Boston Navy Yard

The Boston Navy Yard, originally called the Charlestown Navy Yard and later Boston Naval Shipyard, was one of the oldest shipbuilding facilities in the United States Navy. It was established in 1801 as part of the recent establishment of the new U.S. Department of the Navy in 1798. After 175 years of military service, it was decommissioned as a naval installation on 1 July 1974.

The 30-acre (12 ha) property is administered by the National Park Service, becoming part of Boston National Historical Park. Enough of the yard remains in operation to support the moored USS Constitution ("Old Ironsides") of 1797, built as one of the original six heavy frigates for the revived American navy, and the oldest warship still commissioned in the United States Navy. USS Cassin Young (DD-793), a 1943 World War II-era Fletcher-class destroyer serving as a museum ship, is also berthed here. The museum area includes a dock which is a stop on the MBTA Boat water transport system. Among local people in the area and the National Park Service, it is still known as the Charlestown Navy Yard.[2]

The South Boston Naval Annex was located along the waterfront in South Boston.

Boston Naval Shipyard
Charlestown Navy Yard Mystic Wharf Map 1912
1912 Map of the Charlestown Navy Yard and Mystic Wharf
LocationSoutheast of Chelsea Street, Charlestown, Boston, Massachusetts
Coordinates42°22′34″N 71°3′9″W / 42.37611°N 71.05250°WCoordinates: 42°22′34″N 71°3′9″W / 42.37611°N 71.05250°W
Built1800
ArchitectAlexander Parris, et al.
NRHP reference #66000134[1]
Added to NRHP15 November 1966
Boston Navy Shipyard
Boston, Massachusetts
TypeShipyard
Site information
Controlled byUnited States Navy
Site history
Built1800
In use1801–1975

History

The earliest naval shipbuilding activities in Charlestown, Massachusetts across the Charles River and Boston harbor to the north from the city of Boston, began during the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783). The land for the Charlestown Navy Yard was purchased by the United States government in 1800 and the yard itself established shortly thereafter. The yard built the first U.S. ship of the line, "USS Independence", but was primarily a repair and storage facility until the 1890s, when it started to build steel ships for the "New Navy". By then, it was called the Boston Navy Yard.

On 24 June 1833, the staff and dignitaries including then Vice President Martin Van Buren, Secretary of War Lewis Cass, Secretary of the Navy Levi Woodbury, and many Massachusetts officials, witnessed "one of the great events of American naval history": the early United States frigate Constitution was inaugurating the first naval drydock in New England designed by prominent civil engineer Loammi Baldwin, Jr.[3]

The ropewalk supplied cordage used in the Navy from the time it opened in 1837 until the Yard closed in 1975. After the Civil War (1861-1865), the Yard was downgraded to an Equipment and Recruit Facility.[4]

In the late 1880s and 1890s, the Navy began expanding again bringing into service new modern steel hulled steam-powered warships and that brought new life to the Yard. In the first years of the 20th century, a second drydock was added. During World War II (1939/1941-1945), it worked to fix British Royal Navy warships and merchant transports damaged by the Nazi Germans when crossing the North Atlantic Ocean. On 27 September 1941—Liberty Fleet Day—Boston launched two destroyers, the USS Cowie and the USS Knight. Even before the U.S. entered the Second World War after the Pearl Harbor attack on December 7th, 1941, a month before in November, Boston was one of four United States naval shipyards selected to build Captain class frigates under the Lend-Lease military assistance program for the Royal Navy. Since the United States was at war when these ships were finally completed, some were later requisitioned and used by the United States Navy as destroyer escorts.[5] In the post war period, the shipyard modified World War II ships for Cold War (1945-1991) service through Fleet Rehabilitation and Modernization (FRAM). The Korean War (1950-1953), and Vietnam War (1964-1975) did not bring much work to the Yard since it was so far from the fighting.

Ships built at Boston Navy Yard

Aerial view of the Boston Naval Shipyard in April 1960
Aerial view of the Boston Navy Yard in April 1960.
South Boston Naval Annex and South Boston Army Base, circa 1958
The South Boston Naval Annex, circa 1958

Current use

The Yard closed after the Vietnam War. When ideas were floated for redevelopment of the yard, one popular idea was to have the yard turned into a construction yard for oil tankers.[53] Ultimately, these plans fell through, and the site became part of the Boston National Historical Park. Its mission is, "to interpret the art and history of naval shipbuilding".[4]

The Boston Navy Yard hosts many attractions. The fully commissioned USS Constitution and the museum ship USS Cassin Young (DD-793) are tied up at Pier 1 and open to the public.[54] The Navy Yard also hosts the USS Constitution Museum. Dry Dock No. 1 is still used for ship maintenance for the Constitution and the Cassin Young.[55] In May 2015, the Constitution entered the dry dock for three years of repairs.[56]

The Yard is toward the north end of the Freedom Trail and is seen by thousands every year. The MBTA Boat stops at nearby Pier 4, providing easy visitor access to the Yard.

The campus of the MGH Institute of Health Professions occupies seven buildings in the Yard, including classroom, office, and clinical space.

Gallery

USS Cassin Young 2007

USS Cassin Young berthed at the Boston Navy Yard

Dry Dock 1

A view of the dry dock without water

Boston Dry Dock

Cassin Young in drydock

USS Cassin Young in Dry Dock

Cassin Young in dry dock at night

See also

References

  1. ^ National Park Service (23 January 2007). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
  2. ^ Charlestown Navy Yard, National Park Service Archived 7 December 2004 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Historic Naval Ships Association Archived 1 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ a b Charlestown Navy Yard: The Shipyard on the Charles Archived 1 January 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Franklin, Bruce Hampton (1999) The Buckley-class Destroyer Escorts Naval Institute Press ISBN 1-55750-280-3 p.7
  6. ^ "Independence". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  7. ^ "Boston". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 24 July 2006. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  8. ^ "Warren". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 12 April 2011. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  9. ^ "Falmouth". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 30 October 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  10. ^ "Cyane". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 13 March 2004. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  11. ^ "Marion". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 14 March 2004. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  12. ^ "Cumberland". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 4 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  13. ^ "Plymouth". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 12 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  14. ^ "Vermont". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  15. ^ "Hartford". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 12 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  16. ^ "Narragansett". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 17 March 2004. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  17. ^ "Wachusett". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  18. ^ "Housatonic". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  19. ^ "Maratanza". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 14 December 2013. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  20. ^ "Canandaigua". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 15 March 2004. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  21. ^ "Tioga". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 14 December 2013. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  22. ^ "Genesee". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 21 June 2004. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  23. ^ "Monadnock". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 29 March 2004. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  24. ^ "Pequot". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 30 September 2004. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  25. ^ "Saco". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 16 March 2004. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  26. ^ "Winooski". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 23 October 2012. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  27. ^ "Ammonoosuc". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 25 February 2004. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
  28. ^ "Guerriere". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 14 March 2004. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  29. ^ "Worcester". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  30. ^ "Nantasket". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 15 March 2004. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  31. ^ "Alaska". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 2 March 2012. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  32. ^ "Vandalia". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  33. ^ "Bridge". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 24 July 2006. Retrieved 14 December 2013.
  34. ^ "Brazos". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Retrieved 14 December 2013.
  35. ^ "Neches". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 29 March 2004. Retrieved 14 December 2013.
  36. ^ "Pecos". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. United States Navy. Archived from the original on 15 December 2013. Retrieved 14 December 2013.
  37. ^ a b Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.114
  38. ^ a b Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.118
  39. ^ a b c d Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.124
  40. ^ a b c d Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.126
  41. ^ a b Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.129
  42. ^ a b c d Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.132
  43. ^ a b c d e f g h i Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.135
  44. ^ a b c d e f Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.140
  45. ^ a b c Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.141
  46. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae Lenton, H.T. & Colledge, J.J. (1968) British and Dominion Warships of World War II Doubleday pp.242–245
  47. ^ a b c d e Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.153
  48. ^ a b c d e f g h Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.155
  49. ^ a b c d e f g h Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.157
  50. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company p.175
  51. ^ a b c d Bauer, K. Jack; Roberts, Stephen S. (1991). Register of Ships of the U.S. Navy, 1775-1990: Major Combatants. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. p. 281. ISBN 0-313-26202-0.
  52. ^ a b c d Silverstone, Paul H. U.S. Warships of World War II (1968) Doubleday & Company pp.263&266
  53. ^ "NEW ENGLAND: Bases for Sale". New England: Time, Inc. 1 July 1974. Retrieved 4 November 2009.
  54. ^ As Constitution is a US Navy ship, consult her official website Archived 13 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine before visiting.
  55. ^ http://archive.hnsa.org/conf2004/papers/carlson.htm
  56. ^ http://news.usni.org/2015/05/19/uss-constitution-enters-dry-dock-for-three-years-of-repairs

External links

Boston Naval Yard Fuel Depot Annex

The Boston Naval Yard Fuel Depot Annex, was a United States Navy fuel depot annex located in East Boston, Massachusetts. It was the annex of Boston Navy Yard.

Chelsea Naval Annex

The Chelsea Naval Annex was a United States Navy shipyard annex located in Chelsea, Massachusetts. It was an annex of the Boston Navy Yard. During its existence, it operated next to Chelsea Naval Hospital.

East Boston Naval Annex

The East Boston Naval Annex, was United States Navy shipyard annex located in East Boston. It was the annex of the Boston Navy Yard.

HMS Goodson (K480)

HMS Goodson (K480), originally USS George (DE-276), was an Evarts class destroyer escort, assigned to the United Kingdom under the lend-lease.

The ship was laid down as George on 20 May 1943 at the Boston Navy Yard, and named after Eugene Frank George, posthumously awarded the Navy Cross at Guadalcanal.

She was assigned to the United Kingdom under the lend-lease on 22 June 1943; launched on 8 July 1943; transferred to the United Kingdom on 9 October 1943; and commissioned in the British Royal Navy as HMS Goodson.

During the remainder of World War II, she served on escort and patrol duty in the Atlantic and along the English coast. She supported the Allied Invasion of Europe at Normandy on 6 June 1944. Damaged 25 June by U-984 commanded by Heinz Sieder, she was returned to the United States Navy on 21 October. On 9 January 1947 she was sold to John Lee of Belfast, Northern Ireland.

A subsequent vessel named George was launched 14 August 1943 at the Defoe Shipbuilding Company, Bay City, Michigan.

USS Alfred Wolf (DE-544)

USS Alfred Wolf (DE-544) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was cancelled before completion. She was named after Alfred Wolf, a U.S. Navy sailor killed during World War II.

The name Alfred Wolf was assigned to the ship on 26 October 1943. Her keel was laid at the Boston Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts, on 9 December 1943.Due to changes in World War II ship construction priorities, the construction of Alfred Wolf was suspended on 10 June 1944, and cancelled altogether on 5 September 1944. Subsequently, the incomplete ship was scrapped on the building ways.

USS Benner (DE-551)

USS Benner (DE-551) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never built.

Benner was to have been built at the Boston Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts, but her construction contract was cancelled on 10 June 1944 before construction could begin.

The name Benner was reassigned to the destroyer USS Benner (DD-807).

USS Carpellotti (DE-548)

USS Carpellotti (DE-548) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never completed.

Plans called for Carpellotti to be built at the Boston Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts. The contract for her construction was cancelled in 1944 before she could be launched.

The name Carpellotti was reassigned to the destroyer escort USS Carpellotti (DE-720), which was converted during construction into the fast transport USS Carpellotti (APD-136).

USS Charles R. Ware (DE-547)

USS Charles R. Ware (DE-547) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never built.

Charles R. Ware was planned to be built at the Boston Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts. Her construction contract was cancelled in 1944 before her construction could begin.

The name Charles R. Ware was reassigned to the destroyer USS Charles R. Ware (DD-865).

USS Dennis J. Buckley (DE-553)

USS Dennis J. Buckley (DE-553) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never completed.

Plans called for Dennis J. Buckley to be built at the Boston Navy Yard at Boston, Massachusetts. Her construction contract was cancelled on 10 June 1944 before she could be launched.

The name Dennis J. Buckley was reassigned to the destroyer USS Dennis J. Buckley (DD-808).

USS Everett F. Larson (DE-554)

USS Everett F. Larson (DE-554) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never completed.

The name Everett F. Larson was assigned to DE-554 on 30 November 1943. Plans called for her to be built at the Boston Navy Yard at Boston, Massachusetts. Her construction contract was cancelled on 10 June 1944.

The name Everett F. Larson was reassigned to the destroyer USS Everett F. Larson (DD-830).

USS Groves (DE-543)

USS Groves (DE-543) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never completed.

Groves was laid down at the Boston Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts. Her construction was cancelled on 5 September 1944 before she could be launched. The incomplete ship was scrapped.

USS Harold J. Ellison (DE-545)

USS Harold J. Ellison (DE-545) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never completed.

Harold J. Ellison's keel was laid at the Boston Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts. However, her construction was cancelled on 10 June 1944 before she could be launched. The incomplete ship was scrapped.

The name Harold J. Ellison was reassigned to the destroyer USS Harold J. Ellison (DD-864).

USS Isherwood (DD-284)

USS Isherwood (DD-284) was a Clemson-class destroyer in the United States Navy following World War I. She was named for Rear Admiral Benjamin F. Isherwood.

Isherwood was launched on 10 September 1919 by the Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation, Squantum, Massachusetts; sponsored by Mrs. R. C. Walling; and commissioned on 4 December 1919 at the Boston Navy Yard, Lieutenant Commander W. D. Brereton in command.

USS LST-310

USS LST-310 was one of 390 tank landing ships (LSTs) built for the United States Navy during World War II.

LST-310 was laid down on 22 September 1942 at the Boston Navy Yard; launched on 23 November 1942; sponsored by Mrs. Inga M. Gustavson; and commissioned on 20 January 1943 with Lieutenant W. P. Lawless, USNR, in command.

USS Oswald A. Powers (DE-542)

USS Oswald A. Powers (DE-542) was a United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort launched during World War II but never completed.

The name Oswald A. Powers was assigned to DE–542 on 28 September 1943. Oswald A. Powers was laid down at the Boston Navy Yard at Boston, Massachusetts, on 18 November 1943 and launched on 17 December 1943, sponsored by Mrs. Ella M. Powers, mother of Ensign Oswald A. Powers, the ship's namesake.

Construction of Oswald A. Powers was suspended before she could be completed. On 30 August 1945, she was assigned to the Atlantic Inactive Fleet in an incomplete state. On 7 January 1946, the contract for her construction was cancelled, and the incomplete ship was sold on 17 June 1947 to the John J. Duane Company of Quincy, Massachusetts, for scrapping.

USS Rogers Blood (DE-555)

USS Rogers Blood (DE-555) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never completed.

Plans called for Rogers Blood to be built at the Boston Navy Yard at Boston, Massachusetts. The contract for her construction was cancelled in 1944.

The name Rogers Blood was reassigned to the destroyer escort USS Rogers Blood (DE-605), which was converted during construction into the fast transport USS Rogers Blood (APD-115) and was in commission as such from 1945 to 1946.

USS Sheehan (DE-541)

USS Sheehan (DE-541) was a United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort launched during World War II but never completed.

Sheehan was laid down at Boston Navy Yard at Boston, Massachusetts, on 8 November 1943 and launched on 17 December 1943, sponsored by Mrs. Catherine Sheehan, mother of Chief Quartermaster John Francis Sheehan, the ship's namesake.

Construction of Sheehan was suspended before she could be completed. On 30 August 1945, she was assigned to the Atlantic Inactive Fleet in an incomplete state. On 7 January 1946, the contract for her construction was cancelled, and the incomplete ship was sold on 2 July 1946 to the John J. Duane Company of Quincy, Massachusetts, for scrapping.

USS William M. Wood (DE-557)

USS William M. Wood (DE-557) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never built.

William M. Wood was to have been built at the Boston Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts. Her construction contract was cancelled on 10 June 1944.

The name William M. Wood was reassigned to the destroyer USS William M. Wood (DD-715).

USS William R. Rush (DE-556)

USS William R. Rush (DE-556) was a proposed World War II United States Navy John C. Butler-class destroyer escort that was never completed.

William R. Rush was to have been built at the Boston Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts. Her construction contract was cancelled on 10 June 1944.

The name William R. Rush was reassigned to the destroyer USS William R. Rush (DD-714).

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