Mississippi file photo

USS Mississippi

CountryUnited States
Ship ClassNew Mexico-class Battleship
Hull NumberBB-41
Commissioned1 Dec 1917
Decommissioned1 Nov 1956
Displacement32000 tons standard


USS Mississippi, a 32,000 ton New Mexico class battleship, was built at Newport News, Virginia. She was commissioned in December 1917, and operated in the western Atlantic area until July 1919, when she transited the Panama Canal to the Pacific. Over more than a decade, she operated with the fleet's other battleships, conducting exercises and training operations in the Pacific and in the Caribbean. During gunnery practice on 12 June 1924, she suffered a turret fire that took the lives of 48 of her crew. Mississippi steamed to Australia on a U.S. Fleet good will tour in mid-1925.

During 1931-33 , Mississippi underwent a major modernization that gave her an all-new superstructure, improved armament and enhanced protection. She returned to the Pacific in October 1934 to resume her earlier pattern of regular exercises, Fleet Problems and training. In June 1941, in response to the deteriorating war situation in Europe, she was brought back to the Atlantic, operating between the United States and Iceland during much of the rest of that year.

In early 1942, after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Mississippi rejoined the Pacific Fleet. She spent most of 1942 along the U.S. west coast and went to the South Pacific late in that year. In 1943, she took part operations against Kiska Island, in the Aleutians, and in the capture of the Gilbert Islands. During the latter operation, on 29 November 1943, Mississippi experienced another turret explosion, which took 43 lives. Following repairs, she participated in the capture of Kwajalein in February 1944 and bombarded Japanese-held islands in February and March. Later in the year, she was part of the force that invaded Peleliu and Leyte and defeated a Japanese task force in the Battle of Surigao Strait. Mississippi provided gunfire support for the Lingayen landings in January 1945 and for the conquest of Okinawa in March-June. The battleship was damaged by suicide planes in both operations. She was present in Tokyo Bay on 2 September 1945, when Japan formally surrendered and returned to the United States soon thereafter.

Mississippi was converted to a gunnery training and weapons development ship in 1946, and given the new hull number AG-128. In this role, she carried a variety of old and new guns and radars, while serving with the Operational Development Force in the Atlantic. During the mid-1950s, she was test ship for the Navy's first surface-to-air guided missile, the "Terrier". Decommissioned in September 1956, USS Mississippi was sold for scrapping in November of that year, after almost forty years of service.

Source: Naval Historical Center

USS Mississippi Operational Timeline

1 Dec 1917 Mississippi was commissioned into service.
14 Dec 1924 A new method in the launch of ship-based aircraft was displayed with the explosive-powered catapult launch of a Martin MO-1 observation plane from the forward turret of the USS Mississippi. Previously, ships other than aircraft-carriers had top come to a halt in order to lower the aircraft into the water to allow them to take off.
1 Sep 1941 Battleships USS Idaho, USS Mississippi, and USS New Mexico, escorted by 2 cruisers and 13 destroyers, were dispatched to patrol the Denmark Strait to protect American merchant shipping.
9 Jan 1945 USS Mississippi was damaged by Japanese special attack aircraft at Lingayen Gulf, Luzon, Philippine Islands.
1 Nov 1956 Mississippi was decommissioned from service.


USS ABSD-2 with USS Mississippi in the dock, Manus, Admiralty Islands, 12 Oct 1944Battleship Mississippi in the Mississippi River en route to New Orleans, Louisiana, 16 Oct 1945

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Visitor Submitted Comments

  1. jamie36 says:
    9 Jun 2005 08:49:03 PM

    got this ship confused with other mississippi,sorry
  2. Anonymous says:
    25 Aug 2009 05:48:46 PM

    I was a Marine aboard this ship 18 months and went all over the south pacific. we also went through a typhoon that took my battel station off. which was a 40 mm quad.
  3. Michael says:
    25 Oct 2010 03:38:15 PM

    Can you tell me if there was a crew member named Luis Rodriques (turret gunner, I believe) during BB-41s tour in the pacific during WWII?
  4. Anonymous says:
    17 Apr 2011 01:18:50 PM

    My Grandfather served on this ship, I have his Japan harbor card, he never told us much about the time on ship. Being in the Navy now myself I understand a little. He experienced a lot more than I ever knew ...
  5. Melinda says:
    2 May 2011 10:49:26 PM

    My father served on the USS Mississippi in the South Pacific for over two years. I live near Bremerton WA where it was serviced for a short time during the war. They have a very nice Naval Museum. I plan to donate some of his memorabilia that he saved from his time on this battle ship. It's great history for us all to know about. I look at some of the pictures I have of the crew and it was a ship full of very young men. They went through an awful lot, we could never imagine.
  6. Olivia says:
    18 May 2011 05:38:25 PM

    My father served on the USS Mississippi from September 1942 to December 1945, where upon discharge his rating was Gunner's Mate 3C. He often speaks of some of the men that served along side him on this ship. One man in particular often comes up in his conversation and I was wondering if perhaps anyone might have knowledge of him, Albert Souza.
  7. Paul Bouchard says:
    13 Jun 2011 03:00:27 PM

    My father's name was Albert Joseph Bouchard, but he went by the name of "Slim" or "Fred". He was a cook 1st class aboard the Mississippi all through WWII. He stood 6' 4" tall and weighed about 180 -190 lbs. I believe that he had a friend that he spoke of by the name of Jim Hutenlocker.<<(spelling??) I remember him saying how he loved "The Missi". I often wonder if there are any of his old shipmates out there. To all her old crewmembers I say, "thank you for your service."
  8. Don says:
    24 Sep 2011 04:26:14 AM

    My dad served on the Missi in WW2. When he passed, my mom donated artifacts and pics to the Nimitz Museaum in Fredricksburg TX. She also unveiled the plaque near the garden of peace. My dads name was Leslie R. Allison. His nickname was "JOE". He and my Mom met and married when I was about 3. He took the job on as Dad, and preformed it great.
  9. Johnny says:
    20 Dec 2011 01:30:06 PM

    My dad served on the Miss in WWII. He was wounded at Leyete Gulf. His name was Malcolm
    Barnes. I think he was most impressed with
    a shipmate named McManus. I served on the
    Uss Pharris FF 1094.
  10. Anonymous says:
    27 Dec 2011 07:06:14 PM

    My dad ,Eugene T Satterfield served on her in WW 11
  11. Anonymous says:
    5 Feb 2012 10:21:41 AM

    If you relative served of the USS Mass. get his name of the memorial at Battle Ship Cove.
  12. Anonymous says:
    1 Apr 2012 05:12:50 PM

    My father in law served on this ship and was awarded a purple heart from a kamakazi attack. He passed away before I had a chance to meet him.
  13. Anonymous says:
    2 May 2012 10:02:54 AM

    My grandfather served on the Mighty Missy during WWII in the Pacific. I almost went to the Naval Academy right out of high school (1986) but was talked out of it by my grandfather. I live near Annapolis now, and have some fond memories of the stories he told, especially about the Kamakazis that crashed into the deck a few times. His name was Joseph Ponish, and he worked on one of the guns.
  14. Anonymous says:
    11 May 2012 02:51:23 PM

    My father served on the Mississippt during the later part of WWII. Would be interested in anyone having recollection of John Hamilton.
  15. Anonymous says:
    28 May 2012 06:57:20 AM

    my uncle lewis barkley was on the Mississippi and today is his birthday he died six years ago
  16. Anonymous says:
    30 Jun 2012 12:05:03 PM

    My father, James David Abernathy, served on the Mississippi during WW11. He was proud of his service and enjoyed the reunions with his shipmates in later years. He passed in Jan. 2000.
  17. Anonymous says:
    22 Jul 2012 11:11:24 PM

    My grandfather was on the Mississippi during ww11. He was a twenty year vet. His name was Harry A Day .from 1940-1962.
  18. Nathan says:
    8 Aug 2012 06:37:49 PM

    My late Grandfather Kennith McLeod served on the Mississippi during WW2. God bless all that have and will serve.
  19. Laura Dobbins says:
    22 Sep 2012 11:50:45 PM

    My dad, James (Jimmy) Malcolm Dobbins served on the USS Missy BB-41 between 1944 and 1946 as an ENT. If anyone has information on him or stories of someone who served with him, I would appreciate it. My dad too never talked about it and he died when I was very young.
  20. D Boss says:
    15 Dec 2012 01:12:34 PM

    My Brother Clyde served on the Mississippi. It is amazing how these vets never talked about their service. He joined the ship in Hawaii when it was being repaird from the first time a turret blew up. He was responsible for loading Turret #3 seeing that the breech was clear and there was no fire in the chamber when they shoved in the new powder loads, wrapped in asbestos and fire in the breech is what caused the #2 turret to explode on the ship. They were also hit twice by suicide bombers.
  21. steve mc cann says:
    19 Jan 2013 09:53:41 PM

    my dad marvel a. mc cann, from guam was a steward mate 3rd class on the mississippi ww2 early 1940's. he was a steward for then captain spruence.
  22. John Rudi says:
    20 Jan 2013 11:08:51 PM

    I am writing this in behalf of my father John Rudlowski. He would love to learn more information about what his father's live was aboard ship. His father was Nicholas Rudlowski. He only spoke of one kamakazi attack. He would love to learn more about life on ship. Maybe talk to friends he served with on ship. He spoke so little about his side of his life.
  23. Anonymous says:
    10 Feb 2013 09:09:16 AM

    my father served aboard her also, but was in the Aleutian lslands at the time. Arthur j Mcgauley was his name.
  24. Anonymous says:
    29 Mar 2013 08:02:47 PM

    my dad was aboard the ship he died in march 2013
    never talked much about WW II he had metal from a kamakazis plane in his hand and neck that they couldn't get out at the time. his name was Nick Schmit
  25. Jim Flynn says:
    9 Apr 2013 02:10:58 PM

    My father, James Nelson Flynn, served aboard the Mississippi as a gunner's mate 1st class. If anyone knows anything about his time aboard please contact me. Thanks.
  26. Anonymous says:
    25 May 2013 07:31:44 AM

    My father, Lewis F Hylton, from NC served on the Mississippi during WWII. I know he crossed the Artic Circle the first time in 1941, but I don't know what ship he was on then. He passed away 1989.
  27. Justin Manker says:
    9 Jul 2013 01:25:05 PM

    My grandfather served aboard the Mississippi as a gunner James W. Hicks from Illinios. if any one knows anything about his time aboard please contact me
  28. Anonymous says:
    11 Aug 2013 03:42:18 PM

    My uncle, HERMAN LEE PURSER was a gunner on the USS MISSISSIPPI in the Pacific in WWII. If anyone knew about him during his service days, I would greatly appreciate hearing.
  29. Jon Yale says:
    3 Sep 2013 02:50:51 PM

    My grandfather Jerry Bob Welch was a signalman on this ship from the time it was in Iceland until the end of WW2. My grandfather told me many stories of the young men who served on this ship and our country at that time. As well as the kamakizi attacks. He brought back a piece of a kamikizi that hit this ship, that my family still has. The men who served from this era are all heros in my eyes...God bless the US forever.
  30. Juli Pellett says:
    29 Oct 2013 03:18:14 PM

    My grandfather, Mirville Calhoun "Cal" served on the Mississippi late 30'and early 1940's
  31. Anonymous says:
    11 Dec 2013 07:51:19 PM

    My father served from 1942-1946 as a Yeowman 2nd class. He passed in 1998, but left all his kids a copy of a book he wrote of his life. It included many stories of the men he served with aboard the USS Mississippi. His name was Lawrence (Larry) DeBell I have a old newspaper photo of the ship with some of the stamps(?) that indicate the number of battleships, destroyers, planes, etc that they took down during his time aboard the ship.
  32. Anonymous says:
    15 Feb 2014 08:20:25 AM

    I think my great grandfather served as chief petty officer on this ship - anybody heard of him?
  33. Anonymous says:
    22 Mar 2014 02:48:15 PM

    Anybody remember Harry A Day?
  34. Rita Irmini says:
    7 Apr 2014 08:12:06 AM

    My Dad, Tommy F. Jones, served on the USS Missippi from 1943-1945 as a signalman. He is 89 years of age, going strong and tells us great stories about his adventures at sea. Please feel free to contact us if you would like.
  35. Anonymous says:
    14 Apr 2014 09:16:53 AM

    Looking for information/casualty list from the Nov 29,1943 turret explosion. Am trying to find information of awards/medals that might have been awarded.
    d petteys
  36. Anonymous says:
    24 May 2014 03:07:37 AM

    My Uncle was killed in the Turret Explosion and I have his Purple Heart.
  37. Tim Dycus says:
    8 Jun 2014 03:01:34 PM

    My dad, CJ Dycus, was wounded during the Nov 29, 1943 turret explosion. He never talked about his experience on the ship. How can I find out what he experienced? He never received a purple heart, should he have?
  38. Ryan Swinney says:
    29 Aug 2014 10:12:06 AM

    My grandfather Charles Loftus was on this ship just prior to the start of the war all the way through the end of the war. He was a GM1 (Gunners Mate 1st class). He was a 21 year Vet to the Navy. I would be insterested in hearing any stories anyone might know. He passed away just last year (2013).
  39. j. miller says:
    3 Mar 2015 06:16:47 PM

    my father frank schneider served on the U.S.S. MISSIPPI. he also came tho ellis island as a child of 10 y/o. what a man!!! i know he signed up b-4 he was old enough to, as alot of men did. he lied about his age. he passed in 3-13 also. theres a place here in wi. call "the high ground" in neilsville. google it. GOD BLESS THE U.S.A. & GOD BLESS ALL THE MEN & WOMEN WHO SERVE. I PRAY FOR U
  40. G.Crossland says:
    8 Mar 2015 07:46:14 PM

    My grandfather Jack A. Crossland served on her from 1941-45 and was honorable discharged in 1946. From one story that my uncle told me, my grandfather was an AMMO runner for the turrets. He passed away March 1, 2015. 90 years old. Just wanted to share. God Bless our troops!!
  41. Bobby says:
    17 Mar 2015 05:34:32 PM

    My father Suey K. Lee whom I have never met served in the ship in 1947 he was a Cook-Chef- After 67 years my mother finally shared his letters with me! I would like to know more about my father and any siblings I may have. If you would please help me I would be very grateful/

    God Bless/
    B Him Thomas
    (916) 670-9894
    E Mail bkimthomas@gmail.com

  42. Anonymous says:
    17 Mar 2015 05:36:10 PM

    Perhaps I could contact his ship mates for more information!


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USS ABSD-2 with USS Mississippi in the dock, Manus, Admiralty Islands, 12 Oct 1944
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