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Photographic History of the United States Navy


Displacement 433 Tons, Dimensions, 259' 6" (oa) x 23' 3" x 9' 10" (Max)
Armament 2 x 3"/50, 6 x 6pdr, 2 x 18" tt..
Machinery, 8,300 IHP; 2 Vertical, Inverted, Triple Expansion Engines, 2 screws
Speed, 29 Knots, Crew 72.
Operational and Building Data
Laid down by Maryland Steel, Sparrows Pt. Md. on November 13 1899.
Launched August 15 1901 and commissioned December 31 1902.
Decommissioned at Philadelphia July 13 1919.
Stricken September 15 1919.
Fate Sold January 3 1920 into the merchant service as banana carrier.
Standing by a damaged freighter (probably M.S. La Paz) off the east coast of Florida (80 10'W; 28 10') on 1 May 1942
Worden was sunk by the German Submarine U-109.

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Worden 85kJohn Lorimer Worden was born on 12 March 1818 in Westchester County, N.Y. He was appointed midshipman in the Navy on 10 January 1834. He served his first three years in the sloop-of-war Erie on the Brazilian Station. Following that, he was briefly assigned to the sloop Cyane before reporting to the Naval School at Philadelphia for seven months of instruction. He returned to sea in July 1840 for two years with the Pacific Squadron. Between 1844 and 1846, Worden was stationed at the Naval Observatory in Washington, D.C. During the Mexican War, he cruised the west coast, primarily in the store ship Southampton, but in other ships as well. In 1850, he returned to the Naval Observatory for another two-year tour of duty. The ensuing nine years were filled with sea duty which took Worden on several cruises in the Caribbean and Mediterranean Seas. Brought to Washington early in 1861, he received orders in April to carry secret dispatches, regarding the reinforcement of Fort Pickens, south to the warships at Pensacola. During the return journey north, Worden was arrested near Montgomery, Ala., and was held prisoner until exchanged about seven months later. Though still ill as a result of his imprisonment, Comdr. Worden accepted orders to command the new ironclad Monitor on 16 January 1862. He reported to her building site at Greenpoint on Long Island and supervised her completion. He placed the new warship in commission at the New York Navy Yard on 25 February and two days later sailed for Hampton Roads. However, steering failure forced the ironclad back to New York for repairs. On 6 March, she headed south again, this time under tow by Seth Low. On the afternoon of 8 March, Worden's command approached Cane Henry, Va., while inside Hampton Roads, the Confederacy's own ironclad, CSS Virginia, wreaked havoc with the Union Navy's wooden blockading fleet. During that engagement, the Southern warship sank the sloop Cumberland and severely damaged Congress and Minnesota before retiring behind Sewell's Point. Arriving on the scene too late to participate in the engagement, Worden and his command set about assisting the grounded Minnesota. At daybreak on the 9th, Virginia emerged once more from behind Sewell's Point to complete her reduction of the Federal fleet at Hampton Roads. As the Confederate ironclad approached Minnesota, Worden maneuvered Monitor put from the grounded ship's shadow to engage Virginia in the battle that revolutionized naval warfare. For four hours, the two iron-plated ships slugged it out as they maneuvered in the narrow channel of Hampton Roads, pouring shot and shell at one another to almost no visible effect. Three hours into the slug fest, Worden received facial wounds when a Confederate shell exploded just outside the pilot house. He relinquished command to his first officer, Samuel D. Green. About an hour later, Monitor withdrew from the battle temporarily and, upon her return to the scene, found that Virginia, too, had withdrawn. The first battle between steam-driven, armored ships had ended in a draw. After the battle, Worden moved ashore to convalesce from his wounds. During that recuperative period, he received the accolade of a grateful nation and the official thanks of Congress. Late in 1862, he took command of the ironclad monitor Montauk and placed her in commission at New York on 14 December 1862. Later in the month, Worden took his new ship south to join the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron off Port Royal, S.C. On 27 January 1863, he led his ship in the bombardment of Fort McAlister. A month later, newly promoted Capt. Worden took his ship into the Ogeechee River, found the Confederate privateer Rattlesnake (formerly CSS Nashville), and destroyed her with five well-placed shots. His last action came of 7 April 1863, when Montauk participated in an attack on Charleston, S.C. Not long after the Charleston attack, Capt. Worden received orders to shore duty in conjunction with the construction of ironclads at New York. That assignment lasted until the late 1860's. In 1869, he began a five-year tour as Superintendent of the Naval Academy during which he was promoted to rear admiral. During the late 1870's, he commanded the European Squadron, visiting ports in northern Europe and patrolling theeastern Mediterranean during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78. He returned ashore and concluded his naval career as a member of the Examining Board and as President of the Retiring Board. When he retired on 23 December 1886, Congress voted him full sea pay in his grade for life. Rear Admiral Worden resided in Washington, D.C., until his death from pneumonia on 19 October 1897. After funeral services at Washington's St. John's Episcopal Church, he was buried at Pawling, N.Y.Photo #: NH 101, Rear Admiral John L. Worden, USN photographed in full dress uniform by F.M. Zuller, Richfield Springs, New York, and the U.S. Naval Academy, April 1873.Tony Cowart/Robert M. Cieri
Worden 208kThe turtle-back design, of the early destroyers and torpedo boats, is easily seen here in this undated photo. Armed with two 3" guns, one shown here atop her forecastle, she also carried two six pounders forward, shown here peering through the open forecastle ports. Image from U.S. Destroyers: An Illustrated Design History by Norman Friedman.Robert Hurst
Worden 20kUndated post card painting of the Worden.Joe Radigan
Worden 160kUndated post card of the USS Worden (Torpedo Boat Destroyer # 16) underway. Image from U.S. Navy Revords.Robert Hurst
Worden281k USS Truxtun (DD-14) was the lead ship of her class of destroyers in the United States Navy. She was named for Commodore Thomas Truxtun. Truxtun was laid down on 13 November 1899 at Sparrows Point, Maryland, by the Maryland Steel Company and launched on 15 August 1901. She was sponsored by Miss Isabelle Truxtun, Truxton’s granddaughter, of Norfolk, Virginia. The twin ships Whipple (sponsored by Miss Elsie Pope of St. Paul) and USS Worden (DD-16) (sponsored by Miss Emilie Worden) were launched the same day. Photo by the Baltimore Sun Magazine.Bill Gonyo
Worden 104kPhoto #: NH 91222, USS Worden (Torpedo Boat Destroyer # 16) underway during the North Atlantic Fleet review, 1905. Photographed by the Burr McIntosh Studio. Courtesy of the Naval Historical Foundation, Rodgers Collection. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Tony Cowart
Worden 46kPhoto #: NH 43761-A, USS Worden (Torpedo Boat Destroyer # 16) at anchor, possibly in the Hampton Roads, Virginia, area in 1907. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Tony Cowart
Worden 81kPhoto #: NH 101529, Hudson-Fulton celebration, New York City, crowd observes warships anchored in the Hudson River, off New York City, during the festivities, circa 25 September -- 9 October 1909. The four-funneled destroyer in the left foreground is USS Worden (Destroyer # 16), accompanied by several torpedo boats. The British armored cruisers beyond are HMS Argyll (at left) and HMS Duke of Edinburgh (right center). Collection of Chief Quartermaster John Harold, USN. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Tony Cowart
Worden 135kDestroyers in port, circa 1914. The ship in the center foreground, with four equally-spaced smokestacks, is USS Macdonough (Destroyer # 9), which was assigned to the Reserve Torpedo Division, Newport, Rhode Island, on 1 January 1914. Alongside her starboard side (in left center) is USS Worden (Destroyer # 16), assigned at that time to the Reserve Torpedo Division, Annapolis, Maryland. The unidentified destroyer at far left is a member of the Second Division, U.S. Atlantic Fleet Torpedo Flotilla, as shown by the numeral 2 on her middle smokestack. Courtesy of Jim Kazalis, 1981. Source: Naval History and Heritage Command, Photo No. NH 99868 Mike Green
Worden 168kPhiladelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania, Old destroyers in the Reserve Basin, 13 June 1919, while awaiting decommissioning. Note the truck and liferafts on the pier. These ships are (from left to right): USS Worden (Destroyer # 16); USS Barry (Destroyer # 2); USS Hull (Destroyer # 7); USS Hopkins (Destroyer # 6) -- probably; USS Bainbridge (Destroyer # 1); USS Stewart (Destroyer # 13); USS Paul Jones (Destroyer # 10); and USS Decatur (Destroyer # 5). Ships further to the right can not be identified. Courtesy of Frank Jankowski, 1981. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Fred Weiss
Worden 81kPhoto #: NH 43036, Philadelphia Navy Yard, destroyers awaiting decommissioning in the Navy Yard's Reserve Basin, during the Spring of 1919. Photographed by La Tour.dShips present are (from left to right): USS Isabel; four unidentified "750-ton" type destroyers; USS Preble (Destroyer # 12); USS Decatur (Destroyer # 5); USS Paul Jones (Destroyer # 10); USS Stewart (Destroyer # 13); USS Bainbridge (Destroyer # 1); USS Hopkins (Destroyer # 6); USS Hull (Destroyer # 7); USS Barry (Destroyer # 2); USS Worden (Destroyer # 16); USS Truxtun (Destroyer # 14); USS Whipple (Destroyer # 15); USS Perry (Destroyer # 11); USS Lawrence (Destroyer # 8); and USS Dale (Destroyer # 4). U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Tony Cowart
Worden 113kPhoto #: NH 52105, Philadelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania destroyers awaiting decommissioning, in the Yard's Reserve Basin, 4 March 1919. Ships present include (from left to right): USS Lawrence (Destroyer # 8); USS Perry (Destroyer # 11); USS Whipple (Destroyer # 15); USS Truxtun (Destroyer # 14); and USS Worden (Destroyer # 16). Note Lawrence's after torpedo tube (with torpedo visible) and pattern camouflage; 48-star flags, radio masts and signal flags on several of these destroyers; and small craft moored to the ships' sterns. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.Tony Cowart
Merchant Service
Worden 109kPhoto #: 80-G-177164 (cropped), Worden, which has the Nicaraguan flag painted on her side, was the former USS Worden (Destroyer # 16), which was sold by the U.S. Navy in January 1920. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.Tony Cowart
Worden 295kThe torpedoed freighter MS La Paz being abandoned after being torpedoed off the east coast of Florida by U-109, 01 May 1942. The banana freighter Worden, ex-USS Worden (Destroyer No. 16) is standing by in the background. She was the former USS Worden (Destroyer # 16), which was sold by the Navy in January 1920.
U.S. National Archives photo 80-G-177164
Mike Green
Worden 67kThe banana boat (ex-USN destroyer) Worden with her name, homeport (Bluefields, Nicaragua), and nationality (the Nicaraguan colors can be seen painted just behind her name) prominently displayed, takes the torpedoed British freighter La Paz in tow on 1 May 1942 off the Florida coast. U.S. Navy Photograph # 80-CF-1055.8B, Still Pictures Branch, National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Md.Robert Hurst

USS WORDEN DD-16 History

View This Vessels DANFS History entry at the Naval History & Heritage Command website

Commanding Officers
Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves

LT Benjamin Bernard McCormick    Mar 17 1903 - Oct 5 1905

LT Victor Stuart Houston    Oct 5 1905 - May 16 1907

LT Louis Clark Richardson    May 16 1907 - Nov 18 1907

(Decommissioned November 18 1907 - May 16 1909)

LT Louis Clark Richardson    May 16 1909 - Sep 24 1909

ENS Ralph Roderick Stewart    Sep 24 1909 - Jan 22 1910

LCDR Frederick Newton Freeman    Jan 22 1910 - Jan 12 1912 

ENS William Robert Munroe    Jan 12 1912 - Feb 10 1912 (Later VADM)

(Loaned to Pennsylvania State Militia February 10 1912 - Returned December 6 1912)

LT Charles Adams Blakely    Dec 6 1912 - Sep 26 1913

LT William Denny Brereton Jr.    Sep 26 1913 - Mar 10 1914 

LT Aquilla Gibbs Diberll    Mar 10 1914 - Jul 25 1914

ENS Joseph McEvers Bayard Smith    Jul 25 1914 - ?

LCDR Oscar Charles Badger II    Aug  10 1918 - Oct 19 1918 (later ADM)

LT Oscar William Erickson    Oct 19 1918 - Jul 13 1919

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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This page was created by Fred Willishaw (ex ARG-4, AS-11 & DD-692) and is maintained by David L. Wright
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Last Updated 10 July 2017