Information

USS Richmond CL-9 - History


USS Richmond CL-9

Richmond III

(CL-9: dp. 7,050, 1. 555'6"; b. 55'4", dr 20'10", s. 34.7 k.
cpl. 512; a. 12 6", 4 3", 2 3-pdrs., 6 21" tt; cl. Omaha)

The third Richmond (CL-9) was laid down on 16 February 1920 by William Cramp & Sons, Philadelphia, Pa.; launched

29 September 1921, sponsored by Miss Elizabeth S. Scott; and commissioned on 2 July 1923, Capt. David F. Boyd in command.

On completion of a 3-month shakedown cruise to Europe Afriea, and South America, Richmond underwent post-shakedown availability and in December departed Norfolk for New Orleans. There, at the end of 1923, she became flagship of the Seouting Force.

In early January 1924, she got underway to participate in Fleet Problem III which tested Caribbean defenses and transit facilities of the Panama Canal. On the 19th, she arrived off Vera Cruz, rescued survivors of Tacoma, wrecked on Blanquilla Reef, then proceeded to Tampico to stand by as political tension rose. On the 26th she headed for Galveston, only to return to Mexico on 3 February to evacuate refugees from Puerto Mexico and transport them to Vera Cruz. On the 17th she headed east and joined in exercises off Puerto Rico.

In May Richmond returned briefly to New Orleans, then steamed for the northeast coast and further exercises. Toward the end of July she departed Newport, R.I., for duty as a station ship along the route of Army planes making a roundthe-world flight then, from September through December, she underwent overhaul at the New York Navy Yard.

In January 1925, Richmond, flagship of Light Cruiser Divisions, U.S. Scouting Fleet, again participated in Caribbean exercises. In Februarv she transited the Panama Canal and during March trained off the California coast. In April, she steamed to Hawaii for joint Army-Navy maneuvers, after which she joined the Battle Fleet for a good will cruise to Australia and New Zealand.

Returning to Norfolk on 23 November, Richmond operated off the eastern seaboard and in the Caribbean through 1926. On 1 February 1927, she again transited the Panama Canal conducted exercises in Hawaiian waters, then continued on to China, arriving at Shanghai on 3 April. She remained on the China Station for a year, with only infrequent diversions to the Philippines for repairs and exercises. On 14 April 1928, she

sailed eastward and less than 3 months later departed San Pedro, Calif., for Corinto, Niearagua with a Navy Battalion embarked. On 25 July she retransite] the Panama Canal and for the next 6 years operated off the New England and midAtlantic coasts and in the Caribbean with occasional interruptions for fleet problems and exercises in the eastern Pacific.

From September 1934 to December 1937, Richmond operated off the west eoust as a unit of the Seouting Fleet. After 21 December 1937, she served as flagship of the Submarine Foree, U.S. Fleet; and on 10 May 1938 she headed back to the east coast. On 26 August she returned to San Diego and resumed her previous duty with the Submarine Foree. In the winter of 1939 and the fall of 1940 she returned to the Atlantic for fleet and submarine exercises, and, at the end of December 1940, hauled down the flag of the Submarine Foree.

With the new year, 1941, Richmond shifted to Pearl Harbor; and, from January to June, served as flagship, Seouting Foree. Into October she remained in Hawaiian waters, operating with Cruiser Division 3, then she returned to California and in November began Neutrality Patrols off the west enasts of the Americas. On 7 December she was en route to Valpariso, Chile

Reealled from her original mission, she took up patrol off Panama and in 1942 commenced escorting reinforcement eonvoys to the Galapagos and Soeiety Islands. Later returning to patrols from Panama to Chile, she put into San Francisco for overhaul in December and in January 1943 sailed for the Aleutians

Richmond arrived at Unalaska on 28 January 1943. On 3 February she became flagship of TG 16.6, a ermser-destroyer task group assigned to defend the approaches to recently oeeupied Amehitka. On the 10th, she underwent her first enemy air raid and on the 18th she participated in the initial bombardment of Holtz Bay and Chichagof Harbor, Attu.

The force then resumed patrols to enforce the blockade of enemy installations on Attu and Kiska. In March the Japanese

decided to run the blockade and on the 22d dispatched a force of two heavy cruisers, two light cruisers, four destroyers, and three transports from Paramushiro. TG 16.6, one light cruiser, one heavy cruiser, and four destroyers, intercepted the Japanese on the 26th approximately 180 miles west of Attu and 100 miles south of the Komandorski Islands.

The Japanese sent the transports and one destroyer on, then turned to meet Richmond's force. At 0840, the Battle of the Komandorski Islands began.

Initiallv firing on Richmond, the Japanese soon concentrated on Salt Lake City, the only American ship with the firing range to reach them. In the running, retiring action which ensued and lasted until shortly after noon, Salt Lake City went dead in the water, but continued firing. Richmond went to her aid as the American destroyers closed the Japanese for a torpedo attack. The enemy, however, low on fuel and ammunition did not press their advantage. Changing course, they headed west, pursued by the American destroyers. Salt Lake City regained power after 4 minutes and Richmond joined the destroyers, but the action was broken off as the Japanese outdistanced TG 16.6.

The transports sent ahead by the Japanese turned back for the Kuriles before reaching Attu. TG 16.6 had sueeeeded in its mission. In May a week-long struggle resulted in the reoccupation of Attu by Ameriean forces.

In August, Kiska became the target; and Richmond joined in the preinvasion bombardment. The landings took place on the 15th and met no resistance. The Japanese had pulled out undetected, before the end of July.

On 24 August, Richmond departed the Aleutians, underwent overhaul at Mare Island; then returned to Kiska. Through the remainder of the year, she conducted patrols to the west of the outer Aleutians. On 4 February 1944, she began bombardment missions in the Kuriles which continued, alternated with antishipping sweeps, for the remainder of World War II.

With the end of hostilities, Richmond covered the ocoupation of northern Japan. On 14 September she departed Ominato for Pearl Harbor, whence she was routed on to Philadelphia for inactivation. Decommissioned on 21 December 1945, Richmond was struck from the Navy list on 21 January 1946 and was sold on 18 December 1946 to the Patapseo Serap Co., Bethlehem, Pa.

Richmond (CL-9) earned two battle stars during World War II.


Richmond was launched on 26 January 1860 by the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia. Commanded by Captain D. N. Ingraham, the ship departed Virginia 13 October 1860 for the Mediterranean. Upon her return to New York City 3 July 1861, the nation had already been plunged into civil war so she was immediately readied for sea. Her first war service began 31 July 1861 when she sailed for Kingston, Jamaica to search for the elusive Confederate raider Sumter commanded by Raphael Semmes. Leaving Trinidad on 5 September, Richmond cruised along the southern coast of Cuba and around Cape San Antonio. Semmes, however, reached New Orleans, Louisiana and, by 22 August, Richmond was at Kingston taking on coal again. Departing 25 August, Richmond arrived at Key West on 2 September en route north to join the Gulf Blockading Squadron.

After cruising before Fort Pickens, Richmond was ordered to the Head of the Passes at the mouth of the Mississippi River where she patrolled the river's mouth to maintain the blockade. Richmond's captain became commander of a small flotilla, which included the sloop of war, USS Preble, and the despatch vessel, USS Water Witch. The ships were taken across the bar at the Head of the Passes during the first week of October.

In the early morning darkness of the 12th, the Confederate ram Manassas and three armed steamers of Commodore Hollins's Mosquito Fleet attacked Richmond and her consorts in an attempt to break the blockade in what became the Battle of the Head of Passes. Steaming under cover of darkness, the Confederate ships took the Union squadron by surprise. Richmond was taking on coal from the schooner, Joseph N. Toone, when Manassas rammed Richmond tearing a hole in the sloop's side. Passing aft, the ram tried but failed to hit Richmond again before disappearing astern. Richmond ' s gunners got away one complete broadside from the port battery though, somewhat evening the score.

While USS Vincennes and Preble retired down the southwest Pass, Richmond covered their retreat. Three Confederate fire rafts were then sighted floating down river, and several large steamers were seen astern of them. In attempting to cross the bar, both Vincennes and Richmond grounded and were taken under fire by Confederate gunners afloat and ashore. Fortunately, the Army transport, McClellan, arrived with long range rifled guns on loan from Fort Pickens and halted the second Confederate attack.

Richmond then cruised off the mouth of the river, blockading Confederate forces and aiding Army engineers erecting batteries on the banks of the South and Southwest passages. In mid-November 1861, she returned to Pensacola Bay for temporary repairs. On 22 November Richmond joined the steam sloop of war Niagara and the guns of Fort Pickens to bombard Pensacola Navy Yard, the Confederate defenses at Fort McRee, and the town of Warrington. On the second day of firing Richmond had one man killed and seven wounded when hit twice by shore fire. One shell hit forward, destroying railing and hammock nettings, and one aft on the starboard side glanced under her counter, exploding four feet (1.2 m) underwater, damaging her bottom and causing serious leaks. Richmond retired to Key West, Florida, and stood out from that port 27 November 1861 for repairs at the New York Navy Yard.

Richmond departed New York on 13 February 1862. Richmond joined the West Gulf Blockading Squadron off Ship Island on 5 March as Flag Officer David Farragut prepared to seize New Orleans, Louisiana. Richmond crossed the bar on 24 March with the fleet and began making preparations for battle.

On 16 April, Farragut's fleet moved to a position below Forts Jackson and St. Philip. Mounting over 100 guns, these forts were the principal shore defenses of New Orleans. The Confederates had also gathered a flotilla of requisitioned gunboats and were trying to complete the powerful casemate ram Louisiana as well. They further counted on using fire ships to disrupt the large Union squadron.

Hidden by intervening woods, the Union mortar flotilla under Commander David D. Porter began a six-day bombardment of the Confederate forts on 18 April 1862. The Confederates began sending fire rafts downstream, and Richmond reported dodging one in the early morning of 21 April which "passed between us and the Hartford, the great flames shooting as high as the masts." On 24 April Farragut's fleet ran past the forts, engaged and defeated the Confederate flotilla, and continued upriver for about 12 miles (19 km). Though Richmond was hit 17 times above the waterline, her chain armor kept out many rounds and limited her casualties to two killed and three wounded. Richmond landed her Marine detachment at New Orleans to help keep order until General Benjamin Franklin Butler's Army troops arrived.

Richmond helped take possession of military installations at Baton Rouge, Louisiana on 10 May 1862. Four days later she cruised upriver, first to a point 12 miles below the juncture of the Red River, thence off Natchez River and finally to a position below the Confederate stronghold at Vicksburg on 18 June 1862.

Farragut's squadron, with Richmond in company, successfully passed Vicksburg exchanging heavy fire on 28 June 1862 and was present when Farragut's fleet joined with Commodore Charles H. Davis' Western Flotilla above Vicksburg on 1 July 1862. Richmond again suffered two killed and was damaged almost as severely as during the New Orleans campaign. On 15 July 1862 the Confederate casemate ram Arkansas came out of the Yazoo River and ran past the Union Fleet above Vicksburg. Although hotly pursued by Richmond and other ships, the ram escaped to shelter under the Confederate batteries at Vicksburg. Farragut's fleet again raced past Vicksburg and Richmond continued to provide escort for supply steamers and shore bombardment support.

In one of the fiercest engagements of the war, Farragut's squadron attempted to pass the Confederate fortifications at Port Hudson some 15 mils (0.38 mm) upriver from Baton Rouge on 14 March 1863. Only USS Hartford and USS Albatross succeeded in running the gauntlet, the remainder of the fleet having to turn back. Richmond, lashed alongside USS Genesee, found she could make no headway against the strong current as she came under fire from the shore batteries. Her executive officer, Comdr. Andrew B. Cummings, was mortally wounded. Richmond was struck soon afterward by a 42-pounder shell which ruptured her steam lines, filling the engine room and berth deck with live steam. As Genesee was unable to tow Richmond against the current, the two ships reversed course, passing again through heavy shore fire. Attempts by General Nathaniel P. Banks' Union Army troops to take Port Hudson on 27 May were no more successful and Federal forces afloat and ashore settled down for a long siege. Richmond continued to perform exacting duties, occasionally providing guns and their crews for use ashore.

Meanwhile, strenuous efforts to take Vicksburg finally forced that city to surrender to General Grant on 4 July 1863. Five days later, Richmond and other ships below Port Hudson helped Union ground forces to take possession of that last Confederate bastion on the Mississippi.

Richmond departed New Orleans on 30 July 1863 for a much-needed overhaul at New York Navy Yard. On 12 October 1863, she sailed south, calling at Port Royal, South Carolina, and Key West, Florida, before rejoining Admiral Farragut's squadron at New Orleans on 1 November a fortnight later she began blockade duty off Mobile, Alabama.

Richmond was present with Farragut's fleet when the epic naval assault against Mobile Bay was mounted on 5 August 1864. For this attack, Richmond was lashed to the starboard side of USS Port Royal, and proceeded with the fleet across the bar. Fort Morgan opened fire and the action was soon general. Fifteen minutes later as the monitors were preparing to meet the defending Confederate casemate ram Tennessee, USS Tecumseh struck a moored "torpedo" or mine and sank in seconds. Then USS Brooklyn, just ahead of Richmond, backed athwart Richmond's bow in order to clear "a row of suspicious looking buoys." Richmond and Port Royal in turn went hard astern, causing the entire line of wooden ships to fall into disarray. Admiral Farragut in Hartford decided the boldest course through the torpedo fields was the only one possible and gave his famous command "Damn the torpedoes . full speed ahead!" Moving into the bay, Richmond opened fire on the Confederate steamers Selma, Morgan, Gaines, and Tennessee. At the same time the gunboat USS Metacomet, cast off from Hartford, captured Selma. Soon afterward Port Royal was sent after the disabled Gaines.

Tennessee attempted in vain to ram Brooklyn. Capable of only a very small speed, the southern ram was subjected to heavy fire from Hartford and Richmond. Tennessee passed astern toward Fort Morgan as Farragut's fleet proceeded into the bay away from the fort's fire. Tennessee ' s commander, Franklin Buchanan, chose to follow and engaged the entire Union squadron.

Farragut attacked her with his strongest ships. Richmond proceeded in line abreast with Hartford and Brooklyn. For over an hour the Confederate ship was battered and even rammed by Hartford. By mid morning, Buchanan could see that his ship was a floating hulk and was surrounded by much stronger forces. Accordingly, a white flag was raised and the twin-turret monitor USS Chickasaw went alongside. Richmond suffered no casualties in the action and only slight damage.

Fort Morgan still put up determined resistance, however, and Richmond joined the squadron in a steady day and night bombardment. Invested by Union troops ashore, the fort finally capitulated on 23 August.

Richmond continued to operate in Mobile Bay and also in Pensacola Bay for a time before arriving at the Southeast Pass of the Mississippi River on 23 April 1865. That same evening, the Confederate ram Webb dashed down river from the Red River in an attempt to reach the open sea. Successfully passing Union ships at the mouth of the Red River and at New Orleans, Webb ran out of luck some 25 miles (40 km) below New Orleans. Closely pursued by Union gunboats behind her, Webb found Richmond guarding the estuary leading to the Gulf of Mexico. Trapped, Webb was run ashore, set afire, and blown up by her crew.

A total of 33 sailors and marines earned the Medal of Honor while serving aboard Richmond during the Civil War, more than on any other ship. [1] The first medals went to four members of the ship's engineering department for their efforts after an engine room was damaged by shellfire during the 14 March 1863 attack on Port Hudson. The remaining medals went to three marines and twenty-six sailors for their actions at the Battle of Mobile Bay. [2] [3]

  • Second Class Fireman John Hickman
  • First Class Fireman Matthew McClelland
  • First Class Fireman John Rush
  • First Class Fireman Joseph E. Vantine
  • Yeoman Thomas E. Atkinson
  • Quartermaster John Brazell
  • Captain of the Top Robert Brown
  • Master-at-Arms William M. Carr
  • Coxswain James B. Chandler
  • Quartermaster Thomas Cripps
  • Chief Quartermaster Cornelius Cronin
  • Boatswain's Mate Charles Deakin
  • Chief Boatswain's Mate William Densmore
  • Coal Heaver William Doolen
  • Boatswain's Mate Adam Duncan
  • Coxswain Hugh Hamilton
  • Coxswain Thomas Hayes
  • Captain of the Top John H. James
  • Captain of the Top William Jones
  • Sergeant James Martin, II (USMC)
  • Captain of the Top James McIntosh
  • Sergeant Andrew Miller (USMC)
  • Captain of the Top James H. Morgan
  • Captain of the Forecastle George Parks
  • Seaman Hendrick Sharp
  • Coxswain Lebbeus Simkins
  • Captain of the Forecastle James Smith
  • Second Captain of the Top John Smith
  • Coxswain Oloff Smith
  • Ordinary Seaman Walter B. Smith
  • Orderly Sergeant David Sprowle (USMC)
  • Coxswain Alexander H. Truett
  • Quartermaster William Wells

Richmond departed New Orleans on 27 June, arrived at the Boston Navy Yard on 10 July, and was decommissioned there on the 14th. In 1866 she was fitted out with a new set of engines.

Recommissioned at Boston on 11 January 1869, Richmond departed on 22 January for European waters. Arriving at Lisbon on 10 February, she called at various Mediterranean ports during the remainder of the year and during 1870 was stationed at Villefranche and Marseilles to protect U.S. citizens potentially endangered by the Franco-Prussian War. After the peace was made at Versailles, Richmond cruised the Mediterranean again. She returned to Philadelphia on 1 November 1871 and decommissioned there on the 8th.

Selected for service with the West Indies Squadron, Richmond was recommissioned on 18 November 1872 and stood out from Hampton Roads on 31 January 1873. Arriving at Key West 11 February, she surveyed shoals near Jupiter Inlet, then cruised in the West Indies. On 7 April she was at Santiago de Cuba to assist in securing the release of U.S. seamen held by the Spanish. She then called at Havana and Matanzas before returning to Key West at the end of the month.

Ordered to the Pacific in May, Richmond rounded Cape Horn and arrived at San Francisco on 28 November. After repairs, she departed California, 14 January 1874, as flagship of the South Pacific Station. Throughout 1874 and 1875 she cruised the west coast of Latin America. In September 1876 she again doubled Cape Horn and, after cruising off Uruguay and Brazil, reached Hampton Roads on 22 August 1877. On 18 September she was decommissioned for repairs at the Boston Navy Yard.

Recommissioned on 19 November 1878, Richmond's next duty was as flagship of the Asiatic Fleet. Departing Norfolk 11 January 1879, Richmond passed into the Mediterranean and through the Suez Canal, hoisting the flag of Rear Admiral Thomas H. Patterson at Yokohama on 4 July 1879. For four years Richmond cruised among the principal ports of China, Japan, and the Philippines, serving as flagship until 19 December 1883 when Trenton relieved her. While at Shanghai on 17 November 1879, Landsman Thomas Mitchell rescued a shipmate from drowning, for which he was later awarded the Medal of Honor. [4] Receiving a new crew at Panama in September 1880, Richmond remained on station until departing Hong Kong for the United States on 9 April 1884. Again transiting the Suez Canal, Richmond reached New York on 22 August and was decommissioned for repairs.

Completely overhauled, Richmond was recommissioned at New York on 20 January 1887 for duty on the North Atlantic Station. Into 1888 she cruised from Halifax to Trinidad. On 27 June 1888 she was detached for foreign service.

Departing Norfolk on 2 January 1889, Richmond was assigned to the South Atlantic Station. Again serving as squadron flagship, she cruised off Uruguay and Brazil for over a year, returning to Hampton Roads on 28 June 1890. On 7 October, she arrived at Newport, Rhode Island, where she served as a training ship until 1893. The following year she steamed to Philadelphia served there as a receiving ship until 1900 then remained moored at League Island until ordered to Norfolk in 1903. At Norfolk, she served as an auxiliary to the receiving ship USS Franklin until after the end of World War I.

Richmond was struck from the Navy list in June 1919 and sold to Joseph Hyman & Sons, Philadelphia, on 23 July. She was delivered to that firm on 6 August for breaking up. Beached at Eastport, Maine and burned to recover valuable metal sometime in the 1st half of 1920. [5]


CL - USS Richmond (CL-9)

This post has not been translated to English yet. Please use the TRANSLATE button above to see machine translation of this post.

třída: Omaha
loděnice: William Cramp & Sons Ship & Engine Building Co.,Philadelphia,Pennsylvania
stavba zahájena: 16 února 1920
spuštěna na vodu: 29 září 1921
převzata do služby: 2 července 1923

původní označení: CS 9
překlasifikována na CL: 17 července 1920

vyřazena: 21 prosince 1945
odepsána: 21 ledna 1946
prodána na šrot: 18 prosince 1946

délka: 555.5' 169,31 m
šířka: 55.3' 16,85 m
ponor: 13.5' 4,11 m

Výtlak
standartní: 7 050 tun
maximální: 9 150 tun

Pohon
kotle: 12 Yarrow
turbíny: 4 Westinghouse
výkon: 90 000 shp
dosah
..9 000 n.mil / 15 uzlů
..4 970 n.mil / 20 uzlů ( WW II )
..7 080 n.mil / 15 uzlů ( WW II )
rychlost: 34-34.92 uzlů

Pancéřování
boky: 3" 76 mm
paluba: 1.5" 38,1 mm
velitelská věž: 1.25" 31,75 mm

Výzbroj
10 x 152 mm 6"/53 ( 2 x II , 6 x I )
8 x 76 mm 3"/50 ( 8 x I )

protiletadlová výzbroj
1942
16 x 28 mm ( 4 x IV )
8 x 20 mm ( 8 x I )
1945
8 x 40 mm ( 4 x II )
14 x 20 mm ( 14 x I )


Our Newsletter

Product Description

USS Richmond CL 9

World War II Cruise Book

Bring the Cruise Book to Life with this Multimedia Presentation

This CD will Exceed your Expectations

A great part of Naval history.

You would be purchasing an exact copy of the USS Richmond cruise book during World War II. Each page has been placed on a CD for years of enjoyable computer viewing. The CD comes in a plastic sleeve with a custom label. Every page has been enhanced and is readable. Rare cruise books like this sell for a hundred dollars or more when buying the actual hard copy if you can find one for sale.

This would make a great gift for yourself or someone you know who may have served aboard her. Usually only ONE person in the family has the original book. The CD makes it possible for other family members to have a copy also. You will not be disappointed we guarantee it.

Some of the items in this book are as follows:

  • The Aleutians Campaign
  • Aircraft at Sea and in Port
  • Matsuwa Pounded
  • Captains Inspection
  • Return to Peace
  • Japanese Pilots Point the Way
  • Ominato Occupation
  • Commanding Officers
  • Divisional Group Pictures with names
  • Action Summary

Over 97 photos on 40 pages. 4 pages of detailed description.

Once you view this CD you will know what life was like on this Light Cruiser during World War II.

Additional Bonus:

  • Six minute audio recording of " Sounds of Boot Camp " during the late 50's early 60's.
  • Many Hi-Resolution images of the World War II Memorial in Washington DC.
  • Several additional Official Navy Photos of the USS Richmond from the National Achives not in the cruise book.

Why a CD instead of a hard copy book?

  • The pictures will not be degraded over time.
  • Self contained CD no software to load.
  • Thumbnails, table of contents and index for easy viewing reference.
  • View as a digital flip book or watch a slide show. (You set the timing options)
  • Back ground patriotic music and Navy sounds can be turned on or off.
  • Viewing options are described in the help section.
  • Bookmark your favorite pages.
  • The quality on your screen may be better than a hard copy with the ability to magnify any page.
  • Full page viewing slide show that you control with arrow keys or mouse.
  • Designed to work on a Microsoft platform. (Not Apple or Mac) Will work with Windows 98 or above.

Personal Comment from "Navyboy63"

The cruise book CD is a great inexpensive way of preserving historical family heritage for yourself, children or grand children especially if you or a loved one has served aboard the ship. It is a way to get connected with the past especially if you no longer have the human connection.

If your loved one is still with us, they might consider this to be a priceless gift. Statistics show that only 25-35% of sailors purchased their own cruise book. Many probably wished they would have. It's a nice way to show them that you care about their past and appreciate the sacrifice they and many others made for you and the FREEDOM of our country. Would also be great for school research projects or just self interest in World War II documentation.

We never knew what life was like for a sailor in World War II until we started taking an interest in these great books. We found pictures which we never knew existed of a relative who served on the USS Essex CV 9 during World War II. He passed away at a very young age and we never got a chance to hear many of his stories. Somehow by viewing his cruise book which we never saw until recently has reconnected the family with his legacy and Naval heritage. Even if we did not find the pictures in the cruise book it was a great way to see what life was like for him. We now consider these to be family treasures. His children, grand children and great grand children can always be connected to him in some small way which they can be proud of. This is what motivates and drives us to do the research and development of these great cruise books. I hope you can experience the same thing for your family.


World War II

Recalled from her original mission, she took up patrol off Panama and in 1942 commenced escorting reinforcement convoys to the Galápagos Islands and Society Islands. Later, returning to patrols from Panama to Chile, she put into San Francisco for overhaul in December and in January 1943 sailed for the Aleutians.

Richmond arrived at Unalaska on 28 January 1943. On 3 February, she became flagship of Task Group 16.6 (TG 16.6), a cruiser-destroyer task group assigned to defend the approaches to recently occupied Amchitka. On the 10th, she underwent her first enemy air raid and on the 18th she participated in the initial bombardment of Holtz Bay and Chichagof Harbor, Attu Island.

The force then resumed patrols to enforce the blockade of enemy installations on Attu and Kiska. In March, the Japanese decided to run the blockade and on the 22nd dispatched a force of two heavy cruisers, two light cruisers, four destroyers, and three transports from Paramushiro. TG 16.6, one light cruiser, one heavy cruiser, and four destroyers, intercepted the Japanese on the 26th approximately 180 mi (290 km) west of Attu and 100 mi (160 km) south of the Komandorski Islands.

The Japanese sent the transports and one destroyer on, then turned to meet Richmond ' s force. At 0840, the Battle of the Komandorski Islands began.

Initially firing on Richmond, the Japanese soon concentrated on Salt Lake City, the only American ship with the firing range to reach them. In the running, retiring action which ensued and lasted until shortly after noon, Salt Lake City went dead in the water, but continued firing. Richmond went to her aid as the American destroyers closed the Japanese for a torpedo attack. The enemy, however, low on fuel and ammunition did not press their advantage. Changing course, they headed west, pursued by the American destroyers. Salt Lake City regained power after four minutes and Richmond joined the destroyers, but the action was broken off as the Japanese outdistanced TG 16.6.

The transports sent ahead by the Japanese turned back for the Kuriles before reaching Attu. TG 16.6 had succeeded in its mission. In May, a week-long struggle resulted in the reoccupation of Attu by American forces.

In August, Kiska became the target, and Richmond joined in the preinvasion bombardment. The landings took place on the 15th and met no resistance. The Japanese had pulled out undetected, before the end of July.

On 24 August, Richmond departed the Aleutians underwent overhaul at Mare Island then returned to Kiska. Through the remainder of the year, she conducted patrols to the west of the outer Aleutians. On 4 February 1944, she began bombardment missions in the Kuriles which continued, alternated with antishipping sweeps, for the remainder of World War II.

With the end of hostilities, Richmond covered the occupation of northern Japan. On 14 September 1945, she departed Ominato for Pearl Harbor, where she was routed on to Philadelphia for inactivation. Decommissioned on 21 December, Richmond was struck from the Naval Vessel Register on 21 January 1946, and was sold on 18 December to the Patapsco Scrap Co., Bethlehem, Pa.


Inter-war period

On completion of a three-month shakedown cruise to Europe, Africa, and South America, Richmond underwent post-shakedown availability and in December departed Norfolk for New Orleans. There, at the end of 1923, she became flagship of the Scouting Force. [3]

In early January 1924, she got underway to participate in Fleet Problem III which tested Caribbean defenses and transit facilities of the Panama Canal. On the 19th, she arrived off Veracruz, rescued survivors of Tacoma, wrecked on Blanquilla Reef then proceeded to Tampico to stand by as political tension rose. On the 26th, she headed for Galveston, only to return to Mexico on 3 February to evacuate refugees from Puerto Mexico and transport them to Veracruz. On the 17th, she headed east and joined in exercises off Puerto Rico. [3]

In May, Richmond returned briefly to New Orleans, then steamed for the northeast coast and further exercises. Toward the end of July she departed Newport, R.I., for duty as a station ship along the route of USAAS's first aerial circumnavigation of the world. On 2 August, she attempted to take in tow the Douglas World Cruiser "Boston", downed on the Atlantic Ocean after engine trouble, but the floatplane capsized in rough seas, although the two crew were rescued. [8] Then, from September through December, she underwent overhaul at the New York Navy Yard. [3]

Richmond in 1923 during high speed trials

In January 1925, Richmond, flagship of Light Cruiser Divisions, Scouting Fleet, again participated in Caribbean exercises. In February, she transited the Panama Canal and during March trained off the California coast. In April, she steamed to Hawaii for joint Army-Navy maneuvers, after which she joined the Battle Fleet for a good will cruise to Australia and New Zealand. [3]

Returning to Norfolk on 23 November, Richmond operated off the eastern seaboard and in the Caribbean through 1926. On 1 February 1927, she again transited the Panama Canal conducted exercises in Hawaiian waters then continued on to China, arriving at Shanghai on 3 April. She remained on the China Station for a year, with only infrequent diversions to the Philippines for repairs and exercises. On 14 April 1928, she sailed eastward and less than three months later departed San Pedro, California, for Corinto, Nicaragua with a Navy Battalion embarked. On 25 July, she retransited the Panama Canal and for the next six years operated off the New England and mid-Atlantic coasts and in the Caribbean with occasional interruptions for fleet problems and exercises in the eastern Pacific. [3]

From September 1934 to December 1937, Richmond operated off the west coast as a unit of the Scouting Fleet. On 12 February 1935, she rescued 64 members of the crew of the downed airship USS Macon. [9] After 21 December 1937, she served as flagship of the Submarine Force, and on 10 May 1938, she headed back to the east coast. On 26 August, she returned to San Diego and resumed her previous duty with the Submarine Force. In the winter of 1939 and the fall of 1940, she returned to the Atlantic for fleet and submarine exercises, and, at the end of December 1940, hauled down the flag of the Submarine Force. [3]

With the new year, 1941, Richmond shifted to Pearl Harbor and, from January to June, served as flagship, Scouting Force. Into October, she remained in Hawaiian waters, operating with Cruiser Division 3 (CruDiv 3), then she returned to California and in November began Neutrality Patrols off the west coasts of the Americas. On 7 December, she was en route to Valparaíso, Chile. [3]


USS Richmond K. Turner (CG 20)

USS RICHMOND K. TURNER was the fifth ship in the LEAHY - class of "double-end" guided missile cruisers. USS RICHMOND K. TURNER was last homeported in Pascagoula, Miss., and on August 9, 1998, she was sunk as a target near Puerto Rico.

General Characteristics: Keel laid: January 9, 1961
Launched: April 6, 1963
Commissioned: June 13, 1964
Decommissioned: April 13, 1995
Builder: New York Shipbuilding Corp., Camden, N.J.
Propulsion system: 4 - 1200 psi boilers 2 General Electric geared turbines
Propellers: two
Length: 535 feet (163 meters)
Beam: 53 feet (16.1 meters)
Draft: 26 feet (7.9 meters)
Displacement: approx. 7,800 tons
Speed: 30+ knots
Aircraft: none
Armament: two Mk 141 Harpoon missile launchers, two 20mm Phalanx CIWS, two Mk-10 missile launchers for Standard missiles (ER), Mk 46 torpedoes from two Mk-32 triple mounts, one Mk 16 ASROC missile launcher
Crew: 27 officers and 413 enlisted

This section contains the names of sailors who served aboard USS RICHMOND K. TURNER. It is no official listing but contains the names of sailors who submitted their information.

USS RICHMOND K. TURNER Cruise Books:

USS RICHMOND K. TURNER History:

The keel of the USS RICHMOND K. TURNER was laid on January 9, 1961 by New York Shipbuilding Corp. at Camden, New Jersey. She was one of nine Leahy-class "double-ended" guided missile destroyers. She was launched on April 6, 1963 and commissioned on June 19, 1964 at the Philiadelphia Naval Shipyard, Capt. Douglas C. Plate in command.

Departing the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard August 10, 1964 for her homeport of San Diego, Calif., she touched briefly at Yorktown and Norfolk, Va., and then at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Entering the Pacific via the Panama Canal, she steamed northward toward her homeport, with a call at Acapulco, Mexico. She arrived San Diego September 11.

Following shakedown out of San Diego March 19 - May 7, 1965, RICHMOND K. TURNER prepared for her first deployment to the western Pacific. Departing San Diego June 4, she joined Task Force 77 in the Tonkin Gulf-South China Sea area and served as missile support ship for the attack carriers CORAL SEA (CVA 43), INDEPENDENCE (CV 62), and ORISKANY (CV 34) while they conducted air strike operations in Southeast Asia.

In September, she was relieved of duties as missile support ship and reassigned to the Search and Rescue Destroyer Unit in the Tonkin Gulf. After participating in missions in which eight aviators were rescued through October 8, she departed Subic Bay November 30, and arrived San Diego December 18.

TURNER's subsequent deployments followed in the wake of her first WestPac voyage, with leave, upkeep, overhaul, and type training rounding out her periods in homeport. She stood out of San Diego October 15, 1966, bound a second time for Southeast Asian waters.

Returning to her homeport March 28, 1967, she punctuated her coastal operations with a midshipman training cruise to Pearl Harbor. Departing for her third tour off Vietnam June 10, 1968, she contributed to Fleet readiness in Asian waters until her December 19, return to San Diego. Leave and upkeep extended through January 20, 1969.

TURNER then assumed duty as ASW Schoolship in the southern California operating areas. In February, she conducted a SecNav guest cruise, and March 1, she commenced an extensive updating of her shipboard missile systems at the Naval Station San Diego. She then underwent training and further preparations for her fourth WestPac deployment, which commenced in January 1970.

She arrived in Yokosuka, Japan, March 4, and spent the next two months operating in the Sea of Japan. June found her off the coast of Vietnam, where she remained until late July. Stopping off at Guam and Pearl Harbor, she returned to San Diego in August, arriving on the 12th.

TURNER continued operations out of San Diego until March 22, 1971, when she embarked for Bath, Maine. She arrived at the Bath Iron Works April 27, and was decommissioned May 5, under a Navy wide program to enhance the anti-air warfare capability of major guided missile ships. TURNER was recommissioned at Bath Iron Works on May 17, 1972 as a guided missile cruiser getting the new designation CG 20.

For the next seven months, TURNER engaged in various post modernization trials, exercises, and refresher training along the east coast of the United States and in the Caribbean. She returned to Newport, R.I., November 22, and remained there until January 9, 1973, when she entered Boston Naval Shipyard for a two-month yard period. Leaving Boston in March, TURNER deployed on a UNITAS cruise to South America in 1973, and participated in Operation 200 which included the International Naval Review in New York City on the occasion of the Nation's Bicentennial Celebration on July 4, 1976.

In May 1980 TURNER participate in Boston's OPSAIL 80, in addition to conducting two special operations for which she was awarded a Meritorious Unit Citation. RICHMOND K. TURNER completed four highly successful Mediterranean deployments as part of the U.S. Sixth Fleet, prior to an extensive baseline overhaul at Charleston Naval Shipyard, Charleston, SC from January to December 1982. During this overhaul TURNER received numerous updates which modernized her combat systems suite this included the installation of the Vulcan Phalanx Close In Weapons System for self defense against cruise missiles. After this overhaul TURNER completed two more Mediterranean deployments, one of which included the successful launch of a Harpoon missile during a Gulf of Sidra operation.

TURNER also completed a 1988 deployment to the Persian Gulf and was a participant of Operation Earnest Will.

Upon her return to the United States, TURNER was overhauled in Ingalls Shipyard at Pascagoula, Mississippi,where she received the New Threat Upgrade (NTU) to her Combat Direction System as well as many engineering improvements.

In response to the crisis in the Persian Gulf caused by Iraq's invasion of Kuwait, RICHMOND K. TURNER deployed early as a primary AAW unit in the THEODORE ROOSEVELT (CVN 71) battle group, which arrived in the theater just before hostilities broke out.

During 60 days of operations in the Persian Gulf, TURNER provided protection to four carriers in the CV operating area and served as an advance picket ship in the mine infested waters off Kuwait in the final days of the war. Following the cease fire, TURNER relocated to the Red Sea where she participated in the continuing maritime interception operations in support of U.N. sanctions against Iraq.

Escorting USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT through the Suez Canal in late April '91, TURNER participated in Operation Provide Comfort, the massive relief effort to help tens of thousands of Kurdish refugees who fled the turmoil of Iraq following that country's decisive defeat in the war. During this time RICHMOND K. TURNER became the Anti-Air Warfare Commander for the Aircraft Carrier Striking Force, U.S. Sixth Fleet.

For her operations during this deployment, the Secretary of the Navy awarded RICHMOND K. TURNER the Joint Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy Unit Commendation, the National Defense Medal, and the Southwest Asia Service Medal.

RICHMOND K. TURNER's final years were marked by a final deployment to the Mediterranean as a part of the USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT battle group. She served with distinction as an anti-air warfare commander during Operation Deny Flight over the Former Republic of Yugoslavia and Bosnia.

Prior to her decommissioning on March 31, 1995, TURNER served as the test platform for the Navy's Light-weight Exoatmosheric Projectile (LEAP) Program, firing the first LEAP shot ever and launching the Navy into the future of missile technology.

On August 9, 1998, USS RICHMOND K. TURNER was sunk as a target near Puerto Rico. The SINKEX was condcuted by the USS ENTERPRISE battle group including the USS PHILIPPINE SEA (CG 58), USS THORN (DD 988), USS NICHOLSON (DD 982) and Carrier Air Wing 3.

Admiral Richmond Kelly Turner was born in Portland, Oregon on May 27, 1885. He attended high school in Stockton, CA before his appointment to the U.S. Naval Academy. He graduated with distinction, fifth in a class of 201 in June 1908, and served the two years at sea, then required by law, before being commissioned Ensign in June 1910.

After graduation in 1908, Admiral Turner served consecutively in the USS MILWAUKEE, USS ACTIVE, USS PREBLE, and USS WEST VIRGINIA until June 1912, when he joined the USS STEWART, assuming command a year later. The World War I years found him aboard the battleships USS PENNSYLVANIA, USS MICHIGAN and USS MISSISSIPPI.

After serving as Commanding Officer of USS MERVINE, he reported for flight training at the Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida where he was designated a Naval Aviator on August 30, 1927 at the age of 42. Upon the completion of more than four and one half years of shore duty, Admiral Turner returned to sea Executive Officer of the aircraft carrier USS SARATOGA and subsequently Commanding Officer of the USS ASTORIA.

In October 1940, he became Director of the War Plans Division, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations.

In December 1941, he assumed additional duty as Assistant Chief of Staff of the Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet. On July 19, 1942 he became Commander, Amphibious Force, South Pacific. From that time, he participated in most of the major amphibious engagements of the Pacific. Among Admiral Turner's most noteworthy achievements during the Pacific Campaign were the Guadalcanal-Tulagi invasion, the New Georgia campaign, the Tarawa assault, the occupation of the Marshall Islands and the seizure and occupation of Saipan.

So successful were Admiral Turner's amphibious operations throughout the Pacific theater, that he became known as the "Alligator", the symbol of fast and inexorable amphibious striking power. Besides the Navy Cross, he received the Distinguished Service Medal with three gold stars, the Navy Commendation Ribbon, the World War II Victory Medal, and the Philippine Liberation Ribbon. He was also made a Companion of the Order of the Bath by Great Britain.

Admiral Turner was transferred to the retired list of the Navy in the rank of Admiral on July 1, 1947. He died in Monterey, CA on February 12, 1961, shortly after the death of his wife, the former Miss Harriet Sterling, whom he had married 51 years before.


Indice

Periodo tra le due guerre mondiali Modifica

La nave venne sottoposta ad una crociera di prova di tre mesi in Europa, Africa e Sud America, ed in seguito raggiunse New Orleans, per entrare a far parte della Forza di esplorazione della US Navy come ammiraglia alla fine del 1923. Dopo aver partecipato ad esercitazioni della flotta e recuperato i superstiti della Tacoma, un incrociatore affondato su un'isola dei Caraibi, parteciparono anche all'evacuazione da Puerto Mexico a Veracruz di cittadini statunitensi durante dei tumulti nel 1924.

In maggio dello stesso anno, il Richmond ritornò brevemente a New Orleans, poi partecipò a nuove esercitazioni sulla costa nordorientale. Verso la fine di luglio partì da Newport, Rhode Island, per effettuare servizio di stazione sulla rotta di alcuni aerei dell'Esercito impegnati in una crociera intorno al mondo. Il 2 agosto, tentò di prendere a rimorchio il Douglas World Cruiser "Boston", ammarato nell'Atlantico per problemi ai motori, ma l'idrovolante si capovolse ed affondò nel mare in burrasca, benché entrambi i membri dell'equipaggio vennero recuperati [3] [4] . Poi, da settembre a dicembre, andò ai lavori di raddobbo al New York Navy Yard.

Durante il prosieguo la nave venne utilizzata per vari compiti, come visite di cortesia, addestramento con i Marines, come nave di comando per una flottiglia di sommergibili e come parte della forza di esplorazione della flotta da battaglia.

All'inizio del 1941, il Richmond venne inviato a Pearl Harbor qui, da gennaio a giugno assunse il ruolo di ammiraglia della Scouting Force, la forza di esplorazione. Per ottobre la nave era ancora nella acque hawaiane, operando con la Cruiser Division 3 (CruDiv 3), poi tornò in California ed in novembre iniziò le pattuglie di neutralità sulla costa occidentale delle Americhe. Il 7 dicembre, data dell'attacco a Pearl Harbor, era in rotta per Valparaíso, Cile.

La seconda guerra mondiale Modifica

La nave effettuò pattuglie e scorta ai convogli per tutto il 1942, e a dicembre andò ai lavori di raddobbo a San Francisco. A gennaio 1943 la nave venne inviata ad Unalaska come parte del Task Group 16.6 che aveva la responsabilità della difesa della Aleutine.

La battaglia delle Isole del Commodoro Modifica

In questa veste il Raleigh partecipò alla battaglia delle isole Komandorski, uno dei numerosi scontri navali durante la seconda guerra mondiale, avvenuta il 27 marzo 1943 nel nord dell'Oceano Pacifico, vicino alle isole del Commodoro nell'estremo oriente dell'odierna Russia, e parte della campagna delle isole Aleutine.

Dopo l'invasione da parte giapponese delle isole Aleutine di Attu e Kiska, gli Stati Uniti venuti a conoscenza di un convoglio di rifornimenti giapponesi diretti ad Attu, inviarono una squadra di navi da guerra comandata dal contrammiraglio Charles McMorris per intercettare il convoglio. La squadra statunitense consisteva dell'incrociatore pesante USS Salt Lake City, il vecchio incrociatore leggero USS Richmond che svolgeva il ruolo di ammiraglia del Task Group 16.6 costituito il 3 febbraio 1943 per contrastare le forze giapponesi che avevano occupato le isole, e i cacciatorpediniere Coghlan, Bailey, Dale e Monaghan. L'ammiraglio McMorris era a bordo del Richmond e l'equipaggio del Salt Lake City era per il 70% formato da personale alla prima uscita in mare e la revisione dopo i danni subiti nella Battaglia di Capo Speranza [5] .

La mattina del 27 marzo, il convoglio giapponese fu intercettato dalla piccola squadra navale americana nelle acque a sud dell'arcipelago sovietico delle Isole del Commodoro, a circa 290 km a ovest di Attu e a 160 km a sud delle Isole del Commodoro [5] le navi del task group 16.6 (denominato Mike) erano disposte a distanza di sei miglia per sfruttare al meglio le capacità dei radar, in base agli ordini operativi dell'ammiraglio Kinkaid, e in rotta 40° [5] ad effettuare la scoperta furono il cacciatorpediniere Coghlan e il Richmond disposti come picchetto radar, che rilevarono le navi nipponiche lo scontro cominciò con gli statunitensi disposti in linea di fila singola diretti per 330°, e i giapponesi inizialmente di controbordo su due file, con gli incrociatori pesanti ed uno leggero più vicini agli avversari a circa 9000m ed i cacciatorpediniere e l'altro incrociatore leggero su un'altra linea parallela ed arretrata. Alle 8.40 un proiettile del Richmond centrò il Nachi provocando un incendio seguiti verso le 9.00 da altri che lo danneggiarono gravemente. [6] Il Richmond passò il resto della battaglia cercando di supportare l'azione dei cacciatorpediniere, fino a quando il Salt Lake City rimase immobilizzato da un colpo da 203mm successivamente riuscì a ripartire anche se solo a 15 nodi sparando l'ultima salva della battaglia ed i caccia si erano riuniti alla formazione mentre il Richmond rimase pronto a schermare le altre navi [5] .

Preoccupato dal consumo di nafta e dal timore che consistenti forze nemiche, (anche aeree considerando la vicinanza dell'isola di Amchitka occupata dagli statunitensi) potessero arrivare a sostegno della formazione di McMorris, il viceammiraglio Hosogaya interruppe lo scontro e si ritirò. Intanto le navi cargo giapponesi avevano già invertito la rotta al principio della battaglia: era l'ultimo convoglio di superficie che si era avventurato in quelle acque. Da allora in poi i convogli nipponici furono unicamente composti da sommergibili. [7]

Per contro la formazione statunitense si ritirava col Salt Lake City e il Bailey pesantemente danneggiati il primo aveva sparato 806 proiettili perforanti esaurendone la scorta e poi 26 di esplosivo ad alto potenziale, aveva la sala motori posteriore allagata e i giroscopi fuori uso per cui poteva solo seguire la rotta del resto della formazione, ma aveva sostenuto il confronto con due incrociatori pesanti obbligandoli a mantenersi a distanza, mentre il Richmond aveva sparato solo 271 proiettili da 150mm, muovendosi insieme ai cacciatorpediniere [5] .

Il prosieguo Modifica

Dopo aver partecipato a tutta la campagna delle Aleutine che si concluse con l'occupazione di Kiska ed Attu, nella quale effettuò diverse azioni di bombardamento contro le difese giapponesi in appoggio alle truppe sbarcate, la nave rimase in area per tutto il resto della guerra, effettuando azioni di pattugliamento antisommergibile e partecipando ad alcuni bombardamenti delle isole Curili. Dopo la resa del Giappone, il Raleigh diede copertura all'occupazione del nord del paese. La nave venne radiata dopo la fine della guerra, il 21 dicembre 1945, e venduta per la demolizione il 18 dicembre 1946.


History of Richmond, Virginia

Located along the fall line of the James River, Richmond is the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Although Richmond was incorporated as a town “to be styled the City of Richmond” in 1742, it was not until 1782 that it was incorporated as a city. Plentiful in Revolutionary War history, Richmond served also as the capital of the Confederate States of America during the Civil War. The beginning In 1607, after 10 days of travel up Powhatan’s River (later known as the James River), Captain John Smith and 120 men from Jamestown, Virginia, settled at the river's highest navigable location. Theirs was the first attempt to settle at the Falls of the James. Four years later in 1611, the governor of the new Jamestown colony organized an expedition to sail up the James and settled below the falls in a place they called Henricus. The first hospital in North America was located there, serving also as the home of Pocahontas. Struggles with the indigenous peoples began to simmer and then boil over after the death of Pocahontas in 1617, and her father Chief Powhatan the following year. Widespread Indian attacks during the Powhatan uprising of 1622 destroyed every English settlement along the James River except Jamestown. Led by the more aggressive Chief Opechancanough, the tribe massacred nearly 400 white settlers during a surprise attack in 1644. Two years later, the tribe was forced to sign a treaty that granted the English possession of the land below the Falls of the James. The neighborhoods of Shockoe Bottom, Shockoe Slip, and Church Hill, where St. John's Church had been built the prior year, coalesced into one entity when Richmond was chartered as a town, in 1742. They were governed by the Virginia House of Burgesses, located in Jamestown. Importance during the Revolutionary War Richmond became a center of activity prior to and during the Revolutionary War. Patrick Henry’s famous speech “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death,” was delivered at Richmond’s St. John’s Church and was said to have inspired the House of Burgesses to pass a resolution to deliver Virginia troops to the Revolutionary War in 1775. One year later, the Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Second Continental Congress. In 1780, during the War of Independence, Virginia’s state capital was moved to Richmond from Williamsburg. A year later, Richmond was burned to the ground by British troops during Benedict Arnold’s watch. By 1782, Richmond had recovered and was incorporated as a city. Slave trade center It is believed that between 1800 and 1865, an estimated 300,000 to 350,000 slaves were processed through the Shockoe Bottom slave auction blocks in Richmond, on their way to the Deep South. Shockoe Bottom served also as a burial ground for thousands of Africans whom had not survived the journey or died shortly after their entry into America. In one of the more creative and dangerous escapes by a slave in the mid-1800s, Henry “Box” Brown, with the help of a sympathetic white shoemaker, Samuel Smith, had himself nailed into a two- by three-foot box labeled “dry goods” and was loaded onto a northbound train from Richmond to freedom in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Civil War headquarters With an asset such as the city’s Tredegar Iron Works, Richmond became the capital for the Confederate States of America, in 1861. They served as the largest foundry in the South and the third-largest in antebellum United States. The foundry produced more than 2,200 cannon including 12-pounder Napoleans, three-inch ordinance guns, and heavy coastal cannon, and more than 700 tons of ironclad, some of which was used to cover the CSS Virginia * which engaged the USS Monitor, in the four-hour battle of Hampton Roads, also known as the Battle of the Monitor and the Merrimack, in March 1862. When it was imminent that Ulysses S. Grant would overtake nearby Petersburg in April 1865, CSA President Jefferson Davis and his cabinet abandoned Richmond. Taking the last unobstructed railroad train out of Richmond, they fled south to safer territory in Charlotte, North Carolina, where they met in secret until the end of the war. Having been instructed to set the bridges, armory, and supply warehouses on fire, retreating soldiers caused a fire that destroyed large parts of Richmond. The following day the city’s mayor surrendered Richmond to Union soldiers and requested assistance to put out the fires. Federal troops were removed from Richmond in 1870, after the state was readmitted to the Union. Innovation and Invention Richmond kept its Confederate history alive even after Reconstruction ended, as it embraced the winds of change blowing through the city. Monument Avenue, established in 1877, was erected to honor such important Confederate figures of Richmond as Davis, JEB Stuart, Robert E. Lee, General Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson, and Matthew F. Maury, a prominent oceanographer and nicknamed “Pathfinder of the Seas.” In 1888, the country’s first successful trolley system opened in Richmond. Designed by electric power pioneer Frank J. Sprague, the system soon replaced horse-drawn cars. The street railway system of the late 1800s and beginning of the 1900s brought welcomed growth to Richmond. The tobacco industry aided Richmond in coming out of the economic slump caused by The Great Depression. Thanks to tobacco producer Philip Morris and others, Richmond was back on its feet within five years, and the value of its real estate had increased 250 percent between 1935 and 1936. As Richmond was entering the post-[World War II] lifestyle, it was introduced to new uses for natural gas in 1950. In addition, the highest production of cigarettes in the city’s history occurred in 1952, at a 110 billion in one year. Originally approved for 15 exits, the Richmond-Petersburg Turnpike revolutionized travel when it opened in 1958. The toll road was soon given the designation of Interstate 95 through Richmond but divided into Interstates 85 and 95 South at nearby Petersburg. Modern Richmond When Hurricane Agnes dropped 16 inches of rain over central Virginia in 1972, the James River flooded Richmond. Flood waters in the river reached 6.5 feet higher than the historical 200-year-old record. Thirteen years later, a multi-million dollar floodwall was erected to prevent the rising waters of the river from overflowing again. To validate their place in the civil rights movement, Richmondites elected L. Douglas Wilder as the first African-American governor in America. A grandson of former slaves, Wilder was sworn in as governor of the State of Virginia, in 1990. After years of decline in the economy of the downtown area, the expanded floodwall opened up portions of the riverfront for development. At the beginning of the 21st century, revitalization efforts yielded a 1.25-mile corridor of trendy apartments, restaurants, shops, and hotels. Located along the Canal Walk, the corridor is located where the old James River, Kanawha Canal, and the Haxal Canal once flowed. In an attempt to lure more tourists to the history-rich area, the Richmond Civil War Visitor Center, operated by the National Park Service, opened three floors of exhibits and artifacts in the old Tredegar Iron Works in 2000. Other attractions Aside from the redeveloped riverfront, “River City” has a number of other places of interest for history buffs and travelers. Once deemed the “Black Wall Street” sometime during the 1800s because of its many banks, Jackson Ward continues as one of the most historic areas of the city and encompasses more than 40 neighborhood blocks. Known as the “Harlem of the South,” Jackson Ward was frequented by such famous blacks as Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, Lena Horne, Billie Holiday, Nat King Cole, and James Brown, at such popular venues the historic Hippodrome Theater. Visitors can dine at popular Croaker’s Spot, Richmond's famous soul-food, seafood institution see the monument of “Bojangles,” who donated a stoplight for the safety of neighborhood children or view artifacts at the Black History Museum and Cultural Center located on Clay Street. Richmond is also home to the Museum of the Confederacy and the adjoining White House of the Confederacy, as well as the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, which contains the largest collection of Faberge objects outside of Russia. For youth-oriented activities, visitors will enjoy the Children’s Museum of Richmond, with its IMAX theater, and the nearby Virginia Museum of Science. The American Civil War Center, with its debut sometime in 2006, will be the first museum of its kind to interweave, in a national context, the historical accounts of how Union, Confederate, and African-American soldiers fought next to and across from each other during the Civil War. Institutes of Higher Learning The diversity of population and culture is represented quite strongly in the higher learning institutions located in the area. Virginia Commonwealth University’s School of Arts ranks one of the best art schools in the country. The University of Richmond was founded by Virginia Baptists, in 1830, as a liberal arts university, and currently enrolls 3,000 undergraduate and 1,200 graduate students in law, business, and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Historically a black university, Virginia Union University was founded by a former slave trader, in 1865. Sports and live action Although the area does not have any major league professional sports team, Richmond residents are privy to many minor league sports activities, including the Richmond Braves baseball team, the Atlanta Braves’ AAA affiliate, which plays at The Diamond. The Richmond Kickers soccer team plays at the University of Richmond Stadium, and the Richmond Riverdogs, which represent the city in the United Hockey League. Others sporting events include NASCAR racing at the Richmond International Raceway, where two annual Nextel NASCAR races are held, and thoroughbred racing at Colonial Downs, which hosts the prestigious Virginia Derby and other horse races, in nearby New Kent county.

* The Virginia was built using the remains of the scuttled USS Merrimack. She was raised from the bottom of the James River at the shipyards near Portsmouth, rebuilt using the engines and the hull, and outfitted with ironclad siding.


WWII battleship USS Iowa overhauled in Richmond, becomes floating museum

The USS Iowa, a World War II-era ship that’s the fastest battleship ever built, stands out in the Richmond marina. The 887-foot long gray hull dwarfs the surrounding ships and containers that are scattered around the harbor. Its giant 16-inch guns, capable of firing a shell more than 23 miles, tower over small figures moving across the bow. The people walking around the harbor and across the deck only emphasize the size of the ship, which during World War II housed a crew of 2,150 men.

In nearly seven decades of service, the “Big Stick” has seen both the best and the worst history has to offer. For the next month, it will see Richmond, where it is being repainted before being towed to Los Angeles to become a permanent museum managed by the Pacific Battleship Center.

Over the years, the Iowa has earned nine battle stars and 14 awards. In World War II, it essentially served as a naval Air Force One, ferrying president Franklin D. Roosevelt to a conference with Stalin and Churchill in Tehran – a mission that very nearly ended in disaster when a live torpedo was accidentally fired at it by another American ship. Roosevelt’s physical condition also meant some special changes had to be made. To this day, the Iowa is the only vessel in the U.S. Navy to ever be fitted with a bathtub.

In April 1989, one of the ship’s turrets exploded, killing 47 sailors in one of the worst peacetime disasters in naval history. Despite two separate investigations, the cause was never officially determined.

The Iowa is open Saturdays and Sundays for visitors to learn more. For now, though, visitors can only walk across the ship’s bow.

“We are trying to open as many areas as possible to the public,” said David Way, the ship’s tour manager. “But we have to make sure it is safe.”

Volunteers are working on part of the ship’s exterior, and an air sample has to be completed before the public is allowed inside.

“There are some awkward areas below to get people in and out of,” Way said. “When we walk around there we are always ducking. Now I know why they always had 18-year-olds running around.”

To make up for the limited access while the ship is in Richmond, the Pacific Battleship Center is trying to give visitors a little more by opening up a small military museum. “Plus, you have to have a souvenir shop, so we threw that out there as well,” Way said.

But even though you can only walk across the bow, it is already possible to get a feel of the size and grandeur of the ship. That grandeur was overwhelming for Dan Pawloski, the ship’s operations manager. After 31 years as a carpenter, he is now quitting his job and moving to Los Angeles to permanently work on the vessel.

Pawloski came across the Iowa more or less by accident. His neighbor happened to be the vice-president of the Pacific Battleship Center, and asked him to help out with some paperwork. “They ended up getting the ship, and I was invited to ride along when the ship was towed to Richmond,” Pawloski said. From that moment he was hooked, and spent every free hour he had volunteering on the Iowa.

Surprisingly Pawloski’s sudden passion did not create any marital problems. “It’s a great story,” he said, laughing. “My wife is the ship’s store manager. After the first weekend I came here, I talked her into coming. Since then, she has been here every weekend also. So we’re actually both embedded into the Iowa, we’re both embedded into making this a piece of history.”

The deck of the USS Iowa. Photo courtesy of Jeremy Bonelle.

They have their work cut out for them. Besides the painting effort, the Pacific Battleship Center has partnered with former Disney employees to work on special effects that will make the ship come alive. The command center, or “Star Wars Room” as Way calls it, is the prime candidate. But the staff is already considering other areas, such as the ship’s engine and fire rooms.

But there are some limitations to what they can do. The 70-year-old ship is still part of the reserve fleet, and can be recalled into active duty until 2020. As a result, the crew has to keep certain systems operational, and display the ship in a “dignified” manner, according to Navy criteria. But Way said he does not foresee any problems.

“We want to have a respectable museum, but also an entertaining museum – you can definitely strike a balance,” he said.

The ship is scheduled to be towed to Los Angeles on May 21, where it will ultimately become more than just a museum. The Iowa-class veterans have already scheduled their annual reunion on board. Boy and Girl Scouts can spend the night. Hollywood is next door, and you might well see the Iowa as a prop in next year’s blockbuster.

Still, the crew will be leaving Richmond with mixed feelings after a welcome from the local community. “It will be a bittersweet moment,” Way said. “Los Angeles is home to most of our staff, but we made some great friends here.”


Watch the video: AMERICAN vs BRITISH Battleships 1904 (January 2022).