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NavSource Online: Battleship Photo Archive


Radio Call Sign: November - Echo - Charlie - Romeo

Colorado Class Battleship: Displacement 32,600 Tons, Dimensions, 624' (oa) x 97' 4" x 31' 4" (Max). Armament 8 x 16"/45 14 x 5"/51, 4 x 3"/50AA 2 x 21" tt. Armor, 13 1/2" Belt, 18" Turrets, 3 1/2" + 1 1/2" Decks, 16" Conning Tower. Machinery, 28,900 SHP; Turbines with Electric Drive, 4 screws. Speed, 21 Knots, Crew 1080.

Operational and Building Data: Laid down by New York Shipbuilding, Camden NJ., 29 May 1919. Launched 22 March 1921. Commissioned 30 August 1923. Decommissioned 7 January 1947. Stricken 1 March 1959.
Fate: Sold 6 July 1959 and broken up for scrap.
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Keel Laying / Commissioning
1919 - 1923

With the picture of the battle cruiser (upper picture) is shown that of the new projected battleship of the Colorado (BB-45), Maryland (BB-46), West Virginia (BB-48) and Washington (BB-47). They will be vessels of 32,600 tons, With twenty-one knots speed and carrying eight sixteen inch guns each. There will be twenty-two smaller guns besides four anti-air craft guns and torpedo tubes. Big as these ships will be they will be outclassed by the three still newer battleships already authorized, the ships of the 49, 50, 51 class.
Image and text provided by Ohio Historical Society, Columbus, OH.
Photo from The Democratic Banner. (Mt. Vernon, Ohio) 1898-192?, 26 December 1916, Image 1, via
BB-45 Colorado815kColorado class, artwork by F. Muller, circa 1916, depicting a preliminary design for these ships, before the addition of heavier "cage" masts, enlarged superstructure and the elimination of secondary battery gun positions in the hull.Photo LC-DIG-det-32709u courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado346kColorado (BB-45) under construction in Camden N.J., 1921.Colorado web page.
New York, Shipbuilding
1.70k Overhead view of Colorado (BB-45), showing stern, at New York Shipbuilding Corporation 30 September 1921. Photo courtesy of
245k Launching Party of Battleship Colorado (BB-45).
Sponsor: Mrs. Ruth Nicholson Melville (Mrs. Max Melville), daughter of Senator Samuel D. Nicholson of Colorado. The sponsor broke a bottle of water from the Colorado River. The Society of Sponsors' Prayer for our Navy was offered by Chaplain C. H. Dickins just before the launching.
Among those present on the stand were Assistant Secretary of the Navy Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., and Mrs. Roosevelt, Rear Admiral Reynold T. Hall and Mrs. Hall,Colonel Russell C. Langdon, U. S. A., and Mrs. Langdon, Rear Admiral L. M. Nulton and Mrs. Nulton, Captain Lloyd Bankson, U. S. Navy, Captain T. G. Roberts, U. S. Navy, delegation of members of the Society of Sponsors. A vast concourse of spectators witnessed the launching.
Image & text courtesy of New York Shipbuilding Company via Ships of the United States Navy and Their Sponsors. 1913-1923, BY THE SOCIETY OF SPONSORS OF THE UNITED STATES NAVY.
BB-45 Colorado
NR Uncle Sams Newest
The Colorado (BB-45), newest American dreadnought, is shown as she was launched at Camden, N. J.. She has eight 16-inch guns, displaces 33,600 tons and is driven by four propellers having 28,000 horsepower. Inset is Mrs. Max Melville, daughter of S. D. Nicholson. Colorado senator, who christened the giant.
Image and text provided by Rutgers University Libraries.
Photo & text by Perth Amboy Evening News. [volume] (Perth Amboy, N.J.) 1903-1959, 28 March 1921, LAST EDITION, Image 3, courtesy of
BB-45 ColoradoNRWrite vs. rwong.
THE GARGOYLE FACE of the North Carolina (BB-52), the Superdreadnought recently launched at New York, Shipbuilding, Camden, NJ. The weird figurehead is only noticeable from this angle and is formed by the holes in the hawser and anchor chains. The photo gives one a good idea of the sheer cutwater and speedy lines of the new battleship.
It is actually the Colorado (BB-45).
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo from New-York Tribune.(New York [N.Y.]) 1866-1924, 10 April 1921, Images 58 & 59, via
Photo fix courtesy of Tom Kermen INC.
Photo i.d. courtesy of Chuck Haberlein.
BB-45 Colorado127kColorado (BB-45) under construction in Camden N.J., 1921.Digital ID # ggbain 36349v, LC-B2-6056-5. Source: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, from the George Grantham Bain Collection.
BB-45 Colorado185kColorado (BB-45), stern view at end of Pier 2 and being towed at New York Shipbuilding Corporation, Camden, New Jersey, 23 April 1921.USN photo # 19-LC-19G-27 courtesy of National Museum of the U.S. Navy via
BB-47 Washington 135k The launching of the Washington (BB-47), at the New York Shipbuilding Corporation shipyard, Camden, New Jersey, 1 September 1921. Photographed by the Aero Service Corporation, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Colorado (BB-45) is fitting out in the wet basin at the end of the covered shipways building.
The two 535-foot passenger liners fitting out in the upper left are S.S. Southern Cross, converted later as the Wharton (AP-7), and S.S. Hoosier State.
Washington's construction ceased in February 1922, under the terms of the Naval Limitations Treaty, and she was sunk as a target in 1924.
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph # NH 105177. Donation of Charles R. Haberlein Jr., 2007.
New York, Shipbuilding
1.65k Inscription: "Bird's Eye View of New York Shipbuilding Corporation, Camden, N.J." Copyright 1921, this view shows all the elements of the World War I expansion, as well as Yorkship Village rising from the former Cooper farm at top center. The Yard looked much like this when the Washington (BB-47) was constructed here.
Colorado (BB-45) is fitting out in the wet basin at the end of the covered ship ways building. Two 535-foot passenger liners are also fitting out, in the upper left of the photo
Photo & partial text courtesy of
Photo i.d. courtesy of Charles R. Haberlein Jr.
NR Video showing state of construction of the South Dakota (BB-49), Washington (BB-47) & Colorado (BB-45) at the New York Shipbuilding Corporation, Camden, New Jersey.
Worker walking across snow-covered deck of unfinished battleship South Dakota / ship under construction or construction halted / workers on ship / pan ship side, signs reading "Twin Screws Keep Clear of Propeller," can see Washington faintly above sign / pan down ship funnels, workers on deck levels / side view nearly finished Colorado, workers along railroad tracks / workers on deck of Colorado, big guns in fg / Note: exact day not known.
Video courtesy of Daniel Hacker.
BB-47 Washington NR Naval board weighs fate of big battleships.
Photo snapped during inspection of the Washington (BB-47) and the Colorado (BB-45), both ships now nearing completion at the Camden, N. J., yards. Rear Admiral George W. McElroy in overalls at right.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo & text by Evening Star.([volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 26 February 1922, Image 67, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado185kColorado (BB-45) fitting out in Camden N.J., 1922.USN photo courtesy of Scott Koen &
1923 - 1941
NR Colorados Make History in the U.S. Navy
Top, left—Captain Rowan Belknap, U. S. N., commanding officer of the Battleship Colorado (BB-45). He entered Annapolis Naval Academy in 1887, served in the Spanish War, Philippine Insurrection, and Boxer Campaign: decorated for services in connection with the Messina earthquake relief in 1909; commander of mine-laying and mine-sweeping branch of Atlantic Fleet 1915-1917; promoted to Captain, May, 1917; awarded Navy Distinguished Service Medal for service in connection with fitting out and afterwards commanding the American Mine Laying Squadron in the Northern Barrage Operation in the North Sea; commanded Battleship Delaware (BB-28) 1919-1920; recently on staff of Naval War College.
Top, right—The first "Colorado.” This was a 3,400-ton steam frigate with 40 guns, named for the Colorado River and launched June 19, 1856, at the Navy Yard, Norfolk, Va. The sponsor for the ship was Miss Nannie Sedden Dornin (Mrs. Joseph N. Barney), daughter of Captain Thomas A. Dornin of the U. S. Navy. The U. S. S. Colorado,” first, in 1861, took part in the attack on Pensacola, Florida. In 1862 the vessel engaged four Confederate steamers off the S. W. Pass. In 1863 the “Colorado” engaged in all bombardments and attacks on Fort Fisher.
Center, right—The "Colorado," 2nd. This is a 13,680-ton armored cruiser, named for the state of Colorado, which was launched April 5, 1902, at the yards of the William Cramp & Sons' Ship and Engine Building Company, Philadelphia, Pa. The sponsor for the ship was Miss Cora M. Peabody (Mrs. James Crafton Rogers), daughter of James Hamilton Peabody, Governor of Colorado. The vessel is 502 feet long, her beam length is 69 feet and her draft is 24 feet.
Bottom — Battleship "Colorado (BB-45).” This battleship, the finest in the world and one of the last to be constructed by the United States for many years in accordance with the Arms Conference Treaty, is nearly completed and will go into commission on August 30 at the New York Shipbuilding Yards, Camden, N. J. She is propelled by Westinghouse turbo-electric system. In striking power, rapidity of action, facility of control afloat.
Image and text provided by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library, Chapel Hill, NC.
Photo courtesy of Palisadian.. [volume] (Cliffside Park, N.J.) 31 August 1923, Image 1, via
Battle Fleet1.60kU.S. Navy Battle fleet steaming into Panama Bay to join scouting fleet for combined fleet maneuvers, probably 1923.
The irony of this photo is that the ship with the least certain ID is the one closest to the camera! The probability is that she is the California (BB-44) based on the fact that the 3 Colorado class (BB-45 / 48) operated for such a short time without catapults and the ship in the photo has a bare quarterdeck). The photo is not clear enough to show twin or triple turrets. However, the ships in the background show enough unique characteristics to give more certainty about an ID. The nearest column are, left to right, Mississippi (BB-41) (uneven lookout station heights on the cagemasts), Tennessee (BB-43), (unique searchlight towers on after stack), and Idaho (BB-42) (lower bridge than New Mexico (BB-40)). The two ships in the second column are New York (BB-34) (bridge does not extend out far enough to be Texas (BB-35)) and Nevada (BB-36) (no enclosed lookout stations on the cagemasts and she has a catapult on her quarterdeck). The farthest column has (again left to right) Arizona (BB-39) (lower bridge), Pennsylvania (BB-38) (higher bridge) and New Mexico (again, the higher bridge). It is interesting that the only apparent catapult is the one on the Nevada. This would place the photo in the 1922-24 time frame.
Ernest La Rue Collection, Gift of the U.S. Army. Courtesy of the Library of Congress. USN photo # Lot-11952-VI-37, courtesy of the National Museum of the U.S. Navy, courtesy of
Photo & text i.d. courtesy of Richard M. Jensen.
BB-45 Colorado661kCommissioning the Colorado (BB-45), 30 August 1923. Photo by Bain News Service/Getty Images courtesy of
Capt. Martin E. Trench, commandant of the Philadelphia navy yard and commander of the old battleship Colorado (ACR-7), signing the builder's receipt and accepting the new Colorado (BB-45). According to the Navy's building program, this will be the last superdreadnaught to be constructed in this country for eleven years. The ship carries sixty-six officers, 1,328 sailors and seventy-five marines.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo from Evening Star. (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 01 September 1923, Image 12, via
BB-45 Colorado
5.34kWorld's greatest war vessel, the Colorado (BB-45) is commissioned. Photo was taken on deck of the ship, with officers and crew standing at attention as the Stars & Stripes were raised. Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo fix courtesy of my son in law, Roei Yehud.
Photo from Evening Star. (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 9 September 1923, Image 87, & Image 88 via
NR Last Battleship to be built Under Washington Arms Treaty is Commissioned.
Picture No. 1 shows President M. A. Neeland, of the New York Shipbuilding corporation, officially turning over the Colorado (BB-45) to Capt. R. R. Belknap, U. S. N. No. 2 shows forward turret and two of the eight 16-inch guns. No. 3 shows the ship’s company saluting "Old Glory" as she is commissioned. No. 4 shows the officers lined up for inspection.
IImage and text provided by Mississippi Department of Archives and History.
Photo courtesy of The Bolivar County Democrat. (Rosedale, Miss.) 1887-1969, 27 October 1923, Image 8, via
BB-45 Colorado175kColorado (BB-45) passes by the scene of her building at New York Shipbuilding Corporation, Camden, N.J.National Archives Identifier: 45512691
Local Identifier: 165-WW-334A-106.
Photo courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado
NRThe Colorado (BB-45), commanded by Captain Reginald  Belknap, docked in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, after a most successful trial cruise. She will remain in New York for two months while her fire control system is being installed, the ship is the first all-electric dreadnaught of the American navy. Note the "beads." They are strain insulators, a vital part of the immense electrical system on the huge craft. One man can control the ship's entire 30,000 horsepower through its electric system. The "beads" are on all stays and superstructure support wires.  Image and text provided by State Historical Society of North Dakota.
Photo from The Bismarck Tribune. [volume] (Bismarck, N.D.) 1916-current, 24 October  1923, Image 2 via
The Colorado (BB-45) is the finest battleship in the world, the fastest and most efficent craft of its kind. The photograph, taken in the Brooklyn navy yard, shows the bow of the big vessel and "eyes" for the anchor chain.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo from Evening Star. (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 27 October 1923, Image 16, via
BB-45 ColoradoNROne man runs United States battleship Colorado (BB-45). In this small room all the 30,000 horsepower propelling machinery is controlled. Ordinarily, six men form the control room crew, with the electrical system one man can handle the great vessel.Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo from Evening Star. (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 28 October 1923, Image 86, via
Flathead Indians, who came to New York to take part in a rodeo at Madison Square Garden, get their first look at a battleship, the Colorado (BB-45). The photograph shows one of the sixteen-inch guns of the great fighting ship.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo from Evening Star. (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 13 November 1923, Image 13, via
BB-45 Colorado1.00kColorado (BB-45), less than two months after her commissioning and before her maiden voyage to Europe. November 1923.USNI photo courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
The superdreadnought Colorado (BB-45), largest battleship afloat, was moored temporarily into a unique position alongside the largest liner owned by America and the second largest in the world, the SS Leviathan in New York Harbor. This is the first time an accurate comparison between the largest warship and the largest liner has ever been obtained, and the mighty Colorado seems like a towboat alongside the SS Leviathan.
Image and text provided by Alaska State Library Historical Collections.
Photo & text by The Alaska Daily Empire. [volume] (Juneau, Alaska) 1912-1926, 27 November 1923, Image 6, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado 363k One turn deserves another: foreground view of cage mast and ship's bell on the Colorado (BB-45) with the SS Leviathan in the background. Photo # 08_06_006153 from the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones collection, courtesy of Kate Monea, Archivist, USS Constitution Museum.
BB-45 Colorado 363k Colorado (BB-45) at pier, circa February - July 1924. Photo # 08_06_004874 from the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones collection, courtesy of Kate Monea, Archivist, USS Constitution Museum.
BB-43 Tennessee 744k Civilians mill around Colorado (BB-45) at South Boston. Photo i.d. courtesy of djazcuy.
Photo # 08_06_005201 from the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones collection, courtesy of Kate Monea, Archivist, USS Constitution Museum.
BB-45 Colorado291k Colorado (BB-45) comes about after making a wide turn, possibly near San Diego in October 1924.USN photo courtesy of Robert M. Cieri.
BB-45 Colorado317kCirca 1920's image of an anchored Colorado (BB-45) in company with other ships of the Pacific fleet. From 1924 to 1941 Colorado operated with the Battle Fleet in the Pacific, participating in fleet exercises and various ceremonies, and returning to the east coast from time to time for fleet problems in the Caribbean. Note her top rear turret has a catapult for the launching of observation planes and the foremast of a tripod mast rising over her bow from a near by anchored warship.USN photo courtesy of Robert M. Cieri.
Partial text courtesy of DANFS.
BB-45 Colorado
1.69kA naval scouting plane lays a protective smokescreen during maneuvers in the Caribbean Sea, 21 March 1924. Left to right: New York (BB-34/35) class battleship; Pennsylvania (BB-38/39) class battleship; Tennessee (BB-43/44) class battleship (behind smoke); Omaha (CL-4/13) class cruiser; Tennessee or Colorado (BB-45/48) class battleship (stern only visible). Photo NH-69203 courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado103kChief Petty Officers study books on "Personnel Management", in the battleship's "Chief's Quarters", circa 1923-25. Note ornate cuckoo clock on the bulkhead in the background. Naval History and Heritage Command # NH 90493, from the collections of the Naval Historical Center.
Southern Cruise89kIn the summer of 1925, the California (BB-44) led the Battle Fleet and a division of cruisers from the Scouting Fleet on a very successful good-will cruise to Australia and New Zealand. The following vessels might be the Colorado (BB-45), Maryland (BB-46) and West Virginia (BB-48) followed by Tennessee (BB-43) and three older battleships, the New Mexico (BB-40), Mississippi (BB-41) & Idaho (BB-42). Photograph probably taken from the California.USN photo courtesy of Robert M. Cieri.
Partial text courtesy of DANFS.
BB-42 Idaho
548k Panorama of Sydney Harbour during the United States Navy's goodwill tour.
On 23 July 1925, Sydney hosted eight of the US Navy Battle Fleet's largest ships, including California (BB-44), Colorado (BB-45),Tennessee (BB-43), Maryland (BB-46), West Virginia (BB-48), New Mexico (BB-40), Mississippi (BB-41) and Idaho (BB-42). The fleet departed for New Zealand on 6 August. This photograph was probably taken at Georges Head Battery, in Georges Heights in the Sydney suburb of Mosman.
This photo is part of the Australian National Maritime Museum’s Samuel J. Hood Studio collection. Sam Hood (1872-1953) was a Sydney photographer with a passion for ships. His 60-year career spanned the romantic age of sail and two world wars. The photos in the collection were taken mainly in Sydney and Newcastle during the first half of the 20th century.
The ANMM undertakes research and accepts public comments that enhance the information we hold about images in our collection. This record has been updated accordingly.
Image and text provided by
Port Angeles Washington 1.90k Port Angeles Washington: The lack of turret bearing markings places the photo post 1924 while the already noted presence of the Kidder (DD-319) places it before 1930. The front row of battleships are, left to right, Colorado (BB-45) based on the turret two rangefinder, West Virginia (BB-48) based on the lack of a turret two rangefinder, and probably California (BB-44) based on the bridge configuration. The back row, left to right, are New Mexico (BB-40) based on the higher bridge configuration, Mississippi (BB-41), based on the lower bridge and the fact that the searchlights and lookout station on the main mast are lower than those on the foremast (BB-42 had them at the same height), and Maryland (BB-46) based on the configuration of the turret two rangefinder. Photo courtesy of Curtis Nicolaisen.
Photo & text i.d. courtesy of Richard Jensen.
BB-45 Colorado1.22kThe United States Battle Fleet steaming in column off the California coast during the middle or later 1920s. The three leading ships are (in no particular order) Colorado (BB-45), Maryland (BB-46) and West Virginia (BB-48) followed by Tennessee (BB-43) and three older battleships. Photograph taken from California (BB-44).Official USN photo Naval History and Heritage Command # 80-G-695093, now in the collections of the National Archives.
BB-45 Colorado 1.32k Two chicks and a super sedan visit the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in the late 1920's.
The big fighting ship in the background is in for repairs. A few curious sailors appear to be discussing the girls rather than the car.
The Colorado (BB-45) is in the background. This photo dates earlier than 1927 because of the rangefinder attached to the after cage mast. That was removed when the catapult was added to turret III. The catapult was in place by 1927.
Photo i.d. courtesy of Richard Jensen.
Photo from the book Maritime Memories of Puget Sound by Jim Gibbs and Joe Willamson, 1987, via Tommy Trampp.
487k Naval Air Force TS-1 Airplane of Fighting Squadron One is hoisted aboard B>Colorado (BB-45) after an accident, during maneuvers off Central America, circa 1925-1927. Note broken float supports and other damage. Naval History and Heritage Command photo NH-101874
BB 45
499k Detail view showing Colorado (BB-45) in Miraflores Lock, Panama Canal, circa 1926, with unmarked Loening OL-6 on catapult. Photo courtesy of David Wright.
Guantanamo Bay, Cuba 1927 2.60k Ships of the U.S. Fleet pictured at anchor at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, during winter exercises in 1927.
The "center" row has Mississippi (BB-41) then Langley (CV-1) , Oklahoma (BB-37), Pennsylvania (BB-38) and Arizona (BB-39) in that order. The next row to the left has Idaho (BB-42) then New Mexico (BB-40), followed by 3 of the Tennessee/Colorado class (hard to pick out distinguishing features in this photo), with Nevada (BB-36) as tail-end-Charlie. Further to the left are another Tennessee/Colorado class BB and a Memphis (formerly Tennessee) class armored cruiser. Two unidentified Omaha class cruisers are in the foreground. There are at least 17 destroyers, identifiable (bottom, right) is Mahan (DD-102), converted to a minelayer and redesignated DM-7, but still wearing her old DD hull number (102) and two submarine tenders in the foreground with about 10 smaller and two large submarines. The peninsula in the right foreground is South Toro Cay, where the drydock is still visible that was begun in 1904, but cancelled two years later.
Photo i.d. courtesy of Richard Jensen &
Photo courtesy of via Branden Deschaine & Fabio Pena.
BB-45 Colorado1.56kVertical aerial photograph, taken in harbor on 2 May 1927 with three large and five smaller harbor tugs alongside and one astern.Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 55272 from the collections of the Naval Historical Center.
Picture shows the giant superdreadnaught Colorado (BB-45), one of the 122 battleships comprising the Atlantic and Pacific fighting fleets to arrive in New York after naval maneuvers in the Canal Zone, aground off the Battery, near Governors Island. A flotilla of tugs is shown making an effort to float the vessel.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC. via Evening Star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 2 May 1927, Image 17, courtesy of
Thirteen tugs, their noses to the side of the Colorado (BB-45) greatest battleship in the world, push it off Diamond Reef, New York harbor, where it ran aground.
Image and text provided by Connecticut State Library, Hartford, CT. via New Britain Herald. [volume] (New Britain, Conn.) 1890-1976, 03 May 1927, Second Section, Image 20, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado294k Colorado (BB-45) and tugs beside the Leviathan.Photograph courtesy of Tommy Trampp.
BB-38 Pennsylvania
NRA striking naval scene from the deck of the Pennsylvania (BB-38). The dreadnaught, making her way north with the battle fleet, is preparing to release one of her planes from the catapult.
At right: The Colorado (BB-45) comes to grief. Eight tugs are pushing the giant sea fighter into the Brooklyn Navy Yard for inspection after her recent grounding in New York Harbor.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo from Evening Star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 15 May 1927, Image 112, via
Uncle Sam's giant sea fighter, the super dreadnaught Colorado (BB-45), goes into dry-dock at the Brooklyn Navy Yard for inspection of damage caused by her recent grounding on Diamond Reef, in New York Harbor. It took 20 tugs nearly two days to pull the battleship off the reef.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo & text by Evening Star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 10 May 1927, Image 17, courtesy of
567k One of the ship's power launches, circa 1927. Naval History and Heritage Command photo NH 55278 courtesy of
New York, Shipbuilding
414k Colorado (BB-45) champion whaleboat crew 1927-1928. Photo courtesy of David Wright.
BB-45 Colorado103kColorado (BB-45) at Puget Sound Navy Yard on 5 April 1928. Newly installed 5"/25 open mounts and Mark 19 directors, with their altimeters are easily seen. She had also just been fitted with a protected flag battle station and with a powder catapult on her quarterdeck. The bridge has been enlarged. During a previous refit she had been fitted with a 12-foot armored range finder for flag use, on a platform just above the roof of No. 2 turret.
At the same time, air coolers and purifiers had been installed for her plotting room, central station, internal communication room, and torpedo tracking room. Main cage mast behind #2 turret belongs to an unidentified older battleship.
USN photo. Text courtesy of U.S. Battleships: An Illustrated Design History by Norman Friedman.
Photo i.d. & text courtesy of Ronald J. Nash.
BB-47 Washington 284k Colorado (BB-45) leading, Maryland (BB-46) following. The 3 sisters can be distinguished from one another (during the 20's and early 30's) by the forward range dial. Colorado carries hers half below the bottom of the fire control tower, the Maryland carries hers fully on the face of the fire control tower while the West Virginia (BB-48) carries hers like the Colorado but her dials are black with white numbers. Text & photo i.d. courtesy of Chris Hoehn.
Photo possibly by Frank Lynch, chief photographer of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, circa 1929.
Photo from the collection of Carrie Schmidt.
BB-45 Colorado307kCirca 1927-29 view of a Navy Vought UO-1 being catapulted off the Colorado (BB-45). US Navy and Marine Corps Museum/Naval Aviation Museum, Photo No. 2011.003.187.028 courtesy of Mike Green.
Battlefleet122kWatercolor of a Presidential review during President Hoover's term of office, 1928-32.
Crews line the rails of a Colorado class (BB-45 / 48) battleship as the ships pass in line astern of the reviewing stand with the airship Los Angeles (ZR-3) piercing the clouds accompanied by 9 biplanes.
Courtesy of Michael Schwarz.
Battlefleet56kView of the U.S. Battlefleet from above, possibly from the airship Los Angeles (ZR-3). Photo courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado136kBow on view of the Colorado (BB-45) with another battleship in the background, during the later 1920s or early 1930s. USN photo # 80-G-1021421 courtesy of via Bill Gonyo.
Navy’s favorite cigarette
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo courtesy of Evening Star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 29 September 1930, Image 30, via
BB-45 Colorado NR WRECKING OF WARSHIP'S "NERVE CENTER" LAID TO SABOTAGE. Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo & text by Evening Star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 16 October 1930, Image 2, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado79kVice Admiral Alfred Wilkinson Johnson commanded the battleship Colorado (BB-45) from 1 January 1931 to 12 December 1931 and was Assistant Chief of the Bureau of Navigation from 9 January 1932 to 5 May 1933. He was advanced to the rank of Rear Admiral in 1933. Prior to this he had commanded several destroyers and the cruiser Richmond (CL-9). USN photo courtesy of Bill Gonyo.
BB-45 Colorado616kThe battleship Colorado (BB-45) steams through rough seas circa 1932. Note the hull number painted atop one of the forward turrets and the Vought O3Us positioned on the catapults. National Naval Aviation Museum photo courtesy of Bill Gonyo.
BB-44671k(Original Caption) 2/5/1932 Los Angeles, CA. Here is an aerial view of 4 of Uncle Sam's Battleships as they left LA Harbor with the rest of the US Battle fleet, for the manuevers of the Hawaiian islands. (Left to Right) The ships are: Flagship California (BB-44), Maryland (BB-46), Colorado (BB-45), and West Virginia (BB-48). Photo by Bettmann, via Getty Images, courtesy of
BB-34 New York413k New York (BB-34) ahead of Pennsylvania (BB-38). The next ship ahead is a Tennessee class (BB-43 /44) based on the slope of the turret roofs. (Uniform slope back to front - no kink like the twin 16" mounts on the Colorado's (BB-45). Based on the relatively full appearance of the forward superstructure, I am leaning toward California (BB-44) which had an enlarged flag bridge as Battle Force Flagship. The other three are obviously Tennessee (BB-43) and/or Colorado class (BB-45 / 48) but are too indistinct to ID specifically. Because of the boom cranes on the sterns, the photo was taken between 1931 and 1934. Photo courtesy of Kerry Garrett.
Photo & text i.d. courtesy of Richard M. Jensen.
BB-40 New Mexico 88k Four photos for the 1933 400 KW Turbine Gear Generator Sets for the battleships:
New Mexico (BB-40), Mississippi (BB-41), Idaho (BB-42), Tennessee (BB-43) & Colorado (BB-45).
Figure 1
Figure 2
Figure 5
Figure 4
Photos courtesy of Ed Zajkowski.
BB-45 Colorado807kSharp, detailed photo of the Colorado (BB-45), possibly with three Loening OL-6 scout planes on her turret catapults, circa 1930s. National Archives photo # 19-N-14729, courtesy of David Buell.
BB-45 Colorado190kAccompanied by a seagull, the Colorado (BB-45) passes Alcatraz Island, circa 1930's.USN photo courtesy of Robert M. Cieri.
BB-45 Colorado72kQueer Accidents at Naval Target Practice
This diagram shows the odd course taken by the faulty shell fired by the Colorado (BB-45) during target practice, and, at the top of the page, is a graphic closc-up of that dreadnought's four forward 16-inch guns in their turrets.
Image provided by: Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo & text by Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 15 April 1934, Image 85, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado565kShown here entering New York in 1934.National Naval Aviation Museum photo courtesy of Bill Gonyo.
BB-45 Colorado299kFleet exercises on 31 May 1934. USN photo courtesy of David Buell.
Colon, Canal Zone2.44kShips of the United States Fleet pictured at anchor inside the breakwater at Colon, Canal Zone, 1935.
The carriers are, front to back, Langley (CV-1), Saratoga (CV-3) and Lexington (CV-2). The two battleships beyond Lexington are the New York (BB-34) with Texas (BB-35) behind. The nearest battleship, straight up from the Langley is Pennsylvania (BB-38). The BB immediately beyond and to the left of Pennsylvania (BB-38) is California (BB-44). The remaining battleships include two New Mexico's: Mississippi (BB-41) and Idaho (BB-42), but even this higher rez shot is not clear enough to tell which is which. Also are the rest of the "Big Five" and what is probably one of the Nevada's, but that is not certain. The photo is not clear enough for positive identifications. The cruisers to the left are three Northampton's (CA-26 / 31) and the two Pensacola's (CA-24 & 25) (the pair furthest from the camera) and six Omaha's.
Photo & text i.d. courtesy of Richard M. Jensen.
Photo courtesy of National Naval Aviation Museum (NNAM) photo (# 1996.488.001.006) courtesy of Fabio Pena.
BB-45 Colorado220k Colorado (BB-45) in Caribbean climate?USN photo courtesy of David Buell.
BB-45 Colorado610kAll main batteries trained to starboard; the Colorado (BB-45) is about to provide an answer during a Fleet Problem, circa mid 1930's. USN / National Archives # N-3158, courtesy of David Buell.
Almost Unknown274kUS Navy battleships in parade formation in San Diego, California, 23 August 1935.
Pennsylvania (BB-38) in the lead followed by West Virginia (BB-48), Colorado (BB-45), Maryland (BB-46), California (BB-44) and Texas (BB-35).
The ship behind the Texas appears to be the New York (BB-34). You can see a shadow on the forward fighting top consistent with the forward-facing bathtub that New York had, plus you can barely make out the double turrets.
Photo i.d. courtesy of Richard Jensen with an assit from Richard McSlick.
USN photo # 80-G-462946 from the National Museum of the U.S. Navy via
BB-48 West Virginia272kThe West Virginia (BB-48) as flagship for the Commander, Battleship Divisions, Battle Fleet, followed by other battleships steaming in line ahead during the middle through later 1920's.
The aircraft on the turret catapult appears to be a Curtiss SOC (I can't make out the stern aircraft.), so the date has to be mid-to-later 1930s.
The four leading ships behind her are (in no particular order) Colorado (BB-45), Maryland (BB-46), California (BB-44) & Tennessee (BB-43).
Text i.d. courtesy of Alan Moore.
Photo courtesy of Pieter Bakels.
BB-45 Colorado171k A Pacific Aerial Survey photo of the Colorado (BB-45), probably at Seattle during Fleet Week, July - August 1935.USN photo courtesy of Robert M. Cieri.
Battleship Row1.80k 1936 photo of Battleship Row, Pearl Harbor. Among the ships in the harbor are: Front and center a Northampton class CA, most likely the Chester (CA-27).
The two New Orleans (CA-32) class cruisers on the far left are the Minneapolis (CA-36) nearer the camera with New Orleans (CA-32) behind. Both have the curved-faced turrets, limiting them to the CA-32/34/36 group. Within that group, only New Orleans lacked the glassed-in navigation bridge (below the pilothouse), and minor superstructure variations point to the other being Minneapolis rather than Astoria (CA-34).
The battleships from left to right: Colorado (BB-45), or West Virginia (BB-48), outboard of Idaho (BB-42), Nevada (BB-36), outboard of Mississippi (BB-41), New Mexico (BB-40), outboard of Maryland (BB-46) or California (BB-44).
On the far right is the Hospital ship Relief (AH-1) with two unidentified ships ahead and to her port side.
Text courtesy of David Johnston, (USNR), Aryeh Wetherhorn (USNR) & Richard Jensen.
Photo courtesy of Edward Cwalinski, submitted by Barry Litchfield.
BB-45 Colorado19kRear Admiral Wilhelm Lee Friedell. It was during Admiral Wilhelm Lee Friedell's tour as commanding officer of the Colorado (BB-45) that he supervised the search effort for the Amelia Earhart-Fred Noonan plane, lost in the Pacific in 1937. USN photo cropped from photo # 80-G-333978, courtesy of Bill Gonyo.
NR Scene of New Search for Missing Flyers
The far-flung hunt for Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan has been shifted to small islands and coral reefs south and east of Howland Island, the tiny spot of land she missed on her flight from Lae, New Guinea. The battleship Colorado (BB-45), steaming from Honolulu to waters north of the island, changed her course to head for the Windslow Bank, 100 miles east. She planned to release three catapult planes over the area.
Copyright, A. P. Wirephoto.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo courtesy of Evening Star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, 07 July 1937, Image 4, via
Big Battleship Steams at Top Speed to Help
Colorado (BB-45) Ready to Send Planes To Join in Hunt; Efforts Shifted To Phoenix Islands Sector
Is Amelia Clinging to This Lifeboat?
Among the equipment carried by Amelia Earhart on her globe-girdling flight was this tiny rubber, air inflated lifeboat. Now with her plane forced down in the vicinity of Howland island, in mid-Pacific, the lifeboat may figure in the safety of America’s famed flyer and her pilot, Frederick J. Noonan...
Waiting, waiting, waiting, George Palmer Putnam, publisher and husband of Amelia Earhart, and Mrs. Frederick Noonan, a bride of three months and wife of Amelia’s navigator, keep unending vigil at Oakland airport awaiting definite word that Amelia's plane and its occupants are found.
Image and text provided by University of California, Riverside; Riverside, CA.
Photo courtesy of Imperial Valley Press. (El Centro, Calif.) 1907-current, 07 July 1937, Image 1, via
NR Combing Pacific for Amelia Earhart
A plane is shown being catapulted from the deck of the battleship Colorado (BB-45), ordered to scour the far-Pacific for Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan. The ship is equipped with three planes
Image and text provided by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library, Chapel Hill, NC.
Photo courtesy of Henderson Daily Dispatch. (Henderson, N.C.) 1914-1995, 10 July 1937, Image 8, via
BB-45 Colorado40kThe Colorado (BB-45) & two destroyers searched in vain during an NROTC cruise from 11 June to 22 July 1937 for the missing Amelia Earhart.USN photo courtesy of Pieter Bakels via Partial text courtesy of DANFS.
BB-45 Colorado200kCapt. Richard Stanislaus Edwards was the commanding officer of the battleship Colorado (BB-45) from 1938 to 1939. USN photo courtesy of Bill Gonyo.
BB-38 Pennsylvania & Colorado class119kPennsylvania (BB-38) & or Colorado (BB-45), Maryland (BB-46) & or West Virginia (BB-48) at 1010 dock sometime after returning to Pearl Harbor, circa 1939-40. USN photo by Albert Weigandt & submitted by James D. Card, QMCS (SW/AW). Partial text courtesy of DANFS. Photo i.d. courtesy of Tom Bateman.
BB-40 New Mexico & family463kProbable front and rear photos here and below showing formations of aircraft flying over U.S. Navy battleships during exercises at sea, 1938 / 1939.
Pictured here is the New Mexico (BB-40) in the van with other battleships of the Pacific Fleet and a carrier air group, led by the Air Group Commander in a Curtiss SBC Helldiver.
The aircraft following are:
A torpedo squadron of eighteen Douglas TBD-1s;
A bombing squadron of eighteen Northrop BT-1s;
A scouting squadron eighteen Curtiss SBCs;
A fighting squadron of eighteen Grumman F2F-1s or F3F-3s from either the Yorktown (CV-5) or F3F-2s from the Enterprise (CV-6), plus possibly nine additional aircraft.
The Yorktown and Enterprise were the only two carriers whose bombing squadrons were equipped with the Northrop BT-1.
The text for the photo reads:
"The Navy uses enormous amounts of rubber. At least seventy-five tons of rubber, enough to makes 17,000 tires, are used in the construction of each of these battleships. Tons more are needed for the naval planes that are making history over the world. Medical and communication requirements--and countless other needs of the Navy--are met."
The lead BB looks like Mississippi (BB-41) followed by Maryland (BB-46) (rangefinder on Turret II). My first impression of the Tennessee class (BB-43 /44) is the Tennessee (BB-43), but that is not a certain ID from this photo alone. Fourth is the Oklahoma (BB-37) (no birdbath). Aside from the DD now in the lead, I see nothing in the head-on shot aerial that positively differs from the ID's of the first 4 BB's in the first photo. Of course, in the aft aerial shot, BB #5 is the California (BB-44), ID'd by the enlarged flag bridge, lending support to BB #3 in the first photo being Tennessee. Everything I see supports these three photos all being part of the same operation with at least the first 5 BB's remaining in the same order.
Photograph # LC-USE64 - DC-000944 & partial text courtesy of
Battleship i.d. & text courtesy of Richard Jensen.
Aircraft i.d. & text & timeline courtesy of Alan Moore via the following sources: Airplane i.d.: Yorktown Class Carriers (Warship Pictorial No. 9) by Steve Wiper, Tucson, AZ: Classic Warships Publishing, 2000. & That Gallant Ship: U.S.S. Yorktown (CV-5) by Robert Cressman, Missoula, MT: Pictorial Histories Pub Co, 1985. Timeline from Battleship Arizona: An Illustrated History by Paul Stillwell, Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1991.
BB-40 New Mexico & family1.62kProbable front and rear photos here and above showing formations of aircraft flying over U.S. Navy battleships during exercises at sea, 1938 / 1939.
New Mexico (BB-40) is leading the BB column while the remaining battleships have dual masthead fire control structures.
The air group formation in the two photos appears to be similar. The composition of 18 TBDs, 18 BT-1s, 18 SBCs, and 27 fighters is easier to distinguish in the front/surface view. I'm assuming, based on total aircraft count alone, that the formation in the rear/aerial view is the same. (The perspective makes it difficult to sort the monoplanes and biplanes into their respective types.) The only difference is that in the front/surface view the formation is lead by a Curtiss SBC Helldiver (likely the Air Group Commander) but in the rear/aerial view that lead Helldiver is not present. I suppose it's possible that the photographer was in that Helldiver's rear seat. What stands out for me is the presence of nine extra fighters beyond the normal squadron composition of 18, as seen in the other three squadrons in this formation.
Photo i.d courtesy of Chuck Haberlein, Richard Jensen, Aryeh Wetherhorn, & Tracy White @ Researcher @ Large.
Battleship i.d. & text courtesy of Richard Jensen.
Aircraft i.d. & text courtesy of Alan Moore.
US Navy and Marine Corps Museum/Naval Aviation Museum, photo No. 2008.104.001.234.
BB-39 Arizona1.31kBetween 9 & 13 September 1940 the Arizona (BB-39) was under way with other ships of the US Fleet for simulated fleet engagement. She is pictured here in company with other ships of the Pacific Fleet taken during Fleet Ops. and at least one carrier air group.US Navy and Marine Corps Museum/Naval Aviation Museum, Photo No. 2008.104.001.235 courtesy of Alan Moore.
Text & photo i.d. courtesy of Alan Moore via Battleship Arizona: An Illustrated History by Paul Stillwell, Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1991.
Montana Class
NRDouble Size Battleships Proposed In Navy Program
Here is how one of the proposed 65,000-ton battleships would encompass one of the navy's largest modern warships now in service, the half-as-heavy Colorado (BB-45). Five super-battleships, to displace 65,000 tons when fully armed and loaded, are reported included in current naval appropriations.
Image and text provided by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library, Chapel Hill, NC.
Photo & text by The Wilmington Morning Star. [volume] (Wilmington, N.C.) 1909-1990, 24 March 1941, FINAL EDITION, Image 1, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado
445kCut out of the Colorado class (BB-45) as of December 1941. Drawn by Edward H Wiswesser; 1/10 scale.
Photo courtesy of Tommy Trampp.
BB-45 Colorado85kLots of anti-aircraft 20mm guns in action on the Colorado (BB-45), circa March 1942. USN photo courtesy of Pieter Bakels via
BB-45 Colorado56kA break in the action finds Colorado's (BB-45) crew catching some needed rest, circa March 1942. USN photo courtesy of Pieter Bakels via
BB-45 Colorado274kColorado (BB-45) using anti-torpedo net. Photographed May 1942. USN photo # 80-G-6576 from the National Museum of the U.S. Navy via
BB-45 Colorado 524k Maryland class American battleship is sunk by Italian submarine Barbarigo in the Atlantic Ocean, 31 May 1942.
Cover illustration from La Domenica del Corriere, Sunday supplement to Italian daily newspaper Il Corriere della Sera. Illustrator Achille Beltrame.
Photo via DEA / A. DAGLI ORTI/De Agostini/Getty Images, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado107kColorado (BB-45) as configured on 8 November 1942. This is a port broadside view showing the ship as initially rebuilt after the beginning of WW II. Alterations included the cutting down of the cage mainmast, the addition of 20mm A.A. galleries along the stacks and atop the stub mainmast, the removal of the #3 turret mounted catapult and the addition of "Pacific Fleet" type gun shields on the 5-inch deck mounted secondary guns. Photo from the Division of Naval Intelligence, Identification and Characteristics Section, as published in June, 1943. Courtesy of Mike Green.
BB-45 Colorado77kSignalmen sending a message with semaphore flags, on the Colorado's (BB-45) signal bridge, 29 October 1943. Signalman 2nd Class Kenneth Mitchell is working the flags, as Signalman 3rd Class John Wilson mans the telescope.Official USN photo Naval History and Heritage Command # 80-G-56292, now in the collections of the National Archives.
BB-45 Colorado84kFiring her after 16"/45 guns, during preparations for the Tarawa invasion, which took place in late November 1943. Crewmen visible in this photo are not in combat dress, indicating that the view was taken during battle practice.Naval History and Heritage Command # K-13670, now in the collections of the National Archives.
Pearl Harbor656kAerial of Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii. Shown: Ship dispersal and docking areas. Photograph released 12 December 1943.
The BB at the navy yard pier is the New Mexico (BB-40) because of the mainmast configuration. Both of her sisters had their primary air search radar sets on the mainmast at the time. The three BB's nested by Ford Island are the Tennessee (BB-43) (outboard), Colorado (BB-45) in the middle, and Pennsylvania (BB-38) inboard on the Ford Island side.
Note the 2 Essex class carriers off Ford Island, are probably Essex (CV-9) and Yorktown (CV-10), per "Location of U.S. Naval Aircraft," .
In the insert photo note the Lexington (CV-16) in for drydock repairs suffered when attacked during a raid Kwajalein 4 December; she was hit by a torpedo to starboard, knocking out her steering gear.
She was stateside on 26 December.
Partial text courtesy of DANFS.
USN photo s # 80-G-221100 & 80-G-221098, now in the collections of the National Archives courtesy of the National Museum of the U.S. Navy, courtesy of
Photo & text i.d. courtesy of Richard M. Jensen & Fabio Pena.
BB-38 Pennsylvania425k The Pennsylvania (BB-38) & Colorado (BB-45) are tied up in port at Pearl Harbor sometime around or after 7 December 1943. Official USN photo # 1-084-13, courtesy of David Buell.
BB-45 Colorado89k Underway in camoflouge. April, 1944 photo of the Colorado (BB-45) as rebuilt. She had her stump main cage mast removed and replaced by the superstructure assembly shown here. She still carries, and would always do so, her 5"/25 caliber single secondary armament.USN photo.
BB-45 Colorado200kBow view, port side of the Colorado (BB-45) in Puget Sound on 25 April 1944. Bureau of Ships Photo # 1426-44 courtesy of David Buell.
BB-45 Colorado46kColorado (BB-45) in dry dock, frame 39 looking forward to shell damage. Seattle NARA photo # 3202-44. Record Group 181, 13th Naval District, Records of the Naval District & Shore Establishments.
Photo courtesy of Tracy White @ Researcher @ Large.
BB-45 Colorado46kColorado (BB-45) in dry dock, frame 34 looking forward and up to shell damage. Seattle NARA photo # 3207-44. Record Group 181, 13th Naval District,Records of the Naval District & Shore Establishments.
Photo courtesy of Tracy White @ Researcher @ Large.
BB-45 Colorado102kColorado (BB-45) in Puget Sound on 21 August 1944. Damage in action of 24 July, 1944 at Saipan. Hit #9 at frame 37 (starboard) 15" below upper deck. Shrapnel damage, left gun Turret # 1 (Turret trained 90 degrees at time of hit). Seattle NARA photo # 2798-44. Record Group 181, 13th Naval District,Records of the Naval District & Shore Establishments.
Photo courtesy of Tracy White @ Researcher @ Large.
BB-45 Colorado46kColorado (BB-45) in Puget Sound on 7 September 1944. Damage in action of 24 July, 1944 at Saipan. Hit #1 at frame 61 (starboard) 3 below top of blister Hole in blister plating. Seattle NARA photo # 2777-44. Record Group 181, 13th Naval District, Records of the Naval District & Shore Establishments.
Photo courtesy of Tracy White @ Researcher @ Large.
BB-45 Colorado75kPictured here is the 6 inch shore gun that fired at the Colorado (BB-45) and the Norman Scott (DD-640) on Tinian, 24 July, 1944. Courtesy of Wayne VanDerVoort.
BB-45 Colorado34kMarine honor guard standing at attention during a memorial service.USN photo courtesy of Pieter Bakels via
BB-45 Colorado406kBroadside view, starboard side of the Colorado (BB-45), during her refit trials in Puget Sound, Washington on 2 October 1944. Photo # 3241-44 courtesy of David Buell.
BB-45 Colorado556kStern view, port side of the Colorado (BB-45) in Puget Sound on 2 October 1944. She was refitted with a stump tower mainmast, which replaced her cutdown cage mainmast, a Mark 34main battery director to supplement the old director on the foremast, and Mark 33 5" gun directors. Photo # 3244-44 courtesy of David Buell.
BB-45 Colorado477k Bow view, port side of the Colorado (BB-45) 2 October 1944.Photo # 3246-44 courtesy of David Buell.
BB-45 Colorado116k On post refit trials in Puget Sound, Washington on 3 October 1944. Running at 19.2 knots and creating quite a wake. White colored 5"/25 mounts can be easily picked out; circles indicate quadruple 40mm mounts(ten total). This is her final appearance.USN photo.
BB-45 Colorado426kColorado (BB-45) and the St. Louis (CL-49), while stateside, 10 October 1944 on their way to the Pacific as seen from the blimp ZP-31.USN photo # 80-G-283557, now in the collection of the US National Archives in College Park, Maryland, courtesy of Sean Hert.
BB-38 Pennsylvania392kA painting by the artist Wayne Scarpaci entitled "We have returned."
The Pennsylvania (BB-38) is moving into bombardment position in Lingayen Gulf during the recapture of the Philippines, October 1944. In the background are the Colorado (BB-45), the Portland (CA-33) and the Louisville (CA-28). Army P-40's are in the foreground & army B-25's in the background.
Drawing courtesy of
BB-38 Pennsylvania540kIn one of the most famous photographs of the war, Pennsylvania (BB-38) in the van at Lingayen Gulf during the recapture of the Philippines, October 1944. Ships are from front to back: Pennsylvania, Colorado (BB-45), heavy cruisers Louisville (CA-28) and Portland (CA-33) followed by the light cruiser Columbia (CL-56). A wartime censor has removed the radar on Pennsylvania .NARA Photo # HD-SN-99-02614 from the Department of Defense Still Media Collection, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado602k24 photo PDF of Colorado (BB-45) in action off the Philippines, October 1944. USN photo s courtesy of Scott Koen &
BB-46 Maryland361kMaryland (BB-46), Colorado (BB-45) & Washington (BB-56), circa post November 1943. USN photo courtesy of David Buell.
BB-45 Colorado1.91kFour photo PDF of Lt.Donovan Carl Larson, USN Ret., during his WW II service aboard the Colorado (BB-45) as gun captain of a 40mm quadruple mount.Photos courtesy of his son, Jeff Larson.
BB-45 Colorado206kThis photo was originally i.d. as the Maryland (BB-46), but it is fact the Colorado (BB-45).
The Mark 8 fire control and the design of the tower structure is one clue. Comparing it to photos of Colorado and Maryland after their last refits at Puget Sound, the structures were different.
The 20mm battery on the No. 3 turret is another part of it. But the cincher are the SHIELDED open single 5" gunmounts as opposed to the dual 5" turrets.
The Colorado has the distinction of being the only battleship of the Pacific fleet not to be in Pearl Harbor on December 7. She was in Bremerton for a refit which got cut short when she suddenly became the only fighting BB on the West coast. As a result her updates tended to come later than her sisters, both of whom were sufficiently damaged to require yard time and thus the time was used to give them the update that the Colorado was supposed to have gotten in December 1941 / January 1942. All the while the Colorado was guarding the coast and escorting convoys. The result is that she retained her prewar battery of single 5" AA guns sometime after October 1944.
Also note the Kingfishers alongside the middle level of the rear turrets instead of them being on the stern catapults.
USN photo WAPA 2699 010 courtesy of Joe MacDonald.
Text i.d. courtesy of Chris Hoehn & Joe MacDonald.
BB-45 Colorado470kTransfer of some sort between the Colorado (BB-45) and an unidentified ship alongside sometime after October 1944.
Looks like they are preparing to refuel/resupply for the the ship from which the photo was taken. Note the crowd on the starboard side and the messanger line between the two ships. The Aircraft have probably been shifted off the catapult to provide more deck space and to clear the radius of action for the stern crane. Although it might be the other way round as BB's often served as tankers/luxury stores (i.e. Ice cream) for their escorting DDs.
USN photo WAPA 2699 011 courtesy of Joe MacDonald.
Text i.d. courtesy of Chris Hoehn & Joe MacDonald.
BB-45 Colorado264kColorado (BB-45) anchored at Ulithi, in the Carolines, as seen from the Makin Island (CVE-93), 15 March 1945.USN photo # 80-G-323056, now in the collection of the US National Archives in College Park, Maryland, courtesy of Sean Hert.
BB-45 Colorado73kOil on canvas painting by the artist Anthony Saunders entitled "Colorado at Okinawa."
The Colorado (BB-45) holds the all time record of 37 consecutive days of firing at an enemy and the record of 24 direct enemy air attacks in 62 days both while at Okinawa.
Text and drawing courtesy of
Post War / Scrapping
BB-45 Colorado510kThe Colorado (BB-45) arrives at San Francisco, California, on 15 October 1945, following the end of World War II. Note that the ship's crew is manning the rails (all dressed in "blues") on a foggy day, and with what appears to be a long "homeward bound" pennant streaming from her stern aircraft crane.
I'd have to guess that the "Allied Photographers" 1946 copyright date represents the year the copyright action was taken, not the year of the photo (as I have a hard time believing that the crew was sent out to man the rails again after the "grand ceremonial homecoming". It was certainly not taken when the ship was placed out of commission, as by that time she hadn't been to sea in about a year, and probably had only a very small "caretaker" crew.
As for the absence of flags (presumably at bow and stern), that means nothing other than the fact that, when photographed, the ship was not moored or at anchor. When a USN ship is underway, the National Ensign is flown from the mast (as seen in the photo). When she is moored or at anchor, the jack is flown forward and the National Ensign is flown at the stern.
USN photo # 100229 by Allied Photographers & submitted by Pieter Bakels.
Text courtesy of Chuck Haberlein.
BB-45 Colorado3.02kNavy Day, 27 October 1945. Colorado (BB-45), on last lap of journey home.
Donated by Mr. Thomas J. Watson from a recording America's tribute to its victorious fleet in first peacetime Navy Day since the start of World War Two.
USN photo # Lot 10625-6 courtesy of National Museum of the U.S. Navy via
BB-46 Maryland774kColorado (BB-45) and Maryland (BB-46) shown docked at San Diego, California on 14 November 1945. Both ships, taking part in "Magic Carpet" duties, have just finished bringing a load of veterans from Pearl Harbor Navy Yard to San Diego. Source: United States National Archives, Photo No. 80-G-354581 courtesy of Mike Green.
BB-45 Colorado72kColorado (BB-45) at Puget Sound NSY, 1946. Photo courtesy of Joseph MacDonald & Pieter Bakels. Photo I.d. by Mike Green.
Puget Sound NSY102kThe Alabama (BB-60) is seen tied up to pier 90 at Puget Sound Navy Yard in September, 1946. Directly behind her is the Bunker Hill (CV-17). The foremast and bridge of either the Colorado (BB-45) or Maryland (BB-46) is moored several piers away.Courtesy of Mike Green from Leeward Publications/ SHIP'S DATA (2 & 3) Naval Supply News, Volume 5, No. 18, 6 September 1946 by the U.S. Naval Station at Seattle, Washington.
BB-45 Colorado381kNewspaper articles on the fate of the Colorado (BB-45) from 1946 - 59.Photo courtesy of Ron Reeves (of blessed memory) HTC (ret.)
Puget Sound NSY1.10kPuget Sound NSY around 1948. There are five mothballed Essex class (CV-9) carriers at the left. To the right of the carriers are five battleships. I believe they are Alabama (BB-60), West Virginia (BB-48), Maryland (BB-46), Indiana (BB-58), Colorado (BB-45).USN photo courtesy of Joe MacDonald.
>Puget Sound NSY570kFour mothballed battleships at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in 1948.
Left to right: Alabama (BB-60), West Virginia (BB-48), Indiana (BB-58) & Colorado (BB-45).
Photo courtesy of Joe MacDonald.
Now in Bremerton group of the Pacific reserve fleet, the mothballed Colorado (BB-45) awaits sale and cutting up for scrap. To be scrapped with her are sister ships Maryland (BB-46) and West Virginia (BB-48), also at BremGroup, and the California (BB-44) & Tennessee (BB-43), both mothballed at Philadelphia.
Bremerton Sun photo submitted by Joe MacDonald.
BB-45 Colorado1.85kFINAL VOYAGE
Attended by a bevy of tugs, battleship Colorado (BB-45) made her last trip through Rich passage yesterday afternoon. She was towed to Todd Shipyard in Seattle to be cut up for scrap.
Bremerton Sun photo, 24 July 1959, submitted by Joe MacDonald.
BB-45 Colorado224kColorado (BB-45) about to start the scrapping process in Todd Shipyard in Seattle in 1959. It would take almost two years to finish.Photo courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado258kStart of the scrapping of the conning tower in Todd Shipyard in Seattle in 1959.Photo courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado332kThe last remnant of the scrapping of the superstructure.Photo courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado243k16" inch guns being cut up for scrap. In this view, both after turrets are trained as far forward to starboard as their stops allow.Text courtesy of Joe Barr.
Photo courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado288kThe old wooden #3 drydock at Todd Shipyard in Seattle in 1960 following the ship's scrapping. The crane is just about to lift the ship's final piece off the keel blocks in Todd Seattle's #3 floating drydock.
In the near background on the right is Queen Anne Hill with more distant Magnolia on the left. During the scrapping process the shipyard was faced with the problem of removing tons of cement backing up the armor belt. Someone decided the best bet would be dynamite. It worked fine but the containment failed and a chunk the size of a car was blasted out of the yard and into a parking lot where it flattened a 1955 Chevy pickup trunk.
Text i.d. courtesy of Joe Barr.
Text courtesy of Jack Erskine, Port Orchard, WA.
Photo courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado303kThe last section being unloaded from the shipyard into Bethlehem Steel's railroad gondola, enroute to being melted as scrap steel. Text courtesy of Joe Barr.
Photo courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado952kMemories of Colorado (BB-45): Pennant and Jack & Teak Gangway made by Sea Cadets, 1960 Photos courtesy of Ron Reeves (of blessed memory).
BB-45 Colorado508k24 March 1960; Battleship's Bell Returns to Colorado; Unloaded at the State Capitol Thursday in the massive bronze bell from the battleship Colorado (BB-45). Navajo Freight Lines brought the 87-pound bell from Bremerton, Wash., where the ship was decommissioned. The bell is made of thousands of pennies donated by Colorado children in 1923. It will reside in the State Museum or the Capitol. At left in the picture is Rodger Caldwell, assistant supervisor of State Public Works, who helped direct the unloading operations. Lying beside the bell, in right foreground, is its heavy metal clapper. Photo By Jack Riddle/The Denver Post via Getty Images, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado605k9 October 1961: Gov. Steve McNichols, left, Looks over Bell of Colorado (BB-45); At center is Cmdr. Howard K. Hickman and, at right, John L. Griffith. Photo By Ed Maker/The Denver Post via Getty Images, courtesy of
BB-45 Colorado511kNote: (I have no idea if this is a contradiction of the above photos or not, someone please send me some feedback!)
27 January 1975 - Colorado's (BB-45) Bell Given to State: Gov. Dick Lamm, right background, accepts ship's bell in ceremonies at his office Monday morning. the bell, taken from battleship Colorado when it was decommissioned about 10 years ago, was given to the state by Joseph Piva, a marine-supplies dealer in New Bedford, Mass. It was presented to Lamm by Richard Sylvia, representing New Bedford, who also gave Lamm key to that city. Lamm said he wasn't sure whether it would be placed in the state's Historical Museum. Piva said he has rejected offers of up to $5,000 for the bell because he thought it belonged in Colorado.
Photo By Bill Wunsch/The Denver Post via Getty Images, courtesy of
(NISMF)371kA guest studies a painting depicting the history of battleships. The artwork was painted by George Skybeck and presented to the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association during their annual banquet at Honolulu, Hawaii, on 8 December 1991. USN photo # DN-SC-92-05391, by PHC Carolyn Harris, courtesy of, Defense Visual Information Center.
World War II Memorial371kA quote made by Fleet Adm. Chester W. Nimitz is inscribed on a granite wall at the National World War II Memorial located on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Fleet Adm. Nimitz was the United States signatory to the surrender terms aboard the battleship Missouri (BB-63) in Tokyo Bay, Japan on 2 September 1945, thus ending World War II. Established by the American Battle Monuments Commission, the memorial honors all military veterans of World War II, the citizens on the home front, the nation at large, and the high moral purpose and idealism that motivated the nation's call to arms. On 29 May 2004, the memorial was formally dedicated with an estimated 200,000 people expected to attend, and includes 100,000 visiting veterans of all wars. USN photo # N-0295M-011 by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Daniel J. McLain, courtesy of
624k Colorado (BB-45) Bell and wheel at University Memorial Center. Photo courtesy of Yu Chu.

Commanding Officers
01CAPT. Belknap, Reginald Rowan USN (USNA 1891) :RADM30.08.1923 - 08.06.1925
02CAPT. Karns, Franklin D., USN (USNA 1895)08.06.1925 - 17.07.1927
03CAPT. Lincoln, Gatewood Sanders, USN (USNA 1896)17.07.1927 - 27.06.1928
04CAPT. Watts, William Carleton, USN (USNA 1898) :RADM27.06.1928 - 00.01.1930
05CAPT. Miller, Ward Scott, USN00.01.1930 - 18.01.1931
06CAPT. Johnson, Alfred Wilkinson, USN (USNA 1899) :VADM18.01.1931 - 09.12.1931
07CAPT. Wygant, Benyaurd Bourne, USN (USNA 1901)09.12.1931 - 01.06.1933
08CAPT. Craft, Ralph Payne, USN01.06.1933 - 04.12.1934
09CAPT. Ancrum, William, USN (USNA 1903)04.12.1934 - 15.02.1936
10CAPT. Friedell, Wilhelm Lee, USN (USNA 1905) :RADM15.02.1936 - 23.07.1937
11CAPT. Withers Jr., Thomas, USN (USNA 1906) :RADM23.07.1937 - 13.12.1938
12CAPT. Robinson, Clyde Russell, USN (USNA 1907)13.12.1938 - 05.06.1940
13CAPT. Edwards, Richard Stanislaus, USN (USNA 1907) :ADM05.06.1940 - 00.10.1940
14CAPT. Lindsay, Lemuel Earl, USN (USNA 1909)00.00.1940 - 00.00.1941
15CAPT. Woodside, Elmer Lee, USN (USNA 1913)00.00.1942 - 14.09.1943
16CAPT. Granat, William, USN (USNA 1915) :RADM14.09.1943 - 23.08.1944
17CAPT. MacAulay, Walter Scott, USN23.08.1944 - 02.09.1945
18CAPT. Wellings, Augustus Joseph, USN (USNA 1920) :RADM02.09.1945 - 02.10.1945
19CAPT. Parks, Gordon Bennet, USN02.10.1945 - 15.06.1946
20CDR. Hardison, Chesley Marshall, USN15.06.1946 - 07.01.1947
Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves (of blessed memory)

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: Dorothy or Ken Jones,
Address:USS Colorado Alumni Association
ARLINGTON, TX 76016-4610
Phone: 1-817-478-687

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.

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