The commissioning of the submarine New Hampshire fits in the long, historical relationship between Portsmouth, the Shipyard and the Navy. Portsmouth and John Paul Jones helped build the original US Navy. The battleship New Hampshire was christened by Gov John McLane who hosted the Portsmouth Peace Treaty negotiations at the Shipyard for President Teddy Roosevelt. TR then gave the "New Hampshire" the honor of leading his Naval Salute welcoming home the Great White Fleet. And the Shipyard has played and continues to play a critical role in the history of the American Submarine - as the gold standard for work done on-time and under-budget.
The First Battleship "New Hampshire"
Constructed: In 1816-1864 at Portsmouth, New Hampshire by the Portsmouth Navy Yard.
Construction details: Built of live oak with copper fastenings believed to have been forged at the Revere Foundry, established by Paul Revere. Fittings are identical to Revere fittings utilized in smaller frigate.
Owners: Mulholland Machinery, Corporation, New York
Home or Hailing Port: New York
Former Name(s) and date(s): Alabama, (1816-1864), New Hampshire (1864-1904), Granite State (1904-1922)
1816 - April 29, the United States Congress authorized funding for nine 74-gun ships-of-the-line.
1818 - Commissioned as the Alabama in presence of President James Monroe.
1825 - Nearly completed, but remained on stocks at the Portsmouth Navy Yard.
1864 - April 23, launched for service in the Civil War, name changed from Alabama to New Hampshire.
1864 - 1866 - Served off Port Royal, South Carolina as a hospital and supply ship.
1866 - June 8, Norfolk, Virginia, began service as a receiving ship.
1876 - April 10, returned to Port Royal.
1881 - Reassigned to Norfolk, Virginia for use as a receiving ship and then to New Port, Rhode Island for use as flagship of the Apprentice Training Squadron..
1893 - Loaned to the New York State Naval Militia as a training ship and armory. Nearly one thousand men who trained aboard the old ship-of-the-line served in the Spanish American War..
1904 - November 30, name changed to Granite State so that New Hampshire could be used for a new battleship..
1918 - Fire broke out in the forecastle and spread to throughout the superstructure. Disaster averted by crew flooding ship's magazine..
1921 - April 23, fire destroyed the warship at the dock.
Three savage operations recovered huge oak timbers from the wreck for the copper with which they were fastened. Over the years, one of New Hampshire's anchors and numerous cannon balls have reportedly been recovered.
The November 2, 1965 edition of the Boston Globe reported that Norwood resident William Kolb planned on recovering artifacts from the vessel while he was manning the "Aqua Cabin" underwater habitat, which was placed in 80 feet of water a short distance form the wreck site by the Hektor Scientific Company of Foxboro, Massachusetts.
The Second Battleship "New Hampshire" (BB-25)
Constructed: In 1905-06 at the New York Shipbuilding Corp. in Camden, New Jersey.
Displacement: 16,000 tons
Speed: 18 knots
Armament: Four 12" guns; eight 8" guns; twelve 7" guns; twenty 3" guns; two 1-pounders; four 21" torpedo tubes
1906 - Launched June 30, sponsored by Miss Hazel E. McLane, daughter of Governor John McLane of New Hampshire
1908 - Commissioned March 19, Capt. Cameron M. Winslow in command. After fitting out at New York, New Hampshire carried a Marine Expeditionary Regiment to Colon, Panama (June 20-26), then made ceremonial visits to Quebec, Portsmouth, New York, and Bridgeport.
Archival stories from the New York Times:
New battleship launched, July 1, 1906:
Prepared to meet Prince in Quebec, June 15, 1908:
USS New Hampshire departs Portsmouth, July 6, 1909
1908-09 - Overhaul at New York and Caribbean exercises were followed by participation in the Naval Review by President Theodore Roosevelt in Hampton Roads (February 22, 1909), welcoming home the "Great White Fleet." 1909-10 - Exercised along the east coast and in the Caribbean, then departed Hampton Roads (November 1, 1910) with the Second Battleship Division for Cherbourg, France and Weymouth, England. Leaving England (December 30, 1910), she returned to the Caribbean.
1911 - Returned to Norfolk (March 10, 1911) to prepare for a second European cruise which took her to Scandinavian, Russian, and German ports. The squadron returned to New England waters (July 13, 1911) to train Naval Academy midshipmen.
1912- Another summer of training off New England. Patrolled off strife-torn Hispaniola in December.
1913 - From June 14 to December 29, New Hampshire protected American interests along the Mexican coast.
1914 - Returned (April 15, 1914) to support the occupation of Vera Cruz. New Hampshire sailed north on June 21 for overhaul at Norfolk, and exercised along the east coast and in the Caribbean.
1915 - Returned to Vera Cruz in August. Arrived in Norfolk (September 30) and operated in northern waters until December 2, 1916, when she sailed for Santo Domingo, where her commanding officer took part in the government of the revolt-torn country.
1917 - Returned to Norfolk in February for overhaul, where she lay when the United States entered World War I. For the next year and a half she trained gunners and engineers in northern coastal waters.
1918 - Began the first of two convoy escort missions (September 15), guarding transports from New York to a rendezvous point off the French coast. On December 24, 1981 she sailed on the first of four voyages bringing veterans home from France to east coast ports.
1919 - Convoy duty completed (June 22, 1919), she was overhauled at Philadelphia.
1920 - Sailed with Academy midshipmen (June 5, 1920) embarked for a cruise through the Panama Canal to Hawaii and west coast ports. She returned to Philadelphia (September 11, 1920) and served as flagship for the special naval force in Haitian waters from October 18, 1920 to January 12, 1921
1921 - Sailed (January 25, 1921) with the remains of Swedish Minister Wilhelm Ekerigren for Stockholm, arriving February 14. She called also at Kiel and Gravesend before returning to Philadelphia March 24, where she was decommissioned (May 21, 1921).
1923 - Sold for scrapping (November 1, 1923) in accordance with the Washington Treaty for the Limitation of Naval Armaments.
The Third Battleship "New Hampshire" (BB-70)
A Montana-class battleship to be named "New Hampshire" was authorized in 1940 but cancelled in 1943 before her keel was laid.
10/19 USS New Hampshire arrived in Portsmouth 11:15 am
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Thru 11/2 Scarecrows of the Port Festival
Downtown merchants present first annual "Scarecrows in the Port" harvest festival, commissioning celebration and welcome to the crew and their families.
10/25/2008 US Navy Commissioning Ceremony, 10 am
10/27/2008 USS New Hampshire departs, 12:20 pm