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NavSource Online: Battleship Photo Archive

BB-38 USS PENNSYLVANIA
Mare Island Modernization - 1942 / 1943

Radio Call Sign: November - Alpha - Delta - Xray

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Pennsylvania Class Battleship: Displacement 31,400 Tons, Dimensions, 608' 6" (oa) x 97' 1" x 29' 10" (Max).Armament 12 x 14"/45 14 x 5"/51, 4 x 3"/50 2 x 21" tt. Armor, 13 1/2" Belt, 18" Turrets, 3" +2" Decks, 16" Conning Tower. Machinery, 31,500 SHP; Geared Turbines, 4 screws. Speed, 21 Knots, Crew 915.

Operational and Building Data: Laid down by Newport News, Shipbuilding, Newport News, VA., October 27, 1913. Launched 16 March 1915. Commissioned June 12, 1916. Decommissioned August 29, 1946. Stricken February 19, 1948.
Fate: Target During Atomic Bomb Tests, Bikini Atoll, Marshall Islands. Scuttled off Kwajalein Atoll, Marshall Islands, February 10, 1948.
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BB-38 Pennsylvania398kThe Pennsylvania (BB-38) was rebuilt at Mare Island between 4 October 1942 and 5 February 1943 with simplified bridgework. Note the removal of her conning tower and long-base rangefinder was mounted in its place.
A new deckhouse replaced her Mainmast, the after Main Battery Director cupola (Spot 2) being relocated to its top. Provision for dual-purpose fire control was limited to replacement of the two MK.33 by two Mk.37 with atop radar equipment Mk.4.
The bridgework was simplified mainly by the elimination of the previous outside platforms and the turret-top catapult and boat cranes were removed.
Ten quadruple Bofors and fifty-one Oerlikons were mounted.
Note the Twin 40mm superfiring over the Twin 20mm Mount MK.20 Mod.2 atop her #2 Main Battery Triple 14-Inch Turret.
U.S. Navy Photograph and text courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania140kThe proper method of stacking cartridge tanks on deck.U.S. Navy Photograph and text courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania143kStriking 14-Inch powder tanks below aboard a battleship.U.S. Navy Photograph and text courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania433kPhoto taken on 26 February 1942, one of the 1.10" gun tubs while at Mare Island, eventually replaced by the more effective 40mm Bofors.USN photo serial # 1032-42, courtesy of Ed Zajkowski.
BB-38 Pennsylvania264kView of splintershields, 5-Inch AA gun shields and 20mm guns and platforms. Stb. side, amidship, looking Fwd. Mare Island, CA. 26 February 1942. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1028-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania496k View of splinter shields and 20mm guns and platforms amidships, looking Fwd. Mare Island, CA. 26 February 1942.
Note: There also seems to be some sort of exchange regarding what looks like gas ballons in the left corner of the photo.
U.S. Navy Photograph # 1020-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania152k 20mm gun and platform on Main Deck aft. Mare Island, CA. 26 February 1942. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1030-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania248kLooking up at Mainmast, port side. Mare Island, CA. 26 February 1942. U.S. Navy Photograph courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania421k20 MM guns and shields on emergency cabin platform, port side, 26 February 1942 at Mare Island.USN photo serial # 1026-42, courtesy of Ed Zajkowski.
BB-38 Pennsylvania197k Broadside view of the Pennsylvania (BB-38) starboard side. Bow to frame # 42. Mare Island, Ca. 2 March 1942 as what look to be a slow day at the office: sweeping, discussing orders of the day, looking overboard at the floating barrels chained up alongside. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1111-42 courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania198k Broadside view, starboard side at Mare Island, Ca. 2 March 1942. View from Frame # 33 to 58.U.S. Navy Photograph # 1110-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania476k Broadside view, starboard side at Mare Island, Ca. 2 March 1942. View from Frame # 40 to 74.
The Pennsylvania (BB-38) survived Pearl Harbor virtually without damage and continued to operate in essentially her Pre-Pearl Harbor configuration, except that now all her 5-in./25-caliber guns were shielded and she had considerable additional light anti-aircraft weapons: the now standard four quadruple 1.1-in. and sixteen, post-attack 20mm Oerlikons.
Some of the features installed on the Pacific Fleet battleships before their destruction were therefore preserved, as shown in this 2 March 1942 Mare Island view, including the installation of enclosed Mark 19 directors on the rangefinder level and extensive splinter protection.
The shields for the 5-inch /25-caliber guns were a Pacific Fleet initiative.
Note the air defense position at the base of the foremast and radar, scheduled for installation aboard all battleships.
U.S. Navy Photograph # 1108-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania78kBroadside view, starboard side. Plate # 5a, Frame 96 - 115. 2 March 1942 at Mare Island.USN photo serial # 1105-42, courtesy of Ed Zajkowski.
BB-38 Pennsylvania396kStern view of the Pennsylvania (BB-38), taken on 2 March 1942, at San Francisco for refit and repairs after Pearl Harbor. USN photo serial # 1114-42,courtesy of John Hummel. Text i.d. courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
BB-38 Pennsylvania129k20mm & 1.1 guns & platforms on Main Deck, aft, Stb.side, looking Fwd. Mare Island, CA. 3 March 1942. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1027-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania82kPhoto taken on 2 March 1942, at Mare Island for refit and repairs after Pearl Harbor. Visible are much of her different early war guns - two shielded 5in/25cal guns, three 5in/51cal casemate guns, a 1.10" AA gun tub, and numerous 20mm Oerlikons on the upper levels.USN photo # 1109-42.
BB-38 Pennsylvania204kSplinter shield on Pennsylvania's (BB-38) Navigating Bridge, looking aft at Mare Island, CA. March, 1942. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1021-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania22.57k View of splinter shields, 5-Inch A.A.shields, 1.1-inch and 20mm guns and platforms. Stb. side, looking aft.Mare Island, CA. March 1942. U.S. Navy Photograph # 1024-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania22.57k Broadside view, Stb. side. Mare Island, CA. 3 March 1942. View from Frame # 71 to 104.U.S. Navy Photograph # 1106-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania233k Broadside view, Stb. side, Mare Island, CA. 3 March 1942. View from Frame # 75 to 104.U.S. Navy Photograph # 1107-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania222kBroadside view, Stb. side. Mare Island, CA. 3 March 1942. View from Frame # 115 to stern.U.S. Navy Photograph # 1104-42, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania58kDeck view of the Pennsylvania (BB-38) as seen from the stern, looking forward. This photo is taken after her 1942 refit, where twin 5"/38 secondary mounts replaced her 5"/25 and 5"/51 secondary mounts. USN photo courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania224kLooking Fwd. from port director platform. Note the long-base rangefinder and the addition of quad.40mm mounts and their associated MK.51 directors. San Francisco, CA. 28 January 1943.Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 770-43, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania279kPennsylvania (BB-38) Plan view, looking aft from Stb. Director. Note the CXAM-1. Navy Yard, Mare Island, CA. January 1943. Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 773-43, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania222k A good view of her added 40mm quads and directors,the 20mm gallery and the long-base rangefinder already mentioned. Atop her #2 Turret a triplet of 20mm's in their tubs.Plan view, looking Fwd. from Stbd. Director Platform. San Francisco, CA. 28 January 1943.Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 771-43, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania168k View aft. Note the type P catapult on her stern. San Francisco, CA. 28 January 1943.Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 774-43, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania151kPlan view, port side, looking Fwd. The two MK.33 were replaced by MK.37 with MK.4 radars. San Francisco, CA. 28 January 1943.Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 775-43, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania137kA new deck house is base for 8 Twin 5-in. 38-cal. The mainmast is replaced by a stump tower carrying a Main Battery Director to open sky arcs. San Francisco, CA. 28 January 1943.Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 777-43, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania443k The Pennsylvania (BB-38) sometime following her rebuild at Mare Island after 5 February 1943. Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 8043-45-S8, courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-38 Pennsylvania98kDrawing prepared by the Bureau of Ships for use in preparing camouflage designs, circa 1943. This plan shows the Pennsylvania's (BB-38) starboard side, superstructure ends and exposed decks. Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 80-G-156820-A, now in the collections of the National Archives.
BB-38 Pennsylvania87kDrawing prepared by the Bureau of Ships for Camouflage Measure 32, Design 3D, intended for the battleship Pennsylvania (BB-38), circa 1943. This plan shows the ship's starboard side and superstructure ends. Official U.S. Navy Photograph # 80-G-156820, now in the collections of the National Archives.
BB-38 Pennsylvania208k Pennsylvania (BB-38), 135 degrees off centerline (starboard quarter)1 February 1943, Mare Island. USN photo # 862-43, courtesy of Mike Green.
BB-38 Pennsylvania522kPennsylvania (BB-38), taken in February 1943, location unknown. Possibly taken from an airship from either ZP-31 or ZP-32 which were based at Moffet Field.USN photo courtesy of David Buell.
BB-38 Pennsylvania74kOverhead view of the Pennsylvania (BB-38) on 1 February 1943, at the conclusion of her overhaul at San Francisco. Easily seen in this view are the ship's 10-quadruple 40mm mounts and her 8-dual 5"/38 secondary mounts.Photo & text from the Division of Naval Intelligence, Identification and Characteristics Section, as published in June, 1943. Courtesy of Mike Green. Photo added 03/05/09.
BB-38 Pennsylvania458kPortside view of the Pennsylvania (BB-38), February 1943, probably at Mare Island. Official USN photo courtesy of Steve Singlar, ETCS, USN.R-ret.
BB-38 Pennsylvania390kAcrylic on canvas portrait of the Pennsylvania (BB-38) after modernization by the artist William (Bill) H. RaVell III, of the International Society of Marine Artists. He was commissioned to paint a portrait of the battleship Pennsylvania (here) and a portrait of the Trident Submarine Pennsylvania. Photo courtesy of William (Bill) H. RaVell III. More of his work can be found @ravellfineart.com.

USS PENNSYLVANIA BB-38 History
View This Vessels DANFS History Entry
(Located On The Hazegray & Underway Web Site, This Is The Main Archive For The DANFS Online Project.)

Crew Contact And Reunion Information

Contact Name: Mr. Jess Dennis
Address: 3053 Birchfield Dr Memphis, TN, 38127-7403
Phone: 901-357-0263
E-mail: jess@usspennsylvania.com

Note About Contacts.

The contact listed, Was the contact at the time for this ship when located. If another person now is the contact, E-mail me and I will update this entry. These contacts are compiled from various sources over a long period of time and may or may not be correct. Every effort has been made to list the newest contact if more than one contact was found.


Additional Resources
Hazegray & Underway Battleship Pages By Andrew Toppan.
BB-38 Web Page By Ken Munro

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