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USS COLUMBIA (CL 56)


       
Flag Hoist/Radio Call Sign: November - India - Charlie - November

CLASS - CLEVELAND
Displacement 10,000 Tons, Dimensions, 610' 1" (oa) x 66' 4" x 25' (Max)
Armament 12 x 6"/47, 12 x 5"/38AA, 28 x 40mm, 10 x 20mm, 4 Aircraft
Armor, 5" Belt, 6" Turrets, 2" Deck, 5" Conning Tower.
Machinery, 100,000 SHP; Geared Turbines, 4 screws
Speed, 32.5 Knots, Crew 1255.
Operational and Building Data
Keel laid on 18 AUG 1940 by the New York Shipbuilding Corp., Camden NJ.
Launched 17 DEC 1941
Commissioned 29 JUL 1942
Decommissioned 30 NOV 1946
Fate: Sold for scrap on 18 FEB 1959 to Sun Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Company, Chester, PA for $188.888.87.

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Size Image Description Contributed
By And/Or Copyright
Columbia
0405619
223k The Columbia was launched at New York Ship in Camden on 17 December 1941. One of the first tugs to come alongside to assist was the Meyle steam-powered tug TRITON, pictured with three Curtis Bay Towing tugs. Dave Boothe
Columbia 60k Undated WWII era overhead photo. USN
Columbia 73k

Shortland Islands Bombardment, 1 November 1943. After 6"/47 gun turrets of USS Columbia (CL 56) firing, during the night bombardment of Japanese facilities in the Shortlands that covered landings on Bougainville. This photograph has been rather crudely retouched to eliminate radar antennas on gun directors and masthead.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives #80-G-44058.

Fred Weiss/National Archives
Columbia 132k

Bougainville Operation, November 1943. A Japanese plane plunges into the sea ahead of USS Columbia (CL 56), as she steams in column with other cruisers during the attack on Bougainville, 1-2 November 1943. Note 6"/47 gun turrets, with six-inch shell casings on deck below them.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives #80-G-44059.

Fred Weiss/National Archives
Columbia 60k As seen in 1944. (Slightly Blurred) USN
Columbia 160k

USS Columbia (CL 56) underway at sea in 1944. She is painted in Design 3d of the Measure 31-32-33 camouflage system.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the Collections of the Naval Historical Center #NH 45500.

Fred Weiss/USNHC
Columbia 106k

USS Columbia (CL 56) steaming with Task Force 77.4 in Surigao Strait, Philippine Islands, on 3 January 1945 while en route to the Lingayen Gulf landings. Photographed from USS Makin Island (CVE 93). Columbia is painted in camouflage Measure 33 Design 1d.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the Collections of the Naval Historical Center #NH 98064.

Fred Weiss/USNHC
Columbia 188k

USS Columbia (CL 56) docked in ABSD 1, Jan 1944 at Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides.

U.S. Navy photo #2169-44.

Darryl Baker
Columbia 199k

USS Columbia (CL 56) docked in ABSD 1, Jan 1944 at Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides.

U.S. Navy photo #2170-44.

Darryl Baker
Columbia 90k

USS Columbia (CL 56) Japanese "Zeke" type Kamikaze aircraft diving on the ship during the Lingayen Gulf operation, 6 January 1945. This plane, afire from hits by the ship's guns, crashed close aboard, showering Columbia's superstructure with gasoline. Photo taken from USS California (BB-44). Courtesy of John R. Henry, 1973.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph #NH 79448.

Fred Weiss/USNHC
Columbia 40k

USS Columbia (CL 56) Japanese Kamikaze aircraft diving on the ship at 1729 hrs on 6 January 1945, during the Lingayen Gulf operation. This plane hit the main deck by the after gun turret, causing extensive damage and casualties. Photo taken from USS California (BB-44). Courtesy of John R. Henry, 1973.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph #NH 79449.

Edward Cleary/USNHC
Columbia 64k

USS Columbia (CL 56) Japanese Kamikaze hits the ship at 1729 hrs on 6 January 1945, during the Lingayen Gulf operation. The impact, on the main deck by the after gun turret, with the resulting explosion and fire, caused extensive damage and casualties. Photo taken from USS California (BB-44). Courtesy of John R. Henry, 1973.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph #NH 79450.

Edward Cleary/USNHC
Columbia
0405617
464k Port bow aerial view while underway on 15 May 1945 off San Pedro, CA. David Buell
Columbia 79k

USS Columbia (CL 56) "Plankowners" among the ship's officers pose with her bridge wing scoreboard and life ring, following V-J Day 1945. Courtesy of John R. Henry, 1973.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph #NH 78972.

USNHC
Columbia 162k

USS Columbia (CL 56) - Plaque mounted on board the ship in memory of crewmembers killed and missing during World War II. Sixty men are named on the plaque. Photographed in 1946. Courtesy of John R. Henry, 1973.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph # NH 78970.

USNHC
Columbia
0405618
214k Funny how things work out. The USS Columbia was launched at New York Ship in Camden on 17 December 1941. One of the first tugs to come alongside to assist was the Meyle steam-powered tug Triton, pictured with three Curtis Bay Towing tugs.

Fast forward to 1959. After serving with distinction during WW-II, the Columbia was sold to Sun Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Company, Chester, PA, for scrapping. The ship was shifted from the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard with the assistance of the tug Triton, now dieselized. Once again, she's there to assist, now putting the old warrior into her final berth. The hulk to the right is what is left of the Minneapolis.
Dave Boothe

Commanding Officers
Name/Rank Final Rank Dates
Heard, William Augustin, CAPT   07/291942 - 04/01/1943
Beatty Jr., Frank Edmund, CAPT VADM 04/01/1943 - 06/25/1944
Curts, Maurice Edwin, CAPT ADM 06/25/1944 - 07/31/1945
DuPre Jr., Marcy Mathias, CAPT RADM 07/31/1945 - 01/1946
Adell, Bruce Byron, CAPT   01/1946 - 07/01/1946
Gorski, Henry Frederick, CDR   07/01/1946 - 11/30/1946

(Courtesy of Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves - Photos courtesy of Bill Gonyo)


USS COLUMBIA (CL 56) History
View This Vessels DANFS History Entry on the U.S. Navy Historical Center website.

Crew Contact And Reunion Information

Contact Name: Mr. Greg Shooner
Address:
Phone:
E-mail: gregandmary4@embarqmail.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 Cruiser Pages By Andrew Toppan.
USS Columbia CL-56 Website
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Last updated on 11/02/2012