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  USS Nevada BB-36
USN
Nevada Class Battleship

30,500 Tons (WWII)
583 x 95' 2.5" x 28' 6"
10 × 14" 45 cal guns
21 × 5" guns
2 or 4 × 21' torpedo tubes
2 × floatplanes
1 × catapult (1942)

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USN circa 1916

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USN December 7, 1941

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USN February 19, 1942
Ship History
Built by Fore River Shipbuilding Company, Quincy, Massachusetts. Laid down November 4, 1912 as the lead ship of the Nevada Class Battleship. Launched July 11, 1914 as USS Nevada (BB-36) named after the State of Nevada sponsored by Miss Eleanor Anne Seibert, niece of Governor Tasker Oddie of Nevada and descendant of Secretary of the Navy Benjamin Stoddert. Commission March 11, 1916 with Captain William S. Sims in command.

The launch was also attended by several prominent members of the government, including Governor Oddie, Governor David I. Walsh of Massachusetts, Senator Key Pittman of Nevada, Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels and Assistant Secretary of the Navy Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Afterwards, Nevada joined the U.S. Atlantic Fleet in Newport, Rhode Island on May 26, 1916 and operated along the east coast and in the Caribbean until World War I. After training gunners out of Norfolk, Virginia, she sailed 13 August 1918 to serve with the British Grand Fleet, arriving Bantry Bay, Ireland August 23, 1916. She made a sweep through the North Sea and escorted the transport George Washington, with U. S. President Woodrow Wilson embarked during the last day of her passage into Brest, France, before sailing for home December 14, 1916.

Nevada served in both Atlantic and Pacific Fleets in the period between the wars. In September 1922 she represented the United States in Rio de Janeiro for the Centennial of Brazilian Independence. From July to September 1925, she participated in the U.S. Fleet's goodwill cruise to Australia and New Zealand, which demonstrated to these allies, and to the Japanese, US ability to make a self-supported cruise to a distance equal to that to Japan. Modernized at Norfolk Naval Shipyard between August 1927 and January 1930, Nevada served in the Pacific Fleet for the next decade.

On December 4, 1941 at night USS Arizona (BB-39), USS Oklahoma (BB-37) and USS Nevada conduct a training and live fire exercise then returned on December 5, 1941 in the morning.

Pearl Harbor
On December 7 1941 Nevada was moored at Battleship Row inside Pearl Harbor off Ford Island. During the Japanese attack against Pearl Harbor, her gunners opened fire as her engineers got up steam in the boiler but was struck by one or possibly two aerial torpedoes plus possibly three bombs. Nevada was able to get underway and was trying to escape Pearl Harbor and hit again. Fearing she might sink into the channel and might block the entrance, she was beached at Hospital Point. During the Japanese attack, Nevada suffered 50 killed and 109 wounded.

Repair
On February 12 1942 refloated and repaired at Pearl Harbor and Puget Sound Navy Yard.

Alaska Campaign
Afterwards, departed to provide fire support for operations off Attu Island between May 11, 1943 to May 18, 1943.

European Service
In June 1943 departed via the Panama Canal for further modernization at Norfolk Navy Yard. In April 1944 reached British waters and participated in the Allied invasion of Normandy in France. Between June 6, 1944 until June 17, 1944 provided fire support and again on June 25, 1944 against fortifications on the Cherbourg Peninsula and targets as far as 17 miles inland to break up German concentrations and counterattacks. Shore batteries straddled her 27 times, but failed to diminish her accurate fire.

During the Allied landings in Southern France, Nevada provided gun fire support between August 15 - September 25, 1944. Dueled with shore batteries at Toulon armed with 13.4" guns taken from scuttled French battleships. Afterwards, refit in New York including the relining of her gun barrels, then departed for the Pacific.

Iwo Jima
On February 16, 1945 arrived off Iwo Jima to provide gunfire support until March 7, 1945.

Okinawa and Japan
On March 24, 1945 participated pre-invasion bombardment of Okinawa, pounding targets including airfields, shore defenses, supply dumps, and troop concentrations. On March 27, 1945 a kamikaze plane killed eleven crewmen and damaged one of the main battery turrets. On April 5, 1945 shore battery fire killed two more crewmen.

Serving off Okinawa until 30 June, from 10 July to 7 August she ranged with the 3rd Fleet which not only bombed the Japanese home islands from the air, but came within range for Nevada's guns during the closing days of the war. Nevada received 7 battle stars for World War II service.

Post War
Returning to Pearl Harbor after a brief occupation duty in Tokyo Bay, Nevada was assigned as a target ship for the atomic experiments at Bikini Atoll. As the aiming point for the air dropped bomb, Nevada was painted red with white gun barrels and gunwales for higher visibility.

On July 1, 1946 while anchored at Bikini Atoll during atomic bomb test "Able", B-29 "Dave's Dream" 44-27354 released bomb "Gilda" that missed, exploding 710 yards west of Nevada and only damaged the vessel. Afterwards, returned to Pearl Harbor and decommission August 29, 1946.

Sinking History
On July 31, 1948 sunk by gunfire and aerial torpedoes fired by US Navy (USN) warships as a target vessel.

References
NavSource - BB-36 USS Nevada (BB-36)

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Last Updated
August 4, 2020

 

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