons (16,280 t), she significantly exceeded it. Armed with six 28 cm (11 in) guns in two triple gun turrets, Admiral Graf Spee and her sisters were designed to outgun any cruiser fast enough to catch them. Their top speed of 28 knots (52 km/h; 32 mph) left only the few battlecruisers in the Anglo-French navies fast enough and powerful enough to sink them.

Bundesarchiv_DVM_10_Bild-23-63-06,_Panzerschiff__Admiral_Graf_Spee_.jpg

The ship conducted five non-intervention patrols during the Spanish Civil War in 1936–1938, and participated in the Coronation Review of King George VI in May 1937. Admiral Graf Spee was deployed to the South Atlantic in the weeks before the outbreak of World War II, to be positioned in merchant sea lanes once war was declared. Between September and December 1939, the ship sank nine ships totaling 50,089 gross register tons (GRT), before being confronted by three British cruisers at the Battle of the River Plate on 13 December. Admiral Graf Spee inflicted heavy damage on the British ships, but she too was damaged, and was forced to put into port at Montevideo. Convinced by false reports of superior British naval forces approaching his ship, Hans Langsdorff, the commander of the ship, ordered the vessel to be scuttled. The ship was partially broken up in situ, though part of the ship remains visible above the surface of the water.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Ussukuma
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Ajax_(22)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_cruiser_Admiral_Graf_Spee
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
6 December 1940 - German attacks on Nauru


The German attacks on Nauru refers to the two attacks on Nauru in December 1940. These attacks were conducted by auxiliary cruisers between 6 and 8 December and on 27 December. The raiders sank five Allied merchant ships and inflicted serious damage on Nauru's economically important phosphate-loading facilities. Despite the significance of the island to the Australian and New Zealand economies, Nauru was not defended and the German force did not suffer any losses.

The two attacks were the most effective operations conducted by German raiders in the Pacific Ocean during World War II. They disrupted supplies of phosphate to Australia, New Zealand and Japan, which reduced agricultural production in these countries. In response, Allied naval vessels were deployed to protect Nauru and nearby Ocean Island and escort shipping in the South Pacific. Small garrisons were also established to protect the two islands.

Wrecked_Cantilever_Nauru.jpg
Damaged phosphate cantilever loading equipment following the German bombardment of Nauru on 27 December 1940

Background
Nauru and nearby Ocean Island were important sources of phosphate for Australian and New Zealand fertilizer production and played an important role on both countries agriculture industries at the time of World War II. The Melbourne-based British Phosphate Commission (BPC) managed the extraction and export of phosphate from the islands and dominated all aspects of Nauruan life. During the year ending 30 June 1940, the BPC shipped almost a million tons of phosphate from Nauru and about half that amount from Ocean Island using its fleet of four vessels (Triadic, Triaster, Triona and Trienza) and chartered merchant ships.

As the islands have no harbours or anchorages, the phosphate ships were loaded by securing to deep moorings and embarking their cargo via cantilever jetties. During south-westerly wind periods—which are common from November to March—the ships had to stop loading and sail away from the island until conditions improved. It was common for these ships to be allowed to drift to save fuel, and there were often several vessels lying off Nauru.

Despite their importance to the Australian and New Zealand economies, Nauru and Ocean islands had been allocated a low priority for the limited military assets which were available to protect the Australia Station and both islands were undefended in December 1940. Strategic stockpiles of phosphate had been built up in Australia, however, to lessen the impact of an attack on the islands.

In late October 1940, the German raider Orion, which was commanded by Captain Kurt Weyher met Komet, which came under the command of Captain Robert Eyssen, and the supply ship Kulmerland at Lamotrek in the Caroline Islands. Eyssen was the more senior of the two captains, and assumed overall command of the force. The three ships operated off New Zealand's east coast for 18 days during November and sank the small coaster Holmwood and large ocean liner Rangitane with gunfire without being detected by the weak New Zealand defences on 25 and 27 November respectively. Following these attacks, the raiders proceeded to the Kermadec Islands where they transferred their women and children prisoners to Kulmerland on 29 November. The three ships then proceeded to Nauru to attack the island's phosphate industry and the concentration of shipping which the German captains knew was usually present.

Attacks on Nauru

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Movements of the three German ships in December 1940 and January 1941

The German force encountered its first BPC ship while en route to Nauru. On 6 December, Triona (4,413 long tons (4,484 t)) was attacked north-east of the Solomon Islands and was sunk with torpedoes after a chase in which three of her crew were killed by the raiders' guns. All 68 survivors were captured.

The raider captains intended to land a shore party and bombard Nauru's shore installations at dawn on 8 December, but bad weather forced them to concentrate on the ships which were off the island. On the evening of 7 December, Komet—which had gone ahead to reconnoitre and was disguised as the Japanese merchant ship Manyo Maru—sank the Norwegian merchant ship Vinni (5,181 long tons (5,264 t))[9] approximately 9 miles (14 km) south of Nauru. While the raider was spotted from the shore, her disguise was successful and she was assumed to be a merchant ship bound for Japan.

Orion joined Komet off Nauru in the early hours of 8 December, and attacked and damaged Triadic (6,378 long tons (6,480 t)) and sank Triaster (6,032 long tons (6,129 t)). Komet then tried to sink Triadic with scuttling charges, but this was unsuccessful and Orion sank the merchant ship with gunfire. Komet later sank the British steamer Komata (3,900 long tons (4,000 t)). Following these attacks, the two raiders and Kulmerland withdrew and assembled 20 mi (17 nmi; 32 km) east of Nauru. As the weather precluded a landing on the island, it was decided that Komet and Kulmerland would go to Ailinglaplap in the Marshall Islands, where Komet would refuel while Orion operated north-west of Nauru. Following this, the ships would meet off the island and make another attempt to land a raiding party.

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The German attacks on Nauru on 7–8 December and 27 December 1940.

When the German force reassembled off Nauru on 15 December, the weather continued to be too bad to permit a landing and the attack on Nauru was broken off. Further attacks on shipping were judged impractical, as the raiders had intercepted radio messages ordering vessels bound for Nauru and Ocean Island to disperse. Instead, the three German ships proceeded to the Australian-administered island of Emirau to disembark the 675 prisoners they were carrying. While Weyher refused to release any of the European ethnic prisoners on board Orion, as he believed that "trained officers and crews are as much a problem for Britain as shipping itself", the ships landed 343 Europeans and 171 Chinese and South Pacific-ethnic people.

Fortunately for the Germans, Emirau was one of the few islands in the region to not have a Royal Australian Navy-supplied radio to contact the Australian authorities. The two European families on the island provided the released prisoners with supplies, and sent a canoe to Kavieng in New Ireland to notify the Australian colonial government. A schooner was dispatched to bring additional supplies to Emirau, and arrived there on 24 December. The colonial administrator of New Britain and further supplies was also flown to Emirau on board a flying boat. The released prisoners were embarked onto the steamer Nellore on 29 December to be transported to Townsville in Queensland, where they arrived on 1 January 1941. They provided useful intelligence on the German raiders' operations, and the German Naval Staff issued a directive on 19 February 1941 prohibiting raiders from releasing further prisoners.

The three German ships parted company after leaving Emirau on 21 December. Orion proceeded to Lamutrik and then Maug in the Mariana Islands to overhaul her engines, Kulmerland went to Japan, and only Komet continued operations in the South Pacific. She attempted to lay mines off Rabaul on 24 December using her motor boat, but this project was abandoned when the boat's engines failed.

Komet returned to Nauru following the unsuccessful attempt to mine Rabaul, and arrived off the island at 05:45 on the morning of 27 December. After issuing a warning for those on shore to not use radio and signalling her intent to destroy the phosphate loading plant, she opened fire at 06:40. The bombardment lasted for about an hour, during which time the raider wrecked the loading plant, oil tanks, boats, buildings and mooring buoys. Following this attack, she sailed to the south-east and Nauru broadcast news of the attack to Australia. This was the last visit of German ships to Nauru during the war, and Komet transferred her activities to the Indian Ocean.

Aftermath

HMAS_Manoora_Nauru.jpg
HMAS Manoora off Nauru in January 1941

The German raids on Nauru affected the Australian and New Zealand economies and were the greatest success achieved by German raiders in the Pacific Ocean during World War II. It took ten weeks to resume phosphate shipments from Nauru, and the loss of ships and damaged infrastructure led to a significant decline in output. The resulting phosphate shortages forced the introduction of fertilizer rationing in New Zealand from July 1941. Komet's bombardment of the island also interfered with phosphate consignments to Japan, which caused the Japanese government to threaten to reduce the aid it was providing to Germany. The success of the attacks on Nauru led to rumours in Australia and New Zealand that the raiders had been aided by treachery in the islands. Several investigations were conducted into the rumours and proved them to be unfounded.

Following the raids, the Commonwealth military forces in the Pacific took steps to prevent further attacks by raiders. The Royal Australian Air Force and Royal New Zealand Air Force flew an increased number of patrols in search of raiders operating near major ports. In addition, the Australian Naval Board requested that the British Admiralty authorise the redeployment of Australian naval units to meet the threat posed by raiders. This was agreed to, and the light cruiser HMAS Sydney and armed merchant cruiser HMAS Kanimbla returned to Australia from other stations. This allowed naval protection to be provided to Nauru and Ocean islands, and the armed merchant cruiser HMAS Manoora arrived off Ocean Island on 4 January 1941 escorting Trienza. Several Australian and New Zealand warships maintained a continual presence off the islands during subsequent months, and two field guns were deployed to each island. The attacks also led to the introduction of convoys between Australia and New Zealand. The naval authorities were able to use the intelligence they gained from the prisoners landed at Emirau to re-route merchant ships away from the areas in which the German raiders were operating; this greatly reduced the effectiveness of the raiders, and Komet and Orion only sank three ships in the period between the attack on Nauru and their return to Europe in late 1941.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_attacks_on_Nauru
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
Other Events on 6 December


1782 – Launch of HMS Irresistible, a 74-gun third rate ship of the line

HMS Irresistible was a 74-gun third rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, launched on 6 December 1782 at Harwich.
Irresistible captured the French privateer Quatre frères in April 1797 in the Mediterranean. The Royal Navy took her into service as HMS Transfer.
Irresistible fought at the Battle of Groix in 1795, and at the Battle of Cape St Vincent in 1797 and captured two Spanish frigates at the Action of 26 April 1797.
Irresistible was broken up in 1806.

Albion_Fortitude_Irresistible_Grafton_Alcide.jpg
The body plan, sheer lines, and longitudinal half-breadth for Albion (1763) a 74-gun Third Rate, two-decker. The plan was later used for building Grafton (1771), Alcide (1779), Fortitude (1780), and Irresistable (1782).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Irresistible_(1782)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albion-class_ship_of_the_line_(1763)


1804 - HMS Morne Fortunee (1803 - 6), Lt. John Dale, wrecked on Atwood Cay (Samana Cay) to the NE of Crooked Island in the Bahamas.

HMS Morne Fortunee was possibly originally the Bermudian schooner Glory launched in 1801, but captured as the French privateer Morne Fortunée in 1803. She was wrecked in 1804.
The British Royal Navy purchased her at Bermuda in 1803. She arrived at Portsmouth on 29 November 1803 and was fitted there on 29 February 1804. Lieutenant John Dale commissioned her.

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Scale: 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines with inboard detail and figurehead, and longitudinal half-breadth for Morne Fortunee (purchased 1803), a purchased French privateer, prior to fitting as a 6-gun Armed Brig. Signed by Nicholas Diddams [Master Shipwright, Portsmouth Dockyard, 1803-1823].

On 19 March 1804 departed Spithead for Plymouth, Cork, and the West Indies, with a convoy of about 30 sail.
Circa 29 September 1804 she again departed Plymouth.
She was wrecked at Attwood's Key, off Crooked Island, Bahamas on 6 December 1804. She had been carrying dispatches from Jamaica when at 3a.m. breakers were sighted ahead. Although the helmsman put her helm over it was too late and she struck hard on a reef and started rapidly to take on water. Her crew cut away her masts, lightened her, and let go her anchors, all to keep her from slipping off into deeper water. In the morning the crew took to her boats as she was settling fast. The loss was blamed on a combination of an error in navigation and a strong current

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Morne_Fortunee_(1803)


1807 - British squadron captured Dutch vessels at Java, &c.

1861 - During the Civil War, the side-wheel steam cruiser USS Augusta, commanded by Cmdr. Enoch G. Parrott, captures British blockade runner Cheshire off South Carolina.

The second USS Augusta was a side-wheel steamer in the United States Navy during the American Civil War. She was named for the city of Augusta, Georgia.

USS_Augusta_(1853).jpg

Designed and constructed by the noted American shipbuilder, William H. Webb, the second Augusta was completed in 1853 at New York City and operated out of that port carrying passengers and freight for the New York and Savannah Steam Navigation Company on runs to Savannah, Georgia and New Orleans, Louisiana. Early in the Civil War, as the Union Navy was expanding its fleet for the Herculean task of blockading the Confederate coast, the Federal Government purchased the side-wheeler at New York on 1 August 1861. She was fitted out for naval service by the New York Navy Yard and commissioned there on 28 September 1861, Commander Enoch Greenleafe Parrott in command.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Augusta_(1853)


1862 – Launch of The first USS Nantucket was a Passaic-class coastal monitor

The first USS Nantucket was a Passaic-class coastal monitor in the United States Navy.
Nantucket was launched 6 December 1862 by Atlantic Iron Works, Boston, Massachusetts; and commissioned 26 February 1863, Commander Donald McNeil Fairfax in command.

Uss_Nantucket_1862.jpg

Assigned to the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron, Nantucket participated in the attack on Confederate forts in Charleston Harbor 7 April 1863. Struck 51 times during the valiant but unsuccessful assault on the vital Southern port, the single-turreted monitor was repaired at Port Royal but returned to Charleston to support Army operations on Morris Island, engaging Fort Wagner 16, 17, 18, and 24 July. She captured British steamer Jupiter at sea 15 September. She again challenged the Charleston Harbor forts 14 May 1864 and thereafter remained on blockade duty through the end of the American Civil War.
Decommissioned at Philadelphia Navy Yard 24 June 1865, she remained in ordinary there for a decade. Renamed Medusa 15 June 1869, she resumed the name Nantucket 10 August 1869. Transferred to Portsmouth Navy Yard in Kittery, Maine, in 1875, Nantucket twice briefly recommissioned 29 July to 12 December 1882 and 16 June to 6 October 1884, and operated along the northern east coast. She lay in ordinary at New York until turned over to the North Carolina Naval Militia in 1895. During the Spanish–American War, Nantucket was stationed at Port Royal, South Carolina.
After being condemned as unfit for further service, Nantucket was sold at auction in Washington, D.C. on 14 November 1900. A total of five bids were received for the vessel, with the winning bid of $13,111 lodged by Thomas Butler & Co. of Boston. The auction is said to have attracted considerable public interest, due to the vessel's historic nature.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Nantucket_(1862)


1882 – Launch of The second USS Puritan, a Puritan-class monitor in the United States Navy,

The second USS Puritan was a Puritan-class monitor in the United States Navy, constructed in 1882. She was the only ship in her class.

1280px-USS_Puritan_(BM-1).jpg

Construction
Further information: Amphitrite class monitor
On June 23, 1874 President Ulysses S. Grant's Secretary of the Navy George Robeson in response to the Virginius Incident ordered the USS Puritan of the American Civil War laid down (scrapped, redesigned, and rebuilt). Secretary Robeson revised design of the "repaired" Puritan called for two turrets, and with the ship's superstructure, tall stack, and military mast, having the characteristics which identified the monitors built between 1889 and 1903.

Because of the level of disrepair on the original Puritan, a new Puritan was built by John Roach & Sons of Chester, Pennsylvania contracted out by Secretary Robeson and completed by the New York Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York. Officially the Navyrecords list this action as a repair and redesignation of the original Puritan, not the building of a new vessel even though very few building materials from the original were included in the construction of the second. The new Puritan was launched 6 December 1882 and commissioned on 10 December 1896, with Captain John R. Bartlett in command.

By 1891, she had been equipped with four 12-inch (300 mm) guns in barbette turrets, with a plane of fire ten and a half feet (3.2 m) above the water. The armored belt was 5 feet 7 inches (1.70 m) deep, 14 inches (360 mm) thick amidships, with an armor deck of 2 inches (51 mm); barbettes, 14 inches (360 mm); and inclined turrets, 8 inches (200 mm). The original officer quarters were below deck, which were converted to additional crew quarters after new officers quarters were constructed in the superstructure.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Puritan_(BM-1)


1903 - SS Warrington, a passenger and cargo vessel, wrecked

SS Warrington was a passenger and cargo vessel built for the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway in 1886

Warrington-1886.jpg

The ship was built by Swan Hunter and launched on 9 June 1886 by Mrs. Hunter. She was built for the passenger a freight trade between Grimsby and Hamburg. She was the second of an order of two ships from Swan Hunter, the other being Northenden launched on 1 May 1886. The saloon furnishings were fitted with panels of Hungarian ash, the mouldings were of walnut, the stiles of oak with carved oak pilasters and Corinthian capitals. The mouldings throughout the saloon were of carved oak. She was despatched from the River Tyne on 24 July 1886.

In 1897 she was acquired by the Great Central Railway. On Saturday 6 December 1903 she ran aground and was lost on the sands near Happisburgh on the Norfolk Coast. The Board of Trade enquiry in January 1904 found that Captain G. H. Morris was guilty of a grave error of judgment in relying solely upon the lights of vessels as evidence of his position.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Warrington_(1886)
 

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7 December 1748 – Launch of HMS Unicorn, a 28 gun Lyme-class frigate


HMS Unicorn was a 28-gun Lyme-class sixth-rate frigate of the Royal Navy. She was originally ordered as a 24-gun ship to the draft of the French privateer Tyger. The third vessel of the Royal Navy to bear the name, Unicorn, as well as HMS Lymewhich was a near-sister, were the first true frigates built for the Royal Navy. They were actually completed with 28 guns including the four smaller weapons on the quarterdeck, but the latter were not included in the ship's official establishment until 22 September 1756. The two ships differed in detail, Unicorn having a beakhead bow, a unicorn figurehead , two-light quarter galleries and only five pairs of quarterdeck gunports, while Lyme had a round bow, a lion figurehead, three-light quarter galleries and six pairs of quarterdeck gunports.

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Scale: 1:48. A contemporary full hull model of the sixth-rate sloop 'Guadeloupe' (1763), 28 guns, built in the Georgian style. The model is decked and equipped. The unfinished appearance of the head and stern suggests that the model was built for design purposes but the measurements are correct for the frigate ‘Guadeloupe’ of 1763. The deck layout is typical of the early frigates. The raised forecastle shows the position of the foremast with bitts either side and the galley funnel and belfry at the break of the forecastle. Below, in the waist, are the riding bitts, the hatchways and by the mainmast position, the gallows bitts, freshwater and bilge pumps. The quarterdeck carries the main capstan and steering wheel. The mizzenmast was situated just abaft the wheel. Built at Plymouth Royal Dockyard, the ‘Guadeloupe’ measured 118 feet along the lower deck by 34 feet in the beam, displacing 586 tons burden. It was armed with twenty-four 9-pounders on the upper deck and four 3-pounders on the quarterdeck. The ‘Guadeloupe’ was one of the smallest class of 18th-century frigates. The first of the ‘true’ frigates of this class were actually the ‘Tartar’ and ‘Lowestoft’, built in 1756, but the ‘Unicorn’ and ‘Lyme’ of 1748 had been almost similar in design. The ‘Guadeloupe’ was sunk by American batteries near Yorktown in 1781. Frigates were fifth or sixth rate ships and thus not expected to lie in the line of battle. With the advantage of superior sailing qualities over the larger ships of the line, they were used with the fleet for such tasks as lookout or, in battle, as repeating ships to fly the admiral’s signals. They also cruised independently in search of privateers.

Class and type: Lyme-class frigate
Tons burthen: 581 50⁄94 (bm)
Length: 117 ft 10 in (35.9 m)
Beam: 33 ft 8 in (10.3 m)
Depth of hold: 10 ft 2 in (3.1 m)
Sail plan: Full-rigged ship
Complement: 160 (increased to 180 on 22 September 1756, and to 200 on 11 November 1756)
Armament:
  • Upper deck: 24 x 9-pounder guns
  • QD: 4 x 3-pounder guns
  • Fc: Nil
  • Also 12 Swivel guns

Unicorn was first commissioned in March 1749 under Captain Molyneaux Shuldham, under whose command she spent her first commission in the Mediterranean until returning home to pay off at Deptford in June 1752. After repairs, she was recommissioned in January 1753 under Captain Matthew Buckle, and sailed for the Mediterranean again in April 1753. In February 1756 command passed to Captain James Galbraith; in September Captain John Rawling replaced Galbraith.

Unicorn captured the French frigate Vestale on 8 January 1761. Vestale, under the command of M. Boisbertelot, had been part of a squadron of five ships that had left the Vilaine river for Brest under the cover of a heavy fog. When Unicorn encountered Vestale off the Penmarks a two-hour engagement ensued until Vestale struck. Hunt received a wound at the third broadside and died of his injuries an hour after the action ended. The British had five killed and ten wounded, the majority of them dangerously. The French had many killed and wounded, among them Captain Boisbertelot, who lost a leg and died of his wounds the next day. Lieutenant John Symons, who took command of Unicorn on Hunt's death, described Vestal as having twenty-six 12 and 9-pounder guns on her lower deck, and four 6-pounders on her quarterdeck; she also had a crew of 220 men. The Royal Navy took Vestale into service as HMS Flora.

The next day a French frigate approached Unicorn, but then sailed away. The day after that Unicorn came upon Seahorse engaging the same French frigate. Although Unicorn chased the French vessel, which later turned out to be L'Aigrette, she escaped. Unicorn was hampered in her sailing by the damage to her masts and rigging from the battle with Vestale.

Fate
After active and continuous service during the Seven Years' War, Unicorn finally paid off in late 1763, and was broken up in 1771.


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Scale: 1:48. A plan showing the body plan with stern board and decoration, sheer lines with inboard detail and figurehead and decoration, and longitudinal half-breadth for 'Lyme' (1748), a 28-gun Sixth Rate Frigate based on the lines of 'Tigre' [Tiger], a captured French Privateer. Reverse: A plan showing the upper deck for 'Lyme' (1748), a 28-gun Sixth Rate Frigate.

The Lyme class were a class of two 24-gun sixth-rate frigates of the Royal Navy. They served during the War of the Austrian Succession and the Seven Years' War.

They were built to the draught of a French privateer named Le Tygre, which had been captured earlier in 1747. They were initially rated as 24-gun ships, in spite of having four 3-pdr guns mounted on the quarterdeck, as well as the twenty-four 9-pdr guns forming their primary battery on the upper deck. However, in 1756 they were re-classed as 28-gun ships. They are normally seen as the first true sailing frigates to be built for the Royal Navy.

Ships in class
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Scale 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines with inboard detail and longitudinal half breadth for building Lowestoff (1756) and Tartar (1756), both 28-gun, Sixth Rate Frigates. Note the French influence on the designs bow shape, single bitts, and wheel abaft mizzen. Top right: "A Copy of this Draught was given to Mr Graves of Lime house for Building a 28-guns, p. 13th June 1755. Do to Mr Randell....of Rotherhithe."

The Lowestoffe class were a class of two 28-gun sixth-rate frigates of the Royal Navy. They served during the Seven Years' War, with HMS Tartar surviving to see action in the American War of Independence and the French Revolutionary Wars.

They were designed by Sir Thomas Slade, based on the prototype 28-gun frigate Lyme (launched in 1748), "with such alterations as may tend to the better stowing of men and carrying for guns". These alterations involved raising the headroom between decks. They were originally ordered as 24-gun ships with 160 men, but re-rated while under construction to 28 guns with the addition of 3-pounder guns on the quarterdeck and with their complement being raised to 180 men.

Class and type: Lowestoffe-class sixth-rate frigate
Type: 28-gun sixth-rate frigate
Tons burthen: 583 13/94 bm
Length:
  • 117 ft 10 in (35.9 m) (overall)
  • 96 ft 8.5 in (29.5 m) (keel)
Beam: 33 ft 8 in (10.3 m)
Depth of hold: 10 ft 2 in (3.10 m)
Sail plan: Full rigged ship
Complement: 180 (raised to 200 on 11 November 1756)
Armament:
  • 28 guns:
  • Upperdeck: 24 × 9-pounder guns
  • Quarterdeck: 4 × 3-pounder guns (6-pdrs after 1780)
  • + 4 × 18-pounder carronades (after August 1779)
  • Forecastle: 2 × 18-pounder carronades (after 1779)
  • 12 × swivel guns (after 1756)
Ships in class
  • HMS Lowestoffe
    • Ordered: 20 May 1755
    • Builder: John Greaves, Limehouse.
    • Laid Down: June 1755
    • Launched: 17 May 1756
    • Completed: 8 June 1756 at Deptford Dockyard.
    • Fate: Wrecked at Pointe-aux-Trembles, Canada on 19 May 1760.
  • HMS Tartar
    • Ordered: 12 June 1755
    • Builder: John Randall, Rotherhithe.
    • Laid Down: 4 July 1755
    • Launched: 3 April 1756
    • Completed: 2 May 1756 at Deptford Dockyard.
    • Fate: Wrecked at Puerto Plata, then burnt there 1 April 1797.

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Scale 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines with inboard detail, longitudinal half breadth for Coventry (1757), Lizard (1757),Liverpool (1757), Maidstone (1758), Acteon (1757), Shannon (1757), Levant (1757), Coberus (1757), Griffin (1757), Hussar (1757), all 28-gun, Sixth Rate Frigates, based on the plan for Lowestoft (1756) and Tartar (1756, which were the same as Unicorn (1748) and Lyme (1748). Maidstone (1758), Cerberus (1757), Griffin (1757), Acteon (1757), Shannon (1757),Bureas (1757) and Trent (1757) had the House holes moved to the upper deck. There are construction amendments for the first built Frigates. Annoted in the top right: " Body, same as the Lestaff and Tartar, except one havng a Beakhead and the other a round bow, withou the least alteration below the surface of the water - and the Tartar and Leostaff are exactly the same Body as the Unicorn and Lime. "

The Coventry-class frigates were 28-gun sixth rate frigates of the Royal Navy, principally in service during the Seven Years' War and the American Revolutionary War. They were designed in 1756 by Britain's Surveyor of the Navy, Sir Thomas Slade, and were largely modeled on HMS Tartar, which was regarded as an exemplar among small frigates due to its speed and maneuverability. The 1750s were a period of considerable experimentation in ship design, and Slade authorized individual builders to make "such alterations withinboard as may be judged necessary" in final construction.

A total of twelve Coventry-class frigates were built in oak during the Seven Years' War. Eleven of these were ordered from private shipyards and built over the relatively short period of three years; the twelfth was completed following the close of the War in a royal dockyard after its original contractor became bankrupt.

A variant was designed for building with fir hulls rather than oak; five vessels were built to this design, all in Royal Dockyards. these five vessels differed in external appearance to the oak-built frigates, as they had a square tuck stern. The use of fir instead of oak increased the speed of construction but reduced the frigate's durability over time.

More than a quarter-century after the design was produced, two further oak-built ships to this design were ordered to be built by contract in October 1782. One of these was cancelled a year later, when the builder became bankrupt.

Class and type: Coventry-class sixth-rate frigate
Tons burthen: 587 30⁄94 bm
Length:
  • 118 ft 5 1⁄2 in (36.1 m) (gundeck)
  • 97 ft 5 in (29.7 m) (keel)
Beam: 33 ft 8 in (10.3 m)
Depth of hold: 10 ft 6 in (3.20 m)
Sail plan: Full-rigged ship
Complement: 200
Armament:
  • Upper deck: 24 × 9-pounder guns
  • QD: 4 × 3-pounder guns
  • 12 × 1⁄2-pounder swivel guns
Coventry class 28-gun sixth rates 1757-85; designed by Thomas Slade based on the Tartar of Lowestoffe class above, so a further modification of the Lyme class.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Unicorn_(1748)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lyme-class_frigate
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lowestoffe-class_frigate
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coventry-class_frigate
 
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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1798 - HMS Perdrix (1784 - 22) captured Armee d'Italie (1798 - 18).


Perdrix was a corvette of the French Royal Navy, launched in 1784. The British captured her off Antigua in 1795 and she served briefly in the Royal Navy in the West Indies, where she captured a French privateer, before being broken up in 1798.

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lines & profile NMM, Progress Book, volume 5, folio 753, states that 'Perdrix' (1795) arrived at Deptford Dockyard on 22 July 1799 and docked on 1 August to have her copper removed. The ship was then taken to pieces on 10 September 1799.

Class and type: Fauvette-class corvette
Displacement: 752 tons (French)
Tons burthen: 516 31⁄94 (bm)
Length: 118 ft 5 1⁄2 in (36.1 m) (overall); 98 ft 7 3⁄8 in (30.1 m) (keel)
Beam: 31 ft 4 1⁄2 in (9.6 m)
Draught: 12 ft 0 in (3.7 m) (unladen);12 ft 6 in (3.8 m) (laden)
Depth of hold: 9 ft 0 in (2.7 m)
Complement:
  • French service:160
  • British service:155
Armament:
  • French service: 20 x 6-pounder guns + 2 x 36-pounder obusiers
  • British service: 24 guns

French service and capture
In April 1786 Perdrix was holed by a rock when she arrived at Tobago. She was refloated and repaired there between April and July.

Between 14 February and 2 May 1791, Perdrix was under the command of Lieutenant de vaisseaux Duval-Paris. He sailed her from Brest to Cadiz, and then on to Martinique and Cap-Français, carrying payroll. In December 1792 she sailed to the assistance of the frigate Didon, which had foundered before Pointe-à-Pitre. From there Perdrix returned to Fort-Royal. She then sailed back to France, sailing from Rochefort to Brest, via La Corogne. On 4 December 1792 sous-lieutenant de vaisseauxKrohm took command, with Duval-Paris being promoted to capitaine de vaisseau the next day.

Perdrix cruised to the south of Belle Île, then was at Rochefort, before cruising along the coasts of la Vendée. Next she sailed from Rochefort to Mindin (Opposite to Saint-Nazaire). Lastly, she sailed on a mission to Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon. During this period she had several commanders. From 26 February to 24 April 1793 her commander was capitaine de vaisseau Renaudin. His successor was enseigne de vaisseau non entretenu Garreau (temporarily until 20 May 1793), and nominally between 26 February and 22 July, lieutenant de vaisseau Barré, though Barré may not have assumed command until 14 May.

Barré, who continued in command until 28 November 1794, sailed Perdrix from Paimbœuf to Nova Scotia and then to New York. He was on the United States station, where he convoyed vessels from Sandy Hook to Cape Henlopen and into the Atlantic. In June 1794, Perdrix was perhaps temporarily under the command of Lieutenant de vaiseaux Le Bouteiller.

Rear-Admiral Thompson, in Vanguard, returned to Martinique on 13 June 1795, after seeing a convoy in safety to 24 Deg. 8 Min North. On his way back, on 5 June he captured Perdrix, a "French Ship of War of 24 Guns." She was under the command of Lieutenant de vaisseau Le Bouteiller.

British service
The British commissioned Perdrix on 2 February 1796 under the command of Captain William Charles Fahie. At some point between 18 March 1797 and 30 May, Perdrix recaptured the sloop General, H. Bloombury, Master, from Barbados. She had been sailing to Martinique with a cargo of dry goods and provisions. Perdrix recaptured her off Guadaloupe and sent her to Fort Royal, Martinique.

On 13 January 1798, while Fahie was on leave to take temporary command of the fleet, then anchored before St. Kitts, Lieutenant Charles Peterson was in command of Perdrix. She and Favourite, which was under the command of Thomas Pitt, Lieutenant Lord Camelford, were both in English Harbour, Antigua undergoing refit. A dispute arose between the two lieutenants over who was senior and so in charge of the port and both vessels. In the dispute, Camelford shot and killed Peterson for mutiny. What triggered the dispute was the departure from the harbour on the previous day of HMS Babet, whose captain, Jemmet Mainwaring, had previously been the senior officer in the port. Peterson had been first lieutenant under Camelford for three months when Camelford had taken over Favourite, even though Peterson was senior on the lieutenants list and represented Captain Fahie. The two ships' companies almost fired on each other when Camelford shot Petersen. Captain Henry Mitford of Matilda arrived that evening and put Camelford under arrest. Mitford put Lieutenant Parsons of Favourite in command of Perdrix and sent her out to sea. The subsequent court martial acquitted Camelford.

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The Perdrix capturing the Agreeable French Frigate, in the West Indies. Decr 26th 1798 (PAD5618)

Perdrix engaged in one major action when on 12 December 1798 (some docs define the 7th) she took L'Armée d' Italie, a privateer of fourteen 9-pounder and four 12-pounder guns. A few days earlier Perdrix had encountered an American vessel leeward of St Thomas, which had reported being boarded by a French privateer seven leagues east of Virgin Gorda. The wind and weather were such that it took four days before Fahie could get Perdrix to the area and find his quarry.

After a chase of 16 hours and an action of 42 minutes, the privateer was an unmanageable wreck. Of her crew of 117 men under the command of Citizen Colachyshe had lost six dead and five wounded; Perdrix had only one man wounded, and some damage to her sails and rigging. L'Armee d' Italie was 11 days out of Guadeloupe and had captured the brig Bittern and the schooner Concorde, out of Martinique. (Some members of their crews were aboard L'Armee d' Italie when Perdrix captured her. Perdrix then took her into Tortola, where she was condemned a week later.

At some point Perdrix captured Remt Folkerus.

Fate
Perdrix arrived at Deptford on 22 July 1799. She was broken up less than two months later, on 10 September.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_corvette_Perdrix_(1784)
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1798 - HMS Colossus (1787 - 74), Cptn George Murray, drifted onto a shelf of rocks known as Southern Wells near the island of Sampson, Scilly Isles, after her cables parted in a gale.


HMS Colossus was a 74-gun third-rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy. She was launched at Gravesend on 4 April 1787[1] and lost on 10 December 1798.

Early history
On 6 June 1793, in the Bay of Biscay, she captured Vanneau, a tiny vessel with an armament of just six guns, which the Royal Navy took into service.[2] The same year, Colossus was part of a large fleet of 51 warships of numerous types, including a Spanish squadron, but commanded overall by Vice Admiral Samuel Hood, 1st Viscount Hood.

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Scale 1:48. Plan showing the body plan with stern board outline, sheer lines with inboard detail, and longitudinal half-breadth for 'Colossus' (1787), a 74-gun Third Rate, two-decker, as built by contract at Gravesend by William Cleverley.

Class and type: Courageux-class ship of the line
Tons burthen: 1703 bm
Length: 172 ft 3 in (52.50 m) (gundeck)
Beam: 47 ft 9 in (14.55 m)
Depth of hold: 20 ft 9 1⁄2 in (6.3 m)
Sail plan: Full rigged ship
Armament:
  • 74 guns:
  • Gundeck: 28 × 32 pdrs
  • Upper gundeck: 28 × 18 pdrs
  • Quarterdeck: 14 × 9 pdrs
  • Forecastle: 4 × 9 pdrs

Siege of Toulon
The Fleet arrived off Toulon on 26 August 1793, with Lord Hood in the warship HMS Victory. The objective was to keep the French Fleet in check. In Toulon's port were 58 French warships, and Lord Hood was determined not to allow such a potent and dangerous fleet to be taken over by French revolutionary forces. The Bourbons, the Royalists of France, had managed to retain control of Toulon, a vital Mediterranean port. Upon the arrival of the British Fleet, the Bourbons duly surrendered the town and ships to Hood.

Sailors and Royal Marines began to land at Toulon from the ships of the Royal Navy Fleet, with the objective of taking possession of the key forts, which they succeeded in doing. The French Republican forces quickly mobilised, and began the siege of Toulon on 7 September. By 15 December, the British and Spanish withdrew, taking with them 15,000 Royalists, as well as destroying the dockyards and a large number of French warships. The Royal Navy lost 10 ships after the French captured the heights overlooking the harbour.

In 1795, Colossus was once again part of a large fleet action, the Battle of Groix. A fleet of 25 ships commanded by Admiral Lord Bridport on his flagship, Royal George, fought a French fleet of 23 warships under the command of Rear-Admiral Villaret-Joyeuse. The battle was immense and chaotic, and raged across a vast area, yet it came to an indecisive end, when Bridport ordered his Fleet to cease fighting at 7.15am, just four hours after the initial fighting had started. This decision allowed nine important French warships to escape. Colossus received damage, suffering three killed and thirty wounded. In total, British losses were 31 killed and 113 wounded. French losses are not known; it is estimated over 670 French sailors were killed or wounded, during skirmishes that resulted in the capture of three French warships.

Though Colossus was involved in much bitter fighting, her Scots captain, John Monkton, ordered his kilt-wearing piper to proceed to the maintop mast staysail netting and play the pipes throughout the battle, no doubt to the bemusement of the French sailors who witnessed it.

Battle of Cape St. Vincent
In February 1797, Colossus (now commanded by Captain George Murray) was involved in yet another large-scale clash of fleets in the Battle of Cape St. Vincent. She was part of a 21-ship strong fleet (including 7 smaller craft) under the command of Admiral John Jervis in his flagship HMS Victory, against a Spanish Fleet of 27 ships commanded by Lieutenant-General Don José de Córdoba y Ramos.[3] Colossus sustained serious damage, her sails being virtually shot away. It looked inevitable that she would be raked by Spanish warships, until Orion headed for Colossus and covered her.

The battle was a major victory for the Royal Navy. Despite being outnumbered, it captured four Spanish ships and crippled seven, including the largest warship afloat at that time - the Santísima Trinidad. Britain lost approximately 300 killed or wounded; the Spanish lost 1,092 killed or wounded, and 2,300 taken prisoner.

Other action
As the fleet repaired at Naples Colossus was immediately sent "on a cruise off Malta". She then went to Gibraltar before returning to the now repaired fleet in Naples. In the summer, William Bolton (later Captain) was promoted to Lieutenant on the Colossus, and the ship on the obverse of the 1797 medal featuring William Bolton may represent Colossus. Colossus was not cannibalized; Captain Murray did, however, hand over to Nelson three of his guns and one bower anchor. This was done as Colossus had been ordered home to England, whereas the Vanguard was staying within the war zone. Loaded with Greek vases and wounded men from the battle of the Nile, Colossus set off for home. She stopped of at Algiers and at Lisbon on the way. At Lisbon she joined a larger convoy that was "bound for Ireland and other northern ports". The convoy dispersed in the English Channel as planned.

Shipwreck
Amidst the bad winter weather Colossus sighted the Isles of Scilly first and came to anchor in St Mary's Roads on 7 December. For three days she intended to ride out the storm, only for it to increase. On the night of 10 December an anchor cable parted and the ship ran aground on a submerged ledge of rock off Samson Island. Only one life was lost, that of Quartermaster Richard King who drowned when he fell overboard while trying to sound the lead. Boats were immediately put out from the island, and all of the other crew were transported to safety by the morning. On 11 December the ship settled on her side, the starboard beam ends touching the waves. Attempts to reboard her were thwarted by continued high seas.

On 15 December Colossus' mainmast and bowsprit broke away and it became clear she could no longer be refloated. A naval brig, Fearless, was able to put alongside the shipwrecked vessel on 29 December and bring away a quantity of stores and the body of Admiral Molyneux Shuldam which had been transported aboard Colossus for reburial in England. No further salvage proved possible and the vessel sank entirely in early January 1799.

Modern discovery and protection
In the closing years of the 1960s, Roland Morris, a marine salver, began diving on the site, searching for the antiquities that Colossus had been transporting. In 1974, he discovered Colossus, as well as fragments from the collection of Sir William Hamilton which Colossus had been transporting. Many of the items found were reconstructed and are now displayed at the British Museum in London.

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Stern figure from Colossus in Tresco Abbey Gardens

In 2000, a report from amateur diver Todd Stevens alerted the Receiver of Wreck to the existence of further remains. As a result of this new discovery the Isles of Scilly Museum in Hugh Town was handed a vast collection of artefacts from this wreck for display. These new remains turned out to be the stern of the wreck, which held a large carving from the stern port quarter gallery. This carving was discovered by local diver Carmen Stevens and the wreck site was designated on 4 July 2001 under the Protection of Wrecks Act as a result of the find, meaning that diving or other interference within 300 metres of the site was not permitted without a licence.

In August 2001 the Archaeological Diving Unit of the University of St Andrews obtained a survey licence and carried out a pre-disturbance survey of the site. The Colossus carving was recovered from the site in 2002 (as shown in a Time Team TV special in October 2002) and after conservation by the Mary Rose Trust, was returned to Scilly in 2010 to be placed on display in the Valhalla figurehead collection on Tresco Island. Further extensive licensed surveys were carried out by the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Archaeological Society from 2003 to 2005.

Exploration of the wreck is ongoing year on year by Survey Licence Holder Todd Stevens and IMAG (The Islands Maritime Archaeological Group) who have produced an overall site plan of the whole wreck site. The Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Maritime Archaeology Society (CISMAS) has been routinely inspecting and recording the site since 2001. The CISMAS projects are funded and endorsed by English Heritage. In May 2012 CISMAS is embarking on a major excavation of a portion of the stern of the wreck. The full details of the work to be undertaken can be accessed through the CISMAS website and the excavation will running a daily diary through its Facebook page.



The Courageux-class ships of the line were a class of six 74-gun third rates of the Royal Navy. Their design was a direct copy of the French ship Courageux, captured in 1761 by HMS Bellona. This class of ship is sometimes referred to as the Leviathan class. A further two ships of the class were built to a slightly lengthened version of the Courageux draught. A final two ships were ordered to a third modification of the draught.

HMS_Aboukir_(1807).jpg
HMS Aboukir (1807)

Ships
Standard group

Builder: Dudman, Deptford
Ordered: 14 July 1779
Launched: 21 January 1783
Fate: Broken up, 1825
Builder: Clevely, Gravesend
Ordered: 13 December 1781
Launched: 4 April 1787
Fate: Wrecked, 1798
Builder: Chatham Dockyard
Ordered: 9 December 1779
Launched: 9 October 1790
Fate: Sold out of the service, 1848
Builder: Woolwich Dockyard
Ordered: 3 December 1782
Launched: 6 November 1793
Fate: Wrecked, 1810

Lengthened group
Builder: Brindley, Frindsbury
Ordered: 24 November 1802
Launched: 18 November 1807
Fate: Sold, 1838
Builder: Deptford Dockyard
Ordered: 23 July 1805
Launched: 28 March 1808
Fate: Broken up, 1825

Modified group
Builder: Deptford Dockyard
Ordered: 30 October 1805
Launched: 23 August 1808
Fate: Sold, 1816
Builder: Woolwich Dockyard
Ordered: 30 October 1805
Launched: 3 March 1809
Fate: Sold, 1816


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Colossus_(1787)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Courageux-class_ship_of_the_line
http://collections.rmg.co.uk/collec...el-303893;browseBy=vessel;vesselFacetLetter=C
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1804 - Action of 7 December 1804


The Action of 7 December 1804 was a minor naval action that took place at the beginning of the Napoleonic Wars. Royal Navy ship-of-the-line HMS Polyphemus (64) under the command of Captain John Lawford, and the frigate HMS Lively (38) under the command of Captain Graham Hamond captured the Spanish frigate Santa Gertrudis off Cape Santa Maria.

After the outbreak of war with France and Spain in 1804, the Royal Navy's HMS Polyphemus and HMS Lively were cruising off the coast of Spain and had captured several Spanish ships.

On 7 December a sail was spotted off the coast of Cape Santa Maria. Polyphemus and Lively intercepted and after a short action overhauled the frigate. The Spanish captain seeing that resistance was useless stuck the colours.

Santa Gertrudis a frigate of 40-guns, was armed only with fourteen, and was sailing from Peru and Mexico to Coruna when Polyphemus captured her. Polyphemus and Santa Gertrudis separated in a gale that damaged the Spanish ship, which nonetheless reached Plymouth on 10 January 1805, in tow by the armed defence ship Harriet, which had encountered Santa Gertrudis some days after the gale.

Santa Gertrudis was carrying $1,215,000, and merchandize. The prize money was shared a like making the captains rich for life.

The Royal Navy took her into service as HMS Santa Gertruda, but did not commission the 40-year-old ship. Instead she served as a receiving ship



HMS Polyphemus (1782 - 64), a 64-gun third-rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, launched on 27 April 1782 at Sheerness. She participated in the 1801 Battle of Copenhagen, the Battle of Trafalgar, and the Siege of Santo Domingo. In 1813 she became a powder hulk and was broken up in 1827.

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Scale: 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, stern board with decoration detail, sheer lines with inboard detail and figurehead, and longitudinal half-breadth for Polyphemus (1782), a 64-gun Third Rate, two-decker, as launched at Sheerness Dockyard, April 1782. Signed by Henry Peake [Master Shipwright, Sheerness Dockyard, 1779-1782].

HMS Lively (1804 - 38) was a 38-gun fifth rate frigate of the Royal Navy, launched on 23 July 1804 at Woolwich Dockyard, and commissioned later that month. She was the prototype of the Lively class of 18-pounder frigates, designed by the Surveyor of the Navy, Sir William Rule. It was probably the most successful British frigate design of the Napoleonic Wars, to which fifteen more sister ships would be ordered between 1803 and 1812.

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Scale: 1:48. Plan showing the body plan, sheer lines, and longitudinal half-breadth for 'Leda' (1800), and later with alterations for 'Pomone' (1805), 'Shannon' (1806), 'Leonidas' (1807), 'Surprise' (1812), 'Lacedemonian' (1812), 'Tenedos' (1812), 'Lively' (1804), 'Trinocomalee' (1817), 'Amphitrite' (1816), 'Hebe' (1826), and 'Venus' (1820), all 38-gun Fifth Rate, Frigates. The draught was prepared from that of the captured French ship 'Hebe' (captured 1782). The plans for 'Amphitrite' and 'Trincomalee' were resent in 1813 on the 'Stirling Castle' after the capture of 'Java' by the US Frigate 'Constitution' in 1812. A duplicate set were dispatched on the Hon East India Company ship 'Tigris' in 1814. This plan was sent to Devonport, arriving on 20 January 1875. The plan was later sent to Chatham, arriving 8 July 1893, for making a half-model of 'Shannon' for the museum in the R. N. College, Greenwich.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Action_of_7_December_1804
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Polyphemus_(1782)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Lively_(1804)
 

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7 December 1906 - Launch of SMS Schleswig-Holstein, the last of the five Deutschland-class battleships built by the German Kaiserliche Marine.


SMS Schleswig-Holstein (pronounced [ˈʃleːsvɪç ˈhɔlʃtaɪn]) was the last of the five Deutschland-class battleships built by the German Kaiserliche Marine. The ship, named for the province of Schleswig-Holstein, was laid down in the Germaniawerft dockyard in Kiel in August 1905 and commissioned into the fleet nearly three years later. The ships of her class were already outdated by the time they entered service, being inferior in size, armor, firepower and speed to the new generation of dreadnought battleships.

Bundesarchiv_DVM_10_Bild-23-63-47,_Linienschiff__Schleswig-Holstein_.jpg
Schleswig-Holstein in late 1930s.

Schleswig-Holstein fought in both World Wars. During World War I, she saw front-line service in the II Battle Squadron of the High Seas Fleet, culminating in the Battle of Jutland on 31 May – 1 June 1916. Schleswig-Holstein saw action during the engagement, and was hit by one large-caliber shell. After the battle, Schleswig-Holstein was relegated to guard duty in the mouth of the Elbe River before being decommissioned in late 1917. As one of the few battleships permitted for Germany by the terms of the Treaty of Versailles, Schleswig-Holstein was again pressed into fleet service in the 1920s. In 1935, the old battleship was converted into a training ship for naval cadets.

Schleswig-Holstein fired the first shots of World War II when she bombarded the Polish base at Danzig's Westerplatte in the early morning hours of 1 September 1939. The ship was used as a training vessel for the majority of the war, and was sunk by British bombers in Gotenhafen in December 1944. Schleswig-Holstein was subsequently salvaged and then beached for use by the Soviet Navy as a target. As of 1990, the ship's bell was on display in the Bundeswehr Military History Museum in Dresden.

Bundesarchiv_DVM_10_Bild-23-61-51,_Geschwader_in_Kiellinie.jpg
Deutschland-class battleships in line

Design
Main article: Deutschland-class battleship

Deutschland_class_line-drawing.png
Line-drawing of the Deutschlandclass

The passage of the Second Naval Law in 1900 under the direction of Vizeadmiral (VAdm – Vice Admiral) Alfred von Tirpitz secured funding for the construction of twenty new battleships over the next seventeen years. The first group, the five Braunschweig-class battleships, were laid down in the early 1900s, and shortly thereafter design work began on a follow-on design, which became the Deutschland class. The Deutschland-class ships were broadly similar to the Braunschweigs and featured incremental improvements in armor protection. They also abandoned the gun turrets for the secondary battery guns, moving them back to traditional casemates to save weight. The British battleship HMS Dreadnought – armed with ten 12-inch (30.5 cm) guns – was commissioned in December 1906. Dreadnought's revolutionary design rendered obsolete every capital ship of the German navy, including Schleswig-Holstein.

Schleswig-Holstein had a length of 127.60 m (418 ft 8 in), a beam of 22.20 m (72 ft 10 in), and a draft of 8.21 m (26 ft 11 in). She displaced 13,200 metric tons (13,000 long tons) normally and up to 14,218 metric tons (13,993 long tons) at combat loading. She was equipped with three triple expansion engines and twelve coal-fired water-tube boilers that produced a rated 16,767 indicated horsepower (12,503 kW) and a top speed of 19.1 knots (35.4 km/h; 22.0 mph). In addition to being the fastest ship of her class, Schleswig-Holstein was the second-most fuel efficient. At a cruising speed of 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph), she could steam for 5,720 nautical miles (10,590 km; 6,580 mi). She had a standard crew of 35 officers and 708 enlisted men.

The ship's primary armament consisted of four 28 cm SK L/40 guns in two twin turrets; one turret was placed forward and the other aft. She was also equipped with fourteen 17 cm (6.7 in) SK L/40 guns mounted in casemates and twenty 8.8 cm (3.5 in) SK L/35 guns in pivot mounts. The ship was also armed with six 45 cm (18 in) torpedo tubes, all below the waterline. One was in the bow, one in the stern, and four on the broadside. Her armored belt was 240 mm (9.4 in) thick amidships, and she had a 40 mm (1.6 in) thick armored deck. The main battery turrets had 280 mm (11 in) thick sides.

Bundesarchiv_Bild_101II-MN-1002-07A,_Linienschiff__Schleswig-Holstein_.jpg Bundesarchiv_Bild_102-13833,_Linienschiff__Schleswig-Holstein_.jpg

The ships of the class
Unbenannt.JPG


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMS_Schleswig-Holstein
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deutschland-class_battleship
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1941 – World War II: Attack on Pearl Harbor: The Imperial Japanese Navy carries out a surprise attack on the United States Pacific Fleet and its defending Army and Marine air forces at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The U.S. is brought into the World War II as a full combatant.


The attack on Pearl Harbor was a surprise military strike by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service against the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii Territory, on the morning of December 7, 1941. The attack, also known as the Battle of Pearl Harbor, led to the United States' entry into World War II. The Japanese military leadership referred to the attack as the Hawaii Operation and Operation AI, and as Operation Z during its planning.

Japan intended the attack as a preventive action to keep the U.S. Pacific Fleet from interfering with its planned military actions in Southeast Asia against overseas territories of the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and the United States. Over the course of seven hours there were coordinated Japanese attacks on the U.S.-held Philippines, Guam and Wake Island and on the British Empire in Malaya, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

The attack commenced at 7:48 a.m. Hawaiian Time (18:18 GMT). The base was attacked by 353 Imperial Japanese aircraft (including fighters, level and dive bombers, and torpedo bombers) in two waves, launched from six aircraft carriers. All eight U.S. Navy battleships were damaged, with four sunk. All but the USS Arizona were later raised, and six were returned to service and went on to fight in the war. The Japanese also sank or damaged three cruisers, three destroyers, an anti-aircraft training ship, and one minelayer. One hundred eighty-eight U.S. aircraft were destroyed; 2,403 Americans were killed and 1,178 others were wounded. Important base installations such as the power station, dry dock, shipyard, maintenance, and fuel and torpedo storage facilities, as well as the submarine piers and headquarters building (also home of the intelligence section), were not attacked. Japanese losses were light: 29 aircraft and five midget submarines lost, and 64 servicemen killed. One Japanese sailor, Kazuo Sakamaki, was captured.

The surprise attack came as a profound shock to the American people and led directly to the American entry into World War II in both the Pacific and European theaters. The following day, December 8, the United States declared war on Japan, and several days later, on December 11, Germany and Italy each declared war on the U.S. The U.S. responded with a declaration of war against Germany and Italy. Domestic support for non-interventionism, which had been fading since the Fall of France in 1940, disappeared.

There were numerous historical precedents for unannounced military action by Japan, but the lack of any formal warning, particularly while negotiations were still apparently ongoing, led President Franklin D. Roosevelt to proclaim December 7, 1941, "a date which will live in infamy". Because the attack happened without a declaration of war and without explicit warning, the attack on Pearl Harbor was later judged in the Tokyo Trials to be a war crime.


Objectives

The Japanese attack had several major aims. First, it intended to destroy important American fleet units, thereby preventing the Pacific Fleet from interfering with Japanese conquest of the Dutch East Indies and Malaya and to enable Japan to conquer Southeast Asia without interference. Second, it was hoped to buy time for Japan to consolidate its position and increase its naval strength before shipbuilding authorized by the 1940 Vinson-Walsh Act erased any chance of victory. Third, to deliver a blow to America's ability to mobilize its forces in the Pacific, battleships were chosen as the main targets, since they were the prestige ships of any navy at the time. Finally, it was hoped that the attack would undermine American morale such that the U.S. government would drop its demands contrary to Japanese interests, and would seek a compromise peace with Japan.

Pearl_Harbor_looking_southwest-Oct41.jpg
Pearl Harbor on October 30, 1941, looking southwest

Striking the Pacific Fleet at anchor in Pearl Harbor carried two distinct disadvantages: the targeted ships would be in very shallow water, so it would be relatively easy to salvage and possibly repair them; and most of the crews would survive the attack, since many would be on shore leave or would be rescued from the harbor. A further important disadvantage—this of timing, and known to the Japanese—was the absence from Pearl Harbor of all three of the U.S. Pacific Fleet's aircraft carriers (Enterprise, Lexington, and Saratoga). IJN top command was attached to Admiral Mahan's "decisive battle" doctrine, especially that of destroying the maximum number of battleships. Despite these concerns, Yamamoto decided to press ahead.

Japanese confidence in their ability to achieve a short, victorious war also meant other targets in the harbor, especially the navy yard, oil tank farms, and submarine base, were ignored, since—by their thinking—the war would be over before the influence of these facilities would be felt.

Approach and attack
See also: Order of battle of the Attack on Pearl Harbor

PearlHarborCarrierChart.jpg
Route followed by the Japanese fleet to Pearl Harbor and back

1280px-A6M2_on_carrier_Akagi_1941.jpeg
An Imperial Japanese Navy Mitsubishi A6M Zero fighter on the aircraft carrier Akagi

On November 26, 1941, a Japanese task force (the Striking Force) of six aircraft carriers—Akagi, Kaga, Sōryū, Hiryū, Shōkaku, and Zuikaku—departed Hittokapu Bay on Kasatka (now Iterup) Island in the Kurile Islands, en route to a position northwest of Hawaii, intending to launch its 408 aircraft to attack Pearl Harbor: 360 for the two attack waves and 48 on defensive combat air patrol (CAP), including nine fighters from the first wave.

The first wave was to be the primary attack, while the second wave was to attack carriers as its first objective and cruisers as its second, with battleships as the third target. The first wave carried most of the weapons to attack capital ships, mainly specially adapted Type 91 aerial torpedoes which were designed with an anti-roll mechanism and a rudder extension that let them operate in shallow water. The aircrews were ordered to select the highest value targets (battleships and aircraft carriers) or, if these were not present, any other high value ships (cruisers and destroyers). First wave dive bombers were to attack ground targets. Fighters were ordered to strafe and destroy as many parked aircraft as possible to ensure they did not get into the air to intercept the bombers, especially in the first wave. When the fighters' fuel got low they were to refuel at the aircraft carriers and return to combat. Fighters were to serve CAP duties where needed, especially over U.S. airfields.

Before the attack commenced, two reconnaissance aircraft launched from cruisers Chikuma and Tone were sent to scout over Oahu and Maui and report on U.S. fleet composition and location. Reconnaissance aircraft flights risked alerting the U.S., and were not necessary. U.S. fleet composition and preparedness information in Pearl Harbor was already known due to the reports of the Japanese spy Takeo Yoshikawa. A report of the absence of the U.S. fleet in Lahaina anchorage off Maui was received from the fleet submarine I-72. Another four scout planes patrolled the area between the Japanese carrier force (the Kidō Butai) and Niihau, to detect any counterattack.

Submarines
Fleet submarines I-16, I-18, I-20, I-22, and I-24 each embarked a Type A midget submarine for transport to the waters off Oahu. The five I-boats left Kure Naval District on November 25, 1941. On December 6, they came to within 10 nmi (19 km; 12 mi) of the mouth of Pearl Harbor and launched their midget subs at about 01:00 local time on December 7. At 03:42 Hawaiian Time, the minesweeper Condor spotted a midget submarine periscope southwest of the Pearl Harbor entrance buoy and alerted the destroyer Ward. The midget may have entered Pearl Harbor. However, Ward sank another midget submarine at 06:37 in the first American shots in the Pacific Theater. A midget submarine on the north side of Ford Island missed the seaplane tender Curtiss with her first torpedo and missed the attacking destroyer Monaghan with her other one before being sunk by Monaghan at 08:43.

A third midget submarine, Ha-19, grounded twice, once outside the harbor entrance and again on the east side of Oahu, where it was captured on December 8. Ensign Kazuo Sakamaki swam ashore and was captured by Hawaii National Guard Corporal David Akui, becoming the first Japanese prisoner of war. A fourth had been damaged by a depth charge attack and was abandoned by its crew before it could fire its torpedoes. Japanese forces received a radio message from a midget submarine at 00:41 on December 8 claiming damage to one or more large warships inside Pearl Harbor.

In 1992, 2000, and 2001, Hawaii Undersea Research Laboratory's submersibles found the wreck of the fifth midget submarine lying in three parts outside Pearl Harbor. The wreck was in the debris field where much surplus U.S. equipment was dumped after the war, including vehicles and landing craft. Both of its torpedoes were missing. This correlates with reports of two torpedoes fired at the light cruiser St. Louis at 10:04 at the entrance of Pearl Harbor, and a possible torpedo fired at destroyer Helm at 08:21.

Japanese declaration of war
See also: Japanese war crimes
The attack took place before any formal declaration of war was made by Japan, but this was not Admiral Yamamoto's intention. He originally stipulated that the attack should not commence until thirty minutes after Japan had informed the United States that peace negotiations were at an end. However, the attack began before the notice could be delivered. Tokyo transmitted the 5000-word notification (commonly called the "14-Part Message") in two blocks to the Japanese Embassy in Washington. Transcribing the message took too long for the Japanese ambassador to deliver it on schedule; in the event, it was not presented until more than an hour after the attack began. (In fact, U.S. code breakers had already deciphered and translated most of the message hours before he was scheduled to deliver it.) The final part is sometimes described as a declaration of war. While it was viewed by a number of senior U.S government and military officials as a very strong indicator negotiations were likely to be terminated and that war might break out at any moment, it neither declared war nor severed diplomatic relations. A declaration of war was printed on the front page of Japan's newspapers in the evening edition of December 8, but not delivered to the U.S. government until the day after the attack.

For decades, conventional wisdom held that Japan attacked without first formally breaking diplomatic relations only because of accidents and bumbling that delayed the delivery of a document hinting at war to Washington. In 1999, however, Takeo Iguchi, a professor of law and international relations at International Christian University in Tokyo, discovered documents that pointed to a vigorous debate inside the government over how, and indeed whether, to notify Washington of Japan's intention to break off negotiations and start a war, including a December 7 entry in the war diary saying, "[O]ur deceptive diplomacy is steadily proceeding toward success." Of this, Iguchi said, "The diary shows that the army and navy did not want to give any proper declaration of war, or indeed prior notice even of the termination of negotiations ... and they clearly prevailed."

In any event, even if the Japanese had decoded and delivered the 14-Part Message before the beginning of the attack, it would not have constituted either a formal break of diplomatic relations or a declaration of war. The final two paragraphs of the message read:

Thus the earnest hope of the Japanese Government to adjust Japanese-American relations and to preserve and promote the peace of the Pacific through cooperation with the American Government has finally been lost.

The Japanese Government regrets to have to notify hereby the American Government that in view of the attitude of the American Government it cannot but consider that it is impossible to reach an agreement through further negotiations.



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attack_on_Pearl_Harbor
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1941 – World War II: Attack on Pearl Harbor - Part II


First wave composition

800px-Pearlmap1.png
The Japanese attacked in two waves. The first wave was detected by U.S. Army radar at 136 nautical miles (252 km), but was misidentified as USAAF bombers arriving from the American mainland
Top:
A. Ford Island NAS B. Hickam Field C. Bellows Field D. Wheeler Field
E. Kaneohe NAS F. Ewa MCAS R-1. Opana Radar Station R-2. Kawailoa RS R-3. Kaaawa RS
G. Haleiwa H. Kahuku I. Wahiawa J. Kaneohe K. Honolulu
0. B-17s from mainland 1. First strike group 1-1. Level bombers 1–2. Torpedo bombers 1–3. Dive bombers 2. Second strike group 2-1. Level bombers 2-1F. Fighters 2-2. Dive bombers
Bottom:
A. Wake Island B. Midway Islands C. Johnston Island D. Hawaii
D-1. Oahu 1. USS Lexington 2. USS Enterprise 3. First Air Fleet


Pearlmap2.png
Attacked targets:
1: USS California
2: USS Maryland
3: USS Oklahoma
4: USS Tennessee
5: USS West Virginia
6: USS Arizona
7: USS Nevada
8: USS Pennsylvania
9: Ford Island NAS
10: Hickam field
Ignored infrastructure targets:
A: Oil storage tanks
B: CINCPAC headquarters building
C: Submarine base
D: Navy Yard


The first attack wave of 183 planes was launched north of Oahu, led by Commander Mitsuo Fuchida. Six planes failed to launch due to technical difficulties. It included:
  • 1st Group (targets: battleships and aircraft carriers)
    • 49 Nakajima B5N Kate bombers armed with 800 kg (1760 lb) armor-piercing bombs, organized in four sections (1 failed to launch)
    • 40 B5N bombers armed with Type 91 torpedoes, also in four sections
  • 2nd Group – (targets: Ford Island and Wheeler Field)
    • 51 Aichi D3A Val dive bombers armed with 550 lb (249 kg) general-purpose bombs (3 failed to launch)
  • 3rd Group – (targets: aircraft at Ford Island, Hickam Field, Wheeler Field, Barber's Point, Kaneohe)
    • 43 Mitsubishi A6M "Zero" fighters for air control and strafing (2 failed to launch)
As the first wave approached Oahu, it was detected by the U.S. Army SCR-270 radar at Opana Point near the island's northern tip. This post had been in training mode for months, but was not yet operational. The operators, Privates George Elliot Jr. and Joseph Lockard, reported a target. But Lieutenant Kermit A. Tyler, a newly assigned officer at the thinly manned Intercept Center, presumed it was the scheduled arrival of six B-17 bombers from California. The Japanese planes were approaching from a direction very close (only a few degrees difference) to the bombers, and while the operators had never seen a formation as large on radar, they neglected to tell Tyler of its size. Tyler, for security reasons, could not tell the operators of the six B-17s that were due (even though it was widely known).

As the first wave planes approached Oahu, they encountered and shot down several U.S. aircraft. At least one of these radioed a somewhat incoherent warning. Other warnings from ships off the harbor entrance were still being processed or awaiting confirmation when the attacking planes began bombing and strafing. Nevertheless, it is not clear any warnings would have had much effect even if they had been interpreted correctly and much more promptly. The results the Japanese achieved in the Philippines were essentially the same as at Pearl Harbor, though MacArthur had almost nine hours warning that the Japanese had already attacked Pearl Harbor.

The air portion of the attack began at 7:48 a.m. Hawaiian Time (3:18 a.m. December 8 Japanese Standard Time, as kept by ships of the Kido Butai), with the attack on Kaneohe. A total of 353 Japanese planes in two waves reached Oahu. Slow, vulnerable torpedo bombers led the first wave, exploiting the first moments of surprise to attack the most important ships present (the battleships), while dive bombers attacked U.S. air bases across Oahu, starting with Hickam Field, the largest, and Wheeler Field, the main U.S. Army Air Forces fighter base. The 171 planes in the second wave attacked the Army Air Forces' Bellows Field near Kaneohe on the windward side of the island, and Ford Island. The only aerial opposition came from a handful of P-36 Hawks, P-40 Warhawks, and some SBD Dauntless dive bombers from the carrier Enterprise.

View attachment 66518
A destroyed Vindicator at Ewa field, the victim of one of the smaller attacks on the approach to Pearl Harbor


In the first wave attack, about eight of the forty-nine 800 kg (1760 lb) armor-piercing bombs dropped hit their intended battleship targets. At least two of those bombs broke up on impact, another detonated before penetrating an unarmored deck, and one was a dud. Thirteen of the forty torpedoes hit battleships, and four torpedoes hit other ships. Men aboard U.S. ships awoke to the sounds of alarms, bombs exploding, and gunfire, prompting bleary-eyed men to dress as they ran to General Quarters stations. (The famous message, "Air raid Pearl Harbor. This is not drill.", was sent from the headquarters of Patrol Wing Two, the first senior Hawaiian command to respond.) The defenders were very unprepared. Ammunition lockers were locked, aircraft parked wingtip to wingtip in the open to prevent sabotage, guns unmanned (none of the Navy's 5"/38s, only a quarter of its machine guns, and only four of 31 Army batteries got in action). Despite this low alert status, many American military personnel responded effectively during the attack. Ensign Joe Taussig Jr., aboard Nevada, commanded the ship's antiaircraft guns and was severely wounded, but continued to be on post. Lt. Commander F. J. Thomas commanded Nevada in the captain's absence and got her under way until the ship was grounded at 9:10 a.m. One of the destroyers, Aylwin, got underway with only four officers aboard, all ensigns, none with more than a year's sea duty; she operated at sea for 36 hours before her commanding officer managed to get back aboard. Captain Mervyn Bennion, commanding West Virginia, led his men until he was cut down by fragments from a bomb which hit Tennessee, moored alongside.

Second wave composition
The second planned wave consisted of 171 planes: 54 B5Ns, 81 D3As, and 36 A6Ms, commanded by Lieutenant-Commander Shigekazu Shimazaki. Four planes failed to launch because of technical difficulties. This wave and its targets comprised:

  • 1st Group – 54 B5Ns armed with 550 lb (249 kg) and 132 lb (60 kg) general-purpose bombs
    • 27 B5Ns – aircraft and hangars on Kaneohe, Ford Island, and Barbers Point
    • 27 B5Ns – hangars and aircraft on Hickam Field
  • 2nd Group (targets: aircraft carriers and cruisers)
    • 78 D3As armed with 550 lb (249 kg) general-purpose bombs, in four sections (3 aborted)
  • 3rd Group – (targets: aircraft at Ford Island, Hickam Field, Wheeler Field, Barber's Point, Kaneohe)
    • 35 A6Ms for defense and strafing (1 aborted)
The second wave was divided into three groups. One was tasked to attack Kāneʻohe, the rest Pearl Harbor proper. The separate sections arrived at the attack point almost simultaneously from several directions.

American casualties and damage
Ninety minutes after it began, the attack was over. Two thousand and eight sailors were killed, and 710 others wounded; 218 soldiers and airmen (who were part of the Army until the independent U.S. Air Force was formed in 1947) were killed and 364 wounded; 109 marines were killed and 69 wounded; and 68 civilians were killed and 35 wounded. In total, 2,335 American servicemen were killed and 1,143 were wounded. Eighteen ships were sunk or run aground, including five battleships. All of the Americans killed or wounded during the attack were non-combatants, given the fact there was no state of war when the attack occurred.

1280px-The_USS_Arizona_(BB-39)_burning_after_the_Japanese_attack_on_Pearl_Harbor_-_NARA_195617...jpg
USS Arizona during the attack

USS_Nevada_passing_seaplane_ramp_prior_to_first_grounding_NARA_80-G-32894.jpg
USS Nevada, on fire and down at the bow, attempting to leave the harbor before being deliberately beached

Of the American fatalities, nearly half were due to the explosion of Arizona's forward magazine after it was hit by a modified 16-inch (410 mm) shell.

Already damaged by a torpedo and on fire amidships, Nevada attempted to exit the harbor. She was targeted by many Japanese bombers as she got under way and sustained more hits from 250 lb (113 kg) bombs, which started further fires. She was deliberately beached to avoid blocking the harbor entrance.

USS_West_Virginia2.jpg
USS West Virginia was sunk by six torpedoes and two bombs during the attack.

California was hit by two bombs and two torpedoes. The crew might have kept her afloat, but were ordered to abandon ship just as they were raising power for the pumps. Burning oil from Arizona and West Virginia drifted down on her, and probably made the situation look worse than it was. The disarmed target ship Utah was holed twice by torpedoes. West Virginia was hit by seven torpedoes, the seventh tearing away her rudder. Oklahoma was hit by four torpedoes, the last two above her belt armor, which caused her to capsize. Maryland was hit by two of the converted 16" shells, but neither caused serious damage.

Although the Japanese concentrated on battleships (the largest vessels present), they did not ignore other targets. The light cruiser Helena was torpedoed, and the concussion from the blast capsized the neighboring minelayer Oglala. Two destroyers in dry dock, Cassin and Downes were destroyed when bombs penetrated their fuel bunkers. The leaking fuel caught fire; flooding the dry dock in an effort to fight fire made the burning oil rise, and both were burned out. Cassin slipped from her keel blocks and rolled against Downes. The light cruiser Raleigh was holed by a torpedo. The light cruiser Honolulu was damaged, but remained in service. The repair vessel Vestal, moored alongside Arizona, was heavily damaged and beached. The seaplane tender Curtiss was also damaged. The destroyer Shaw was badly damaged when two bombs penetrated her forward magazine.

1024px-Message_pertaining_to_the_attack_on_Pearl_Harbor._-_NARA_-_296806.jpg
This message denotes the first U.S. ship, St. Louis to clear Pearl Harbor. (National Archives and Records Administration) (Note that this is in answer to question "Is channel clear?" and faint writing at bottom concerning the answer being held until St. Louis had successfully cleared.)

Of the 402 American aircraft in Hawaii, 188 were destroyed and 159 damaged, 155 of them on the ground. Almost none were actually ready to take off to defend the base. Eight Army Air Forces pilots managed to get airborne during the attack and six were credited with downing at least one Japanese aircraft during the attack: 1st Lt. Lewis M. Sanders, 2nd Lt. Philip M. Rasmussen, 2nd Lt. Kenneth M. Taylor, 2nd Lt. George S. Welch, 2nd Lt. Harry W. Brown, and 2nd Lt. Gordon H. Sterling Jr. Sterling was shot down by Lt. Fujita over Kaneohe Bay and is listed as Body Not Recovered (not Missing In Action). Lt. John L. Dains was killed by friendly fire returning from a victory over Kaawa. Of 33 PBYs in Hawaii, 24 were destroyed, and six others damaged beyond repair. (The three on patrol returned undamaged.) Friendly fire brought down some U.S. planes on top of that, including five from an inbound flight from Enterprise. Japanese attacks on barracks killed additional personnel.

At the time of the attack, nine civilian aircraft were flying in the vicinity of Pearl Harbor. Of these, three were shot down.

Japanese losses
Fifty-five Japanese airmen and nine submariners were killed in the attack, and one was captured. Of Japan's 414 available planes, 29 were lost during the battle (nine in the first attack wave, 20 in the second), with another 74 damaged by antiaircraft fire from the ground.

Possible third wave
Several Japanese junior officers including Fuchida and Genda urged Nagumo to carry out a third strike in order to destroy as much of Pearl Harbor's fuel and torpedo storage, maintenance, and dry dock facilities as possible. Genda, who had unsuccessfully advocated for invading Hawaii after the air attack, believed that without an invasion, three strikes were necessary to disable the base as much as possible. The captains of the other five carriers in the task force reported they were willing and ready to carry out a third strike. Military historians have suggested the destruction of these shore facilities would have hampered the U.S. Pacific Fleet far more seriously than the loss of its battleships. If they had been wiped out, "serious [American] operations in the Pacific would have been postponed for more than a year"; according to Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, later Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet, "it would have prolonged the war another two years." Nagumo, however, decided to withdraw for several reasons:

  • American anti-aircraft performance had improved considerably during the second strike, and two thirds of Japan's losses were incurred during the second wave.
  • Nagumo felt if he launched a third strike, he would be risking three quarters of the Combined Fleet's strength to wipe out the remaining targets (which included the facilities) while suffering higher aircraft losses.
  • The location of the American carriers remained unknown. In addition, the admiral was concerned his force was now within range of American land-based bombers. Nagumo was uncertain whether the U.S. had enough surviving planes remaining on Hawaii to launch an attack against his carriers.
  • A third wave would have required substantial preparation and turnaround time, and would have meant returning planes would have had to land at night. At the time, only the Royal Navy had developed night carrier techniques, so this was a substantial risk.
  • The task force's fuel situation did not permit him to remain in waters north of Pearl Harbor much longer, since he was at the very limit of logistical support. To do so risked running unacceptably low on fuel, perhaps even having to abandon destroyers en route home.
  • He believed the second strike had essentially satisfied the main objective of his mission—the neutralization of the Pacific Fleet—and did not wish to risk further losses. Moreover, it was Japanese Navy practice to prefer the conservation of strength over the total destruction of the enemy.
At a conference aboard his flagship the following morning, Yamamoto supported Nagumo's withdrawal without launching a third wave. In retrospect, sparing the vital dockyards, maintenance shops, and the oil tank farm meant the U.S. could respond relatively quickly to Japanese activities in the Pacific. Yamamoto later regretted Nagumo's decision to withdraw and categorically stated it had been a great mistake not to order a third strike.



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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1941 – World War II: Attack on Pearl Harbor - Part III


Ships lost or damaged
Twenty-one ships were damaged or lost in the attack, of which all but three were repaired and returned to service.

Battleships
  • Arizona (RADM Kidd's flagship of Battleship Division One): hit by four armor-piercing bombs, exploded; total loss. 1,177 dead.
  • Oklahoma: hit by five torpedoes, capsized; total loss. 429 dead.
  • West Virginia: hit by two bombs, seven torpedoes, sunk; returned to service July 1944. 106 dead.
  • California: hit by two bombs, two torpedoes, sunk; returned to service January 1944. 100 dead.
  • Nevada: hit by six bombs, one torpedo, beached; returned to service October 1942. 60 dead.
  • Pennsylvania (ADM Kimmel's flagship of the United States Pacific Fleet): in drydock with Cassin and Downes, hit by one bomb and debris from USS Cassin; remained in service. 9 dead.
  • Tennessee: hit by two bombs; returned to service February 1942. 5 dead.
  • Maryland: hit by two bombs; returned to service February 1942. 4 dead (including floatplane pilot shot down).
Ex-battleship (target/AA training ship)
  • Utah: hit by two torpedoes, capsized; total loss. 64 dead.
Cruisers
  • Helena: hit by one torpedo; returned to service January 1942. 20 dead.
  • Raleigh: hit by one torpedo; returned to service February 1942.
  • Honolulu: Near miss, light damage; remained in service.
Destroyers
  • Cassin: in drydock with Downes and Pennsylvania, hit by one bomb, burned; returned to service February 1944.
  • Downes: in drydock with Cassin and Pennsylvania, caught fire from Cassin, burned; returned to service November 1943.
  • Helm: underway to West Loch, damaged by two near-miss bombs; continued patrol; dry-docked 15 January 1942 and sailed 20 January 1942.
  • Shaw: hit by three bombs; returned to service June 1942.
Auxiliaries
  • Oglala (minelayer): Damaged by torpedo hit on Helena, capsized; returned to service (as engine-repair ship) February 1944.
  • Vestal (repair ship): hit by two bombs, blast and fire from Arizona, beached; returned to service by August 1942.
  • Curtiss (seaplane tender): hit by one bomb, one crashed Japanese aircraft; returned to service January 1942. 19 dead.
  • Sotoyomo (harbor tug): damaged by explosion and fires in Shaw; sunk; returned to service August 1942.
  • YFD-2 (yard floating dock): damaged by 250 kg bombs; sunk; returned to service 25 January 1942 servicing Shaw.
Salvage

NH64486_Wallin_aboard_BB-44.jpg
Captain Homer N. Wallin (center) supervises salvage operations aboard USS California, early 1942

After a systematic search for survivors, formal salvage operations began. Captain Homer N. Wallin, Material Officer for Commander, Battle Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, was immediately ordered to lead salvage operations. "Within a short time I was relieved of all other duties and ordered to full time work as Fleet Salvage Officer."

Around Pearl Harbor, divers from the Navy (shore and tenders), the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard, and civilian contractors (Pacific Bridge and others) began work on the ships that could be refloated. They patched holes, cleared debris, and pumped water out of ships. Navy divers worked inside the damaged ships. Within six months, five battleships and two cruisers were patched or refloated so they could be sent to shipyards in Pearl Harbor and on the mainland for extensive repair.

Intensive salvage operations continued for another year, a total of some 20,000 man-hours under water.[120] Oklahoma, while successfully raised, was never repaired, and capsized while under tow to the mainland in 1947. Arizona and the target ship Utah were too heavily damaged for salvage, though much of their armament and equipment was removed and put to use aboard other vessels. Today, the two hulks remain where they were sunk, with Arizona becoming a war memorial.


Aftermath
Main article: Consequences of the attack on Pearl Harbor

U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt signing declaration of war against Imperial Japan on December 8, 1941

In the wake of the attack, 15 Medals of Honor, 51 Navy Crosses, 53 Silver Stars, four Navy and Marine Corps Medals, one Distinguished Flying Cross, four Distinguished Service Crosses, one Distinguished Service Medal, and three Bronze Star Medals were awarded to the American servicemen who distinguished themselves in combat at Pearl Harbor. Additionally, a special military award, the Pearl Harbor Commemorative Medal, was later authorized for all military veterans of the attack.

The day after the attack, Roosevelt delivered his famous Infamy Speech to a Joint Session of Congress, calling for a formal declaration of war on the Empire of Japan. Congress obliged his request less than an hour later. On December 11, Germany and Italy declared war on the United States, even though the Tripartite Pact did not require it. Congress issued a declaration of war against Germany and Italy later that same day. The UK actually declared war on Japan nine hours before the U.S. did, partially due to Japanese attacks on Malaya, Singapore and Hong Kong, and partially due to Winston Churchill's promise to declare war "within the hour" of a Japanese attack on the United States.

800px-USS_Downes_(DD-375),_USS_Cassin_(DD-372)_and_USS_Pennsylvania_(BB-38)_in_Dry_Dock_No._1_...jpg
Pennsylvania, behind the wreckage of Downes and Cassin

The attack was an initial shock to all the Allies in the Pacific Theater. Further losses compounded the alarming setback. Japan attacked the Philippines hours later (because of the time difference, it was December 8 in the Philippines). Only three days after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the battleships Prince of Wales and Repulse were sunk off the coast of Malaya, causing British Prime Minister Winston Churchill later to recollect "In all the war I never received a more direct shock. As I turned and twisted in bed the full horror of the news sank in upon me. There were no British or American capital ships in the Indian Ocean or the Pacific except the American survivors of Pearl Harbor who were hastening back to California. Over this vast expanse of waters Japan was supreme and we everywhere were weak and naked".

800px-Remember_december_7th.jpg
Remember December 7th!, by Allen Saalburg, propaganda issued in 1942

Throughout the war, Pearl Harbor was frequently used in American propaganda.

One further consequence of the attack on Pearl Harbor and its aftermath (notably the Niihau incident) was that Japanese American residents and citizens were relocated to nearby Japanese-American internment camps. Within hours of the attack, hundreds of Japanese American leaders were rounded up and brought to high-security camps such as Sand Island at the mouth of Honolulu harbor and Kilauea Military Camp on the island of Hawaii. Eventually, more than 110,000 Japanese Americans, nearly all who lived on the West Coast, were forced into interior camps, but in Hawaii, where the 150,000-plus Japanese Americans composed over one-third of the population, only 1,200 to 1,800 were interned.

The attack also had international consequences. The Canadian province of British Columbia, bordering the Pacific Ocean, had long had a large population of Japanese immigrants and their Japanese Canadian descendants. Pre-war tensions were exacerbated by the Pearl Harbor attack, leading to a reaction from the Government of Canada. On February 24, 1942, Order-in-Council P.C. no. 1486 was passed under the War Measures Act allowing for the forced removal of any and all Canadians of Japanese descent from British Columbia, as well as the prohibiting them from returning to the province. On 4 March, regulations under the Act were adopted to evacuate Japanese-Canadians. As a result, 12,000 were interned in interior camps, 2,000 were sent to road camps and another 2,000 were forced to work in the prairies at sugar beet farms.


Petty Officer Shigenori Nishikaichi's aircraft shown ten days after it crashed

Niihau Incident
Main article: Niihau incident
The Japanese planners had determined that some means was required for rescuing fliers whose aircraft were too badly damaged to return to the carriers. The island of Niihau, only 30 minutes flying time from Pearl Harbor, was designated as the rescue point.

The Zero flown by Petty Officer Shigenori Nishikaichi of Hiryu was damaged in the attack on Wheeler, so he flew to the rescue point on Niihau. The aircraft was further damaged on landing. Nishikaichi was helped from the wreckage by one of the native Hawaiians, who, aware of the tension between the United States and Japan, took the pilot's maps and other documents. The island's residents had no telephones or radio and were completely unaware of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Nishikaichi enlisted the support of three Japanese-American residents in an attempt to recover the documents. During the ensuing struggles, Nishikaichi was killed and a Hawaiian civilian was wounded; one collaborator committed suicide, and his wife and the third collaborator were sent to prison.

The ease with which the local ethnic Japanese residents had apparently gone to the assistance of Nishikaichi was a source of concern for many, and tended to support those who believed that local Japanese could not be trusted.

Strategic implications
Admiral Hara Tadaichi summed up the Japanese result by saying, "We won a great tactical victory at Pearl Harbor and thereby lost the war." To a similar effect, see Isoroku Yamamoto's alleged "sleeping giant" quote.

Isoroku Yamamoto's sleeping giant quotation is a film quote by the Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto regarding the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor by forces of Imperial Japan.
The quotation is portrayed at the very end of the 1970 film Tora! Tora! Tora! as:

I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.
An abridged version of the quotation is also featured in the 2001 film Pearl Harbor.
Although the quotation may well have encapsulated many of his real feelings about the attack, there is no printed evidence to prove Yamamoto made this statement or wrote it down.



While the attack accomplished its intended objective, it turned out to be largely unnecessary. Unbeknownst to Yamamoto, who conceived the original plan, the U.S. Navy had decided as far back as 1935 to abandon 'charging' across the Pacific towards the Philippines in response to an outbreak of war (in keeping with the evolution of Plan Orange). The U.S. instead adopted "Plan Dog" in 1940, which emphasized keeping the IJN out of the eastern Pacific and away from the shipping lanes to Australia, while the U.S. concentrated on defeating Nazi Germany.

Fortunately for the United States, the American aircraft carriers were untouched by the Japanese attack; otherwise the Pacific Fleet's ability to conduct offensive operations would have been crippled for a year or more (given no diversions from the Atlantic Fleet). As it was, the elimination of the battleships left the U.S. Navy with no choice but to rely on its aircraft carriers and submarines—the very weapons with which the U.S. Navy halted and eventually reversed the Japanese advance. While six of the eight battleships were repaired and returned to service, their relatively low speed and high fuel consumption limited their deployment, and they served mainly in shore bombardment roles (their only major action being the Battle of Surigao Strait in October 1944). A major flaw of Japanese strategic thinking was a belief that the ultimate Pacific battle would be fought by battleships, in keeping with the doctrine of Captain Alfred Thayer Mahan. As a result, Yamamoto (and his successors) hoarded battleships for a "decisive battle" that never happened.

The Japanese confidence in their ability to achieve a short, victorious war meant that they neglected Pearl Harbor's navy repair yards, oil tank farms, submarine base, and old headquarters building. All of these targets were omitted from Genda's list, yet they proved more important than any battleship to the American war efforts in the Pacific. The survival of the repair shops and fuel depots allowed Pearl Harbor to maintain logistical support to the U.S. Navy's operations, such as the Doolittle Raid and the Battles of Coral Sea and Midway. It was submarines that immobilized the Imperial Japanese Navy's heavy ships and brought Japan's economy to a virtual standstill by crippling the transportation of oil and raw materials: by the end of 1942, import of raw materials was cut to half of what it had been, "to a disastrous ten million tons", while oil import "was almost completely stopped". Lastly, the basement of the Old Administration Building was the home of the cryptanalytic unit which contributed significantly to the Midway ambush and the Submarine Force's success.


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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1941 – World War II: Attack on Pearl Harbor - Part IV


Ships lost or damaged
Twenty-one ships were damaged or lost in the attack, of which all but three were repaired and returned to service.

Battleships

  • Arizona (RADM Kidd's flagship of Battleship Division One): hit by four armor-piercing bombs, exploded; total loss. 1,177 dead.
  • Oklahoma: hit by five torpedoes, capsized; total loss. 429 dead.
  • West Virginia: hit by two bombs, seven torpedoes, sunk; returned to service July 1944. 106 dead.
  • California: hit by two bombs, two torpedoes, sunk; returned to service January 1944. 100 dead.
  • Nevada: hit by six bombs, one torpedo, beached; returned to service October 1942. 60 dead.
  • Pennsylvania (ADM Kimmel's flagship of the United States Pacific Fleet): in drydock with Cassin and Downes, hit by one bomb and debris from USS Cassin; remained in service. 9 dead.
  • Tennessee: hit by two bombs; returned to service February 1942. 5 dead.
  • Maryland: hit by two bombs; returned to service February 1942. 4 dead (including floatplane pilot shot down).
Ex-battleship (target/AA training ship)
  • Utah: hit by two torpedoes, capsized; total loss. 64 dead.

USS Arizona was a Pennsylvania-class battleship built for and by the United States Navy in the mid-1910s. Named in honor of the 48th state's recent admission into the union, the ship was the second and last of the Pennsylvania class of "super-dreadnought" battleships. Although commissioned in 1916, the ship remained stateside during World War I. Shortly after the end of the war, Arizona was one of a number of American ships that briefly escorted President Woodrow Wilson to the Paris Peace Conference. The ship was sent to Turkey in 1919 at the beginning of the Greco-Turkish War to represent American interests for several months. Several years later, she was transferred to the Pacific Fleet and remained there for the rest of her career.

Arizona_(BB39)_Port_Bow,_Underway_-_NARA_-_5900075_-_1930.jpg

Aside from a comprehensive modernization in 1929–1931, Arizona was regularly used for training exercises between the wars, including the annual Fleet Problems (training exercises). When an earthquake struck Long Beach, California, on 10 March 1933, the Arizona's crew provided aid to the survivors. In July 1934, the ship was featured in a James Cagney film, Here Comes the Navy, about the romantic troubles of a sailor. In April 1940, she and the rest of the Pacific Fleet were transferred from California to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as a deterrent to Japanese imperialism.

USS_Arizona_2.png

During the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941, Arizona was bombed. After a bomb detonated in a powder magazine, the battleship exploded violently and sank, with the loss of 1,177 officers and crewmen. Unlike many of the other ships sunk or damaged that day, Arizona was irreparably damaged by the force of the magazine explosion, though the Navy removed parts of the ship for reuse. The wreck still lies at the bottom of Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial, dedicated on 30 May 1962 to all those who died during the attack, straddles but does not touch the ship's hull.

USS_Arizona_Memorial_(aerial_view).jpg


USS Oklahoma (BB-37) was a Nevada-class battleship built by the New York Shipbuilding Corporation for the United States Navy in 1910, notable for being the first American class of oil-burning dreadnoughts.

USS_Oklahoma_BB-37.jpg

Commissioned in 1916, Oklahoma served in World War I as a part of Battleship Division 6, protecting Allied convoys on their way across the Atlantic. After the war, she served in both the United States Battle Fleet and Scouting Fleet. Oklahoma was modernized between 1927 and 1929. In 1936, she rescued American citizens and refugees from the Spanish Civil War. On returning to the West Coast in August of the same year, Oklahoma spent the rest of her service in the Pacific.

NASPH_^118506-_19_March_1943._USS_Oklahoma-_Salvage._Aerial_view_toward_shore_with_ship_in_90_...jpg

On 7 December 1941, Oklahoma was sunk by several torpedoes during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Torpedoes from torpedo bomber airplanes hit the Oklahoma's hull and the ship capsized. Survivors jumped off the ship 50 feet (15 m) into burning hot water or crawled across mooring lines that connected Oklahoma and Maryland. Some sailors inside escaped when rescuers drilled holes and opened hatches to rescue them. A total of 429 crew died when she capsized and sank in Battleship Row. In 1943, Oklahoma was righted and salvaged. Unlike most of the other battleships that were recovered following Pearl Harbor, Oklahoma was too damaged to return to duty. Her wreck was eventually stripped of her remaining armament and superstructure before being sold for scrap in 1946. The hulk sank in a storm in 1947, while being towed from Oahu, Hawaii, to a breakers yard in San Francisco Bay.


USS West Virginia (BB-48), a Colorado-class battleship, was the second United States Navy ship named in honor of the country's 35th state. She was laid down on 12 April 1920, at Newport News, Virginia, launched on 19 November 1921, and commissioned on 1 December 1923. She was sponsored by Alice Wright Mann, daughter of noted West Virginian T. Mann, and her first captain was Thomas J. Senn. After her shakedown and crew training were finished, she was overhauled at Hampton Roads, and later ran aground in Lynnhaven Channel.

Uss_west_virginia_bb.jpg

Following repairs, she participated in exercises and engineering and gunnery courses, winning four medals in the latter. She participated in other fleet tactical development operations until 1939. In 1940, she was transferred to Pearl Harbor, to guard against potential Japanese attack, and was sunk by six torpedoes and two bombs during the attack on Pearl Harbor. On 17 May 1942, she was salvaged from the seabed by draining the water from her hull.

Attack_on_Pearl_Harbor_Japanese_planes_view.jpg
A view of the attack on Pearl Harbor from a Japanese plane with the torpedo explosion of the USS West Virginia in the center.

USS_West_Virginia2.jpg
Sailors in a motor launch rescue a man overboard alongside the burning West Virginia during, or shortly after, the Japanese air raid on Pearl Harbor.

After repairs in Pearl Harbor, she sailed to the Puget Sound Navy Yard. There she received an extensive refit, including the replacement of her 5-inch (127 mm)/25 caliber anti-aircraft guns and single-purpose 5-inch/51 caliber guns with dual-purpose 5-inch/38 caliber anti-aircraft guns. She left Puget Sound in July 1944, for Leyte Gulf.

She bombarded Leyte in November 1944, becoming part of a successful American plan to destroy the portion of the Japanese fleet trying to sail through the Surigao Strait, and later attacked Iwo Jima and Okinawa. At the end of the Pacific War she entered Tokyo Bay, for the Japanese surrender, and became part of Operation Magic Carpet, making three runs to Hawaii to transport veterans home. She was deactivated on 9 January 1947, and laid up at Bremerton, Washington, until sold for scrap on 24 August 1959.


USS California (BB-44), one of two Tennessee-class battleships completed shortly after World War I, was the fifth ship of the United States Navy named in honor of the 31st state. She was the last American battleship built on the West Coast, and the only one of the dreadnought type. She served in the Pacific her entire career, and for twenty years was the flagship of the Pacific Fleet. She was sunk in the attack on Pearl Harbor at her moorings in Battleship Row, but was salvaged and reconstructed. She served again for the remainder of World War II before being decommissioned in 1947 and scrapped in July 1959

USS_California_(BB-44)_-_NH_61483.jpg

Naval_photograph_documenting_the_Japanese_attack_on_Pearl_Harbor,_Hawaii_which_initiated_US_pa...jpg
California sunk in shallow water at Pearl Harbor after the attack.


USS Nevada (BB-36), the second United States Navy ship to be named after the 36th state, was the lead ship of the two Nevada-class battleships. Launched in 1914, Nevada was a leap forward in dreadnought technology; four of her new features would be included on almost every subsequent US battleship: triple gun turrets, oil in place of coal for fuel, geared steam turbines for greater range, and the "all or nothing" armor principle. These features made Nevada, alongside its sister ship Oklahoma, the first US Navy "standard-type" battleships.

1280px-Uss_nevada.jpg

Nevada served in both World Wars. During the last few months of World War I, Nevada was based in Bantry Bay, Ireland, to protect supply convoys that were sailing to and from Great Britain. In World War II, it was one of the battleships trapped when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. Nevada was the only battleship to get underway during the attack, making the ship "the only bright spot in an otherwise dismal and depressing morning" for the United States. Still, it was hit by one torpedo and at least six bombs while steaming away from Battleship Row, forcing the crew to beach the stricken ship on a coral ledge. The ship continued to flood and eventually slid off the ledge and sunk to the harbor floor. Nevada was subsequently salvaged and modernized at Puget Sound Navy Yard, allowing it to serve as a convoy escort in the Atlantic and as a fire-support ship in five amphibious assaults (the invasions of Attu, Normandy, Southern France, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa).

USS_Nevada_temporarily_beached_on_hospital_point_925AM_NARA-80-G-19940.jpg
USS Nevada beached and burning as a result of damage sustained during the attack on Pearl Harbor

At the end of World War II, the Navy decided that Nevada was too old to be retained, so they assigned it to be a target ship in the atomic experiments at Bikini Atoll in July 1946 (Operation Crossroads). The ship was hit by the blast from the first atomic bomb, Able, and was left heavily damaged and radioactive. Unfit for further service, Nevada was decommissioned on 29 August 1946 and sunk for naval gunfire practice on 31 July 1948.


USS Pennsylvania (BB-38) was the lead ship of the Pennsylvania class of United States Navy super-dreadnought battleships. She was the third Navy ship named for the state of Pennsylvania.

1280px-USS_Pennsy_BB-38_1934.jpg

800px-USS_Downes_(DD-375),_USS_Cassin_(DD-372)_and_USS_Pennsylvania_(BB-38)_in_Dry_Dock_No._1_...jpg
Cassin, Downes and Pennsylvania in the aftermath of the attack on Pearl Harbor

She was laid down on 27 October 1913, by the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company, Newport News, Virginia. She was launched on 16 March 1915, sponsored by Elizabeth Kolb of Philadelphia, and commissioned on 12 June 1916, with Captain Henry B. Wilson in command.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Arizona_(BB-39)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Oklahoma_(BB-37)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_West_Virginia_(BB-48)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_California_(BB-44)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Nevada_(BB-36)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Pennsylvania_(BB-38)
 

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1942 - SS Ceramic, a British ocean liner, was sunk by a German submarine in 1942, leaving only one survivor from the 656 people aboard.


SS Ceramic was a British ocean liner built in Belfast for White Star Line in 1912–13 and operated on the LiverpoolAustralia route. Ceramic was the largest ship serving the route until P&O introduced RMS Mooltan in 1923. In 1934 Shaw, Savill & Albion Line took over White Star's Australia route and acquired Ceramic. The liner served as a troopship in both World Wars. She was sunk by a German submarine in 1942, leaving only one survivor from the 656 people aboard.

SS_Ceramic_(1913).jpg

Building
Harland and Wolff built Ceramic in Belfast, launching her on 11 December 1912 and completing her in 1913. She was delivered on 5 July and her total cost was £436,000.

Ceramic had two triple expansion engines, each with one high pressure, one medium pressure and two low pressure cylinders. Exhaust steam from the two engines' low pressure cylinders drove a single low-pressure steam turbine. Ceramic was propelled by three screws: the middle one driven by the low-pressure turbine and the port and starboard ones each driven by one of the reciprocating engines.

Ceramic had four decks and eight holds, and in her original configuration 38% of her cargo capacity was refrigerated.

SS_CERAMIC_departing_the_White_Star_Line_wharf_at_Millers_Point,_with_crowds_and_streamers,_19...jpg

White Star service
Ceramic's maiden voyage began on 24 July 1913 when she left Liverpool for Australia. At the time she was the largest liner on the route between the two countries. In 1914 she was requisitioned for the First Australian Imperial Force as the troopship HMAT (His Majesty's Australian Transport) Ceramic, with the pennant number A40.

She was armed with two stern-mounted QF 4.7 inch (120mm) naval guns. By 1933 she carried wireless direction finding and echo sounding equipment.

In 1916 Ceramic took the Territorial Army 25th (County of London) Cyclist Battalion to India, leaving Devonport on 3 February and reaching Bombay on 25 February.

Ceramic survived a number of attacks. In May 1916 she was in the Mediterranean carrying 2,500 troops when two torpedoes from an unidentified attacker missed her. On 9 June 1917 she was in the English Channel when again a torpedo from an unidentified attacker missed her. On 21 July in the North Atlantic off the Canary Islands a surfaced U-boat chased her for 40 minutes. Ceramic fired on the U-boat with her 4.7 inch stern guns and outran her attacker.

In May 1917 Ceramic was transferred from Australian control to the UK Shipping Controller under the Liner Requisition Scheme. In 1919 she was returned to White Star Line and in 1920 Harland and Wolff refitted her as a civilian liner.[8] She resumed civilian service on 18 November 1920 when she left Liverpool for Glasgow and Sydney.

Ceramic ran aground on the River Clyde at Glasgow on 12 January 1925. She later was refloated and drydocked.

On 18 December 1930, Ceramic collided with the Pacific Steam Navigation Company's 6,469 GRT cargo ship Laguna in the River Thames near Gravesend. Both ships were slightly damaged.

Ss_ceramic.jpg

Shaw, Savill and Albion peacetime service
In 1934 White Star merged with Cunard. Ceramic was sold to Shaw, Savill and Albion but kept the same route and name. She started her first voyage for her new owner on 25 August, when she left Liverpool for Brisbane. In June 1936 Harland and Wolff's yard in Govan, Glasgow began a refit to modernise Ceramic. Her forward bridge deck was glassed in, a verandah café was added aft. As refitted she had 36 corrugated furnaces with a combined grate area of 725 square feet (67 m2). The furnaces heated six double-ended boilers with a combined heating surface of 30,090 square feet (2,795 m2). The boilers supplied steam at 215 lbf/in2 to Ceramic's two triple-expansion engines. This gave her 1,692 NHP and increased her speed by 1 knot (2 km/h). Ceramic resumed service on 15 August 1936.

Second World War service
When the Second World War broke out on 1 September 1939 Ceramic was at Tenerife on her regular route to South Africa and Australia. She continued as scheduled, unescorted, reaching Australia in October. She left Sydney on 1 November and returned unescorted until she reached Freetown, Sierra Leone, where she joined Convoy SL 13F, becoming the convoy vice-commodore's ship. SL 13F left port on 19 December and reached Liverpool on 3 January 1940.

In February 1940 Ceramic was commissioned as a troopship. She kept her usual route, leaving Liverpool unescorted on 19 February and reaching Sydney on 14 April. She left Sydney for home on 20 April, and after her regular calls in Australia and South Africa she put into Freetown on 2 June. If she was seeking a home-bound convoy she found none, for she sailed the next day unescorted and reached Liverpool on 13 June.

ss_ceramic_1913_1942.jpg

Collision with Testbank
On 20 July 1940 Ceramic left Liverpool with Convoy OB 186. This dispersed at sea two days later as scheduled.

In the South Atlantic in the small hours of 11 August 1940 Bank Line's 5,083 GRT cargo ship Testbank sighted Ceramic about a mile and a half ahead. Under wartime navigation regulations both ships were sailing without navigation lights. Ceramic's lookout failed to see Testbank until the two ships were about 350 yards (320 m) from each other. Both ships took avoiding action but were too late to avoid a collision.

About 0200 hrs Testbank rammed Ceramic's starboard bow. The combined speed of the collision was about 25 knots (46 km/h). It shortened the cargo ship's bow by about 20 feet (6 m) and opened a hole about 40 feet (12 m) wide in the liner's Number One Hold, but both ships stayed afloat. Testbank's cargo was 9,000 tons of iron ore, which would have sunk her very quickly if she had shipped enough water. In the event she was able to return to Cape Town under her own power.

As a precaution, Ceramic's 279 passengers were taken off and transferred by boats to the P&O liner RMS Viceroy of India. Ceramic reached Walvis Bay in South West Africa with the aid of a tug and escorted by a Royal Navy warship. She arrived on 16 August and stayed for emergency repairs until 24 September. She reached Cape Town on 27 September and stayed there for almost £50,000 worth of further repairs. On 10 December Ceramic resumed her passage to Australia, reaching Sydney on 18 January 1941. Apart from a visit to Newcastle, New South Wales Ceramic stayed in Sydney until 21 March, when she left for home. She made her usual calls in South Africa at the end of April and reached Liverpool on 28 May.

Further war service
On 28 or 29 June 1941 Ceramic left Liverpool with Convoy WS 9B, which reached Freetown on 13 July. She continued unescorted via South Africa as usual, reaching Sydney on 4 September, where she stayed until 1 October. She then visited Newcastle and Brisbane before leaving Sydney for home on 12 October. Instead of returning by her usual route Ceramic turned east across the Tasman Sea, called at Wellington, New Zealand 19–27 October and then crossed the Pacific. In November she passed through the Panama Canal and reached Halifax, Nova Scotia. There she joined Convoy HX163, which left on 3 December and reached Liverpool on 19 December.

In January 1942 Ceramic left Liverpool with Convoy ON 59 until it dispersed as scheduled in the North Atlantic. Because of the threat of enemy attack her Atlantic route from Liverpool to Cape Town was extended westwards. She steamed west unescorted across the North Atlantic to Halifax, arriving on 7 February. On 15 February she left Halifax and under naval escort to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, arriving on 5 March. She continued unescorted via South Africa to Australia, reaching Sydney on 29 April.

Again she continued east to return home, this time calling at Lyttelton, New Zealand on 2 June before crossing the Pacific and the passing through Panama Canal. In Cristóbal, Colón she joined Convoy Convoy CW 2/1, which left on 3 July and reached Key West on 12 July, where most of its ships including Ceramic joined Convoy KN 119. This left Key West the same day and reached Hampton Roads, Virginia on 17 July. Ceramic continued unescorted, calling at New York 24–27 July and continuing to Halifax where she joined Convoy HX 201. This left on 2 August and reached Liverpool on 14 August. On this voyage Ceramic carried 372 passengers to Liverpool.

Loss
On 3 November 1942 Ceramic left Liverpool for Australia via Saint Helena and South Africa. She was carrying 377 passengers, 264 crew, 14 DEMS gunners and 12,362 tons of cargo. 244 of the passengers were military or naval, including at least 145 British Army, 30 Royal Navy, 14 Royal Australian Navy and 12 Royal Marines. 30 of her British Army passengers were QAIMNS nursing sisters. The other 133 passengers were fare-paying civilians. 12 were children, the youngest being a one-year-old baby girl. Six were doctors, five of whom were South African. One passenger was Rudolph Dolmetsch (1906–42), classical musician and composer, then serving as Regimental Bandmaster with the Royal Artillery.

Ceramic sailed with Convoy ON 149 until it dispersed as scheduled in the North Atlantic. She then continued unescorted as planned. As on her previous departure in January, she first headed west because of the threat of enemy attack.

At midnight on 6–7 December, in cold weather and rough seas in mid-Atlantic, U-515 hit Ceramic with a single torpedo. These were followed two or three minutes later by two more that hit Ceramic's engine room, stopping her engines and her electric lighting. The liner radioed a distress signal, which was received by the Emerald-class cruiser HMS Enterprise. The crippled liner stayed afloat and her complement abandoned ship in good order, launching about eight lifeboats all full of survivors.


The light cruiser HMS Enterprise received Ceramic's distress signal

About three hours later U-515 fired two more torpedoes, which broke the ship's back and sank her immediately. By now it was very stormy and raining. The heavy sea capsized some of the lifeboats and left many people struggling in the water. Those boats that were not capsized stayed afloat only by constant baling.

Next morning the BdU ordered U-515 to return to the position of the sinking to find out the ship's destination. About noon the U-boat commander, Kapitänleutnant Werner Henke, decided to rescue the Ceramic's skipper. In heavy seas, he sighted one of the lifeboats and its occupants waved to him. The storm was now almost Force 10 and almost swamping U-515's conning tower, so Henke ordered his crew to make do with the first survivor they could find. This turned out to be Sapper Eric Munday of the Royal Engineers, whom they rescued from the water and took prisoner aboard the submarine.

No other occupants of the lifeboats survived. The storm was too severe for neutral rescue ships from São Miguel Island in the Azores to put to sea. On 9 December the Portuguese Douro-class destroyer NRP Dão was sent to search for survivors, but found none.

Munday was kept prisoner aboard U-515 for a month, including Christmas and New Year, until she completed her patrol. When she returned to Lorient, Brittany on 6 January 1943 he was landed at Keroman Submarine Base and sent to Stalag VIII-B in Upper Silesia, where he remained a prisoner of war until 1945.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Ceramic
https://flic.kr/p/63gRZ2
 

Uwek

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
7 December 1942 – battleship USS New Jersey launched
exactly one year later 7 December 1942 - battleship USS Wisconsin launched, Both Iowa-class battleships



USS New Jersey (BB-62) ("Big J" or "Black Dragon") is an Iowa-class battleship, and was the second ship of the United States Navy to be named after the US state of New Jersey. New Jersey earned more battle stars for combat actions than the other three completed Iowa-class battleships, and was the only US battleship providing gunfire support during the Vietnam War.

New_Jesery_Mothballed_(1948).jpg
New Jersey photographed shortly after her 1948 decommissioning. The "igloo"-like domes on the ship were placed over her anti-aircraft guns as protection from the elements.

During World War II, New Jersey shelled targets on Guam and Okinawa, and screened aircraft carriers conducting raids in the Marshall Islands. During the Korean War, she was involved in raids up and down the North Korean coast, after which she was decommissioned into the United States Navy reserve fleets, better known as the "mothball fleet". She was briefly reactivated in 1968 and sent to Vietnam to support US troops before returning to the mothball fleet in 1969. Reactivated once more in the 1980s as part of the 600-ship Navy program, New Jersey was modernized to carry missiles and recommissioned for service. In 1983, she participated in US operations during the Lebanese Civil War.

New Jersey was decommissioned for the last time in 1991 (after serving a total of 21 years in the active fleet), having earned a Navy Unit Commendation for service in Vietnam and 19 battle and campaign stars for combat operations during World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Lebanese Civil War, and service in the Persian Gulf. After a brief retention in the mothball fleet, she was donated to the Home Port Alliance in Camden, New Jersey, and began her career as a museum ship 15 October 2001.

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New Jersey fires all main guns, December 1986

Construction
Main articles: Iowa-class battleship and Armament of the Iowa-class battleship
New Jersey was one of the Iowa-class "fast battleship" designs planned in 1938 by the Preliminary Design Branch at the Bureau of Construction and Repair. She was launched on 7 December 1942 (the first anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor) and commissioned on 23 May 1943. The ship was the second of the Iowa class to be commissioned by the U.S. Navy. The ship was christened at her launching by Carolyn Edison, wife of Governor Charles Edison of New Jersey, himself a former Secretary of the Navy; and commissioned at Philadelphia 23 May 1943, Captain Carl F. Holden in command.

New Jersey's main battery consisted of nine 16"/50 caliber Mark 7 guns in three three-gun turrets, which could fire 2,700-pound (1,225 kg) armor-piercing shells some 23 miles (37 km). Her secondary battery consisted of twenty 5"/38 caliber gunsmounted in twin-gun dual purpose (DP) turrets, which could hit targets up to 9 miles (14 km) away. With the advent of air power and the need to gain and maintain air superiority came a need to protect the growing fleet of allied aircraft carriers, so New Jersey was fitted with an array of Oerlikon 20 mm and Bofors 40 mm anti-aircraft guns. When reactivated in 1968, New Jersey had her 20 mm and 40 mm AA guns removed and was tailored for use as a heavy bombardment ship. When reactivated in 1982, New Jersey had four twin 5"/38 caliber DP mounts removed. She was outfitted with four Phalanx CIWS mounts for protection against missiles and aircraft, and eight Armored Box Launchers and eight Quad Cell Launchers designed to fire Tomahawk missiles and Harpoon missiles, respectively.

Unlike the other Iowa-class battleships, New Jersey was named by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to repay a political debt, to then-New Jersey Governor Charles Edison. During his time in the Navy department, Edison pushed to build the Iowas, and to build one at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, which secured votes for Roosevelt in Pennsylvania and New Jersey in the 1940 presidential election.

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The New Jersey at her berth in Camden at night, Sept 2010.


USS Wisconsin (BB-64) is an Iowa-class battleship, the second ship of the United States Navy to be named in honor of the U.S. state of Wisconsin. She was built at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and launched on 7 December 1943 (the second anniversary of the Pearl Harbor raid), sponsored by the wife of Governor Walter Goodland of Wisconsin.

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USS Wisconsin at sea, c. 1990

During her career, Wisconsin served in the Pacific Theater of World War II, where she shelled Japanese fortifications and screened United States aircraft carriers as they conducted air raids against enemy positions. During the Korean War, Wisconsin shelled North Korean targets in support of United Nations and South Korean ground operations, after which she was decommissioned. She was reactivated on 1 August 1986; after a modernization program, she participated in Operation Desert Storm in January and February 1991.

Wisconsin was last decommissioned in September 1991 after a total of 14 years of active service in the fleet, and having earned a total of six battle stars for service in World War II and Korea, as well as a Navy Unit Commendation for service during the January/February 1991 Gulf War. She currently functions as a museum ship operated by Nauticus, The National Maritime Center in Norfolk, Virginia. Wisconsin was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register (NVR) 17 March 2006, and was donated for permanent use as a museum ship. On 15 April 2010, the City of Norfolk officially took over ownership of the ship.


Museum ship (1992–present)

1280px-USS_Wisconsin_(BB-64)_decommissioning.jpg
Crewmembers man the rails aboard Wisconsin during her decommissioning ceremony

With the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s and the absence of a perceived threat to the United States came drastic cuts in the defense budget. The high cost of maintaining and operating battleships as part of the United States Navy's active fleet became uneconomical; as a result, Wisconsin was decommissioned on 30 September 1991 after 14 total years of active service, and joined the Reserve Fleet at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard. She was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register (NVR) on 12 January 1995, then on 15 October 1996, she was moved to the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, and on 12 February 1998, she was restored to the Naval Vessel Register. On 7 December 2000, the battleship was towed from Portsmouth, Virginia and berthed adjacent to Nauticus, The National Maritime Center in Norfolk. On 16 April 2001 the battleship's weather decks were opened to the public by the Hampton Roads Naval Museum, a U.S. Navy museum charged with Wisconsin's interpretation and public visitation. The ship was still owned by the Navy and was considered part of the mothball fleet.


USS Wisconsin docked in Norfolk, Virginia

Wisconsin was named (along with Iowa) as one of two US Navy battleships to be maintained in the United States Navy reserve fleets in accordance with the National Defense Authorization Act of 1996 as shore bombardment vessels. However, Wisconsin was then over 60 years old and would have required extensive modernization to return to the fleet since most of her technology dated back to World War II, and the missile and electronic warfare equipment added to the battleship during her 1988–89 modernization were considered obsolete. Furthermore, during the 1991 Gulf War, she was said to be hindered by Iraqi naval mines, and reports on the Internet suggest that the majority of the shore bombardments were successfully carried out by US Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigates and their 3 in (76 mm) guns. In addition, the cost of modernizing the battleships was estimated to be around $500 million for reactivation and $1.5 billion for a full modernization program.

USS_Wisconsin.jpg
USS Wisconsin at her berth in Norfolk in 2007

On 17 March 2006, the Secretary of the Navy exercised his authority to strike Iowa and Wisconsin from the NVR, which cleared the way for both ships to be donated for use as museums; however, the United States Congress remained "deeply concerned" over the loss of naval surface gunfire support that the battleships provided, and noted that "...navy efforts to improve upon, much less replace, this capability have been highly problematic." Partially as a consequence, Congress passed Pub.L. 109–163, the National Defense Authorization Act 2006, requiring that the battleships be kept and maintained in a state of readiness should they ever be needed again. Congress had ordered that the following measures be implemented to ensure that Wisconsin could be returned to active duty if needed:

  1. She must not be altered in any way that would impair her military utility;
  2. The battleship must be preserved in her present condition through the continued use of cathodic protection, dehumidification systems, and any other preservation methods as needed;
  3. Spare parts and unique equipment such as the 16 in (406 mm) gun barrels and projectiles be preserved in adequate numbers to support Wisconsin, if reactivated;
  4. The Navy must prepare plans for the rapid reactivation of Wisconsin should she be returned to the Navy in the event of a national emergency.
These four conditions closely mirror the original three conditions that the Nation Defense Authorization Act of 1996 laid out for the maintenance of Wisconsin while she was in the Mothball Fleet. It was unlikely that these conditions would impede a plan to turn Wisconsin into a permanent museum ship at her berth in Norfolk.

On 14 December 2009 the US Navy officially transferred Wisconsin to the city of Norfolk, ending the requirement for the ship to be preserved for possible recall to active duty. The US Navy had paid the city of Norfolk $2.8 million between 2000 and 2009 to maintain the ship. A formal ceremony transferring the ship to the city of Norfolk took place on 16 April 2010. Wisconsin was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on 28 March 2012.


The Iowa-class battleships were a class of six fast battleships ordered by the United States Navy in 1939 and 1940. They were initially intended to intercept fast capital ships such as the Japanese Kongō class while also be capable of operating in a traditional battle line. The Iowa class was designed to meet the Second London Naval Treaty's "escalator clause" limit of 45,000-long-ton (45,700 t) standard displacement. Four vessels, Iowa, New Jersey, Missouri, and Wisconsin, were completed; two more, Illinois and Kentucky, were laid down but canceled in 1945 and 1958 respectively, and both hulls were scrapped in 1958–59.

The four Iowa-class ships were the last battleships commissioned in the US Navy. All older US battleships were decommissioned by 1947 and stricken from the Naval Vessel Registry (NVR) by 1963. Between the mid-1940s and the early 1990s, the Iowa-class battleships fought in four major US wars. In the Pacific Theater of World War II, they served primarily as fast escorts for Essex-class aircraft carriers of the Fast Carrier Task Force and also shelled Japanese positions. During the Korean War, the battleships provided naval gunfire support (NGFS) for United Nations forces, and in 1968, New Jersey shelled Viet Cong and Vietnam People's Army forces in the Vietnam War. All four were reactivated and modernized at the direction of Congress in 1981, and armed with missiles during the 1980s, as part of the 600-ship Navy initiative. During Operation Desert Storm in 1991, Missouri and Wisconsin fired missiles and 16-inch (406 mm) guns at Iraqi targets.

Costly to maintain, the battleships were decommissioned during the post-Cold War draw down in the early 1990s. All four were initially removed from the Naval Vessel Register, but the United States Congress compelled the Navy to reinstate two of them on the grounds that existing NGFS would be inadequate for amphibious operations. This resulted in a lengthy debate over whether battleships should have a role in the modern navy. Ultimately, all four ships were stricken from the Naval Vessel Register and released for donation to non-profit organizations. With the transfer of Iowa in 2012, all four are part of non-profit maritime museums across the US.

Unbenannt.JPG




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_New_Jersey_(BB-62)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Wisconsin_(BB-64)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iowa-class_battleship
 

Uwek

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Today in Naval History - Naval / Maritime Events in History
Other Events on 7 December


1696 – Launch of French Mercure, 50 guns (designed and built by Étienne Hubac), at Brest – captured by the English in 1746


1721 - HMS Hind (1711 - 20) wrecked on the Channel Islands top

HMS Hind (1711) was a 20-gun sixth rate launched in 1711 and wrecked in 1721. The ship struck a rock "half a musket shot" off Guernsey castle on 7 December 1721, and 21 hands were lost including the Captain Fuzzard. The loss was attributed to the "ignorance of the pilot". 94 of the ship's company were saved. Amongst those rescued was the ship's surgeon, Mr Forkington, "who was laid up with the gout, but made shift to swim to a rock not far distant, and the cold baths that endangered his life, hath effectively cured his said distemper." The pilot was tried and found guilty, and was sentenced to three years imprisonment and loss of pay.


1775 – Death of Charles Saunders, English admiral and politician (b. 1715)

Admiral Sir Charles Saunders, KB (c. 1715 – 7 December 1775) was a Royal Navy officer. He commanded the fourth-rate HMS Gloucester and led her in action at the Second Battle of Cape Finisterre in October 1747 during the War of the Austrian Succession. After serving as Commander-in-Chief, Mediterranean Fleet, he was appointed Commander-in-Chief, English Channel in charge of the Western Squadron between October 1758 and May 1759). He took command of the fleet tasked with carrying James Wolfe to Quebec in January 1759 and consolidated the dead general's victory after the Battle of the Plains of Abraham in September 1759 by devoting great energy to keeping the British Army, now under the command of Colonel George Townshend, well supplied during the Seven Years' War. He later became Senior Naval Lord and then First Lord of the Admiralty.

800px-Sir_Charles_Saunders2.jpg

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Saunders_(Royal_Navy_officer)


1776 - Fire in Portsmouth Dockyard.

Her Majesty's Naval Base, Portsmouth (HMNB Portsmouth) is one of three operating bases in the United Kingdom for the British Royal Navy (the others being HMNB Clyde and HMNB Devonport). Portsmouth Naval Base is part of the city of Portsmouth; it is located on the eastern shore of Portsmouth Harbour, north of the Solent and the Isle of Wight. Until the early 1970s it was officially known as Portsmouth Royal Dockyard (or HM Dockyard, Portsmouth); the shipbuilding, repair and maintenance element of the base was privatized in the late-1990s/early-2000s.

The base is the oldest in the Royal Navy and it has been an important part of the Senior Service's history and the defence of the British Isles for centuries. At one time it was the largest industrial site in the world. Around the year 2000, the designation HMS Nelson (which until then had been specific to Portsmouth's Naval Barracks in Queen Street) was extended to cover the entire base.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMNB_Portsmouth


1796 - In his Eighth Annual Message to Congress, President George Washington urges Congress to increase naval strength.


1800 - HMS Nile (12), Lt. George Argles, and HMS Lurcher (1781 - 12) captured a 9 ship convoy near St. Gildas.

HMS Lurcher was a 12-gun cutter, originally launched in 1781 as HMS Pigmy. The French captured her in 1781 but the British recaptured her the next year and renamed HMS Lurcher in 1783. She reverted to HMS Pigmy later that year, and was wrecked in 1793. She was wrecked during the night in Bigbury Bay, Devon. When she started to break up Captain A. Pullibank permitted the crew to go ashore via a hawser. Ten of her crew of 60 were lost. The subsequent court martial acquitted her officers and crew of the loss


1810 - HMS Rinaldo (1808 - 10), James Anderson, captured French lugger Maraudeur (14) off Dover.

HMS Rinaldo (1808) was a 10-gun Cherokee-class brig-sloop launched in 1808. She was converted to a packet brig in 1824 and was sold in 1835.


1817 - Death of William Bligh

Vice-Admiral William Bligh FRS (9 September 1754 – 7 December 1817) was an officer of the Royal Navy and a colonial administrator. The Mutiny on the Bounty occurred during his command of HMS Bounty in 1789; after being set adrift in Bounty's launch by the mutineers, Bligh and his loyal men reached Timor, a journey of 3,618 nautical miles (6,701 km; 4,164 mi).

WilliamBligh.jpeg.jpeg

Seventeen years after the Bounty mutiny, on 13 August 1806, he was appointed Governor of New South Wales in Australia, with orders to clean up the corrupt rum trade of the New South Wales Corps. His actions directed against the trade resulted in the so-called Rum Rebellion, during which Bligh was placed under arrest on 26 January 1808 by the New South Wales Corps and deposed from his command, an act which the British Foreign Office later declared to be illegal. He died in Lambeth, London on 7 December 1817.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Bligh


1820 - HMS Ranger, a Atholl class corvette launched

The Atholl-class corvettes were a series of fourteen Royal Navy sailing sixth-rate post ships built to an 1817 design by the Surveyors of the Navy. A further four ships ordered to this design were cancelled.

Non-standard timber were used in the construction of some; for example, the first pair (Atholl and Niemen) were ordered built of larch and Baltic fir respectively, for comparative evaluation of these materials; the three ships the East India Company built,(Alligator, Termagant and Samarang), were built of teak. Nimrod was built of African timber.

HMS_Rattlesnake_(1822).jpg
Rattlesnake by Oswald Walters Brierly, 1853

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atholl-class_corvette


1904 – Comparative fuel trials begin between warships HMS Spiteful and HMS Peterel: Spiteful was the first warship powered solely by fuel oil, and the trials led to the obsolescence of coal in ships of the Royal Navy.

HMS Spiteful was a Spiteful-class torpedo boat destroyer built at Jarrow, England, by Palmers Shipbuilding and Iron Company for the Royal Navy and launched in 1899. Specified to be able to steam at 30 knots, she spent her entire career serving in the seas around the British Isles, and in 1904 became the first warship to be powered solely using fuel oil. In 1913 she was classified as a B-class destroyer. Spiteful was sold and scrapped in 1920.

HMS_Spiteful_under_way.jpg

Fuel oil
In 1904 Spiteful was instrumental in the Royal Navy's adoption of fuel oil as a source of power in place of coal. In July that year the journal Scientific American described her as "the first warship to be so equipped." Her boilers were modified to burn only fuel oil as part of ongoing experiments and, on 7–8 December 1904, "vitally important" comparative trials were carried out near the Isle of Wight with Spiteful's sister ship Peterel burning coal, in which Spiteful performed significantly better. Problems with the production of smoke were surmounted so that using oil produced no more smoke than coal, and it was found that the ship's crew could be reduced, since fewer were required in the boiler rooms. Whereas Peterel required six stokers during the trials, Spiteful required only three boiler-room crew; while Peterel's crew had to dispose of 1.5 tons (1.52 tonnes) of ash and clinker, Spiteful produced no such waste. Further, while Peterel took 1.5 hours to prepare for steaming, Spiteful took 10 minutes. In June 1906 the same journal reported that Spiteful was being used by the Admiralty to train engine-room crews in the operation of oil-burning equipment.

Although the trials of 1904 proved the significant advantages of fuel oil over coal in powering warships, they did not lead to the immediate abandonment of coal as a source of power by the Royal Navy. While Britain's internal supply of coal was plentiful, it had no reserves of oil. William Palmer, who was First Lord of the Admiralty in 1904, regarded a change to oil as "impossible", for reasons of availability. This took time to overcome, but it was achieved through foreign policy and government activity in the oil market, beginning with the Royal Commission on Fuel and Engines of 1912, promoted by Winston Churchill, who by then was First Lord of the Admiralty. The Navy committed itself to change in the same year, when all of the ships that it set out to procure were designed to use fuel oil

HMS Peterel was one of two Spiteful-class destroyers to serve with the Royal Navy. She was built by Palmers, was 215 feet long and the 6,200 H.P. produced by her Reed boilers gave her a top speed of 30 knots. She was armed, as was standard, with a twelve pounder and two torpedo tubes. She served in home waters throughout the Great War and was sold off in 1919.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Spiteful_(1899)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Peterel_(1899)


1944 - The 7th Fleet forces land the 77th Army Infantry Division on the shore of Ormoc Bay. Kamikazes attack the Task Force, damaging several U.S. Navy ships. USS Ward (APD-16) is scuttled after being hit by a kamikaze.

USS Ward (DD-139) was a 1,247-long-ton (1,267 t) Wickes-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War I, later APD-16 (see High speed transport) in World War II. She fired the first American shot in World War II, when she engaged a Japanese submarine before the attack on Pearl Harbor, and successfully sank her opponent.

USS_Ward_(DD-139).jpg

Fate
As the Pacific War moved closer to Japan, Ward was assigned to assist with operations to recover the Philippine Islands. On 17 October 1944, she put troops ashore on Dinagat Island during the opening phase of the Leyte invasion. After spending the rest of October and November escorting ships to and from Leyte, in early December, Ward transported Army personnel during the landings at Ormoc Bay, Leyte. On the morning of 7 December, three years to the day after she fired the opening shot of the US involvement in the war, while patrolling off the invasion area, she came under attack by several Japanese kamikazes. One bomber hit her hull amidships, bringing her to a dead stop. When the resulting fires could not be controlled, Ward's crew was ordered to abandon ship, and she was sunk by gunfire from O'Brien, whose commanding officer, William W. Outerbridge, had been in command of Ward during her action off Pearl Harbor three years before.

In early December 2017, Ward's wreckage was located by RV Petrel in 686 ft (209 m) of water.

USS_Ward_(DD-139)_afire.jpg
Ward, after being hit by a kamikaze

In the movie Tora! Tora! Tora!, Ward was portrayed by USS Finch.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Ward_(DD-139)


1944 - USS Mahan: Sank after three kamikaze hits off Leyte on 7 December 1944.

USS Mahan (DD-364) was the lead ship of the United States Navy's Mahan-class destroyers. The ship was named for Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan, a 19th-century naval historian and strategic theorist. Her design ushered in major advances over traditional destroyers. Among them were a third set of quadruple torpedo tubes, protective gun shelters, and emergency diesel generators. Along with a steam propulsion system that was simpler and more efficient to operate.

USSMahanDD364.jpg

Mahan began her service in 1936. She was first assigned to the US Atlantic Fleet and then transferred to Pearl Harbor in 1937. When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941, Mahan was at sea with Task Force 12. The task force's mission to Midway Island was aborted to participate in the post-attack search for the enemy strike force. Unable to locate it, the task force returned to Pearl Harbor.

Early in World War II, Mahan took part in raids on the Marshall and Gilbert Islands. In the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, Admirals Chester Nimitz and William Halsey commended the destroyer group (of which Mahan was a member) for a stellar effort in screening the aircraft carriers Hornet and Enterprise against heavy odds. During the New Guinea campaign to take the northeast coast from the Japanese, Mahan was engaged in the amphibious landings at Salamaua, Lae, and Finschhafen. She participated in landings at Arawe and Borgen Bay (near Cape Gloucester), New Britain, and provided support for the troop landing at Los Negros Island in the Admiralty Islands.

1280px-USS_South_Dakota_(BB-57)_and_two_destroyers_alongside_of_USS_Prometheus_(AR-3),_in_Nove...jpg
South Dakota, Prometheus, Mahan,and Lamson after South Dakota-Mahan collision following the Battle of Santa Cruz Islands

Late in the Pacific War, the Japanese kamikaze relentlessly plagued US Naval operations. On 7 December 1944, a group of suicide aircraft overwhelmed and disabled Mahan at Ormoc Bay, Leyte, in the Philippine Islands. On fire and exploding, the ship was abandoned, and a US destroyer sank her with torpedoes and gunfire.

Sinking
In November 1944, bad weather and hostile terrain bogged down the ground campaign to seize Leyte from the Japanese. The chief impediment to retaking Leyte was the Japanese ability to reinforce and resupply its headquarters at Ormoc City, on the west side of Leyte, and the Americans' inability to counter this advantage. Thus, the unavoidable decision was made for an amphibious attack on Ormoc.


Mahan at Mare Island Naval shipyard in 1944, before returning to the South Pacific

On the morning of 7 December 1944, three years to the day after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, troops of the US 77th Infantry Division landed south of Ormoc City. At the same time, Mahan was patrolling the channel between Leyte and Ponson Island.The amphibious strike by the infantry met with little opposition, but nine Japanese bombers and four escort fighters converged on Mahan. In Kamikaze (1997), Raymond Lamont-Brown wrote: "Observers were to record of this, one of the most unusual and devastating of kamikaze assaults of 1944, that the Japanese aircraft used torpedo-launching tactics, but when they had been hit ... they switched to kamikaze attacks, diving on Mahan". During the assault, US Army fighters downed three Japanese aircraft and damaged two more. Mahan shot down four but took three direct kamikaze hits, as David Sears observed in At War With the Wind (2008), "... the most calamitous [being] a direct hit to the superstructure near the No. 2 gun."

Exploding and awash in flames, Mahan was turned by Commander E. G. Campbell toward the picket line in a last hope to save her before issuing the order to abandon ship. The destroyers Lamson and Walke rescued the survivors; one officer and five men were missing, and thirteen seriously wounded (including burns). A US destroyer sank Mahan with torpedoes and gunfire because she was not salvageable.

Mahan’s captain praised the performance of his crew during the ordeal. He described their response as disciplined and courageous.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Mahan_(DD-364)
 
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