Top: USS Saratoga (CV-3) foreground, USS Enterprise (CV-6) background, conducting flight operations near Guadalcanal in August of 1942
2nd photo: The U.S. fleet at Majuro Atoll in 1944. The USS Enterprise is visible center right, along with four Essex-class carriers, three Independence-class light carriers, two Iowa-class battleships, and many others.
3rd photo; bottom to top: USS Saratoga, USS Enterprise, USS Hornet (CV-12), and USS San Jacinto (CVL-30) docked at Alameda, CA in September of 1945 - about a month and a half after VJ-day. The Hornet is an Essex-class carrier, the 4th of 24 that were built during WWII; named for the Enterprise’s sister ship that was sunk in 1942.
(Aside: Sometimes, ship names are confusing as shit. By the time WWII was over, four Essex-class carriers had been named for carriers sunken earlier in the war (sometimes mere months beforehand!) - the Lexington (CV-16), Yorktown (CV-10), Hornet (CV-12), and Wasp (CV-18). It makes looking up pictures of the correct WWII carrier difficult at times.)
Bottom: USS Enterprise awaits scraping at the New York Naval Shipyard on 22 June 1958. Above is the USS Independence (CV-62), launched two weeks previously and awaiting final outfitting. Independence is the fourth Forrestal-class carrier, America’s first class of “supercarriers”.
The United States possessed seven fleet aircraft carriers at the start of WWII:
- The Lexington (CV-2) and Saratoga (CV-3) were commissioned in 1927. They were converted from battlecruisers to aircraft carriers in 1922, two years into the construction process.
- They were joined 1934 by the Ranger (CV-4), American’s first ship designed as an aircraft carrier from the ground up. It was a relatively small ship compared to both the older Lexington- and newer Yorktown-class carriers.
- The Yorktown-class consisted of the Yorktown (CV-5), the Enterprise (CV-6), and the Hornet (CV-8), commissioned in 1937, 1938, and 1941, respectively.
- The Wasp (CV-7) was commissioned in 1940. It was a scaled-down Yorktown-class; much closer in size and capabilities to the Ranger.
By the end of 1942, over half of them were on the bottom of the ocean. Lexington and Yorktown had been sunk in the early summer, prompting the Wasp to be shifted from the Atlantic to the Pacific. The boost was short lived, however, as the Wasp was torpedoed and sunk less than five weeks after reaching the Pacific theater, and she was joined on the sea floor by the Hornet in October. With the Ranger dedicated to the war in the Atlantic, Enterprise and Saratoga were left as the only American fleet carriers in the Pacific. They had come through the first year of the war in the Pacific battered but intact, and would bear the brunt of the fighting alone for months to come.
But the crews of the two remaining Pacific carriers persevered, and by the end of ‘43, they would be joined by four of the new Essex-class fleet carriers, as well as over a dozen of the “baby flattop” Independence-class light carriers and Cassablanca-class escort carriers. Saratoga and Enterprise, alone, had successfully held the line through one of the most critical periods of the war in the Pacific, but now they had some much-needed support. Despite being older and less-modern than the Essex-class carriers that were being constructed and launched at a ridiculous rate, the two would remain at the front lines for the rest of the war.
While supporting operations on Iwo Jima in February of 1945, Saratoga was struck by five bombs and three Japanese aircraft, wrecking her flight deck. Although the damage was repaired at Pearl Harbor, she was relegated to training status on the west coast for the remaining months of the war. Enterprise was damaged by kamikaze aircraft off of Okinawa in May, and was in Puget Sound for major repairs on VJ day.
So what did we do with these two historic vessels after the war? Arguably the two most important naval vessels in the entire history of the USA; instrumental in halting the Japanese advance in ‘42 and turning the tide of the war in ‘43? We blew up the Saratoga with a nuclear bomb in 1946 just ‘cause we could, and unceremoniously scrapped the Enterprise in 1958 after mothballing it for 11 years.
These are the kind of stupid things I get angry about.
Abandoned Kenworth truck cab
Coolest rat rod around. #rat #ratrod #cummins #turbo #compoundturbos
Photo reblogged from Gun control is keeping your finger off the trigger with 133,207 notes
Creepy and fucking hilarious
Photoset reblogged from Gun control is keeping your finger off the trigger with 5,314 notes
George Harrison would be 70 years old today. See photos of the Beatle through the years.
John Garand demonstrates the loading of the en bloc clip into the magazine of the M1 Garand.
(US National Archives)
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