Tag Archives: bb-62

Black Dragon in need of some help

From the now 76-year-old Battleship New Jersey (BB-62) Museum in Camden, NJ:

New Jersey looking for volunteers

New Jersey looking for volunteers…

The Battleship is looking for volunteers to help restore more than 40,000 square feet of teak deck, which is rotted in some places and completely missing in others.

If you would like to help restore the deck of The World’s Greatest Battleship, please email support@battleshipnewjersey.org or call (856) 966-1652, Extension 127.

2019 Coming in hot!

Happy New Year to one and all, hope yours gets off to a bang.

Battleship USS New Jersey BB-62 firing a six-gun salvo at an enemy troop concentration near Kaesong, Korea, 1 January 1953.

And also a happy 131st birthday to the man, the myth, the legend, John Cantius Garand, the ultimate New Year’s Baby

The Canadian-born engineer worked at Springfield Armory starting from 1919 (a century ago this year) until he retired in 1953, first on a number of full-auto light machine guns, then on his more famous semi-auto in its various forms.

New Jersey gets her barrels back

New Jersey just received three of her historic 16-inch gun barrels that have been stored at Norfolk for more than a half-century.

The 16-inch/50-caliber Mark 7 guns, each weighing 237,000-pounds, were first installed on the USS New Jersey when she was built at the  Philadelphia Navy Yard in the 1940s. While she used them to good effect in the Pacific and off Korea, the worn barrels were replaced by new tubes, which the battleship still has, and the old wartime vintage barrels placed in storage at Norfolk Naval Shipyard’s St. Juliens Creek Annex for the past 60 years. Now, after a $200,000 fundraiser to move three of the 66-foot long guns from Virginia to Camden, New Jersey, the old battleship has some of her original teeth back.

Big J gets one of her lost 40mm mounts back

"USS New Jersey in Vietnam" Painting, Tempera on Paper; by John Charles Roach; 1969; NHHC Accession #: 88-197-CE Launched in 1942, New Jersey (BB-62) saw service in WWII and Korea before being decommissioned in 1957. In 1968 she was reactivated and outfitted to serve as a heavy bombardment ship in Vietnam. At recommissioning, she was the only active battleship in the U.S. Navy. Between late September 1968 and early April 1969, she participated in Operation Sea Dragon, providing offshore gunfire support against inland and coastal targets. Soon thereafter, the Navy decided to reduce heavy bombardment forces in Southeast Asia. New Jersey was again decommissioned in December 1969.

“USS New Jersey in Vietnam” Painting, Tempera on Paper; by John Charles Roach; 1969; NHHC Accession #: 88-197-CE Launched in 1942, New Jersey (BB-62) saw service in WWII and Korea before being decommissioned in 1957. In 1968 she was reactivated and outfitted to serve as a heavy bombardment ship in Vietnam. At recommissioning, she was the only active battleship in the U.S. Navy. Between late September 1968 and early April 1969, she participated in Operation Sea Dragon, providing offshore gunfire support against inland and coastal targets. Soon thereafter, the Navy decided to reduce heavy bombardment forces in Southeast Asia. New Jersey was again decommissioned in December 1969.

When USS New Jersey (BB-62) was built, the wounds of Pearl Harbor were still fresh in the minds of battleship sailors and the new series of capital ships were stacked deep with 40mm and 20mm cannons, designed to fill the sky around the ship with a hurricane of flak to break up Japanese air attacks. The battlewagon carried no less than 80 40mm/56 cal Bofors cannon, arranged in 20 quad mounts. The ship and her crew earned nine battle stars for her World War II service and four for her service in the Korean War before she was put into mothballs in 1957.

The only battleship called in from “red lead row” for service in Vietnam, in 1968 she was stripped of her Bofors cannon– obsolete against jets– and all were destroyed except for one mount that was left as a display at (the now closed) Philadelphia Navy Yard, where she was built.

Now, as part of a crowd-sourced fundraiser to restore the gun and send it to Camden, New Jersey where the battleship has been as a museum ship since 2001, it has been picked up from Philly and moved to the Mahan Collection museum where it will be restored before reunited with the retired naval warship.

More in my column at Guns.com.