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Navsource Online: Destroyer Escort Photo Archive

German torpedo attack in the Atlantic - Although Barr was brought home, repaired,
and restored to duty, 17 of her crew were lost and remain on eternal duty

USS Barr (DE 576 / APD 39)

Flag Hoist / Radio Call Sign:
N - K - V - X
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row: Combat Action Ribbon - American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal w/ 2 stars
Second Row: European-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal w/ 1 star - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal

Class: Buckley
Type: TE (turbine-electric drive, 3" guns)
Displacement: 1400 tons (light), 1740 tons (full)
Length: 300' (wl), 306' (oa)
Beam: 36' 9" (extreme)
Draft: 10' 6" (draft limit)
Propulsion: 2 "D" Express boilers, G.E. turbines with electric drive, 12000 shp, 2 screws
Speed: 24 kts
Range: 6,000 nm @ 12 knots
Armament: 3 x 3"/50 Mk22 (1x3), 1 twin 40mm Mk1 AA, 8 x 20mm Mk 4 AA, 3 x 21" Mk15 TT (3x1), 1 Hedgehog Projector Mk10 (144 rounds), 8 Mk6 depth charge projectors, 2 Mk9 depth charge tracks
Complement: 15 / 198
Barr (DE 576) Building and Operational Data:
  • 05 November 1943: Keel laid by by the Bethlehem-Hingham Shipyard Co., Hingham, Mass.
  • 28 December 1943: Launched and christened, sponsored by Mrs. Cora Dell Barr, Pfc. Barr's mother
  • 15 February 1944: Commissioned at Hingham, Mass., Lcdr. Henry H. Love, USNR, in command
  • 29 May 1944: Torpedoed by U-549 while operating with USS Block Island (CVE 21); 5 crewmembers dead, 12 missing, and 11 injured
  • 26 October 1944: Conversion to a Crosley Class APD completed at the Boston Navy Yard (redesignated APD 39)
  • 12 July 1946: Decommissioned at Green Cove Springs, Fla. after 2 years and 5 months of service
  • 01 June 1960: Struck from the NVR
  • 23 March 1963: Sunk as a target off Vieques Island, Puerto Rico
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    81k Woodrow Wilson Barr was born in Keyser, W.V., on 30 June 1913, and was named for the U.S. president. He was the son of James Arthur Barr (1883-1940) and Cora Dell Propst Barr (1885-1961), both long-time residents of Mineral County. The 1920 Federal Census shows the family living in Logan County, and lists Woodrow's siblings as Clarence A., Marguerite W., James O., Paul, Buster, Arthur, and Opal Marie. At some point, the family returned to Mineral County, but Woodrow Wilson Barr graduated from Parsons High School (Tucker County). Like many of his contemporaries from the eastern part of the state, he found employment in nearby Maryland, where he worked at the Celanese plant in Cumberland for four years prior to his service in World War II. He was a Protestant by faith.

    Barr enlisted in the Marine Corps on 13 January 1942 at Pittsburgh, Pa. Following training at Parris Island, S.C., and at Quantico, Va., he was shipped overseas to the Pacific theater on 28 April 1942. Assigned to the 1st Marine Raider Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, he was promoted to private first class on 01 May. In his short seven months in the Corps he served at Guadalcanal and Watchtower and later at Tulagi in the Solomon Islands. The Guadalcanal-Tulagi Invasion of 07-09 August 1942, just over a half year into the U.S. involvement in the Pacific Theatre, was led by an assault force of thirteen big transports, six large cargo ships, and four small high-speed transports manned by some 19,000 Marines and backed up by three aircraft carriers, a battleship, six cruisers, sixteen destroyers, and five oilers. Vice Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher commanded the entire operation. While most of these ships were intended to assault Guadalcanal, Tulagi, just twenty miles away and to the north, was a strategic target as well. Although the Marines achieved their invasion objective relatively quickly in this recapture, supply shortages over the next few weeks made their efforts to hold their territory tenuous. It was here that Barr was one of forty-five Marines killed in action as the U.S. recaptured that island from the Japanese on 07 August 1942. Pfc. Woodrow Wilson Barr lost his life when he persisted in his advance against a hostile machine-gun position.

    Pfc. Barr received the Silver Star (for "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action") and the Purple Heart, posthumously, in addition to the Presidential Citation (1942) and the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1942). His remains were returned to the United States, where he was interred at Queens Meadow Point Cemetery at Keyser in Mineral County, West Virginia.

    USS Barr (DE 576) (1944-1946) was the first ship to be named in his honor.

    (Photo from the web site: Find-A-Grave.)
    Mike Smolinski
    Clifton, N.J.

    Archive Manager
    DE / FF / LCS Archive
    81k USS Barr (DE 576) after being torpedoed on 29 May 1944.

    (U.S. Naval Historical Center photo #NH 86683 from the Naval History and Heritage Command)
    Mike Green
    Port Angeles, Wash.
    106k USS Barr (DE 576) showing damage to her stern after she was torpedoed by U-549 in the same wolfpack battle in which USS Block Island
    (CVE 21) was sunk.

    (Photo from "United States Destroyer Operations in World War II" by Theodore Roscoe)
    Bob Hurst
    Worksop, Nottinghamshire,
    England, United Kingdom
    59k Caption from the above news photo. Tommy Trampp
    Benton City, Wash.
    211k A similar picture to the above, taken from a different angle.

    (Photo from the Ned J. Marrow Collection)
    Ned Marrow
    Carol Hipperson

    Newsletter Article about
    Block Island's Loss
    Courtesy of
    Ned Marrow

    Barr History
    View the USS Barr (DE 576) DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command web site.

    Barr's Commanding Officers
    Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves
    Dates of Command Commanding Officers
    1.) 15 Feb. 1944 - 02 Jul. 1944Lcdr. Henry Harold Love, USNR (Comm. CO)
    2.) 02 Jul. 1944 - 31 Jul. 1945Lcdr. Porter Tobias Dickie, USNR
    3.) 31 Jul. 1945 - 22 Nov. 1945Lt. William Howard Gordon, USNR
    4.) 22 Nov. 1945 - 12 Jul. 1946Lt. George Mason Rowan, USNR (Decomm. CO)

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information

    Contact Name: "Smiley" Burnette
    E-mail: Smiley Burnette
    Note About Contacts

    Contact information is compiled from various sources over a period of time and may, or may not, be correct. Every effort has been
    made to list the newest contact. However, our entry is only as good as the latest information that's been sent to us. We list only
    a contact for the ship if one has been sent to us. We do NOT have crew lists or rosters available. Please see the Frequently Asked
    Questions section on NavSource's Main Page for that information.

    Additional Resources

    Navsource APD Pages, USS Barr (APD39)
    Tin Can Sailors
    The U.S. Navy Memorial
    Destroyer Escort Sailors Association
    The Destroyer Escort Historical Museum
    The Destroyer History Foundation
    To The DE, FF, LCS Photo Index Page
    Back To The Main Photo Index

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    This Page Created And Maintained By Mike Smolinski
    All pages copyright Navsource Naval History
    by Paul R. Yarnall, All Rights Reserved.
    Page Last Updated: 30 July 2021