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USS SAMPSON (DD-394)


Flag Hoist/Radio Call Sign - NELC

CLASS - SOMERS As Built.
Displacement 2767 Tons (Full), Dimensions, 381' (oa) x 36' 11" x 12' 5" (Max)
Armament 8 x 5"/38AA (4x2), 8 x 1.1" AA, 2 x 0.5" MG 12 x 21" tt.(4x3).
Machinery, 52,000 SHP; General Electric Geared Turbines, 2 screws
Speed, 37 Knots, Range 7500 NM@ 15 Knots, Crew 294.
Operational and Building Data
Laid down by Bath Iron Works, Bath Me April 8 1936.
Launched April 16 1938 and commissioned August 19 1938.
Decommissioned November 8 1945.
Stricken November 28 1945.
Fate Sold and broken up for scrap in 1946.

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Sampson 12kRear Admiral William T. Sampson, born at Palmyra, New York , February 9, 1840. Appointed to the United States Naval Academy September 24, 1857, and graduated at the head of his class in 1861. He subsequently earned an LLD degree from Harvard in 1899. He was promoted to Master, 1861 and commissioned as a Lieutenant July 16, 1862. He was Executive Officer on the ironclad USS Patapsco when it was blown up by mine in Charleston harbor. He was blown into water, but then rescued. Advanced to Lieutenant Commander, July 25, 1866, Commander, August 9, 1874, Captain, March 1889. He was Superintendent of the Naval Academy, 1886-90. An expert on ordnance, torpedoes, etc. With Lieutenant Joseph Strauss, he devised-perfected superimposed turrets introduced into the Navy in February 1898. He was President, Board of Inquiry as to cause of the destruction of the USS Maine in Havana Harbor, February 15, 1898, and after a declaration of war with Spain he commanded the North Atlantic Squadron with the rank of acting Rear Admiral. Promoted to Commodore, 1898, Rear Admiral, 1899. During the Spanish-American his command numbered 125 vessels, the strongest ever organized for hostile purposes. His fleet captured many Spanish merchant vessels and blockade runners and finally defeated the Spanish fleet under Admiral Cevera. Appointed, September 1898, one of three commanders to Cuba. Resumed command of North Atlantic fleet, December 1898. Commandant, Boston USN Yard, Oct 14, 1899. In 1865-67 he served on the USS Colorado in European Squadron, advancing to Lieutenant Commander, July 1866. Again at USNA 1868-71, and, after service on the USS Congress in 1872 and European station in 1873 and promotion to Commander in August 1874, he returned for third tour, 1874-78, as head of Physics Department. 1879-82 he commanded USS Swatara in the Asiatic Squadron, after 2 years as Assistant Superintendent of the Naval Observatory in Washington, DC, during which time was delegate to International Prime Meridian Conference, October 1884, he commanded the Naval torpedo station at Newport from 1884 to 1886. September 1886 named Superintendent of the Naval Academy. Promoted to Captain in March 1889, he left the Academy in 1890 to command the USS San Francisco. 1893-97 he was Chief of the Bureau of Ordnance, where under his leadership much progress was made in such matters as introduction of smokeless powder and improvement of gunnery training. June 1897 given command of new battleship Iowa, joining the North Atlantic Squadron as senior Captain. During February-March 1898 served as president of the Naval Board investigating the sinking of the Maine in Havana harbor. In the latter month he was advanced to acting Rear Admiral, and named to succeed the ailing Montgomery Sicard in command of the North Atlantic Squadron. On declaration of war against Spain in April, he proceeded from Key West to institute a blockade of northern coast of Cuba, his own plan to attack Havana directly having been overruled by the Navy Department. In May while location of the Spanish fleet under Admiral Cevera was yet unknown, he made a cruise east to Puerto Rico and on May 12 bombarded San Juan. He then returned to blockade and joined by "Flying Squadron" under Winfield Scott Schley, who, though technically his senior, was placed under his command for the campaign. He sent Schley to reinforce the blockade of the southern coast, particularly at Cienfuegos and Santiago. Schley was tardy in movements, and Cevera slipped undetected into easily defended harbor at Santiago. When he was finally discovered there, Sampson concentrated his forces outside the harbor. He supported landing of Shafter's army at Daiquiri, June 22, and the capture of Siboney next day, and the subsequent advance to Santiago. Following capture of San Juan heights commanding the city on July 1 he and Shafter arranged a shore conference to plan a coordinated land-sea assault. On morning of July 3 aboard the USS New York, headed for the conference point some miles to east. Half an hour later the first of Cevera's ships appeared, steaming out of harbor to west. The Blockade Squadron, under the immediate command of Schley, went instantly into action and in less than 4 hours entire Spanish fleet was sunk or run ashore. The battle took place entirely to west of harbor entrance, and the New York was out of it altogether. Considerable controversy ensued, with Schley, who had been present aboard the USS Brooklyn, quickly becoming hero of day in papers, while the Navy Department and most knowledgeable observers credited Sampson's training, preparation, and standing orders with the squadron's success. A dispute, bitter at times, delayed promotions for both men for nearly a year. During September-December 1898 in Cuba as 1 of 3 US commissioners. He was made permanent Rear Admiral in March , and resumed command of his squadron until October 1899. He commanded the Boston Navy Yard until October 1901, waiting orders from then until hie retirement, February 1902. He died on May 6, 1902, at Washington, DC and it was originally suggested that he be buried at the Naval Academy. He was, however, subsequently buried in Section 21 of Arlington National Cemetery.Steven A. Cardali
Sampson 129kUndated, location unknown.-
Sampson 32kUndated, location unknown.Bill Roddy
Sampson 96kUndated, location unknown. The ship is painted in camouflage Measure 32, Design 3d.-
Sampson 117kUndated World War II image.Captain Jerry Mason USN
Sampson 94kLaunching at Bath, Maine April 16 1938, from the collection of Paul Robert Simmons EM3c.Robb Boswell
Sampson 54kPhoto #: NH 67819, USS Sampson (DD-394) photographed circa the later 1930s. Courtesy of Donald M. McPherson, 1969. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Tony Cowart
Sampson 119kPhoto #: NH 66342, USS Sampson (DD-394) tied up alongside a sister ship, circa the later 1930s. Courtesy of the Mariners Museum, Newport News, Virginia. Ted Stone Collection. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Tony Cowart
Sampson 87kPhoto #: NH 103704, USS Sampson (DD-394) underway at sea, circa 1939-1940. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval Historical Center.Tony Cowart
Sampson 94kPhoto #: NH 59925, USS Sampson (DD-394) steaming near USS Saratoga (CV-3), circa 1940. Note the safety net at the side of Saratoga's flight deck, and the TBD-1 torpedo planes parked nearby. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Tony Cowart
Sampson 106kU.S. Navy ships in Teavanui Harbour, Bora Bora, Society Islands, in February 1942. The town of Vaitape is in the left centre. The light cruiser and destroyer on the right are probably USS Trenton (CL-11) - with four funnels, and USS Sampson (DD-394). An oiler is in centre distance (USN Photo No 80-G-K-1117).Robert Hurst
Sampson 130kPhoto #: NH 103705, USS Sampson (DD-394) underway in the Gulf of Panama, 14 March 1943. Though the pattern is not visible in this photograph, Sampson is painted in the very pale pattern of Measure 16 (Thayer system) camouflage. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval Historical Center.Tony Cowart
Sampson 86kPhoto #: NH 103706, USS Sampson (DD-394) underway in the Gulf of Panama, 14 March 1943. Halftone reproduction, published by the Division of Naval Intelligence in June 1943 for ship recognition purposes. Sampson is painted in the very pale pattern of Measure 16 (Thayer system) camouflage, which is faintly visible in this view. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval Historical Center.Tony Cowart
Sampson 112kPhoto #: NH 103707, USS Sampson (DD-394) underway in the Gulf of Panama, 14 March 1943. Halftone reproduction, published by the Division of Naval Intelligence in June 1943 for ship recognition purposes. Sampson is painted in the very pale pattern of Measure 16 (Thayer system) camouflage. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval Historical Center.Tony Cowart
Sampson 84kCirca 1944-1946 from the collection of Paul Robert Simmons EM3c.Robb Boswell
Sampson 78kUSS Sampson (DD-394) in backgroud off Biak on 27 May 1944. In the foreground is USS SC-699, enveloped in black smoke moments after being struck amidships by a Japanese G4M2 "Betty" bomber. Note the men clustered on her bow. U.S. Naval Historical Centre Photo from "Splinter Fleet" by Theodore R. Treadwell.Robert Hurst
Sampson 132kPhoto #: NH 103708, USS Sampson (DD-394) off the Boston Navy Yard, Massachusetts, 27 September 1944. She is wearing Camouflage Design 3D, presumably in Measure 32. However, the darkest tone looks rather light to be the dull black of Measure 32 and might be Measure 33's navy blue. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval Historical Center.Tony Cowart/Ed Zajkowski
Sampson 75kSeptember 27 1944, location unknown. Note that No.3 gun turret has been removed.Robert Hurst

USS SAMPSON DD-394 History
View This Vessels DANFS History Entry
(Located On The hazegray Web Site, This Is The Main Archive For The DANFS Online Project.)

Commanding Officers
Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves

CDR William Granat    Aug 19 1938 - Jun 1940 (Later RADM)
CDR William Kearney Phillips    Jun 1940 - 1941 (Later ADM)
CDR Linsford Yandell Mason Jr.    1941 - Jan 1942
CDR Harmon Brown Bell Jr.    Jan 1942 - Sep 4 1943
LCDR Thomas Martin Fleck    Sep 4 1943 - Dec 9 1944
LCDR Samuel Oliver Rush Jr.    Dec 9 1944 - Nov 8 1945

Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
Tin Can Sailors Website
Destroyer History Foundation
Destroyers Online Website
Official U.S.Navy Destroyer Website

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