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United States' Pennsylvania Class Battleships

Photos

  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-38 Pennsylvania battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship
  • BB-39 Arizona battleship

Design

The design of the Pennsylvania class was a larger Nevada class with two more 14" guns.

Main Armament

Each turret's guns had to be raised and lowered in unison.

Aircraft

The Pennsylvania class has two catapults.

Ships

BB-38 USS Pennsylvania

  • Manufacturer: Newport News, Westinghouse
  • March 16, 1915: Launched.
  • June 1916: Commissioned.
  • June 12, 1916: Commissioned.
  • Flagship of the Fleet.
  • 1928 - 1931: Rebuilt. Tripods replaced by cage masts.
  • 1941: Radar added.
  • December 7, 1941: Slightly damaged during attack on Pearl Harbor.
  • 1942: Mainmast replaced by tower and pole topmast. 5" guns replaced by new turrets.
  • Attu.
  • Gilbert Islands.
  • Kwajalein.
  • Eniwetok.
  • Saipan.
  • Guam.
  • Palau.
  • Leyte.
  • Surigao Strait.
  • Lingayen.
  • August 12, 1945: Damaged by airborne torpedo.

BB-39 USS Arizona

  • Manufacturer: New York Naval Yard
  • March 16, 1914: First keep plate placed.
  • June 19, 1915: Launched.
  • October 1916, October 17, 1916, 4:09PM October 17, 1916: Commissioned.
  • April - July 1919, April 12 - June 20, 1919: Mediterranean.
  • 1921 - 1929: Joined Pacific Fleet.
  • May - June 1922: Overhaul in Bremerton. Four 3" L/50 anti-aircraft guns added.
  • December 4, 1924: Started experiments with refueling at sea with USS Kanawha.
  • July 1926: Awarded most efficient battleship in engineering in fleet.
  • 1928 - 1931, 1929 - 1931, May 25, 1929 - March 3, 1931: Modernized at Norfolk. Superstructure replaced. Bridge expanded. Smokestack made larger. Cage masts replaced by tripod masts.
  • 1931?, March 19 - 29, 1931: On re-commissioning took President Herbert Hoover to West Indies. Then went through Panama Canal to rejoin Pacific Fleet.
  • Spring 1934: Filming of movie Here Comes the Navy with Gloria Stewart, James Cagney, and Pat O'Brien.
  • 1941: Radar added.
  • January 27 - February 3, 1941: Sailed from San Pedro to Pearl Harbor.
  • December 7, 1941: Sunk during Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. 1,177 enlisted and 48 officers perished. 286 enlisted and 51 officers survived.

Usage

World War I

Joined the 6th Squadron in the British Grand Fleet. Used to repatriate American serviceman back home.

Pearl Harbor

The USS Pennsylvania was in dry dock when the Japanese attacked. She was hit by a single bomb.

It is estimated that a single torpedo and eight bombs hit the USS Arizona. The USS Arizona was hit in the forward magazine at 8:10 AM which caused a catastrophic explosion destroying her. 1,104 crew died.

 

Specifications

  Pennsylvania Class
Crew 915
Physical Characteristics  
Displacement 31,400 tons
Displacement - Loaded 33,088 tons
Length - Over All 608'
185.4 m
Lenght - Water Line 600'
182.9 m
Beam 97' 1"
29.6 m
Draft / Height 28' 10"
8.8 m
Performance  
Speed 21 knots
Range at 10 knots 8,000 nautical miles
Armament 14": Four triple turrets
Secondary 5": 22
3": 4
Torpedo Tubes - Submerged 21": 2
Aircraft None
Armor  
Barbettes 13"
Belt 13.5"
Bulkheads 13"
Control Tower 16"
Deck 3"
Turrets 18"
Engines  
Boilers Babcock & Wilcox: 12
Shafts 4
Turbines Curtis
Oil 2,322 tons
  Pennsylvania Class 1931
Crew 1,052
Physical Characteristics  
Displacement 34,823 tons
Displacement - Loaded 35,929 tons
Beam 106' 2"
Performance  
Speed 21 knots
Armament 14" triple mounts: 4
5": 12
Anti-Aircraft 5": 8
0.5" Machine Guns: 8
Aircraft 3
Armor  
Main Deck +1.5"
Engines  
Boilers Bureau Express: 6
Shafts 4
Turbines Westinghouse Geared
Oil 3,692 tons
  USS Arizona
Crew 2,290
Physical Characteristics  
Displacement 32,600 tons
Displacement - Loaded 36,500 tons
Length 608'
185.32 m
Beam 97'
29.56 m
Draft / Height 28' 9"
8.76 m
Performance  
Speed 21 knots
Armament 14": 12
Secondary 5", 127 mm: 12
Anti-Aircraft 0.5", 12.7 mm: 8
Aircraft 3
Armor  
Belt 14"
Turrets 9 - 18"
Engines  
Shafts 4
Turbines Geared Steam
Parsons
HP 33,500
  USS Arizona, October 1916
Crew 1,031 Enlisted, 72 Marines, 56 Officers
Physical Characteristics  
Displacement 31,400 tons
Displacement - Loaded 35,852 tons
Length 608'
Length - Waterline 600'
Beam 97' 0.5"
Draft / Height 28' 10"
Draft / Height - Full Load 29' 8.25"
Performance  
Speed 21 knots
Range at 19 knots 3,240 nautical miles
Range at 15 knots 4,750 nautical miles
Range at 10 knots 6,950 nautical miles
Armament 14" L/45: 4 triple turrets
Secondary 5" L/51: 22
Anti-Aircraft 3" L/50: 4
.30 cal: 2
Torpedo Tubes - Submerged 21": 2
Saluting 3 pdr: 4
Armor  
Barbettes 4.5" - 13"
Belt 8" - 13.5"
Conning Tower 6" - 12"
Decks 0.98" - 2.94"
Torpedo Bulkheads 0.97" - 1.47"
Turrets - Front 18"
Turrets - Rear 9"
Turrets - Side 9" - 10"
Turrets - Top 5"
Engines  
Boilers Babcock and Wilcox: 12
Shafts 4
Turbines Parsons: 8
HP 34,000
Propellers 4: 4 blade, 12' 1.5" diameter
Fuel 694,830 gallons
  USS Arizona, March 1931
Crew 1,639 Enlisted, 92 Officers
Physical Characteristics  
Displacement 34,207 tons
Displacement - Loaded 37,645 tons
Length 608'
Length - Waterline 600'
Beam 106' 2.75"
Draft / Height 28' 10"
Draft / Height - Full Load 30' 1.75"
Performance  
Speed 21.23 knots
Range at 20 knots 8,500 nautical miles
Range at 15 knots 13,600 nautical miles
Armament 14" L/45: 4 triple turrets
Secondary 5" L/51: 12
Anti-Aircraft 5" L/25: 8
0.5 cal: 8
Saluting 3 pdr: 3
Armor  
Decks Added 1.7"
Engines  
Boilers Bureau Express: 6
Turbines Westinghouse: 4
Parsons: 4
HP 35,081
Propellers 4 three blade, 12' 7" diameter
Fuel 6,180 tons

Sources:

  1. US Warships of World War 2, Paul H. Silverstone, 1965
  2. Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922-1946, Robert Gardiner, 1987
  3. Janes' Fighting Ships of World War II, 1989
  4. Battleships of World War Two an International Encyclopedia, M. J. Whitley, 1998
  5. The Encyclopedia of Weapons of World War II, Chris Bishop, 1998
  6. Battleship Arizona An Illustrated History, Paul Stillwell, 1991
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site