Friday, June 28, 2013

USS Northampton (CA-26)-- Part 1


The last entry I mentioned David Hughs of Montgomery County, Texas, dying and listed as the county's last Pearl Harbor survivor.  I had never heard of the ship so did some research.

It turns out that the ship wasn't actually there during the attack, being at sea protecting the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise.  The carrier, Northampton and its strike force returned to Pearl Harbor the next day.

The USS Northampton was a heavy cruiser: 600-feet long, 66-foot beam with a crew of 1,100 and mounting nine 8-inch guns in its main battery.  It was commissioned 17 May 1930 and was sunk at the Battle of Tassafarongas 30 November 1942.

As I already mentioned, it was not at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, but returned the following day.  Evidently that still makes Mr. Hughs a Pearl Harbor survivor.

On the 9th, the Enterprise and its force sortied to look for the Japanese fleet.

On February 1, 1942, the Northampton and USS Salt Lake City were sent to bombard Wotje Atoll, a Japanese base.  The two ships destroyed buildings and oil depots on the island and sank two Japanese ships.  On February 24th, they attacked Wake Island.

More to Come.  --GreGen

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