USS Wisconsin file photo [1939]


CountryUnited States
Ship ClassIowa-class Battleship
Hull NumberBB-64
BuilderPhiladelphia Navy Yard
Ordered12 Jun 1940
Laid Down25 Jan 1941
Launched7 Dec 1943
Commissioned16 Apr 1944
Decommissioned1 Jul 1948
Displacement44,560 tons standard; 55,710 tons full
Length887 feet
Beam108 feet
Draft37 feet
Bunkerage7,073 tons of oil
Speed33 knots
Range18,000nm at 12 knots
Armament3x3x16in(406mm)/50cal Mark 7 guns, 10x2x5in(127mm)/38cal Mark 12 guns, 80x40mm/56cal Bofors AA guns, 49x20mm/70cal Oerlikon AA guns
Armor12.1in (307.3mm) belt, 11.3in (287mm) bulkheads, 11.6-17.3in (294.6-439.4mm) barbettes, 19.7in (500mm) turrets, 7.5in (190mm) decks
Aircraft3x OS2U Kingfisher floatplanes
Recommissioned3 Mar 1951
Second Decommission8 Mar 1958
Recommissioned22 Oct 1988
Final Decommission30 Sep 1991


ww2dbaseUSS Wisconsin was the third of United States Navy's Iowa-class battleships. With Captain Earl E. Stone in command, she held her trials in the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland, United States. On 7 Jul 1944, she departed Norfolk, Virginia, United States for Trinidad in the British West Indies for her shakedown cruise. After a brief post-shakedown repair period, she departed from Philadelphia Navy Yard in Pennsylvania, United States for the Pacific Fleet on 24 Sep 1944, traveling through the Panama Canal; she joined the Pacific Fleet on 2 Oct and the US Navy Third Fleet on 9 Dec. She escorted the carriers of Task Force 38 as the carriers' aircraft struck Manila in Luzon, Philippine Islands in preparation for the landings on the island of Mindoro. On 18 Dec, Task Force 38 sailed through Typhoon Cobra and incurred heavy losses, although Wisconsin survived with only two injuries. Between 3 and 22 Jan 1945, she escorted the carriers as the aircraft struck Luzon, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Canton in China, Hainan Island in China, Saigon in French Indochina, Camranh Bay off French Indochina, and Okinawa in Japan. On 16 Feb 1945, now as a part of Task Force 58 of the Fifth Fleet, she escorted carriers as the carrier planes raided the Japanese home islands. On 17 Feb, she arrived off Iwo Jima, Japan and bombarded the island ahead of the 19 Feb invasion. On 25 Feb, she escorted carriers during a raid on the island of Hachino off the coast of Honshu, Japan. In mid-Mar, she operated off Okinawa, Japan, acting as anti-aircraft platform when the task force was struck by a series of Japanese aerial attacks. On 24 Mar, she bombarded Okinawa along with other battleships of the task force. On 8 Jun, Task Force 58 attacked Kyushu, Japan, and Wisconsin again operated in the screen; on that day, one of her floatplanes rescued a downed pilot from the carrier USS Shangri-La. Between 13 Jun and 1 Jul, she was anchored at Leyte Gulf in the Philippine Islands for repairs. On 10 Jul, she escorted the task force during a raid against the Tokyo, Japan area. On 16 Jul, she fired her guns at the steel mills and oil refineries at Muroran, Hokkaido, Japan. On 18 Jul, she bombarded industrial facilities in the Hitachi Miro area on the northeastern shore of Honshu. After the Japanese surrender, she arrived in Tokyo Bay on 5 Sep 1945.

ww2dbaseOn 23 Sep 1945, Wisconsin participated in Operation Magic Carpet and departed from Okinawa with American servicemen, arriving at San Francisco, California, United States on 15 Oct. On 18 Jan 1946, she arrived at Hampton Roads, Virginia. In 1946, she visited Cuba, Chile, Peru, Panama Canal Zone, and Venezuela, returning to Norfolk, Virginia on 2 Dec 1946. In 1947, she largely operated as a training ship. She was decommissioned on 1 Jul 1948 and placed into the Atlantic Reserve Fleet.

ww2dbaseOn 3 Mar 1951, Wisconsin was recommissioned due to the Korean War, with Captain Thomas Burrowes in command. After shakedown cruise and a training cruise to Europe and the Caribbean Sea, she arrived at Yokosuka, Japan on 21 Nov 1951, relieving sister ship USS New Jersey as the flagship of Vice Admiral H. M. Martin of the Seventh Fleet. Off Korea, she provided naval gunfire support for the US 1st Marine Division, Republic of Korea 1st Corps, and other friendly units in the Kasong-Kosong, Kojo, Wonson, and other areas of conflict through 1 Apr when she returned to the United States. Between 9 and 10 Jan 1952, off Pusan, Korea, she hosted Korean President Syngman Rhee and his wife; Rhee awarded Martin the Republic of Korea Order of the Military Merit during his visit. On 26 Feb, again off Pusan, she was visited by the ROK Chief of Naval Operations Vice Admiral Shon, US Ambassador J. J. Muccio, and British Royal Navy Rear Admiral Scott-Montcrief. On 15 Mar 1952, she received her first direct hit when a 155-mm coastal artillery shell struck her on the starboard, wounding three men. She returned to Long Beach, California, United States on 19 Apr.

ww2dbaseOn 9 Jun 1952, Wisconsin served one tour of duty as a training ship, taking midshipmen to Scotland in the United Kingdom, France, and Cuba; she remained a training ship through Sep 1953. On 25 Aug, she participated in the NATO exercise Operation Mainbrace off Scotland. On 12 Oct, she returned to Japan and became the flagship of the Seventh Fleet, remaining in that role until 1 Apr 1954. Between 11 Jun and 12 Jul, she underwent an overhaul at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Virginia. Between Jul 1954 and 1956, she once again served as a training ship. On 6 May 1956, she collided with destroyer USS Eaton, causing extensive bow damage that put her in the dry dock at Norfolk, where she was fitted with the bow made for the hull of uncompleted battleship Kentucky. She visited Gibraltar, Turkey, Italy, Britain, and other locations before being decommissioned on 8 Mar 1958 at Bayonne, New Jersey, United States, marking an era in the US Navy where no battleship was in active service.

ww2dbaseOn 22 Oct 1988, after undergoing modernization for the previous two years, Wisconsin was recommissioned under the command of Captain Jerry M. Blesch. Between 1989 and 1990, she conducted cruises and training exercises. On 23 Aug 1990, she arrived at the Persian Gulf, with other warships, during Operation Desert Shield. On 15 Jan 1991, as Operation Desert Storm commenced, she launched Tomahawk cruise missiles against Iraqi targets as the Tomahawk Land Attack Missile strike commander vessel. On 6 Feb, joined by sister ship Missouri, she bombarded Iraqi targets in southern Kuwait, using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) as a spotter in combat for the first time; she was engaged in similar bombardment missions on several occasions in Feb, shelling Iraqi ships, troop positions, and military installations. After the conflict was over on 28 Feb, she returned to the United States on 28 Mar 1991, marking the last time that an US battleship actively participated in a war.

ww2dbaseOn 30 Sep 1991, Wisconsin was decommissioned. She was moved to Norfolk on 15 Oct 1996, and then towed to Portsmouth, Virginia on 7 Dec 2000. On 16 Apr 2001, she boarded tourists for the first time in her new role as a museum ship at Hampton Roads Naval Museum, Virginia while still officially on the roster of US Navy's reserve fleet. On 17 Mar 2006, she was removed from the reserve fleet roster due to the potentially high cost to modernize and reactivate the battleship for service again, although she was maintained in a way so that she could be activated for combat, as dictated by the US Congress.

ww2dbaseSource: Wikipedia.

Last Major Revision: Nov 2008

Battleship Wisconsin (BB-64) Interactive Map


United States battleship USS Wisconsin at the Pearl Harbor Naval Base tying up alongside the hulk of the battleship Oklahoma, which had been decommissioned just two months earlier, 11 Nov 1944.USS Wisconsin in the western Pacific Ocean, circa Dec 1944-Aug 1945; note Essex-class carrier in backgroundOS2U Kingfisher aircraft on the fantail of USS New Jersey or USS Wisconsin, off Taiwan, 18 Jan 1945; note 16-inch guns in foreground and USS Hornet in backgroundBattleship Wisconsin off Norfolk, Virginia, United States, circa 1950s
See all 22 photographs of Battleship Wisconsin (BB-64)

Wisconsin Operational Timeline

12 Jun 1940 The order for the construction of battleships Missouri and Wisconsin was issued.
16 Apr 1944 Wisconsin was commissioned into service.
7 Jul 1944 USS Wisconsin departed Norfolk, Virginia, United States for Trinidad in the British West Indies.
24 Sep 1944 USS Wisconsin departed Philadelphia Navy Yard in Pennsylvania, United States.
27 Sep 1944 Battleship USS Wisconsin, with cruiser USS Pasadena, departed Delaware Bay, United States bound for the Panama Canal and the Pacific.
2 Oct 1944 USS Wisconsin was attached to the US Navy Pacific Fleet.
9 Dec 1944 USS Wisconsin was attached to the US Navy Third Fleet.
18 Dec 1944 Many ships from the United States Third Fleet, Task Force 38 sailed into Typhoon Cobra in the Philippine Sea. Three destroyers and 790 men were lost.
17 Feb 1945 USS Wisconsin arrived off Iwo Jima, Japan and bombarded Japanese positions on the island.
25 Feb 1945 USS Wisconsin escorted carriers as the carrier aircraft attacked Hachino, Japan.
24 Mar 1945 USS Wisconsin bombarded Okinawa, Japan.
9 Jun 1945 USS Wisconsin was designated a training ship for a cruise to Britain, France, and Cuba.
13 Jun 1945 USS Wisconsin arrived at Leyte Gulf, Philippine Islands for repairs.
1 Jul 1945 USS Wisconsin completed her repairs at Leyte Gulf, Philippine Islands.
15 Jul 1945 American battleships USS Iowa, USS Missouri, and USS Wisconsin bombarded industrial targets at Muroran, Hokkaido, Japan; the main targets were Wanishi Iron Works plants and the Muroran Works. From the air, American naval aircraft attacked northern Honshu and Hokkaido, destroying railways and coal ferries. 104 US Army P-51 fighters based in Iwo Jima Meiji, Kagamigahara, Kowa, Akenogahara, Nagoya, and Suzuko, Japan. B-24 bombers attacked Tomitaka, Usa, Kikaiga-shima, Amami Islands, Yaku-shima, Osumi Islands, and Tamega Island. After sun down, American B-29 bombers mined Japanese waters at Naoetsu and Niigata and Korean waters at Najin, Busan, and Wonsan, while other B-29 bombers attacked and seriously damaged the Nippon Oil Company facilities at Kudamatsu in southwestern Japan.
18 Jul 1945 American battleships USS North Carolina, USS Alabama, USS Iowa, USS Missouri, and USS Wisconsin and British battleship HMS King George V bombarded Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan with 2,000 shells; the Taga Works and Mito Works of Hitachi Manufacturing Company were moderately damaged, and the Yamate Plant and the copper refining plants of Hitachi Mine were lightly damaged; civilian housing areas were also attacked, causing many deaths. Japanese battleship Nagato was damaged in port at Yokosuka, Japan by aircraft from carrier USS Shangri-La; a Japanese destroyer, a submarine, and three smaller vessels were sunk during the attack on Yokosuka. Aircraft from USS Yorktown struck the Tokyo area. P-47 Thunderbolt and P-51 Mustang aircraft of US Far East Air Forces attacked various targets on Kyushu and the Ryukyu Islands, Japan, focusing largely on communications lines, bridges, shipping, and population centers.
5 Sep 1945 USS Wisconsin arrived in Tokyo Bay, Japan.
15 Oct 1945 USS Wisconsin arrived at San Francisco, California, United States.
18 Jan 1946 USS Wisconsin arrived at Hampton Roads, Virginia, United States.
2 Dec 1946 USS Wisconsin arrived at Hampton Roads, Virginia, United States.
1 Jul 1948 Wisconsin was decommissioned from service.
3 Mar 1951 USS Wisconsin was recommissioned into service.
9 Jan 1952 Korean President Syngman Rhee and his wife embarked USS Wisconsin off Busan, Korea.
10 Jan 1952 Korean President Syngman Rhee and his wife disembarked USS Wisconsin off Busan, Korea.
26 Feb 1952 USS Wisconsin hosted Korean Chief of Naval Operations Vice Admiral Shon, US Ambassador J. J. Muccio, and British Royal Navy Rear Admiral Scott-Montcrief off Busan, Korea.
15 Mar 1952 USS Wisconsin was hit by enemy fire off Korea, wounding three men.
19 Apr 1952 USS Wisconsin arrived at Long Beach, California, United States.
25 Aug 1953 USS Wisconsin participated in the NATO exercise Operation Mainbrace off Scotland, United Kingdom.
12 Oct 1953 USS Wisconsin was named the flagship of the Seventh Fleet based in Japan.
1 Apr 1954 USS Wisconsin was relieved as the flagship of the Seventh Fleet based in Japan.
11 Jun 1954 USS Wisconsin began a scheduled overhaul at Norfolk Navy Yard, Virginia, United States.
12 Jul 1954 USS Wisconsin completed her scheduled overhaul at Norfolk Navy Yard, Virginia, United States.
6 May 1956 USS Wisconsin collided with destroyer USS Eaton, causing extensive damage to her bow.
8 Mar 1958 USS Wisconsin was decommissioned from service at Bayonne, New Jersey, United States.
22 Oct 1988 USS Wisconsin was recommissioned into service with Captain Jerry M. Blesch in command.
23 Aug 1990 USS Wisconsin arrived at Persian Gulf in the Middle East.
15 Jan 1991 USS Wisconsin launched Tomahawk cruise missiles at Iraqi positions.
6 Feb 1991 USS Wisconsin bombarded Iraqi positions in southern Kuwait, using an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle as a spotter for combat for the first time.
28 Mar 1991 USS Wisconsin returned to the United States.
30 Sep 1991 USS Wisconsin was decommissioned from service.
15 Oct 1996 Battleship Wisconsin arrived at Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
7 Dec 2000 Battleship Wisconsin arrived at Portsmouth, Virginia, United States under tow.
16 Apr 2001 Battleship Wisconsin hosted tourists for the first time at Hampton Roads Naval Museum in Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
17 Mar 2006 Already a museum ship at Norfolk, Virginia, United States, battleship Wisconsin was removed from the US Navy reserve fleet roster.

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anonymous says:
23 Apr 2006 11:11:10 AM

This is longest battleship ever made.
2. Anonymous says:
7 Mar 2011 02:41:27 PM

My great-grandfather was on this ship in the early 1940's. He doesn't ever talk about it, but he is proud of it. When I did a project on it in high schoo, he was so thrilled. This ship gave him some of the best memories of hi life.It means a lot to his whole family.
3. Anonymous says:
5 Jun 2012 03:22:22 PM

my dad george nole past away three days ago.i way wondering if anyone knew him? he is from new jersey
4. Edward Sisson says:
17 Aug 2012 01:03:42 PM

The first "recommission" date was 3 Mar 1951, not the later 1988 recommission date that was accidently inserted in this spot as well as in the later spot.
5. Commenter identity confirmed C. Peter Chen says:
17 Aug 2012 01:37:39 PM

Thanks Edward, the first recommission date has been corrected.
6. Bonnie Joyner says:
20 Feb 2013 07:09:10 PM

My father Robert Geddings Joyner was a plank owner on the USS Wisconsin. He was a gunner on the third turret. Like many others who served on this great ship, he didn't talk too much about his experience except his dislike for the typhoons.
7. P Stryke says:
12 Mar 2013 01:43:10 PM

My dad was also a plank owner, he passed in 2010, but he loved that ship. He was a radio operator. He always told stories of a typhoon that dipped him in the ocean from three decks up. I miss those stories.
8. Frank says:
3 Apr 2016 07:46:27 AM

My grandfather was on this battleship during WW2. He always talked about his few days shore leave in what i believe was Philippines. Does anyone know what beach that would have been or area? Also, In Tokyo did the USS Wisconsin port at Yokoska?
Thanks for any help
9. Kathy Hill says:
9 Jan 2019 01:25:22 PM

My dad Bascom D Williams is also a plank holder passed away 2000 was hurt but l don’t know how fought in WW2 and Korean war
10. Ken Bober says:
4 Mar 2019 03:28:08 PM

My grandfather was a gunner's mate on one of the main 16inch turrets and looking for more information on his service. William Collins passed in March of 2008 and he never talked much about his service. He also was on a tanker ship that was torpedoed in the Caribbean by a u-boat. Only survived due to napping on the deck. Dont know the tanker name. Any information would help.
26 May 2020 04:19:34 PM

My Dad was on the Wisconsin .I have a picture of him and a few of his mates and Officers dated 1944 He said a Japanese plane hit the side of the ship and he got hit from the debris. Where ca I find where might of took place
12. Commenter identity confirmed David Stubblebine says:
26 May 2020 05:47:12 PM

Fred Krickbaum (above):
Wisconsin Muster Rolls confirm Frederick W. Krickbaum was aboard from Apr 1944 into 1946. Wisconsin war histories, however, do not mention the ship being struck by any Japanese airplanes. Wisconsin saw a lot of action around Okinawa in Mar & Apr 1945 where special attacks were the thickest so she was on hand for many such attacks but was never hit herself.

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More on Wisconsin
Event(s) Participated:
» Philippines Campaign, Phase 2
» Typhoon Cobra
» Raid into the South China Sea
» Battle of Iwo Jima
» Okinawa Campaign
» Preparations for Invasion of Japan

Battleship Wisconsin (BB-64) Photo Gallery
United States battleship USS Wisconsin at the Pearl Harbor Naval Base tying up alongside the hulk of the battleship Oklahoma, which had been decommissioned just two months earlier, 11 Nov 1944.
See all 22 photographs of Battleship Wisconsin (BB-64)

Famous WW2 Quote
"Among the men who fought on Iwo Jima, uncommon valor was a common virtue."

Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, 16 Mar 1945

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