USS Alabama file photo

USS Alabama

CountryUnited States
Ship ClassSouth Dakota-class Battleship
Hull NumberBB-60
BuilderNorfolk Naval Shipyard, Virginia, United States
Laid Down1 Feb 1940
Launched16 Feb 1942
Commissioned16 Aug 1942
Decommissioned9 Jan 1947
Displacement35000 tons standard
Length680 feet
Beam108 feet
Draft36 feet
MachineryWestinghouse geared steam turbines, four shafts
Power Output130000 SHP
Speed27 knots
Range15,000nm at 15 knots
Crew1793
Armament9x410mm Mk 6 guns, 20x130mm guns, 24x40mm Bofors guns, 22x20mm Oerlikon cannon
Armor12.25in belt, 18in turrets, 1.5in-6.33in decks, 15in conning tower
AircraftTwo OS2U Kingfisher scout floatplanes

Contributor: C. Peter Chen

USS Alabama was launched at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Virginia, United States in Feb 1942, three months after the US entered WW2. She was commissioned into service in Aug of the same year. She held her shakedown cruise in the Chesapeake Bay on the east coast of the United States in late 1942 and held training operations off Casco Bay, Maine, United States in early 1943. She departed the United States in Apr 1943 for Britain alongside of her sister ship USS South Dakota, joining the British Royal Navy Home Fleet at Scapa Flow, Scotland, United Kingdom on 19 May. After a period of training, she covered the landing of Allied troops on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, situated on the border between the Norwegian Sea and the Arctic Sea, in Jun 1943. In the following month, she participated in Operation Governor which aimed to draw German attention toward southern Norway while the Allied forces prepared for the actual target of Sicily, Italy. On 1 Aug, she was detached from the Royal Navy and began sailing for the United States, arriving in Norfolk 8 days later.

After a scheduled overhaul at Norfolk, USS Alabama sailed for the South Pacific, arriving in the New Hebrides by Sep 1943, in time to participate the invasions of Gilbert Islands; she provided anti-aircraft fire for fleet carriers and provided gunfire support for the landings at Tarawa Atoll and Makin Atoll in the Gilbert Islands. After a very brief time in the drydock at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii for a scheduled overhaul, she returned to the South Pacific in late Jan 1944 and joined the fleet that supported the invasion of Marshall Islands. On 16 and 17 Feb, she escorted US carriers as their carrier aircraft raided the Japanese naval base at Truk, Caroline Islands. From Truk, the fleet sailed toward Mariana Islands, where the carrier aircraft raided Japanese positions on Tinian, Saipan, and Guam. In early Mar 1944, she temporarily served, for the period of five days, as the flagship of Vice Admiral Marc Mitscher of the US Navy Fast Carrier Task Force. In late Mar and early Apr, she supported carrier raids on several Caroline Islands bases. Later in Apr, she supported landings in the northern coast of Australian New Guinea and Dutch New Guinea. On 12 Jun, USS Alabama provided defense for US carriers while the carrier aircraft struck Japanese positions on Saipan in the Mariana Islands; on the following day, she bombarded Saipan with her guns for six hours in an attempt to soften the shore defenses prior to the amphibious assault which was to take place on 15 Jun. On 19 Jun 1944, her radar picked up incoming enemy aircraft, but it was initially thought to be inaccurate; in the ensuing Battle of the Philippine Sea, later nicknamed "Great Marianas Turkey Shoot" by the Americans, she would play a minor role, firing sporadically on Japanese aircraft that broke through the perimeter defenses. In Jul and then Sep, she escorted carriers during the Guam of Mariana Islands and Palau, Ulithi, and Yap of Caroline Islands actions. Between Sep and Nov 1944, she escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft struck Japanese positions across the Philippine Islands. She saw a brief period of respite from fighting in early Dec at Ulithi, Caroline Islands, conducting training exercises. She departed Ulithi on 10 Dec and resumed her station alongside carriers off Luzon, Philippine Islands by 14 Dec. USS Alabama returned to the United States in Jan 1945, spending time at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton, Washington through Mar 1945 for repairs. After a period of training off southern California, United States, she returned to the South Pacific in late Apr 1945 to support the Okinawa, Japan invasion that was already in progress. During the night of 17 to 18 Jul, she bombarded industrial targets in the Hitachi-Mito area 13 kilometers northeast of Tokyo, Japan.

When the Pacific War ended, USS Alabama was underway south of Japan. Her Marines detachment, supported by sailors, assisted in the occupation of the Yokosuka-Tokyo area of Japan. She departed Japanese waters in Sep, bringing home US servicemen from Japanese Home Islands and Okinawa to San Francisco, California, United States, arriving on 15 Oct. She underwent deactivation overhaul at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and was decommissioned in Jan 1947. She was a part of the Bremerton Group of the United States Pacific Reserve Fleet until 1962 when she was struck from the US Naval Register. She was turned over to the government of the state of Alabama, United States to be operated as a museum ship, and the battleship began her life in that capacity starting in 1965 at Battleship Memorial Park, Mobile, Alabama, United States, where she still remains today.

Source: Wikipedia

Battleship USS Alabama (BB-60) Interactive Map

USS Alabama Operational Timeline

1 Apr 1939 The order for the future battleship Alabama was issued.
1 Feb 1940 The keel of battleship Alabama was laid down at Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Virginia, United States.
16 Feb 1942 Battleship Alabama was launched at Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Virginia, United States, sponsored by Henrietta McCormick Hill, the wife of US Senator J. Lister Hill.
16 Aug 1942 USS Alabama was commissioned into service with Captain George B. Wilson in command.
11 Nov 1942 USS Alabama began her shakedown cruise in the Chesapeake Bay on the east coast of the United States.
11 Jan 1943 USS Alabama arrived at Chesapeake Bay on the east coast of the United States from Casco Bay, Maine, United States.
13 Feb 1943 USS Alabama arrived at Casco Bay, Maine, United States.
2 Apr 1943 USS Alabama departed the United States for Britain.
19 May 1943 USS Alabama arrived at Scapa Flow, Scotland, United Kingdom.
1 Aug 1943 USS Alabama was detached from the British Royal Navy Home Fleet and departed Scapa Flow, Scotland, United Kingdom.
9 Aug 1943 USS Alabama arrived at Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
19 Aug 1943 USS Alabama completed a scheduled overhaul at Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Virginia, United States.
20 Aug 1943 USS Alabama departed Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
25 Aug 1943 USS Alabama transited the Panama Canal.
14 Sep 1943 USS Alabama arrived at Havannah Harbor, Efate Island, New Hebrides Islands.
7 Nov 1943 USS Alabama arrived at Fiji.
11 Nov 1943 USS Alabama departed Fiji in support of the Gilbert Islands operation.
20 Nov 1943 USS Alabama provided naval gunfire support for the US landing at Betio, Tarawa Atoll, Gilbert Islands.
26 Nov 1943 During the night, USS Alabama fired anti-aircraft guns against incoming Japanese raids.
8 Dec 1943 USS Alabama bombarded Nauru, expending 535 410-millimeter rounds. During the bombardment, destroyer USS Boyd received a hit from a Japanese coastal gun; the medical staff aboard USS Alabama treated three wounded sailors from USS Boyd.
12 Dec 1943 USS Alabama arrived at Efate Island, New Hebrides Islands.
5 Jan 1944 USS Alabama departed Efate Island, New Hebrides Islands.
12 Jan 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii.
21 Jan 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Funafuti, Ellice Islands.
25 Jan 1944 USS Alabama departed Funafuti, Ellice Islands.
29 Jan 1944 USS Alabama bombarded Japanese positions on Roi, Kwajalein Atoll, Marshall Islands.
30 Jan 1944 USS Alabama bombarded Japanese positions on Namur, Kwajalein Atoll, Marshall Islands.
12 Feb 1944 USS Alabama departed to escort US carriers for the raid on Truk, Caroline Islands.
16 Feb 1944 USS Alabama escorted carriers while carrier aircraft attacked Truk, Caroline Islands.
17 Feb 1944 USS Alabama escorted carriers while carrier aircraft attacked Truk, Caroline Islands.
21 Feb 1944 While at sea, USS Alabama's secondary gun mount No. 9 accidentally fired into secondary gun mount No. 5, killing 5 and wounding 11.
22 Feb 1944 USS Alabama patrolled in waters southeast of Saipan, Mariana Islands.
26 Feb 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Majuro Atoll, Marshall Islands.
3 Mar 1944 USS Alabama became the flagship of Vice Admiral Marc Mitscher of the US Navy Fast Carrier Task Force at Majuro Atoll, Marshall Islands.
8 Mar 1944 USS Alabama was relieved as the flagship of Vice Admiral Marc Mitscher of the US Navy Fast Carrier Task Force at Majuro Atoll, Marshall Islands.
22 Mar 1944 USS Alabama departed Majuro Atoll, Marshall Islands.
29 Mar 1944 USS Alabama shared the credit in the downing of at least one Japanese aircraft which were attempting to attack US carriers.
30 Mar 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft attacked Japanese positions at Palau, Yap, Ulithi, and Woleai in the Caroline Islands.
13 Apr 1944 USS Alabama departed Majuro Atoll, Marshall Islands.
4 May 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Majuro Atoll, Marshall Islands.
12 Jun 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft attacked Japanese positions on Saipan, Mariana Islands.
13 Jun 1944 USS Alabama bombarded Japanese positions on Saipan, Mariana Islands.
14 Jul 1944 USS Alabama, flagship of Rear Admiral E. W. Hanson, departed Eniwetok, Marshall Islands.
21 Jul 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft attacked Japanese positions on Guam, Mariana Islands.
11 Aug 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Eniwetok, Marshall Islands.
30 Aug 1944 USS Alabama departed Eniwetok, Marshall Islands.
6 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft attacked Japanese positions in the Caroline Islands.
7 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft attacked Japanese positions in the Caroline Islands.
8 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft attacked Japanese positions in the Caroline Islands.
12 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft began attacking Japanese positions in the Philippine Islands.
13 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft began attacking Japanese positions in the Philippine Islands.
14 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft began attacking Japanese positions in the Philippine Islands.
21 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft began attacking Japanese positions in the Manila Bay area in the Philippine Islands.
22 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft began attacking Japanese positions in the Manila Bay area in the Philippine Islands.
24 Sep 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft began attacking Japanese positions in the central area of the Philippine Islands.
28 Sep 1944 USS Alabama arrived in Saipan, Mariana Islands.
1 Oct 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
6 Oct 1944 USS Alabama departed Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
14 Oct 1944 USS Alabama shot down three attacking Japanese aircraft while operating south of Taiwan.
15 Oct 1944 USS Alabama supported landing operations on Leyte, Philippine Islands.
30 Oct 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
3 Nov 1944 USS Alabama departed Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
24 Nov 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
10 Dec 1944 USS Alabama departed Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
14 Dec 1944 USS Alabama escorted US carriers off Luzon, Philippine Islands as carrier aircraft began attacking Japanese positions in the area.
17 Dec 1944 USS Alabama departed waters off Luzon, Philippine Islands.
18 Dec 1944 Heavy seas caused by Typhoon Cobra damaged the two OS2U Kingfisher floatplanes aboard USS Alabama.
24 Dec 1944 USS Alabama arrived at Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
18 Jan 1945 USS Alabama entered a drydock at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, Washington, United States.
25 Feb 1945 USS Alabama exited a drydock at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, Washington, United States.
17 Mar 1945 USS Alabama departed Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, Washington, United States.
4 Apr 1945 USS Alabama departed California, United States.
10 Apr 1945 USS Alabama arrived at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii.
28 Apr 1945 USS Alabama arrived at Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
9 May 1945 USS Alabama departed Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
14 May 1945 USS Alabama shot down two of the several Japanese aircraft that attempted to attack US warships; she also shared credit with anti-aircraft crews of other ships for the downing two other aircraft during the attack.
5 Jun 1945 USS Alabama suffered minor damage from a typhoon.
1 Jul 1945 USS Alabama set sail for the Japanese Home Islands.
9 Aug 1945 Medical staff aboard USS Alabama visited destroyers USS Ault and USS Borie to provide medical assistance.
5 Sep 1945 USS Alabama entered Tokyo Bay, Japan.
20 Sep 1945 USS Alabama departed Japan.
15 Oct 1945 USS Alabama arrived at San Francisco, California, United States at about 1200 hours.
27 Oct 1945 USS Alabama hosted 9,000 civilian visitors at San Francisco, California, United States.
29 Oct 1945 USS Alabama departed San Francisco, California, United States and arrived at San Pedro, which was also in California.
27 Feb 1946 USS Alabama departed San Pedro, California, United States for Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton, Washington, United States.
9 Jan 1947 USS Alabama was decommissioned from service at Naval Station Puget Sound, Seattle, Washington, United States.
1 Jun 1962 Battleship Alabama was struck from the US Naval Register while at Seattle, Washington, United States.
11 Jun 1964 Battleship Alabama was named a museum ship while at Seattle, Washington, United States
16 Jun 1964 Battleship Alabama was turned over to the government of the state of Alabama, United States while at Seattle, Washington, United States.
7 Jul 1964 The government of the state of Alabama, United States ceremonially took over ownership of battleship Alabama at Seattle, Washington, United States.
14 Sep 1964 Battleship Alabama arrived, by tow, at Battleship Memorial Park, Mobile, Alabama, United States.
9 Jan 1965 Battleship Alabama was open to visitors as a museum ship.
14 Jan 1986 Battleship Alabama was entered into the US National Register of Historic Places.
9 Jan 2006 Battleship Alabama, having been closed due to storm damage, re-opened as a museum ship.

Photographs

Keel laying of battleship Alabama, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia, United States, 1 Feb 1940Riveters working on battleship Alabama, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia, United States, 1940-1942Ship fitters working on battleship Alabama, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia, United States, 1940-1942Battleship Alabama under construction, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia, United States, 1941-1942
See all 73 photographs of Battleship USS Alabama (BB-60)



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Visitor Submitted Comments

  1. don says:
    3 Jun 2013 12:28:08 AM

    ....and well worth a visit if you're in Mobile AL, USA. Also extant is submarine 'Drum' and a fine aviation museum
  2. Anonymous says:
    24 Jun 2014 12:04:46 PM

    Yup been there! I live in southern Alabama, so i've been to it quiet a few times actually. It's as beautiful on the inside as it is on the outside.

    And it isn't all about looks, this ship had seen combat and done a fine job of it. My respects to the USS Alabama and it's crew!

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More on USS Alabama
Personnel:
» Robert Feller

Event(s) Participated:
» New Guinea-Papua Campaign, Phase 3
» Gilbert Islands Campaign
» Marshall Islands Campaign
» Attack on Truk
» Mariana Islands Campaign and the Great Turkey Shoot
» Palau Islands and Ulithi Islands Campaigns
» Philippines Campaign, Phase 1, the Leyte Campaign
» Philippines Campaign, Phase 2
» Typhoon Cobra
» Okinawa Campaign
» Preparations for Invasion of Japan


Battleship USS Alabama (BB-60) Photo Gallery
Keel laying of battleship Alabama, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia, United States, 1 Feb 1940
See all 73 photographs of Battleship USS Alabama (BB-60)



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